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The Shadow

I wrote this tune in honour of The Shadow, Sean McLaughlin, from Armoy here, who was an All Ireland Champion Fiddler.

Here's a piece I posted about Sean, on my website:

John McLaughlin, or Sean as he preferred to be called in later life, was easily the most famous fiddler to come from North Antrim. He was from Armoy, and was known far and wide for his many recordings and even won the All-Ireland Senior Fiddle Competition in 1958. When he was nine he acquired his first violin and was soon in demand for playing at local Ceilidhs. He learned much of his early music from Ballymoney Fiddler James Kealy. During the 2nd World War Sean fought with the 1st Battallion of Royal Ulster Rifles. After the war he came home to Armoy but had to head to England again, looking for work. In 1957, back home, he won the All-Ireland Senior Fiddle competition, which was in Longford that year. His opponents that year were Sean Gallagher from Donegal and Sean O’Laughlin from Clare. He was last to play and after playing, was asked to stand at the back of the stage while the other two competitors were asked to play again. The audience assumed that Sean had been placed third and that the other two competitors were being asked to play again to decide first & second place, but in fact Sean McLaughlin was the Champion, much to the delight of the crowd. He was from Armoy and was a great friend of that other legendary Antrim fiddler Sean McGuire R. I. P. As well as being an excellent Fiddler he also composed a number of lovely tunes like McLaughlin’s Dream, Golden Shadows and McLaughlin’s Lament. He was a fine painter too and most local folk remember him by his nickname ~ The Shadow.

You can hear Sean's Fiddle playing on two tracks, on this CD: Seoltaí Séidte

Cheers, Dick


Armoy Round Tower with the hill of Knocklayd

Musicians: Dick Glasgow: Hammered Dulcimer { by Rick Thum }

Reel: The Shadow

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The Square Pint

A tune that I composed for my wee CD: From a Northern Shore

While busking for a year in Dublin, in the Merchants Arch by the Ha'penny Bridge & later playing the Irish Pubs of West Berlin, I often substituted a Pint of the dark liquid for a square meal.


Instrument: Dick Glasgow: Hammered Dulcimer { by Rick Thum }

Hornpipe: The Square Pint

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The Claymore

I composed this wee Jig about 10 years ago, for a CD project on Traditional Music from North Antrim.

CD: From a Northern Shore

MV Claymore, the more recent & short lived Ballycastle to Campbeltown Ferry, 1997 to 2000, was brilliant, while it lasted.


Dick Glasgow & students, on board the MV Claymore, heading over to perform at the Mull of Kintyre Music Festival, in Campbeltown.

"In May 1997 the MV Claymore was sold to Argyll and Antrim Steam Packet Company, a subsidiary of Sea Containers Scotland Ltd. For three years Claymore operated a new summer sailing from Campbeltown to Ballycastle, Northern Ireland, providing winter overhaul relief for CalMac under charter."


MV Claymore



Instruments: Dick Glasgow: Hammered Dulcimer ( by Rick Thum )

Jig: The Claymore

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The Hazel

I composed this wee Jig about 10 years ago, for a CD project on Traditional Music from North Antrim:

CD: From a Northern Shore

It's rather appropriate really, that I play this tune on the Hammered Dulcimer, given the subject matter & the likelihood that the first Hammered Dulcimers to reach North Antrim, probably came from the central West coast region of Scotland, by boat.

The SS Hazel, known locally as The Scotch Boat, sailed between Ardrossan & Portrush from 1907 to 1941 & used to stop near Ballycastle, for passengers to be rowed ashore.


SS Hazel

Instrument: Dick Glasgow: Hammered Dulcimer ( by Rick Thum )

Jig: The Hazel

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The Rights of Man

This track was recorded live at one of our Saturday night sessions in the Bushmills Inn, so please forgive all the chatter & background noise, which does of course add a little bit of reality to the overall sound.

The tune is The Rights of Man, which some folks attribute to James Hill, but although we do know that he did write some cracking Hornpipes for Fiddle, including The High Level Bridge, The Beeswing, The Hawk and The Omnibus, sadly there is no proof that he actually did wright ;-) this one.


Sabine & Dick Glasgow. In Frontiersman costume at the Ulster American Folk Park

Dick Glasgow: Oakwood Hammered Dulcimer in Pub Session, Bushmills.

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This is an interview I gave for Radio Ulster a couple of years ago, which was broadcast live from the Marine Hotel in Ballycastle, Co. Antrim.

It was yet another fine opportunity to promote the Hammered Dulcimer and as we were sitting looking out the window at Rathlin Sound, with Rathlin & the Argyll coast on the horizon, I played The Rights of Man & the Scott Skinner tune The Cameron Highlanders.

Cheers, Dick


Dick Glasgow: Rick Thum Hammered Dulcimer

Hornpipe: The Rights of Man Music

Reel: The Cameron Highlanders Music

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This is the tail end of the interview, where I played a Jig, Out on the Ocean, to end the show.

Cheers, Dick


Marine Hotel, Ballycastle, Co. Antrim

Dick Glasgow: Rick Thum Hammered Dulcimer

Jig: Out on the Ocean Music

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This is a set of Scottish Tunes, a March, Strathspey & two 6/8s, that I put together a few years ago which, to my ears at least, sound rather good on the Hammered Dulcimer .... what do you think?

Cheers, Dick


Dick Glasgow: Rick Thum Hammered Dulcimer

The Peat Fire Flame Music

Braes of Tulliemet Music

Scarce o' Tatties Music

Drummond Castle Music

See the last 3 being played on video HERE

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Two tunes I'm very fond of playing.

Captain O'Kane has a strong Co. Antrim connection. It is thought to have been composed by blind Irish harper Turlough O'Carolan (1670 - 1738) for his friend Captain O’Kane (or O’Cahan), a sporting Irishman of a distinguished County Antrim family well-known in his day as Slasher O’Kane.

The Halting March is also known as The Pikeman's March & I learned it from the 2nd LP by the Boys of the Lough, back in 1973 .... I know, imagine learning a tune from an LP! ... Och, I've no shame!


Dick Glasgow: Rick Thum Hammered Dulcimer

Dick Glasgow: Captain O'Kane: Video

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Carolan: Captain O'Kane Music

March: The Halting March Music

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This is Co Antrim Hammered Dulcimer player Barry Carroll, playing as a guest in the Saturday night concert of my Causeway Dulcimer Festival in Bushmills, Co. Antrim, back in 2005.

"The Verdant Braes of Screen is a traditional Irish song.

It is believed that the Screen refers to Ballinascreen in County Londonderry, Northern Ireland.

A "brae" is a steeped bank or a hillside."


Cheers, Dick


Barry Carroll: Hammered Dulcimer

Air: The Verdant Braes of Screen Lyrics

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