A Question

Filed under: music @ 23:33

For any out there with a Celtic connection, or with some knowledge of music and history, what does Waltzing Matilda have to do with traditional celtic music?

Dad has a CD titled “Celtic Carols”. One of the titularly referenced carols is, indeed, Waltzing Matilda. And, as a side note, there’s the Pogues.

Is it a celtic tune better known to Americans by it’s Australian lyrics?

Or is the CD produced by a bunch of crackheads?


    xaosseed 12.26.2004 @ 07:18

    I’m no trad expert, but Waltzing Matilda has always been associated with Australia to the best of my knowledge. Maybe the link is that a lot of the convicts packed off to Oz were Irish and Scots?


    Dixie 12.27.2004 @ 13:35

    The poet’s fiancee was a Riley and the lady who wrote the music was a MacPherson, so the xaosseed isn’t far off. However, according to a web site turned up by a random Google, the tune was a pre-existing folk song, that Ms. MacPherson heard the tune being played by a band one day, and that the origin of the tune was probably either “Thou Bonnie Wood of Craigielea,” a song that in turn may have vague and fuzzy roots in other folk songs.

    In any case, the song as it exists now is about as Aussie as it gets, and whoever compiled your dad’s CD was probably confusing “Celtic” with “former English colonies.”

    MDA 01.02.2005 @ 10:58

    Hm. Well it wasn’t a compilation. It was a couple of honest to God Irish people: one on violin one on uilleann pipes. Perhaps the instruments were enough in their minds to make it Celtic.

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