The Spirit Of Whiskey slip jig

Also known as The Spirit Of Whisky.

There are 4 recordings of this tune.

The Spirit Of Whiskey has been added to 19 tunebooks.

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Two settings

X: 1
T: The Spirit Of Whiskey
R: slip jig
M: 9/8
L: 1/8
K: Emin
|: B2 A BGE BGE | B2 A BGE AFD |B/c/BA BGE B2 E | A2 A ABG FED :|
B2 A BcB ABA | G2 A BcB AFD |B2 A BcB A2 ^c | d2 c AB/A/G FED :|
X: 2
T: The Spirit Of Whiskey
R: slip jig
M: 9/8
L: 1/8
K: Amin
|: e2 d ecA ecA | e2 d ecA d2 G |e2 d ecA ecA | ded de/d/c B2 G :|
|: c2 d efe ded | c2 d efe d2 G |c2 d efe def | gaf efe dBG :|

Seventeen comments

"The Spirit Of Whiskey" ~ drams for the musicians and the dancers

Discussion: What One Octave Tunes in D exist?
# Posted on September 19th 2007 by Sarah the Flute

Well, not exactly in ‘D’, but between D & d… Here’s another someone gets joy from and finds useful… This is also played in a minor… I’ve also seen a Dorian transcript but it just doesn’t sound right, in other words, with this, if it were A Dorian, the c’s would all be #… Nah!? ~ But maybe someone will like it that way?


This seems to be a simplified version of Humours of Whiskey

Why do folk keep giving new names to what are only arrangements of existing tunes?

Revealing quote…

"Why do folk keep giving new names to what are only arrangements of existing tunes? "

New names and arrangements of existing tunes? … Seems to be the name of the game in my experience!

When does a tune come into existance? When it’s played on an instrument or when its put down in sheet music? Are they floating around in the air like spirits waiting to be captured?

Spirit of Whiskey—-Humours of Whiskey ?
Cooleys Reel—-Pigeon on the Gate-Paddy on the Turnpike ?

Seems like Cooley just rearranged the notes of an existing tune…???

Which is "correct?" I’ve found that music is a alot like politics… everyone comes from a different angle yet we want to categorize things neatly, when reality is another matter.

There are some who know music only by what the popular recordings are… Some know it by whats played at their local session… some know it from their father or mother or family members, some come at it by accident. Some take a more scholarly approach, scouring old manuscripts and looking at "families" of melodic similarities only to find that "names" of tunes are about as consistant as the weather. For some
its a combination of things. Some players get to the point where they cant remember any names for their tunes.

No, it ain’t ~ Slip Jigs in their nature ~ all in the family ~

Thanks MH, rather you than I, as I’m not in a patient mood right now… This ‘situation’ seems especially true of slip jigs, for various reasons, and I’m not going to go into that here. Spend more time with them…

Check the comments for the previous submission, which is even closer to its sibling than this one ~

After you’ve played a slew of these you’ll start to realize, hopefully… 😏

Follow the dots that ‘slainte’ keeps making if you like making connections… But, nice to have the link, I hadn’t got to it yet. Just so you know, I looked at ‘everything’ with ‘whiskey’ or ‘whisky’ in it before submitting this. That is usual for me, including doing several ‘advanced’ searches with the ABCs and in several keys, just in case. But, I still have a few times missed something and ‘duplicated’. When that happens I usually fess up and tell Jeremy and move the variant to the ‘comments’ of the earlier submission.

Another revealing qoute

‘New names and arrangements of existing tunes? … Seems to be the name of the game in my experience!’

In my experience that is called plagerism. Arrangements - yes I agree that is partly what it’s all about. However making a few obvious changes to a tune then naming it as your own is bad form I would say.

A few years ago a player at our session wrote a nice reel (or a tune came to him, which ever you prefer). A couple of weeks later a fiddler at the session (we were all good friends) presented the tune in jig form with a new name. We gently persuaded him with some carefully chosen comments and laughter that it was not his tune but an adaptation.

Tunes are for everyone to do with as they wish but surely the writer should be left with the small credit of the tune retaining it’s name, Even if he has been dead for a couple of hundred years.

Good catch, yes, they are related, along with a slew of other slip jigs. There is, as mentioned in that link I gave, a very long slip jig that is the earliest transcription or record of it and its relatives anywhere. But, after it, tons of related slip jigs, mostly partials, a part from here, a part from there, et voila, a multi-part slip jig becomes dozens of 2-part slip jigs… I don’t see the problem in that. 2-part tunes work better for dance than huge multi-part tunes. Funny, not feeling put out by that, I like all of them. It doesn’t bother me that some might think the smaller relatives should be removed from the repertoire in favour of the 8 or 9 part earlier forms…

I have known so many source musicians who have by necessity remembered only the partial of a tune, and wanting to continue, have fudged another part. So, you get one part from something they can’t fully remember, and another from their steeped in tradition brain’s inspiration… The ‘tradition’ is full of examples. May the mayhem continue with heart, and with consideration… It’s about the craic, at least for me, and a good tune, wherever the parts came from, is a joy to musicians and dancers…

But, good catch, it would have been linked to eventually…

Some of my own tunes are out there having evolved… That’s cool. I’ve even come across them and at times found them almost unrecognizeable. Is that one of mine? Maybe not, maybe? If it’s fun and calls to my heart I’ll give it a go…

??? Bogman

Calling the duplication is one thing, Id say they are similar tunes no doubt but to say ——

"Why do folk keep giving new names to what are only arrangements of existing tunes?"


"In my experience that is called plagerism. Arrangements - yes I agree that is partly what it’s all about. However making a few obvious changes to a tune then naming it as your own is bad form I would say."

Thats where you opened up some discussion topics:
If you look at "c’"s submissions you will find none of that going on. "c" doesnt need my defense, thats not the reason I replied, but "c" sets a high standard for where tunes came from and if the composer/s is known, then he lets it be known. Unfortunately with many tunes the composer is NEVER known. It may be in a book somewhere with someones name next to it but a little research often shows that it’s not correct.
But no hard feelings bogman, I just don’t want you to be stuck in the bog.

I love the tag ~ ‘bogman’. I wouldn’t want to get on your bad side. I read articles and saw pictures when they dug you up, one ugly sod I wouldn’t want to get on the wrong side of. I really liked the tatoos too, and I am even more fond of bog oak…

Just so you know, if you missed it, this was about finding tunes that were D-limited, between D and d. Yes, they are relatives, but the other one doesn’t fit the bill and would be impossible, without a lot of butchery, to force compfortable into that limited range. This was made for such instruments, but the relationship between itself and others was never in doubt…

Your story reminds me of another, one similar, to do with "Joanie’s Jig". A friend turned it in to a reel, and the composer of the former, a very close friend, was chuffed, thought it was great. And, the woman the jig was composed for, she also liked the reel. We each react differently to similar situations. In our case it was taken with humour and in no way as an affront. To the contrary, it was taken as intended, as a compliment, someone liked the melody and took it elsewhere. It wouldn’t be the first time and it won’t be the last. There are a number of such tunes on here, melodies that serve as reel & jig, polka & slide, jig & waltz ~ etc… Isn’t the variety and mutability of life wonderful, that is one of its proofs. Wouldn’t it be awful if it were all petrified, fixed, starched…

"the One Right Way"

Mind you, I have known those, who will remain unnamed, who thought there was only ever one way to play any given tune, only ‘ONE RIGHT WAY’. These folks are always adamant, inflexible, and more often than not wrong, if what they are saying it the ‘earliest’ source is ‘right’. They weren’t ‘scholars’, they didn’t bother to look back, source or research it. They were just convinced that the way they’d been given it was ‘THE ONE RIGHT WAY’… God bless delusion, but it is a pain in the arse and generally does not make good company ~ dogma with rabies…

Merry Hielander - I think you picked me up wrong there. I wasn’t in any way suggesting that Ceolachan had renamed the tune or any tune, if that’s what’s upset you.

‘Why do folk keep giving new names to what are only arrangements of existing tunes?’ - I had the comments from the Miss Rattray tune in mind where it was revealed that John Doherty had combined three Scott Skinner tunes and called it The Flood of Holm (or something). I know that was a long time ago but we see tunes being renamed when the real name is well known often on contemporary CD’s.

Reel or Jig

Ceolachan, on the reel / jig subject, the tune Paddy’s Leather Breeches is one of these tunes those popularity sent it into hibernation here in the highlands. Last year we started playing a reel version and it seems to have resurfaced. Like you say, all good fun. Of course, we still call it Paddy’s though it does sound different.
A wee question- if I was to post our reel version should it be as a seperate tune or just ABC’s in the comments section of the jig?

Bog On!!!

I’d definitely give it a separate home bog. Folks, including Jeremy, will appreciate that a different time signature is definitely worthy of dots. But, don’t forget to put the links in each tune to the other…

Guess what, I’ve just added another with you in mind. Will you be able to chase up the family member, or slainte. Who’ll be first with it, and will it be an offspring or an ancestor? πŸ˜‰

Thanks Bogman

Sorry to come across as upset. I really wasnt, thanks for the clarification…

A historic source

A very similar setting, but (perhaps appropriately in this context) a fifth off, appears in Peter Kennedy’s "Traditional Dance Music of Britain and Ireland (Slip Jigs & Waltzes)" under precisely this title.

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