The Old Wheels Of The World reel

Also known as Johnny In The Queer Thing, Kane’s, The Mountain Lark, Rolling Down The Hill, The Wheels Of The World.

There are 10 recordings of a tune by this name.

The Old Wheels Of The World has been added to 4 tune sets.

The Old Wheels Of The World has been added to 100 tunebooks.

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Seven settings

X: 1
T: The Old Wheels Of The World
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmix
|: eAAA eAAA | GEDE G3G | A2AB cBcd | efge dgfg |
eAAA eAAA | GEDE G3G | A2AB cBcd | efge dcBc ||
dggg dggg | eaaa eaaa | dggg gefg | afge dcBc |
dggg dggg | eaaa eaaa | dggg gefg | afge d3d :|
X: 2
T: The Old Wheels Of The World
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
g2 gf|| eABA eABA| GFEF ~G3 E|A3 B cBcd|efge dg (3.f.g.f|
eABA eABA| GFEF ~G3 E|(3.A.c.A AB cBcd| efge dcBc||
dg ~g2 dg ~g2| ea ~a2 ea ~a2| efge defg| af (3.g.f.e .d.cBc|
dg ~g2 dgfg| ea ~a2 ea ~a2| efge defg | afge dg (3.f.g.f||
X: 3
T: The Old Wheels Of The World
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmix
g2 gf||: eAAA eAcA | GE (3EEE ~G3E | A2AB cBcd | ef (3.g.f.e dg(3.f.g.f |
eAAA eAcA | GE (3EEE ~G3E | A2AB cBcd | egge d2 Bc :|
dggg dggg | eaaa eaag | efge defg | af (3.g.f.e .d.cBc|
dggg dgfg | eaaa eaag | efge defg | af (3.g.f.e dg (3.f.g.f :|
X: 4
T: The Old Wheels Of The World
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Ador
eAcA eAcA|~G3F EFGB|A3B cBcd|eaag egdg:|
|:eaag eaaf|efgf efge|afge dA (3Bcd|eaag egdg:|
|:eaag egdg|eaag eaaf|efgf efge|afge dA (3Bcd:|
efgf efgf|eaa^g eaag|efge efgf|afge d2d2|
X: 5
T: The Old Wheels Of The World
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
eA~A2 EABA|~G2GA GED2|EGAB cBcd|efge d2^cd:|
eg~g2 eg~g2|ea~a2 ea~a2|eg~g2 eg~g2|aege d2Bd|
eg~g2 eg~g2|ea~a2 eaag|e2ed ^cdeg|aege d2Bd||
X: 6
T: The Old Wheels Of The World
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
gf|| e.A.AB cBcA| GE ~E2 ~G3 E|A3 B cBcd|efge dg (3.f.g.f|
e.A.AB cBcA| GE E2 ~G3 E|(3.A.c.A AB cBcd| efge dcBc||
dg ~g2 dg ~g2| ea ~a2 ea ~a2| efge d2 (3efg| af (3.g.f.e .d.cBc|
dg ~g2 dg ~g2| ea ~a2 ea ~a2| efge d2 (3efg | afge dg (3.f.g.f||
X: 7
T: The Old Wheels Of The World
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
eA~A2 eA~A2 | GEEF G3E | A3 B cBcd | efge dgfg |
eA~A2 eA~A2 | GEEF G3E | A3 B cBcd | efge d2Bc ||
dg ~g2 dgfg | ea ~a2 eaag | efge defg | afge dcBc |
dg ~g2 dgfg | ea ~a2 eaag | efge defg | afge d3d ||

Twenty-one comments

Lineage

I’m pretty sure that my great grandfather Kane wrote this one. From what I hear, he was a pretty good flute player. Well, granddad, this one’s for your memory!

Stutter

Funny, the repeated notes are un-flutelike. Do you play the flute too? How do you do those, do you roll them?

Rolls

Yes, I am a flute player too. But, do to several mishaps caused by my lack of ability to put rolls in this sheet music, I just left them as repeated notes. I do roll them. I do the G-A-G-F-G thing.

Source: the dance music of Willy Clancy

This appears on Planxty’s "After The Break", but is not listed in the liner notes.

I assume that Liam O’Flynn got it off Willie Clancy, who called it "The Old Wheels Of The World". In O’Neill’s it is entitled "Rolling Down The Hill" and contains some G#s.

You sure?

I think you’re wrong. Dow. I’m sure this appears on "Words & Music" by Planxty as "Old Wheels Of The World" but I’m 99% it’s not on my copy of "After The Break".

Posted by .

Unless my copy was zapped by aliens and given an extra tune at the start of the Chattering Magpie/Lord MacDonald set that doesn’t appear on any other copy of the album, I don’t think I’m wrong - I’m listening to it now and this tune is being played as a solo pipe number as I write. I don’t have Words & Music.

LP or CD?

Lp or CD, Mark? I’m talking about the LP. There’s definitely no "Chattering Magpies/Lord McDonald" or "Bonny Light Horseman" on the LP record I have. If you have the CD, they may be "bonus" tracks. Would that explain it?

Posted by .

Trad!

It’s a traditional thing, Mark - :)

Posted by .

The 78s are even more traditional. Sometimes, you can get a whole set of tunes on each side and, if they’re playing too slow, you can just "crank the handle" of the old gramophone to speed it up.

But doesn’t that make it skip the track? ;-)

After the Break - Lord McDonald/Chattering Magpie

The original release of Planxty`s After The Break did not include Lord McDonald/Chattering Magpie or The Bonny Light Horseman. These tracks were included as bonus tracks on the CD. They were originally released on High Kings Of Tara along with The First Slip/Hardiman the Fiddler (Ador & Bmin)/The Yellow Wattle (one of my all time favourite Planxty tracks, the way Liam O`Flynn plays The Yellow Wattle is sensational!).
Yes, Dow is right ,The Old Wheels of the World does precede Lord McDonald on the track in question.

I wish I could be wrong one day just to break the monotony of it all - I do try you know :-D

Planxty After the Break version

I first heard this tune on the bonus track Lord MacDonlad/The Chattering Magpie set on Planxty’s ‘After the Break’ album. The tune was somehow omitted from the liner notes. Anyway, here is the way Liam O’Flynn plays it on this track (well, pretty close too):

X: 1
T: The Old Wheels of the World (Rolling Down the Hill)
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
R: reel
K: Dmix
g2 gf||: eAAA eAcA | GE (3EEE ~G3E | A2AB cBcd | ef (3.g.f.e dg(3.f.g.f |
eAAA eAcA | GE (3EEE ~G3E | A2AB cBcd | egge d2 Bc :|
dggg dggg | eaaa eaag | efge defg | af (3.g.f.e .d.cBc|
dggg dgfg | eaaa eaag | efge defg | af (3.g.f.e dg (3.f.g.f :|

Single reel setting on “Undertones”?

I think the tune entitled "The Sporting Paddy" that appears on Adrian Barker and Ben Stephenson’s "Undertones" is a version of this tune as a single reel, and not the Hunters Purse as stated in the liner notes of the CD. Their version was learnt from a recording of Sally Sloane (1894-1982) from Parkes, NSW, playing fiddle.

X: 1
T: Rolling Down The Hill
T: The Old Wheels Of The World
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
R: reel
D: Adrian Barker & Ben Stephenson - "Undertones"
K: Ador
eAcA eAcA|~G3F EFGB|A3B cBcd|eaag egdg:|
|:eaag eaaf|efgf efge|afge dA (3Bcd|eaag egdg:|

The B-part seems a little different at first glance, but look again. If you take off the last bar and shift it to the beginning of the B-part you get this:

|:eaag egdg|eaag eaaf|efgf efge|afge dA (3Bcd:|

…which isn’t that far removed from O’Neill’s setting of Rolling Down The Hill which is as follows:

efgf efgf|eaa^g eaag|efge efgf|afge d2d2|…etc.

I don’t know how closely the lads stuck to their source setting (I would guess they followed it as closely as they felt comfortable with playing in their own style) but I’m wondering whether this was a mishearing on the part of Sally Sloane, or a deliberate changing of the tune to suit her taste, or whether she got the tune from some written source.

Recent recording

This tune is the first in a set of three on James Murray’s recent album, The Powellsborough Lassies. He follows it with McGowan’s (McGovern’s) Favourite and The Moving Bogs of Powellsborough.

The Old Wheels Of The World, X:7

As heard at session in Austin, TX