Tunes from Swithun

Swithun Goodbody is a Ballydehob session regular and frequently contributes new repertoire to the group. We are pleased to have some tracks from him in this collection.

Firstly, a slow air with a story attached: Mná na hÉireann (Women of Ireland):

 

If you ever saw Stanley Kubrick’s 1975 film Barry Lyndon you will have heard this: the recurring love theme from that film is played by the Chieftains and taken from one of their earliest albums (1973) – incidentally the first to feature Derek Bell on the harp. The music was composed by Seán Ó Riada to words by the Ulster poet Peadar Ó Doirnin (1700 – 1769):

…Tá bean in Éirinn a bhronnfadh séad dom ‘s mo sháith le n-ól
‘S tá bean in Éirinn ba bhinne léithe mo ráfla ceoil ná seinm téad
Tá bean in Éirinn, ‘s níorbh fhearr léi beo
Mise ag léimneach nó leagtha I gcré is mo thárr faoi fhód
Tá bean in Éirinn a bheadh ag éad liom mur’ bhfaighfinn ach póg
Ó bhean ar aonach, nach ait an scéala, is mo dháimh féin leo
Tá bean ab fhearr liom nó cath is céad dhíobh nach bhfagham go deo
Is tá cailín spéiriúil ag fear gan bhéarla, dubhghránna cróin
Tá bean in Éirinn a bhronnfadh séad dom is mo sháith le n-ól
Tá bean in Éirinn s’ba bhinne léithe mo ráfla ceoil ná seinm téad
Tá bean in Éirinn is níorbh fhearr léi beo
Mise ag léimneach nó leagtha I gcré ‘s mo thárr faoi fhód…

 

Next, Swithun plays two Kerry polkas Ballydesmond Number 2 followed by Knockabower:

 

Knockabower – a lovely three-part polka – goes by a variety of names. It’s most likely to be from Knockaboul, in the Sliabh Luachra area on the Cork / Kerry borders, although there is a suggestion that the name should be Knocknabowl – from the Irish `Cnoc na buaile’ – The hill of the milking place.

Swithun has also given us Brian Boru’s March on the tin whistle:

 

Battle of Clontarf – painted by Hugh Frazer, 1826

Brian Boru (you’ll find him here) died at the Battle of Clontarf on 23rd April 1014. That’s exactly 1,006 years ago! So this is a timely post…

Swithun lives just over the hill from us, so I can happily say ‘Thank you, neighbour!’

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s