Annotation:Farther and Deeper

Find traditional instrumental music

Back to Farther and Deeper

FARTHER AND DEEPER. AKA and see "Further in the Deeper (The)," "Merry Black Lad (The)." Irish, Jig (6/8 time). Ireland, County Donegal. A Dorian. Standard tuning (fiddle). AABB. Caoimhin Mac Aoidh (1994) retells the John Doherty tale of a Donegal piper who responded to a challenge to explore a cave outside Glenties which had never been fully explored, and from which men who sought to plumb its depths never returned. The piper decided to take along his pipes and dog, and the next morning, with the townspeople gathered outside the cave mouth, he entered playing his pipes all the while with his dog at his side. The townspeople kept vigil for a time, then appointed a guard to wait should the piper emerge. They heard his pipes skirling for three days, growing more and more faint until they could be heard no more, and, although they kept watch for several weeks, no sign was ever seen or heard again of the piper. The dog, however, emerged some weeks later from another cave, without its skin (this aspect is quite specific in the motif, according to Mac Aoidh). The tune the piper played was well-remembered by the townsfolk, who called it "Farther and Deeper" in memory of the event. A similar story is attached to the march "Piper in the Cave (The)."

Despite the appeal of the local story, the tune is Scottish in origin and is a version of the pipe jig "An Gille dubh sùgach" "Merry Black Lad (The)," published by Glasgow piper, pipe teacher and pipe-maker William Gunn in his Caledonian Repository of Music Adapted for the Bagpipes (1848).

Source for notated version:

Printed sources:

Recorded sources: CCF 31, John Doherty - "The Floating Bow."

See also listing at:
Alan Ng's [1]

Back to Farther and Deeper