From the recording Wild And Wicked Youth
Mark Clavey: guitar
Mary Hanover: hammered dulcimer
Rachel Gaither: fiddle
This set gets its name from the first tune in the set, "The Butcher's Lament", an original tune Mark composed in the early 90s. As the story goes, Mark was working a long-term assignment for a downtown-KC firm, and had, for his supervisor, a younger man (as project-managers go) who was long on ambition and short on business acumen. This fellow had a penchant for bemoaning his fate as a misunderstood middle-manager to whatever friendly (accessible) ear he might find... and so it was, one particular morning, that Mark found himself in the office of our protagnist, listening to that day's grumblings. As the diatribe wore on, a melody came, unbidden, into Mark's head, unfolding in its entirety, and sadly underscoring the lament. Now this young man had a self-appointed nickname which was (you guessed it) "The Butcher"… and the tune, after Mark wrote it out, became titled "The Butcher's Lament". From there, we go into a funky 9/8 setting of the Irish reel "Tam Lin". Alternately known as "The Glasgow Reel" the tune is credited (by Steeleye Span and Ken Kolodner) to Davey Arthur. After two passes through the tune as a slip jig, we kick it into its traditional setting as a reel for one pass, and then jump into "Jenny's Chickens", a reel of debated origin. It is identified as an Irish reel while "Sleepy Maggie", its alter-ego, is described as "originally Scottish". The earliest appearance of the tune is from the "Duke of Perth/Drummond Castle Manuscript" compiled by David Young in 1734. It was popularized by the great Irish-American (County Sligo/New York) fiddler, Michael Coleman. The tune is usually played AABBCC, however we’ve chosen to include a lesser-known and played DD part, and to muddle things up beyond all belief, we play it at the beginning of the tune rather than at the end.