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New Sheffield session - local tunes

Paul Davenport 24 Jan 11 - 10:25 AM
Paul Davenport 25 Jan 11 - 05:01 AM
GUEST,MC Fat (at work) 25 Jan 11 - 05:26 AM
Paul Davenport 26 Jan 11 - 05:25 AM
Folkiedave 27 Jan 11 - 05:39 AM
Les in Chorlton 27 Jan 11 - 06:08 AM
Valmai Goodyear 27 Jan 11 - 07:00 AM
Les in Chorlton 27 Jan 11 - 07:29 AM
Les in Chorlton 27 Jan 11 - 09:56 AM
greg stephens 27 Jan 11 - 10:29 AM
Paul Davenport 27 Jan 11 - 11:31 AM
Les in Chorlton 27 Jan 11 - 11:38 AM
Paul Davenport 27 Jan 11 - 02:55 PM
greg stephens 27 Jan 11 - 03:12 PM
Les in Chorlton 27 Jan 11 - 03:17 PM
Paul Davenport 28 Jan 11 - 04:35 AM
GUEST,Chris P. 28 Jan 11 - 05:03 PM
Les in Chorlton 29 Jan 11 - 04:49 AM
Paul Davenport 29 Jan 11 - 05:59 AM
Les in Chorlton 29 Jan 11 - 06:29 AM
Will Fly 29 Jan 11 - 08:13 AM
Paul Davenport 30 Jan 11 - 05:12 AM
Will Fly 30 Jan 11 - 05:17 AM
Paul Davenport 30 Jan 11 - 02:43 PM
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Subject: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: Paul Davenport
Date: 24 Jan 11 - 10:25 AM

After playing at the Blind Fiddlers Benefit last week, several people expressed an interest in getting together regularly to play local tunes. So, the venue is the Hillsborough Hotel, Langsett Rd. Sheffield; and the time is 2nd Wednesday 8.00pm. Beginners welcome, tune sheets provided for readers.   
The first attempt will be 9th Feb 2011. Hope to see you there.


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: Paul Davenport
Date: 25 Jan 11 - 05:01 AM

refresh


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: GUEST,MC Fat (at work)
Date: 25 Jan 11 - 05:26 AM

Best of luck with it Paul


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: Paul Davenport
Date: 26 Jan 11 - 05:25 AM

Thanks for that Jim, we've already had some interest so we'll wait and see.
Paul


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: Folkiedave
Date: 27 Jan 11 - 05:39 AM

This might be a good place to list it too. The database has only just begun so it is a bit empty at the moment.


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: Les in Chorlton
Date: 27 Jan 11 - 06:08 AM

Best wishes from all at The Beech, Chorlton, Manchester

L in C#


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: Valmai Goodyear
Date: 27 Jan 11 - 07:00 AM

Excellent scheme!

Valmai (Lewes)


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: Les in Chorlton
Date: 27 Jan 11 - 07:29 AM

"This might be a good place to list it too. The database has only just begun so it is a bit empty at the moment. "

Couldn't get it to work

L in C#


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: Les in Chorlton
Date: 27 Jan 11 - 09:56 AM

Seems Ok now

L in C#


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: greg stephens
Date: 27 Jan 11 - 10:29 AM

Good luck with this Paul, long live triumphant regionalism. We had a mob together the other day playing the Stoke Hornpipe in Stoke as a Happening. People like knowing what is lurking in their past, and bringing it out to see the light of day is wonderful. I have reservations about the use of tunesheets on the night, but that is another argument(with much to be said on both sides).
Here we are

Stoke Hornpipe at the Glebe in Stoke


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: Paul Davenport
Date: 27 Jan 11 - 11:31 AM

'I have reservations about the use of tunesheets on the night,' Yes i have too Greg, trouble is, some of these tunes are in weird keys with strangely unfamiliar patterns. As a simple exam-le, you're familiar with 'Kershaw's Hornpipe' which had no repeated phases, lots of people find it impossible to follow. The Sheffield tunes often exhibit this sort of pattern, coupled with being often in 'flat' keys rather than the usual D/G . Thing is, these are beautiful tunes that deserve to be more widely known, in their own locality if nowhere else.


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: Les in Chorlton
Date: 27 Jan 11 - 11:38 AM

I guess their is 'learning the tune' and 'getting the best out of the tune'.

In learning we can either 'sit by Nellie - digital or human' then 'learn off the dots'

Our sessions would never have been so succesful with out the dots. It also draws in people who probably wouldn't sit in a pub listening because they are not at ease with that, but they learned dots as kids and so can play them.

As for 'getting the best out of the tune'.

I think people need to play together and play for dancing but we are but 'Beginners at The Beech'

Cheers

L in C


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: Paul Davenport
Date: 27 Jan 11 - 02:55 PM

I agree, about learning and 'getting the best'. Thing is Les, it's not as if dots are compulsory. Actually the guys who originated a lot of these tunes were blind so go figure. :-)


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: greg stephens
Date: 27 Jan 11 - 03:12 PM

When I run workshops I give out the sheets at the end as an aide memoire, not the beginning. If it takes an hour to do one tune, well fine. In the hornpipe events we are doing in Stoke, I issue the sheet music via social networks etc beforehand if people wish it, but ask people to learn the tune before they come. I think it is generally very difficult for most people to interact musically when reading dots ( I say "most", not "all"). And reading music is a cheap trick. Useful, but only a trick. It has no relevance whatsoever to playing music. I can read fluently myself, but it's not anything to be proud of!


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: Les in Chorlton
Date: 27 Jan 11 - 03:17 PM

I (64 going on 65) have sung and played guitar since about 17 and have only learned to play from dots in the last 6 years or so and it has opened up the whole world of playing tunes! Best thing I ever did.

Looking at the work of Johnny Adams et al at Salford, some of them at Newcastle and Greg with The Trip to the Lakes has made me realise that the tunes were often kept alive by some tune players who had hand-written tune books of their own.

So our Beginners Tunes at The Beech is following a tradition by having our own tune book. Some but probably not all of us will get beyond it at some point

cheers

L in C#


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: Paul Davenport
Date: 28 Jan 11 - 04:35 AM

It has no relevance whatsoever to playing music. I can read fluently myself, but it's not anything to be proud of!
Wow! Greg, that's a sweeping statement. I was Head of Music in a large comprehensive school. Sadly, despite the best efforts of my staff and myself, only very few students learned to read music. They were justly proud of this achievement. Incidentally, the ability to play by ear is far more rare than the folkie's experience would suggest. This too is something to be proud of.
When I did my post-grad degree I tested the transmission theory. I published a small book of tunes called, 'The Urban Fiddler' - the sources of the tunes were not given but consisted of old and new material including some pieces by Handel and Mozart. The material travelled to a radius of 40 miles in the space of six months. Latterly I have heard my own compositions played by dance teams from some considerably further distance away. Tunes which are only played and transmitted by ear travel less well and are regional rather than nationally known.
The tunebooks of Thompson, Playford, Walsh, Wright etc. probably did more to transmit the tradition than aural sources ever did.
Incidentally, literacy of any kind is of immense importance to our ability to advance in any field.


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: GUEST,Chris P.
Date: 28 Jan 11 - 05:03 PM

"The tunebooks of Thompson, Playford, Walsh, Wright etc. probably did more to transmit the tradition than aural sources ever did."

I agree with that. Being heavily involved in the Village Music Project I know that the vast majority of the tunes in the MSS had previously appeared in print.
However, that doesn't necessarily mean that the tunebooks were read from in the wild. Judging by the condition of most of the surviving MSS, and the illegibility, and the fact that they were mostly written by young people, they seem to have been used as an ititial source for learning at home.
The other possibilty is that the non-survivors were very legible and consequently read to bits. :-)


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: Les in Chorlton
Date: 29 Jan 11 - 04:49 AM

Hi Chris,

a couple of us came to your workshop with Johnny Adams in Ripondden a couple of years ago. It really was a catalyst to get playing and to encourage others to do the same. It also revealed your massive collection of tunes and the role that written music played in keeping the tunes alive for hundreds of years. Clealy tunes players used written music in a way that most singers of old songs mostly didn't, although the role of broadsides has long been recognised.

Much thanks to you both

Les and loads of people at The Beech, Chorlton
About 30 of us will play for our third Ceilidh tonight


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: Paul Davenport
Date: 29 Jan 11 - 05:59 AM

I used to agree with Chris but. What we folkies need to do, is examine contemporary sources. I well remember being gobsmacked in a post-grad seminar when the speaker, whose subject was 'Musical references in the works of Wilkie Collins', delivered the quote (I'm paraphrasing just a little here because it was ten years ago),"The fiddler entered, and having placed his tunebook on the music stand, turned the room into a veritable concert hall". I have also a copy of the publication of Harry Schaefer's tunebooks (Australia 20th century) which indicates that the books were used in performance there too.


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: Les in Chorlton
Date: 29 Jan 11 - 06:29 AM

I guess reading and playing tunes from the music is a lot like reading text, once you can do it well it remains something you can do whenever you want or need to. So good readers don't need to learn the tunes, although many will because the are simple and if playing for dancing many repeats will get you there.

How did/do tune players keep a record of what they can play? I suspect they wrote them down - hence the heritage we have. Some musos could afford to get them published - Playford et al.

We have 82 tunes in our current tune book - grown from twenty, two years ago. Although I have played them all loads of times and produced the ABC/Noteworhty files and the hard copy, when others strike up a tune I cannot always put a name to it, a key or be able to join in. A quick look at the dots and off we go.

Let me lob this in. Some tune players who play for Morris have a similar problem. " Next Dance - Lads a Buncham" - Tune players - how does that go? - Dancers "Oh Dear mother ........." Is that why many dances haev a song at the start?

Tune books have been and will remain one aspect of tune playing.

Best of luck

L in C#


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: Will Fly
Date: 29 Jan 11 - 08:13 AM

Hurray for written tune collections! I've got a reasonably quick ear, and can go to a session (with a mandolin) and get through the evening with a modest degree of success most times. But I also spend a lot of time with tune collections and very often go through the dots to learn unknown tunes. I wouldn't take music along to any of the sessions I go to because that's not the way these particular sessions move along - and playing with other people en masse requires a different discipline than reading the dots.

What has been fascinating recently is going through "The Beggar's Opera" - particularly the tunes - and playing through the versions used by Gay. Some interesting differences from what we do in local sessions crop up - even that old warhorse "Over The Hills And Far Away" has subtly a different melody and feel from what's played here. It's always good to go back to early sources - even if you don't feel inclined to use them.

Anyway - back to topic: good luck with the new session, Paul.


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: Paul Davenport
Date: 30 Jan 11 - 05:12 AM

Wiil, you're right on the ball with the comment about versions and such. I once was involved in an experiment in which I played, 'Off She Goes' solo. I was then followed by a chap from Norfolk who played it. He was then followed by a London based musician playing the same tune. They might as well have been different tunes! Then we all played together…result? 'Off She Goes', quite unremarkable as it went, but considering the disparity in styles and interpretations, pretty amazing.


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: Will Fly
Date: 30 Jan 11 - 05:17 AM

Ah but, Paul - the moment you played the tune together, you'd stopped playing folk and were playing jazz! :-)


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Subject: RE: New Sheffield session - local tunes
From: Paul Davenport
Date: 30 Jan 11 - 02:43 PM

Bollocks Will! :-)


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