Traditional Irish Music


The folk music of Ireland (also known as Irish traditional music, Irish trad, etc.) is the generic term for music that has been created in various genres in Ireland. .

For more information download A History of Irish Music by William H. Grattan Flood (1905). Online book. Also you can check http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Traditional_Irish_Music

CCÉ Music Archive: The Comhaltas Traditional Music Archive comprises the recordings, documents and images collected by Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann during our 50 years of promoting Irish music and culture. You can either browse the archive as a guest, or you can create an account (at no cost).

Irish Traditional Music Archive – Taisce Cheol Dúchais Éireann: The Irish Traditional Music Archive is a national reference archive and resource centre for the traditional song, instrumental music and dance of Ireland. It is a public not-for-profit facility that is open, free of charge, to anyone with an interest in the contemporary and historical art forms of Irish traditional music. The Archive promotes public education in Irish traditional music through its own activities and through partnerships with others.

Traditional Irish Music - Learning Resources Centre: This site has been created to provide a source of learning materials for those wishing to extend their knowledge of Irish traditional music. The materials are free.

Ceolas: Some tunes use an ABC player to utilize them, go to Henrik Norbeck's ABC Pages to download his shareware program abcmus 1.1.

Vashon Celtic Tunes: (Mostly) Irish dance tunes with sheet music, midis, and chords.

Music Instructors 

The following musicians, all respected for their knowledge and musicianship in Irish traditional music on their respective instruments, are available for lessons (according to their availability.

Ross Davison: uilleann pipes, tin whistle, beginner flute

Tim Robinson: uilleann pipes

For an additional list of Irish traditional music instructors, please check Irish Music Ottawa http://www.irishmusicottawa.ca/music-resources.html

Regular fees range from about $30 to $40 per hour, but this is not ‘set in stone’ and OIA makes no guarantees on rates.

Ottawa Irish Arts instrument Loans

The Ottawa Irish Arts owns a collection of musical instruments common in Irish traditional music. These instruments represent a substantial investment and commitment by OIA to maintain the musical heritage of Ireland. By loaning these instruments, beginning students are spared the initial cost while they find their way and determine whether learning the instrument is for them or not. The loan of the instrument is for the sole purpose of learning the instrument for playing Irish traditional music, at the beginner level.

The collection, and current status, of the instruments is:

  • Two full sized harps;
  • Two Stentor student 3/4-size fiddles. One 3/4 fiddle currently available
  • One adult Stentor fiddle (AVAILABLE);
  • Irish wooden flute (AVAILABLE)
  • Single-row button Hohner accordion (AVAILABLE); and 
  • Half-set of David Daye uilleann pipes.

In order to assure instrument loans in the long term, a levy is now collected for each instrument loan. Collected levies are put aside and allocated to maintenance and eventual replacement of each instrument. Each levy represents a small percentage of the instrument cost, or of an instrument rental cost.

  • Harp $200 / year 
  • Fiddle $30 / year 
  • Flute $40 /year 
  • Accordion $50 / year 
  • Uilleann pipes  $150 / year

Beginner students can petition the Branch to borrow an instrument (MUST be a OIA branch member). If the student is eligible and the instrument is available the student will receive the instrument on loan. Each loan is subject to written terms and conditions set by the Branch. 

It is expected that the student will make an honest effort to gain sufficient proficiency and passion for the instrument and the music, and eventually acquire their own instrument. The loaned instrument is then returned to OIA for loan to another beginner.

While some of the instruments are already spoken for, the uptake of instruments to interested beginners has been disappointingly low. Normally the availability of these instruments is announced at the monthly ceilis, and in the OIA branch newsletter. OIA is eager to loan one of the instruments to persons who indicate a serious intention to make that initial effort to learn their chosen instrument. If you are such a person, or know of such a person, please contact the please contact the Chair for details.