Madam Bonaparte

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X:1 T:Madam Bonaparte M:C L:1/8 S:O'Neill - Dance Music of Ireland: 1001 Gems (1907), No. 962 Z:AK/Fiddler's Companion R:Set Dance (moderate hornpipe rhythm and tempo) K:A e/d/|c2 cB cecA|d2 dc dfdB|Aceg agaf|e2 ef edcB| c2 cB cecA|dcde fgaf|ecAc dBGB|A2A2A2:| |:cB|Aceg agaf|e2 ef edcB|Aceg agaf|e2 ef edcB| ceAe ceAe|dfBf dfBf|ceAe ceAe|GBEB GBEB| ceAe ceAe|dcde fgaf|ecAc dBGB|A2A2A2:|

MADAM(E) BONAPARTE (Banflait Bonapart). AKA and see "Bonaparte's Advance." Irish, Set Dance (4/4 time). G Major (Johnson, Moylan, Mulvihill, O'Neill/Krassen, Welling, Williamson): A Major (O'Neill/1915). Standard tuning (fiddle). AABB (most versions): AABB'CC (Williamson). The tune is named in honor of Bonaparte's wife, the Empress Josephine, probably reflecting the Irish sympathy with powerful Catholic France and the hope that Napoleon might at some point aid the cause of Irish independence. According to Donal Hickey (Stone Mad for Music, 1999), "Madame Bonaparte" was associated with James Gandsey, 'the Killarney Minstrel', who died in 1857 at the age of 90. Gandsey survives in folk memory in the Sliabh Luachra (County Kerry/Cork border) region and some facts are clearly remembered. The son of a soldier in Ross Castle and a native Killarney mother, Gandsey was almost completely blinded in infancy by smallpox. He became known as Lord Headley's Piper and contributed several tunes to the regional repertoire, including as well "Jackson's Morning Brush" and "Fox Chase (3) (The)." He is buried in Muckross Abbey, Killarney, where a plaque has been erected in his memory. See also the related "Mike Sullivan's Hornpipe (1)."

Additional notes
Source for notated version : - piper Finbar Furey (Ireland) [Williamson]; accordion player Johnny O'Leary (Sliabh Luachra), recorded at Ballydesmond, February, 1973 [Moylan].

Printed sources : - Cranitch (Irish Fiddle Book), 1996; No. 93, p. 163. Giblin (Collection of Traditional Irish Dance Music), 1928; 61 (appears as untitled hornpipe). Johnson (The Kitchen Musician No. 5: Mostly Irish Airs), 1985 (revised 2000); p. 14. Moylan (Johnny O'Leary), 1994; No. 22, p. 13. Mulvihill (1st Collection), 1986; No. 5, p. 110. Northumbrian Pipers' Society Tunebook, 1985; p. 47. O'Neill (Krassen), 1976; p. 221. O'Neill (O'Neill's Irish Music), 1915; No. 399, p. 191. O'Neill (Dance Music of Ireland: 1001 Gems), 1907; No. 962, p. 165. Welling (Welling's Hartford Collection), 1976; p. 23. Williamson (English, Welsh, Scottish and Irish Fiddle Tunes), 1976; p. 87.

Recorded sources : - Claddagh Records CCF31CD, John Doherty - "The Floating Bow" (1996, paired with "Spirits of Wine"). Extra 1077, "Finbar Furey Traditional Irish Pipe Music." F&W Records 5, Canterbury Dance Orchestra--"Mistwold." Folkways FTS 31098, Ken Perlman - "Clawhammer Banjo and Fingerstyle Guitar Solos." Island ILPS9432, The Chieftains - "Bonaparte's Retreat" (1976).

See also listing at :
Jane Keefer's Folk Music Index: An Index to Recorded Sources [1]
Alan Ng's [2]
See the set dance performed on youtube [3]

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