Kevin Keegan’s Waltz
This tune is occasionally played at the Wednesday evening session at the Irish-American Heritage Center in Chicago. This transcription is by Gus Friedlander. Gus has a session on Tuesday evenings at the Celtic Knot in Evanston, IL.
Is this the same Kevin Keegan who manages Newcastle United? Or is that too much of a coincidence….
Assuming that question’s not a "wind-up"…
There is a Joe Scurfiled tune, Balls to Hall, relating ti Newcastle United, so a Kevin Keegan’s waltz is quite possible in the nothr east…..
I’ve not come across this one before but I’d put money on it being a Chris Ormston tune, He’s a great Northumbrian piper who writes wonderful tunes. He is also a keen follower of the local football team - Newcastle daft as they say in Geordie land.
A profile of the Kevin Keegan in question can be found here: http://sf.ccewest.org/misc/cooley-keegan_story.html There are 2 CDs of him, one was released informally and decried as a bootleg as the issuers didn’t contact Kevin’s family for the go-ahead; an official CD was then put together by Joe Burke and Charlie Lennon. This 2nd issue has a track of KK playing the waltz. It was also recorded by Joe and Joanie Madden on their Galway Afternoon record. Most of these recordings have Kevin playing in a session, he was a bit tape recorder they say.
Kevin played another waltz in E minor that followed naturally into the Orphan jig; it sounds a bit like Her Mantle So Green. Keegan and Cooley can be heard playing these tunes together on tape 5 at joecooleytapes.org
Kevin Keegan’s Waltz
"he was a bit tape recorder <shy> they say," is what I meant to write above - or that he didn’t like being a soloist, anyway, according to what I’ve heard. Great box player at any rate. Shame they didn’t drag him into a studio. The "Off to California" compilation LP of Irish musicians in San Francisco in the late 70s mentions that Kevin was absent on the recording as he was in Ireland at the moment but would cut a record upon his return; but his very untimely death prevented that from happening.
X:2 is my attempt to capture what he played. Not sure if those triplets on F are that or FGF or something else - they’re triplets of some ilk anyway. The florid 5 note runs and repeated Gs at the end/beginning of parts took me a while to suss out, still figuring out this notation stuff, so get his record and check my work. But in general I think I’ve captured his playing a bit better with this. Probably there are better ways of notating some of these devices in waltzes, maybe books will be of help to me here, as this tune has a bit of the old Romantic Viennese 3/4 quality to it - and check out his playing of the Cuckoo Waltz on that CD too, that’s an old number from the Guido Deiro etc school of accordion playing. Box players in the 60s seemed to have one or two of those handy for the sake of a nice party piece, records I’ve come across from Finbarr Dwyer and Seamus Shannon had some real ornate waltzes on them, as a break from all that reeling and jigging.
The third setting that I have added is the tune setting off the Kilfenora Ceili Band album (Chapter 8) where they called it Timmy Connors’. Its quite different but clearly still the same tune.
Flatwater Fran and Kevin Keegan’s Waltz
Kilfenora in rehearsal.