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Jim Besser

Theme Of The Month For June, 2015: Waltzes

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Something very different - a remainder from youthful days, which I recently played at a birthday party for a left-wing friend. In fact two marching songs, but the second one altered to 3/4:

 

Sailors from Kronstadt and Kiel - Funeral Waltz

 

Very Haunting, Wolf. These tunes really work well in your style of playing.

 

 

Thanks a lot for your listening and affirmative comment, Geoff! I'm very glad you're liking these somewhat different take!

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Eagle's Whisper Waltz (arranged and played by Ralph Jordan and Irene Shettle)

 

A Maccann duet duet put together by Ralph Jordan and myself for a show that we produced on the life and work of Lucy Broadwood, the Victorian folksong collector and researcher. The original tune was collected by Lucy in 1906 in Cappoquin, County Waterford from a young lady named Bridget Geary. In the six months of rehearsal of the show the tune became somewhat changed (mostly due, I suspect to Ralph's ministrations), and ,as he said during one of our shows when I referred to Lucy probably spinning in her grave at the changes ... "yeah... we made it better ... it's the folk process innit?"

Truth to tell, having gone back to the original I think he was right. Whatever the case, it was fun to play it together, and I still find it infectious and cheerful. The basic tune is played by me (I had only been playing for about six or seven months when we embarked on it all); the embellishments, arabesques and pirouettes around it are all his (and rather lovely they were too). It changed with every playing thanks to his skills at improvisation. This was a live performance for a fundraising concert for the choir that I had sung with for many years.

 

https://soundcloud.com/surreysinger/eagles-whisper-waltz

 

Thanks a lot for posting (commented at SC) and thus directing me to your page - really enjoying Ralph's playing and your singing!

 

Best wishes - Wolf

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Besides, nice cuts that you're playing...

Thanks, Wolf. You beat me to the punch, since I wanted to say how much I enjoyed your take on "The Tennessee Waltz." I'm always impressed to hear something new in an old chestnut, and you certainly accomplished that. Lovely harmonies.

 

Here are a couple more:

 

http://youtu.be/VegRJRstlVA

 

http://youtu.be/wFahjdCbYFo

 

"The Cabri Waltz" comes from the prairies of Canada and/or the U.S. (Cabri is a town in Saskatchewan). It is, or used to be, an American old-time standard; again, I probably learned it back in the '70s from the indispensable Highwoods String Band. And "La complainte du folkloriste" is a tune from Québec, a composition of the late Philippe Bruneau.

 

I really enjoyed the contrast in style and mood between these two Northern tunes when I was recording them. "Waltz" covers a lot of ground--much like "Canada," actually.

 

Bob Michel

Near Philly

 

 

Thanks a lot, Bob - two more lovely tunes and recordings which I really enjoyed. You've been perfectly able to translate the accordion style of the second one to the Anglo

 

And thank you for listening to my reposted waltz, good to learn that it pleases you!

 

Best wishes - Wolf

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Fickle Moon, by our own Jody Kruskal.

 

I play this in Squeezers, but with the group I either play just melody or just rhythm. I wanted to do this solo because I've had a hard time figuring out the best way to do both because of the chording and the limitations of a 30 button Anglo. And I'd like it to flow more smoothly.

 

Like most of Jody's tunes, this one is really worth the effort. Fickle Moon is in his first tunebook, Feet in the Clouds. Both his books are full of great tunes; I highly recommend them. http://jodykruskal.com/buy_stuff.html

Jim, to my ears you're living up to the challenge - an interesting tune which I haven't heard from Jody's playing as yet, enjoying your track (all the more as I'm really fond of fully fledged solo playing, as you will have recognized by now).

 

Best wishes - Wolf

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Thanks a lot for posting (commented at SC) and thus directing me to your page - really enjoying Ralph's playing and your singing!

 

Best wishes - Wolf

 

Thanks for those kind words Wolf. Ralph was talking about recording the pieces "properly" in the year before he died. It would have been good to do so. These are rehearsal recordings , but nevertheless I like listening to what he did with his Maccann - it was always an inspiration, and quite often a bit of a surprise (sometimes even to him) what came out!

 

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In the spirit of trying to stretch the category a bit here are three sets of waltzes from concerts I've been involved with.

 

https://www.dropbox.com/s/hk9ajzv0jlfan4d/04%20Somewhere%20My%20Love_Bella%20Notte.mp3?dl=0

 

Somewhere my Love (from Dr. Zhivago, and Belle Notte from Lady and the Tramp.

 

https://www.dropbox.com/s/x21gockptyjl6xp/09%20Two%20Wassails.mp3?dl=0

 

Two well known Wassails. There's an accordion in here too, but most of the reed melody playing is concertina.

 

https://www.dropbox.com/s/znui0nty5lfr4ja/02%20Northern%20Lights.mp3?dl=0

 

The Northern Lights of Old Aberdeen sung with instrumental interludes of Highland Cradle Song and A Starry Night in Shetland. I think I may have put this one out here before. Sorry if it is a duplication.

 

Edited to add: I just checked these and they all worked fine, but along the way they opened links into other parts of my Public dropbox. If that happens to you feel free to look around.

Edited by cboody

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... He said it was from an animated documentary called Crac! by Frederic Back, which chronicles the history of Quebec through the eyes of a rocking chair. The soundtrack was done by the group Le Reve du Diable and the film won an Oscar in the 80s

 

Here is the film- entire soundtrack is traditional Quebecois music

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xsWU-nksQWA

 

Wow. I haven't seen that film since 1984 and it brought tears to my eyes then as now. And I had just learned "Mackilmoyle's Reel," which is all over the film. Thanks.

 

My own entry will have to be a repeat, as I am away from home this week sans concertina (Boston Early Music Festival). This is one of my favorite tunes to play. I recorded it for a previous Theme of the Month a year and a half ago. I am drawn to tunes that are awkward to play on the Hayden (because of intervals like the augmented 2nd: Eb - F#), and this is certainly one of them. Larry Edelman's "Mid-Winter Waltz."

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Hi Jim, this is in fact making for a very nice WIP to my ears. I just love the Perlman version (thank you for posting it), however I believe the tune can be very nicely done on the concertina (regardless the type) as well. Looking forward to your further developing your effort, please keep us updated!

 

Best wishes - Wolf

Edited by blue eyed sailor

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I always wanted to learn Andy Statman's wonderful klezmer tune, the Flatbush Waltz, and this month's theme got me to stop procrastinating and actually do it.

 

It was written in Gm, and most of the best recordings - including Andy's - are in that key. Gm is a great key for klezmer tunes -but on the CG or GD Anglo, it's hard to do Gm with good chords. So I moved it to Em, which I don't think sounds as good, but works better on my instruments.

 

There are a lot of variations in the notation available on the Web and on the various recorded versions available on YouTube and Spotify. Mine combines elements of several versions I've heard and liked, and it's very much an unfinished product. I'm not thrilled with the chords and plan to try some other possibilities.

 

The most amazing version, if you're interested, is the one by Itzhak Perlman and the Andy Statman orchestra, here. What would it be like to be able to play like that?

very nice indeed

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Hmmm. I should have listened before posting. AN extra beat in the B part on the run? Gotta go back and fix that.

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Hmmm. I should have listened before posting. AN extra beat in the B part on the run? Gotta go back and fix that.

While you're fixing, you are consistently playing a 4-beat measure as the 2nd and 10th measures of the B section. :ph34r:

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