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 Post subject: Re: Jigs
PostPosted: Tue Sep 03, 2019 5:22 am 
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On the subject of jigs: perhaps it is a good idea to just put them aside for the moment and listen to them played well in order to start making sense of them. Like a lot of music, Irish dance music can sound like an endless stream of notes when you don't really know what you're listening too. Some listening experience can make all the difference.

It could, in the meantime, be worth investigating slightly simpler types of tunes, single jigs perhaps, that have a bit more 'space' in them and transition on from there. But for the moment, just listen and if you hear something that appeals to you, listen to it a bit more and then put it on the whistle and see how you go from there.

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 Post subject: Re: Jigs
PostPosted: Tue Sep 03, 2019 5:47 am 
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Like a lot of music, Irish dance music can sound like an endless stream of notes when you don't really know what you're listening too.

Thanks Mr Gumby that’s what I am finding and I am going to listen more.

My biggest problem seems to be able to play with any rhythm when the jig is a long series of 6 quavers to each bar as in the Father O’Flynn Jig (which I like by the way). I seem to achieve a better rhythm when there are plenty of crotchets or dotted crotchets in the mix such as Cock O’ The North.
Hope that makes sense. I am finding some simpler jigs such as the Kerfunten jig, I Will If I Can (Hexam Races), Off She Goes etc which seem to better suit my speed and they have plenty of crotchets in the mix.

I’ll get there in time as I am stubborn and anyway it’s good fun.

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 Post subject: Re: Jigs
PostPosted: Tue Sep 03, 2019 5:57 am 
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Quote:
My biggest problem seems to be able to play with any rhythm when the jig is a long series of 6 quavers to each bar as in the Father O’Flynn Jig (which I like by the way).


That's where learning how a tune is phrased, the structure of it, comes into it. It's not a succession of six notes of equal length to the bar, it's a succession of musical phrases that do not actually line up with barlines (if you are looking at a piece written down). There's a statement-response structure going on that breaks up the tune into little parts. Once you learn to grasp that, the whole thing should fall into place.

Look at the Shandon Bells on Bro Steve's transcription page linked above, the description goes into all that a bit, if I remember it correctly.

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Last edited by Mr.Gumby on Tue Sep 03, 2019 9:45 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Jigs
PostPosted: Tue Sep 03, 2019 6:14 am 
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Thanks Mr Gumby. You have given me plenty to go on with. I really appreciate it. I will let you know how I get on in due course.
All the best


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 Post subject: Re: Jigs
PostPosted: Sun Sep 08, 2019 8:29 pm 
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Mr Gumby your advice re jig music not just being a series of 6 notes restricted to bar lines but rather a series of phrases has been really helpful. I woke up the other day with this jig rhythm going through my head something like “da-Did -a-da, Did-a da, Did-a-da, Did-a -da, Did- a-da, Did -a-da, Did-a da, DA ; da, Did-a-da and so on”. I applied that rhythm to the Blackthorn Stick (which is a jig I knew I should be able to manage but which never sounded right) and there’s it was a proper sounding jig with melody and rhythm. Woohoo!
I also found that I can now add some rhythmic ornaments to that part of the Tune where you have a note followed by two of the same notes. I used to just separate the two repeating notes by tonguing both notes as recommended by Roger Millington but I was never happy with the results. Ornaments seem to flow a bit better in that instance in my humble opinion.
I am going to restrict myself to playing jigs for the next month so they become so ingrained the rhythm can’t be lost.
Once again thanks for you help.


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 Post subject: Re: Jigs
PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2019 6:04 am 
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JTU wrote:
I have found that the Scottish jigs such as Cock O’ the North and the English jigs such as The Oyster Girl are easier to learn than the more frantic and less melodic Irish jigs.


Tricky if not impossible to define in a way that's widely agreed upon, terms like "frantic" and "melodic".

If by "frantic" we mean note density, true that it's common for Highland pipe jigs to have more long notes than is typical for Irish double jigs. Oftentimes a bar of a Highland pipe jig to have only two notes (two dotted quarternotes).

I opened the first Highland pipe book to hand and the first three jigs (The Kitchen Maid, Minnie Hynd, and Paddy's Leather Breeches) have bars 1, 3, and 5 of the second part having only two notes per bar.

Irish double jigs like to keep the gears churning, by comparison, with the main movement being six notes per bar. (The popular Highland pipe jig Barbara's Jig, in the first part, has only one bar with six notes in it https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tt_7sTw9qXw )

Personally I don't equate note density with frantic. An Irish double jig has a nice flow to it, if played well.

About "melodic", that's personal taste, though for sure there are tunes that have wide intervals having a jagged feel while others move scalewise for a smoother feel.

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 Post subject: Re: Jigs
PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2019 8:54 am 
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JTU wrote:
I have found that the Scottish jigs such as Cock O’ the North and the English jigs such as The Oyster Girl are easier to learn than the more frantic and less melodic Irish jigs.
I agree about them being easier to learn, but although they are 'jigs' they are such a different sort of beast to an Irish double jig that I wonder if the comparison is relevant. Irish single jigs are a lot closer but I worry that playing them in away influenced by English jigs may lead me astray. John Doonan's playing may be a good reference point for that.


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 Post subject: Re: Jigs
PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2019 7:28 pm 
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Highland pipes being my first instrument, I never thought of Cock Of The North as being a jig.

On the pipes it sounds like this, to my ear distinctly a 6/8 march rather than a jig

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iRadntCrd9k

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 Post subject: Re: Jigs
PostPosted: Thu Sep 12, 2019 4:14 am 
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Quote:
I never thought of Cock Of The North as being a jig.


Thinking anything in 6/8 is a jig is a classic (beginner's) mistake. In fairness though, as Auntie Mary had a Canary it does do the rounds in certain rushy, mountainy areas as a single jig.

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 Post subject: Re: Jigs
PostPosted: Thu Sep 12, 2019 7:09 am 
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Quote
“Highland pipes being my first instrument, I never thought of Cock Of The North as being a jig.

On the pipes it sounds like this, to my ear distinctly a 6/8 march rather than a jig

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=

As Mr Gumby says “I have made that classic beginners mistake”. At least I am a classic beginner - I thought I might have been was worse than that.

Richard that sounds great. I have ripped that audio to my iTunes library and copied it to my iPod so as I can play along to it.
Are Bonnie Dundee and the Campbell’s Are Coming likewise 6/8 Marches?.I like the them both and I have been playing them as jigs with this niggling feeling that something is not quite right.

Cheers JTU


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