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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2002 12:21 pm 
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Friends,

After reading over the FAQ sheet with the post concerning reading written music and listening and learning by ear, I am a bit confused.

When I posted a question I used the term "seen it both ways" refering to the fact I had seen a note in a tune as a C Nat and as a C# in another book.

Peter, who did answer my question (thanks BTW) made a comment on my having said "seen it both ways" I supposed instead of saying "Heard it both ways". I finally found out what he was referring to. So here's my problem...

I wasn't born in Ireland or reared hearing these tunes sung to me in my cradle by a grandfatherly Leo Rowsome, I can't really afford to buy up every CD of ITM I can find, and don't have many or nearly any other ITM players or a session near where I live.

I do read music and also play by ear. I have played Bluegrass since 12 (oops sorry I mentioned another taboo subject :^P ) and play by ear and can hear tunes. I learn them that way when I can, but depend on the tunes I've downloaded like Henrik's and others. I also have several books. Now I read some of those books are not popular because of the writer's interpetation.

Is this site for the purist and should I move on? I've played for about 3 years and love the music, but I can barely remember the names of the tunes I've learned much less the county they're from and how that county's influence dictates how I play the tune. Whether the style reflected their aversion to rolls following the potatoe famine, etc.

I promise not to ask a cran question, advertise the whistles I make out of old Slurpee straws, or anything else that would arch an eyebrow or two, I wonder though...

Am I going to feel welcome here?

Respectfully submitted,
Tim Harkleroad


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2002 12:50 pm 
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Tim,

Though I don't represent those who developed this forum in any way, I think it's safe to say that anyone with a genuine interest in ITM is welcome here. I share one of your guilty secrets (play in a bluegrass-y band) and I feel welcome here. I also have a formal background in classical music theory, and I'm looking to understand how my way of listening to and appreciating ITM differs from or converges with the traditionalists. I've learned so much on that subject from the posts here. And, yes, I read music, even prefer to learn my tunes from the printed page, though I can do it by ear too. This forum and its most active participants have really led me on a musical journey so far, and I am grateful for it.

Carol


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2002 1:50 pm 
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I come from a music reading background as well. My only comments are what I apply to myself.

Learn fewer tunes better and keep lookin away from the stand. Use your reading skills for finding new tunes but don't fall into the trap of always treating the tunes like sightreading. Keep a percentage of your self attuned to the proposition of what you would do to learn it if you didn't read.

Often the printed page pulls you away from the consciousness of what and how you are playing. Recording shows that up because you often find that what seemed to be going smoothly really wasn't but enough of your attention was diverted by the page to foster that misconception.

It sounds so ridiculously simple to say it, but you either know a tune or you don't. For meaningful interchange with others, ya gotta do it without the sheet. Focus on the feeling the tune engenders within you, and imagine a musician starting up a tune, you having a glimmer of recogntion, then joining in. no scrambling for the sheet, but having the synapses click in your head.

And no matter what you think, you can learn tons of tunes, but maybe not in the learning method you thought it would take to do so.

I became director of a folk music group about four years ago after having been a sheet music classical reader for several decades. I had to learn all these old Gold Rush songs to perform live and music was out of the question. I started from scratch and with the mindset that it was always others who could memorize, not me. I became the best "memorizer" in the group of 10 musicians. I still don't know how I did it, but you just have to suspend your self-disbelief. Tunes are harder, cause there aren;t words, but it will be the same process to get them, i think.

You mentioned titles: based on everything I have experienced thus far, song titles don't count as much as that same feeling a tune represents. Thats why so many tunes have multiple titles. I just don't think its a priority to know what they're called as much as having the sound of it in the ol' memory banks.

Learn it by heart and with your heart. But do collect and listen to those historic CDs to remember what we're all celebratin!

I have really enjoyed the personal connection this Forum has given me and its a good way to learn the tunes. The Junior Crehan tune that BSteve offered is the first reel I play now when I practice and I feel great to have learned it because of the love, memories and admiration of living people I correspond with who had direct experience of a celebrated player. I can't imagine that the others on this Forum would not want to pull you into this circle so you can enjoy the music as well....


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2002 2:51 pm 
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Location: The middle of a corn field...
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On 2002-09-09 14:21, TnWhistler wrote:
I do read music and also play by ear. I have played Bluegrass since 12 (oops sorry I mentioned another taboo subject :^P ) and play by ear and can hear tunes. I learn them that way when I can, but depend on the tunes I've downloaded like Henrik's and others. I also have several books. Now I read some of those books are not popular because of the writer's interpetation.


Well, you can be sure that here you'll always be strongly encouraged to learn by ear, but we won't throw you out if you don't(I don't think so, anyway!).

Quote:
Is this site for the purist and should I move on?


Well, this is a forum for those who love the music, for anyone who is willing to listen to or exchange ideas about the tunes, and who want to improve their playing through it all. Or to put it another way, the idea behind this forum is that it's about the tunes, and specific aspects of playing the tunes. At least, that's roughly my view of this forum.

There are heavy purist influences, but I don't see why you should have a problem with that. There are not-so-purists on this forum as well.

Quote:
I've played for about 3 years and love the music, but I can barely remember the names of the tunes I've learned much less the county they're from and how that county's influence dictates how I play the tune. Whether the style reflected their aversion to rolls following the potatoe famine, etc.


Well, I never worry whether a tune is regional or not! The first time I read that paragraph I thought "What?!!? Who thinks about that?" and read it again. I've never seen anyone on this board worry about the effect of the potato famine on how tunes ought to be played, and for that matter, I never expect to see it... :smile:

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I promise not to ask a cran question, advertise the whistles I make out of old Slurpee straws, or anything else that would arch an eyebrow or two, I wonder though...


:smile: Good. You had better not. :wink:

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Am I going to feel welcome here?


Well, only time will tell. I will certianly do my best whenever possible, but I cannot speak for others. I recommend you log on regularly for a while and find out.

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Nate

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: energy on 2002-09-09 16:54 ]</font>

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: energy on 2002-09-09 16:55 ]</font>


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2002 3:36 pm 
I think the fact we make an effort publishing transcription of tunes here should tell you something about the attitude towards written music. If you listen to the sound clips attached however, you will hopefully realise the musical notation is a limited tool which only shows you the bare notes of the performance, to understand the music properly, you will have to depend on your ear.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 10, 2002 8:50 am 
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Thanks everyone, I feel I can learn alot from all of you. I do, by the way, never play by music, I use it only as a learning tool. I first memorize the tunes and then work on expression and how I can even combine it with other tunes into a set.

I am glad to know that you folks took my post seriously and hope to contribute all I can. I have been transcribing some tunes into abc format and find it fun and rewarding.

Where should I post tunes? Paste them into the body of a post like this? One of my best friends was Malcolm Kennedy from Inverness Scotland. An amazing button accordian player. he played both Scottish and Irish tunes, more Irish than any. Before his death he taught me several tunes I learned on the banjo, but I remember several of tham and found he had verses on some of them that I haven't seen anywhere else.

I have transcribed a few and would like to share. They aren't his original compositions but I know his variations. sadly Mal passe away 2 years ago and was awarded posthumously Scotland best button acc. player in 2000.

Thaks Peter,and everyone, and BTW I was being fecitious about the potato famine's influence thing.

I LOVE THIS MUSIC!

Tim


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 10, 2002 8:55 am 
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You are more than welcome to post abc's in the message body. I'm sure all of us would appreciate your sharing them.

Teri


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 10, 2002 10:23 am 
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Location: Back home in the Green and Musty Isle, in Dublin.
Phew! Another Split in the Movement averted. (Of course a true purist would argue that any group of people that have remained on good terms with each other this long without quarrelling lack some of the essential Irish qualities...)

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2002 9:39 am 
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Roger O'Keeffe wrote:
"(Of course a true purist would argue that any group of people that have remained on good terms with each other this long without quarrelling lack some of the essential Irish qualities...)"

I hope this is not some hidden side-effect of EU membership and the Euro! =8^0

Best Regards,

dave boling


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2002 10:48 am 
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Quote:
On 2002-09-10 12:23, Roger O'Keeffe wrote:
Phew! Another Split in the Movement averted...


Did I miss something? What was averted? What movement?

Curious George-er, I mean, Nate


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2002 5:46 am 
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Location: Back home in the Green and Musty Isle, in Dublin.
Nate: I'll send you a PM, I don't want this board to go way the whistle board has been going lately, and that was the purpose behind my light-hearted post.

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