The College Groves/Down the Broom

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

The ‘College Groves’ was one of many tunes popularised by the South-Sligo fiddler, James Morrison, who was a contemporary of Michael Colman. No.485 in O’Neill’s 1001, where it titled the College Grove, O’Neill obtained the tune from John Ennis,a piper and flute-player originally from County Kildare – and yet another musical ‘patrolman’in the Chicago police force.Some of the other tunes that were notated by James O’Neill (Francis O’Neill’s scribe) from Ennis were the reels ‘Trim the Velvet’‘Toss the Feathers’‘The Dogs among the Bushes’, ‘The Reel of Bogie’ and hornpipes ‘The Kildare Fancy’ and ‘The Wicklow Hornpipe’all tunes that are highly regarded. O’Neill had also obtained a two- part version of the College Grove from James Kennedy,originally from Leitrim who had learnt the tune from his father a fiddler, Peter Kennedy from Ballinamore. O’Neill later observed that ‘The College Grove’ may have originated in the Scottish tune ‘Miss Corbett’s Reel’.The tune offers great scope for exploration and attention to detail is regarded as one of the finest in Irish music.It is particularly associated with the music of the great West Clare fiddler Bobby Casey.

‘Down the Broom’ is the first reel in the well known South Sligo selection (Down The Broom/The Gatehouse Maid) referred to in Track 10 above. This particular setting of ‘Down the Broom’is most associated with the music of the famous Castle Céilí Band.

5 December 2006
The College Groves/Down the Broom
Concert Tour of North America 2006
Performers/Subjects Instruments
Eimear Buckley Concertina

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