I’ve heard this one played slow, and I’ve heard it played fast and I think a nice, slow pace suits the tune better.
The combination of C sharps and C naturals can be tricky at first, but it gives the tune that little something special.
You might know this tune as "King of the pipers". This is the title Altan used when they recorded a nice, slow version of this jig. Confusingly, they then recorded the other "King of the pipers" a couple of albums later.
Here’s a great piece of detective work by Zina Lee:
"I wrote Kevin Glackin of Scoiltrad (www.scoiltrad.com) about this, as he teaches a class on Scoiltrad on King of the Pipers, asking him about the mystery of the names and asking which version was the one he teaches. His reply:
‘I have just put the phone down to my friend Tom Sherlock (Altan’s manager) where we played the two versions on the different albums over the phone.
The answer to your question is neither.
The version I am teaching was recorded indeed by Altan on an earlier album called the Red Crow and the title they gave the tune was Hudai Gallaghers jig.
This is not unusual for a tune to have several titles, it happens all the time. However the title King of the Pipers refers to about five different jigs all from the Donegal area.
The one on the Blackwater album is a three part jig that I will be teaching at Scoiltrad, I have recorded it on an album with my brother (Seamus) called Northern Lights on the Gael Linn label. The tune that is up on the site at the moment is one I got from James Byrne from Glenclomcille, Co Donegal.’
So there, that’s likely the most definitive answer we’re ever going to get, if one can call anything about Irish music definitive. I’ve often heard of a tune with lots of names, but I’d never realized that there was a title with so many tunes! (Sounds like Kipling’s Cat. Or Pooh!)"
While at the Catskills festival, Jackie Daly started up this tune one night at Furlong’s. It ended up largely being me and him playing the thing; I was surprised no one else seemed to know the tune, which I love — the Altan version is the one I first heard. After, Jackie told me that this is the Mayo variant of this jig.
Franc A’Phoill (jig)
Our tune workshop teacher introduced us to this tune last night. We all fell in love with it immediately.
Oisin MacAuley does a great version fo this tune on "Up in the Air" the Danu album where every member does a couple solos, but he calls it King of the Faires.
King Of The Pipers - 5-part setting
There’s a 5-part version of this jig on Altan’s Harvest Storm. The liner notes say that "Ciaran Curran heard this lovely five part version of "The King Of The Pipers" many years ago on a visit to the house of the late Mickey and Francie Byrne of Kilcar, Co. Donegal".
Posted for my friend Margot who said she wanted the dots. Hi Margot - cut & paste the abc into the box here http://www.concertina.net/tunes_convert.html and click on "submit". It’s important that you get all the headers in, including the "X".
T: King Of The Pipers
S: Altan: Harvest Storm
A2F B2F|A2G FED|A2F B2F|GFG GFD|
A2F B2F|A2G FED|GAB cAF|GFG AFD:|
|:dfa afd|d^cd ecA|GAB =cAF|GFG AFD|
dfa afa|geg fdA|GAB cAF|GFG AFD:|
|:d2e d2A|d2e dcA|d2e dcA|GFG AFD|
d2e d2A|d2e dcA|GAB cAF|GFG AFD:|
|:def def|def e^cA|def def|GFG AFD|
def def|def e^cA|GAB =cAF|GFG AFD:|
|:Ddd Dcc|DBB Dcc|Ddd Dcc|GFG AFD|
Ddd Dcc|DBB DAA|GAB cAF|GFG AFD:|
Flute and fiddle have a nice turnaround from the final bar back into the A-part: |GAG GFG||A…
Meaning of the title
Apparently "Frainc An Phoill" pr. (I think) [frank-a-fwil] means "Frank Of The Hollow".
Sounds great on Scottish Smallpipes
I absolutely love this tune. I play a version of this on my smallpipes using the D chanter and the D bariton and alto drones. The chanter is limited to Dmix, so I use all C naturals. It is a workout though, I’m usually sweating by the second time through!
Oops, the previous post should read "…D baritone…".
All-Ireland senior button accordion champion (2005 and 2007) Damien Mullane plays this four-part jig in this video.
Danu have this as King of the Fairies
On the album Up in the Air
Michael Cooney’s version…
I think this is close to what Michael Cooney plays here in this lovely setting:
T: King of the Pipers
A2G ABG | ~A2G FED | A2G ABF | ~G3 AFD |
A2G ABG | ~A2G FED | GAB cAF | ~G3 GFG :| ~G3 AFD ||
dfa afd | def ecA | GAB cAF | ~G3 AFD |
dfa afa | geg fdA | GAB cAF | ~G3 AFD:|
d2e d2A | d2e dcA | d2e dcA | GFG AFD |
d2e d2A | d2e dcA | GAB cAF | ~G3 AFD :|
def def | def e^cA | def e^cA | GFG AFD |
def d2A | def e^cA | GAB cAF | ~G3 AFD :|
dDD cDD | BDD ADD | dDD cDD | ~G3 AFD |
dDD cDD | BDD ADD | GAB cAF | ~G3 AFD :| ~G3 GFG ||
Michael Cooney’s version…
Correction: the 2nd, 3rd and 4th measures of the 3rd part of the tune should have c#’s.
The King of the Pipers
Watch Joe Burke play the tune backed by Charlie Lennon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NhwT3m3BzKs
Micheal Cooeney’s as published by JJ with some corrected C nat
Thanks you kindly, swisspiper!
Correcting my correction: the 2nd, 3rd, and 6th measures of the 3rd part of the tune should have c#’s.
Franc A’Phoill, X:8
I was taught this version by Brian McNamara from his album ‘The Fort of Jewels’