The Duck jig

There are 10 recordings of a tune by this name.

The Duck has been added to 1 tune set.

The Duck has been added to 73 tunebooks.

Download ABC

Five settings

X: 1
T: The Duck
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
"G"D2G "G"GAB|"C"A2G "G"GAB|"C"A2G "G"GAB|"C"A2G "C"ABB|
"G"D2G "G"GAB|"C"A2G "G"GAB|"C"A2G "G"BAG|"Em"E2D "Em"EGG:|
"G"D2d "G"B2A|"C"BGG "G"G2A|"C"BGG "G"G2A|"G"B2A "C"Bcd|
"G"D2d "C"B2A|"G"BGG "G"G2A|"D"B2A "D"BAG|"C"E2D "C"EGG:|
"D"D2F "D"FAB|"Em"A2F "Em"FAB|"Bm"A2F "Bm"FAB|"C"A2F "C"ABB|
"D"D2F "D"FAB|"Em"A2F "Em"FAB|"D"A2F "Bm"BAF|"C"E2D "C"EFF:|
"G"D2d "G"B2A|"C"Bcd "G"B2A|"G"BAd "G"B2A|"C"BAd "C"BAd|
"G"D2d "G"B2A|"C"Bcd "G"B2A|"G"BAd "Bm"BAF|"C"E2D "C"EFF:|
X: 2
T: The Duck
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
Add def|edd def|edd def|edd eff|
Add def|edd def|e2d fed|B2A Bdd:|
A2a f2e|fdd d2e|fdd d2e|f2e fga|
A2a f2e|fdd d2e|f2d fed|B2A Bdd:|
Acc cef|ecc cef|ecc cef|ecc eff|
Acc cef|ecc cef|e2c fec|B2A Bcc:|
A2a f2e|faa f2e|faa f2e|faa fec|
A2a f2e|faa f2e|eff fec|B2A Bcc:|
X: 3
T: The Duck
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
A2d def|e2d def|e2d def|e2d eff|
A2d def|e2d def|e2d fed|B2A Bcd::
A2a f2e|fdd d2e|fdd d2e|fdd faa|
A2a f2e|fdd d2e|1f2e fed|B2A Bcd:|2faf fed|B2A Bcd|]
|:A2c cef|e2c cef|e2c cef|e2c eff|
A2c cef|e2c cef|e2c fec|B2A Bcc::
A2a f2e|faa f2e|faa f2e|fea fec|
A2a f2e|faa f2e|fAf fec|B2A Bcc:|
X: 4
T: The Duck
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
|:A2d def|e2d def|e2d def|e2d eff|
A2d def|e2d def|e2d fed|B2A Bcd:|
|:A2a f2e|fdd d2e|fdd d2e|fdd faa|A2a f2e|
fdd d2e|1 f2e fed|B2A Bcd:|2 faf fed|B2A Bcd||
X: 5
T: The Duck
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
|:A2c cef|e2c cef|e2c cef|e2c eff|
A2c cef|e2c cef|e2c fec|B2A Bcc:|
|:A2a f2e|fga f2e|fea f2e|fea fea|
A2a f2e|fga f2e|fea fec|B2A Bcc:|

Thirty-four comments

Problem with Tune request- “The Duck”?

I know I’ll get a row for this but I’ve encountered a small problem when searching for a tune here. The tune I wished to find is called "The Duck" and I get "The Leg of the Duck" only when I search in the tune section. Because I’ve had a result, I’m not given the facility to request this tune. Can anyone advise or, if they know the tune, post it?
I’d sooner have the whole bird than just the leg. I’m a hungry b-gger. :-)

Re: Problem with Tune request- “The Duck”?

Is this tune on one of the Ossian CDs? If so I’ll post it when I get the chance.

Re: Problem with Tune request- “The Duck”?

Thaks Conan. It’s on "Dove across the water" and "The Best of Ossian". Keep it Up have also recorded this. It’s quite a simple tune and I’ve already learned most of it by ear. However, there are one or two bits I’m not sure about and would like to check the dots. So far, I’ve never seen it written down.

Re: Problem with Tune request- “The Duck”?

John I’m at work at the mo’ and then I’m flying off to Belfast for the weekend straight afterwards.
If you could give me the key of the first part I will try and cobble it together from memory during my lunch break.

Re: Problem with Tune request- “The Duck”?

It’s in B flat on the Ossian album because of the pipes but I prefer to play it in A as on the Keep it Up album. It won’t matter, though, as I can transpose it. Thanks.

(My connection has been down or I’d have been back to you sooner. There’s no rush, though.)

In response to JohnJ’s request

I put this together from memory during my lunchbreak and added some slightly more realistic chords. Obviously this is a rough hash of the real thing - no ornamentation and some of the notation might be *slightly* out.

If anyone has any comments re the key signature or wants to amend the notation, let me know in this section.

Re: Problem with Tune request- “The Duck”?

It’s up - I did it in G ‘cos it’s easy!

Thanks Conan

Thanks for that. I see that you’ve submitted in "G" but that won’t matter. It’ll be easy enough to transpose to "A" on the fiddle or mandolin. I just have to move up a string.
The notation seem fine and, if the recorded(or other)versions are slightly different, I should be able to adapt accordingly.
Thanks a lot. As I say, I had got most of it already but I wasn’t sure of certain bits-mainly in the last part.

Re: Problem with Tune request- “The Duck”?

Thank you, Conan. And thanks also to Jeremy for your patience with this thread. :-)

Re: Problem with Tune request- “The Duck”?

No problem. Sorry about the key!

Re: Problem with Tune request- “The Duck”?

Sorry, I’ve been a "total slaver". The Ossian key is E flat and Keep it Up is in D. It’s the third part which got me confused as the key appears to change, ie sounds more like B flat and A respectively.
Anyway, the same applies. It’s still easy to transpose. Thanks again.

Sorry, I’ve been a "total slaver". The Ossian key is E flat and Keep it Up is in D. It’s the third part which got me confused as the key appears to change, ie sounds more like B flat and A respectively.
Anyway, the same applies. It’s still easy to transpose. Thanks again.

Re: Problem with Tune request- “The Duck”?

You’re right about the key change, John. The transpose facility in ABCMus would work for playing along if you knock it up 8 semitones. Sounds nice with drones (DGdg) as all good piping tunes should.

Re: Problem with Tune request- “The Duck”?

I’ve got that old Ossian vinyl. That’s a great tune!

Re: Problem with Tune request- “The Duck”?

It’s a wee cracker. If you transpose it 7 semitones (not 8 as I said earlier) and plonk it on the end of Duncan Johnstone - also in the tunes section - you’re nearly there with the set. The Curlew that Ossian play after those two is a different tune from the Curlew (Glenbeigh Hornpipe)listed here though.

Re: Problem with Tune request- “The Duck”?

Maybe this discussion should be in the "Tunes" section… Jeremy?

Donald McLeod again

Another composition by Pipe Major Donald McLeod, but he never wrote it in G, and I’ve never heard it played in that key, anywhere.
The name refers not to a bird, but to a piper of Donald’s acquaintance who had an odd posture when he was playing.

Posted by .

Nice

Good man Kenny! There’s nothing like the real thing.

The Duck

"The Duck" listed "On The Offbeat" is a composition by Liz Carroll and completely different from the tune setting above. Nevertheless this setting is also nice and interesting, specially the changing chords behind identical sequences.

Second setting in correct key: first two parts in D, this and fourth in A.
I really like the way that by changing all the D notes in the first part to C# notes in the third part you not only change the key but get a tune that makes musical sense.

Alternative version

X:3, broadly the same as X:2 from my colleague DonaldK, is from a sheet handed out at a workshop, and although the main differences are rhythmic there are a few different notes and a 2nd-time ending for strain 2.

The story I have is that only strains 1 & 2 are by Pipe Major Donald MacLeod, and that 3 & 4 were added by piper Willie “Wulls” Galbraith - to good effect, as DonaldK observes.

The Duck, X:4

Previous settings were 4-parts. The A & C parts were almost identical in X1, aside from a few alternatives notes in the the bar (which harmonized). The B & D parts differed a bit more, but, could be played simultaneously without any issues, since they harmonize.

The Duck, X:5

The C & D parts, for comparison. These can be played in place of the A & B parts of X4.

Re: The Duck

NfdlWhistler, the B and D parts don’t really harmonise as the D note at the end of the 7th bar of the B part clashes somewhat with the C# note in the equivalent place of the D part.
It’s a four part tune.

Re: The Duck

Right, missed a few notes. Thanks for pointing that out! More-so what I was trying to get at, is the parts are similar, and this could make (two) nice 2-part tunes. There are a few tunes that have third parts dropped, so could be done here.

Re: The Duck

Well, if Matt Seattle is correct, The Duck started out as a two part tune and some pipe bands might play it that way (often happens with four partners) but it would always be the first two parts. I don’t think I’ve ever heard, in my admittedly limited experience, the third and fourth parts played as a stand alone tune.

Re: The Duck

"There are a few tunes that have third parts dropped", - examples, please ? And while you’re at it, please give further examples of 4 part tunes which are played having their 1st and 2nd parts "dropped", as you’re proposing here.

Posted by .

Re: The Duck

@DonaldK:
Thanks for the info! Admittedly, I didn’t read all of the prior comments. Had just passively listened to the tune in a set with another tune I like (The Snuff Wife), thought "that’s nice, I’ll check it out", and seen the striking resemblance between the different parts. Hadn’t noticed the recording playing 4 distinct parts (they could have been), and figured this could make a good 2-parter.

@Kenny:
3-part tunes made into 2-part tunes:
- Joys of Quebec (2 parts is far more common, it does have a third part though)
- Herbert the Sherbert (3rd part added on after original composition)

Think I have heard a few more, but the names slip my mind at the moment.

4-part tunes made into 2-part tunes:
- refer to DonaldK’s post, apparently The Duck used to be a 2-part tune.

I wasn’t claiming 4-part tunes are commonly dropped down to two parts (it’s probably pretty rare if it does happen), but, this tune seems like a unique example for which you wouldn’t lose the guts of the tune if you removed two parts. It would still tell a similar story.

Re: The Duck

I think the important word is "few" - and not a single Irish example yet.
" this tune seems like a unique example for which you wouldn’t lose the guts of the tune if you removed two parts. It would still tell a similar story." I disagree, and in nearly 40 years of playing the tune since being inspired to learn it after hearing "Ossian", I have never, ever heard it played other than as a 4-part tune.

Posted by .

Re: The Duck

You never asked for an Irish example ;)

And to each their own, you have your taste for the tune, and I’m undecided at this point. All I was pointing out was that it *could* work as a two-parter, which apparently was the original composition anyways. Whether people actually play it as a two-parter or not was irrelevant to my point.

Re: The Duck

"The Session is a community website dedicated to Irish traditional music." - from the homepage.
Best of luck in your sessions with playing "The Jig Of Slurs", "The Atholl Highlanders", "Colonel Fraser", "Farewell To Ireland", "Kiss The Maid Behind The Barrel" or "Spike Island Lasses" as "two-parters".

Posted by .

Re: The Duck

This has gotten off-track. Never said I would attempt any of them at a session as a two-parter. In any event, thank you for your comments Kenny.