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Question about Irish vs English fiddling

GUEST,Peter Laban 20 Sep 21 - 05:28 PM
GUEST,Peter Laban 20 Sep 21 - 05:14 PM
The Sandman 20 Sep 21 - 04:06 PM
GUEST,Peter Laban 20 Sep 21 - 03:20 PM
Georgiansilver 20 Sep 21 - 02:08 PM
The Sandman 20 Sep 21 - 01:51 PM
matt milton 20 Sep 21 - 08:57 AM
The Sandman 20 Sep 21 - 08:41 AM
Johnny J 20 Sep 21 - 07:58 AM
GUEST 20 Sep 21 - 07:51 AM
The Sandman 20 Sep 21 - 07:42 AM
matt milton 20 Sep 21 - 06:06 AM
matt milton 20 Sep 21 - 05:57 AM
matt milton 20 Sep 21 - 05:55 AM
The Sandman 20 Sep 21 - 02:19 AM
Stilly River Sage 20 Sep 21 - 12:32 AM
GUEST 19 Sep 21 - 11:12 PM
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Subject: RE: Question about Irish vs English fiddling
From: GUEST,Peter Laban
Date: 20 Sep 21 - 05:28 PM

Senior groups Chesil competition:

https://comhaltas.ie/music/detail/comhaltaslive_526_7ceoltoiri_tireragh/


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Subject: RE: Question about Irish vs English fiddling
From: GUEST,Peter Laban
Date: 20 Sep 21 - 05:14 PM

No, it applies only, as it clearly states, to duet and trio competitions. Not to the grupa cheoil. Or ceiliband competitions, for that matter.


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Subject: RE: Question about Irish vs English fiddling
From: The Sandman
Date: 20 Sep 21 - 04:06 PM

12 years ago this was the situation as regards CCE,rule no. 18
” In competitions for duets and trios, all members must at all times play the melody of the tune” Peter Laban has that rule been changed?


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Subject: RE: Question about Irish vs English fiddling
From: GUEST,Peter Laban
Date: 20 Sep 21 - 03:20 PM

Compacts 'grupa cheoil' competitions bristle with groups harmonising. There is no blanket ban on it. It's about context.


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Subject: RE: Question about Irish vs English fiddling
From: Georgiansilver
Date: 20 Sep 21 - 02:08 PM

For me I say who cares anyway?? English or Irish.... I happily listen to it all......


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Subject: RE: Question about Irish vs English fiddling
From: The Sandman
Date: 20 Sep 21 - 01:51 PM

CCE, have a ridiculous rule which discourages harmonies in their group competitions, but no one in the real world outside of competitions takes much notice of their rules


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Subject: RE: Question about Irish vs English fiddling
From: matt milton
Date: 20 Sep 21 - 08:57 AM

The ornament point occurred to me too, but I think it was just unfortunate choice of words. Think when the original poster said 'straight' they weren't thinking of ornamentation questions so much as harmony.


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Subject: RE: Question about Irish vs English fiddling
From: The Sandman
Date: 20 Sep 21 - 08:41 AM

yes, you are correct. johnny j. your thoughts had also occurred to me


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Subject: RE: Question about Irish vs English fiddling
From: Johnny J
Date: 20 Sep 21 - 07:58 AM

Sorry, the above post was mine.


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Subject: RE: Question about Irish vs English fiddling
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Sep 21 - 07:51 AM

"Irish groups are more likely to play their fiddle tunes straight"

Harmonies aside, I don't think that statement is accurate. Most fiddlers have very individual styles which will also vary from region to region. So, there will inevitably be many variations and ornaments.
Probably even more prevalent with Irish fiddling than in England.


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Subject: RE: Question about Irish vs English fiddling
From: The Sandman
Date: 20 Sep 21 - 07:42 AM

how do you define harmony, northumbrian pipes use a drone , that is technically a harmony?
the high level ranters played northumbrian tunes using a guitar and a piano accordion


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Subject: RE: Question about Irish vs English fiddling
From: matt milton
Date: 20 Sep 21 - 06:06 AM

Seeing as this thread is predominantly about fiddling, I would check out historic recordings of Northumbrian fiddlers such as Ned Pearson, Adam Gray and Geordie Armstrong on Spotify.

And then listen to Andrew Cadie, a young contemporary exponent of the same tradition: https://music.apple.com/gb/album/half-witted-merry-mad-northumbrian-fiddle-music-from/1540246526

Great examples of solo fiddle playing.


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Subject: RE: Question about Irish vs English fiddling
From: matt milton
Date: 20 Sep 21 - 05:57 AM

(Above, when I said 'unison playing' that's probably not the best way of putting it - all I meant was everybody playing the same tune rather than accompanying or harmonising)


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Subject: RE: Question about Irish vs English fiddling
From: matt milton
Date: 20 Sep 21 - 05:55 AM

I'd say it totally depends on which group you're listening to. Overall, I wouldn't say that there's a national tendency more towards one than the other.

When it comes to 'pure drop' playing - eg sessions in pubs - I doubt you'd hear much more harmonising at an English tunes session than at an Irish.

That said, something that muddies the waters here is that there's a hell of a lot more recordings of Irish traditional music than English.

So there's loads more recordings - both field recordings and studio recordings - of solo performers, duo performers and small group performers, across different decades and in different contexts.

Whereas with English music there's a disproportionate amount of 'contemporary' traditional music, relative to what came before. In Irish music, for every instance of The Chieftains or The Gloaming or Martin Hayes' groups you have a historic plethora of recordings of unison tune playing (with minimal harmony).

English music never really had that. With notable exceptions, English music - in terms of recordings anyway - sort of leaps straight from at-home recordings of Stephen Baldwin or Jinky Wells to the (not especially English) playing of Dave Swarbrick in various group formations; and the harmony-based arrangements of Wood & Cutting, English Acoustic Collective, Spiers & Boden, Tom Kitching and numerous others.

The contemporary fiddlers I just mentioned have their Irish equivalents - it's certainly not just an English thing to present tunes in harmony based group arrangements. But the big difference is that recorded Irish music is vast enough to have had many decades of different musicians so you get all the 'pure drop' stuff as well as the highly arranged stuff; plus all the nodal points along the way like piano accompaniment to Michael Coleman, bouzouki accompaniment (from Alec Finn) to Frankie Gavin etc


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Subject: RE: Question about Irish vs English fiddling
From: The Sandman
Date: 20 Sep 21 - 02:19 AM

1.Perhaps you just have not listened to irish group who use harmony, the use of the bouzouki, as a harmony instrument is pretty common in the last thirty yeqrs in irish music.+
i would say it is the specific groups.
the use of the piano, providing harmony and disharmony in irish ceili bands has been going for over 80 years. try listening to some of Michael Colemans piano players or so called accompanists


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Subject: RE: Question about Irish vs English fiddling
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 20 Sep 21 - 12:32 AM

Unnamed GUEST, please give yourself a moniker and stick with it when you post here, if you aren't going to join. Thanks.


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Subject: Question about Irish vs English fiddling
From: GUEST
Date: 19 Sep 21 - 11:12 PM

I've noticed that in the trad music I listen to, Irish groups are more likely to play their fiddle tunes straight, without any harmonizations, whereas English groups are more likely to add harmony and counterpoint lines. Is this a common difference between the two styles? Or is it just the specific groups I listen to?


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