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Waltz tunes with no repeats

Phil Edwards 15 Apr 13 - 11:30 AM
G-Force 15 Apr 13 - 12:31 PM
Phil Edwards 15 Apr 13 - 01:12 PM
Phil Edwards 16 Apr 13 - 08:38 AM
greg stephens 16 Apr 13 - 09:10 AM
treewind 16 Apr 13 - 10:40 AM
Phil Edwards 16 Apr 13 - 02:48 PM
Phil Edwards 16 Apr 13 - 03:07 PM
greg stephens 16 Apr 13 - 03:53 PM
greg stephens 16 Apr 13 - 04:01 PM
greg stephens 16 Apr 13 - 04:09 PM
Tootler 16 Apr 13 - 06:04 PM
Mo the caller 16 Apr 13 - 06:08 PM
Phil Edwards 17 Apr 13 - 03:45 AM
greg stephens 17 Apr 13 - 05:14 AM
Marje 17 Apr 13 - 07:11 AM
Mo the caller 17 Apr 13 - 08:25 AM
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Subject: Waltz tunes with no repeats
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 15 Apr 13 - 11:30 AM

In the session/band which I'm rather loosely involved with, we tend to pair The Shepherd's Wife with The Man in the Moon, and the Cumberland Waltz with the Westmorland ditto.

I'm currently mostly practising without music, and I can never remember which ones have repeats and which are straight through. On checking I found that we play TSW and Cumberland straight through - but I also found that other people play Cumberland with repeats.

What do tune-players here do with those two tunes? And are there many other straight-through waltz tunes I need to watch out for? (Among the relative standards, that is - I'm sure there are a lot of straight-through waltz tunes out there, along with a lot of every other kind of tune.)


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Subject: RE: Waltz tunes with no repeats
From: G-Force
Date: 15 Apr 13 - 12:31 PM

Many dances in 3/4 time are only 16 bars long. Others may be 32 or other length.

In sessions, people tend to play 32 bar length. However, if the A and B parts consist of repeated 4 bar sections, as often happens, then you will usually end up with a 16 bar tune.

I think that's what tends to happen.


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Subject: RE: Waltz tunes with no repeats
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 15 Apr 13 - 01:12 PM

Cumberland Waltz, Westmorland ditto and the Shepherd's Wife are all 32 bars long, or 2x16 if you break them into A and B. So that doesn't explain what's going on here.

The odd one out is The Man in the Moon: 8 bars A, 16 bars B - and the B part includes a repeat of the A, so when you play AABB you're effectively playing AABABA.


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Subject: RE: Waltz tunes with no repeats
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 16 Apr 13 - 08:38 AM

Bump (two three)

Somebody must have a view on this surely? Somebody must play the Cumberland Waltz from time to time, at least. Where is everyone?


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Subject: RE: Waltz tunes with no repeats
From: greg stephens
Date: 16 Apr 13 - 09:10 AM

I play the Cumberland Waltz without repeats, but others do it differently. Matter of personal choice. Ditto Westmoreland.I will go and check recordings and get back to you on this.


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Subject: RE: Waltz tunes with no repeats
From: treewind
Date: 16 Apr 13 - 10:40 AM

If you play in a band, you need to count the bars and figure out what you have to do to make the tune the right length in bars to fit the dance. If it needs 32 bar waltzes, you make it 32 bars...

Cumberland Waltz has built-in repeats - the A music is 8 bars, followed by 8 more bars which are identical apart from the last two. The B music is similar. That makes 32 bars, which is the right length for most waltz dances. You might write it out as 16 bars per half of the tune, or as 8 bars with repeats and a "1st time" and "2nd time" ending.

Actually there are some 16 bar dances, and with tunes like the Cumberland you end up playing once though the tune for twice through the dance.

With The Man in The Moon, you play AABA (where A and B are both 8 bars of music) and it's 32 bars too. What's the problem?


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Subject: RE: Waltz tunes with no repeats
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 16 Apr 13 - 02:48 PM

No problem necessarily, I'm just curious. Although it does sound as if we've been playing TMITM wrong, as we play an 8-bar A twice & a 16-bar B twice - effectively AABABA.

Thanks for pointing out the 8-bar almost-repeat in Cumberland A & B - The Shepherd's Wife does something similar, although there's more variation in the B part. Westmorland doesn't, but the history of that tune is a bit different - why, some might say it's not even a waltz (hi Greg!).


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Subject: RE: Waltz tunes with no repeats
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 16 Apr 13 - 03:07 PM

Just noticed that Planxty Irwin has a similar AABA 'built-in repeat' structure - that would probably be better played straight through, instead of playing what's effectively AAAABABA. Planxty Fanny Power, on the other hand, just has two distinct 16-bar parts.


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Subject: RE: Waltz tunes with no repeats
From: greg stephens
Date: 16 Apr 13 - 03:53 PM

Some might indeed say Westmoreland is not a waltz. It wasn't till I decreed it was, in 1979.


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Subject: RE: Waltz tunes with no repeats
From: greg stephens
Date: 16 Apr 13 - 04:01 PM

Here is a demonstration of the Cumberland Waltz played without repeats, in the Prince of Wales, Foxfield, Cumbria. (Though not in Cumberland, Foxfield was in Lancashire in the good old days). The tune played second is Miss Dillon's Waltz. Come and join us for a few tunes everyone, we will be in the Prince of Wales on September 14,(2013). It's right opposite the station, as you will see in the video.

Cumberland Waltz in Foxfield


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Subject: RE: Waltz tunes with no repeats
From: greg stephens
Date: 16 Apr 13 - 04:09 PM

Can't seem to locate a Youtube of Westmoreland. I have had a listen to my own record of it, and we certainly played it with repeats on that. Whether we always do it that way I couldn't say. It doen't matter really, we never use it for one of those structured waltz type things. We just play it for a last waltz, grab your partner and waltz round the floor.


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Subject: RE: Waltz tunes with no repeats
From: Tootler
Date: 16 Apr 13 - 06:04 PM

Westmorland isn't a waltz. It dates from the 17th century before the waltz made its appearance. In Playford, it was notated in 6/4 time and later, in the 18th century it was notated in 6/8 time: ie half the note values from Playford. That means that, strictly speaking, it should be played two in a bar.

That said, it is commonly played with a waltz feel. I first heard it played by the York Waits and they played it in that way and I followed them.

I always play it with repeats and always refer to just as "Westmoreland".


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Subject: RE: Waltz tunes with no repeats
From: Mo the caller
Date: 16 Apr 13 - 06:08 PM

The David Oliver book of session tunes for beginners writes Margaret's Waltz with repeat signs after the 8 bar A and the 16 bar B. Which is a pity, because it was written to go with a 32 bar dance so for that it should be played AAB.
Though how you play tunes in sessions depends who starts them (and who else takes them over) - we never play the Morris tunes with 3 Bs which you might need for dancing.

A lot of the time 16 bar dances in waltz time (e.g. St Bernard, Veleta) are danced to longer tunes. But if I'm calling the Circle Waltz (32 bars)I want a tune that is 32 bars not a 16 bar tune played twice, since the first half of the dance has a 4 bar sequence danced 4 times (with a new partner each time), then the change to the B music signals "keep this partner and..."


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Subject: RE: Waltz tunes with no repeats
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 17 Apr 13 - 03:45 AM

Interesting. What seems to be emerging is that

- 32 bars, or 2x16 bars, is a good length for a structured dance
-- although 2x32 is fine for 'last waltz' type dances, or for playing without dancers

- you can get to 32 by playing a 2x8-bar tune AABB, or by playing a 2x16-bar tune straight through

- a lot of 2x16-bar tunes have built-in repeats, so that when you play them straight through you are effectively playing 8-bar sections, AABB or AABA

Then (getting away from waltzes) there are tunes like Speed the Plough which repeat in 4-bar sections with small variations, so AABB is more like AAAABBBB, and tunes like Black Joke which have a 4-bar A and 8-bar B - and presumably should be played AAB or AAAABB... and on it goes. Fascinating stuff


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Subject: RE: Waltz tunes with no repeats
From: greg stephens
Date: 17 Apr 13 - 05:14 AM

Tootler makes a statement "Westmorland isn't a waltz". This sort of thing can be easily said, but is actually fairly meaningless. Surely a waltz is a tune played for dancing waltzes to. Numerous tunes in 3 time(or 6 time),that date from way before the introduction of the waltz as a popular dance, are now used for waltzes. Listen to any recordings of traditional dance bands and you will see this. Westmoreland,Believe Me if All Those Endearing Young Charms,Sky Boat Song,Rosin the Beau, etc etc the list is endless.And as any trad player knows, if you're short of a waltz, play a jig slowly.


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Subject: RE: Waltz tunes with no repeats
From: Marje
Date: 17 Apr 13 - 07:11 AM

Quite a few waltzes (and some non-waltz tunes too) have that pattern where the B part is twice the length of the A (like The Man in the Moon), often because it includes a reprise of the A music. If As and Bs are played twice, it may end up the wrong length for a particular dance, but also if it's played at a session, it can make the tune seem to go on forever, because waltzes are slower and take longer to play than fast tunes. That's one reason why, even at a session where dancing isn't an issue, some players stick to AAB for such waltzes.
Having said that, I'd play the Cumberland Waltz with repeats.

Marje


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Subject: RE: Waltz tunes with no repeats
From: Mo the caller
Date: 17 Apr 13 - 08:25 AM

Phil said
".... and tunes like Black Joke which have a 4-bar A and 8-bar B - and presumably should be played AAB or AAAABB... and on it goes. Fascinating stuff "

But it depends on the dance. Here is Earl of Stamford dancing a stick dance with a short figure (different each time) repeated, and a longer chorus repeated. So played AABB (and there is an extra 2 bars of stick clashing at the end of each phrase - the As are 6 and the Bs 10 so you'd be hard put to make a 32 bar tune.)Also Travelling Morrice dancing the Adderbury hankie version and Ilmington performing a clapping dance, same structure (with a pause in the chorus).

Some of the Morris dances have a part where two dancers on a diagonal dance together, then the second corners do the same, then the middle couple repeat e.g.Deer Creek dancing Banbury Bill so need AABBB
Or you might have some fancy work where part of the B music is played at half speed (the 'slows') so that the dancers can leap higher or get down lower.


A lot of the Playford tunes have a short A and a long B and are usually danced AABB, though the version of Jamaica we dance (and the song that is sung to that tune) needs AAB.
Near downfall of a caller - my Country Dance Tunes book (Cecil Sharp) had the short As printed twice to make an 8 bar phrase. So I asked the Forlorn hope to play various dances "24 bars, one A two Bs" The version they were playing from had 4 bar As so it didn't add up, and fortunately they noticed that.


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