The Knocknagree polka

By Johnny O’Leary

Also known as JIB.

There are 8 recordings of this tune.

The Knocknagree appears in 1 other tune collection.

The Knocknagree has been added to 2 tune sets.

The Knocknagree has been added to 14 tunebooks.

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Five settings

X: 1
T: The Knocknagree
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
|:B/G/|B,>D ED|B,D DC/D/|B,D GE|A/B/A/G/ ED|
B,D E/F/E/D/|B,D DC/D/|dB GB|1 A/^A/B/=A/ G:|2 A/^A/B/=A/ G2||
|:de/d/ GB/d/|ed e/f/g/e/|{d/e/}dc/d/ eB|dB AB|
de/d/ GB/d/|ed e/f/g/e/|{d/e/}dB AG/A/|1 BG G2:|2 BG- G||
X: 2
T: The Knocknagree
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Amaj
|:C>E FE|CE EF/E/|CE Ac|B/c/B/A/ FA|
CE FE|CE EF/E/|ed/e/ Ac|Bc/B/ A2:|
|:ef/e/ Ac/e/|fe f/g/a/f/|ec/e/ fc|ec Bc|
ef/e/ Ac/e/|fe f/g/a/f/|ec BA/B/|cA A2:|
X: 3
T: The Knocknagree
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
|:B,>D ED|B,D DE/D/|B,D GB|A/B/A/G/ EG|
B,D ED|B,D DE/D/|dc/d/ GB|AB/A/ G2:|
|:de/d/ GB/d/|ed e/f/g/e/|dB/d/ eB|dB AB|
de/d/ GB/d/|ed e/f/g/e/|dB AG/A/|BG G2:|
X: 4
T: The Knocknagree
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
|:A/G/|FA BA|FA A^G/A/|FA d[Bf]|e/f/e/d/ BA/G/|
FA B/c/B/A/|FA A2|af df|ef/e/ d:|
f|ab/a/ df/a/|ba b/c'/d'/b/|{a/b/}a^g/a/ bf|af e2|
ab/a/ df/a/|ba bd'|{a/b/}af ed/e/|fd dF|
AB/A/ DF/A/|BA B/c/d/B/|{A/B/}A^G/A/ BF|AF D/E/F/G/|
A2 DF/A/|BA B/c/d {A/B/}AF E^D/E/|FD D||
X: 5
T: The Knocknagree
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
Bd ed|Bd G2|Bd gb|a/b/a/g/ ed|
B>d ed|Bd G2|dB GB|1 A/B/A G2:|2 A/B/A GB||
|:d2 GB/d/|ed e/f/g/e/|d>g eB|dB AB|
d2 GB/d/|ed e/f/g/e/|dB A/B/c/A/|1 BG GB:|2 BG G2||
# Added by DaveF .

Five comments

“The Knocknagree Polka” ~ C: Johnny O’Leary

Surprised not to find it, at least not yet, and I did try several keys and note groupings. I was reminded by this discussion, and after enjoying the link to the radio program and hearing Johnny’s grandson play it I transcribed it and this transcription is following his lead, though he does do some other things with it, including a couple of different ‘lead-ins’ to the A-music… Nice one Johnny. You are missed…

Discussion: Music for Knocknagree Polka (C: Johnny O’Leary)
# Posted by Mikiemax - February 27th, 2014

X: 2 “The Knocknagree Polka” ~ where there is no mention of this being a composition

B: “Johnny O’Leary of Sliabh Luachra: Dance Music from the Cork-Kerry Border”, edited by Terry Moylan, page 17, tune #27
N: the only comment at the bottom of this transcription: “Art O’Keeffe’s, a concert flute player beside Denis Murphy.” ( ? ;-/ )

Also relevant to this, from page 16: “The next forty-three tunes (#s 26 - 68) were played by Johnny at a recital organized by the Folk Music Society of Ireland at the premises of Na Píobairí Uilleann in February 1981.”

If this had actually been a composition by Johnny then I have no doubt that Terry would have known it and credited it to him. Maybe it is just wishful thinking on the part of family that this one was his own. However, he knew so many tunes and in my mind, in his own way, they were all his. I’m glad we had time together, including some serious talk, and laughter too, mixed in with the tunes and tales… He was a sweet man, and a gentleman who even when he wanted to kept his grumbling mostly to himself, or found a distraction to take his mind off of whatever was causing any discomfort.


Nice one! Thanks Ceolachan!

The Knocknagree, X:5

From Emma O’Leary on her album Mo Cheantar Féin. I might’ve have adapted some of the octaves so they sit well on a whistle.

From the sleeve notes:
I recorded Johnny O’Leary playing this tune in Dan O’Connell’s Bar in Knocknagree in the 90’s. I recently discovered from his grandson accordion player Bryan O’Leary that this is Johnny’s only composition and that he composed it in the key of A while I play it here in the key of G. This tune can be found in Terry Moylan’s Johnny O’Leary of Sliabh Luachra; Dance Music from the Cork-Kerry Border.

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