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Author Topic: The Northern Fiddler abc's posted online  (Read 2868 times)

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Christopher K.

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The Northern Fiddler abc's posted online
« on: November 21, 2012, 06:14:57 AM »

Bill Black has posted an abc transcription of The Northern Fiddler, a terrific book of tunes that has been out of print for quite some time. I had this sent to me as an inter-library loan, twice. Now it is much easier to copy and paste it into my computer.

Thanks, Bill.

Link is here.

Pete Dunk

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Re: The Northern Fiddler abc's posted online
« Reply #1 on: November 22, 2012, 12:43:30 AM »

What a shame it isn't straight ABC file!  :o
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Re: The Northern Fiddler abc's posted online
« Reply #2 on: November 22, 2012, 08:26:51 AM »

What a shame it isn't straight ABC file!  :o

It's only a minute's work to copy and paste that page to a text file and take out the NOTATION FILE and MIDI FILE links (possibly all at once by a carefully crafted text editor macro). And put a %%begintext and %%endtext around the preamble at the top.
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Re: The Northern Fiddler abc's posted online
« Reply #3 on: November 22, 2012, 08:59:31 AM »

What a shame it isn't straight ABC file!  :o

It's only a minute's work to copy and paste that page to a text file and take out the NOTATION FILE and MIDI FILE links (possibly all at once by a carefully crafted text editor macro). And put a %%begintext and %%endtext around the preamble at the top.

That's exactly what I did.  (:)
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xgx

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Re: The Northern Fiddler abc's posted online
« Reply #4 on: November 22, 2012, 09:30:20 AM »

Is it not straight ABC?
I copied from the page and into tune-o-tron without a problem ...have I missed something?
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Graham

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Re: The Northern Fiddler abc's posted online
« Reply #5 on: November 22, 2012, 12:06:48 PM »

Is it not straight ABC?

Only in the sense that the entire page has some lines which aren't ABC code

But as a tune must end with an empty line, and a new tune must start with an X: header, it's quite possible that typical ABC interpreters ignore the stuff in between.

Also the page itself is obviously html formatted, so downloading it will not make nice ABC, but copying/pasting to a plain text editor will transfer the text only without the formatting info.
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tekyinblack

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Re: The Northern Fiddler abc's posted online
« Reply #6 on: November 22, 2012, 12:17:29 PM »

I used this link

many thanks for this regardless of the fun we're having with it, we're about to have more!

http://www.capeirish.com/webabc/collections/n-fiddler/nf-tunes.txt
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syale

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Re: The Northern Fiddler abc's posted online
« Reply #7 on: November 22, 2012, 12:46:05 PM »

I am using ABC Editor and MEFA to play the tunes and the tempo seems really fast. Is it my software?
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Re: The Northern Fiddler abc's posted online
« Reply #8 on: November 22, 2012, 02:26:38 PM »

I am using ABC Editor and MEFA to play the tunes and the tempo seems really fast. Is it my software?
I don't think it's your software. Most of the Q: (tempo) fields appear to be set very high - e.g. a reel like "Irish Stew" (X:3067) has a Q: value of 360. With the default note length set at L:1/8 i.e. eighth-notes, quavers, this means that there with be 360 quavers per minute, or 180 crotchets (quarter notes) per minute. That is really very fast indeed, even for exuberant Irish sessions!  :Ph

It is better ABC syntax to actually specify the note length in the Q: field. E.g. Q:1/4=90 will set the tempo to 90 crotchets per minute regardless of the L: field, which is a much more realistic tempo for a reel.
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Re: The Northern Fiddler abc's posted online
« Reply #9 on: November 22, 2012, 03:10:12 PM »

Is it not straight ABC?
Only in the sense that the entire page has some lines which aren't ABC code

Blissfully unaware of all that 'cos I only copied the ABC bit ... life can get over complicated at times ;D
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Stiamh

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Re: The Northern Fiddler abc's posted online
« Reply #10 on: November 22, 2012, 04:07:35 PM »

Those of you who are enthusiastically downloading this file and are not familiar with The Northern Fiddler, its history and its critical reception, you might want to do a bit of research before learning the tunes.

In my opinion it is a wonderful book and I foolishly neglected to buy a copy while it was in print. (Last time I looked, insane prices were being asked for second-hand copies.) The tunes were all transcribed from the fiddlers that are documented in the book. However some of the settings are uncommon, not to say highly idiosyncratic, and even the accuracy of the transcriptions has been called into question, based on recordings of some of the better-known sources (such as John Doherty).

I would regard the collection as a very interesting historical document - as much if not more for the stories and photographs and drawings as for the tune settings. I wouldn't advise people to learn the tunes unless they have a particular interest in old styles of fiddling in the counties covered, or want to learn settings that few if any people you are likely to meet will know. Even if that were my case, I'd want to hear recordings of the fiddlers in question if possible.

All this assuming of course that Bill Black faithfully transcribed the tunes as printed in the book. (And if he didn't, he should be roundly castigated.)
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