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Road To Lisdoonvarna (Edor)

Banish Misfortune Album

Grey Larsen & Malcolm Dalglish, Banish-Misfortune (1977)

The slide “Road To Lisdoonvarna” was popularized on this side of the pond (the States) by Grey Larsen (b. 1955) & Malcolm Dalglish (b. 1952), on their album Banish Misfortune (1977). They played this tune in a set of four: “The Road to Lisdoonvarna/Trip to Sligo/Dennis Murphy’s Slide/O’Keefe’s Slide,” where the first and last tunes are very similar two-parters played in Edor — certainly in the same melodic family. Just to reduce confusion, note that though there is also a reel version of this tune called by the same name played in Edor and in Dmix,  there is also a “Lisdoonvarna Reel” which is a different tune altogether.

A slide as a tune-type, as opposed to playground equipment, is a member of the jig family.  If you want to know more about slides, visit the tune dictionary.

Now, on to more pertinent info.  While the main road to Lisdoonvarna is the N67, the R478 will take you there too, as will the Kelfenora Rd. to the R478.  So, perhaps this accounts for the different ways of playing the tune 😉  Anyway, the town Lisdoonvarna (Lios Dúin Bhearna in Irish, perhaps meaning “Ring-Fort Gap”), in Co. Clare, is an hour south of Galway on the N67, and dates only to the early nineteenth century.  It is associated with spas.  In particular, its waters are associated with the humours, and thought to have special healthful qualities — so expect a tune called “The Humours of Lisdoonvarna” some time soon. Also, each year around September Lisdoonvarna holds one of Europe’s largest matchmaking festivals, where the usual 823 area inhabitants host around 40,000 people from all over Europe in search of love and companionship — some just hoping to get the shift off some chung wan.  We might expect a hopeful tune very soon entitled “My Love is in Lisdoonvarna.”  For the lucky ones after the festival the tune will be “I Found My Love in Lisdoonvarna.”  There may be some connection here, of course, between the healthful waters and the matchmaking festival, but it is as yet undisclosed.

Perhaps of some interest to some KC locals I know, in early September they hold an annual Irish BBQ championship in Lisdoonvarna!  Here’s a brief on the area. There Lisdoon1981posterwas a late July music festival there as well, from 1977 to 1983.  Rory Gallagher (1948-1995), one of the great blues guitarists, played in the final, rather tragic festival. Tragic because during the festival a riot broke out and in the confusion a number of people were drowned.  This marked the end of the Lisdoonvarna Music Festival — for a brief pre-event synopsis read “Lisdoonvarna Music Festival 1983.” Christy Moore (b. 1948) has a song about the earlier happier times at that festival, really based on his own reminiscences of the place, by the name “Lisdoonvaran” — oooh Lisdoonvarna . . . Lisdoon, Lisdoon, Lisdoon, Lisdoonvarna.

For the ABC click Road to Lisdoonvarna

Alt Chords for Road To Lisdoonvarna:

/  Em     / (G)     / D     /         / Em     / (G)    / A     / Em     : |

Em     / D/G   / A     / G     / Em     / D/G    /A      /  Em   : |

Road To Lisdoonvarna, med-slow tempo (Eddie, Mandolin)

Road To Lisdoonvarna, med tempo (Eddie, Mandolin)

Road To Lisdoonvarna, the dots (with chords)

Road To Lisdoonvarna

Road To Lisdoonvarna, Slide in Edor


One Comment

  • Janmarie
    Posted May 29, 2014 at 5:29 am | Permalink

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