We are happy to offer some special notes on all of the songs on the CD. Some of the text will be identical to that found on the CD, while there are special comments and further information added--some of which was not able to be printed due to size constraints. We hope you will enjoy this companion to your CD purchase. There are additional external links to other sites offering lyrics and guitar chords and tabulature for your convenience.
St. Anne's Reel is a French-Canadian fiddle tune that has been very popular over the years. Since we like to play fiddle tunes and ballads, this song, written by New Englander David Mallet, is a perfect fit. The band's skills are showcased as the fiddle tune is interwoven between the vocals, ending with an instrumental rendition of St. Anne's Reel, featuring Brian on lead and Henry playing twin fiddle harmonies.
This is one of my favorite tunes on the CD. I first heard it while working on a set for the Colorado Irish Festival with Heidi Montgomery.
After recording this song, I heard that it had been
done some years ago by John Denver. It has a
captivating feeling to it, with the fiddling and the
fanciful story. One connection to the song is that
Camilla McAleavey (former owner of the Sheabeen
Pub) hails from the Island.
This is one place you can hear Brian singing
harmony with Brian...wish I could do that on stage!
Ballad of St. Anne's Reel [David Mallett]
arr. by Brian Clancy and Henry the Fiddler
The Ballad of St. Anne's Reel
He was stranded in a tiny town on
Fair Prince Edward Island
Waiting for a ship to come and find him
A one horse place, a friendly face,
Some coffee and a tiny trace
Of fiddlin' in the distance far behind him.
A dime across the counter then,
Aa shy hello, a brand new friend
A walk along the street in the wintry weather
A yellow light, an open door, and a
"Welcome friend, there's room for more
And then they're standing there inside together.
He said, "I've heard that tune before somewhere
But I can't remember when,
Was it on some other friendly shore,
Ddid I hear it on the wind
Was it written on the sky above,
I think I heard it from someone I love
But I never heard a sound so sweet since then.
And now his feet begin to tap,
A little boy says, "I'll take your hat."
He's caught up in the magic of her smile
And leap the heart within him went,
As off across the floor he sent
His clumsy body, graceful as a child.
He said, "There's magic in the fiddler's arms
And there's magic in this town
There's magic in the dancers' feet
Aand the way they put them down
People smiling everywhere,
Boots and ribbons, locks of hair
Laughter, old blue suits and Easter gowns."
The sailor's gone, the room is bare,
Tthe old piano's setting there
Someone's hat's left hanging on the rack
The empty chair, the wooden floor that
Feels the touch of shoes no more
Awaitin' for the dancers to come back.
And the fiddle's in the closet of
Some daughter of the town
The strings are broke, the bow is gone
And the cover's buttoned down
But sometimes on December nights,
When the air is cold and the wind is right
A melody comes driftin' through the town.