My Former Wife/Neary’s

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This track is from our 2006 CD, Concert Tour of North America 2006.

My Former Wife is included in O’Neill’s 1001 (No.110).Whereas O’Neill actually sourced the tune from the South Leitrim piper Sergeant James Early when he included it in his earlier publication, in 1903, O’Neill’s Music of Ireland Eighteen Hundred and Fifty Melodies the collector wrote that it was actually the Tullamore piper, Bernard Delaney, who had actually introduced this tune to the Chicago musicians. Delaney, whom O’Neill described as ‘capable of craning or playing the Connaught staccato system of execution, the free and rolling style with a liberal sprinkling of graces and trills was his favourite.’Like Sergeant Early and, indeed, so many of O’Neill’s musical associates, Delaney was an officer in the Chicago Police Force.The same Sergeant James Early was one of Chief O’Neill’s closest confidantes and indeed, along with Early’s musical duet partner Mayo fiddler,James McFadden,was a source of some of the collector’s finest tunes. ‘Neary’s’ jig is associated with the repertoire of Jim Neary, a Mayo fiddler who lived in Chicago. He was married to pianist Eleanor Kane.

The jig was recorded by fiddle and flute duet,Jimmy McGreevy and Seamus Cooley.This jig has its own particular character and having been played by the Brosna Céilí Band in the late 1990s, it has since enjoyed a revival.

5 December 2006
My Former Wife/Neary’s
Concert Tour of North America 2006
Performers/Subjects Instruments
Geraldine O’Callaghan Fiddle

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