The Croppies’ March polka

Also known as A Maire Cad Ta Ort?, Baile Bheachain, The Banks Of Enverness, The Banks Of Inverness, The Banks Of The Inverness, The Ceanngulla, The Croppies’March, Croppy’s, Croppy’s Retreat, The Croppy’s Retreat, Freedom For Ireland, Heather On The Hill, The Heather On The Hill, Ireland Forever, The Kerryman’s Daughter, Lark’s Neck, The Lark’s Neck, Lark’s Nest, The Lark’s Nest, Molly What Ails You?.

There are 20 recordings of a tune by this name.

A tune by this name has been recorded together with The Bird In The Bush (a few times).

The Croppies’ March has been added to 2 tune sets.

The Croppies' March has been added to 49 tunebooks.

Download ABC

Nine settings

X: 1
T: The Croppies' March
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
|: B |A>B AF | AB d>e | fa ef | dB Bd |
A>B AF | AB d>e | fa ef | d2- d :|
e |fa a>f | gb bg | fa ef | dB Bd |
fa af | gb b>c' | d'c'- c'a | b2- b>c' |
d'b c'a | b>a fe | fa ef | dB Bd |
A>B AF | AB d>e | fa ef | d2- d |]
X: 2
T: The Croppies' March
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
|: E |D>E DB, | DE GA | Bd AB/A/ | GE EG/E/ |
D>E DB, | DE GA | Bd AB/A/ | G2 G :|
A |Bd dB | ce ec | Bd AB/A/ | GE ED |
B/c/d dB | c/d/e e>f | g/f/e fd | e2 ef |
ge fd | e/f/e/d/ BA | Bd/B/ AB/A/ | GE EG |
D>E DB, | DE GA | Bd AB/A/ | G2 G |]
X: 3
T: The Croppies' March
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
|: A>B AF | AB de | fa ef/e/ | dB gB |
A>B AF | AB de | fa ef/e/ | d2 d2 :|
|: fa ag/f/ | gb ba | fa ef/e/ | dB gB |
A>B AF | AB de | fa ef/e/ | d2 d2 :|
# Added by protz .
X: 4
T: The Croppies' March
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
M: 4/4
|: dB |A>B AF AB de | fa ef d/e/f/d/ Bd |\
A>B AF AB de | fa ef d2 :|
de |fa ag/f/ gb ba/g/ | fa ef d/e/f/d/ BA |\
fa ag/f/ gb bc' | d'c' ba b2 ba |
fa ag/f/ gb ba/g/ | fa ef d/e/f/d/ Bd |\
A>B AF AB de | fa ef d2 d2 |]
X: 5
T: The Croppies' March
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
|: A>B AF | AB de | fa ef/e/ | dB gB |
A>B AF | AB de | fa ef/e/ | d2 d2 :|
|: fa ag/f/ | gb ba | fa ef/e/ | dB gB |
[1 fa ag/f/ | gb ba fa ef/e/ | d2 d2 :|
[2 A>B AF | AB de | fa ef/e/ | d2 d2 |]
X: 6
T: The Croppies' March
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
M: 4/4
ABAF ABde | (3fga ef (dB)Bd | ABAF ABde | (3fga (ef) dcdB |
ABAF ABde | (3fga ef dBBd | ABAF ABde | baef Td2 d2 ||
f>a (3.a.a.a g>b (3.b.b.b | afef dB B2 | f>a (3.a.a.a g>bbc' | d'c'ba b2 b2 |
f>a (3.a.a.a g>b (3.b.b.b | afef dBBd | ABAF ABde | baef Td2 d2 |]
X: 7
T: The Croppies' March
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
|: AB AF | AB de | f/g/a ef | dB Bd |
AB AF | AB de |[1 f/g/a ef | dc dB :|[2 ba ef | d2 d2 ||
f>a .a/.a/.a | g>b .b/.b/.b | af ef |
[1 dB B2 | f>a .a/.a/.a | g>b bc' | d'c' ba | b2 b2 :|
[2 dB Bd | AB AF | AB de | ba ef | d2 d2 |]
X: 8
T: The Croppies' March
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
M: 4/4
FG |A3 F (AB)d(e | f)dg(f e)dBd | A2 (AF) ABde | f(gef) d2 (dB) |
A(BAF) ABde | fT(d d2) edBd | A2 (AF) ABd(e | f)gec d2 ||
(de) |faa(f g)bbg | a(fef) dT(B B2) | faa(f g)bb(g |a)fef d2 (de) |
faa(f g)bbg | afe(f d)BBd | A2 (AF) ABd(e | f)gec d2 |]
X: 9
T: The Croppies' March
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
FG |A2- AF | AB de | fd gf | ed Bd |
A2 AF | AB de | fg ef | d2 dB |
AB AF | AB de | fd d2 | ed Bd |
A2 AF | AB de | fg ec | d2 ||
|: de |fa af | gb bg | af ef |
[1 dB B2 | fa af | gb bg |af ef | d2 :|
[2 dB Bd | A2 AF | AB de | fg ec | d2 |]

Sixteen comments

“The Croppies’ March” ~ polka & march

This one is played both ways, and I’ve given it here in 3 keys with some variations ~ K: D, G, and including as I had originally heard it, in C…

“Waifs and Strays of Gaelic Melody”, 1922 ~ Captain Francis O’Neill

#s 60 & 61 (2/4 & 4/4)

"The term "Croppy" grew from the custome of the English and Scotch reformers in 1795, who cut their hair short. The same custom was adopted by the reformers in Ireland; and hence all those who wore their hair short were denominated "Croppies", and were the marked objects of government vengeance. In truth, clipped hair constituted secondary evidence of treason, and was sufficient to cause the arrest and ill treatment of any person daring enough to adopt it."

“Requiem for the Croppies” by Seamus Heaney

The pockets of our greatcoats full of barley …
No kitchens on the run, no striking camp …
We moved quick and sudden in our own country.
The priest lay behind ditches with the tramp.
A people hardly marching … on the hike …
We found new tactics happening each day:
We’d cut through reins and rider with the pike
And stampede cattle into infantry,
Then retreat through hedges where cavalry must be thrown.
Until … on Vinegar Hill … the final conclave.
Terraced thousands died, shaking scythes at cannon.
The hillside blushed, soaked in our broken wave.
They buried us without shroud or coffin
And in August … the barley grew up out of our grave.

http://www.irishcultureandcustoms.com/Poetry/SeamsHeaney.html

‘Croppies’ ~ used to describe Irish reboes in the 1798 insurrection, see above, hair cropped in imitation of the French revolutionaries of 1789…

‘Vinegar Hill’ ~ County Wexford, June 21, 1798, a major defeat for the Irish rebels…

“The Ceanngulla Polka” ~ Johnny O’Leary

Pages 95 - 96, tune #166:

"Johnny O’Leary of Sliabh Luachra:
Dance Music from the Cork-Kerry Border"
Compiled & edited by Terry Moylan
The Lilliput Press, Dublin, 1994
ISBN: 1-874675-42-2

“The Croppies’ March” ~ Scottish origin?

I would like to be able to say I was sure ‘The Croppies March’ was ‘Scottish’ but can’t, but that is my suspicion. I’ve none of my usual sources on hand and the libraries of Edinburgh will have to wait for now, too many other concerns at the moment. Hello ‘Kenny’?, ‘Conan’? anybody out there? Can anyone else trace it back to a source?

I also realize that my familiarity and history with “Salmon Tails” might have influenced final decisions on my notation here of “The Croppies March”. I’ve played both in a number of ways. I don’t have my copy of “Waifs & Strays” with me but I have a couple of ABCs supposedly taken from that O’Neill collection. The two from "Waifs" (a great collection) are the same thing, just divided differently (see first bar examples below). They have the same difference from how I give it for the B-part. I prefer the longer second ending, whatever its source, liking long penultimate-like second endings as a general rule, great for dance. I don’t have my recordings of the piper Patsy Touhey to check either, but here is a composite from the two "Waifs" transcriptions:

Source: Francis O’Neill: "Waifs and Strays" no. 60 & 61
#60 ~ 4/4 ~ | A3 B A2 F2 |
#61 ~ 4/4 ~ | A>BAF ABde |

L:1/8
R:March
K:D
|: dB |
A>B AF AB de | fa ef d/e/f/d/ Bd | A>B AF AB de | fa ef d2 :|
| de |
fa ag/f/ gb ba/g/ | fa ef d/e/f/d/ BA | fa ag/f/ gb bc’ | d’c’ ba b2 ba |
fa ag/f/ gb ba/g/ | fa ef d/e/f/d/ Bd | A>B AF AB de | fa ef d2 d2 ||

One early version of this tune was known in Scotland as "The Banks of Inverness". It can also be found in Ryan’s Mammoth Collection as "The Banks of Enverness".

I known it like this:

X: 2
T: G.A.2
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
R: polka
K: Dmaj
|: A>B AF | AB de | fa ef/e/ | dB gB |
A>B AF | AB de | fa ef/e/ | d2 d2 :|
|: fa ag/f/ | gb ba | fa ef/e/ | dB gB |
A>B AF | AB de | fa ef/e/ | d2 d2 :|

Posted by .

|: B |\ :-/

I have been trying to do a minor cleanup of the ABCs but as yet it is not letting me do so… I’ll be back… ;-)

protz ~ as shown previously, and in most situations I’ve found this popular tune, the return to the last 4 measures of the A-part in the B-part is only as a second ending, using your notation:

X: 5
T: G.A.2
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
R: polka
K: Dmaj
|: A>B AF | AB de | fa ef/e/ | dB gB |
A>B AF | AB de | fa ef/e/ | d2 d2 :|
|: fa ag/f/ | gb ba | fa ef/e/ | dB gB |
[1 fa ag/f/ | gb ba fa ef/e/ | d2 d2 :|
[2 A>B AF | AB de | fa ef/e/ | d2 d2 |]

Relatives ~

https://thesession.org/tunes/1640
https://thesession.org/tunes/2903
https://thesession.org/tunes/4774

& "The Irish R. M." ~ a 4-part take on it:
https://thesession.org/tunes/5119

This latter one I’ve heard from a number of different ceili bands. I wonder which came first, 2 parts, 3 or 4? My thanks to Alistair / No Cause for Alarm for reminding me of this larger take on it and for offering up another version in the ‘comments’ for that 4-parter…. ‘c’

X: 5

The "X: 5" version, the last one, is essentially the setting of "Freedom for Ireland" played here in San Diego, California. Thanks for the very interesting tune histories!

X: 6 & 7, 8 & 9 ~ “Molly What Ails You?” ~ O’Neill 1903 & 1907

B: "O’Neill’s Music of Ireland: 1850 Melodies", 1903, No. 1413, page 262, tune #1413
X: 6 ~ given as 4/4 in O’Neill, 1903
X: 7 ~ adjusted to 2/4

B: "O’Neill’s Dance Music of Ireland: 1001 Gems", 1907, page 117, tune #652
X: 8 ~ given as 4/4 in O’Neill, 1907
X: 9 ~ adjusted to 2/4

Another hidden polka from the O’Neill collections… 8-)