Dark Is The Colour Of My True Love’s Hair waltz

There is 1 recording of a tune by this name.

Dark Is The Colour Of My True Love's Hair has been added to 3 tunebooks.

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One setting

X: 1
T: Dark Is The Colour Of My True Love's Hair
R: waltz
M: 3/4
L: 1/8
K: Ador
|:d2|{/E}G6 | B6|+slide+c4 {B} G2| {/E}=F6|+slide+^F6|+slide+{/A}G6 | z6 |
|d2 {e} =f4|+slide+g6|a4 g2| {e} f2 d4 |a4 g2| {e} f2 |d4 c2|{B}d6| z6 |
|d2 {e} =f4|+slide+g6|a4 g2| {e} f2 d4 |a4 g2| {e} f2 |d4 c2|{B}d6| z4 d2 |
|{/E}G6 | B6|+slide+c4 {B} G2| {/E}=F6| ^F6|+slide+{/A}G6 | z4 :|

Three comments

Dark Is The Colour Of My True Love’s Hair

I found it difficult to notate this particular air - so forgive me - it’s a start. I could not find it in the session database - perhaps it has another name?

This is the Willie Clancy’s air, who learnt it from another… and as played by Matt Molloy.

Not to be confused with the more common "Black is the Colour". The lyrics of both these tunes are similar, but the melody is very different.

Hoping somebody can shed more light about this air.

Re: Dark Is The Colour Of My True Love’s Hair

This is what I remember hearing somewhere - can’t remember precisely where or when. Willie Clancy heard someone singing the American song "Black Is The Colour Of My True Love’s Hair" while travelling somewhere in Eastern Europe, possibly as early as the 1950s. He liked the melody, and turned it into a slow air adapted to be played on uilleann pipes. These are not 2 completely different tunes - the slow air evolved directly from the song.
The more common name is "Black Is The Colour Of My True Love’s Hair" - it was posted here 10 years ago :

https://thesession.org/tunes/7454

Matt Molloy recorded it here 40 years ago - track #3 : https://thesession.org/recordings/1093

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Re: Dark Is The Colour Of My True Love’s Hair

Thanks Kenny for your insight. Great to hear your thoughts, it helps consolidate what I’ve heard.

I’m familiar with the thesession tune listing "Black is the Colour" https://thesession.org/tunes/7454 - we play it almost every gig in the band… as recorded by famous bands Christy Moore, Mary Black, Corrs.

Do you think this version "Dark is the Colour" deserves its own spot because it is a different melody - to the extent - if I played this version the guys in the band - they would not have a clue to what I was doing!

Is this why Matt calls it "Dark is the Colour"… rather than "Black is the Colour"?

For others reading this… Mat Molloy’s direct youtube link of this version is here…
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y2IlezcE7bA&feature=youtu.be


I’m having trouble showing slides (Portamento) to show up - they don’t look right. I think we need them for airs - despite what people have said here…
https://thesession.org/discussions/21694

I’m not one generally one to notate Ornamentation, but on a slow air… it defines the tune. You can see Matt uses the same ornamentation on this particular tune on other recordings. Here he plays an Eb flute…
https://youtu.be/b1SPfXOGXEQ?t=10m54s (Jump to 11min)


Magic :)

Cheers