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Brenda Stubbert's Reel


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I like this reel because it's a good crossover and around here in Nova Scotia, both Cape Breton and Irish players know it.

But I"m having a hellava time getting it up to speed.

Any suggestions for fingerings on a Wheatstone Morse?

Or is this tune simply not concertina friendly?

Edited to add: just b/c Mohsen Amini can play it at speed doesn't mean that mere mortals can...


All tricks and tips appreciated.




Edited by Halifax
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I don't know if you are trying to learn it by ear, or if you have the sheet music. or even if you read music. 

I've never played this one, so I can't offer any tips, or tricks, or preferred fingerings, but I do see that there are several settings for this tune over at the Session.


Several settings are in A dorian, which means the same key signature as G major so it ought to be possible even on a 20 button C/g Anglo.  Of course the reversals on the third row may help with getting it up to speed.  Hard to pick out but it sounds like the fiddle is playing a version in a style similar to the first or third setting, I think the concertina isn't playing all of those embellishments, although difficult to keep track.  Something like the second or fifth setting ought to do, even if others are playing all the frills. I assume that A dorian is the original key, so I didn't look at the other two settings.


They were clearly joking about taking it slow in that video!  I'm no expert, that is WAY faster than I've ever played anything, on any instrument.  They have impressive technical skill to be able to do this, but too fast for the tune in my opinion, as I really would prefer to hear the music when I listen to it, rather than miss most of it.  Sessions in a pub can get going pretty fast. That is fun if you can do it, but it doesn't serve the music well, and if this tune was ever played as a reel for dancing it would need to be much slower.  In my opinion if you can get this playing this at even 1/2 the speed of the video then you are already close; anything more than 2/3 the speed of the video is too fast.


Edit to say I DO like the tune, despite my curmudgeonly comments.  Thanks for sharing it.

Edited by Tradewinds Ted
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Thanks for the response, Ted.
I can play the thing, but not up to session speed---and will Iikely never be able to play at the mach speed they play in the video.


I agree wholeheartedly about speeding in pub sessions. At my local, we've been discussing it a lot lately. This Comhaltas article came across my newsfeed this week:


Still, it's a fine progression from dirge tempo to respectable tempo to a bit fast to speeding. I'm trying to practice my way out of the dirge tempo...





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