From the recording Wild And Wicked Youth
Mark Clavey: guitar
Mary Hanover: hammered dulcimer
Rachel Gaither: fiddle
We call this set the "Wedding Jigs" because we regularly play the first three jigs for recessional music when we perform for weddings. "Calliope House" is a modern Scottish double jig written by Dave Richardson, the Northumberland-born mandolin/cittern/concertina prodigy from Boys of the Lough. The tune figures to be his most popular work, and its title honors Pittsburgh PA’s Calliope House, the home of piper and patron George Balderose. "The Connaughtman's Rambles" is a traditional Irish double jig and a fairly standard seisiún tune, and appears in no less than a dozen consequential collections of fiddle tunes. Connaught was one of Ireland’s five old provinces (along with Ulster, Leinster, Meath, and Munster), and derived its name from the Connachta (the large tribal dynasty that dominated the west and north of Ireland in the first few centuries AD). Brendan Breathnach notes, "The title appears in a list of tunes in his repertoire brought by Philip Goodman (the last professional and traditional piper in Farney, Louth) to the Feis Ceoil in Belfast in 1898." The "Jig of Slurs" is a Scottish jig composed by the incomparable Highland Pipe Major G.S. MacLennan, and has become a staple of many Scottish and Irish seisiúns. We play through it once in G- and C-major so we can get a small bump from it on the second pass when we jump to its customary keys of D- and G-major. The ending tune, "The Tenpenny Bit" is a traditional Irish double jig similar to "The Three Little Drummers", and turns up in the first volume of James Kerr's 1875 collection of popular Scottish tunes "Merry Melodies". In 1855, George Petrie identified the tune as "a jig from the county of Leitrim jig". And Francis O'Neill observed "Highland pipers seldom play any other Irish jig for dancers but this, and it is to be found in most of their books of bagpipe music".