Humors of Bandon

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X:1 T:Humours of Bandon, The M:6/8 L:1/8 R:Set Dance Q:"Presto" B:The Dublin Magazine (March, 1843, No. 13) Z:AK/Fiddler's Companion K:D A,|A,DD {E}DCD|{EF}GED CDE|FDD {E}DCD|{EF}G2E cBc| A2B G2A|{EF}GED CDE|FDE CA,C|D3 !fermata!D2|| A|Add {e}dcd|{ef}ged cde|fdd {e}dcd|{ef}g2e c'bc'| a2b g2a|{ef}ged cde|fde cAc|d3 !fermata!d2|| A|Add {e}dcd|{ef}e2d c2e|{de}d2c B2d|{cd}c2B G2B| {AB}A2G F2A|{GA}G2F E2G|{FG}F2E DEF|ECE !fermata!A,2|| B,/C/|A,DD {E}DCD|{EF}GED CDE|FDD {E}DCD|{EF}G2E cBc| A2B G2A|{EF}GED CDE|FDE CA,C|D3 !fermata!D2||



HUMOURS OF BANDON, THE ("Sugra Droiciod-na-Bandann" or "Pléaráca na Bandan"). AKA and see "Humors of Listivain," "Jolly Old Woman," "Merry Old Woman (3) (The)," "Plangsty Callagh," "Terry's Rambles," "An t-seanbean sultmhar." Irish, Set Dance (6/8 time). G Major/Mixolydian. Standard tuning (fiddle). AABB. A Whig tune having eight bars in the 'A' part and sixteen bars in the second. It was known as far back as 1690 when the Irish (who had learned it from the supporters of William III) played it when they sacked Kilbrogan (Winstock, 1970, p. 26). As "Humors of Listivain" it appears in Jackson's Celebrated Irish Tunes, published in Dublin by Samuel Lee around 1775 (reprinted in 1790), a collection of tunes from gentleman piper Walker 'Piper' Jackson of the townland of Lisduan in the parish of Ballingarry, Aughrim, County Limerick. The tune was still current in 19th century County Limerick, for O'Neill (1913) mentions a retired Chicago policeman colleague remembered having danced it in his boyhood to the piping of Newcastle-West gentleman-musician Jack Moore. The title appears in the John Carroll manuscript of dance music entrusted to the Newberry Library in Chicago. Carroll was apparently stationed at Fort Niagara in the early 19th century and the dates 1804 and 1812 appear contained in the pages of the manuscript. Some believe "Humors of Bandon" to be a distanced version of "Black Joke (1) (The)." Fiddler James Morrison (1893-1947), originally from Drumfin, County Sligo, recorded the tune in New York in February, 1923. However, the earliest sound recording appears to be a wax cylinder recording made by Capt. Francis O'Neill of the playing of famed piper Patsy Touhey, around 1903. Another early field recording of the tune is from the tin whistle playing of Frank Brewe (or Brue), from Ruan, County Clare, made in London in October, 1915. The cylinder still exists in the Vaughan Williams Memorial Library.

The version that collector Henry Hudson (1798-1889, a collector, music editor, composer and dentist from Dublin) printed in The Dublin Magazine (1843) was also obtained from a piper:

A Munster Air, called "The Humours of Bandon." It was transmitted to us, as taken down by a fair correspndent at Castlemartyr, in the county of Cork, from the pipes of Jack Pigott, a well-known piper, justly celebrated throughout Barrymore and Imokilly and all the region round about.

In Hudson's 1841 manuscript collection the tune was entered as "Jolly Old Woman," his source attributed not to Jack Pigott, but to James Barton. Versions also appear as "Jolly Old Woman" in the first volume of Hamilton's Universal Tune Book (1846, p. 30) and as "An t-seanbean sultmhar" in Canon James Goodman's mid-19th century music manuscripts (vol. 3, p. 154), the cognate relationship with "Humors of Bandon" much more apparent in the first strain than the second. "The Humors of Bandon" (Pléaracha na Bandan) is the name of both contemporary and traditional set dances in Ireland.


Additional notes
Source for notated version : - Jack Pigott [Husdon]; New Jersey flute player Mike Rafferty, born in Ballinakill, Co. Galway, in 1926 [Harker]; Teresa Halpin, “a dancer and fiddler from Limerick" [Hardebeck]; the mid-19th cent. music manuscript collection of Canon James Goodman (County Cork) [Shields].

Printed sources : - Hardebeck (A Collection of Jigs and Reels vol. 2), Dublin, 1921; pp. 14-15. Harker (300 Tunes from Mike Rafferty), 2005; No. 297, p. 97. Hudson (The Dublin Magazine), March, 1843; No. 13. Kennedy (Jigs & Quicksteps, Trips & Humours), 1997; No. 63, p. 16. Levey (First Collection of the Dance Music of Ireland), 1858; No. 8, p. 4. McDermott (Allan's Irish Fiddler), c. 1920's; No. 109, p. 28. O'Neill (O'Neill's Irish Music), 1915; No. 391, p. 187. O'Neill (Krassen), 1976; p. 224. O'Neill (Music of Ireland: 1850 Melodies), 1903; No. 786, p. 146. O'Neill (Dance Music of Ireland: 1001 Gems), 1907; No. 977, p. 168. Roche (Collection of Irish Traditional Music, vol. 2), 1912; No. 272, p. 30. Shields (Tunes of the Munster Pipers), 1999; No. 138, p. 56.

Recorded sources : - Cló Iar-Chonnachta CICD 148, Mick Conneely - "Selkie" (2001). Columbia A3836 (78 RPM), piper Tom Ennis, fiddler James Morrison with pianist John Muller (1923). Regal Zonophone MR 1803 (78 RPM), James Morrison Band (1935). Shanachie 34013, Liz Carroll - "A Friend Indeed." Shanachie 34016, Joe Burke & Andy McGann - "The Funny Reel."

See also listing at :
Jane Keefer's Folk Music Index: An Index to Recorded Sources [1]
Alan Ng's Irishtune.info [2]
Hear recorded versions at the Comhaltas Archive [3]
Hear Tom Ennis's and James Morrison's 1923 recording at the Internet Archive [4] [5]



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