Kopanitsa slip jig

Also known as Kopenitsa, Kopenitsia.

There are 2 recordings of this tune.

Kopanitsa has been added to 24 tunebooks.

Download ABC

One setting

X: 1
T: Kopanitsa
R: slip jig
M: 9/8
L: 1/8
K: Bmin
A2 B2 B2A f4|ed ef ef/e/d B4|
ed ef ef/e/d dc Bc|dB cA B2f B4:|
|:de ed ef/e/d dc Bc|de ed f2e dc BA|
de ed ef/e/d dc Bc|dB cA B2f B4:|
|:ef fd ef/e/d e2 f2|ef fd ef/e/d de/d/ cB|
ef fd ef/e/d e2 f2|ef fd ef/e/d de/d/ cB|
de ec de/d/c d2 e2|de ec de/d/c cd/c/ BA|
de ec de/d/c d2 e2|f/e/d cA B2f B4:|
|:ed cA B/c/BA cd e2|ed cA B/c/BA cd e2|
ed cA B/c/BA cd e2|f/e/d cA B2f B4:|
|:AB Bd c/B/Bd cB ef|AB Bd c/B/Bd cA B2|
AB Bd c/B/Bd cB ef|1 AB Bd c/B/Bd cA B2:|2 AB Bd c/B/Bd cB A2||
|:cd/c/ _Bc/B/ A2G c2 BA|cd/c/ _Bc/B/ A2G AB cd|
cd/c/ _Bc/B/ A2G c2 BA|cd/c/ _Bc/B/ GAB Az A2:|
# Added by Mario .

Fifty-four comments

Well, in fact, it’s not a Slip Jig, but a something for the lovers of Balkan music. It’s a Bulgarian Kopanitsa and it’s in 11/8 time, so it’s not for the faint of heart.

The rhythm is 2-2-3-2-2, or, step-wise, quick-quick-slow-quick-quick.

Should be played at around 185-195 (crotchets). This version comes from the playing of Efrén López (L’Ham de Foc).

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Then post it on a Balkan music website where it’s more likely you’ll find Balkan music lovers who’ll appreciate it.

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Oh my…just look around and you’ll find plenty of them right here on this website. Just as you’ll find plenty of Balkan music recorded by Irish (as in Real Irish, you know?) musicans.


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I can’t agree more with Kenny. Already having Smeceno Horo, who would need any Balkan tune on this site?

Recorded by Irish musicians? So what?

I mean, who would need any *more* Balkan tune? Smeceno Horo is just an exception.

Yeah, that’s the way to go: always stick to the same old stuff…that seems to be THE definition of ‘traditional’ for some people.

Go get a life!

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A ‘kopanitsa’, a particular dance form, the tune for it…

I think that Jeremy, our beloved webmeister, plays the occassional Balkan number…as do other Irish folk. Now if we were to be inundated by the endless fare of tunes there are from those realms, like say a dozen kopanitsas, then I’d be worried… But hey, we all need a good gripe once in awhile and Mario has managed to stir the shight yet again. Maybe it’s like slurry, it gets spread about and over time, as it sinks into the greater environment of melody, it enriches rather than spoils. Maybe, but I’ve also seen rivers of floating fish caused by the slurry cowboys around here on this island variously called Britain… So, will we see reels and jigs go belly up, and hornpipes, because of a toxic introduction of a kopanitsa or two, or three? 😎

Hey, I think I’ve one of these in 21/16… 😉

In seriousness, 😛, complaint can be healthy and keep us from buying too much feta, and help to maintain some balance so that lamb will still feature more in the diet of the Irish than goat…

Plenty ?

Name them. And I do not need any advice about my life from you, Mario. Do you know any Irish music ?

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I’ve been living in Wales for a year now and I’ve thus far held off from buying feta from my local organic shop, choosing instead from the (limited) range of Welsh cheeses on offer. Although, today, I gave in to some of the Italian-sounding Grinzola, which is made in Denmark, with its label printed in German. Now that I’ve started beginners’ Welsh lessons, perhaps I can be forgiven that transgression.

But if I were serious about Italian cheeses, I’d go to Italy.

"Say CHEESE!" ~

Be careful about those Welsh cheeses. There are some really nice small produces, one dutch couple we used to buy from regularly, wheels of the stuff, and then there’s the big one between Aberaeron and Tregaron who make cheeses for the big boys ~ and they are awful… But they have the name ~ "Welsh"… Oh yeah, I think they also have the U.K. monopoly on making an American cheese that’s really good for melting ~ Monterey Jack…

Somebody has to try to keep ol’ Mario in check. We could end up being swamped by all those stinky German cheeses ~ YEW!

On feta, one of the best I’ve ever had is produced locally, Yorkshire… And I’ve had it in Greece, the former Yugoslavia, Macedonia ~ and beyond…

But mostly we buy cheddars… 🙂

& Parmeggiano Reggiano…

Shwt wyt ti ‘Confused’?

5-to-1? ~ Horses for Courses, or Cheeses in this case?

Mario’s last five contribtions, the most recent first ~
The minus preceeding, if needed, means it isn’t ‘Irish’ or any variation of ‘Celtic’ ~

- Kopanitsa
- Enkronaspolskan
- Doneless
- Majofis
- La Boite A Frisson

Maybe, just maybe we should have at least a similar rule to the self-composed, for every non-Irish (or at the least non-Celtic) tune contributed there should be at least 5 Irish tunes contributed. ~ or something like that? 😏


Maybe as a courtesy and consideration for the basic humour of this site it might be a good idea to at least start following a rule like this. I do know that a few folk who were so self obsessed with getting their genius on site here, after about the 6th self-composed tune, had a whack of them go "POOF!" Patience is not unlimited, not even amongst the saintly…

Most of my contributions are withing the nature of this site, but I have had a number of tunes relegated to limbo, slipping off into the void at some point. Jeremy doesn’t feel he needs to warn you ahead of time either. But hey, it is his site. We’re all guests, but some of us forget that, and some of us neglect our host and his intentions and interests. Such neglect and ignorance is not without its risks, Jeremy does, after all, have the buttons and the plug and the right to exercise his omniscient might…

I’ve heard many people say this about discussions here on this site:
"If you don’t like what it’s saying, move on to something else, don’t read it."
The same could be said for the tunes. Does it hurt when someone posts a non-Irish tune here? Let Jeremy decide. We have the rules, and it’s up to the members to follow them but it’s far too late to start saying "Irish tunes only here".

We have thousands of Irish tunes already here, with many more on the way. The "others" are by far the minority. So if you don’t like the tune, don’t play it/look at it, move on.

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Balkan mixed meter ~ maybe 1%? 😏

Oops! ~ I forgot the decimal ~ .1%, if that…

Right-o, C!
And Mario, I for one really appreciate your contributions. I know that this is an Irish tunes site, but unless Jeremy stops you, keep these little gems coming.

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I thought Mario had already got two yellow cards. I don’t understand why he has come back to get another.

Ydw. Conffiwsd iawn, diolch. Ond mae’n dda’n bod ‘conffiwsd’ weithiau. Esgusodwch fi i’r gramadeg.

Kenny: beg yer pardon - my little advice wasn’t directed at you. It was aimed at Slainte. I can’t stand his way of generalizing things. And yes, I do in fact know some Irish music. Quite a lot, to be honest. I’ve been playing that stuff for…er…what? 13 years?

Well, Slainte - I just happen to absolutely LOVE yelllow! 😎

And about further submissions: at least I promise that I’ll go and balance the Irish/Non-Irish ratio so that’s it’s more in tune (heh!) with the basic idea of this site. That’s also what Jeremy agreed upon.

Now let there be peace in the valley! 😉

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It’s almost red. I don’t need any advice from you, Mario.

Fair enough, Mario. I have no objection to people posting the odd "non-Irish" tune here, but the ratio recently has been tilted far too much away from the original intentions of this website. Yesterday out of the last 10 tunes posted, only 3 could even remotely be said to be connected to the Irish tradition. I look forward to your next tune submissions. Good luck - [ and may they not be duplications 🙂 ].

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Slainte: I didn’t know it’ was you who’s handing out the reds and yellows.

Kenny: Oh yeah, I’ll try my very best to dodge the dreaded ‘Duplicated!’ message.

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Caws yn ein oergell! / Cheese in our fridge! 😎

1 x cheddar, Irish ~ mild and creamy
1 x cheddar, Scottish ~ excessively mature
1 x cheddar, Manx ~ w/pepper, a favourite of my wife’s
1 x cheddar, English ~ chalky and extra mature
1 x Parmigiano Reggiano, Italian
1 x feta, Greek
& various species of cream or soft cheese…

Damn, no wonder I’m having trouble losing weight… 😉

Note: absolutely no Welsh cheddar, no way, but if we could get some of that lovely Welsh gouda we would. Next time we’re down we’ll chase up a wheel’s worth, aged and with caraway seeds…

Hey slainte, what kind of cheese do they produce on your island?

Can one really play Irish music without a trusted source for and regular intake of Irish cheeses? 😏

I like it. It’s amusing to try to play it with Irish ornamentation. And the second-to-last strain has real drive, in any language. Thanks.

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"c," we do have a variety of cheeses, but the most common one here is processed cheese, which doesn’t have rich flavours. I miss Switzerland.

Hey slainte, I bet you didn’t know I could yodel? 😎

I come from a long line of Wicklow Hill Yodelers, one of Ireland’s hidden musical cults…

The biggest place for Irish yodelling though is the Monaghan / Armagh area…

I just updated the ABC to a more elaborate version of the tune and also fixed a few errors which slipped me on the first pass.

So things are getting cheesy around here? Well, I guess that was to be expected… 😉

Me, I’d love to go with a real mature Gouda - with that crispy, almost crsytaline texture and a rich, saturated golden colour…yum! 🙂

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Ceolachan - I have been told that, before the advent of telecommunications, the people here in Berlin would stand on their respective rooftops and yoddel the day’s news to each other…! 😎

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Damn…it was meant to read ‘yodelling’, of course… 😏

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*yodel*…Oh boy, gotta go to sleep…

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Now we have the cheese, extra mature gouda, we need to decide on the bread, I’ll bake it or we can buy in, and what sort of brew to go along with it, maybe Belgian beer? Music, no problem. The company will be good and the craic will be mighty ~ food, music, discussions, arguments, fights and dancing? 😎

When the sun comes up the next day we’ll all be seeing yellow…

Well..I could bring in some reall good beer from the Allgäu, deep down in the south of Germany, where I lived for a coule of years. It’s special, and it’s really good, so… 🙂

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Sounds good, I’m very fond of Germanic brews, and especially the Bocks…

Meh…. the porter out from bend is wicked. ;)


I’ve been hearing and learning Irish music for 30 years. At the same time I have always been inspired by balkan music of all sorts, especially when I heard Planxty do it in the 70’s. Now, I come to this website not only to hear new Irish tunes, and English, and Swedish, and French ones, or wherever else has a vibrant tradition, but also to listen to, collect, and then learn, something new to refresh my aural palette and to broaden my own repertoire. So. come on, take your ear defenders off and listen again. I will be makeing a special effort to add Kopanitsa to my busking repertoire.


"Pinnacle Porter"? ~ or maybe "Gonzo Imperial Porter"? ~ as well ~ or ~ 😎

Howdy woodsmith, you comin’ to the party then?

Good addition Pádraig, I’m fond of porter, is this "Pinnacle Porter" from the "Bend Brewing Company"? I’ve not had the pleasure yet but am always up for trying a new brew… I’d also like to try "Gonzo Imperial Porter" from the "Flying Dog Brewery" folks… And, they also make a Doppelbock!!! One of my favourite German brews I can only remember by the spades on the label, the more the merrier… 😉

Gemtrimmer: hi, glad you like it - I’m all with you!

Yeah, Doppelbock…strong, tasty - and extremely nutritious as well. No need to spend your money on snacks, just order another Doppelbock and you’re all set….hmmm…Andechser Doppelbock (dark!)…yum!

Have a drink: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bock
In German: http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bockbier

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Illegal alien music?

Wow. Thanks for the amazing tune!

The sound clip was kind of slow and boring - in fact, don’t even listen to it if you don’t have to. It will only fool you into not recognizing the innate power of this tune.

I started playing it way faster with some moving chords and harmony notes under the melody and it just came alive.

As for disallowing "non-Irish" tunes (as in, “Non-Irish need not apply” or “No ‘checks’ allowed”), I’m not convinced that would be a smart move.

First we’d have to remove all those Scottish and Scots-influenced tunes….and all those tunes from Chicago and Philadelphia and New York and Quebec…and we’d have to can all the tunes written by the Irish in Ireland that don’t fit the officially prescribed mold of old-fashioned "traditional" tune structure.

We’d also have to ban all those instruments that were not used in the old old days of trad music like bouzoukis, guitars, various accordions, foreign-made whistles, and that African-American instrument known as the Irish banjo.

If we look back far enough, we might even have to ban fiddles since they were imported too…and modern “Irish” pipes have evolved too far to be included as well.

Because the overwhelming majority of traditional Irish musicians have been horribly corrupted by such alien influences, we’d have to give them the boot too. How dare they use more than three chords, or for that matter, any chords at all with our beloved traditional music!

In fact, those great master fiddlers on pipers of the early 20th century would have to go too for the sins they committed in their inventive tunes and settings.

That would leave only a tiny handful of holy ancient musicians to play the tunes that have been sanctioned as 100% pure and spotless “Irish” tunes…and THAT would put an end to the Irish tradition of the evolution of traditional music that created those interestingly unique styles throughout the different counties.

Who’s to say what Irish music is - music made by Irish people, perhaps? Hmmm.

I for one am not ready to resign myself to living in a vacuum with only a museum jukebox of the 1,753 officially sanctioned top Irish hits to be played over and over and over again.

I still enjoy the actual traditions of traditional music too much for that. I don’t want to be like the “boy in the bubble” (hmmm, that might be a good name for a tune full old worn-out musical clichés).

Well that’s what I think, anyway.

PS – Just because a tune is posted, you don’t have to play it. Just push your little finger down on that mouse and another tune will appear…like magic!


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Who started all this mess?

Rubbish? Which part?

(I’m going to assume that it was not my statement that I like the tune that inspired the response. Let me know if I’m mistaken about that.)

Hopefully, it was obvious that the ‘nothing-non-Irish-allowed’ train of thought taken to its logical extreme was simply a humorous way of drawing attention to the complexities of trying to stop “traditional” Irish music from evolving or being influenced by anything from outside of Ireland.

Most of the best-known traditional Irish musicians over the decades have long been influenced by the alien music of places like Scotland, Eastern Europe, the US, etc. They’ve also written or interpreted many tunes such that they might not have been considered traditional in 1807 and use numerous instruments that were not part of traditional Irish music in the early 20th century.

Andy Irvine, Donal Lunny, Dervish, Liz Carroll, Tommy Peoples, Lunasa, Solas, and far too many more to mention are still Irish musicians to me even though they all regularly expand the structure of traditional tunes and make use of alien instruments (like banjos, guitars, mandolins/bouzoukis, basses, etc.) that have recently become an acceptable part of the Irish music landscape.

I’m here primarily for the so-called “Irish” tunes but if I see something else I like…well then I’m doubly blessed.

PS - If one really wishes not to see something “non-Irish” for God’s sake never ever ever click on a tune with a name like…”Kopanitsa”! LOL