Mairi’s Wedding polka

Also known as Jack Sweeney’s (2), The Lewis Bridal Song, Mairi Bhan, Mairie’s, Mairie’s March, Mairie’s Wedding, Marie’s Wedding, Mhari’s Wedding.

There are 34 recordings of this tune.

This tune has been recorded together with

Mairi’s Wedding appears in 2 other tune collections.

Mairi’s Wedding has been added to 52 tune sets.

Mairi's Wedding has been added to 608 tunebooks.

Download ABC

Eleven settings

1
X: 1
T: Mairi's Wedding
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
f "A"|:"D"A>A AB|de f2|"G"ed Bd|"A7"fe fa|
"D"A>A AB|de f2|"G"ed BG|"A7"A2 A2|
"D"a>a ab|ag f2|"G"ed Bd|"A7"fe f<a|
"D"a>a ab|ag f2|"G"ed BG|1 "A7"A2 A2:|2 "A"AB/c/ d/e/f/g/||
"D"a>a ab|ag f2|"G"ed Bd|"A7"fe f<a|
"D"A>A AB|de fg|"G"a>f "A7"fe|"D"d2 z2||
2
X: 2
T: Mairi's Wedding
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
|:DE DE|GA B2|AG EG|BA Bd|
DE DE|GA B2|AG EG|D2 D2:|
|:dd de|dc^ B2|AG EG|BA Bd2|
dd de|dc^ B2|AG EG|D2 D2:|
# Added by Aoife .
3
X: 3
T: Mairi's Wedding
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
D>E DE|GA B2|AG EG|BA B<d|
D>E DE|GA B2|AG E/D/C|D2 D2:|
d>e de|dc B2|AG EG|BA B<d|
d>e de|dc B2|AG E/D/C|D2 D2:|
# Added .
4
X: 4
T: Mairi's Wedding
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Ador
|:A>^G AB|de f2|ed Bd|fe f<a|
A>A AB|de fg/f/|ed BG|A2 A2|
a>^g ab|ag f2|ed Bd|fe f<a|
a>a ab|ag f2|ed BG|A2 A2:|
a>^g ab|ag f2|ed Bd|fe f<a|
A>F AB|de fg/f/|e>d B/A/G|A2- A2||
5
X: 5
T: Mairi's Wedding
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Ador
A>A AB|de f2|ed Bd|fe f2|
A>A AB|de f2|ed BG|A2 A2||
a>a ab|ag f2|ed Bd|fe f<a|
a>a ab|ag f2|ed BG|A2 A2||
6
X: 6
T: Mairi's Wedding
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Ddor
G/E/|D>D DE|GA B2|AG EG|BA B2|
D>D DE|GA B2|AG E[CG]|D2 D||
B/c/|d>d de|dc B2|AG EG|BA B<d|
d>d de|dc B2|AG E[CG]|D2- D||
7
X: 7
T: Mairi's Wedding
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
|:D>D DE|GA B2|AG EG|BA B<d|
D>D DE|GA B2|AG EC|D2 D2:|
|:d>d de|dc B2|AG EG|BA B<d|
d>d de|dc B2|AG EC|D2 D2:|
8
X: 8
T: Mairi's Wedding
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
"D"A>A AB|de f2|"G"ed Bd|"A"fe f<a|
"D"A>A AB|de f2|"G"ed BG|"A"A2 A2||
"D"a>a ab|ag f2|"G"ed Bd|"A"fe f<a|
"D"a>a ab|ag f2|"G"ed BG|"A"A2 A2||
9
X: 9
T: Mairi's Wedding
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Ador
B|:A>B AB|de f2|e>d Bd|fe f<a|
A>A AB|de f2|e>d BG|1 A2 AB:|2 A2 Af||
|:a>a ab|ag f2|e>d Bd|fe f<a|
a>a ab|ag f2|e>d BG|1 A2 Af:|2 A2 AB||
10
X: 10
T: Mairi's Wedding
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Ddor
|:D>D DE|GA Bc/B/|AG E>G|BA Bd|
D>D DE|GA Bc/B/|AG EC|D2 D2:|
|:d>^c de|dc Bc/B/|AG E>G|BA Bd|
d>^c de|dc Bc/B/|AG EC|D2 D2:|
11
X: 11
T: Mairi's Wedding
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Ador
|:A>A AB|de fg/f/|ed B>d|fe fa|
A>A AB|de fg/f/|ed BG|A2 A2:|
|:a>^g ab|ag fg/f/|ed B>d|fe fa|
a>^g ab|ag fg/f/|ed BG|A2 A2:|

Thirty-seven comments

Words to "Mairi’s Wedding"

"Mairi’s Wedding" is a Scottish song I’ve heard in a number of places. Van Morrison sang it on the album he did with the Chieftains.

Chorus (A part):
Step we gaily on we go
Heel for heel and toe for toe
Arm in arm and row on row
All for Mairi’s wedding.

Verse (B part):
Over hillways up and down
Myrtle green and bracken brown
Past the shieling through the town
All for sake of Mairi.

Chorus

Red her cheeks as rowans are
Bright her eye as any star
Fairest of them all by far
Is my darlin’ Mairi.

Chorus

Plenty herring, plenty meal
Plenty peat to fill her creel
Plenty bonny bairns as weel
That’s our toast for Mairi.

Chorus

Posted by .

There’s also a specific Scottish Country dance for this tune and song.

Zina

Mairi’s wedding

You’d get some pretty strange looks if you started playing this in a session anywhere in Scotland. This particular song is more associated with the "tartan" end of Scottish tourism, rather than traditional music. It’s one of the songs which was hammered into school-kids at school music lessons , thereby putting them off traditional Scottish music for life. Billy Connolly has a great sketch about this on a live double LP he recorded in the late 70s/early 80s, before he became famous - a lot of us could identify with that story only too well!
Having said that, I would have to admit it could work well as a polka, but please, forget about the words.

Posted by .

Maries Wedding (polka)

Very similar to "Mairies Wedding", also on this site as https://thesession.org/tunes/706.

I suggest that in the "B" part, dcB2 should read d=cB2, if the key is D major, otherwise the key of G (1#) is more suitable.
Trevor

Maries wedding

I agree with above - wrong key - should be G, one flat.

Posted .

Again

soeey - one sharp, i.e. F#

Posted .

More of a March than a Polka, I think…

Though hopelessly over-played, it’s still a nice tune…

It’s a March

Not a polka…

Good recording

I have yet to find a good recording of this tune. It’s usually played in a horrible american fashion: everything rolled together with no swing :(

Posted by .

The Corries

Slightly reluctant to contribute to this for the reasons stated above, but if it is a song you like , then the best version I could recommend would be by "The Corries". I’m sure it’s on several of their recordings - try "Foot Stompin" website, or do a "Google" search for "Corries".

Posted by .

Mind you……..

Good enough for Noel Hill………..

Posted by .

Rhythm isn’t right

Someone should repost this tune with correct notes and rhythm

Mairie’s Wedding clean abcs

X: 1
T: Mairie’s Wedding
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: G
D>E DE|GA B2|AG EG|BA B<d|
D>E DE|GA B2|AG E/D/C|D2 D2:||
d>e de|dc B2|AG EG|BA B<d|
d>e de|dc B2|AG E/D/C|D2 D2:||

Posted .

Mairi’s Wedding

Having heard Mari’s Wedding in a session set, one follow-on tune I know, but can’t find the title?

Would appreciate any members suggested follow-on tune to this Polka.

Thanks, john T

"Mairi’s Wedding" ~ Wikipedia & a few YouTubes too

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mairi’s_Wedding

The Irish have ago ~

Van Morrison - "Marie’s Wedding" - live
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xbJqUsM5Abk


The Chieftains w/ Van - "Marie’s Wedding"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5jYY4ax7OrE


The Clancy Brothers & Tommy Makem - "Marie’s Wedding"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ymd6k949Rkc


Cape Breton’s Rankins ~

The Rankin Family_Mairi’s wedding
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uJZsqdXKkzU


Scotland ~

Jimmy Shand - "Mairi’s Wedding"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BCptMS8IZvA


Northern Ireland ~

"Mairi’s Wedding"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RRpLfLurI5s

Danced at Portadown Summer Party, County Armagh, 20th May, 2009

Mairi’s Wedding + follow on tune?

Thank you everyone for your response. One or two of the first tunes suggested are very similar to the tune I play, but thanks for the great tunes you’ve suggested.
I remember the band that played the version I’m looking for, from the around the seventies named
" The Orwell String Band " from my neck of the woods in Suffolk UK.
Tom Montgomery was the Elder Irish Fiddler, and one of the younger was Pete Croft the Melodeon Player.
A great session dance band. If anyone remembers them please let me know.
Thanks, John T

I’ve always really liked this tune and think it is probably getting a bit of an unfair press in some of the comments, although no one hammered it in to me at school which probably helps. Anyway sticking with a Scottish theme I’ve often rolled into anyone of these from a stint with Mairi
http://abcnotation.com/tunePage?a=trillian.mit.edu/~jc/music/abc/mirror/corneymusers/HIROADV2/0000
https://thesession.org/tunes/3640 (Dr Dow’s version)
https://thesession.org/tunes/11696
All good for a bit of the old gay Gordon’s or some such hoofing.

Marie’s Wedding

This a fantastic Scottish Country dance, not as popular as it once was. Even danced it at my wedding in my wedding gear, very hot work with on an extremely hot July day.

Blackbear March/Polka ?

I have a recording from the Suffolk UK Band " Orwell String Band " from the 1970s. One set they play is
Lucy Campbell/Marie’s Wedding/Blackbear in that order. I would like the sheet music and midi to "Blackbear"
but cannot find it on search. Can anyone put light on this tune ?

Thanks John T.

Blackbear March/Polka ?

Thank you Nigel for your reply. That’s not the one I play. I reckon I’ve got the name wrong, although another musician I mentioned named it Blackbear also. I’ll keep searching.
Thanks again, John T.

Re: Mairi’s Wedding

John T was asking about The Orwell String Band. I formed the band with John Chandler, Pete Croft and Sean Halpenny and gave the band its name. Tom Montgomery joined later - he taught me to play the fiddle. The follow on tune that John mentions may have been The Black Bear which I recall that we played.

Re: Mairi’s Wedding

An arrangement for fiddle ensemble (2 fiddle lines, cello, and chords) is available in Weaver MacFarlane’s Choon Book, a free download from cracklingsmarts.com.

Audio file of this arrangement is available on Soundcloud (just search for Weaver MacFarlane).

Re: Mairi’s Wedding

The last one isn’t Gmaj, it’s Ddor or Dmix

Posted by .

Re: Mairi’s Wedding

Tisn’t - G maj ‘tis! Just because it finishes on a D doesn’t make it D anything! It’s what’s called a suspension! I love ‘em! Can’t bear being forced back to finish on the keynote. Suspensions rule, Ok! Some of the tunes used for Burns’ songs even finish on the second note of the scale: live with it.
When played as a dance tune it is often played AABB, wheras the song goes ABAB, finishing with a further chorus (A tune).

Re: Marie’s Wedding

Would love to have the sheet music for van Morrision’s version introduction.

Re: Mairi’s Wedding video from Ohio

Our little band turns Mairi’s wedding into a 32-bar tune so that we can play it for contradances. And we sing it. We are very happy with the liveliness of the result. I humbly submit it here. (Skip to 1:57 in the video for Mairi’s Wedding.) (And yes, I’m well aware that our sound is not at all Celtic-sounding.) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v78osMKnFMY&feature=youtu.be&t=117

Re: Mairi’s Wedding

Seumus MacNeill (1917-1996) established the College of Piping in Glasgow. He was also co founder and long-term editor of The Piping Time. In the January issue of 1957, he suggested pipers should take these three resolutions:
1stly)
Encourage each other, regardless of proficiency or professionality. "All piping is good piping" (a phrase to herald a new era indeed: viz. not to be disparaging of a lesser player’s efforts but be supportive)

2ndly)
Make bad instrument makers, bad instruments and bad reeds history.

3rdly) -and here let me quote in full-

"Thirdly, a special plea for no comic songs on the bagpipes. Most pipers would be indignant if it were suggested that they prostituted the instrument in this way, and vet this is exactly what many do. It is not necessary to play Nellie Dean on the pipes in order to be an offender, for any tune which is not in character with the great instrument is quite out of order. Mairi’s Wedding, The Old Rustic Bridge and many other fine pieces are comic songs when played on the pipes."

This was 65 years ago and the music scene in Scotland has seen quite a few revolutions, the wheels are still turning, I think it is safe to reclaim Mairi’s Wedding today!
…at least in some contexts!…
Contextual awareness is very important in this game (itm) where people who opperate outside the realm of (live, genuine* -*possibly non "commercial"- vernacular music) are saturated with confusing signals and diehard clichés from the media and their social environment all the time: first and foremost those about regional/national identity -including their own.
For example, when you play this type of music in the street for all and anyone to enjoy (busking with a repertoire of itm tunes as I am prone to do), you realise that there are three types of people, sorry four:
1. the (seemingly) indifferent;
2. the ones who think you’re wild funny (they think you’re a cliché, they don’t realise it is the fun they poke at you which is totally tired and clichéed),
3. The misty-eyed ones who are proud of ‘their’ music (they beat their chest demonstratively, without realising it is a Galician or French tune that caught their attention!) and finally,
4. the ones who simply appreciate a tune for its own sake (for its power, beauty, mirth or melancoly).
-I wish they were all like that (4) cause they are so much easier to deal/communicate with!
But yeah, it’s a mine field.
I just want to wish good luck to "Mairi" cause it’s a nice cheerful wee number!

Re: Mairi’s Wedding

*Seumas -apologies.