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Jim Besser

Theme Of The Month For November, 2014: Something Irish

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I'm new to the forum (see my post "Delurking" in "General Concertina Discussion"). Since ITM is most of what I do on the instrument, I figured I may as well pitch right in on this Theme. So here's a favorite set dance played on a 40 button Lachenal Anglo. No slur intended against any Gaugers in the group.

 

Bob Michel

 

http://youtu.be/VodzZoepooA

 

Very nicely playing Bob, and a good exemple of concertina face too... :ph34r:

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I don't make any claims to play in Irish style but there are several Irish tunes I enjoy playing.

 

Here is a little medley of two O'Carolan tunes; Eleanor Plunkett and Fanny Powers played on my Anglo with added accompaniment.

 

As I've said before, I'm essentially a melody player on the Anglo - at least for tunes - so I add accompaniment using other instrumen

 

Nicely done Geoff, enjoyed my listening and commented on SC...

 

Best wishes - Wolf

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A couple of standard double jigs: Junior Crehan's classic composition The Mist-Covered Mountain followed by Tatter Jack Walsh. An attempt at a bit of irish on the English.

 

On an English? Impressive? I know the first one, but haven't heard the second until now - great tune.

 

Thanks for the comment, Jim. I've been trying to apply some lessons gleaned from the "Irish on the English thread", and working on something Steve Mansfield (?I think?) said in passing about using the bellows to shape each note. Harder to do at speed but I'm aiming to get my playing "chunkier" - do-able with jigs but harder on reels. Witness this recording! The Traveller and Old Copperplate. A bit shaky in places but, as others have observed, ain't it tough playing into a recorder.

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"Witness this recording! The Traveller and Old Copperplate. "

Brilliant playing Chas.

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Whilst rehearsing a set of jgs I recorded another slow air (WIP):

 

Danny Boy

(not at the same time, obviously).

Edited by blue eyed sailor

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Whilst rehearsing a set of jgs I recorded another slow air (WIP):

 

Danny Boy

(not at the same time, obviously).

 

 

Excellent, thanks.

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Whilst rehearsing a set of jgs I recorded another slow air (WIP):

 

Danny Boy

(not at the same time, obviously).

 

Excellent, thanks.

 

Thank you Jim, I'm delighted!

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A couple of standard double jigs: Junior Crehan's classic composition The Mist-Covered Mountain followed by Tatter Jack Walsh. An attempt at a bit of irish on the English.

 

On an English? Impressive? I know the first one, but haven't heard the second until now - great tune.

 

Thanks for the comment, Jim. I've been trying to apply some lessons gleaned from the "Irish on the English thread", and working on something Steve Mansfield (?I think?) said in passing about using the bellows to shape each note. Harder to do at speed but I'm aiming to get my playing "chunkier" - do-able with jigs but harder on reels. Witness this recording! The Traveller and Old Copperplate. A bit shaky in places but, as others have observed, ain't it tough playing into a recorder.

 

A word of caution; you may have picked up the other end of the stick Chas.

 

It is the 'Internal Rhythm' which you need to concentrate on more than note emphasis from the Bellows.

 

Imagine you are playing the pipes , where no change in volume is possible, for the most part, to mark the rhythm. The Piper gives the meter by lengthening and shortening the notes in the bars. A typical internal rhythm patern for a double jig could feel like:

 

Dumb- De- Cha , Dumb- De- Cha say this phrase without much loudness emphasis but keep the 'Dumb' full length and shorten the 'De' and keep each sound seperate. So this makes the first note of each three note group longer, the second is shortest and the third's length is somewhere in between This internal shuffle must be kept regular through all the bars so as not to unsettle the Dancer , or listener, even though not all bars have six 'equal' length notes... ( and that is the point... they are not of equal length).

 

By organising the internal rhythm in this way the tune suddenly locks together like. a Jigsaw Puzzle and the Measure and Gait stabilise beautifully.

 

A similar effect happens with Reels if they are treated to an Internal Rhythm more like a Hornpipe. I'll try to find time to make some example recordings.

 

For a very authentic approach to all this I recommend listening carefully to the first CD from Mary MacNamara " Traditional music fro East Clare" (Claddagh Records 1994). Mary plays at an un-hurried pace and shuffles along with all the internal rhythm emphasis in a very natural way.

 

On second thoughts perhaps Mary Mac's latest album "Note for Note" 2014 is even better to study because it is totally solo and her uncluttered style is so clearly played.

 

Still, it is coming along nicely Chas.

 

Geoff.

Edited by Geoff Wooff

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Whilst rehearsing a set of jgs I recorded another slow air (WIP):

Danny Boy

(not at the same time, obviously).

Nice playing but I was hoping you'd be singing on this one.

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Whilst rehearsing a set of jgs I recorded another slow air (WIP):

Danny Boy

(not at the same time, obviously).

Nice playing but I was hoping you'd be singing on this one.

 

That's part of the progress to come... B)

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Thanks for the comment, Jim. I've been trying to apply some lessons gleaned from the "Irish on the English thread", and working on something Steve Mansfield (?I think?) said in passing about using the bellows to shape each note. Harder to do at speed but I'm aiming to get my playing "chunkier" - do-able with jigs but harder on reels. Witness this recording! The Traveller and Old Copperplate. A bit shaky in places but, as others have observed, ain't it tough playing into a recorder.

 

A word of caution; you may have picked up the other end of the stick Chas.

 

It is the 'Internal Rhythm' which you need to concentrate on more than note emphasis from the Bellows.

 

Geoff.

 

Thanks for the detailed feedback, Geoff. Much appreciated. I think there are two different issues here. The matter of giving a separate impulse to almost every note is exactly parallel to Conal O'Grada's teaching on Irish flute, which is to use glottal stops on most notes. On the EC it's all about avoiding the dreaded built-in legato, giving the tune some definition and life.

The internal pulse is also crucial but, frankly, if I haven't sussed that after 15 years of Irish flute playing, I never will. Surely pipers have to do what you describe because they have no other option. Other instruments can use dynamics more. The varied note lengths you describe are used by some but by no means all the players whose recordings appear in my collection - admittedly not including Ms McNamara. I would aim for a longer first beat if playing a roll but not as a rule throughout a jig.

As for reels. I find some lend themselves to "swinging" more than others. Do please make some recordings. That would be really helpful and what this forum should be all about. despite my best efforts, I suspect the last recording I posted is not so very different from the way I was playing reels on EC 40 years ago!

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Some very nice music on this theme. I especially like very beautiful slow airs played this month. It makes me want to learn and play this slow air "annaghdown pier" which I heard from Mairtin O'Connor, one of my favourite irish accordion player. It was a long time ago and I recorded him during a concert with an old "minidisc".. I do not know a lot about this tune, perhaps it is a composition from Mairtin O'Connor himself.. If someone knows...

 

https://soundcloud.com/thoon-1/anaghdown-pier

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Some very nice music on this theme. I especially like very beautiful slow airs played this month. It makes me want to learn and play this slow air "annaghdown pier" which I heard from Mairtin O'Connor, one of my favourite irish accordion player. It was a long time ago and I recorded him during a concert with an old "minidisc".. I do not know a lot about this tune, perhaps it is a composition from Mairtin O'Connor himself.. If someone knows...

 

https://soundcloud.com/thoon-1/anaghdown-pier

 

Very nice! It's on Mairtin's "Chatterbox" album (written by him) - the CD notes say "The tranquility of the pier, late one summer's evening (when the weather was good!), suggested this air to me".

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Some very nice music on this theme. I especially like very beautiful slow airs played this month. It makes me want to learn and play this slow air "annaghdown pier" which I heard from Mairtin O'Connor, one of my favourite irish accordion player. It was a long time ago and I recorded him during a concert with an old "minidisc".. I do not know a lot about this tune, perhaps it is a composition from Mairtin O'Connor himself.. If someone knows...

 

https://soundcloud.com/thoon-1/anaghdown-pier

 

Wonderful version of a lovely tune.

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Some really nice stuff this month. I like it all but I am surprised that, so far, we have had no real die-hard ITM breakneck Anglo playing.

 

Like this? I learned these polkas from my friend Valerie Rose, who got them from Dale Russ. I'm playing them on a very old 31 button C/G Anglo that's probably a Crabb and was restored decades ago by Stephen Chambers.

Edited by Daniel Hersh

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Some really nice stuff this month. I like it all but I am surprised that, so far, we have had no real die-hard ITM breakneck Anglo playing.

 

Like this? I learned these polkas from my friend Valerie Rose, who got them from Dale Russ. I'm playing them on a very old 31 button C/G Anglo that's probably a Crabb and was restored decades ago by Stephen Chambers.

 

 

Nice. What' the name of the first? There are so many great Irish polkas!

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Some really nice stuff this month. I like it all but I am surprised that, so far, we have had no real die-hard ITM breakneck Anglo playing.

 

Like this? I learned these polkas from my friend Valerie Rose, who got them from Dale Russ. I'm playing them on a very old 31 button C/G Anglo that's probably a Crabb and was restored decades ago by Stephen Chambers.

 

Nice. What' the name of the first? There are so many great Irish polkas!

 

I think it's the Clare Polka, or possibly the West Clare Polka.

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