Ballydesmond Polka No.1

  1. Bernie Daniel
    Bernie Daniel
    Here is another maverick tune that I learned "on a lark" last night. It is an Irish tune named the Balleydesmond Polka No.1 (because it turns out there are three of them!) but I decided to play along with another YouTuber (legendofthelake) from the Netherlands who does a lot of Celtic music on her channel. Anyway here it is. Any others play it? What about No's. 2 & 3 as well?

    Barbara, if posting post tunes outside the "tune of the week" it making your life difficult please just say so.
  2. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    Oh, no, let's keep the 'other' tunes going! I just don't want to duplicate tunes... so if we already have a thread on one, I don't want to start another....

    I'll post my Ballydesmond Polka... we play something we call Ballydesmond Polka which I believe is all 3, in some sort of order!

  3. Susanne
    That was one of the first Irish tunes I learned to play whatsoever, and the only tune I can squeeze out of an English concertina! Right now I'm quite fed up with it but it is a nice tune! Regarding nr 2 and 3, I'm not sure which is 2 or 3, but I play one of the other two as well.
  4. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    Oh, the joys of Grandmotherhood!

    Here's Ballydesmond Polka as our band, the Flatland Ramblers play it. Well, kinda... I'm certain I got all mixed up and distracted and then lost, the last half of it!

  5. Bernie Daniel
    Bernie Daniel
    Great tunes Barbara -- that is a complex set of songs and you played well esp as you were so ably assisted by that cute little helper -- pretty smart of him to get himself into the video. Do they make 1/8 size mandolins? Of course may you could give him a mandolin tell him it is miniture mandocello !
  6. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    Bernie, thanks... He is a She..... give her another 18 months, she'll grow some hair! Actually, I have bought a little Kiddie Mo... a smaller Mid-Mo mandolin, hopefully, she'll want to learn to play it when she gets big enough!
  7. Eddie Sheehy
    Gotta Love Them Polkas...
  8. Susanne
    I'm having some video mass making today, so here's mine
    I'm not left-handed. It always appear like that when I use the built-in-the-screen camera, and I don't know how to flip it.

  9. Mike Romkey
    Mike Romkey
    Ballydesmond 1, 2 and 3 (once each). I enjoy playing this in sessions. It's easier on the fiddle, with a moving bow to support the hammer-ons.

  10. Joe Nobiling
    Joe Nobiling
    Nothing like a triple polka after a cup-a-jo in the morning, eh, Mike? Or was that a triple double-espresso?
  11. Jill McAuley
    Jill McAuley
    "Coffee Before Breakfast Polka Challenge" anyone?
  12. mikeyes
    I wish that the Irish polka gods would settle on which of the Ballydesmonds is which. Mike's version would have been 2,3, 1 in our session with the last one being the most difficult to play and the most interesting when played slowly.

    I looked at thesession and they are just as confused.

    The problem is that the area from which polkas and slides come from is very small and there are only so many towns for tunes to be named after. When you drive through that area of Kerry, Limerick and Cork you pass one tune after another in a very short period of time.
  13. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    Ok, here it is played along with The Flatland Ramblers CD

  14. Eddie Sheehy
    The Polkas and Slides are the "real" dance tunes. Usually backing the "set dances". Dancing "troupes" of men and women battle against rival villages for bragging rights. The dances are named after the villages - The Murroe Set, The Clarecastle Set, etc. The dancers do NOT wear costumes and everything is pretty much free-flowing with "whoops" and floor-stomping all part and parcel... Everytime I hear a polka I'm brought right into the middle of a "mighty session".

  15. Mike Romkey
    Mike Romkey
    I don't guarantee my 1, 2, 3 are in the right order, but I did learn them from some old Irish music book (not McNeil's). I love these tunes but something about them makes them challenging. I have a bad tendency, when playing them fast and after a couple of pints, to confuse the B parts in (what I'm calling) 2 and 3, or go from 3 back to 2 instead of repeating 3. (We typically do each of these three times, or until someone remembers the subsequent tune.) There's some leprechaun dust on these polkas. A thin line divides the Ballydesmonds from a Grateful Dead jam.
  16. mikeyes

    No one seems to know which of the Ballydesmonds is which. They just know that there are three of them and each of them has an alternative name just in case. I've asked this question of some well known Irish musicians and they have all admitted that there is a question over which is which.

    We usually play your #3 first, slowly, and then go to #1 and #2 at a faster pace. It is not an easy set to play on the banjo.
  17. Bernie Daniel
    Bernie Daniel
    susiakasinead, Mike and Barbara thanks a lot. I am inspired to learn all three now and I guess I will just have to remain as confused as everyone else about the numbering.

    Also, Eddie thanks for the neat dance scene -- my wife is first generation Irish and was raised in Detroit with 2 siblings, 3 half-sibs and 3 first cousins all happly living in the her dad's small house. Her dad was the family icon as he was an engineer for the Ford Motor Company! Those were the days.

    They had parties with dancing most weekends -- they just rolled the carpet back she recalls.

    Also she has alway mentioned how it used to be the pattern that men married late in Ireland -- sure looks the way from the dance partners -- cool video.
  18. Susanne
    Bernie, don't let my vid add to your confusion. The first one is the first Ballydesmond, but the other one is no Ballydesmond at all, but Campbell's farewell to Red Gap, that we play after it, just because it's nice
  19. Mike Romkey
    Mike Romkey
    Isn't Campbell's Farewell also Bonaparte's Retreat or something? Bluegrass is somewhat less confusing to me.
  20. Eddie Sheehy
    I learned Campbell's Farewell to Red Gap from a Norman Blake DVD....
  21. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    The band I play with, we play Red Haired Boy (Little Beggarman) & Campbell's Farewell to Red Gap , and call it our Red Set. For the life of me, though, now I've been away from Iowa, and our regular band practice... can't remember which order we play it! I THINK Farewell to Red Gap, then Red Haired Boy.... hopefully, it'll come back to me next time we play!
  22. Joe Nobiling
    Joe Nobiling
    Campbell's Farewell to Red Gap and Bonaparte's Retreat are two different tunes.
  23. Jim Baker
    Jim Baker
    X: 17
    T:The Ballydesmond Polkas No 1
    % Nottingham Music Database
    S:via PR
    "Am"E/2A/2 A/2B/2|c/2d/2 e|"G"G3/4F/4 G/2A/2|G/2E/2 E/2D/2|"Am"E/2A/2 A/2B/2|\
    "Am"c/2d/2 e3/4f/4|"G"g/2e/2 d/2B/2|"Am"A A::
    "Am"a3/4g/4 a/2b/2|"Am"a/2g/2 "D"e/2f/2|"G"g3/4f/4 g/2a/2|g/2e/2 e/2d/2|\
    "Am"e/2a/2 a/2b/2|"Am"a/2g/2 "D"e/2f/2|"G"g/2e/2 d/2B/2|"Am"A A:|
  24. Mike Romkey
    Mike Romkey
    Posted this here 11 years ago & had some discussion about it with the late Joe Nobling, RIP. Came here earlier in the week to remind myself how it goes, noticed the original video has disappeared, and decided to repost. This is a new Ellis "Tradition" A5 made using Loar-era techniques, including hide glue.

  25. Gelsenbury
    One moment, you were trying to remind yourself of how it goes. The next, you record the Ballydesmond polkas at high speed, in a perfect take. You're quite the accomplished musician! These are great tunes, and I can only play one of them. I must find the others.
  26. Robert Balch
    Robert Balch
    Great Polka and great playing!
  27. Frithjof
    Mike wish you as much fun as possible with your new Ellis (therefore we hopefully get the fun to listen to amazing recordings).
  28. Ginny Aitchison
    Ginny Aitchison
    Really enjoy your mandolin playing and for others if you don't know, the Bucktown Revue ( of Mike's) is very entertaining with a great set of musicians.
  29. Mike Romkey
    Mike Romkey
    Aw, y'all are too kind! This is such a fun group. Glad I'm "retired" now and can spend more time learning tunes. How about the guy who is recording 1,001 Irish tunes, one a day? Talk about placing the bar high!
  30. John Kelly
    John Kelly
    Fine playing once again, Mike. That Ellis certainly has a cutting tone, but then it is new, as you say. I look forward to hearing it over a period of time as it settles in and gets used to you and its new home.
  31. Simon DS
    Simon DS
    That is a beautiful mandolin Mike, and clean playing at a nice tempo.
    The guy you’re talking about has been at it for a number of years now, can’t remember his name but he got really interested in wanting to play very very clean and fast. And now he does. I wouldn’t be surprised if he knows a lot of the tunes already, now he can record say 20 tunes a day for the next two or three months... then have an automated publish program set up, then go on a two and a half year holiday!

    Maybe he didn’t post on SAW because he could never play extremely fast enough?
  32. Christian DP
    Christian DP
    Great playing and sound Mike!
  33. gortnamona
    fine playing Mike
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