La Cosa Mulligan reel

Also known as Danny Meehan’s, Jackson’s, Jackson’s No. 2, Jackson’s No2, Jacksons #2.

There are 13 recordings of this tune.

La Cosa Mulligan appears in 2 other tune collections.

La Cosa Mulligan has been added to 12 tune sets.

La Cosa Mulligan has been added to 88 tunebooks.

Download ABC

Two settings

X: 1
T: La Cosa Mulligan
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
|:F|D2FD EDFE| DEFD EA, ~A,2|CE ~E2 GABd| ceAc dBAF|
|:g|fd d2 ~d3f| e/2f/2e ^de fe=dB|A2cA BAcB| ABcA Bcde|
fd d2 ~d3f| e/2f/2e ^de fe=dB|ABde faea|1fd d2 ~d3:|2fddc d/2d/2c dB||
A3A B2AG| FAAF G/2F/2E F/2E/2D| ~E3F GFEG| Agec dBAF|
X: 2
T: La Cosa Mulligan
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
E| fddc d3e | fddd edcB | A2cA AAcA | AAcA efge |
fddc d3e | fddd edcB |Aece gecd | eddc d3 :|

Eleven comments

This setting is more or less taken from Frankie Gavin’s playing on his album with Alec Finn, c. 1977.

Some notes:

- the odd structure (C part only half as long as the other parts) is something I see in a lot of Northern tunes.

- I’m totally unclear on whether Tommy Peoples wrote this tune. I think he says he did, but he doesn’t call it "Jackson’s." I’m really confused about this because I asked him about it once and he was fairly reticent about it (big surprise), and whether the setting here is what he wrote. Oh well…

- Frankie Gavin and Mairead (from Altan) both use their fourth finger to play a D drone (on the G string) during the entire first bar and a half. Gives it a special drive. You’ll encounter Northern players doing this on other tunes. (When I tried to add the drone in my ABC program it got confused so I left it out.)

If anyone has some good information about the source of this tune, please post it.

i’ve been trying to learn this myself of late as it’s a great tune.there’s some differences between gavin’s and peoples’ settings,and frankie’s variations are another thing.

but,there’s also a version of this on ‘the brass fiddle’ played by vincent campbell.the sleevenotes say that (according to vincent) this reel was introduced into donegal by the musical fitzgerald family from co. mayo.
either way,this is a tune to lift your spirits.


sorry,pchaffee,please ignore my above post - the jackson’s you posted is n’t the one to which i was talking about at all.(i meant the 2nd jackson’s from the frankie gavin set) and yours is the 1st tune - my dodgy abc perception set me off on the wrong track.i’m afraid i can’t help you out on this tune after all.
yours,in sackcloth and ashes etc…


…to both of you (bigvioladave and celiog) for your posts.

Ceilog: Can you tell if La Cosa Mulligan is the tune I posted? Thanks…


Thanks again. It is a great tune. Now i feel bad that

1) I posted the setting played by FG when in fact we have a recorded version of TP playing his own composition and

2) I contributed to the propagation of the incorrect tune name.

May the muses of ITM forgive me…

Incidentally Danny Meehan recorded this tune as a solo on Le Cheile’s LP, "Lord Mayo". He called it "Over the Isles to America" - I wonder if that’s what TP originally called it before he started saluting record companies.

La Cosa Mulligan

According to the liner notes for the album "The Quite Glen" by Tommy Peoples for Track 3:
I wrote both of these tunes in the late sixties. … [La Cosa Mulligan] erroneously acquired the title "Jackson’s No. 2," possibly because it is of a similar genre as another reel called Jackson’s, which I recorded on the "High part of the road" album. Its proper title is as above. I gave it this title as a mark of respect to Mulligan Music Ltd. with whom I was briefly involved in the seventies.

I recently learnt this tune at a workshop but the instructor called it "Casa Mulligan."

La Cosa Mulligan

There’s a great clip of this appeared on Youtube recently:

Andy Dickson and Ben Lennon (fiddles), Cathal Hayden (banjo) and John Faulkner (bouzouki) play Jackson’s Reels; 1983
Really nice playing
Comparing it to the original transcription, these guys play that "C" part as a variation to the "A" part on the second time through. To my ear its a bit awkward to drop right back into the "A" part, so this makes a nicer transition.
Listening to Frankie Gavin, he plays it as written with the extra "C" part - so there you go.

Jacksons #2

from Phil Cunningham, Airs and Graces
followed by Jeans (in F), Moving Cloud (G)