Annotation:Jim Kennedy's Favorite

Find traditional instrumental music


X:1 T:Jim Kennedy's Favorite M:C| L:1/8 R:Reel S:O'Neill - Dance Music of Ireland: 1001 Gems (1907), No. 561 Z:AK/Fiddler's Companion K:E Minor (3GGG GA BE E2|BedE BEEF|GFGA BAB^d|1 (3efg f^d edeg:|2 (3efg f^d e2|| ef|(3gag (3fgf edB^c|d2 ed Bd d2|(3gag (3fgf edB^d|(3efg f^d e2 ef| (3gag (3fgf edB^c|d2 ed Bd d2|bgaf gfe^d|(3efg f^d e2g2||

James Kennedy is standing in the back row, extreme right.
JIM KENNEDY'S FAVORITE (Roga Seamus Uí Ceinneidig). AKA and see "Bundle of Straw (The)," "Corry Boys (The)," "Follow me to Carlow," "Hare's Foot (The)," "Hare's Paw (1)," "Kennedy's Favourite," "Kennedy's Reel," "Lowlands of Scotland (The)," "Silvermines (1) (The)," "Tralee Lasses (The)." Irish, Reel. E Dorian. Standard tuning (fiddle). AA'B. The title probably refers to Chicago fiddler and park policeman James Kennedy, whom O'Neill called "a sweet, expressive fiddler" (Irish Minstrels and Musicians, p. 368). Kennedy was born in the early 1860's in Ireland, and learned his music from his father. A number of tunes in the early O'Neill collections are attributed to him as source. O'Neill clearly held him in high regard as a musician, for in a 1906 letter to Alfred Percival Graves in 1906 (printed in "A Few Gossipy Notes" in the Journal of the Irish Folk Song Society, London, O'Neill wrote: "James and Ellen Kennedy, Ballinamore, Leitrim, fine violinists: father a noted player, said to be the best in the country--James is remarkable for his smooth, round tones, and the entire absence of scratching of bow." However, there is also a story that "Jim Kennedy's Favorite" was named for a traveling fiddler who taught tunes to Bill "The Weaver" Murphy, fiddle Dennis Murphy's father[1].

The tune, however, is only a version of a reel that had been circulating. Paul de Grae points out that an untitled version was printed by R.M. Levey in his first volume of Irish tunes (1856, No. 56), while collector P.W. Joyce and James S. Kerr both printed versions in the 1870's under titles "Silvermines (1) (The)", "Lowlands of Scotland (The)" and "Bundle of Straw (The)"[2].

Additional notes
Source for notated version : - Denis Murphy (1910-1974, Lisheen, County Kerry) [Beisswenger].

Printed sources : - Beisswenger (Irish Fiddle Music from Counties Cork and Kerry), 2012; p. 65. O'Neill (Music of Ireland: 1850 Melodies), 1903; No. 1296, p. 243. O'Neill (Dance Music of Ireland: 1001 Gems), 1907; No. 561, p. 104.

Recorded sources : - RTE CD 183, Denis Murphy - "Music from Sliabh Luachra" (1995. Originally recorded in 1949).

See also listing at :
Alan Ng's [1]

Back to Jim Kennedy's Favorite

(0 votes)

  1. Peter Browne, liner notes to RTE CD 183, Denis Murphy - "Music from Sliabh Luachra" (1995).
  2. Paul de Grae, “Notes on Sources to Tunes in the O’Neill Collections”, 2017 [2]