Lightly Tripping

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LIGHTLY TRIPPING. Irish, Set Dance (6/8 time). D Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AB. A 'square' set dance tune--eight measures in each part.

Source for notated version: "Taken down from Ned Goggin, the professional fiddler of Glenosheen Co. Limerick, about 1848" [Joyce]. Irish collector and antiquarian Patrick Weston Joyce (1827-1914) collected a number of tunes and airs from Goggin in his home area of Limerick around the time of the Great Famine; he was one of Joyce's primary informants in the years 1844-50, and Joyce knew him from childhood. Joyce later in life wrote:

As a curious illustration of how some of these old Irish airs were captured, I will instance the air called 'The Orangeman' published in my Old Irish Folk Music and Songs, p. 4. There are still some old people to the fore who, like myself, can recall the great snow and wind storm of the 15th of February, 1838. It began in the morning, and continued coming down in volumes without intermission all that day and night. About eleven o'clock that morning, Ned Goggin, on his way to his home up in the mountain gap, called at our hime for shelter till the snow should cease. He sat by the kitchen fire till he was well thawed, and then, to our great delight, he drew out his fiddle from its case, and began to play. Tune followed tune, till at last he struck up the 'Orangeman', at which we were delighted, for the air is a beautiful minor one, and Ned played it well. I was then only eleven years old, and of course, could not write music; but he played it over and over again till I learned it perfectly. Years passed by; I was in Dublin, and was diligently recalling all my tunes for Dr. Petrie, as I have said, but the 'Orangeman' had not yet come forward, and it might have been forgotten and lost, but for a dream. In the middle of one winter night, the great snow with Ned goggin and his music passed before me–tremnel, as the Irish song-writers would say–through my dream, and I woke up actually whistling the tune. Greatly delighted, I started up–a light, a pencil, and a bit of paper, and there was the first bar securely captured; the bird was, as it were, caught and held by the tail.


Printed sources: Joyce (Old Irish Folk Music and Song), 1909; No. 17, p. 11. Miller (Fiddler's Throne), 2004; No. 70, p. 52.

Recorded sources: Shanachie 79054, Kevin Carroll & Liz Carroll – "Fathers and Daughters" (1985).




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