Ballyoran polka

Also known as An Gallope, The Ballyoran Polkas #1, The Ballyoran Polkas No. 1, The Ballyoran, Gallope, Gallope, An, The Gallope, Paddy Spillane’s, Russian Cavalry.

There are 15 recordings of a tune by this name.

A tune by this name has been recorded together with The Barren Rocks Of Aden (a few times), I Have A Bonnet Trimmed With Blue (a few times) and The Shelf (a few times).

Ballyoran has been added to 1 tune set.

Ballyoran has been added to 23 tunebooks.

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Four settings

X: 1
T: Ballyoran
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
|:B/A/ | GD/G/ BG/B/ | dB/d/ gB | dc cA | ed B/c/B/A/ |
GD/G/ BG/B/ | dB/d/ gB | dc cF | AG G :|
|:B | dc cA | ed BG/B/ | dc cA | ed B/c/B/A/ |
GD/G/ BG/B/ | dB/d/ gB | dc cF | AG G :|
|:B/c/ | dg gf/e/ | dB BA/B/ | ce ed/c/ | BG G/A/B/c/ |
dg gf/e/ | dB BA/B/ | ce ed | G2 G :|
|:B/A/ | GD/G/ Bd | cA A/B/A/G/ | FD/F/ Ac | BG G/c/B/A/ |
GD/G/ Bd | cA AG | Fe ed | G2 G :|
# Added by hetty .
X: 2
T: Ballyoran
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
|: A/ |D2 FD/F/ | AF/A/ d>F | AG GE | BA F/G/F/E/ |
D2 FD/F/ | AF/A/ d>F | AG GE | ED D3/ :|
|: F/ |AG E/E/E/E/ | BA FD/F/ | AG E/E/E/E/ | BA F/G/F/E/ |
D2 FD/F/ | AF/A/ d>F | AG GE | ED D3/ :|
X: 3
T: Ballyoran
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Amaj
AE/A/ cA/c/|ec/e/ ac|ed dB|fe c/d/c/B/|
AE/A/ cA/c/|ec/e/ ac|ed dG|1 BA Ac/B/:|2 BA Ac||
ed dB|fe cA/c/|ed dB|fe c/d/c/B/|
AE/A/ cA/c/|ec/e/ ac|ed dG|1 BA Ac:|2 BA A2||
X: 4
T: Ballyoran
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
|:B/A/ | "*"GD/G/ BG/B/ | dB/d/ gB | dc cA | ed B/c/B/A/ |
GD/G/ BG/B/ | dB/d/ gB | dc cA | AG G :|
|:B | dc cA | ed BG/B/ | dc cA | ed B/c/B/A/ |
GD/G/ BG/B/ | dB/d/ gB | dc cA | AG G :|
G2G>E|E>D D A/B/|c3 B/A/|B3 A/B/|ce ed/c/|Bd dB/A/|
GA/B/ ce|d3 e/f/|g/b/a/f/ ge|d>e dB|~A2 G>E|D3 B/c/|
dd ed | BG2D|EG GA | G3|
|:B/c/ | dg gf/e/ | dB BA/B/ | ce ed/c/ | BG GB/c/ |
dg gf/e/ | dB BA/B/ | ce ed | G2 G :|
|:B/A/ | G/B/D/G/ Bd | cA A2A/G/ | F/A/D/F/ Ac | BG G2B/A/ |
G/B/D/G/ Bd | cA AG | Fe ed | G2 G :|
"* Variant"
|:B/A/ | G/B/D/G/ B/D/G/B/ | d/G/B/d/ gB | dc cA | ed B/c/B/A/ "etc"|

Thirteen comments

I was given this tune 30 years ago by a friend. It is a favourite with my wife and gets played regularly both for dances and for listening to. I also have it called "the Russian Cavelry March" and "Twelve Reel" although it is possible that the latter two names could relate to dances that the tune has possibly become associated with.

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Intro bar in the ‘C’ music should read Bc

Posted by .

‘C and ‘D’ musics here are the same as ‘Many a Wild Night’ submitted by Gian Marco on March 17th. 2004.
Research has led me to a tune by the name of ‘Ballyoran Hornpipe’. it was recorded in 1979 on an album entitled ‘The Gentlemen Pipers’ (Classic recordings of Irish Traditional Piping).
This is a 48 bar tune and I would love to compare the notation with the Ballyoran Polka. Can anyone help?

Posted by .

- another key and transcription - single ‘D’ row on a melodeon:

|:D2 FD/F/|AF/A/ d>F|AG GE|BA F/G/F/E/|
D2 FD/F/|AF/A/ d>F|AG GE|1 ED D>A:|
2 ED D>F||
|:AG E/E/E/E/|BA FD/F/|AG E/E/E/E/|BA F/G/F/E/|
D2 FD/F/|AF/A/ d>F|AG GE|1 ED D>F:|
2 ED D2||

While there are a few yahoos who don’t like to repeat melodies, preferring to run through one right after the other, that’s not general practice. Some even glue bits together and then repeat them in that fashion, as a longer tune. I know the two above mentioned polkas, this one, ‘The Ballyoran’, and the one notated by Gian Marco, ‘Many A Wild Night’:

https://thesession.org/tunes/2669/

as the usual two parters, 32 bar polka, not as suggested - ABCD=64 bars. There are also older recordings of them played this way. Both were learned as a set down south, Sliabh Luachra, first dancing to them and then playing them. I suspect glueing them together was just another of those ‘arrangements’…something to be wary of.

I’ve actually come across a similar madness, a particular ceili band, where four polkas were slammed together to make what some might mistake as a 128 bar tune - AABBCCDDEEFFGGHH…

One Polka!

Aye - the Ballyoran I know goes like this:

X: 1
T: Ballyoran
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
R: polka
K: Amaj
AE/A/ cA/c/|ec/e/ ac|ed dB|fe c/d/c/B/|
AE/A/ cA/c/|ec/e/ ac|ed dG|1 BA Ac/B/:|2 BA Ac||
ed dB|fe cA/c/|ed dB|fe c/d/c/B/|
AE/A/ cA/c/|ec/e/ ac|ed dG|1 BA Ac:|2 BA A2||

Leo Rowsome plays the Ballyoran at the start of this podcast: http://www.learnoutloud.com/Podcast-Directory/Travel/Europe/Live-Ireland-Podcast/6921 Mostly it’s remembrances and piping from his grandson Kevin, playing the same set of pipes as Leo did. Fearsome stuff from Leo, the Siege of Ennis/Ballyoran/White Cockade. Note that he has a different third part to this tune.

Was struggling mightily to figure out what these tunes were, and checked out the Ballyoran purely on a whim - serendipity at work.

Ballyoran Polkas

In Eamonn Jordan’s 1974 book "Whistle and Sing", the two polkas transcribed by hetty are given together as the "Ballyoran Polkas".

Ballyoran Polkas

X:1 - the latest, hmm, that’s not right! - close as I can get to what Leo and Leon Rowsome played in pipes duet, as heard on Kevin R’s Rowsome Tradition CD, with Liam R at the piano I think, or maybe that’s a sister/daughter. Truly one of the most wonderful recordings of trad I’ve ever happened across. They play the Ballyoran between the Siege of Ennis and the White Cockade; Leo’s setting has an additional part, and they include a busy variant for the 1st part too.

Hetty’s version (in effect, a combination of Ballyoran #1 and #2 ) appears in the EFDSS Community Dance Manual (Book 3) under the title "Russian Cavalry".

With it are the instructions for a dance called "Russian Ballet" - which might well explain the seemingly contrived "Russian Cavalry" title …

Re: Ballyoran

The 4 parts of this polka were recorded in the mid 30s by Frank Lee’s Tara Ceilidhe Band, who were London based; the parts were put on discs labeled The Walls of Limerick and The Waves of Troy - sic - that’s usually Torey, or Tory. The recordings may be heard here: https://www.itma.ie/digital-library/sound/cid-230793 https://www.itma.ie/digital-library/sound/cid-230794 The settings were printed before in Roche, Vol. 3, which may be perused here: http://www.capeirish.com/webabc/working/source.folders/roche/roche.3/roche.3_table.html

Re: Ballyoran

Thank you Lucy. Very interesting to hear where my contribution possibly originated from. Someone obviously saw the good possibilities of putting the 2 parts together. This (my) version of "Ballyoran" is still very much one of our favourite tunes and frequently gets used when we ‘play ourselves out’ at the end of a Ceilidh. It ends very well with the last two bars slowing down to a final stop. Like a train slowly coming to a halt at it’s terminal.

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