Bird in the Bush (1) (The)

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X:1 T:Bird in the Bush [1], The M:C L:1/8 K:G |:d2ec dB~B2|cBAB G2 GG|EAAc BG~G2|BGBd ~g2ge| d2ec dB~B2|cBAB G2 GE|DEGA B2eB|dBAc BGG2:| |:(3Bcd ef~g2fb|agef gedc|(3Bcd ef~g2fb|agef g2 ga| bg~g2 agef|~g2ge dBGE|DEGA B2eB|dBAc BGG2:||



BIRD IN THE BUSH [1], THE (An tÉan ar an gCraobh). AKA and see "Bird in the Tree (The)," "Bird on the Tree." Irish, Reel. G Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AB (Mulvihill): AABB (Mallinson, O'Brien, Sullivan, Taylor, Tubridy). "Bird in the Bush" is attributed to Kerrypiper and fiddler Billy Hanafin (1875-?) from Callinafercy [1]. The reel was famously recorded for the Victor label by fiddler Michael Coleman (1891-1945), originally from County Sligo, in New York in March, 1927, issued as "The Bird in the Tree", the second tune in a medley with "Kerryman's Daughter (The)." Galway fiddler Aggie Whyte also called the tune "Bird in the Tree." See the related tune "Two Birds in the Tree, a nomen from peripetetic Sliabh Luachra fiddler Pádraig O'Keeffe for a similar sounding, but different tune.

Additional notes

Sources for notated versions: - Jim Bly (County Roscommon) [Mulvihill]; set dance music recorded live at Na Píobairí Uilleann, mid-1980's [Taylor].

Printed sources : - Lyth (Bowing Styles in Irish Music, vol. 1), 1981; 26. Mallinson (Essential), 1995; No. 74, p. 32. Moylan (Johnny O'Leary of Sliabh Luachra), 1994; 151. Mulvihill (1st Collection), 1986; No. 198, p. 53 (appears as "Bird on the Bush"). O'Brien (Jerry O'Brien's Accordion Instructor), 1949. Sullivan (Session Tunes, vol. 3), n.d.; No. 48, p. 20. Taylor (Music for the Sets: Yellow Book), 1995; p. 22. Tubridy (Irish Traditional Music, Book Two), 1999; p. 23.

Recorded sources: - Cló Iar-Chonnachta, CICD 148, Mick Conneely - "Selkie" (2001). Gael-Linn CEF 057, "Séamus Creagh & Jackie Daly" (1977, played as a hornpipe). Gael-Linn CEF 069, Paddy Glackin - "An Fhidil: Sraith II" (1980).

See also listings at:
Alan Snyder's Cape Breton Fiddle Recording Index [1]
Jane Keefer's Folk Music Index: An Index to Recorded Sources [2]
Alan Ng's Irishtune.info [3]
Hear Aggie Whyte's "Bird in the Tree", recorded by Alan Lomax in Galway City in January, 1951 [4]
Hear Michael Coleman's "Bird in the Tree" on Souncloud [5]
Hear Seamus Creagh and Jackie Daly's version on Soundcloud (played in the key of 'A') [6]



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  1. Paul de Grae, booklet "Tribute to Seamus Creagh on World Fiddle Day, 20 May, 2017, Scartaglin, County Kerry."