Ballinasloe Fair (1)

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BALLINASLOE FAIR ("Aonach Bhéal Átha na Sluaighe" or "Aonac Bel-Ata-Na Sluaigead"). AKA and see "Blackpool (The)," "Fair of Ballinasloe (The)," "Leitrim Thrush (1) (The)," "Rita Keane's." Irish, Reel. A Dorian ('A' part) & C Major ('B' part) [O'Neill/Krassen]: A Minor ('A' part) & C Major ('B' part) [Breathnach, Miller & Perron, O'Neill/1850 & 1001]. Standard tuning (fiddle). AB (Breathnach): AAB (Miller & Perron/1977, O'Neill/Krassen): AA'B (O'Neill/1850 & 1001): ABB' (Miller & Perron/2006, Vallely). There is an annual horse fair at Ballinasloe [1], the second largest town in County Galway, in the western part of Ireland. It is one of Europe’s oldest and largest Horse Fairs, dating back to the 18th century, and is held in October. Along with horses, other livestock was traded at the fair.

Old photograph of the Ballinasloe Horse Fair.

Famed County Sligo fiddler Michael Coleman (1891-1945) recorded the tune in 1927 in New York, in a medley as the second tune, following "Lord McDonald (1)." O'Neill also printed a variant as "Leitrim Thrush (The)."

Source for notated version: fiddler Michael Coleman (County Sligo, Ireland/Bronx, New York, USA) [Breathnach, Miller & Perron].

Printed sources: Breathnach (CRÉ III), 1985; No. 89, p. 44. Lyth (Bowing Styles in Irish Fiddle Playing), vol. 1, 1981; 52. Miller & Perron (Irish Traditional Fiddle Music), 1977; vol. 2, No. 48. Miller & Perron (Irish Traditional Fiddle Music), 2nd Edition, 2006; p. 47. O'Neill (Krassen), 1976; p. 111. O'Neill (Music of Ireland: 1850 Melodies), 1903; No. 1285, p. 241. O'Neill (Dance Music of Ireland: 1001 Gems), 1907; No. 550, p. 102. Vallely (Learn to Play the Fiddle with Armagh Pipers Club), 197?; No. 51, p. 44.

Recorded sources: CBS 36401, The Chieftains - "Boil the Breakfast Early." Columbia Legacy CK 48693, "The Best of the Chieftains" (1992). Green Linnet SIF-1110, "My Love is in America: The Boston College Irish Fiddle Festival" (1991). Intrepid Records, Michael Coleman - "The Heyday of Michael Coleman" (1973). Shanachie Records, "The Classic Recordings of Michael Coleman." Tara 3026, Davy Spillane - "Pipedreams." Topic 12TS338, Vincent Griffin - "Traditional Fiddle Music from County Clare" (1977).

See also listing at:
Hear Michael Coleman's 1927 recording at the Internet Archive [2]

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