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 Post subject: Regulators-First Tunes?
PostPosted: Mon Dec 07, 2020 4:09 pm 
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What are some simple tunes for learning to integrate the regs on?


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 07, 2020 9:02 pm 
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A rich vein to mine would be lullabies. I like Baídín Fheilimí, Feilimí´s Little Boat.
Clearly Brahm´s famous Berceuse would be another.

Bob

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 07, 2020 9:14 pm 
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Another would be found here: https://irishpipertom.com/videos/ Our own Tommy Klein playing Seothín Seó.

Bob

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 08, 2020 6:08 am 
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Quote:
Another would be found here: https://irishpipertom.com/videos/ Our own Tommy Klein playing Seothín Seó.Bob


Why doesn't this piper tune his instrument before making these, for the most part, out of tune regulators, video clips? I've looked at a few of them and find them extremely hard to listen to. I'm sure he means well it would sound so much nicer if he made sure his set up was in tune before putting it out there.

Sorry madpiper, regarding your question, Leo Rowsome in his tutor suggests starting off with airs and jigs when beginning to use the regulators. I'd also suggest listening as much as possible to other experienced pipers, and how they use their regulators in tunes. "Connaught heifers and "The Steampacket" are two reels I found suitable to start honing one's regulator technique on.

Very good advice here from Geoff Wooff: http://uilleannobsession.com/extras_geoffwooff.html


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 08, 2020 8:13 am 
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I found it easier to start with a jig that I knew well and could play without thinking about it too much. It helped that I had a recording of another piper playing the same tune with reg accompaniment which I knew well.

It's good to practice with a metronome, and get used to playing the reg on the off beat.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 08, 2020 9:25 am 
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Steampacket wrote:
Quote:
Another would be found here: https://irishpipertom.com/videos/ Our own Tommy Klein playing Seothín Seó.Bob


Why doesn't this piper tune his instrument before making these, for the most part, out of tune regulators, video clips? I've looked at a few of them and find them extremely hard to listen to. I'm sure he means well it would sound so much nicer if he made sure his set up was in tune before putting it out there.


Ouch. Message received. I don’t mean to cause any harm. Back to the tuning woodshed...

Direct comments like this (which, in our tiny piping world carry an oversized punch) speaks to why I’ve never/probably never-will record a cd. But, I’ve got things to say with my instrument, and will still try to get that out there...with greater care toward the tuning.

Back to the original post: Eagle’s Whistle is a great one to start on.

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Last edited by tommykleen on Tue Dec 08, 2020 11:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 08, 2020 11:24 am 
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I find "The Eagle's Whistle" extremely well suited for beginning to explore the regs - the tune itself is easy but beautiful, the entire first part can be played with the bottom hand off the chanter and the regs can be used to great effect with (comparatively) little effort.
Chords can be practiced, the bass parallel to the melody, also a simple harmony (the third below the melody) and even a more complex organ-like arpeggio accompaniment - check out Joe McKenna's version: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dzqXoKc ... enna-Topic


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 08, 2020 2:35 pm 
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"The cook in the kitchen" was a tune mentioned in the past as being a good regs starter.

Possibly because of the dominance of first octave in the first 2 parts, possibly because
structure of the tune lends itself to both vamping and long holds. And, because its a jig.
M


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 08, 2020 3:00 pm 
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Quote:
Ouch. Message received. I don’t mean to cause any harm. Back to the tuning woodshed...
Direct comments like this (which, in our tiny piping world carry an oversized punch) speaks to why I’ve never/probably never-will record a cd. But, I’ve got things to say with my instrument, and will still try to get that out there...with greater care toward the tuning.
TommyKleen


Tom, I just think having a well-tuned set is very important when performing, and recording both audio and video. A set that's in tune just sounds so much better. There's nothing wrong with your piping, keep on keeping on. :thumbsup:

I'm still working on my own piping as regards technique and trying to keep my pipes in tune. It's very dry here just now and for the first time in years my drones are all over the place, and some notes on my baritone and tenor regulators are off. Corona is raging outside, so I'm at home and shall have to try to sort out my tuning issues methodically.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 09, 2020 1:27 pm 
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This is a good one
https://youtu.be/kqd2ePU9sZY
RORY

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 09, 2020 3:22 pm 
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One major problem, and perhaps this is demonstrated by tommykleen : if you tune the regulators to the chanter, or to the known pitches of the chanter , usually the chanter is tuned when both hands are engaged on it, using some 'standard' or piper prefered fingering. When playing the chanter single handed its note pitches are not always exactly the same and the chording with the regulators can sound out of tune.

Perhaps tommykleen could come back to us on that point ?


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 10, 2020 7:52 am 
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geoff wooff wrote:
One major problem, and perhaps this is demonstrated by tommykleen : if you tune the regulators to the chanter, or to the known pitches of the chanter , usually the chanter is tuned when both hands are engaged on it, using some 'standard' or piper prefered fingering. When playing the chanter single handed its note pitches are not always exactly the same and the chording with the regulators can sound out of tune.

Perhaps tommykleen could come back to us on that point ?


You've hit the nail squarely on the head, Geoff! Yes, with the bottom hand off the chanter (for free-hand regulator passages) the upper notes in the lower octave dip. Especially the A and B notes (concert pitch chanter). And sometimes I need to use the Cnatural key, which is really only in tune for the upper octave C. So, these dipped pitches will not only sound flat on the chanter...but makes the regulators sound sharp (by comparison). This is the nature of concert pitched pipes.

The link to one of my pieces above captures a performance with an open G note on the tenor regulator. This causes the C on that regulator to take the pitch-hit. I tried not to dwell on that note, but it's in there. If one objects to such enterprises, you won't enjoy my music (sorry Steampacket, and all others for whom this is a deal breaker). I suppose a solution would be to use the regulators only when they can be played close-handed. That seems like a sad underuse of the instrument to me.

It's all a compromise -one that clearly rankles some- and I understand that. Frankly, the whole instrument -with its just-intonation- feels like a compromise: I was raised in equal temperament by a very stern pitch-taskmaster. [Note: I recall hearing The Brendan Voyage in the '80s and thinking "my god...those pipes are sooo out of tune!" (!). But I figured that out.]

Living in -what effectively is- Honduras in the summer/Siberia in the winter- means I actually do spend huge amounts of time tuning.

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Last edited by tommykleen on Thu Dec 10, 2020 9:21 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 10, 2020 7:54 am 
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That's an interesting topic, on my pipes for whatever reason I can play hand chords with the bottom hand entirely off, and play G, A, and B on the chanter and everything is right in tune.

C natural is a funny thing, I can finger B and hit the C natural key with the thumb of the hand that's playing the regs! For slow tunes of course. And I have to use a special fingering for Back D.

For me the main thing with the regs has been Hymn playing. I do (did!) a lot of church gigs.

Some Hymns I can play the whole melody on the regs, which is a cool effect, while I'm playing moving harmony notes on the chanter.

Hymns are great first-reg tunes because they're simple and slow.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 10, 2020 8:53 am 
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The very simple golden rule, if a particular note on your regs is out of tune, don't play it. You will see discerning pipers testing their pipes between tunes for this reason. I don't think it does any good for the reputation of uilleann pipes for pipers to play pipes out of tune.
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 10, 2020 1:04 pm 
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There will be types of chanter and reed combinations which maintain better note pitch stability with radical changes in fingering, I'm thinking of those Concert Pitch chanters with large tone holes and stiff reeds. In that type of set up the primary vibrating air column, for some notes, should more closely act as if the chanter is cut off at the tone hole and therefore any alteration to fingering below the open tone hole will have very little effect on the pitch and tone of the note. As far as I can see on the videos, and from memory of meeting Tommykleen and his set at last year's WCSS, his chanter does not have very large tone holes and the reed certainly does not sound bullet hard .

As far as compromises are concerned it is perhaps unfortunate that the Uilleann Pipes in their more expressive forms have chanters which produce a variety of tone colours for many notes but using some of that palate comes at a tuning price. Marrying this type of chanter to a set of predetermined harmony notes is perhaps one compromise short of a consensus .

Tommykleen, I find it interesting that your open hand notes are slightly lower in pitch, I find my A's rise a little when my lower hand is removed for tuning the drones and prefer to use G for that purpose as it remains almost correct.


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