||The Man of the House / The Providence Reel (Reels)
||Maud Millar (Reel)
||Miss Langford's Reel / The Tailor's Thimble (Reels)
||Sliabh na mBan (Air)
||Jenny Picking Cockles / Farewell to Connaught (Reels)
||The Primrose Vale / Leitrim Fancy (Jigs)
||The Mystery Reel (Reel)
||Lucy Campbell (Reels)
||The Night Cap / The Frost is All Over (Jigs)
||Wheels of the World / Delaney's Frolics (Reels)
||Byrne's Hornpipe / Mullingar Races (Hornpipes)
||Maid of Mount Kisco (Reel)
||The New Road / Fisherman's Lilt / Humours of Westport (Reels)
||She Lived beside the Anner (Slow Air)
||Micho Russell's Mason's Apron (Reel)
||Flogging Reel / Johnny Gorman's (Reels)
||Wonder Hornpipe / The Foxhunter's Reel (Hornpipe/Reel)
||Free and Easy (Reel)
Frankie Gavin - Fiddle &
Brian McGrath - Piano & Banjo
Alec Finn - Bouzouki
Sean Gavin - Accordion
Reels & Rock n' Roll
Produced by - Frankie Gavin
Recorded & mixed at - LG Studios
, Cahanagh, Co. Longford,
Ireland / Engineered by - Paul Gurney
/ Mastering & Sleeve
design by - Bruno Staehelin
of Open Ear Productions Ltd., Ireland
Cover Photography by - Mike Shaughnessy
Notes based on information supplied by Orla Henihan
of the Irish Traditional Music Archive.
Special thanks to John Carty for
his encouragement and inspiration during this recording. Also to Tracy
and Ron Harris for putting my website together. www.frankiegavin.com
1) The Man of the House (Reel)
/ The Providence Reel
The Man of the House was discovered by Captain Francis O'Neill in
a manuscript of Cavan music given to him by Philip J. O'Reilly in
Chicago. O'Neill published it there in 1903 in his highly influential
collection O'Neill's music of Ireland. In recent years it has been
popularised as 'Ginley's Fancy' by the master Galway accordion player
The second tune, a fairly modern tune believed to have been composed
as 'The Rossport Reel' by the fiddle player John McGrath of Rossport,
Co. Mayo, who spent most of his life (1900 - 1955) in New York. Published
under that title by Jerry O'Brien in Irish Folk Dance Music in Boston
about 1950, it is commonly known nowadays by the title used here.
According to the late Danny O'Donnell of Donegal, the new name was
given to it by Michael Coleman, Louis Quinn and others on a trip to
Providence, Rode Island.
2) Maud Millar (Reel)
Noted in Chicago from the Offaly piper Barney Delaney by his brother-in-law
Captain Francis O'Neill, published by O'Neill in 1903, and popularised
by James Morrison on a 1935 New York recording.
3) Miss Langford's Reel / The Tailor's Thimble (Reel)
The first tune owes its present popularity to a recording made in
New York in 1935 by the Sligo fiddle player James Morrison. It is
also known as 'The Lass of Carracastle' from a 1934 recording by Paddy
Sweeney, another Sligo fiddle player in New York
The Tailor's Thimble was taught by the Leitrim flute player John McKenna
to James Morrison in New York, and recorded by them as a fiddle and
flute duet in 1929. It was published by Breandan Breatnach in his
seminal collection Ceol Rince na hEireann in 1963 from the playing
of Dublin whistle player Ned Stapleton. The title is more commonly
used for a jig.
4) Sliabh NA mBan (Air)
The melody of a contemporary song in Irish commemorating a battle
fought during the 1798 rebellion on the slopes of Slievenamon ('The
Mountain of Women') near Clonmel, Co. Tipperary. The Irish side was
5) Jenny Pickling Cockles (Reels) /Farewell to Connaught
Noted in Chicago by Francis O'Neill from Leitrim piper Sergeant James
Early, a policeman colleague of O'Neill's who made a manuscript collection
of older Leitrim music, and published by O'Neill's in 1903. The earliest
commercial recording of the tune seems to be that made by the Flanagan
Brothers in New York in 1923. Also recorded by the Donegal fiddle
player Neilidh Boyle in 1937, it seems related to other northern tunes.
This was a great favourite of the late Jimmy Cummins who played the
accordion, and many's the time he gave me a lift from Dublin in his
fruit truck. A gentleman if ever there was one.
The second tune was sent in manuscript to Captain O'Neill in Chicago
by Francis E. Walsh who had written it down in San Francisco from
John Kelly, a Roscommon fiddle player. O'Neill published it in 1924
in a second edition of his Waifs and Strays of Gaelic Melody. It doesn't
seem to have been recorded until the LP era of the late 1960's.
6) The Primrose Vale (Jig) / Leitrim Fancy (Jig)
Published by Jerry O'Brien in Boston about 1950 as 'Wicky Sears'.
Collected by Breandan Breathnach from the Dublin accordion player
Sonny Brogan in the 1950's and published by him in 1963. Often called
'the Lark in the Strand' (one of several) and commonly recorded.
The Leitrim Fancy was collected in the 1950's by Breandan Breathnach
from the Dublin piper Michael Brophy and published by him in 1963.
Made famous in our own day by the Bothy Band who recorded it in 1977.
The title is more commonly used for a hornpipe.
7) The Mystery Reel
This tune I would like to think I wrote myself! Sadly, not the case.
It has baffled the 'experts' as to it's origin, but it is the type
of tune Eddie Maloney would have played as my good friend Joe Burke
pointed out to me.
8) Lucy Campbell (Reel)
A Scottish reel first published in the late 1700's and known in many
versions. It has long been popular in Ireland. A version similar to
this one was collected in Munster in the mid-19th century by the Rev.
James Goodman. An early recording was made by the Leitrim piper Michael
Gallagher in New York about 1924, although the Sligo fiddle player
Michael Coleman's 1935 recording is more famous.
9) The Night Cap (Jig) / The Frost is All Over (Jig)
The Night Cap was first published by Francis O'Neill in 1903 from
his own childhood recollections and first recorded seemingly by fiddle
player John Gerrity in New York in 1920. This version is from a 1935
New York recording by the Leitrim banjo-mandolin player Michael Gaffney,
the musical partner of John McKenna. I got this tune from Jackie Small,
who got it from Harry Bradshaw and Nicholas Carolan.
The Frost is All Over also known as 'The Potatoes are Dug and the
Frost is All Over' which is the first line of one of several songs
written to this widespread air. It seems to have been first collected
by George Petrie in the mid-19th century from a Co. Armagh source,
and first recorded in New York in 1923 by Tom Ennis of Chicago on
pipes, Tom Quigley on fiddle and John Muller on piano.
10) Wheels of the World Wheels for the World (Reel)
/ Delaney's Frolics (Reel)
This version of the Wheels of the World is from a recording made by
James Morrison in New York in December 1903. It was recorded in Chicago
in the same month by fiddle players Francis Cashin and Tom Cawley
with accompaniment by a pianist named Ford. A song of the same title
is found on 19th-century ballad sheets. Henry Ford, the Cork motor
car legend, was very fond of fiddle music, and Ann Savoy from Eunice,
Louisiana informed me that the great Henry had fiddle players performing
at all his new car launches. Clever Man was our Henry!
The second piece was first published as 'The Dunboyne [Co. Meath]
Straw Plaiters' by P.W. Joyce in 1909 in his Old Irish Folk Music
and Songs, and recorded as 'Delaney's Frolics' on a privately made
cylinder in the United States by the Galway professional piper Patsy
Touhey about 1900. It was named after Barney Delaney.
11) Byrne's Hornpipe / Mullingar Races (Hornpipes)
The first tune was collected by Francis O'Neill from Sergeant Early
and published by him in 1903. It was recorded by the Ballinakill Ceili
Band of Galway in the early 1930's.
Mullingar Races, learned as 'May Day' by P.W. Joyce from his father
in Limerick, and also heard by Joyce in 1853 played by miners in Glenmalure,
Co. Wicklow. Published as a reel 'The Mullingar Races' by Francis
O'Neill in 1903 and popularised by Sligo fiddle player Paddy Kiloran
and Paddy Sweeney on a New York recording of 1931.
12) Maid of Mount Kisco (Reel)
Believed to have been composed or adapted from another tune by the
Sligo fiddle player Paddy Killoran. It was recorded by him in New
York in 1937, and published by Jerry O'Brien in Boston about 1950.
Mount Kisco is in upper New York State.
13) The New Road (Reel) / Fisherman's Lilt (Reel) /
Humour of Westport (Reel)
A version of 'The New Road' was given to Francis O'Neill by his policeman
colleague Sergeant James O'Neill of County Down and published by Francis
in 1903. Galway fiddle player Paddy Fahy has been credited with re-working
The second tune was published by Francis O'Neill in 1903 as 'Molly,
What Ails You?' and other other titles. This version is from a 1928
New York recording by James Morrison. The tune was recorded by Michael
Coleman as 'The Kerryman's Daughter'.
Humours of Westport was published by O'Neill in 1903 and popularised
by James Morrison as 'The Milestone at the Garden' on a New York recording
The three reels here are all about the life
and soul of the Irish music scene in New York in the 1920's. I have
tried to capture this feeling as best I could, with the help of Brian
McGrath doing special effects on the Banjo.
14) She Lived beside the Anner (Slow Air)
The original melody of the song of the same name by the Tipperary
Fenian novelist and poet Charles J. Kickham (1828 - 1882). The song
is a politically charged song about emigration which has retained
its popularity now for more than a century.
I think the first time I heard this was in our pub in Corrandulla,
Co. Galway, when I was five or six years of age. It came to my mind
when we were recording, and it was a great favourite of my late father
JJ. He loved slow airs, and I regret not playing them for him whenever
he would ask me. So this is one of two slow airs on this album which
I dedicate to him.
15) The Mason's Apron (Reel)
An 18th century English tune which has long been popular in Ireland.
This is the version of Micho Russell who learned it from a neighboring
concertina player Patrick Flanagan. It seems to have been first recorded
by the New York accordion player John J. Kimmel in 1915.
The late and Great Micho taught me this tune on a tour of Germany
which I had the privilege of being on with him some six or seven years
16) Floggin Reel / Johnny Gorman's (Reel)
The first tune is originally a Scottish reel generally known as 'The
Flagon Reel' but long popular in Ireland and widely published and
recorded here. It was published in Dublin as early as 1842 and collected
in Munster about the same time by the Rev. James Goodman. It seems
to have been commercially recorded in 1917 in New York by accordion
player Patrick J. Scanlon, and John Kimmel also recorded it there
the same year.
Johnny Gorman's Reel is named from a Co. Roscommon professional piper
and fiddle player who died in tragic circumstances in 1917, and commercially
recorded by Dublin piper William N. Andrews in 1930. A version is
commonly called 'The Beauty Spot'.
17) Wonder Hornpipe / The Foxhunter's Reel
The first tune is an English or Scottish hornpipe in print since the
19th century. This version is from a 1956 recording by the Wexford
accordion player George Ross, who may have been influenced by a 1951
recording by the Scottish accordionist William Starr.
This version of the Foxhunter's Reel became known in the 1960s from
the fiddle playing of Patrick Kelly of Cree, Co. Clare (1903 - 1975).
Kelly had inherited music from George Whelan, a travelling Kerry fiddle
master who had come to Clare in the 1880s. He played this melody with
an unusual AEAE tuning. The Scottish reel 'Greig's Pipes' is related.
18) Free and Easy (Mike Flanagan's
Discovered by Francis O'Neill in a manuscript
collection of music played by Jeremiah Breen, a blind North Kerry
fiddle player of the 19th century, and published by him in 1922 in
the first edition of Waifs and Strays of Gaelic Melody. It has rarely
THE Flanagan Family gave me Mike's famous banjo to keep and use in
my music whenever possible. It is featured here in true Mike Flanaghan
style by Brian McGrath.
I met Mike in Albany NY and he was so thrilled when DE Dannan brought
the music of the twenties back to life with the recording of "My
Irish Molly O"