DIVERSITY OF TITLES - TUNES WITH MORE THAN ONE NAME
“Strange power hath memory to fill the ear,
With music wafted from the distant past;
From scenes and times that would not, could not last;
When cherished strains, melodious deep and clear,
Burst from the lips of friends and kindred dear.”
THE bewildering variety of settings or versions of traditional Irish tunes is fully equaled by the confusing diversity of names by which many of them are known.
To the collector of fugitive melodies within a limited territory in Ireland, the few difficulties of this nature encountered are inconsequential. When the field of inquiry is extended, the perplexities arising from the multiplicity of titles in different localities increase, until they reach the maximum in America, where natives of probably every parish in Ireland are to be met.
Were melodies known by but one name, the classification of variants and the avoidance of duplicates would be quite a simple matter.
No doubt this diversity and duplication of titles, increasing in the flight of years, existed from the earliest times of which we have any authentic records.
In looking over any printed or manuscript collection of Irish music, our hopes of finding something new under names to us unfamiliar, are not infrequently doomed to disappointment, for the title only too often disguised the identity of a well-known tune.
Every number must be played over and carefully considered, for many tunes have been previously published under different names, and, besides, many others prove to be merely variants of tunes already in our collections.
The writer, a native of Cork, the county in which Forde compiled much of his manuscript collection, and contiguous to County Limerick, where Dr. P. W. Joyce obtained most of the music which he has published, recognizes a large portion of it, especially the dance tunes, as the same, slightly varied and differently named, which he had learned in his boyhood days, and subsequently published in O’Neill’s Music of Ireland and in The Dance Music of Ireland.
The reader can form some idea of the tremendous amount of research necessary in order to acquire even a fair knowledge of the subject, from the following instances:
A ballad called “The Fair at Dungarvan” was a great favorite in Munster, at least in the middle of the last century. The air, which I remembered since boyhood, was noted down and printed under that name, no other being known for it at the time. It developed, however, that it was an air of great antiquity, much varied by time and taste, but never beyond easy identification. As “Rose Connolly,” Bunting printed it in 1840 in his third collection, The Ancient Music of Ireland, and notes that it was obtained in Coleraine in 1811, “author and date unknown.” It is to be found under that name also in Surenne’s Songs of Ireland, published in 1854. Probably its most ancient title was “The Lament for Cill Caisi,” or “Kilcash,” a setting of which is to be found in Dr. Petrie’s Complete Collection of Irish Music. Among the songs which I find are sung to this air are: “Alas, My Bright Lady,” “Nelly, My Love, and Me,” “There is a Beech-tree Grove,” and “Were You Ever in Sweet Tipperary?”
One of the earliest recollections of youth is my father’s singing of a very affecting song, the last line of every verse being Mo Muirnin na Gruaige Baine. This fine old air is mentioned in Hardiman’s Irish Minstrelsy, published in 1831, as another of these wandering melodies well known among the peasantry of the southern and western parts of Ireland.
The original Irish stanzas of the song are preserved in volume 1, of that now rare work, but no trace of the melody has been found in any of the old printed collections of Irish music.
Neither the above name nor its English equivalent, “My Fair-haired Darling,” appears in the index to Dr. Petrie’s Complete Collection of Irish Music, 1892-7; but No. 202, a nameless air obtained from Teige McMahon, of County Clare, and an air named “One Evening in June; or, Youth and Bloom,” contributed by Paddy Coneely, the Galway piper, particularly the latter, are variants of the melody which I learned from my father and printed in O’Neill’s Music of Ireland and O’Neill’s Irish Music for the Piano or Violin.
“Dobbin’s Flowery Vale,” in Dr. Joyce’s Ancient Irish Music, closely resembles our setting of the air. He speaks of it as one of the best known tunes all over Munster. Conceding that it was, who can explain why such a delightful melody has been overlooked so long, especially after Hardiman brought it into such prominence? Other songs sung to this air are “The Maid of Templenoe” and “The Charmer with the Fair Locks.”
That popular melody best known as “The Rose Tree” has many other titles. It is probable but not certain that its original name was “Moirin ni Chuileannain,” or “Little Mary Cullenan,” from a song written to the air by the Munster poet, John O’Tuomy, who died in 1775.
O’Keeffe introduced it in The Poor Soldier in 1783, with verses beginning “A Rose Tree in Full Bearing,” hence the name by which Moore inserted it in his Irish Melodies as the air to his verses beginning, “I’d Mourn the Hopes that Leave Me.” It was also called “The Rosetree of Paddy’s Land,” and in Oswald’s Caledonian Pocket Companion, printed in 1760, a version of it was called “The Gimlet.” As “The Irish Lilt,” Thompson included it in his Country Dances for 1764. In Aird’s Selection of Scotch, English, Irish and Foreign Airs, volume 1, published in1782, a setting of the air is called “The Dainty Besom Maker,” and in Gow’s Second Collection, published in1788, it is included under the name “Old Lee Rigg, or Rose Tree.” Mullhollan introduces it among his Irish Tunes in 1804 as “Killeavy,” and it is printed under that name also in Thompson’s Original Irish Airs, 1814-16.
Other names by which the air is known are “Maureen from Gibberland,” “Forgive the Muse that Slumbered,” and “Fare You Well, Killeavy.” A version of it in the Forde Collection, entitled “Captain MacGreal of Connemara,” is to be found as an unpublished air in Dr. Joyce’s Old Irish Folk Music and Songs, issued in 1909.
“The Green Woods of Truigha” is a melody of great antiquity, as is proved by its structure and by the fact of its being known by so many names in different parts of the country. Besides the above name, which it bears in Ulster, it is known in Leimster as “Ned of the Hill” (Eamonn an Cnuic); in Connacht as “Colonel O’Gara,” and in Munster as “Mor no Beag” (‘Big or Little”), with a variety of other aliases.
That delightfully poetic name, “Oh, Arranmore, Loved Arranmore,” in Moore’s Melodies, has come to be better known than “Kildroughalt Fair,” the air to which it is set and which was included in Holden’s Periodical Irish Melodies, printed from 1806 to 1808. It is also included under the latter name in Lynch’s Melodies of Ireland, published in 1845. Variants of this air were “Lough Sheeling,” “Old Truicha,” and “Thy Fair Bosom.”
Another setting of “Kildroughalt Fair” is “Bridget O’Neill,” one of the numbers in Bunting’s second collection, published in 1809. An older version of this air is printed under the name “My Lodging Is Uncertain,” in O’Farrell’s Pocket Companion for the Irish or Union Pipes, published in 1804.
One of Gerald Griffin’s poems, “The Wanderer’s Return,” commencing, “I’ve come unto my home again,” is set to the music of “Kildroughalt Fair” in Moffat’s Minstrelsy of Ireland.
A very popular old Irish marching tune was “Domhnall na Greine,” first printed in O’Farrell’s Pocket Companion for the Irish or Union Pipes, in which the name appeared as “Donald na Greana,” and twice elsewhere in the same collection, whether unconsciously or not, as “O, My Dear Judy” and “The Boney Hilander.”
The old Irish title means in English “Daniel of the Sun” or “Sunny Dan.” The origin of the name is thus explained by John 0’Daly, editor of The Poets and Poetry of Munster. Domhnall was a fellow who loitered his time idly basking in the sun, as his cognomen would indicate, and consequently he became a fitting subject for the poets to display their wit upon. O’Daly, who gives many specimens of this wit in Irish and English, prints one epic of thirteen verses in the original Irish, with a rhyming English translation describing Dhonal’s mock heroic accomplishments.
In Moore’s Melodies, “Thady you Gander” instead of “Domhnall na Greine” is given as the air to which the verses beginning “Oh, ‘tis sweet to think,” are sung; yet curiously enough no mention is made of the air by that name in any other publication except where Moore’s song is copied. We are indebted to Alfred Moffat for the information that said air is included in Holden’s Old Established Irish Tunes, produced in 1806, as “She Is the Girl That Can Do It.” That the tune was old and established is evidenced by the fact that it is known by so many names, such as “Bully for You,” “I Gave to My Nelly,” “Girls of the West,” “The Leg of a Duck,” “From the Court to the Cottage,” “You May Talk as You Please,” and “Bucky Highlander,” the latter being the Scotch name burlesqued by some Irish wag in verses often heard by the writer, commencing “Potatoes and butter would make a good supper for Bucky Highlander.”
Few tunes have enjoyed such wide circulation and universal popularity as “An Rogaire Dubh,” or “The Black Rogue,” a Munster jig formed on the air, “Brigid of the Fair Hair,” according to Dr. Petrie’s notation. A comparison of both tunes proves that they had a common origin at least.
It appears that the jig version of it penetrated in someway to Dumfries, in that part of Scotland visible from County Down, Ireland, on a clear day, and soon came to be known as “Johnny MacGill,” the name of the fiddler who gave it publicity, claiming it as his own composition. In course of time it came to be known as “Come Under My Plaidie,” the name of a popular song written by Hector Macneill to the catchy music. Under the latter name it is regarded as a Scotch tune and printed as such in several collections.
Its true origin is conceded, however, by R. A. Smith, who included the air “Johnny MacGill” as one of the numbers in The Irish Minstrel, published at Edinburgh in the year 1825.
Tom Moore also set his song, “Life Is All Checkered with Pleasures and Woes,” to the air of “The Bunch of Green Rushes,” the name by which the melody is known in Forde’s Encyclopedia of Melody, published in London early in the last century, and in several other collections.
Few if any tunes had more names, or songs sung to them, than this, among them being the following: “Michael Malloy,” “Tom Linton,” “The Little Bunch of Rushes,” “God Bless the Grey Mountain,” “The Bark Is on the Swelling Shore,” “Nature and Melody,” “The Humors of Donnybrook Fair,” “Inishowen,” “The Irish Lady,” “The Irish Lass,” “O, Pleasant Was the Moon,” “’Tis a Bit of a Thing,” and “What Sounds Can Compare?.”
In the present generation few realize that the waning favorite, “Kate Kearney,” once so popular as a waltz tune, was an ancient Irish melody long before Lady Morgan wrote the song of that name.
Edward Bunting printed it as “The Beardless Boy” in his General Collection of the Ancient Irish Music, 1796, and under the same name it is to be found in Crosby’s Irish Musical Repository, 1808.
In his second volume - A General Collection of the Ancient Music of Ireland, 1809 - Bunting again includes a practically identical setting of this air as “The Dissipated Youth,” the same title under which Haverty published it fifty years later in his Three Hundred Irish Airs.
The melody is called “Kate Martin” in Murphy’s Irish Airs and Jigs, printed in 1809.
As a waltz tune, “Kate Kearney” had but one drawback - it lacked a serviceable second part or strain. This, however, was supplied by some orchestra leader, but it was essentially German in composition, and devoid of any trace of Irish feeling. O’Farrell, a. celebrated Irish piper, who published in London six small volumes of music suitable for his instrument - 1797 to l810 - attempted two variations on “Kate Kearney” with indifferent success.
The old air known by the corrupt Irish title “Savourneen Deelish” has come to be called by a variety of other names, such as “The Molecatcher’s Daughter,” “Miss Molly, My Love, I’ll Go,” “The Exile of Erin,” “I Saw from the Beach,” “There Came to the Beach” and “Tis Gone, and Forever.” Moore’s song by the latter name was first printed in the sixth number of the Melodies in 1815.
In Shields’ opera, The Poor Soldier, 1783, “Farewell ye Groves” was sung to this air, which was also called “Erin go Braugh” in O’Farrell’s Irish Music for the Union Pipes. As “Savournah Deelish” it was known in Arnold’s opera, The Surrender of Calais, 1791. By that name also, according to Alfred Moffat, it was printed in Adam’s Musical Repository, 1799, Nathaniel Gow’s Collection, 1800, Holden’s Collection, 1806, and Murphy’s Collection in 1809, and even now in Moore’s Melodies.
An air in Dr. Petrie’s Complete Collection of Irish Music, of recent date, called Ta na la - in English, “It Is Day” - I find is a version of that spirited tune commonly called “Tow Row Row,” and also “Paddy, Will You Now?”
Under these names the tune has been printed in several collections. Variants of the strain as lullabies have been noted by Dr. Joyce. The chorus to the old song ran as follows:
“Tow, row, row! Paddy, will you now?
Take me now, while I’m in humor;
And that’s just - now!”
Who has not heard of “The Rakes of Mallow,” and the life they led, with their “Beauing, belleing, dancing, drinking,” according to the song?
The air was first printed in Burk Thumoth’s Twelve English and Twelve Irish Airs about 1745. As “The Rakes of London” it was included among Johnson’s Two Hundred Country Dances, published in 1751. In the Compleat Tutor for the Guitar, issued a few years later, the same publisher prints it as “The Rakes of Marlow.” Aird numbers the tune among his Selection of Scotch, English, Irish and Foreign Airs, - Glasgow, 1782 – under the name, “The Rakes of Mall.” Alfred Moffat tells us that Arnold made good use of the air in his opera, Auld Robin Gray, 1794.
Mallow, a thriving town in Cork, famous for its Spa, was much frequented by young gentlemen in the last century, who took the waters for their health.
One of the most popular Long Dance or Set Dance tunes, especially in Munster, is “The Humors of Bandon.” Our setting, as played by James O’Neill and Ed. Cronin, has sixteen bars in the second strain. Although not printed in any old Irish collection of music, it is an ancient tune, for a nice version of it named “The Humors of Listivain” was printed in Aird’s Selection of Scotch, English, Irish and Foreign Airs, Vol. 3, published in 1788, with ten bars in each strain. Neither title appears in the Petrie collections, but an indifferent version of the tune in regular measure, called “The Merry Old Woman,” and another version without a name and having only six bars in the second strain, are to be found in the first part of Petrie’s Complete Collection of Irish Music. A jig named “The Humors of Bandon” in Levey’s Dance Music of Ireland, London, 1858, differs but little, except in the key, from Petrie’s ”“Merry Old Woman.”
A friendly critic not long ago among other alleged discoveries informed us that a jig entitled “The Kinnegad Slashers” in O’Neill’s Music of Ireland, was “The Land of Sweet Erin,” and he was right. Yet so were we, for as “The Kinnegad Slashers” it was printed in O’Farrell’s Pocket Companion for the Irish or Union Pipes, Vol. 3, published in 1804, and in Powers’ Musical Cabinet, issued six years later.
Additional names by which this popular tune is known are “O! An Irishman’s Heart,” “O! Merry am I,” “Powers of Whiskey” and “Paddy Digging for Gold.” None of those names appears in the index to the Petrie Collections. The Scotch have annexed the tune also, among whom it is known as “The Bannocks o’ Barley Meal.”
That excellent Irish jig best known as “The Frost is All Over,” has a variety of other appellations, such as “The Praties are Dug,” “The Mist of Clonmel,” “On a Monday Morning” and “What Would You Do if You Married a Soldier?”
One setting of this tune as “The Frost Is All Over” obtained in the County Armagh and two other versions by different titles are printed in Dr. Petrie’s Complete Collection of Irish Music.
The fame of “Father O’Flynn,” Alfred Perceval Graves’ inimitable song, is world wide, and there is reason to believe that the spirited air, “The Top of Cork Road,” to which it is sung, contributed something to its popularity.
It was not by any means a rare tune in West Cork in my boyhood days, and the version of it remembered was printed in our publications. We are not aware that it is included in Dr. Petrie’s Complete Collection of Irish Music, but it was printed without comment in Dr. Joyce’s Ancient Irish Music in 1873.
The tune found its way into three English Collections of Country Dances, and one Country Dance Card between the years 1770 and 1781 as “The Yorkshire Lasses.” Alfred Moffat tells us that its first publication distinctly connected with Ireland was in Holden’s Masonic Songs, Dublin, 1798.
The second strain of “The Irish Lilt” in Vol. 1 of Aird’s Selection of Scotch, English, Irish and Foreign Airs, printed in 1782, and the second strain of “The Top of Cork Road” bear a very close resemblance. It’s being known as ”“The Irish Lilt” at such an early date disposes of any English claim to the tune.
Other names by which the air is known are “Trample Our Enemies,” “To Drink With the Devil” and “The Rollicking Irishman.”
Who has not heard of “Tatter Jack Walsh,” and who has not wondered as to the meaning of that peculiar title? Patient investigation disclosed the fact that the correct name in English is “Father Jack Walsh.” The title in connection with the tune, it appears, was originally written down “An t-athair Jack Walsh,” the first and second words being idiomatic Irish for Rev’d Father. In transcribing that name, some one, probably ignorant of the Irish language, corrupted “t-athair” into “Tatter,” hence the meaningless error which has been perpetuated to this day.
A ballad called “Kitty of Ballinamore,” has been sung to this air, and as a double jig it has also been printed under the name “To Cashel I’m Going.”
It is generally believed that “Billy O’Rourke is the Bouchal” was the original name of that popular tune to which is sung a modern favorite, “The Fair of Windgap” or Aonach Bearna Gaoithe (geeha). Such, however, is not the case, for we find the same tune in the Encyclopedia of Melody as “The Day I Married Susan,” while in The Hibernian Muse, published in 1787, it is printed under the name “Mrs. Casey,” from the opera of Fontainebleau.
It is one of the numbers in Lynch’s Melodies of Ireland, printed in 1845, under a slightly altered name – “Billy O’Rorke Is the Boughal” - and in Surenne’s Songs of Ireland, by the same name, a little improved in spelling.
In Stories of Tunes with a History, I alluded to “Jimmy O’Brien’s Jig,” so named for the piper from whose playing the writer memorized it. In The Bee, A Collection of Irish Airs, published early in the last century, and in Clinton’s Gems of Ireland, printed in 1841, a version of it is entitled “Copey’s Jig” and ascribed to “Piper” Jackson.
Probably the oldest version of it is found in Aird’s Selection of Scotch, English, Irish and Foreign Airs, published in the latter part of the eighteenth century, where it is named “Cassey’s Jig.”
Who has not heard of “Lannigan’s Ball,” a serio-comic song of great popularity fifty years ago. This sprightly air or jig tune is to be found in Aird’s Selection, etc., before mentioned under the name “Dribbles of Brandy.” In the same volume the Hop Jig, known to us as “Drops of Brandy,” is called “The Cudgell.”
From Thomas Broderick, a Galway man, my school director at Edina, Missouri, the writer picked up a reel called “My Love Is Fair and Handsome.” To some it is known as “Paddy McFadden,” under which title it is printed in an American publication. The discovery of a version of it in Aird’s Selection, etc., before quoted, as “John Roy Stewart,” was quite unexpected, as the easy flowing style of its rhythm would not indicate an origin dating back to the eighteenth century.
The old melody known as “The Rakes of Kildare” can boast of a respectable antiquity. A version of it printed in Aird’s Selection of Scotch, English, Irish and Foreign Airs, published 1782 to 1797, is simply called “A Jig.” Compared with “Get Up Early,” In Bunting’s Ancient-Music of Ireland, issued in 1840, they betray a common origin. Bunting obtained his tune, which is in reality a march, from a Mayo musician in 1802, and he notes that the author and date of composition were unknown. Tom Moore’s “Swift from the Covert” is sung to a version of “The Rakes of Kildare,” and an American piano pamphlet contained a variant of it which was named “The Barn-door Jig.”
“The Priest in His Boots,” or, as a translation from the Irish title would indicate, “The Priest and His Boots,” is one of the old-time Country Dances or Set Dances. A good version of it printed in the appendix to Moffat’s Minstrelsy of Ireland was copied from C. & L. Thompson’s Complete Collection of 120 Favorite Hornpipes, 1765-77. We find the tune also printed in Aird’s Selection, etc.,1786, as “The Parson in His Boots.”
In Crosby’s Irish Musical Repository, “The Priest in His Boots” is given as the air of a song entitled “Paddy’s Trip from Dublin,” a few pages further on it is again named as the air to “Murphy Delaney.” Both may have had a common origin, which time and taste have varied, yet “Murphy Delaney” as now known appears to have been derived from “A Jig to the Irish Cry,” one of Burk Thumoth’s Twelve Irish Airs, published in 1742.
“The Irish Washerwoman” shares with “Miss McLeod’s Reel” the reputation of being the most universally known dance tune wherever the English language is spoken. Its being named “Jackson’s, Delight” in Forde’s Encyclopedia of Melody clearly betrays its origin as one of Jackson’s jigs. In the same publication it also appears as “The Irishwoman,” which we hoped was its true name originally. Our confidence in that view has been rudely shaken, however, by finding what we believed to be the corrupted name - “The Irish Washerwoman” - in Aird’s Selection, etc., etc., 1782; McGoun’s Repository of Scots and Irish Airs, published circa 1800, and in Wilson’s Companion to the Ballroom, issued in 1816, and other old printed collections. In reviewing O’Neill’s Irish Music for the Piano and Violin in the Journal of the Irish Folk Song Society of London, Mrs. C. Milligan Fox, the honorable secretary, alludes to it as “The Washerwoman.”
Edward Cronin alone of our Chicago musicians remembered any strains like the reel called “Lough Allen” in the Petrie collection of The Ancient Music of Ireland, published in 1855. That circumstance entitles it to special mention, for the tune is printed in one form or another no less than six times, without names and by various names, in Petrie’s Complete Collection of Irish Music, recently published.
Concerning “Lough Allen,” in the volume published under Dr. Petrie’s personal supervision in 1855, he tells us that “It has been a very popular dance tune in County Leitrim, where it most probably had its origin.” An almost identical setting, No. 258, in the so-called “Complete Collection,” is without a name, and so is No. 154, a variant of it. No. 396, another version in the same volume, is entitled “The Mill Stream, a County of Cork Reel.”
Other versions or variants of this widely distributed reel are No. 888, called “Box About the Fireplace, A Munster Reel,” and No. 896, which is simply called “A Munster Reel.” When we come to consider No. 911, which bears the name “Lough Allen,” we find a reel in four sharps, which, if not a different tune, has scarcely any resemblance to the “Lough Allen” first named or its variants. Such confusion in a collection of Irish music - the work of one talented individual - is truly bewildering.
A reel once popular throughout the southwest of Ireland, at least, was known in West Cork in my boyhood days as “Rolling on the Ryegrass.”
Periodically, Mary Ward and her two daughters, who had been driven to mendicancy as a result of the famine, made our farmhouse their headquarters for a week or so at a time. They were always very welcome, for the old woman had all the news of the country to relate. In fact, it was through her and her like that news was disseminated in the absence of newspapers in those times. Besides, she could sing a good song, and lilt a good tune in spite of her blindness and poverty. That explains the source of the writer’s acquaintance with “Rolling on the Rye-grass” and many another tune either lost or forgotten in this generation. Other names by which this favorite tune was known are “Old Molly Ahern,” “The Piper’s Lass,” “The Rathkeale Hunt,” “Maureen Playboy” (Father Fielding gave me that as the Kilkenny name), and “The Shannon Breeze.” The latter name is also applied to another reel printed in our collections under the name “Winter Apples.”
As an instance of the fascination which certain tunes have for individuals, and even families, “Rolling on the Ryegrass” well serves our purpose. An American-born family of gigantic men and women named Sullivan manage an immense farm a dozen miles beyond the limits of the city of Chicago. They are all musical, and several of them can dance a jig or reel as cleverly as if they were born in Ireland. Of course, there is no scarcity of tunes in such a family, but no tune ever played warms the cockles of their hearts or gets their feet in motion quicker than the strains of “Rolling on the Ryegrass.” Both parents came from the Glens on the north shores of Bantry Bay, and it is a curious fact that their preferences, musical and mental, have suffered no diminution in transmission to their offspring, born and brought up in a cosmopolitan American community.
Were the writer to attempt to enter into the details of all his contributions of unpublished tunes to our collections, the reader would be justified in thinking that personality was being given entirely too much prominence; yet what is more natural than that personal reminiscences would constitute the greater part of a story of this nature?
One of the earliest recollections of my childhood days was a sprightly song called “Get Up, Old Woman, and Shake Yourself,” which my mother and sisters sang frequently. This air or jig tune was promptly dictated to our scribe. Another jig, named “Go to the Devil and Shake Yourself,” occasionally obtruded, and although by many confused as the same tune, they were in reality entirely different. Having inadvertently omitted the latter tune from O’Neill’s Music of Ireland, we were bound to insert it in The Dance Music of Ireland, and we did, with a vengeance. The music seemed strangely familiar, though, and for good reason, too, because “Go to the Devil and Shake Yourself” proved to be identical with “When You Are Sick Is It Tea You Want?” and also “The Penniless Traveler,” both jigs already printed under those names in our collections.
Few tunes can boast of such ancient popularity as “Go to the Devil and Shake Yourself.” In a volume comprising nine collections of Country Dances, published in London in 1798, this jig appears six times, while a different tune is printed under that name once. It is exceptional in having no variants, because it has been preserved in print for over a century, instead of being dependent on the uncertainty of tradition for perpetuation. But yet another complication arises, for under the above title my tune, “Get Up, Old Woman, and Shake Yourself” is to be found in Alday`s Pocket Volume of Airs, Duets, Songs and Marches, Dublin, 1800, and in Haverty’s Three Hundred Irish Airs, published in New York in 1858.
Another mystifying conflict of titles is found in the case of “Fisher's Hornpipe,” one of the numbers in Wilson’s Companion to the Ballroom. In a footnote the author says that the tune is also called “The Egg Hornpipe.” The tune appears in Alday’s Pocket Volume, etc., etc., under the title “Lord Howe’s Hornpipe.” In the second volume of the same work the tune is again presented as “Blanchard’s Hornpipe.” To add to the confusion, Forde in the Encyclopedia of Melody prints it as “The College Hornpipe,” while Dr. Joyce in his recent work calls it “The Blacksmith’s Hornpipe.”
Still people will wonder when they find a familiar tune with a strange name.
Examples of this character, exemplifying the almost endless diversity of names by which so many Irish airs, marches, dance tunes, etc., have been known and are still known, could be prolonged indefinitely, and our only reason for mentioning them in this connection at all is to convey to the reader some idea of the endless embarrassments to be met with in collecting and classifying Irish Folk Music.
In the conflict of titles, the multiplicity of names, and the diversity of settings, the avoidance of duplicates becomes a task of no little difficulty.
“Music, all powerful o’er the human mind,
Can still each mental storm, each tumult calm;
Soothe anxious care on sleepless couch reclined,
And e’en anger’s furious rage disarm.”