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Ten-Penny Bit


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First, a warm shout-out to all the great people who came to NESI, especially Ken Sweeney and Frank Edgley both of whom I was delighted to see again. They even had a wonderful workshop together. That alone was worth the price of admission.

I miss Bucksteep, but the cabin accomodations were very much nicer.


I like sea-faring novels, and sea-faring music.

I lately came across a tune on a CD entitled "Classic Maritime Music", Smithsonian Folkways Recordings, number 13, "Ten-Penny Bit" performed by Ellen Cohn on the concertina. I fell in love with the tune.

Any of you also fans of this beautiful tune?

Does anyone have the musical notation for it, so I can try to learn it?

Many thanks! And best wishes to all


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I don't know if this is the tune you are looking for, but here's the version I know:




T:Tenpenny Bit






e |: "Amin"eAA eAA | "G"BAB GBd | "Amin"eAA eAA | "G"def gfg |

"Amin"eAA eAA | "G"BAB GBd | "Emin"edB "G"gdB |1 "Amin"BAA A2 e :|2 "Amin"BAA A2 B ||

|: "Amin"A2 a aga | "Emin"bge "G"dBG | "Amin"A2 a aga | "Emin"bge "G"g2 d | "Amin"e2 a aga |

"Emin"bge "G"dBd | "Emin"edB "G"gdB |1 "Amin"BAA A2 B :|2 "Amin"B[AA]A A2 |]

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The musical notation for the tune is in the "Paul Hardy session tunebook" which can be found on the internet and downloaded.


I presume the dots would be on mudcat too but in the meantime here is a performance by Hectorawol whom I always find entertaining and I wonder if that's not a gray Paolo Soprani he is playing on!


and then a slower version



All it needs now is a concertina version up there (hint hint! -would a deadline help you progess? Say a ten pennny piece in the old man's hat for Christmas? :)

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Thank you all! I"m off and sailing, enthusiastically learning this lovely tune.

You have empowered me!

Isn't that an amazing process?... you hear a tune you like, amazingly enough, others have heard it too, people respond from across the seas, you find the musical notation and in nothing flat, you're off and playing the tune, yourself! Nothing short of miraculous. I almost have to pinch myself, is this a dream? Wish all things in life we work hard at were this gratifying.

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  • 3 weeks later...

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