The Mug Of Brown Ale jig

Also known as The Basket Of Shamrocks, The Cavan Lassies No.2, Clare, Clare’s, The Clare, Delaney’s Drummers, Ginger’s Favourite, The Mug Of Ale, Paddy In London, Winter Apples.

There are 54 recordings of a tune by this name.

A tune by this name has been recorded together with The Connaughtman’s Rambles (lots of times), The Butcher’s Fancy (a few times), Old Joe’s (a few times), Drover Lads (a few times) and The Eavesdropper (a few times).

The Mug Of Brown Ale has been added to 24 tune sets.

The Mug Of Brown Ale has been added to 588 tunebooks.

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Seven settings

X: 1
T: The Mug Of Brown Ale
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Ador
g/2f/2|:eAA fAA|~g3 age|dBG GAG|~B3 Bcd|
eAA fAA|~g3 age|dBd gdB|ABA ABd:|
efg ~a3|aba age|dBd ~g3|gba ged|
efg ~g3|aba age|dBd gdB|ABA ABd|
efg ~a3|aba age|dBd ~g3|gba ged|
efg a2b|^c'ac' age|dBd gdB|ABA A2||
X: 2
T: The Mug Of Brown Ale
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Ador
EAA ABd| edB ccA| BGG DGG| BdB BAG| EAA ABd| edB efg| edc BcD| eAA A
X: 3
T: The Mug Of Brown Ale
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Ador
eAA fAA|~g3 age|dBA GFG|BAB dBd
eAA fAA|gfg age|dBd gdB|1BAG Agf:|2BAG A2d||
efg ~a3|aba age|dBd g2f|gag ged|
efg aba|aba age|dBd gdB|1BAG A2d:|2BAG Agf||
X: 4
T: The Mug Of Brown Ale
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Ador
f|eAA fAA|~g3 age|dBA ~G3|BAG Bcd|
eAA fAA|~g3 age|def gdB|cAA A2:|
z|efg ~a3|aba age|def ~g3|gba ged|
efg ~a3|aba age|def gdB|cAA A2:|
X: 5
T: The Mug Of Brown Ale
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Ador
|:eAA fAA|g3 age|dBA G3|BAB dB/c/d|
eAA fAA|g3 age|dB/c/d gdB|BAG A2g:||
|:efg a3|aba age|dB/c/d g3|gba ged|
efg a3|aba age|dB/c/d gdB|BAG A2g:||
# Added by JACKB .
X: 6
T: The Mug Of Brown Ale
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Ador
|: eAA fAA | gfg age | dBA G2 A | BAB dBd |
eAA fAA | gfg age | dBd gdB | BAG A3 :|
|: efg a3 | aba age | dBd gfg | gag ged |
efg a3 | aba age | dBd gdB | BAG A3 :|
X: 7
T: The Mug Of Brown Ale
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Ador
gf |: eAA fAA | egg age | dBA G2A | BAB dBd |
e2A f2A | egg age | dBB gBB | BAG A3 :|
efg aba | aba age | ded ~g3 | gaf ged |
efg a2a | aba age | dBB gBB | BAG A3 :|

Twenty-eight comments

The Mug of Brown ale

Sorece: Michael J. Cashin, Chiago, 13 July 1928 (recorded as "Ginger’s Favourite")
Transcription: Gian Marco Pietrasanta (craniota on "thesession.org")

Mug of Brown Ale

This is VERY similar to Delaney’s Drummers in O’Neill (305) and at the session I used to play in in Reading (UK) Frank the banjo player called it Paddy in London. Whatever! It’s a good tune and we used to put it with The Top of the Cork Road I think…it’s along time ago now and my brain is full.

Paddy in London

I also know this by Paddy in London. Mug of Brown Ale is often attached to this one:

EAA ABd| edB ccA| BGG DGG| BdB BAG| EAA ABd| edB efg| edc BcD| eAA A

I’ve also heard this real with a high C at the end, rather than a C#. I like the slide into the high C better, personally.

Movie trivia

Did I really spot this tune in The Commitments, played by a fiddler who turns up at Jimmy Rabbitte’s audition, or have I mistaken it? (And while we’re at it, there’s also a piper, what does he play?)

Another variation

This is a different variation I know, heard it on the Planxty 2004
Live DVD.

eAA fAA|~g3 age|dBA GFG|BAB dBd
eAA fAA|gfg age|dBd gdB|1BAG Agf:|2BAG A2d||
efg ~a3|aba age|dBd g2f|gag ged|
efg aba|aba age|dBd gdB|1BAG A2d:|2BAG Agf||

Old man dillon

It also sounds a bit like Old Man Dillon, the first tune on Terry Bingham’s…

I don’t think so. You probably confused two different tunes with similar titles.

A personal connection

I am especially fond of this tune. The renowned luthier and multi-instrumentalist, Grit Laskin, lived for a time in my parents’ house, and he wrote lyrics to this tune called The Life Of A New Mother when I was a baby. It is recorded on his first album, Unmasked. He called the tradtional melody Paddy in London, but it is also known as The Clare Jig. I also listened to this many times on La Ronde des voyageurs, by Éritage, which is one of my favourite records of all time. Interestingly, both of these records were originally released under Fogerty’s Cove Music, which was singer Stan Rogers’ independant record label.

East Galway Version

Here’s a version from the fiddle playing of Mairin Fahy, a niece of Aggie Whyte from Ballinakill, East Galway. It has a nice ending.

K: Ador
f|eAA fAA|~g3 age|dBA ~G3|BAG Bcd|
eAA fAA|~g3 age|def gdB|cAA A2:|
z|efg ~a3|aba age|def ~g3|gba ged|
efg ~a3|aba age|def gdB|cAA A2:|

Because of the similar endings, I like it followed by The Humours of Ballingarry: https://thesession.org/tunes/4191

Ever since I learned this tune I couldn’t stand the fact that its most common name around here is "The mug of brown ale." Such a bland name for such a great tune. I think I’ll call it the Clare jig from now on.

A Mug of Brown Ale ~ to conclude, include and begin

And what’s wrong with a good mug of brown ale? If you’d been working your ass off ploughing fields all day since before sunrise, or cutting turf, or fishing, or delvering mail, or milking cows ~ or any of the other hard labour not uncommon in old Eire, well, sitting down at the end of the day to a mug of brown ale, the usual, from light brown to black-brown porter/stout ~ that is as near to heaven as you might imagine for that small moment of relief of thirst and the settling affect on worries and the loosening of the tools of chat that a little thirst quenching and alcohol can bring ~ and the perfect complement and lubricaation for music and maybe a little dancing…

Don’t devalue what you obviously don’t understand… ;-)

Haphazardly renaming tunes because you don’t like the name of a thing, proof you also lack an understanding of the roots to it all ~ well, that’s also missing the point to this thing we’re wrapped up in, and, really, a kind of disrespect. We’d be in hell if every tune was named after the county of its origin… How many "Clare Jigs" would we be wading through? Isn’t "Gan Ainm" enough mystery for you? It’s not like common sense will help here, so you go ahead and rename everything you dislike the accepted or more common names for. Most of us have a name or more for that sort of thing, and none that I can think of are complementary… :-/

“A / The Clare Jig”

~ but realizing that sometimes alternates for ‘gan ainm’ and a failing memory come in handy… However, there are more interesting alternatives titles for this lovely little number… like the lovely lilt and promise of a "Mug of Brown Ale"…. :-)

"Also known as Apples In Winter"

- what? Isn’t that a completely different tune?

Mug of Brown Ale, simple setting without ornamentation

This seems to be the way it is played at my local session. Similar to version 3 above, but a bit more straightforward.

T: The Mug Of Brown Ale
S: Ballydehob Session
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Ador
eAA fAA|gfg age|dBA G2 A|BAB dBd|
eAA fAA|gfg age|dBd gdB|BAG A3:||
efg a3|aba age|dBd gfg|gag ged|
efg a3|aba age|dBd gdB|BAG A3:||

Longford recordings of this tune

This tune was recorded by two Longford musicians in the 1920s. The accordionist Frank Quinn (1893-1964) of Greagh, Drumlish, Co. Longford recorded it in December, 1922 entitled "The Basket of Shamrocks" while Packie Dolan (1904-1932) a fiddle player from beside Frank Quinn in Ballinamuck, Co. Longford recorded it in May 1928 as the second tune in a set entitled "The Cavan Lassies".

X:6 “The Mug Of Brown Ale”

N: # Posted by Tash Ó Treasaigh ~ April 21st, 2014

Mug of Brown Ale in sets

I love this tune - it’s easy, lends itself to lots of simple variations and other tunes to play to and from, and sounds great on everyone’s instrument. At a house session over the weekend I suggested Indian Point and then looked at an open fat binder of tunes. "Hey, lets do this…."

So Mug of Brown Ale came after, then back to IP - just ‘cause. Sounded great.

So many choices!

Maybe….

" It’s on the Kerry Fiddles CD under that name" - there is always the possibility that the track titles on that particular LP / CD could be wrong. Not at all an uncommon occurrence.

Posted by .

Oh for sure Kenny - I was just illustrating an instance in which this tune *was* listed as Apples in Winter (even though it’s nothing like another tune under that name.)

The Mug Of Brown Ale, X:7

Source: Fintan Vallely
Transcription: gian marco pietrasanta