Old Langolee

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OLD LANGOLEE/LANGALEE, THE (An Sean Langoli). AKA and see "Humors of Ballamaguiry," "Humors of Limerick (5)," "Lango Lee a New Way," "Looney McTowlter," "Smile on for Thy Young Days." Irish, Air (6/8 time, "playful" “Slow”) or Jig. D Major/Mixolydian (Clinton): G Major/Mixolydian (Kerr/vol. 2, O'Farrell, O'Neill): A Major/Mixolydian (Kerr vol. 3). Standard tuning (fiddle). AB (O'Neill): AABB (Kerr). 'Lango Lee' supposedly derives from an Irish phrase for an engorged penis, although Francis O'Neill maintained "It has never been our good fortune to learn the meaning or derivation of the word or phrase "Langolee"..." (Irish Folk Music, 1910). Glasgow publisher James Aird printed the tune as "Lango Lee a New Way" in his Selections. "Old Lango Lee" was included in Crotch's Specimens of various styles of music referred to in a Course of Lectures read at Oxford and London, and adapted to keyed instruments by W. Crotch, Mus. Doc., Prof. Mus. Oxon. Crotch, who was Principal of the Royal Academy of Music (London) from 1823-1832 delivered lectures on various types of national music from 1800-1804 and 1820, and had them bound in three volumes, familiarly referred to as "Crotch's Specimens". The air is one of the Irish "specimens" contained in volume 1.

O'Farrell indicates 'f' natural notes in the first and third measures of the 'B' part in his c. 1808 publication. Thomas Moore used the air for his song "Sing, Sing, Music was Given," as did Oliver Goldsmith for a song (beginning: "Ah me! when shall I marry me? Lovers are plenty but fail to relieve me") in his comedy She Stoops to Conquer (1773)--although it was omitted because the actress who played Miss Hardcastle did not sing.

Source for notated version:

Printed sources: Clinton (Gems of Ireland: 200 Airs), 1841; No. 1, p. 1. P.M. Haverty (One Hundred Irish Airs vol. 1), 1858; No. 27, p. 11. Kerr (Merry Melodies, vol. 2), c. 1880’s; No. 258, p. 28. Kerr (Merry Melodies, vol. 3), c. 1880’s; No. 226, p. 26. O'Farrell (Pocket Companion, vol. III), c. 1808; p. 15. O'Neill (Music of Ireland: 1850 Melodies), 1903; No. 247, p. 43.

Recorded sources: BEJOCD-28, The Mellstock Band - "The Dance at the Phoenix: Village Band Music from Hardy's Wessex and Beyond."




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