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Christmas Eve (G)   

The reel “Christmas Eve” is a popular tune, and a mighty flute tune. Try to keep that swing going. Unfortunately, some sessions only bring the tune out in December.  At others, and locally, it’s played anytime, because it’s too good a tune to be played only one tommycoen1month out of the year!  It was composed by Urrachree, Aughrim, East County Galway fiddler Tommy Coen (1910-1974), and there are two stories about it (or one story from different perspectives).  The first is that Tommy didn’t have a name for it, and the name came about because it was broadcast on RTE (the Irish radio station) on a Christmas Eve program in 1955.  The second is that Tommy had moved to Salthill and taken a day job as a conductor for the Connemara buses, playing dances and sessions at night.  Apparently, Tommy was not on friendly terms with the leader of a local ceili band who had been invited to play for a mid-December radio show in Dublin.  The band leader didn’t mention that it was Tommy Coen’s tune, and instead just called it “Christmas Eve” because of the proximity of the holiday and because he thought it might irk Coen. While some people call it “Tommy Coen’s,” around here it’s always “Christmas Eve.”

For the ABC, click Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve, slow tempo

Christmas Eve, med tempo

Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve, KC Learning Sessions

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