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Manx Customs and Traditions - Bollan Bane: A traditional Manx tune

Published on 29 Jun 2017

A traditional tune from the Isle of Man: Bollan Bane.

The title refers to the plant worn to ward off evil spirits in the Isle of Man for Tynwald Day on the 5th of July.

It relates to a traditional Manx folktale: a person is lost on the mountains and hears a tune played by Themselves (the fairies).

It is the best tune they have ever heard and so they try to learn it, but each time they leave to get home, the tune is forgotten, and so they cannot but return to listen to the tune again.

Versions of the tale (and different tunes by the same title) exist in many manuscripts and publications across the 19th and early 20th centuries.

The tune played here appears in the Clague Collection and the Moore Collection of Manx traditional music. It was first published in 'Manx Ballads and Music' by A. W. Moore in 1896.

This performance is by Phil Gawne and Annie Kissack, who perform in a number of Manx groups, including Caarjyn Cooidjagh.

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