Music-Song-and Dance:

Just what is Irish Music?

It is helpful to think of Irish music as a large ocean of different styles and functions. Some are regional and others have become international But it is also a sea of pieces of elements triplets, for example,. In addition it is a cast of characters -personas. Mermaids, goddesses, drinkers, workers, soldiers, dancers, Sometimes people just sit down and play, dance and sing in the first person. .Prior to the 19th century Ireland possessed several forms of music they included the Professional  music of the Bard and court Harper tradition, the Professional Social Music of the dance, wedding or processional bands, and,  a strong virtuoso tradition- the music of competitions. There is also music in the first person:  the Folk Music of the Ordinary people- the plowman in the field and the weaver at the loom. The latter is perhaps my favorite it comes free from the soul and travels freely upon the wind! Find some today! 
To Music Song and Dance Main Menu Clickit right here!


All about Music song and Dance
A few midi Irish Music files to play while you read click here!

The Lambeg Drum-A .wav file

A Survey of the Irish Music Tradition- lots of Songs! Click here

Some  classic songs for the pub... A few songs! 

Some notes on Irish music can be found here just click

Here you will find music of the neglected traditions of Unionist Ulster together with sources of recordings and information. To the Ulster Songbook-Some oft overlooked songs of the Island of Ireland-Unfurll those Banners! 

The Lambeg Drum of Northern Ireland 
An Ancient Tradition To the Lambeg Article

For the James Connolly Songbook:  click

For the Irish National Anthem click here

For a bit on dance click here


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Dance-  It is difficult to avoid letting your impressions of Irish Music be dominated by dance because it is  everywhere.
-keep in mind that a dance tune slowed
down can become a great song or slow air! 
Here are the basic types of Irish Dance:

Reel - in 4/4 time, usually fast, the most popular of rhythms 
 Jig - in 6/8, derived from the European gigues 
 Hornpipe - in 4/4 time but with every second beat strongly accented 
 Polka - local to the Cork/Kerry region,  like European polkas.  Ok more tro come here soon...
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The Irish National Anthem
Abhrán na bhfiann ,Written in 1907 . It was popular in the Irish Volunteer Force. General public performance was duringthe Easter rising of 1916. It became the national anthem in 1926. Only the chorus is played. of the Irish National Anthem

For notation click here

For midi sound click here

A Soldiers Song


Seo dhibh a cha/irde duan O/glaigh,
Cathre/imeach briomhar ceolmhar,
A/r dtinte cna/mh go buacach ta/id,
'S an spe/ir go min re/altogach
Is fonnmhar faobhrach sinn chun gleo
'S go tiu/nmhar gle/ roimh thi/ocht do'n lo/
Fe/ chiu/nas chaomh na hoiche ar seol:
Seo libh canai/dh Amhra/n na bhFiann

Sinne Firnna Fa/il
A ta/ fe/ gheall ag E/irinn,
buion da/r slua
Thar toinn do ra/inig chugainn,
Fe/ mho/id bheith saor.
Sean ti/r a/r sinsir feasta
Ni/ fhagfar fe/'n tiora/n na/ fe'/n tra/il
Anocht a the/am sa bhearna bhaoil,
Le gean ar Ghaeil chun ba/is no/ saoil
Le guna screach fe/ la/mhach na bpile/ar
Seo libh canai/dh Amhra/n na bhFiann.

Cois ba/nta re/idhe, ar a/rdaibh sle/ibhe,
Ba bhuachach a/r sinsir romhainn,
Ag la/mhach go tre/an fe/'n sa/r-bhrat se/in
Ta/ thuas sa ghaoith go seolta
Ba dhu/chas riamh d'a/r gcine cha/idh
Gan iompa/il siar o/ imirt a/ir,
'S ag siu/l mar iad i gcoinne na/mhad
Seo libh, canai/dh Amhra/n na bhFiann


A bhui/on na/ch fann d'fhuil Ghaeil is Gall,
Sin breacadh lae na saoirse,
Ta sce/imhle 's scanradh i gcroi/the namhad,
Roimh ranna laochra a/r dtire.
A/r dtinte is tre/ith gan spre/ach anois,
Sin luisne ghle/ san spe/ir anoir,
'S an bi/obha i raon na bpile/ar agaibh:
Seo libh, canai/dh Amhra/n na bh Fiann.


English translation
We'll sing song, a soldier's song,
With cheering rousing chorus,
As round our blazing fires we throng,
The starry heavens o'er us;
Impatient for the coming fight,
And as we wait the morning's light,
Here in the silence of the night,
We'll chant a soldier's song.

Soldiers are we
whose lives are pledged to Ireland;
Some have come
from a land beyond the wave.
Sworn to be free,
No more our ancient sire land
Shall shelter the despot or the slave.
Tonight we man the gap of danger
In Erin's cause, come woe or weal
'Mid cannons' roar and rifles peal,

We'll chant a soldier's song

In valley green, on towering crag,
Our fathers fought before us,
And conquered 'neath the same old flag
That's proudly floating o'er us.
We're children of a fighting race,
That never yet has known disgrace,
And as we march, the foe to face,
We'll chant a soldier's song
Sons of the Gael! Men of the Pale!
The long watched day is breaking;
The serried ranks of Inisfail
Shall set the Tyrant quaking.
Our camp fires now are burning low;
See in the east a silv'ry glow,
Out yonder waits the Saxon foe,
So chant a soldier's song.

  For midi sound click here

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The Irish Music Box! 
Eamonn an Chniuic
The Irish Rover 
The Foggy Dew
Clothier's March
The Unicorn Song
The Blarney Pilgrim Jig 
Ricketts Hornpipe 
The Priest's Leap 
Nancy Whisky Ballad 

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