Flood on the Holm

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FLOOD ON THE HOLM. AKA - "Flood on the Home (The)." Irish, Scottish; Reel. D Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). The piece consists of assembled portions of three reels by the Scots fiddler/composer J. Scott Skinner, called "Birlin Reels (The)", recorded in 1910 in London with pianist Ethel Stuart. It was one of a series of Skinner recordings from that session heard by a young Donegal fiddler John Doherty (1900-1980), and added to his own repertory [1]. Doherty researcher Conor Caldwell (2013) believes that Doherty learned the tunes from a borrowed record player while on the road, and miss-remembered the parts, leading to different versions from his own playing. The third strain of Doherty's tune is the first strain of "Auld Wheel", which is a traditional tune and not a Skinner original, although Skinner recorded it twice in medleys, in 1905 and 1910 (as one of his "Birlin Reels). The other two Skinner tunes used in Doherty's assemblage are "Spinning Wheel (The)" and "Bride's Reel (1) (The)." In Doherty's 1978 Gael-Linn recording Caldwell finds the 'C' part to be yet another Skinner tune, "MacKenzie Fraser"; it is quite different, he observes, that the version recorded by Altan, having much more melodic material from "Spinning Wheel (The)" than other recorded versions.

Source for notated version:

Printed sources:

Recorded sources: Gael-Linn Records, John Doherty - "Taisce - The Celebrated Recordings" (1978). Virgin 7234 8 44559 2 7, Altan - "Runaway Sunday" (1997).

See also listing at:
See a standard notation transcription and analysis of John Doherty's entire version, by Conor Caldwell, in his PhD. thesis "‘Did you hear about the poor old travelling fiddler?’ - The Life and Music of John Doherty", 2013, pp. 334-336. [1]




Back to Flood on the Holm[edit]

  1. Thomas Caldwell, "Did you hear about the poor old travelling fiddler?’ - The Life and Music of John Doherty", Doctoral Thesis, 2013, pp. 90-91.