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Origins: Danny Boy (tune)

DigiTrad:
DANNY BOY
DANNY BOY (2)
DANNY BOY, REST IN PIECES
LONDON DERRIERE
LONDONDERRY AIR


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cyclefem@yahoo.com 19 Dec 98 - 11:05 PM
George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca 20 Dec 98 - 05:51 AM
20 Dec 98 - 10:41 PM
George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca 21 Dec 98 - 06:58 AM
Bruce O. 21 Dec 98 - 01:37 PM
Brack& 23 Dec 98 - 04:20 AM
Gearoid 30 Dec 98 - 04:57 AM
Ev 30 Dec 98 - 10:11 PM
Bruce O. 07 Apr 99 - 02:21 PM
Frank Howe 07 Apr 99 - 03:10 PM
Bruce O. 07 Apr 99 - 04:07 PM
GUEST,Lighter 15 Jul 11 - 10:27 PM
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Subject: DANNY BOY -
From: cyclefem@yahoo.com
Date: 19 Dec 98 - 11:05 PM

Does anybody know the origins of the Irish folk song Danny Boy. I know the lyrics but I am unsure if they are relating to love, war. Any opinions would greatly be appreciated.


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Subject: RE: DANNY BOY -
From: George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca
Date: 20 Dec 98 - 05:51 AM

I believe it's been discussed here previously, but I would suggest you check this web-site:

http://www.standingstones.com/dannyboy.html

That should give you all you need.


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Subject: RE: DANNY BOY -
From:
Date: 20 Dec 98 - 10:41 PM

When the band I'm in does this song we introduce it as a father's farewell to a son who is off to war. Our front man say's " An old woman wrote the words to a tune she heard a blind fiddler playing in the street." I imagine thats partly true. The kings service was usually for a long time so the boys father, if old or infirm, could welll be dead by the time his son returns. Thats all I have for you i'm afraid. There are probably other more definitive words among the listers.

Don Meixner


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Subject: RE: DANNY BOY -
From: George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca
Date: 21 Dec 98 - 06:58 AM

Sorry, but it was a song written originally for a failed English stage show, but re-fitted to an old Irish? tune known as the Londonderry Air.


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Subject: RE: DANNY BOY -
From: Bruce O.
Date: 21 Dec 98 - 01:37 PM

That wasn't 'the Londonderry air' is was an air from Londonderry, collected by Jane Ross of New Town, Limavady about 1853, and sent to George Petrie, who published it in 1855. An ABC of the tune from Petrie's collection is on my website, along with some earlier versions (The Young Man's Dream). Be sure to read that reference at www.standingstones.com. There is a tradition that it was collected from a blind fiddler named James McCurry, of Myroe, Limavady. [Sam Henry's Songs of the people, p. 286]

Fred E. Weatherly's song "Danny Boy" is said to have been written in 1913.


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Subject: RE: DANNY BOY -
From: Brack&
Date: 23 Dec 98 - 04:20 AM

An Englishman from Somerset, Frederic Weatherly, wrote the words Danny Boy in 1910. The air was sent to him by his sister in America. He also wrote many others, about 1,500 songs, including The Roses Of Picardy. Graves wrote two sets of lyrics to the air, Emer's Farewell and Erin's Apple Blossom. Katherine Tynan also wrote a set as did many others. I know I've got a few different sets of lyrics to it, but don't ask me to find them!

Regards Mick Bracken


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Subject: RE: DANNY BOY -
From: Gearoid
Date: 30 Dec 98 - 04:57 AM

When I played the Derry Air as a young lad (it was always described as the most perfect melody ever written ?????????)

I agree

Gearoid


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Subject: RE: DANNY BOY -
From: Ev
Date: 30 Dec 98 - 10:11 PM

Our local public television station did a marvelous program about Londonderry Air/Danny Boy. Could not get the song out of my head for about two weeks! You might want to check there and see if your local station has it.

I think it was just called "Danny Boy".


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Subject: RE: DANNY BOY -
From: Bruce O.
Date: 07 Apr 99 - 02:21 PM

[Here is G. Petrie's headnote to the tune called "Londonderry Air" in 'The Ancient Music of Ireland', p. 57, 1855.]

Name unknown.

For the following beautiful air I have to express my very grateful acknowledgement to Miss J[ane], Ross of N.-T.-Limavady, in the county of Londerrry--a lady who has made a large collection of the popular unpublished melodies of that county, which she has very kindly placed at my disposal, and which has added very considerably to the stock of tunes which I had previously acquired from that still very Irish county. I say still very Irish; for though it has been planted for more than two centuries by English and Scottish settlers, the old Irish race still forms the great majority of its peasant inhabitants; and there are few, if any, counties in which, with less foreign admixture, the ancient melodies of the county have been so extensively preserved. The name of the tune unfortunately was not ascertained by Miss Ross, who sent it to me with the simple remark that it was "very old," in the correctness of which statement I have no hesitation in expressing my perfect concurrence.
[tune follows to end of page.] ..........................................

The tune, melody line only (without the base and ornaments), is given as an ABC, T012 in file T1.HTM on my website.


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Subject: RE: DANNY BOY -
From: Frank Howe
Date: 07 Apr 99 - 03:10 PM

There's another discussion of Danny Boy in progress now. Search a littel further down on the thread list. It is clearly a farewell (parent to son). We usually introduce it as a famine/emmigration farewell. The son going off to find a life outside of Ireland knowing that if ever he returns (over 90% did not) he will likely find his loved ones (mother or father) have passed. For whatever reasons the parting, Danny Boy is the Irish Lament which encapsulates generations upon generations of parting and longing for home.


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Subject: RE: DANNY BOY -
From: Bruce O.
Date: 07 Apr 99 - 04:07 PM

I know, but the other thread is a recent one devoted entirely to lyrics, and this older one also concerns the tune.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Danny Boy (tune)
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 15 Jul 11 - 10:27 PM

The site linked by George Seto in 1998 offers both a printed melody and a Midi of "The Young Man's Dream," the supposed forerunner of "Londonderry Air."

If you listen to the Midi, there is hardly any resemblance. But if you play the notes with "Danny Boy" in mind (disregard the bar lines and emphasize ad lib), the resemblance becomes startling.

The "Londonderry Air" seems so far superior to "The Young Man's Dream" as printed that it makes me wonder whether Bunting or his printer simply misplaced the bar lines.

Does this seem plausible to anyone else?


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