Frank Meehan (1892 – 1969)

Frank playing with Eddie Cahill [source: John Daly]

Frank Meehan of Drimalost was a first cousin of Jim Meehan and they were, in fact born underneath the same roof as next door neighbours. Growing up in the early 1900s, Frank would have recalled the playing of Paddy McDyer and that of his close neighbour, Charlie McCahill. He was also a contemporary of the fiddler, Phil McGroarty and the Monaghan family of Drumkeelan. Frank emigrated to the USA in 1910 where he married Mary Quinn and settled in Philadelphia, right at the start of the 78 rpm recording revolution. There he earned a reputation as a fiddle player and accordionist with the band ‘John McGettigan & his Irish Minstrels’. McGettigan, a native of Carrigart, was one of the most celebrated musicians and singers of this period and a huge influence on Irish song through hits such as ‘Cutting the corn in Creeslough’ and ‘Johnston’s motor car’. Frank was a contemporary of Michael Coleman, James Morrison and The Flanagan brothers, and was a good friend of the Cavan fiddler and composer, Edward Reavy.

Highland Scottische Medley by John McGettigan & his Irish Minstrels, featuring Frank Meehan on fiddle, (originally released on 78rpm in 1930 and re-released on Topic Records, 1979)