Music of the Regiment...


The origin of Killaloe..
Regimental Quick March of The Royal Irish Rangers

Killaloe is a popular march in the Irish Regiments of the British army . The following is some of the background to the tune . Killaloe was written around 1887 by a 41-year-old Irish composer named Robert Martin, for the London Musical "Miss Esmeralda" and sung by a Mr E J Lohnen. The lyrics relate the sorry story of a French teacher attempting to make himself understood to a difficult Killaloe class who, totally misunderstand his French, and as a consequence beat him up.  The Killaloe song, with original melody in 2/4 time, was made well known in military circles by a cousin of Lt. Charles Martin, who served with the 88th Connaught Rangers (The Devil's Own) from 1888 until his death in 1893. He composed a new set of lyrics, in 6/8 time, celebrating his Regiment's fame, and although no mention is made of the tune in the Regimental history, there is an interesting explanation which may well account for the shout or yell in the military version of Killaloe.  In the lst. Battalion (Connaught Rangers), formerly the 88th, a favourite march tune was "Brian Boru" and this was played generally when the Battalion was marching through a town, or when after a hot and heavy march, the Battalion was feeling the strain and the Commanding Officer wished to revive the spirits of the men.
On such occasions, at a time generally given by the Sergeant-Major, all ranks would give a regular "Connaught Yell". during which the Band would make a pause, and then continue playing.  The march became popular among the other Irish Regiments and various other sets of lyrics were devised, some none too complimentary in tone.  The first known recording of Killaloe was made by Richard Dimbleby when serving as a BBC war correspondent somewhere in North France in 1939/1940, shortly before Dunkirk, during an outside broadcast of advancing troops. The "Famous Irish Regiment" Dimbleby reports playing as they march past Is not actually named. but would have been either the Royal Irish Fusiliers or the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers.
Again in 1944, the BBC recorded The 1st. Battalion, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers Pipes & Drums playing Killaloe, by then adopted unofficially as the march of the famous 38th (Irish) Brigade, during the approach to Cassino.
Killaloe was adopted by The Royal Irish Rangers on its formation on lst. July 1968 and again later by the Royal Irish Regiment on its amalgamation in 1992 .



4 Bands in One

The Royal Irish Rangers were unique in the British Army as they were the only regiment who had 4 seperate bands that played as one.

The Bugles
The Pipes
The Drums
And of course the Regimental Band

This produced a unique sound, (as you can hear through out this website ) and that along with their finesse, is what made the band very popular and famous through out the world.



Pictures

       
                      Bugles                                                            Pipes & Drums


Massed Band of the 1st Battalion




More info will be added soon