I just spent an hour or so trying to get Conal O’Grada’s version of this famous fluters/pipers tune under my belt. It’s not really hard but it is a lot to remember, well worth it if you can. I’d say it’s more of a party piece than a ‘chestnut’ often heard at sessions. Enjoy
Off the top of my head, - also recorded by The Dubliners, Finbar Furey, Paddy Keenan, Brendan Ring & Niall Keegan, Charlie Lennon, Seamus Tansey, Liam O’Flynn, Kieran Hanrahan, and "Inchiquin". Has to be a great tune.
Yeah, this is one of the ‘big’ tunes, I wish I had it all under my belt.
I’ve always liked this one, being a piper. This is a tune that just begs you to vamp on the regulators during parts of it, especially the fourth part. I wish it were more of a session chestnut, I try to play it once in a while at sessions because there are a few fiddlers in town that enjoy it, too.
This version looks more like a flute version to me and does not have the flow of a piping version. I strongly suggest listening to Johnny Doran’s version for variations and Liam O’Flynn’s very clean, precise playing is full of ideas, too. Brian McNamara recorded a slower-than-usual version on his solo album that still has logic and invention to spare. He plays it on a C set, so you’ll need a C whistle to play along or be able to transpose the tune into F.
Jerry Sullivan also plays a good version of this, worth checking out.
Am posting my version of this as a note for myself so I won’t have to sit down and relearn it for a 3rd time. Why does a tune have to have so many parts to remember?
T: Colonel Fraser’s
A|BGAF DG~G2|ADFA d2cA|BGAF GBdg|fdcA dBcA|
BGAF DG~G2|ADFA d2cA|BGAF GBdg|fdcA G3:|
|:B|dggf g2ag|fdde fdcA|dgga bgag|fdcA G2 (3Bcd|
~g3e d2dc|BG~G2 ADFA|GBAc (3Bcd ge|fdcA G3:|
|:A|Bd~d2 BGdB|AGFG ABcA|Bd~d2 BGdB|cAFG AGGA|
Bd~d2 BGdB|AGFG ABcA|GBAc (3Bcd ge|fdcA G3:|
|:A|~B2GB ~B2GB|~A2FA DAFA|~B2GB ~B2GB|cAFG AGGA|
~B2GB dBGB|~A2FA DAFA|GBAc (3Bcd ge|fdcA G3:|
|:A|(3Bcd gd (3Bcd gd|Adfd Adfd|(3Bcd gd (3Bcd gd|cAFG AGGA|
(3Bcd gd (3Bcd gd|Adfd AdFA|GBAc (3Bcd ge|fdcA G3:|
Lovely version by Kieran Hanrahan. He plays the F’s in the last part natural. Sounds to me like am mix of the Flogging and College Groves.
the best version i’ve heard of this was played by John McSherry live in Dublin. Very clean with impecable ornamentation
Fiddle version by Bobby Casey
There’s a great version of this by Bobby Casey in the RTE Ceili House Archives for August 7 2004. Casey was recorded in the RTE studios in 1977. The commentator says "anybody looking for a good version of Colonel Frazier, well it’s right there".
The programme also includes solo recordings of Junior Crehan and Paddy Canny.
Sleeve Notes - Inside Out
According to the sleeve notes on Michael O Raghallaigh’ s album, this was recorded in the 20’ by Michael Coleman and titled "Malloy’s Favourite".
Older and shorter version
The West Wind: https://thesession.org/tunes/2837
I hate to keep asking this, but does anyone know the composer’s name? Or is it another for the "Traditional" pile?
To my knowledge, no-one has ever put a name to a composer for this classic. Seamus Tansey was quoted once somewhere as saying the good Colonel had been a popular land-owner in Co. Sligo, I seem to recall. The tunes’ origins seem to have been lost. Surprised that nobody has mentioned Paddy Keenan’s version recorded on his first solo album. Used to be one of Barney McKenna’s showpieces.
Kevin Crawford on Bb flute
The clip has become unavailable on Custy’s website, but thankfully someone has posted it on Youtube. I’m sure that model of Bb flute made by M. Grinter is getting popular among other flute players in Ireland. I saw Damien Stenson of Teada playing it in Sligo a few years ago.
Matt Molloy playing “Colonel Fraser”.
Hope the link works. Posted yesterday by new member "nufetulf".
From the Fiddler’s Companion:
"Flute player Seamus Tansey relates that Colonel Fraser was an English landlord in Leinster, a man of good temperament who was kind to his tenantry and to travelling pipers. He bought one piper a set of new pipes and had this tune composed for him in gratitude. Tansey said the piper was inspired by the sight of the Colonel galloping on his horse to the hunt, “It’s like the ‘Fox Chase’, but different."
Lottie Cullen - Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann 2012
It’s a fantastic tune to add variations, so I have posted a few variations I use.
X:4 Wllie Clancy’s version
Need to learn the tune - goal for 2014 😉
John McSherry as a teen: