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Planxty?

dulcimer 05 Sep 98 - 08:33 PM
Bruce O. 05 Sep 98 - 08:56 PM
O'Boyle 05 Sep 98 - 10:24 PM
Barry Finn 05 Sep 98 - 10:38 PM
Bruce O. 05 Sep 98 - 11:56 PM
Barbara 06 Sep 98 - 12:51 AM
murray@mpce.mq.edu.au 06 Sep 98 - 02:43 AM
Alan of Australia 06 Sep 98 - 05:48 AM
alison 06 Sep 98 - 07:17 AM
Big Mick 06 Sep 98 - 01:49 PM
Helen 06 Sep 98 - 07:24 PM
AndreasW 07 Sep 98 - 02:58 AM
AndreasW 07 Sep 98 - 02:59 AM
Jerry Friedman 09 Sep 98 - 05:04 PM
Helen 09 Sep 98 - 10:33 PM
Margo 28 Apr 01 - 04:19 PM
Bernard 28 Apr 01 - 06:44 PM
ollaimh 28 Apr 01 - 09:36 PM
Skipjack K8 29 Apr 01 - 04:52 AM
Noreen 29 Apr 01 - 08:01 AM
Bernard 29 Apr 01 - 12:25 PM
GUEST,joe 30 Apr 01 - 08:11 PM
GUEST,d miller 01 May 01 - 07:41 PM
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Subject: Planxty?
From: dulcimer
Date: 05 Sep 98 - 08:33 PM

I know the term is often used in O'Carolan tunes, but I have heard it used as a kind of Irish music--just as jigs, reel, aire, etc.are used. What is a planxty?


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: Bruce O.
Date: 05 Sep 98 - 08:56 PM

My understanding is that it was not a Gaelic word, and not found before its appearance in titles to O'Carolan tunes, but was attached to some of the tunes that O'Carolan composed in honour of friends and patrons. There are very few tunes called planxtys that aren't by O'Carolan. By a hasty scan through D. O'Sullivan's 'O'Carolan' it appears that all the planxtys are 6/8 time, but they are a lot of others commemorating friends and patrons that aren't called planxtys that are also in 6/8 time.


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: O'Boyle
Date: 05 Sep 98 - 10:24 PM

To expand on Bruce O.'s answer.... Planxtys can be in any time signature, but usually fall into 6/8 and are therfore played as jigs. They are a song composed for and dedicated to patron. They were usually composed on the harp, which may explain the loose time signaure. O'Carolan was a blind Irish harper in the early 18th century who composed many planxtys.

Slainte

Rick


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: Barry Finn
Date: 05 Sep 98 - 10:38 PM

O'Carolan composed only one song/tune in the traditional style, "Bridget Cruise" after his first love, his other estimated 200 pieces were in what became his style, Planxty. He was the first of the great harpers (& last of the great Bards) to write in this non traditional way. Some of his tune/songs are known by names & Planxties, an example "O'Rouke's Noble Feast" is also "Planxty O'Rourke". He was besides the greatest of harpers, also a singer & many of his tunes were written with accompanying words. Recently (maybe the past ten years) Seamus Connelly has been recording, he is probably the worlds best Irish fiddler interprerting O'Carolan's music today, to hear him play a piece by O'Carolan is magical & mystical, every thing gets silent, great musicians put down their instruments, eyes start to flutter & close as a dreamy sound starts to take you back in time to place long ago so pleasant that you could get lost in the sound & listen forever. Barry


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: Bruce O.
Date: 05 Sep 98 - 11:56 PM

O'Sullivan's 'O'Carolan' gives two Planxty O'Rouke tunes, (#144, 145) but neither is O'Rourke's Feast (#199) [Plea Rarkeh na Rourkough in the Neals' collection of c 1724].

Carolan was born in 1670, caught smallpox which blinded him at 18, and he died in 1738. It's a little hard to know what to call planxtys. In the Lees' edition of about 80 tunes, c 1780, only 3 are called planxties, but O'Neill in Music of Ireland calls almost all of O'Carolan's tunes planxtys.


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: Barbara
Date: 06 Sep 98 - 12:51 AM

I've read of O'Carolan, and I don't know how accurate it is, that he traveled south and spent some time in the Italian court and people like Scarlatti influenced his composition style afterwards. If true, is it possible that 'planxty' is a permutation of another language, and could mean anything from 'song' or '"slow tune' to 'Kerchel # in honor of ...'?
Blessings,
Barbara


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: murray@mpce.mq.edu.au
Date: 06 Sep 98 - 02:43 AM

I have thought the same thing Barbara--or that it is a modification of a Latin word; but I haven't come up with a likely candidate.


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: Alan of Australia
Date: 06 Sep 98 - 05:48 AM

G'day,
From the sleeve notes of a CD Carolan's Harp by The Harp Consort, which by coincidence I just happen to be listening to (designed to appeal to classical music lovers):-

The title planxty may perhaps have been invented by Carolan: certainly it is chiefly associated with his music. It is applied to animated pieces in jig rhythm and in a popular style....

I've heard elsewhere that when he applied the name to a piece such as "Planxty Irwin" that he was implying that Colonel John Irwin was a pretty good bloke (or maybe just paid his way for a while!)

O'Carolan is said to have been a blind Irish harpist, but I've also heard it said that he was only blind and ha'pist on Saturday nights. Irish all the time...

Sorry (maybe),
Alan


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: alison
Date: 06 Sep 98 - 07:17 AM

hi,

as far as I'm aware. O'Carolan travelled about the country and in return for lodgings and food he entertained his hosts, often writing Planxties (is that the plural?) in their honour.

slainte

alison


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: Big Mick
Date: 06 Sep 98 - 01:49 PM

My understanding of the word is that it is a corruption of the Irish Gaelic word "slainte" which means "to your health". A planxty then is a tune to the health of the person that O'Carolan wrote the tune for. He was the last of the great Bardic harpers. As was the custom, he would travel from home to home, and the resident would have to put him up. If he felt the hospitality was suitable, or some event occurred that he enjoyed, he would write a "planxty" to that person. My two favorites are Planxty Irwin (I love playing this on my 60's vintage Guild 12 string) and Planxty Mary O'Neill.

My source for this is a performer from Ulster who passed it on to me. Best I can do.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: Helen
Date: 06 Sep 98 - 07:24 PM

Mick, I heard this idea as a possible explanation on a record of some really fantastic Irish musicians whose name escapes me at the moment. I'll hunt it out and tell you when I find it. The man introducing one of the Planxty tunes said that it may be a corruption of the word "slainte" which I think he said means "to your health" and that if the harper started singing a song to the health of the host then the obvious next thing to happen would be that the harper would be given another drink. A little cynical, perhaps, but who knows ...?

Helen


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: AndreasW
Date: 07 Sep 98 - 02:58 AM

That's what Hypertext Webster (http://work.ucsd.edu:5141/cgi-bin/http_webster) says:

Planxty \Planx"ty\, n. [Cf. L. plangere to mourn aloud.] (Mus.) An Irish or Welsh melody for the harp, sometimes of a mournful character.

So it seems Barbara and Murray are right, as the L stands for Latin.
Andreas


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: AndreasW
Date: 07 Sep 98 - 02:59 AM

That's what Hypertext Webster (http://work.ucsd.edu:5141/cgi-bin/http_webster) says:

Planxty \Planx"ty\, n. [Cf. L. plangere to mourn aloud.] (Mus.) An Irish or Welsh melody for the harp, sometimes of a mournful character.

So it seems Barbara and Murray are right, as the L stands for Latin.
Andreas


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: Jerry Friedman
Date: 09 Sep 98 - 05:04 PM

Not necessarily. They only said "Cf.", meaning "compare". The Shorter OED says "origin unknown" and "Anglo-Irish". The definition is "A lively tune in triplets for harp, fiddle, etc., slower than a jig; a dance to this." So the differences are that the good folks at Oxford think planxties are lively, not mournful, and they don't mention any Welsh connection. Are there Welsh planxties? Are there mournful ones?


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: Helen
Date: 09 Sep 98 - 10:33 PM

Jerry,

I was thinking along (sort-of) similar lines that planxties tend not to be mournful since they are tributes to hosts or patrons and it would be unlikely that these people would be happy having mournful songs sung to them in their honour.

Also, the Irish band I referred to earlier is O'Riada.

Helen


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: Margo
Date: 28 Apr 01 - 04:19 PM

I'm learning Planxty George Brabazon so this thread is fascinating to me. Just a thought - If the end of the word "Planxty" is pronounced like the letter "t" couldn't it be like "ti" in Italian, meaning you. That might fit in with the Italian/Latin thoery: thank YOU George....

About Colonel John Irwin, I heard that O'Carolan was being approached by a couple of robbers, and that Irwin happened to be there and stopped them, hence the writing of Planxty Irwin. Got that story from my guitar teacher, but don't know his source for it.

Margo


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: Bernard
Date: 28 Apr 01 - 06:44 PM

Mmmm...

I, to, understood that a 'Planxty' was written as a 'thank you' dedication.

Certainly they are wide and varied in style...


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: ollaimh
Date: 28 Apr 01 - 09:36 PM

my gaelic is poor but i always thought planxty means gift.

that's scotts gaelic , some times irish is a little different.


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: Skipjack K8
Date: 29 Apr 01 - 04:52 AM

I heard on the wireless that Brian Keenan was working on a biography of 'the Blind Piper', just in passing. That was some time ago, so it may well have been published, or a different blind piper.

Skipjack


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: Noreen
Date: 29 Apr 01 - 08:01 AM

Yes, it was Tulough O'Carolan, Skip: Brian Keenan: Turlough though it was a harp he played! I didn't realise why the book was written, though- interesting.

Noreen


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: Bernard
Date: 29 Apr 01 - 12:25 PM

Deja vu?


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: GUEST,joe
Date: 30 Apr 01 - 08:11 PM

how 'bout, since the harp is a 'plunked' instrument, & planxties are most often 6/8, i'm hearing 'PLUNK-si-ty' as as sort of a harp-salute with a hint of 'anxt'.


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Subject: RE: Planxty?
From: GUEST,d miller
Date: 01 May 01 - 07:41 PM

wow! yes, i think that's it. Or maybe "...plunx 't; 'e planx 't; 'e..." &c.


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