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KILLFADDA, THE. AKA - "Culfadda," "Coolfadda," "Kilfodda." AKA and see "Cruel Father (The), "Larry Redican's Reel (4)," "Redican's Reel." Irish, Reel. F Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AABB. Composed by New York fiddler Larry Redican (1908-1975), who was born in Boyle, County Roscommon but moved with his parents to Dublin at a young age. The tune was named for the birthplace of his mother, Culfadda, a townland and school approximately halfway between Keash (on the Boyle-Ballymote Rd.) and Gurteen (on the Boyle-Tobercurry Rd.), south County Sligo, near the border of County Roscommon. Redican emigrated to the United States in 1928 and worked for many years for the cosmetics company Estee Lauder in New York. He recorded some 78 rpm discs in the 1930's with the Rosaleen Quartet and in the late 1950's and early '60's was a member of the New York Céilí Band. During this period his playing was recorded by Ciaran Mac Mathuna and broadcast in Ireland on the radio program "The Job of Journeywork." The tune was called "Cruel Father (The)" by the Pride of Erin Ceili Band (who played it in the key of G Major), a corruption of Redican's title. Many pipers, flute players and accordionists play the tune in the key of G. New York musician, writer and researcher Don Meade finds that Redican borrowed the second part of "Hit or Miss Reel" in Ryan's Mammoth Collection (1883) for his tune, changing the key from 'C' to 'F'.
Source for notated version: flute player Charlie Lavin (b. 1940, Cloonshanville, near Frenchpark, County Roscommon) [Flaherty]; fiddler Larry Redican [Bulmer & Sharpley].
Printed sources: Bulmer & Sharpley (Music from Ireland), vol. 4, 1976; No. 25. Flaherty (Trip to Sligo), 1990; p. 152 (appears as "Larry Redican's"). Taylor (Traditional Irish Music: Karen Tweed's Irish Choice), 1994; p. 32 (appears as "The Kilfodda").
Recorded sources: Cló Iar-Chonnachta, CICD 148, Mick Conneely - "Selkie" (2001). RTE 124, Larry Redican - "Job of Journeywork."