The Price of a Pig
This is a really good jig which I originally learnt on the mandolin (at Colm O’Rua’s course in July 2003)
I now play it mainly on the fiddle, with slight changes. Colm’s original version (with banjo triplets) is something close to
|: ede (3AAA A | BAB (3GGG G | ege edB | de^f gfa |
ede (3AAA A | BAB G2 G | ege edB | BAA (3AAA A ::
e^fg aee | e^fg (3aaa a | age edB | de^f gfa |
ede (3AAA A | BAB GBd | ege edB | BAA (3AAA A :|
A slightly different printed version appears in Ho-Ro Gheallaidh (Scottish Fiddler’s Session Tune Book) for which see www.scotlandsmusic.com/session.htm
Shooglenfity have recorded the tune on their album ‘A Whisky Kiss’.
The similarly titled jig ‘The Price of My Pig’ in Matt Crannitch’s Irish Fiddle book and posted as https://thesession.org/tunes/2680 is a different tune
There’s a nice version on bouzouki master Roger Landes’s solo disc _Dragon Reels_ [RMCD-4321; available at http://www.celticmusic.com/roger/], played by Roger and John Whelan. Roger mentions in his notes that it’s also recorded by Cape Breton pipers Jamie MacInnis and Paul MacNeil. I seem to recall that it’s a Nimbus disc of live performances but can’t confirm that. Great driving tune.
The band Aileach sang these words to the tune, more or less, in a different key.
Price of My Pig
In the year twenty nine when the weather was fine
I first made me way to the sweet fair of Trim
For to sell a fine swine it was my design
She was plump fat and fair and complete in each limb
This pig was as mild as a lamb or a child
You could whip her all over the world with a twig
And the truth for to tell, I sold her quite well
Two pounds ten was the price that I got for my pig
I slapped the cash to me thigh saying "I’ll drink by and by"
Down the street I did fly, like a sporting young buck
When a handsome young dame who belonged to the game
She right up to me came to be sure for good luck
She gave me a wink to go in for a drink
Inveigled me up to dance Hennessy’s Jig
Twas at the wheel round she slipped her hand down
And then left me quite scarce of the price of my pig!
Like a man in despair when I missed me fair share
I went tearing me hair seeking her up and down
Every corner and lane I did search out in vain
But a sprig of this dame sure could never be found
Meet her well I will or I surely will kill
This I swear by the hair on Lord Norbury’s wig
Till the day that I die my revenge I will try
On the dame that did rob me the price of me pig
On to Navan next day sure I then took me way
For I heard people say that this dame had been seen
But when I got there, having some time to spare
I wetted me care with a drop of poteen
The first to come in, it was Tatterjack Flynn
And we danced a few steps of a nice double jig
Thinking, aye, be-and-by that I’d soon set me eye
On the dame that did rob me the price of me pig
Oh by Tara by Skreen, by the Bog of Armeen
By John Paddy McGee by the high Hill of Howth
By the Church, by the bell , by the great Book of Kells
Fort to swear anymore, do you know that I’m loath!
If the Lord of Mayo he but heard of me woe
I’m sure he would come in a chaise or a gig
And he’d search the land round till this dame would be found
And be clattered in pound for the price of me pig
Now that it’s so, its homeward I’ll go
My shuttle I’ll throw and from drink I’ll refrain
I’ll stick to me loom while my youth is in bloom
And I’ll never be caught by a strumpet again
Sincerely I swear and I swear I’m sincere
Not a week will go by or a month or a year
That upon that transaction I’ll have satisfaction
All on that bad action that lost me me pig!
This is a nice story, indeed! Quite phylosofic :).
Great version of this wee tune on Dr Angus’s album "A’ Sireadh Spòrs", worth a listen.
Not sure about that…………………..
"The Price Of My Pig" - the song mentioned by "m_gavin" above I heard sung to the tune "Tatter Jack Walsh", not this, although there are similarities in the 2nd part between the 2 jigs.
See discussions at…………..
By a strange coincidence, I picked this tune up "on the fly" last week at a session in Dunkeld, played by fiddler Gillian Frame. I see now that I had one or two notes wrong, but it sits well on the flute.
The Price of Me Pig
I have been searching for this song for years since i heard it sung in the seventies.
Now that i have found it…thanks to Colman O’B and Fionan….see my recent discussion about that…I am interested in any information about it’s origin.
The reference to Lord Norbury’s wig places it in the early nineteenth century, Lord Norbury was the notorious hanging judge. He was Chief Justice of Ireland from 1800 to 1827. he is the man who sentenced Robert Emmett to death. So that means "the year twenty nine" was 1829.
The song is obviously set in Meath …the events take place in Trim and Navan.
But if anyone has any more information I would love to have it