Plane of the Plank
A composition of Billy McComiskey, found on Alan Kelly’s CD ‘Mosaic’ .
Loads of triplets can be put into this hornpipe.
The Plane Of The Plank, X:2
The first version above has an interesting cadence in the first bar of the second part (the c# suggesting moving into the key of A major, then back into G major for the rest of the tune. I haven’t yet heard any one playing it that way. I offer here a transcription from the playing of Christine Dowling as taught to her whistle class in Belfast, and it is similar to the version played by Brian Hughes on his CD "Beat of the Breath". Can any one confirm which is the original as composed by Billy McComiskey or was it actually Liz Caroll who wrote this?
The Plane Of The Plank, X:3
As near as I can get it, give or take a few ornaments, this is way the composer, Liz Carroll, plays it with Billy McComiskey on the Trian album. Lovely tune. I like it because of its great range, and no 8 bar segment is exactly the same. It is also relatively easy to play on the BC button box 🙂
Plane of the Plank X2 - Correction
Need to correct my earlier comment. My X2 transcription is based on the playing of whistler Brian Hughes on his CD "The Beat of the Breath" (though without some of his variations) and not on Christine Dowling’s playing although I see that she also recorded this tune in 1989 with fiddler husband Martin and Bob Newton, playing as Boxty (https://www.irishtune.info/tune/1141/)
I am sure now that the X3 version is how the tune was originally intended by Liz Carroll. It is interesting how tunes can get changed in transmission and makes one wonder how some of the older tunes that we love so well might have been played long ago. The "Tunes of the Munster Pipers" books based on the Rev. Goodman manuscripts, and brought to life by pipe Mick O’Brien, display some old, barely unrecognisable settings, of tunes we still play today. My final thought on this hornpipe: why "Plane OF the Plank" rather than "Plane ON the Plank", like using a plane ON a piece of wood to smooth it?