I've just found the book on Irish Traveller Pipers fascinating and the transcriptions of Doran, Furey , Rooney et al. are marvellous ( see other post)
When I'm transcribing from CDs etc I listen a great deal to work the tune out in phrases. (I've not yet got round to a slowdowner! so it's slower but keeps the feel of the original player with you) The last few notes of any bar of phrase can be thought of as the lead in notes to the next bar. Just as we start a tune with a few bridge, kick off or lead notes it helps the flow. This may be obvious to others but it's been helpful. There is a second paper that can be accessed on the web, apparently no 3 is not out yet..
I also find an analysis of bars to find how they are related in the tune useful and also an approach that feels like 'call or response' or forward and back as in a dance useful in exploring tunes.
Edited by michael sam wild, 18 April 2012 - 08:17 AM.