Follow Me Down To Milltown barndance

Also known as Dances Of Kilfenora, The Kilfenora Barndances #1, The Kilfenora Barndances No. 1, The Kilfenora Barndances, The Kilrush Polka, The Kilrush Polkas #1, The Kilrush Polkas No. 1, The Kilrush.

There are 18 recordings of this tune.

This tune has been recorded together with

Follow Me Down To Milltown has been added to 3 tune sets.

Follow Me Down To Milltown has been added to 112 tunebooks.

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Seven settings

X: 1
T: Follow Me Down To Milltown
R: barndance
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
|:Adfd Adfd|Acec Acec|1 Adfd Adfd|dABc d2cB:|2 d2cB AGFE|DDCE D2||
X: 2
T: Follow Me Down To Milltown
R: barndance
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
|:A2 FA A2 FA|B2 GB B2 GB|A2 FA A2 FA|EFGA BcdB|
|:Adfd Adfd|Acec Acec|Adfd Adfd|dABc d2 cB|
Adfd Adfd|Acec Acec|d2 cB AGFE|DDCE D4:|
X: 3
T: Follow Me Down To Milltown
R: barndance
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
|:(3ABA F>A (3ABA F>A|(3BcB G>B (3BcB d>B|(3ABA F>A (3ABA F>D|E>FG>A B>cd>B|
(3ABA F>A (3ABA F>A|(3BcB G>B (3BcB d>B|A>dc>B (3ABA (3GFE|(3DED C>E D4:|
|:A>df>d A>df>d|A>ce>c A>ce>c|A>df>d A>df>d|e>dc>e d>cd>B|
A>df>d a>df>d|A>ce>c a>ce>c|(3ded c>B (3ABA (3GFE|(3DED C>E D4:|
X: 4
T: Follow Me Down To Milltown
R: barndance
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
A2 F>A (3ABA F>A|B2 G>B (3BcB d>B|(3ABA F>A (3ABA F>D|E>FG>A B>cd>B|
(3ABA (3FGA A2 F>A|(3BcB (3GAB B2 d>B|A>dc>B (3ABA (3GFE|(3DED C>E D4||
A>d (3fed A>d f2|A>c (3edc A>c e2|A>df>d A>df>d|e>d (3cde d>c (3dcB|
A>df>d a>df>d|A>ce>c a>ce>c|(3ded c>B (3ABA (3GFE|(3DED C>E D4||
X: 5
T: Follow Me Down To Milltown
R: barndance
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
|:B|A2 FA A2 FA|B2 GB B2 dB|A2 FA A2 FD|EFGA BcdB|
|:B|Adfd Adfd|Acec Acec|Adfd Adfd|edce d3 B|
Adfd Adfd|Acec gcec|d2 cB AGFE|DDCE D3:|
X: 6
T: Follow Me Down To Milltown
R: barndance
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
(3AAA (3FFF (3AAA (3FFF|(3BBB (3GGG (3BBB (3GGG|(3ABA F2 (3ABA F2|(3EEE (3GGG (3BBB (3GGG|
A>DF>G A>DF>d|B>DG>A B>dc>B|(3AAA (3dcB (3AAA (3GFE|(3DDD (3CCC D2 z2||
A>df>d A>d f2|A>ce>c A>c e2|A>df>d A>df>d|e2 c>e d>cd>B|
A>d f2 a>df>d|A>c e2 g>ce>c|d2 c2 A2 G>E|D2 C2 D4||
X: 7
T: Follow Me Down To Milltown
R: barndance
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
A>z F>z A>z (3FGA|B>z G>z B>z (3dcB|(3ABA F>D A2 (3FED|E2 F2 G2 (3BAG|
A2- A>^G A>DF>A|B2- B>^A (3Bcd c>B|A2 (3dcB A2 (3GFE|D2 A/G/F/E/ D4||
A>df>d A2 f>d|A>ce>c A2 e>c|A2 f>d A>d (3fed|e2- e>c d2- d>B|
A>d f2 a>d f2|A>c e2 g>c e2|d>z c2 A2 G>E|D>z C2 D4||

Thirty-three comments

Other versionsof Kilfenora

A fellow on the discussion board was looking for four versions of this tune - this is the only one I could find. Anyone have three more 🙂 ?

Kilfenora Reels

The Kilfenora Ceili Band recorded a set of three reels which they called simply “The Kilfenora Reels, although I think two of the set are also known as ”The Connemara Stockings“ and ”Rip the Calico“. These could be your other three ”versions".

“The Kilfenora” ~ the quadrille = swung two times…

Both the “Matt Cunningham Ceili Band”, on “Dance Music of Ireland Vol. 13”, and “The Heather Breeze Ceili Band”, on their album “Music in the Glen”, have recorded this tune for the 6th figure of “The Kilfenora Set”, called by some ‘the quadrille’, including the music to be played for it. In both cases this tune is played in the style of a barndance, with swing and lots of triplets, as for the head of the family, the hornpipe… It’s a great dance tune… I think the structure of the melody does tend to support this treatment, rather than racing through it flat. Both these recordings are great fun to do the dance to…

“The Heather Breeze Ceili Band”
CDs ~

Matt Cunningham
US ~
UK ~ generally good prices ~

“The Kilfenora” / “The Quadrille” ~ not 16 bars but 32…

Here first is the version of the tune offered here, merely expanded to be the 32 bars it usually has been. I’m not saying it can’t be 16 bars, but consider those ‘second endings’. I’ve only ever known it as 32 bars and that is the way the two bands above play it and the way I’ve heard it in the area of Kilfenora. Anyway, here is this transcription with no changes except in length and sense:

The Kilfenora
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
R: reel
K: Dmaj
|:A2 FA A2 FA | B2 GB B2 GB | A2 FA A2 FA | EFGA BcdB |
A2 FA A2 FA | B2 GB B2 GB | AdcB AGFE | DDCE D2 :|
|:Adfd Adfd | Acec Acec | Adfd Adfd | dABc d2 cB |
Adfd Adfd | Acec Acec | d2 cB AGFE | DDCE D2 :|

“The Kilfenora” / “The Quadrille” ~ more hornpipe than reel

Alright, I know this will get up the nose of ‘button’, but here is a transcription of it swung and with the classic triplets that often accompany it. Of course, if you push the tempo and rail into it the speed will, as it does to things, tend to flatten it…

K: D Major
|: (3ABA F>A (3ABA F>A | (3BcB G>B (3BcB d>B | (3ABA F>A (3ABA F>D | E>FG>A B>cd>B |
(3ABA F>A (3ABA F>A | (3BcB G>B (3BcB d>B | A>dc>B (3ABA (3GFE | (3DED C>E D2 :|
|:A>df>d A>df>d | A>ce>c A>ce>c | A>df>d A>df>d | e>dc>e d>cd>B |
A>df>d a>df>d | A>ce>c a>ce>c | (3ded c>B (3ABA (3GFE | (3DED C>E D2 :|

Personally, I prefer it with the swing than layed flat like asphalt under a steam roller… The structure and spirit of this melody, in my mind, tells you that…

“The Kilfenora Set” ~ for your viewing pleasure, including #6

Set Dancing News ~ Bill Lynch
The Kilfenora Set ~ vids: figures 1, 2 & 3 (& 6 below)

On this page are links to various videos and the ones for ‘The Kilfenora Set’ are actually to the following great site which also includes a video of the figure in question, the one this tune is popularly used for, #6, also called “The Hornpipe”:


Search ~ by ‘Dance Name’ & ‘Country’ ~ in English


* 6.)

The filiming was made by Werner, Celtic Bomba, and filmed in Proïtzer Mühle, Germany, at a set dancing workshop given by Mick Mulkerrin in the autumn of 2004.

Werner, Celtic Bompa
Celtic Bompa in Irish Dancing

UNDER INFLUENCE ~ The Present Confused with the Past

They say confession is good for the soul, well, I’m quite happy to say “I was wrong!!!” ~ HALLELUJAH!!!

So, why am I so ecstatic, aside from lifting the burden of guilt? Well, for one, I couldn’t sleep at all last night. That’s nothing to cheer about. I had this tune going non-stop with an accompaniment drone of tinnitis, and it wasn’t in tune… Some of you will laugh considering the recent thread in discussions on that. Anyway, still nothing to cheer about really, rather sad. And there was worse, my wife was in one of her snoring modes, and that was definitely not agreeing harmonicly with either the tune or the tinnitus, and it was one of those gurgling snores, agony… And I had this niggle of guilt about this tune, and anytime I say something sweeping like ~ “not 16 bars but 32”… Now we approach the revelation…

Over more than a decade now I’ve been under ceili band influences, and I’ve been dancing to this tune in their hands, and the greater tendency is to play this either on its own or in a set with ‘hornpipes’… After all, the general name for figure 6 of “The Kilfenora Set” is “The Hornpipe”. Those bands have tended to fit it in with that norm, or 32 bars. So, mostly, I’ve had this under my feet and in my head as 32 bars. And yet, all night last night it wasn’t 32 bars, it was 16 bars. I had also allowed these powerful influences to get in the way of my usual radar ~ especially with regards to swung tunes… Anyway, guess what, and this may p*ss some of you off, others I hope will be pleased ~ IT‘S A HIGHLAND FLING…yet another one hidden under the guise of a ’reel’, and as usual, a single reel.

What I love about this one is that it has the second ending twice, in the A-part and in the B-part, and there is a lovely ‘agreement’ between those repeats:

A.) ~ | A>dc>B (3ABA (3GFE | (3DED C>E D2 ||

B.) ~ | (3ded c>B (3ABA (3GFE | (3DED C>E D2 ||

The bit that spoke most to me were these jumps up an octave in the B-part:

~ | A>df>d a>df>d | A>ce>c a>ce>c |

I have a few more takes with it, but for now, here it is again swung but this time as 16 bars:

K: D Major
(3ABA F>A (3ABA F>A | (3BcB G>B (3BcB d>B |
(3ABA F>A (3ABA F>D | E>FG>A B>cd>B |
(3ABA F>A (3ABA F>A | (3BcB G>B (3BcB d>B |
A>dc>B (3ABA (3GFE | (3DED C>E D2 ||
A>df>d A>df>d | A>ce>c A>ce>c |
A>df>d A>df>d | e>dc>e d>cd>B |
A>df>d a>df>d | A>ce>c a>ce>c |
(3ded c>B (3ABA (3GFE | (3DED C>E D2 ||

I wonder if this is related to Willafjord. The A-part’s certainly very similar.

Not so sure about the 16 bar thing. For me it hangs together better as 32. And for me at a fairly quick pace like a Scottish reel.

It is played 32 bars both ways… Some scream through it and play it very much as a reel, and sometimes with a bit of swing in it, while others take it more relaxed and emphatically swung… Matt Cunningham and his group take it at a good pace, but swung, and they’ve done a nice recording of it. Both of those ceili band recordings listed above are, as said, 32 bars, buth they are very different from each other. They both have a nice way with the tune, though I find the more modern push for speed that the “Heather Breeze” gives it to be too fast to really have fun with, musically or dance-wise.

Probably because I have danced to it often, and played it that way too, 32 bars goes well with me. I like having a second go of each 16 bar part in a row. But, it soon became clear that it does work as 16 bars, and that has a quirky interest to it. This is also, I should have said above, dancing it as well as the tune and out of tune drone and snore going on at the same time. Dancing various highland fling steps and figures to it in my head helped to keep my attention off the drone and the gurgling besides me… 😉

“Kilfenora Reels” ~ “The Kilfenora Ceili Band”

This tune is not part of that set as recorded on their CD “Irish Fiddle Music”, track 1: Kilfenora Reels…

I’m almost sure, though I now not to trust surity completely, that this has another name or names, but I haven’t as yet found them. Possibly, when I get a few other ways with it in the comments here someone may discover that other name, or I might come across it in searching…

Endings ~ look before you follow form ~

Apologies, the last measure in the various versions given above were with this original transcript in mind, which is wrong. The should end on a D4 and not on a D2:

| (3DED C>E D4 ||

That should have read, the last measure in both parts, A & B:

A.) ~ | (3DED C>E D4 ||
B.) ~ | (3DED C>E D4 ||

“Willafjord” ~ Yes! ~ but what an odd transcription…

Submitted on September 24th 2001 by Redbird.

Thanks for he heads up Dow, but we really need a better transcription of this one in the ‘comments’…

“The Kilfenora” ~ taking it for walkies ~

Here’s a bit of fun, trebling the hell out of it in places and playing with it in other ways as well. These are just some fun you could have with it here and there and not necessarily all at once… 🙂 This is just to show some of the places where trebling could happen, either straight as in (3AAA, or with a little ‘rise’ as in (3ABA ~ and where you might also decrease what’s happening on a given beat or more, for example across the beat to an accidental as in:
~ |A3 ^G A>DF>A | B3 ^A (3Bcd c>B | ~

K: D Major
(3AAA (3FFF (3AAA (3FFF | (3BBB (3GGG (3BBB (3GGG |
(3ABA F2 (3ABA F2 | (3EEE (3GGG (3BBB (3GGG |
A>DF>G A>DF>d | B>DG>A B>dc>B |
(3AAA (3dcB (3AAA (3GFE | (3DDD (3CCC D2 z2 ||
A>df>d A>d f2 | A>ce>c A>c e2 |
A>df>d A>df>d | e2 c>e d>cd>B |
A>d f2 a>df>d | A>c e2 g>ce>c |
d2 c2 A2 G>E | D2 C2 D4 ||

Az Fz Az (3FGA | Bz Gz Bz (3dcB |
(3ABA F>D A2 (3FED | E2 F2 G2 (3BAG |
A3 ^G A>DF>A | B3 ^A (3Bcd c>B |
A2 (3dcB A2 (3GFE | D2 A/G/F/E/ D4 ||
A>df>d A2 f>d | A>ce>c A2 e>c |
A2 f>d A>d (3fed | e3 c d3 B |
A>d f2 a>d f2 | A>c e2 g>c e2 |
dz c2 A2 G>E | Dz C2 D4 ||

and a couple of other ways with bars 5 & 6 of the B-part:

~ | A>d f2 a>d (3fga | A>c e2 g>c (3efg | ~

~ | A>d (3fed a>df>a | A>c (3edc g>ce>g | ~

“…we really need a better transcription of this one in the ‘comments’”

I think it’s okay as it is, but I’ll post my version anyway.

Thanks, you’re so kind… I’ll keep visiting the Willsfjord in anticipation… 😛

It is done, Master.

But you’re right, nothing really wrong with the Willafjord transcription. I suspect it is probably just my head having been buried for 24 hours in this one… But I was curious to see more in the ‘Comments’ as far as different takes on that one… I like it…

Damn, that was quick…

We aim to please.

The Kilrush Polka

Strange as it may seem, this tune appears in the Craobh Naithi branch of Comhaltas tune books as The Kilrush Polka. Maybe it originated from a polka. There is another tune called the Kilrush Polka (referred to as No. 2 in the book) which appears on Chris Droney’s Fertile Rock album.

Kilrush Polka

When is a polka not a polka? When it’s the Kilrush which is one of the Kilfenora Céilí Band’s reels. But more importantly, where is the other one? I scrolled down through all the comments here but found no mention of this reel’s normal partner which sounds a little bit like Cregg’s Pipes. If no one volunteers it I’ll have to dig out the Band’s “Live in Lisdoonvarna” album and try and transcribe it.

Polka ~ Jig ~ Reel ~

These terms were often applied in reference to the dance or steps rather than specifically narrowed down to a particular time signature. You could ‘jig’ a ‘reel’ and ‘reel’ a ‘hornpipe’ and ‘polka’ a waltz or mazurka…

It would make a lot of sense if this was a highland fling, as those were used in the sets of quadrilles and figures like the hornpipe figure of ‘The Cashel Set’ actually fit, dance and measure wise, the 16 bar highland fling much better than with a 32 bar hornpipe, the norm nowadays…

That said, this tune has also done duty as a flat out 32 bar reel played for dance, for example the longways forms known collectively as ‘New England (U.S.A. & Canada) contra dances’… It works great that way too…

“Kilrush Polkas #2” / “Donnie Nolan’s” ~ the previous ‘was’ a duplication

Key signature: G Major
Submitted on March 16th 2005 by Kenny.

Maple Leaf

This was the first tine in a set taught to us by Jimmy Noonan at East Durham a few years ago. Interesting story - he said they’d recorded their CD (the Maple Leaf) in Ireland, they had the Ceili Bandits there with them to do this set and only a very limited amount of time. They had to get it in the first take - and they NAILED it! A great Cd, one of my favorites.

I simply end each part with;
EDFE D2 | |
as a tin whistle alternative to playing the low C.

Kilfenora reel

There is a specific reel called the Kilfenora Reel and this is not it. The Castle Ceili Band (or was it the Bridge?) recorded the tune of which I speak.

Specific ?

So why is the Castle Ceili Band’s “Kilfenora” reel the “ specific” one, and this one isn’t ?

Posted by .

The last figure of the Plain Set (and the Kilfenora set is a local version of the Plain set) was danced to quadrilles. My father used to always call for the Kilrush polkas for the last figure and i also remember Miko Russell talking about the quadrilles also for the last figure of the plain set. He had a store of other quadrilles. The Kilfenora ceili band and others recorded these two quadrilles as the Kilrush Polkas. There was always a difference between the Kerry polkas and the Clare polkas anyway so people just accepted them as polkas. The Craobh Naithai book reffered to above was written by Michael Tubridy the great Flute player and dancer from around Kilrush. The Plain set in his part of the country was danced to Polkas with quadrilles for the last figure. They have a lovely swing for dancing and are enjoyable to play.

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