Lesson 66. Maggie in the Woods

This is an often-played polka, normally in the key of G. Polkas, like marches, are in 2/4 time. That is, there are two groups of quavers, or the equivalent. Where you have two groups of four quavers, you should play: down on the first quaver down on the next quaver. In this tune the only time you play an up …

Gerry GaffneyLesson 66. Maggie in the Woods

Lesson 65. Jim Connolly’s Jig

This is one of Tony’s own compositions, which he wrote in honour of his friend Jim Connolly, an accordion player from Rossinver in North Leitrim. It’s played in C, with a capo on the 2nd fret. The second part is higher than the first. The “normal” speed recording is the first track off Tony’s CD “An Sliabh Glas” and includes …

Gerry GaffneyLesson 65. Jim Connolly’s Jig

Lesson 64. Gold Ring

There are two jigs that carry the name “The Gold Ring” (“An Fáinne Óir” in Irish). One is a 7-part jig in G particularly popular with pipers, and the other, a 4-part jig in D Major. This tune is the D Major tune, and it’s one of Tony’s all-time favourties. Although this is a D tune, Tony plays it in …

Gerry GaffneyLesson 64. Gold Ring

Lesson 63. Frost is All Over

A delightful jig with a strong underlying rhythm, which is probably why it is quite often used for playing at céilithe (social dances). In the second bars of both the third and fourth lines you will note that Tony uses the same finger for the first two notes of those bars (G and F#), plays the high B with his …

Gerry GaffneyLesson 63. Frost is All Over

Lesson 62. First Clan March of the O’Sullivans

Marches usually have a 2/4 time signature, but this tune is one of a number of tunes designated as a march, but carrying a 6/8 time signature. (“The Butcher’s March” is another.) This tune is also quite often played as just a normal jig as part of a set. It’s fairly compact in the left hand, only going up to …

Gerry GaffneyLesson 62. First Clan March of the O’Sullivans