Reel, A Mixolydian, traditional Irish
Also know as: Duffy the Dancer
The High Reel lives up to its title, sounding a high and clear fanfare as it starts. Pitched up at A, it’s a great tune for letting the open fiddle strings ring.
- Audio – Blue Deux: The High Reel/The Congress Reel – from the album Blue Deux (California)
- Video – Anthea Lawrence (Fiddlehead): Julia Delaney/The Convenience/The High Reel – from the album Fiddlehead (Olympia, Washington, USA). (The High Reel starts at time 2:52 in this recording.) Also available as audio track.
- Video – The Dubliners (Featuring Barney McKenna): The Scholar / The Teetotaller / The High Reel – played on tenor banjo. From the album 50 Years. (The High Reel starts at time 2:21 in this recording.
As always for traditional tunes, the musical notation and chords do not indicate the “right” way to play the tune, but are a useful reference.
Play from the Dots
Examples of sets that include this tune.
- Dunmore Lasses Reel Set: Dunmore Lasses (Em) / The Earl’s Chair (D) / The High Reel (A Mixolydian)
- Julia Delaney / The Convenience/The High Reel
- The Mooncoin Reel / The High Reel
- The Scholar / The Teetotaller / The High Reel
- The High Reel / The Congress Reel
References and Resources
For those who want to dig deeper, here are some other resources.
- More Recordings
- Book – The Portland Collection, Volume 1 – Contra Dance Music in the Pacific Northwest. By Susan Songer with Clyde Curley.
- Book – John Weed and Stuart Mason: Slow & Easy Volumes 1 and 2
- Book & Audio – Dave Mallinson: 100 Essential Irish Session Tunes
- Book – Francis O’Neill and James O’Neill: The Dance Music of Ireland (tune 721, Duffy the Dancer)
- Lesson – Duncan Cameron Music: High Reel – fiddle demonstration of the tune played slowly
- Additional Resources
- Article – Jonathan Lay (TrailJams): Dorian, Mixolydian, Oh My: Modes in a Nutshell
- Webpage – The Session: The High Reel – crowdsourced sheet music, comments, and other information