Father John Angus Rankin’s march

By Jerry Holland

Also known as Fr. John Angus Rankin’s.

There are 3 recordings of this tune.

Father John Angus Rankin’s has been added to 2 tune sets.

Father John Angus Rankin's has been added to 40 tunebooks.

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Three settings

X: 1
T: Father John Angus Rankin's
R: march
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Amaj
|:AB|c2 e2 e2 d<e|f2 e2 e2 A>B|c2 e2 ecAB|c2 B2 B2 A<B|
c2 e2 e2 de|f2 e2 e2 Ac|defd ecd<B|c2 A2 A2:|
|:f<g|a2 e2 fedc|f2 e2 e2 f<g|a2 e2 fedc|
[1 c2 B2 B2 f<g|a2 e2 fedc|f2 e2 e2 Ac|defd ecd<B|c2 A2 A2:|
[2 c2 B2 B2 AB|c<Acd e2 ce|fdfg a3 e|defd ecd<B|c2 A2 A2||
X: 2
T: Father John Angus Rankin's
R: march
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Amaj
|:A/B/|ce ed/<e/|fe eA/>B/|ce e/c/A/B/|cB BA/<B/|
ce ed/e/|fe eA/c/|d/e/f/d/ e/c/d/<B/|cA A:|
|:f/<g/|ae f/e/d/c/|fe ef/<g/|ae f/e/d/c/|
[1 cB Bf/<g/|ae f/e/d/c/|fe eA/c/|d/e/f/d/ e/c/d/<B/|cA A:|
[2 cB BA/B/|c/<A/c/d/ ec/e/|f/d/f/g/ a>e|d/e/f/d/ e/c/d/<B/|cA A||
X: 3
T: Father John Angus Rankin's
R: march
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
|:G>A|B2 d2 d2 ^c<d|e2 d2 d2 G>A|B2 d2 dBG>A|B2 A2 A2 G<A|
B2 d2 d2 ^c<d|e2 d2 d2 GB|c<de>c dBc<A|B2 G2 G2:|
|:e<f|g2 d2 edc<B|e2 d2 d2 e<f|g2 d2 edc<B|
[1 B2 A2 A2 e<f|g2 d2 edc<B|e2 d2 d2 GB|c<de>c dBc<A|B2 G2 G2:|
[2 B2 A2 A2 (3FGA|B<GBc d2 Bd|e>ce<f g3 d|c<de>c dBc<A|B2 G2 G2||

Nine comments

“Father John Angus Rankin’s March” ~ C: Jerry Holland

I think, and hope, that Jerry Holland is coming out with a new recording soon, fingers crossed… As usual, Paul Cranford will know for sure…

Father John Angus Rankin ~

Father John Angus Rankin Cultural Centre

Glendale, Inverness County, Cape Breton

Central to the story of Glendale is the figure of Father John Angus Rankin, a priest with a love of Scottish music who served the community for thirty-five years. While in Glendale he organized step dance and square dance classes for children, taught Gaelic classes, and annually said mass in Gaelic at St. Margaret’s Church atop the mountain at River Denys.

In 1972, Ron MacInnis of the CBC produced a movie called “The Vanishing Cape Breton Fiddle”, conveying the message that this art was in a state of decline and could die out. Reaction was swift, and Cape Bretoners were shaken out of their complacency. As a staunch supporter of traditional fiddling, Father Rankin organized and directed a three day Fiddle Festival in 1973 that featured over one hundred and twenty Cape Breton fiddlers.

Many people say that he was the driving force behind the resurgence of traditional Scottish music in Cape Breton.

The Father John Angus Rankin Cultural Centre opened its doors in 1999. The Glendale and Area Gaelic and Historical Society is in charge of the Taigh - Tasgaidh Braigh’ na h - Aibhneadh, (Glendale and Area Archives), which is housed in the Centre. Their goal is to collect, preserve, and catalogue local documents, audiotapes, maps, photographs, and videos of cultural significance to Glendale. ~


A transcription and recording of this tune is also to be found in this excellent collection, which includes suggested chords:

“Jerry Holland’s Collection of Fiddle Tunes: A Compilation of Traditional and Original Melodies”
86 pages, 282 tunes
Cranford Publications

“A healthy balance of Irish and Scottish traditional standards and contemporary Cape Breton compositions. Many of the tunes have been recorded on Jerry’s CDs.”

Page 8: “Father John Angus Rankin’s March”

I wish I had my copy on hand to check my transcription against. This transcription was made from a recording I have of Jerry playing it…

2/4 ~ 4/4

Some would choose to notate this in 2/4 but, as I’ve said in the past, I personally feel 4/4 gives the notation room to breath, is less dense inkwise, and I think generally, if not always, does better justice to the form, and specifically this particular melody.

M: 2/4
L: 1/8
R: march
K: Amaj
|: A/B/ |\
ce ed/e/ | fe eA/B/ | ce e/c/A/B/ | cB BA/B/ |
ce ed/e/ | fe eA/c/ | d/e/f/d/ e/c/d/<B/ | cA A :| ~

“Father John Angus Rankin’s March” ~ in G Major

X: 2
T: Father John Angus Rankin’s March
C: Jerry Holland
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
R: barndance
K: Gmaj
|: G>A |\
B2 d2 d2 ^c<d | e2 d2 d2 G>A | B2 d2 dBG>A | B2 A2 A2 G<A |
B2 d2 d2 ^c<d | e2 d2 d2 GB | c<de>c dBc<A | B2 G2 G2 :|
|: e<f |\
g2 d2 edc<B | e2 d2 d2 e<f | g2 d2 edc<B |
[1 B2 A2 A2 e<f | g2 d2 edc<B | e2 d2 d2 GB | c<de>c dBc<A | B2 G2 G2 :|
[2 B2 A2 A2 (3FGA | B<GBc d2 Bd | e>ce<f g3 d | c<de>c dBc<A | B2 G2 G2 |]

Different tune

This one’s billed as track 12, tune 2 on Jerry Holland’s album, Master Cape Breton Fiddler, but it’s not. Here’s the tune on that recording:

T:Fr. John Angus Rankin
S:Jerry Holland
C|B,2BA BdcB|cAeA cAAC|B,2BA BdcB|Afec dBBC|\
B,2BA BdcB|cAeA cAAc|fedc dcBA|FDEC DB,B,||g|\
f2df afdf|cAeA cAAg|f2df afdf|cAec dBBg|\
f2df afdB|(3AAA cA eAce|fedc dcBA|FDEC DB,B,|]

There’s also “Fr./Father John Angus Rankin’s strathspey”, one of Donald Angus Beaton’s compositions.

Correction: “Jerry Holland’s (1st) Collection of Fiddle Tunes”

Jurgen’s transcription is for the reel, which is on page 38 of this collection

“Father John Angus Rankin’s March” is not in the edition I have, not on page 8, not on page 38…

~ further clarification ~ “Father John Angus Rankin’s March” ~ C: Jerry Holland

“Jerry Holland’s Collection of Fiddle Tunes”
Tunes from the repertoire of Jerry Holland, edited by Paul Cranford, Cranford Publications - 1988 (1st edition)

Not in the first edition, but it is on page 8 of the newer edition:
“Father John Angus Rankin’s March” ~ a march by Jerry Holland

Cranford Publications

It seems I’ve given away my copy of the ‘newer’ edition and only have the older one, which does not have the march in it… 🙁