Land of Sweet Erin

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LAND OF SWEET ERIN. AKA and see "Bannocks o' Barley Meal (1)," "Barley Meal," "Kenmure's Up and Awa'," "Kenmuir's On and Awa' Willie," "Kinnegad Slashers," "Molly Maloney," "O! An Irishman's Heart," "O! Merry am I," "Old Brags (The)," "Paddy Digging For 'Goold'," "Powers of Whiskey," "Slashers." Irish, Canadian, American; Jig. USA, New England. Canada, Prince Edward Island. D Major (Cole, Perlman): C Major (Linscott). Standard tuning (fiddle). AABB (Cole, Linscott, O'Flannagan): AABBCC (Perlman). A jig with a long tradition in England, Ireland and Scotland under the alternate titles, above. The "Land of Sweet Erin" title for the melody appeared for some time to be unique to the Elias Howe music publishing company publications (Boston, 19th century), such as Ryan's Mammoth Collection (1883), but Susan de Guardiola has found that the music was printed under that title in A Collection of Country Dances and Cotillions arranged for the pianoforte (Boston: G. Graupner, c. 1808-1811). It may be this source from which Howe obtained the jig (he 'borrowed' freely from earlier publications, although he seems to have done some collecting on his own early in his career). Howe prints a country dance called Twin Sisters with "Land of Sweet Erin" in his Musician's Omnibus No. 1 (1862) and gives "Twin Sisters" as an alternate title. The exact same tune appears in the c. 1840 music manuscript of Yorkshire fiddler Lawrence Leadley as "Molly Maloney." Perlman (1996) believes the third part (printed in his collection), collected in Prince Edward Island, may be a recent addition. It is interesting that the P.E.I. title appears to be from the Cole's publication, rather from the island's Scottish tradition.

Source for notated version: Kenny Chaisson (b. c. 1947, Bear River, North-East Kings County, Prince Edward Island; now resident of Rollo Bay) [Perlman].

Printed sources: Cole (1000 Fiddle Tunes), 1940; p. 63. Howe (Musician's Omnibus No. 1), 1862; p. 44. Linscott (Folk Songs of Old New England), 1936; p. 106. O'Flannagan (The Hibernia Collection), 1860; p. 15. Perlman (The Fiddle Music of Prince Edward Island), 1996; p. 135. Ryan's Mammoth Collection, 1883; p. 93.

Recorded sources: Edison 4199 (Cylander), Joseph Samuels, 1921.

See also listing at:
Hear Joseph Samuel's 1921 recording at the Internet Archive [1]




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