Clychau Aberdyfi /The Bells of Aberdovey
This tune comes from the 1893 Collection of Welsh Song 'Cambrian Minstrelsie' collected and arranged by John Parry and David Rowlands. I've written a second part which is full of the sound of pealing bells. You might want to play... Read more
Abergenny ( Abergavenny)
This short tune which should be played very slowly, whilst keeping the two in a bar feel, comes from The Playford Dancing Master 3rd edition, of 1657. It is interesting also in being in Aeolian minor mode. I hope you... Read more
This is in fact a hymn tune by the Welsh composer Joseph Parry, and the hymn, 'Jesus, lover of my soul' can be sung to this. It has entered the folk canon however, as have several other tunes which are... Read more
Achill Air
This is a beautiful and evocative Irish air from the windswept Achill Island just off the west coast of Ireland. Both parts should be played slowly and freely, with plenty of ornamentation. Read more
A short jaunty polka in D major. Read more
Jig Esgob Bangor (Bishop of Bangor's Jig)
A jig in E minor. A very charmingly named tune which makes me think of a grand clergyman having a quiet jig in between services in the cathedral. As with all these arrangements, its often nice to play the tune... Read more
Bodmin Riding
A bright G major 4 time tune from Cornwall. This needs to be played quite fast. I've kept the second part quite straight but together the two lines will sound quite lively and be quite busy enough to keep your... Read more
Cader Idris
Cader Idris
A Waltz in D major. This is a lovely lilting way to get up the Mountain of Cader Idris. I've put a pause at the end of the 3rd phrase, just to enjoy that F# minor chord, but you can... Read more
Castell Caerleon /Caerleon Castle
This is an interesting tune in Aminor which lends itself to some quite colourful harmonies. The counter melody I've written has a slightly Klezmer feel to it! Read more
Castell Caernarfon (Caernarfon Castle)
A short jig in G. I've made it a bit more minor than usual and added a fairly jaunty second part. This tune would work well in a set of jigs. Read more
Jig Arglwydd Caernarfon
A jig in name but not in form. This is quite a steady 2 time tune in G major. Read more
Llongau Caernarfon (Ships at Caernarfon)
This is a song tune, the words are by J. Glyn Davies and speak of a young persons wish to sail off to sea and adventure whilst watching the ships anchored at Caernarfon Harbour. The tune is in fact Norwegian,... Read more
Ymdaith Caerfilli (Caerphilly March)
This is a March. I've written 2 accompaniment parts. The first works with the chords given and is a nice simple line. The second is a chromatic and colourful line that will not work with either the simple accompaniment or... Read more
Deildy Aberteifi (Cardigan's Leafy Bower)
An upbeat jig in D major. Keep it steady to make it swing. I'm sure there are many leafy bowers ( or leaf houses, in literal translation) in Ceredigion that could claim to be the inspiration for this little tune. Read more
Carmarthen Hornpipe
A great tune from Carmarthen, a proper dotted or swung hornpipe in D. Read more
Cefn Coed
Polca Cefn Coed
I wasn't sure where to put this on the map as there is of course another Cefn Coed in the Valleys in south wales, and it is possibly more likely this tune originated from that area, but I wanted to... Read more
Mympwy Corris
This hornpipe tune has two different accompaniment parts, the first is pretty simple and would work with the tune played at a good clip and maybe swung. The second has lots of notes, so the tune player will need to... Read more
County Down
The Star of the County Down
The first of the tunes from Ireland to go up on the site; this is the beautiful and well-known song 'The Star of the County Down'. Here is both the tune on its own for melody instrument such as fiddle... Read more
Difyrrwch Gwyr Llangrallo (The Delights of the Men of Coychurch)
A Jig in G often used to accompany dancing. It fits very well with the Welsh folk dance 'Cylch y Cymry' (The Welsh Council). On its own its not a great melody, so I've given it a contrasting second part... Read more
Cwm Rhondda
Cwm Rhondda
Rhondda based organist John Hughes wrote a first version of this tune, called simply Rhondda, for the Pontypridd Eisteddfod of 1904. He then developed it into its present form for the inauguration of the church organ at Capel Rhondda, Hopkinstown... Read more
Gorymdaith Gwŷr Cyfarthfa /March of the Men of Cyfarthfa
This is a jig in D major. The tune reminded me of church bells pealing, so I've tried to bring out this sound in the second part as well. Read more
Dorset Four-Hand Reel
An English tune, four square in style and dance, and in four parts and four four time as well. I've added some syncopated rhythms to the second part here which can be played in quite a punchy style, and the... Read more
Dovey Valley
Difyrrwch Gwyr Dyfi (Delights of the Men of the Dovey Valley)
A jig in E minor. It may in fact have been written by a composer called Thomas D'Urfey and thus have nothing to do with the Dovey or Dyfi valley, but its worth including as its such a gem to... Read more
Eriskay Love Lilt
Here is the most Northerly tune so far, the charming 'Eriskay Love Lilt' from the Hebrides. The verse and chorus of this tune are the same, so the melody itself is only 8 bars long. I've arranged it to run... Read more
Morys Morgannwg (Glamorgan Morris)
A 4 time tune which would have been used for Morris dancing or processing. Have a listen to it performed by Llantwit Major tune club in November 2017 as part of a one day Tunelines workshop, as well as by... Read more
A jaunty bright little jig, one to dance to for sure. In G major here. Read more
Gwenynen Gwent (Busy Bee of Gwent)
This tune is named after Lady Augusta Hall, otherwise known as Lady Llanofer ( 1802-1896) who was a very influential patron of Welsh folk customs and arguably did much to shape our current understanding of them. Her nickname was 'the... Read more
Gwŷr Harlech /Men of Harlech
One of the most famous Welsh March tunes, this is used as a military music, and as a song with both Welsh and English words. Many versions exist of it in different arrangements, and differing instrumentation. in this version, I've... Read more
Keverne Feast
A jaunty upbeat Cornish tune from near Helston. In D major and 4 time. The two parts need to fit together quite neatly especially on the dotted rhythms for this to have the required bounce and spring in its step! Read more
The Leeds Polka
A great 3 part Polka. Its in D but starts and ends in G, and has a mixolydian mode feel throughout. You could try bringing in the second part only on the repeats and the two musicians could also swop... Read more
Liskeard Fair /Fer Lyskerys
A tune from Cornwall. This is one of the older known Cornish tunes, and was collected by Baring-Gould from the playing of Nichol May in 1981. It can be used as a dance tune, for a quadrille type dance, in... Read more
Bwlch Llanberis (Llanberis Pass)
A most beautiful if strenuous walk in Snowdonia is celebrated in a graceful waltz. Here in D major. Read more
Dinefwr Castle
This AABA air is written by John Parry, the blind harpist and organist also known as Bardd Alaw. I've added a counter melody. For fun, you could try playing the tune and then the counter melody alternately with a harmony... Read more
This beautiful tune is used for the Welsh song 'Yn Iach i ti Cymru.' It is also used as a hymn tune. Read more
This is a 4 time reel which is associated with the Llanofer estate in Monmouthshire, near Abergavenny, home of Lady Augusta Hall, ( see also Gwenyn Gwent) whose enthusiasm for Welsh culture saw her employing servants who could play the... Read more
Abaty Llantoni (Llanthony Abbey)
A brisk dance in 4/4 and G major. Llanthony Abbey (or Priory) has been mostly ruins for centuries. I imagined the sound of ghostly bells as rung by monks in the 13th century when I was writing the second part... Read more
Ffoles Llantrisant
This short waltz tune is a good one for beginner musicians as it uses only 5 notes, and they are the first 5 notes of a major scale. Here in D major. I've kept the accompaniment simple so as not... Read more
A great 4 part tune. It is also interesting to play this tune in the minor ( in this version make all the B and Es flat to move into G minor. It then sounds like a Klezmer tune! Read more
Market Rasen
Market Rasen Feast Quickstep
A two time quick step from Lincolnshire. I've given it a simple and perky accompaniment because it is a simple and perky tune, and impossible to play without smiling :) Read more
Meillionen o Feirionydd (The Clover of Meirionydd)
This is a beautiful and very stately dance tune, play it slowly, with a measured four in the bar feel. Its unusual in having a 6 bar B part to a 4 bar A part, and no repetition in the... Read more
Mwynen Meirionydd / The pleasing melody of Meirionydd
This is indeed a 'pleasing melody' with a lot of lyrical charm. Here in C minor. It is featured in Cambrian Minstrelsie volume 5 as the setting for the lyrics of Atgofion ( Memories) by Professor Rowlands, who also known... Read more
Ymdaith Meirionydd /Meirionydd March
This is a great though seldom played March tune which is in the Cambrian Minstrelsie collection (volume 5). It is there used as the melody for a song about Owain Glyndwr "Cadlef Glyndwr" ( Glyndwr's Warcry), words by Professor Rowlands... Read more
Milford Haven
This is a jig. Its usually in the major mode, and here it appears first in C major, but I've also given it a treatment in the relative minor of A minor. This arrangement works if you play it Major,... Read more
Llancesau Trefaldwyn (The girls of Montgomery)
A great AABA structure jig, which swings along well at quite a steady pace as well as a faster one. Here in D major. Read more
Dawns Flodau Nantgarw (Nantgarw Flower dance)
This tune is famously used for the Christmas Carol 'Deck the Halls with Bough of Holly' as well as the Welsh Midwinter song 'Nos Galan' ( New Years Eve). The Welsh words were written by poet Ceiriog Hughes. The tune... Read more
Newlyn, Cornwall
Newlyn Reel
A minor reel from Cornwall. This needs to go along quite fast ( NB suggested metronome speed of 150). You could feel it in 2 rather than four. The second part is thus quite busy and should stay rhythmic and... Read more
Neyland Ferry
This is a cheerful jig in D major. It was used ( along with 'You're Welcome to Waterford) as part of an inter-regional project linking West Wales and South East Ireland in 2010. The resulting piece of orchestral music 'Crossing... Read more
Y Ferch o Blwy Penderyn (The Girl from Penderyn Parish)
This is a Waltz in G. It is also a much recorded love song sung by a love struck young man dreaming of beautiful round -cheeked Gwen, but dying for love and planning to be buried under the yew. In... Read more
Ym Mhontypridd mae'r Mwriad (In Pontypridd is my Intended)
A beautiful and slow song melody. A very short tune, only 10 bars long, but needs plenty of space as you play it. In E Dorian mode. Performed here by Llantwit Major tuneclub as an ensemble and with Abi Hammett... Read more
Port Eynon
Mwmpwy Portheinon
A great and rhythmically driven duple time tune in G major. Don't play it too fast, it needs to chug along. Read more
Rheged is not in fact in Wales, but I've placed its centre in Cumbria, where there is now a heritage centre of the same name. It was one of the kingdoms of the Hen Ogledd (Old North). It was a... Read more
Morfa Rhuddlan /Rhuddlan Marsh
A much arranged and fine old tune, here in G minor, and one to really enjoy. The second part is quite wide ranging here and modulates briefly in and out of several keys. Read more
Castell Rhuthyn /Rhuthyn Castle
This is another tune from the Cambrian Minstrelsie. It is there used as the melody for the song 'Marwolaeth Mari' ( The Death of Mary). Rhuthyn does appear as a historical spelling of Ruthin where there is a castle so... Read more
Y Ferch o'r Sker /The Maid of Sker.
This air comes from the Cambrian Minstrelsie, a 'National Collection of Welsh Songs' from 1893 collected and arranged by Joseph Parry and David Rowlands. The words set to it tell of the anguish of a jilted lover. The name Sker... Read more
Sligo Air
This is another slowly and freely played air this time from the West coast of Ireland. One of my favourite places; the beautiful town of Sligo. Make sure to take time to breathe between the phrases, so the music shapes... Read more
Marchogion Eryri/ The Knights of Snowdon
A jig, but not one to run at, rather like Snowdon itself. Its usually in the major, but I've thrown the A part into a minor mode. Here we have it in F# minor, and the second part again contains... Read more
Moel yr Wyddfa (On Snowdon's Bald Summit)
A 4 time tune that should have a bit of a 2 in a bar feel to keep it light on its feet. I've added more dotted rhythms as this is the dominant rhythmical feature of this tune which is... Read more
St Kilda
St Kilda Wedding
St Kilda is a small archipelago off the Western coast of Scotland, part of the Outer Hebrides.To find the dot look into the ocean to the left of Stornaway. The largest island is Hirta. The population has never been more... Read more
Sullane River
The Banks of Sullane
The Banks of Sullane is a song about love found and lost. The lyrics are below. It should be played quite slowly, in a relaxed way, and take a breath at the end of each phrase. The river Sullane flows... Read more
Coleg y Brifysgol Abertawe (Swansea University)
This tune was written by Pat Shaw ( bardic name Padrig Farfog) for the Eisteddfod when it came to Swansea in 1923. its a 4/4 tune in D minor. One of the best! 3 recordings for this. Tune only and... Read more
The Brecon Beacons
Deryn Bwn o'r Banna (The Bittern from the Beacons)
This very short tune includes the sound of the bittern booming and can be sung as a children's song. It is usually harmonised in a major key, but I've flipped it into the relative minor to give more of the... Read more
Ar Ben Waun Tredegar (On Top of the Slope of Tredegar)
This short tune, named after the town famous for its iron works and stately house, has lyrics thus: Ar ben waun Tredegar mae eirin a chnau. Ar ben waun Tredegar mae 'falau ym mis Mai Ar ben waun Tredegar mae... Read more
Walts Trefforest (Treforest Waltz)
A lovely 3 part waltz, which is great to dance to. There are various ways to harmonise it of course, but I enjoyed this way with quite a lot of minor chords in. Read more
Tŷ Coch
Hen Tŷ Coch
This is clearly a variant of the tune Tŷ Coch, and apart from a few small variations, is the minor version of that tune. Its title suggests this is in fact is the older and original tune, though it may... Read more
Tŷ Coch
This tune first appeared in Playford's collection of dance tunes 'Playford's Dancing Master', in 1695, simply called 'the Red House' and is also associated with a pub called The Red House in Cardiff. There is an area of Cardiff with... Read more
Vale of Neath
Vale of Neath Hornpipe /Pibdawns Glyn Nedd
A jaunty dotted hornpipe from an area rich in toponymic tunes. I've added a very simple second part which brings out the harmony, and could be played on a fiddle or flute but would also great on a lower pitched... Read more
You're Welcome to Waterford
This lovely minor jig was a tune I used for a chamber orchestra suite 'Crossing the Water'. Written in 2008, it was part of a project to connect South East Ireland with West Wales, and also featured the tune 'Neyland... Read more
�Pibdawns Gwyr Grecsam (Men of Wrexham's Hornpipe)
This hornpipe really needs a lot of swing to work..imagine each set of quavers as triplets and the first quaver is worth 2 triplets, so each beat divides into 2 thirds, and 1 third. Furthermore you can even slide some... Read more