Popular Irish Sheet Music, 1900s

Irish popular song and music of many kinds (including national music and traditional music) has been published in sheet-music form in Ireland since the 18th century.

Mainly publication has been in English, but since the early 20th century also in Irish. The lines between Irish popular and traditional song and music are hard to define, and the genres have significant resemblances. Often sheet-music material that is created by known poets and composers for commercial, literary, or other cultural purposes, enters oral tradition and comes to be considered as of anonymous origin.

The Irish Traditional Music Archive accordingly collects Irish popular sheet music as representing a dimension of Irish traditional music. It presents here a selection of these sheets.

With thanks to sheet-music donors Phil Callery, Adrian Gebruers, Bríd Hetherington, Nellie Walsh, and Waltons Ltd.

ITMA would welcome the donation of other materials of this kind which are not yet in its collections (check our catalogues here), or of their loan for copying.

NC, 1 October 2008