McMahon’s hornpipe

Also known as Ginger Dan’s, James McMahon’s, Joe Kearns’s, Ryan’s, Séan Rían’s, Trip To Vermont, The Trip To Vermont.

There are 31 recordings of a tune by this name.

A tune by this name has been recorded together with The Glass Of Beer (a few times), Forget Me Not (a few times) and Loch Gamhna (a few times).

McMahon’s has been added to 4 tune sets.

McMahon's has been added to 47 tunebooks.

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Five settings

X: 1
T: McMahon's
R: hornpipe
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
|: (3GFE |D>GB>G c>AB>G | D>GB>d g>fg>a | b>g (3ggg d>gd>B | c>BA>G F>D (3CB,A, |
D>GB>G c2 (3BAG | D>G (3Bcd g2 g>a | b>gf>g d>gd>B | c>A (3FGA G2 :|
|: g>a |b>g (3ggg a>ge>f | g>bg>d e>d (3Bcd | e>B (3B^AB e>Bg>B | e>dc>B A>GE>G |
D2 (3BAG c>AB>G | D2 (3Bcd g>fg>a | b>g (3ggg d>gd>B | (3cBA F>A G2 :|
X: 2
T: McMahon's
R: hornpipe
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
|: GE |DGBG cABG | DGBd gfga | bg ~g2 dgdB | cBAG FDcA |
DGBG cABG | DGBd gfga | bgfg dgdB | cAFA G2 :|
|: ga |bggb agef | gfgd edBd | eB ~B2 eBgB | edcB AGEG |
DGBG cABG | DGBd gfga | bg ~g2 dedB | cAFA G2 :|
X: 3
T: McMahon's
R: hornpipe
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
|: GE |DGBG cGBG | DGBd gfga | bgga gdBd | (3cBA BG AGEG |
DGBG cGBG | DGBd gfga | bgga gdBd | (3cBA FA G2 :|
|: ga |bg ~g2 agef | gfgf eB ~B2 | eB ~B2 eBgf | (3efe (3dcB AGEG |
DGBG cGBG | DGBd gfga | bgga gdBd | (3cBA FA G2 :|
X: 4
T: McMahon's
R: hornpipe
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
|: (3GFE |D>GB>G c>AB>G | D>GB>d g>fg>a | b>g (3ggg d>Gd>B | c2 (3BAG F>D (3cBA |
D2 B>G c2 B>G | D>G (3Bcd g2 (3fga | b>gd>g B>dG>d | (3cBA (3FGA G2 :|
|: (3fga |b>g (3ggg a>g e2 | g>Bg>d e2 (3Bcd | e>B (3B^AB e>Bg>B | e2 (3dcB A>G (3GFE |
D2 (3BAG c>A (3BAG | D2 (3Bcd g>f (3fga | b>gd>g B>dG>d | c>A (3FGA G2 :|
X: 5
T: McMahon's
R: hornpipe
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
C>B,| A,>DF>D G>EF>D | (3A,A,A, (3DFA d>cd>e | f>ed>B A2 F2 | G>FE>D C2 B,2 |
A,>DF>D G>EF>D | (3A,A,A, (3DFA d>cd>e | f>dd>d A2 FA | GE CE D2 :|
|:d>e | f2 (3ddd e>dB>c | d2 (3BBB B>AF>A | B2 (3FFF A>Fd>c | B>AG>F E>FD>B, |
A,>DF>D G>EF>D | (3A,A,A, (3DFA d>cd>e | f>dd>d A2 F>A | G>EC>E D2 :|

Nineteen comments

“McMahon’s Hornpipe” ~ by Séan Ryan

"The Hidden Ireland:
The First Selection of Irish Traditional Compositions of Séan Ryan"
Compiled by Brian Ryan
Page 20: "McMahon’s Hornpipe" (close to the take given here)

I was surprised this wasn’t here. I won’t be surprised if it is and I missed it. I did do a search, several measure worth and different takes on it…

For those with limitations, you can also play that triplet in bar 4 ~ (3CB,A, ~ up an octave ~ (3cBA…

“Matt Cunningham’s Dance Music of Ireland” ~ another way with it

Dave Mallinson Music
ISBN: 1-899512-45-4
Page 39: "McMahon’s Hornpipe" by Séan Ryan

As a couple of examples of variations, this collection has bars 1 & 5 of the A-part so ~

~ | D>GB>G c>GB>G | ~

Here is their take on bar 4 ~ | C>BA>G F>GE>G | ~

And the first bar of the B-part ~ | b>gg>b a>ge>f | ~

“McMahon’s Hornpipe” ~ by Séan Ryan

~ minus the gingerbread and with a few other options…

X: 1134
T: McMahon’s
C: Séan Ryan
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
R: hornpipe
K: G Major
|: GE |
DGBG cABG | DGBd gfga | bg ~g2 dgdB | cBAG FDcA |
DGBG cABG | DGBd gfga | bgfg dgdB | cAFA G2 :|
|: ga |
bggb agef | gfgd edBd | eB ~B2 eBgB | edcB AGEG |
DGBG cABG | DGBd gfga | bg ~g2 dedB | cAFA G2 :|

“Séan Rían’s / Ryan’s Hornpipe” ~ Bulmer & Sharpley

“Music of Ireland, Volume One”, page 28 #72

K: G Major
|: GE |
DGBG cGBG | DGBd gfga | bgga gdBd | (3cBA BG AGEG |
DGBG cGBG | DGBd gfga | bgga gdBd | (3cBA FA G2 :|
|: ga |
bg ~g2 agef | gfgf eB ~B2 | eB ~B2 eBgf | (3efe (3dcB AGEG |
DGBG cGBG | DGBd gfga | bgga gdBd | (3cBA FA G2 :|

“The Trip to Vermont” ~ invention

Not knowing, or forgetting the acual name for this hornpipe someone slapped this title on this hornpipe "The Trip to Vermont" for a recording in the 70’s made by Seamus Cooley & Johnny McGreevey, possibly another case on not wanting to put ‘gain ainm’ on the sleeve? :-/

It reminds me of the reel he wrote, Shamrock Hill.

“Séan Ryan’s Hornpipe” ~ another way this is noted and passed about

But I’m not adding that to the alternate list, as the recordings section would then be swamped by all the "Séan Ryan’s" there are, including the many that aren’t this particular hornpipe…

It would really annoy you if I added it, wouldn’t it?

Nope! I have the button… ;-)

I could leave it a while and do it when you’re not looking.

Heh, heh, but I’m omnipresent don’t yuh know… :-)

Who did you think was hiding in your closet at night?

Well there you go, C ‘beat’ me to it! I learnt this off a box player at local session a few weeks ago. He plays it after Cronin’s. Thought of posting it but was waiting to catch him again to check a couple of bars!

Well, you and he are sure to have your own take on it? I’d love to see it. I was surprised this wasn’t already here, but now and then I get surprised both sides of that assumption… ;-)

Composer …?

I’ve always known this tune as "Sean Ryan’s" from hearing it on an early recording, but have just come across it as "James McMahon’s" - "composed by James McMahon" on page 115 of "The Hidden Fermanagh" book. There are a few minor variations, but it’s the same tune, for sure, so who did compose it - Ryan or McMahon ?

Posted by .

McMahon’s Hornpipe

Hi Kenny - it’s a mystery indeed! It’s definitely attributed to McMahon (flute player, Rosslea, Co Fermanagh) in ‘Hidden Fermanagh’ (2003) - as you say. I had a quick look through other reference materials:

1960 Sean Ryan & Peter Carberry - (as "Sean Ryan’s")
1974 Bulmer & Sharpley - unattributed (as "Sean Rians")
1976 Jim McKillop, Wind That Shakes the Barley - "trad" (as "McMahon’s)
1977 ‘Whistle and Sing’ - unattributed (as "McMahon’s Hornpipe")
2005 ‘300 Tunes from Mike Rafferty’ - "composed by fiddler Sean Ryan" (as "McMahon’s Hornpipe" and "Trip to Vermont")
2009 Liam Kelly, Sweetwood - (as "James McMahon’s (Sean Ryan’s) Hornpipe")

Very strange.

X: 4 “McMahon’s” C: Sean Ryan

Exercising a few other possibilities with this lovely hornpipe… ;-)

McMahon’s, X:5

Thanks to the community on this site (cheers Rick!) I found the hornpipe I had under the name Joe Kearns’s. The version is in D maj. Taken from ‘A Fine Selection of Over 200 Irish Traditional Tunes for Sessions’, compiled by David Speers with a Forward by Matt Cranitch.