An Old Time playing of an Irish tune by fiddler Bill Malley of County Clare, Ireland – first in a set with a stonking rendering of the upbeat E-B-E Reel, composed by Irish-American fiddler Liz Carroll.
As well as additional notes on these musicians and tunes, video-poster secondcousincurly writes a fascinating piece here on the importance of fiddle camps to American traditional music.
In eighteenth-century England, the two John Walshes*, father and son, dominated music publishing. John Walsh Snr was printing engraved music on The Strand, London, by 1690, and later John Walsh Jnr won what we would now call ‘exclusive rights’ to Handel’s music.
Clark’s was first published in the Walshes’ 1730 tunes collection, under the snappy title The Third Book of the most celebrated jiggs, Lancashire hornpipes, Scotch and Highland lilts, Northern frisks, Morris’s and Cheshire rounds with hornpipes the bagpipe manner, to which is added the Black Joak, the White Joak, the Brown,, the Red, and the Yellow Joaks. With variety of whims and fancies of diff’rent humour, fitted to the genious of publick performers.
Perhaps they took editorial advice, or wanted to pay their engraver less, but the reprint title shrank to Three Extraordinary Collections, Early 18th century dance music for those who play publick.
Well, ‘those who play publick’ are still playing the Walshes’ tunes – and this particular hornpipe is one of my favourites.
Emily Askew (fiddle), John Dipper (fiddle), Nicola Lyons (fiddle), Adrian Lever (guitar)
Gorgeously textured performance by the London-based fiddle group at Sidmouth Folk Week 2015.
Becky Price (accordion), Tim Perkins (bouzouki/guitar), Richard Heacock (fiddle/viola), Daniel Wolverson (fiddle/viola)
This utterly danceable version is from the group’s 2008 album Feet, Don’t Fail Me Now, available on Spotify (the link is to the full album; it seems impossible to link to the single tune). You can find the sheet music for the tune in their first collection of English and Welsh country dance tunes The Boldwood Dancing Master, available from their website (see below).
Every couple of weeks or so I feature a tune that's caught my fancy – audio/video clips of brilliant musicians playing great, perhaps uncommon tunes to learn by ear. Most are from the English and American Old-time traditions; some hail from other musical worlds ‒ Scandi, perhaps, or French. But whatever you play ‒ fiddles or frets, free-reeds or fipples ‒ I hope you enjoy catching these wonderful tunes!