When A Man’s in Love

A traditional Irish song played by Sarah McQuaid for Bert Jansch

Recorded in Penzance, Cornwall
March 2022

“I recorded this traditional Irish song on my debut album, When Two Lovers Meet, way back in 1997. It’s one I always use as an example when I’m giving workshops on the DADGAD tuning, because I feel it’s a beautiful illustration. While Bert never recorded this song, my guitar arrangement of it was heavily influenced by his playing.  All the guitar tracks on the Jack Orion album are played in either DADGAD or dropped-D tuning, and I remember listening to them over and over again, trying to work out exactly what he was doing with his fingers and eventually giving up! By the time I was in my early 20s I’d started using the DADGAD tuning exclusively and was a massive fan of Bert Jansch’s style.”

“I particularly loved the way Bert often played a guitar part that contrasted rhythmically and melodically with the vocal line, so that rather than simply a song with guitar accompaniment, the piece became a duet for guitar and voice. That’s something I’ve always striven for in my own music.”