The Humours of Tulla

Reel, D, Traditional Irish
Also know as The Tulla Reel

The Humours of Tulla. Traditional Irish Reel. TrailJams Tune of the Week. Play it together June 26, 2022.

The Humours of Tulla is a very simple tune, but its simplicity invites you to be inventive with variations as you play it. For example, and inspiration, listen to the variations that Martin Hayes (fiddle) and Enda Scahill (tenor banjo) put into the tune. The town of Tulla, which gives this tune its name, is in County Clare, Ireland.

For tin whistle players, Grey Larsen suggests playing this tune on a low A whistle rather than a high D whistle. (See his book, Grey Larsen: 150 Gems of Irish Music for Tin Whistle.)


Dots (Music Notation)

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. This simplified version of the tune leaves out the triplets and other ornamentation that are typically played in the tune.

Sheet music for The Humours of Tulla (The Tulla Reel). Key of D major. Chords for The Humours of Tulla. Traditional Irish. Arrangement by Jonathan Lay 4/4/2022; revised 6/17/2022.
Play from the Dots
Slow tempo 65bpm
Moderate tempo 85bpm


Examples of sets that include this tune.

  • Tulla Reel Set: Rolling in the Ryegrass / Humors of Tulla
  • The Humours of Tulla / Last Night’s Fun
  • The Mason’s Apron / The Humours of Tulla / The Reconciliation Reel
  • Sally Gardens / Drowsy Maggie / Humours of Tulla (The Tulla Reel )

References and Resources

For those who want to dig deeper, here are some other resources.