World Fiddle Day 2021. Pádraig O’Keeffe Resources at ITMA

To mark World Fiddle Day 2021 ITMA is delighted to make available 591 new interactive scores and contemporary transcriptions of tunes originating from Pádaig O’Keeffe manuscripts donated to ITMA by Caoimhín Mac Aoidh. This will bring the total number of O’Keeffe interactive scores on the ITMA website to 870 tunes. Discover all the Pádraig O’Keeffe resources on the ITMA website below.

Pádraig O’Keeffe (1887–1963)

The famous Sliabh Luachra fiddle player and travelling fiddle-master Pádraig O’Keeffe (1887–1963) from Glountane, near Castleisland, Co Kerry, at first followed in his father’s footsteps as the principal teacher in the local national school, but in 1920 abandoned conventional school-teaching for a more bohemian lifestyle.

He had inherited music from his O’Callaghan mother’s side of the family, and over the next four decades he taught hundreds of pupils, fiddle especially but also accordion and other instruments, moving in a wide circuit within striking distance of his home. An eccentric and notably witty character with a gift for musical variation, he left an indelible stamp on the music and folklore of the region, and is an example of how an individual musician may almost create a local music style.

In his teacher-training, O’Keeffe would have learned the rudiments of staff notation and tonic solfa, but for his own teaching purposes he devised more intuitive tablature systems. For the fiddle he employed the four spaces of the music staff to correspond with the strings of the instrument, and with numerals indicating which fingers were to be pressed down. For the accordion he used numerals for the keys to be pressed and in- and out-symbols to indicate the direction of the bellows. Hundreds of the notations he left with pupils have been preserved in private hands, and two volumes of facsimiles have been published (Dan Herlihy, Sliabh Luachra Music Masters vols 1 & 2, Herlihy, Killarney, 2003 & 2007). [from Nicholas Carolan, ‘Fiddle & Accordion Manuscripts of Pádraig O’Keeffe, 1940s–1960s,’ ITMA Website, 2013].

Caoimhín Mac Aoidh Collection

In September 2015 fiddle player and author Caoimhín Mac Aoidh donated a collection of copies of Pádraig O’Keeffe manuscripts to ITMA. The manuscripts were sourced mainly from O’Keeffe’s pupils and in a limited number of cases from others. By the mid-1980s Mac Aoidh had amassed a significant collection which were given freely to him and once photocopied the original manuscripts were returned to their owners. Read Caoimhín's blog about the collection here.

To mark World Fiddle Day 2021 ITMA is making available more than 570 interactive scores and contemporary transcriptions of tunes from the Mac Aoidh Collection. The manuscripts which are included in the first tranche of material from this collection are as follows:

The Pat O'Connell Collection, 1930s–1960s

The Kitty O'Connor (née Horan) Collection (comprising five manuscripts), 1930s:

1. O'Connor Manuscript A, 2. O'Connor Manuscript B, 3. O'Connor Manuscript C, 4. O'Connor Manuscript D, 5. O'Connor Manuscript E

The Jerry McCarthy Manuscripts, 1940s

The Nicky McAuliffe Manuscripts, 1950s

MacAoidh-Miscellaneous Manuscripts, 1940s–1950s

Please see links to these collections below.

A further two manuscripts from Mac Aoidh's collection will be made available in the coming months.

The Paud Collins Collection

In 2013 ITMA made available a set of four facsimile manuscripts and 279 interactive music scores notated from Pádraig O’Keeffe manuscripts donated to ITMA by Paud Collins from Knockacur, Knocknagoshel, Co Kerry. The manuscripts belonged to Paud’s brother Jerh a former fiddle pupil of O’Keeffe’s. Their brother Dan was an accordion pupil of O’Keeffe’s. The fiddle manuscripts are in Pádraig O’Keeffe’s own hand, while the accordion manuscripts were copied for her brothers from O’Keeffe’s originals by Paud Collins’s sister Tess Drudy (who did not herself read the tablature).

Pádraig O’Keeffe Manuscripts. Book One. Fiddle (interactive scores)

Pádraig O’Keeffe Manuscripts. Book Two. Fiddle (interactive scores)

Pádraig O’Keeffe Manuscript. Book Three. Accordion (interactive scores)

Pádraig O’Keeffe Manuscripts. Miscellaneous pages. Fiddle (interactive scores)

Andrea Palandri

To mark World Fiddle Day 2021 ITMA invited fiddle player Andrea Palandri to chose his favourite tunes from the Pádraig O’Keeffe manuscripts at the Irish Traditional Music Archive. Learn to play the 21 tunes selected by Andrea here.

Contents

The Pádraig O’Keeffe Mac Aoidh-O’Connell Manuscript
Notated Collection

210 interactive music scores notated from a set of manuscripts originally written by Pádraig O’Keeffe for his pupil Pat O’Connell a small farmer from the townland of Cordal, Co. Kerry.

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The Pádraig O’Keeffe Mac Aoidh-O’Connor Manuscript A
Notated Collection

40 interactive music scores notated from one of five sets of manuscripts originally written by Pádraig O’Keeffe for his pupil Kitty O’Connor (née Horan) of Knockhorrin, Scartaglin, Co. Kerry.

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The Pádraig O’Keeffe Mac Aoidh-O’Connor Manuscript B
Notated Collection

25 interactive music scores notated from one of five sets of manuscripts originally written by Pádraig O’Keeffe for his pupil Kitty O’Connor (née Horan) of Knockhorrin, Scartaglin, Co. Kerry.

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The Pádraig O’Keeffe Mac Aoidh-O’Connor Manuscript C
Notated Collection

38 interactive music scores notated from one of five sets of manuscripts originally written by Pádraig O’Keeffe for his pupil Kitty O’Connor (née Horan) of Knockhorrin, Scartaglin, Co. Kerry.

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The Pádraig O’Keeffe Mac Aoidh-O’Connor Manuscript D
Notated Collection

35 interactive music scores notated from one of five sets of manuscripts originally written by Pádraig O’Keeffe for his pupil Kitty O’Connor (née Horan) of Knockhorrin, Scartaglin, Co. Kerry.

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The Pádraig O’Keeffe Mac Aoidh-O’Connor Manuscript E
Notated Collection

123 interactive music scores notated from one of five sets of manuscripts originally written by Pádraig O’Keeffe for his pupil Kitty O’Connor (née Horan) of Knockhorrin, Scartaglin, Co. Kerry.

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The Pádraig O’Keeffe Mac Aoidh-McCarthy Manuscript
Notated Collection

The 14 interactive music scores on this page have been notated from a set of manuscripts originally written by Pádraig O’Keeffe for his pupil Jerry McCarthy.

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The Pádraig O’Keeffe Mac Aoidh-McAuliffe MS
Notated Collection

37 interactive music scores notated from fair copy transcriptions made of Pádraig O’Keeffe’s music tablature by Caoimhín Mac Aoidh. The McAuliffe Collection was sourced from Nicky McAuliffe by Máire O'Keeffe who passed them Mac Aoidh. 

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The Pádraig O’Keeffe Mac Aoidh-Miscellaneous Manuscripts
Notated Collection

69 interactive music scores notated from 16 different miscellaneous Pádraig O’Keeffe manuscripts which were given to Caoimhín Mac Aoidh by various people over a number of years.

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Fiddle & Accordion Manuscripts of Pádraig O’Keeffe, 1940s–1960s
Printed Collection

Read about and view the Pádraig O’Keeffe fiddle and accordion manuscripts which were kindly donated to ITMA by accordion player Paud Collins from Knockacur, Knocknagoshel, Co Kerry. 

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ITMA Pádraig O’Keeffe Manuscript. Book One. Fiddle
Notated Collection

77 interactive music scores notated from one of three sets of manuscripts written by Pádraig O'Keeffe for fiddle pupils, and donated to ITMA by Paud Collins from Knockacur, Knocknagoshel, Co Kerry. 

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ITMA Pádraig O’Keeffe Manuscript. Book Two. Fiddle
Notated Collection

63 interactive music scores notated from the second of three sets of manuscripts written by Pádraig O'Keeffe for fiddle pupils, and donated to ITMA by Paud Collins from Knockacur, Knocknagoshel, Co Kerry.

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ITMA Pádraig O’Keeffe Manuscript. Book Three. Accordion
Notated Collection

88 interactive scores transcribed by ITMA staff from a copy-manuscript made of music written for an accordion pupil by Pádraig O’Keeffe in his own unique accordion notation and donated to ITMA by Paud Collins from Knockacur, Knocknagoshel, Co Kerry.

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ITMA Pádraig O’Keeffe Manuscripts. Miscellaneous pages. Fiddle
Notated Collection

51 interactive music scores notated from one of three sets of manuscripts written by Pádraig O'Keeffe for fiddle pupils, and donated to ITMA by Paud Collins from Knockacur, Knocknagoshel, Co Kerry.

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The Caoimhín Mac Aoidh Pádraig O’Keeffe Project
Blog

Read Caoimhín Mac Aoidh's blog outlining the origins of his Pádraig O'Keeffe collection and his long-held desire to make the collection available to the Irish traditional music community.

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Andrea Palandri play tunes from the the Pádraig O’Keeffe Manuscripts
Blog

Learn to play a selection of 21 tunes chosen by fiddle player Andrea Palandri for World Fiddle Day 2021 from the Pádraig O’Keeffe manuscripts at the Irish Traditional Music Archive. 

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Andrea Palandri plays tunes from the Pádraig O’Keeffe Manuscripts
Playlist

Listen to Andrea Palandri play for sets of tunes chosen from the Pádraig O’Keeffe manuscripts for World Fiddle Day 2021.

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