Beare Island Reel

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BEARE ISLAND REEL (Ríl Bhéara). AKA - "Bear Island Reel," "Béara Reel," "Bearhaven Lasses." Irish, Reel. E Dorian. Standard tuning (fiddle). Composed by West Cork accordionist Finbarr Dwyer [1] (1946-2014), though it has sometimes been credited to Paddy Fahy (and is sometimes thus called-as all are Fahy compositions-"Paddy Fahy's"). The tune is named for Beara Island, which lies just off the coast of Castletownbere, connected to the mainland by ferry. Dwyer's family comes from the Beare Island area of County Cork. The island itself takes its name from the O'Sullivan-Beara clan, ancient masters of that part of the country until the late 1600's, when they were routed in battle by the English. The mode shifts between dorian and mixolydian, and accompaniment chords can start on an E major.

Source for notated version:

Printed sources: Mulvihill (1st Collection), 1986; No. 184, p. 50 (appears as “Fahy’s Reel”).

Recorded sources: Cló Iar-Chonnachta, CICD 148, Mick Conneely - "Selkie" (2001. Learned from his father). Green Linnet GLCD 1041, Kevin Burke - "Portland" (1982). Shanachie Shan-79017, John & Phil Cunningham - "Against the Storm" (1980).

See also listings at:
Jane Keefer's Folk Music Index: An Index to Recorded Sources [2]
Alan Ng's Irishtune.info [3]




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