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get yourself a present:English Country Dance Tunes

Mo the caller 13 Nov 15 - 07:37 AM
Mo the caller 13 Nov 15 - 07:31 AM
Brian Peters 13 Nov 15 - 07:02 AM
GUEST,leeneia 12 Nov 15 - 06:00 PM
CupOfTea 12 Nov 15 - 03:31 PM
GUEST,leeneia 11 Nov 15 - 04:42 PM
Brian Peters 11 Nov 15 - 02:11 PM
Marje 11 Nov 15 - 12:55 PM
GUEST,CJB 11 Nov 15 - 12:38 PM
GUEST,leeneia 11 Nov 15 - 10:41 AM
GUEST,leeneia 11 Nov 15 - 10:36 AM
bubblyrat 11 Nov 15 - 07:44 AM
AllisonA(Animaterra) 10 Nov 15 - 05:50 PM
AllisonA(Animaterra) 10 Nov 15 - 05:49 PM
CupOfTea 10 Nov 15 - 05:04 PM
GUEST,leeneia 10 Nov 15 - 12:18 PM
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Subject: RE: get yourself a present:English Country Dance Tunes
From: Mo the caller
Date: 13 Nov 15 - 07:37 AM

And the slower the hornpipe the higher you have to hop (to stay off the ground long enough)

Contra is a fast smooth walk (not a plod, and very musical)
Playford can use various steps, a slow stately (but musical and lively) walk; a skip or double step; or sometimes a hornpipe double step. And in Jane Austin's time they did allsorts of fancy footwork.


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Subject: RE: get yourself a present:English Country Dance Tunes
From: Mo the caller
Date: 13 Nov 15 - 07:31 AM

Many of Colin Hume's tunes are on his website. But I couldn't find Elizabeth, maybe because it's in a published in Dances with a Difference 4
Ceilidh bands play umpdty dumpty music at a much slower speed than Contra. You couldn't walk to it. You have to bounce.


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Subject: RE: get yourself a present:English Country Dance Tunes
From: Brian Peters
Date: 13 Nov 15 - 07:02 AM

Thanks, Cup of Tea, good explanation.

As far as contradance repertoire is concerned, I had the pleasure in Pittsburgh a couple of years ago to lead a scratch band with a couple of excellent local musicians for their regular contra. We played a repertoire of entirely English dance music (including several tunes of mine), and it worked out just fine. Old English tune books are full of hornpipes, written without dotting, that are really good for dancing when played pretty much as reels as COT suggests.


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Subject: RE: get yourself a present:English Country Dance Tunes
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 12 Nov 15 - 06:00 PM

I didn't realize that there was a tradition of doing a couples waltz to end the evening until one night the pianist looked at me with wild eyes and said, "Name a waltz for the last dance!"

Years before I had done Duke of Kent's at a workshop in North Carolina, so I said "Duke of Kent's," praying that it was in the book. It was. (There are two different Duke of Kent's Waltzes, so you have to be careful about this.)

Since then I have pencilled the names of waltzes within on the inside covers of the Barnes books in case of emergency.


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Subject: RE: get yourself a present:English Country Dance Tunes
From: CupOfTea
Date: 12 Nov 15 - 03:31 PM

In the US, what we classify as "Emglish Country Dance" is the whole genre that starts with Playford, and goes to the recently composed dances/ tunes that use the same moves. The pairing of dance to tunes is a key component of most of these. Though it can be more stately than contra dance, it needn't be any less aerobic than contra in some of the dances.

American contradance uses a tune repertoire that pulls from English, Irish, Scottish, Quebequois, southern Appalachian old time, and occasionally farther afield. The band will do a set of one sort of tunes that they think will go well - jigs, reels, polkas, hornpipes played like reels. Seldom is a tune wedded to a particular dance.

I danced ECD and contra for over 20 years, and have played both for over a dozen years when my dancing capibility was done (To answer Leenia - Autoharp on rhythm and Anglo concertina on melody) In the contra dance I play in, several of the end- of- the- evening waltzes we play come from the ECD repertoire ( Flowers of the thorn, Margaret's waltz). Several other musicians play both, but the thing that makes the ECD repertoire distinct is the absolute passion we have for this music. Peter Barnes has provided great fuel for this passion in his splendid books.

So, um, what I umpdty dumpty music? Am I guilty of it when we play "Off She Goes" for a contra?

Joanne in Cleveland


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Subject: RE: get yourself a present:English Country Dance Tunes
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 11 Nov 15 - 04:42 PM

We do both umpty-pumpty and whispey-lilty, according to the music and our mood. It's not all Playford; I'm currently learning a piece from 1991.


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Subject: RE: get yourself a present:English Country Dance Tunes
From: Brian Peters
Date: 11 Nov 15 - 02:11 PM

"I'm not at all sure that umpty dumpty English ceilidh bands can play in the whispey, liltey, style beloved of CDSS enthusiasts."

Are you getting confused by the ambiguity in the usage on either side of the Atlantic, of the term 'English Country Dance'? Here in England this was adopted (I think by Old Swan Band and their followers) as a local alternative to the terms 'ceilidh' (Irish) and 'barn dance' (American). However in North America it seems to mean 'Playford' - which does generally demand a less rumbustuous style. However, if you listen to good American contradance bands, they are as lively as any English dance band and neither 'whispey' or 'liltey' - whether the musicians belong to CDSS or not.


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Subject: RE: get yourself a present:English Country Dance Tunes
From: Marje
Date: 11 Nov 15 - 12:55 PM

I'm in the UK and was given this book (the blue book, which I think is now Book 1) by a friend who lives in the US. It's a terrific source of tunes, including many older English ones e.g. Playford) that don't appear in popular collections. And you can play them as umptily-dumptily as you like, there's no small print saying you have to play ploddingly!
I don't know where you can get it, but it deserves to be better known in the UK.
Marje


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Subject: RE: get yourself a present:English Country Dance Tunes
From: GUEST,CJB
Date: 11 Nov 15 - 12:38 PM

Are the Barnes books available in the UK? And from what source and at what price?

And with all due respect I'm not at all sure that umpty dumpty English ceilidh bands can play in the whispey, liltey, style beloved of CDSS enthusiasts.

CJB


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Subject: RE: get yourself a present:English Country Dance Tunes
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 11 Nov 15 - 10:41 AM

It's nice to hear that others are playing. CupofTea and Bubblyrat, what instruments do you play? I do recorder and percussion.

Now to look for 'Wood Duck.'


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Subject: RE: get yourself a present:English Country Dance Tunes
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 11 Nov 15 - 10:36 AM


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Subject: RE: get yourself a present:English Country Dance Tunes
From: bubblyrat
Date: 11 Nov 15 - 07:44 AM

There's always Nick Barber ; and The Hardy Manuscript, of course.


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Subject: RE: get yourself a present:English Country Dance Tunes
From: AllisonA(Animaterra)
Date: 10 Nov 15 - 05:50 PM

For those many of you who may know Peter, you might want to know that his father just died last week. I think Peter could use some loving mojo.


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Subject: RE: get yourself a present:English Country Dance Tunes
From: AllisonA(Animaterra)
Date: 10 Nov 15 - 05:49 PM

AND they're available in ebook form, thru iTunes. Not only are Peter Barne's books wonderful (he has others ), he is a brilliant, funny, kind guy. I'm honored to call him friend.


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Subject: RE: get yourself a present
From: CupOfTea
Date: 10 Nov 15 - 05:04 PM

Elizabeth is indeed a lovely waltz, and any book by Peter Barnes is well worth having. I'm on my second copy of Volume 1 (the blue book) which has more music in it than the original that I wore out. We're doing lots of dances out of Book 2 (the red book). He's done a couple other books as well A Little Couple Dancemusik with waltzes, polkas, schottishes, tangos and even more exotic danceability, and his treatise on improvising: The Complete Vamper.

To go WITH the sheet music, any recording that Bare Necessities (Where Peter is 1/4 the band) has done of English Country Dance music, mostly done for CDSS, is also well worth having (I'm particularly fond of Volume 12 - A Playford Ball: Historical Dances from England). Their brilliance in weaving in and out of each other is the most astonishingly joyous dance music to move your body and soul to.

So nearly universal is his influence in providing music for ECD bands, that newer compositions tend to be referenced as "NIB" - Not In Barnes.

If you like Elizabeth, try Wood Duck

Joanne In Cleveland
member of Toad in the Hole Second Friday English Country dance band


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Subject: get yourself a present
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 10 Nov 15 - 12:18 PM

Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat, and the musical instruments may be sitting around the house unused. So talk to Santa about Peter Barnes' books, "English Country Dance Tunes, volume one and two". That is, if you can read music.

These nice, thick books contain many good tunes, both old and new. Plus chords. I've been playing for country dancers recently, and I'm impressed by how much fine music is to be found in them.

Right now I'm working on a beautiful modern waltz called "Elizabeth. " (Colin Hume, 1991)

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


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