Johnny O’Leary’s Slide
Sorry about the title! Aliens at work again, I guess.
Anyway, I was watching RTE last night, when all of a sudden, who should appear but one Paddy Cronnin.
Now Paddy is a fine, fine Fiddle player & he was chatting about one of my all time heroes Johnny Leary, when he suddenly struck off with a slide that he had learned from Johnny!
It was a real cracker but I’d no tape machine handy, so I listened carefully to it & then rushed off to make notes & these are the results of my scribbles.
It started off like one or two other fairly common slides but then in the 3rd bar there was this lovely we turn which was the real ‘hook’ for me.
I’ve been through Johnny’s book ‘Off Sliabh Luachra’ but don’t see it in there.
I’m hoping this if fairly close to the tune & I also hope that someone knows this tune here & can tidy it up for me, or could go knock Paddy’s door & ask him for the notes!
Paddy comes up here to Co. Antrim, to Cushendall every once in a while anyway, to visit relatives, so if I have no luck here, I’ll corner him the next time I see him!
Up Kerry Music!
Sorry, I think the fourth bar should look like this - f instead of B:
|G2 B d2 B A2 f g2 f|
I think you will find that this is a polka. I am in the middle or rewriting it and will post ABC shortly.
My comment should have read that it is a Polka also. I’m considering putting the two together as a set.
“Tralee Gaol” / “As I Went Out Upon the Ice”
Also played in alternate keys and usually not notated as you’ll find it here, meaning the 1/16th and 1/32nd notes…
“Johnny O’Leary’s” ~ following this transcription, 12/8 into 2/4:
T: Johnny O’Leary’s
|: B/d/ |
eA AB/d/ | ed Bd | eA AB/A/ | G>A Bd |
eA AB/d/ | BA/B/ dB | BG/B/ dB | A3 :|
|: B/d/ |
ef/g/ a>b | ag ed | Bc/d/ e>f | ga fg |
ea a>b | ag ed | BA/B/ d>B | A3 :|
Thanks for that Ceolachan. Must admit though, I think I prefer it as a Slide. What came first I wonder? - that old Chicken & Egg thingy! Doesn’t really matter of course!
” - that old Chicken & Egg thingy! - ” ~
Doesn’t matter Ptarm, me saying so after having hornpiped a well known reel ("Hornpipe on the Turnpike") ~ if it works either way it works either way, and if it happens to work for just the one person who’s right is it to take that little pleasure away from them, not me… However, the A-part feels a bit imcomplete, almost as if the person playing it or remembering it was getting a couple of different melodies confused. Structurally, following a few of the ‘norms’ of the form, it just doesn’t flow as well as it could, doesn’t agree with itself or those form norms completely, being a little ‘incoherent’? This also marks it out as not being of much age, neither belonging to the earlier ways of things or being around long enough to wear off the disagreements and self-consciousness of youth. ;-) That’s the sort of thing where when you’re playing you feel a kind or "Oops!" or a slight discomfort in where it has chosen to go, slipping rather than sliding… I’ll give it a bit of time and if I come up with something still respecting this transcription but feeling a bit more "Umph!" than "Oops!" I’ll come back and leave the ABCs here in the ‘Comments’…
As to ‘chicken or egg’, which obviously does matter with so many folks are caught up in such questions, it shouldn’t stop anyone from the ‘fun’ of the egg or the chicken ~ poached, soft or hard boiled, scrambled, fried, fricasseed, etc… ~ and not wanting to take from the pleasures of that line of inquiry either, those with an interest in history and context ~
it was a polka first ~
speaking from ‘experience’, however limited and subjective that might be. I’m one of those interested in such things, like the multi-layers and many facets of poetry ~ history and context, rhyme-rhythm-imagery-language, but it has never spoiled the enjoyment of any poem at the basic level.
I spent a lot of time playing and dancing to polkas and slides, since the 70s if a general time frame is required, including collecting them and playing with and dancing to some very into-that-sort-of-music musos, including from and in that particular area of the country, including Mr. O’Leary his-self ~ family and friends ~ as well as going blind and tinnitus plagued trawling through old and new collections, in print and recorded… In your particular take on this melody, or Paddy Cronin’s as you heard it, understood it and transcribed it, I’ve not heard it in this form previously, not that that means anything… Besides, a living tradition continues to borrow and evolve, and sometimes mutate ~ sometimes akin to the horror genre meaning…subjectively speaking… :-P But, I’d love to be directed to any recording where this is the outcome, even more so if it were Johnny, as my interest and curiosity remains ever constant…
The more I play it the more familiar it becomes ~
K: A Dorian (I forgot to make that ‘adjustment’ earlier, sorry…)
|: f g2 f |
e2 A ABd e2 d B2 d | e2 A ABA G2 A Bcd |
e2 A AB/c/d e2 d B2 d | BAB d2 B A2 :|
|: A AB/c/d |
efg a2 b a2 g e2 d | Bcd e2 f g2 a f2 g |
ee/f/g a2 b a2 g e2 d | B>AB d2 B A2 :|
K: E Dorian
|: d c2 d |
B2 E EFA B2 A FGA | B2 E EFE D2 E FGA |
BEE EF/G/A BAA AFA | FEF A2 F E2 :|
|: E FGA |
Bcd e2 f fed B2 A | F2 A B2 c d3 cBA |
B2 d e2 f e2 d cBA | FGA d2 F E2 :|
I just remembered I’ve some old note about with lesser known slides on them. I’ll dig them out and see if I can find any other relatives to this one, slide or polka. Sadly what I have of my work and collection is only partial at the moment… I also should have given a simple alternate take on the penultimate beat just above, keys of A & E Dorian, tieing the A2 with the A, the E2 with the E and making the equivalent A3 / E3:
~ A2- :| -A // ~ E2- :| -E
“Barrack Hill” / “The Cat Jumped Into the Mouse’s Hole”
I thought this seemed familiar but somehow not quite what I remembered, polkas aside… And a version is already here on site, after a bit more looking…
Good ol’ Henrik has it too, in a form more familiar to me, #62 with the first verse of the ditty:
"This file contains 64 slides and single jigs (#1 - #64)."
Careful ceolachan, please don’t give my ABC too much credibility.
I only heard the tune twice before dashing off into another room to scribble down the notes, as I remembered them.
As it was that skip in the first half of the tune that captured my imagination, my mind was completely focused on trying to remember that, as best I could, so the 2nd half may well be way off the mark!
However, I do feel it was worth submitting, if it leads to us tracking down the correct version, cause it is a neat tune.
Ah Ha - excellent work. I’m surprised I got close enough for you to recognise it.
Now I’ll have to track down the H. Hamilton, S. Ceagh, C. O’Drisceoil recording & hear how the local guys play it.
Huh, just found the first part only, of this tune, played by Mrs Ellen O’Dwyer on the Irish Traditional Concertina Styles LP:
Track 2 - on the LP is just called: No Title
“Three Hand Jig”
Hey Ptarm, guess what, someone else up your way has it recorded, and in your mode ~ quick, check your collection:
Cathal McConnell ~ "Lough Erne’s Shore"
I must be ill, I’m loving this…
P.S. I love that recording and the playing of Ellen O’Dwyer, but I haven’t a lot of my stuff here, including all my old LPs. Would you be so kind as to notate Ellen’s take on this and give us the ABCs, wherever most appropriate, or come back with the version, after you’ve done the listening, you most like, what fits your mood. I’d love to see it and play through it. There is another transcription ascribed to the playing of Julia Clifford which some folks call "Julia Clifford’s Slide". I’ll have to see if that is here on site or somewhere in the piles around me…
a friend in passions ~ ‘c’
Good work ‘c’. Aye that’s it again for sure.
Unfortunately Ellon only played the 1st half of this tune on that recording Concertina LP, before launching into Eileen O’Riordan’s.
Anyway this is as close as I can get to her first half. Of course she is playing an old C or Bb machine so I changed the key, but hopefully it’ll get you started anyway.
T: Ellen O’Dwyer’s Fancy
e2 A AGA e2 f g2 e|d2 G GFG BAB dcd|
e2 A AGA e2 f g2 e|1 d2 B G2 B A3 Agf:|2 d2 B G2 B A3 A2 d||
As a single jig:
"O’Neill Dance Music of Ireland: 1001 Gems"
Captain Francis ONeill, 1907
As a slide:
"Traditional Irish Music: Music for the Sets: The Yellow Book"
Na Píobairí Uilleann, 1995
Thanks for the Ellen O’Dwyer parcial, which rings other bells…
Just noticed Ptarm, I’m assuming for the half tune above you meant "R: slide"? And yes, I have at least two takes on it so far… I’m struggling with the great question, slide or strathspey, which comes first? Hmmmmmm? I think I’ll go have a brew and then decide…
Yes ‘c’ - Sorry. A Slide it is. Well, after all, yesterday ‘was’ a busy day!
“Barrack Hill” ~ Just to pull all this together ~
As my badly misfiring brain cells tend to do, it seems, looking over the bits I’ve manage to pull out and hunt down, that this very popular melody evolved in this order ~
SIngle Jig (slide) ~ Strathspey ~ Highland Fling ~ March/Polka
The ‘song’ is in the middle there somewhere…
I, personally, love ‘em all…
The Cat Jumped Into The Mouse’s Hole And Didn’t Come Out Till Morning
One of the slides the Bonny Men play
12/8 but written in 6/8
You’ve written it in 6/8, but said it’s 12/8… not quite right…
Three Hand Jig, X:5
Setting 5 is a Fermanagh variant, from Cathal McConnell’s "On Lough Erne’s Shore" https://thesession.org/recordings/1231
His notes on the tune:
"The Three Hand Jig is a dance tune from Trannish Island on Lough Erne. I learned it from Tommy Gunn, the fiddler from Derrylin. He told me that the dance involved two men and a woman."