Tommy Johnson

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X:1 T:Tommy Johnson M:6/8 L:1/8 R:March B:O'Neill's Music of Ireland. 1850 Melodies, 1903, p. 342, no. 1821 N:The final note of both parts has been corrected (D3 instead of D2). Z:François-Emmanuel de Wasseige K:D a3 g3|fdf ecA|d2f ecA|d2f ecA| dcd ede|fef gfg|a2G F2E|D3 D3:| |:(D2F) (E2G)|(F2A) G2F|GAB ABc|B3A3| GFG AGA|BAB cBc|d2G F2E|D3 D3:|]



TOMMY JOHNSON (Tomasin Mac Seoin). AKA and see "Tom Jones." Irish, March (6/8 time) or Jig. D Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AABB. Paul de Grae, comparing Levey's and O'Neill's versions of the tune, finds them identical, save for the very last note (which is an octave higher in Levey). De Grae also finds a cognate melody in O'Neill's "Tom Jones" printed in Waifs and Strays of Gaelic Melody (1922), but sourced by O'Neill to the end of the 19th century publications of Glasgow musician James Aird [1].

The tune may not be Irish, however--or at least it made a substantive stop in England--, for it was a very popular country dance melody that was printed in several mid-18th century publications and musicians’ manuscripts in England under the title "Tom Jones," named for the title character of Henry Fielding’s popular novel The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling (1749). "Tom Jones", dance and tune, was first printed by London publishers R. Baldwin in The London Magazine; or, The Gentleman’s Monthly Intelligencer (1750), S. Urban in Gentleman’s Magazine and Historical Chronical, David Ruthford in his Choice Collection of Sixty of the Most Celebrated Country Dances (1750), and John Johnson in his Choice Collection of 200 Country Dances, vol. 5 (1750).


Additional notes



Printed sources : - Levey (Dance Music of Ireland, 2nd Collection), 1873; No. 21, p. 9. O'Neill (Music of Ireland: 1850 Melodies), 1903; No. 1821, p. 342.






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  1. Paul de Grae, “Notes on Sources of Tunes in the O’Neill Collections”, 2017 [1].