Road to Monalea, Tom Ward's Downfall, John Naughton's by Thierry Masure published on 2013/01/04 22:57:52 +0000 Monalea is a village in Co. Offaly. The tune was composed by Colm O'Connell, the Sligo flute player, singer and lilter. I heard it being played by Dermot Byrne and Floriane Blancke just this week, early 2013. And if my memory is right, Josephine Marsh plays it as well. Tom Ward's Downfall was a tune already popular in the 19th Century and collected by Francis O'Neill. It refers to the execution by guillotine of Irish mercenary Thomas Ward, who served as a Brigadier-General in the Revolutionary French Army of the North in the late 18th Century. He unfortunately became one of the many victims of the blind terror under Robespierre, just 4 days before it came to an end. More info : http://www.irishmeninparis.org/soldiers-and-politicians/james-o-moran-thomas-ward The third and last tune is related to the playing of the late John Naughton, the East Clare concertina player from Kilclaren, Sliabh Aughty, on the Clare/Galway border.