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Author Topic: Transposing tunes in D for GC  (Read 494 times)

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LoonBox

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Transposing tunes in D for GC
« on: March 14, 2019, 11:20:24 PM »

I've been transposing some D tunes to play on my GC and I'm wondering if folks have a preference for playing on the inner or outer row?
 My newly acquired Scandinavian music mentor plays on GC and AD so she wants me to learn them on the inner row. I also play fiddle, that perspective makes me think it's easier to play a D tune in G because it maintains the same fingering just down a string, while playing in C would stay more in the same range.
Other thoughts, I use my third and little finger for almost all the bass notes if I'm playing in C and it probably affects my stamina if I'm going at it for a long time. Building strength and endurance but I wonder if that has influenced my leaning more towards the outer row.
Curious to hear the collective wisdom, thanks.
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Tone Dumb Greg

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Re: Transposing tunes in D for GC
« Reply #1 on: March 14, 2019, 11:43:02 PM »

My inclination is to say go along with what she wants you to do and see what comes out of it. You can always do your own thing later if what she wants doesn't work out for you.
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Greg Smith
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Dick Rees

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Re: Transposing tunes in D for GC
« Reply #2 on: March 14, 2019, 11:58:52 PM »

It depends.  I play both fiddle and button box and I'll play it on the inside row, outside row, single row, cross row or once in C, once in G if I feel like it.  Some tunes will sit better one way, some the other. 
In the end I suppose we have preferences as to LH options and row crossing in the RH. 

My advice:  Try it both ways for a few years.  It'll sort itself out.
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boxcall

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Re: Transposing tunes in D for GC
« Reply #3 on: March 15, 2019, 12:33:21 AM »

What key are you transposing the D tunes to? C maybe if
your teacher is wanting you to learn A/D fingering on your G/C or are you trying to learn to play in D on your G/C which would be more of a challenge.
Go with the teacher!
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LoonBox

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Re: Transposing tunes in D for GC
« Reply #4 on: March 15, 2019, 12:53:23 AM »

Thanks for the replies. I'm definitely learning  the tunes in the keys she tells me to, and I'm so excited to be learning from someone!  this came up when I  was working on a new tune from a workshop and I realized my tendencies towards playing on the outer row. Which got me thinking about all the influencing factors, especially choice of instrument. I'll ask her options when we get together next time we play.

A related question then, what tuning would be preferable for fiddle  tunes, DG or
ADassuming you are playing mostly in D? I guess  the answer will probably be that it depends on the music you want to play. 

Yes I'd been playing D tunes  in  C when she gives me one to work on but I realized I transposing d tunes from other sources into G.  I made a tiny attempt at playing in D on my GC but I'm not ready for that challenge yet.
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Tone Dumb Greg

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Re: Transposing tunes in D for GC
« Reply #5 on: March 15, 2019, 01:01:26 AM »

I think she is trying to broaden your musical capabilities rather than say, this tune must be played this way. Like I said, go with it and see what happens. I think she may be a good person to have mentoring you.
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Greg Smith
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Dick Rees

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Re: Transposing tunes in D for GC
« Reply #6 on: March 15, 2019, 01:28:30 AM »

I made a tiny attempt at playing in D on my GC but I'm not ready for that challenge yet.

I play a fair amount of (nominal) D tunes on my G/C.  They're generally in the Mixolydian mode.
The Swedish tune called "Gråtvalsen" (The Crying Waltz) was one of the first.  Tunes which use both the major and minor thirds and the flatted seventh work particularly well.  That means a lot of "archaic" spelmanslåtar pitched in D can work on the G/C.

If you're ever in Duluth, MN, send me a PM and I'll run through them for you. 
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folkloristmark

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Re: Transposing tunes in D for GC
« Reply #7 on: March 15, 2019, 09:06:38 AM »

You might not like this but if you have learnt a fiddle tune in G then if you tune the fiddle up a tone as did the likes of english fiddle player lemmy brazil and many others you dont need to change fingering,Its now A, this does assume a decent fiddle and I know many very good fiddle payers who are horrified of retuning violins. You cant retune the box but you can change it.This gives a wide range of options when playing with others and the keys are not common.If using alternative fingering as on a box then change the fiddle for a viola and the overlaps are multiplied with and without alternative fingerings .Your teacher might want you to stick with her method as a disciplined approach but you can play around when out of school.
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Theo

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Re: Transposing tunes in D for GC
« Reply #8 on: March 15, 2019, 09:21:23 AM »

I know hordes of fiddle players but I don’t know a single one who would tune up to play in A.  For most of them A is their favourite key.
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Theo Gibb - Gateshead UK

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Squeaky Pete

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Re: Transposing tunes in D for GC
« Reply #9 on: March 15, 2019, 09:37:06 AM »

A few fiddle players used to carry a spare fiddle tuned down a tone so they could play with Northumbrian pipers like me. This was in the days before concert pitch chanters became common.
Mel and I worked through the entire Vickers tunes manuscript like this in the 70s.
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Theo

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Re: Transposing tunes in D for GC
« Reply #10 on: March 15, 2019, 09:45:54 AM »

That still happens at a Session I attend where there are several pipers.  I take a CF box.  Pipes sound so much better in F than G!
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Theo Gibb - Gateshead UK

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Rees

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Re: Transposing tunes in D for GC
« Reply #11 on: March 15, 2019, 11:49:05 AM »

Cajun fiddlers also tune down a tone as most Cajun accordions are in C.
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Theo

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Re: Transposing tunes in D for GC
« Reply #12 on: March 15, 2019, 11:57:03 AM »

I’m sure tuning down is less risky to the fiddle and strings than tuning up by a whole tone. I can see E strings snapping!
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Theo Gibb - Gateshead UK

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LoonBox

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Re: Transposing tunes in D for GC
« Reply #13 on: March 15, 2019, 12:31:18 PM »

It depends.  I play both fiddle and button box and I'll play it on the inside row, outside row, single row, cross row or once in C, once in G if I feel like it.  Some tunes will sit better one way, some the other. 
In the end I suppose we have preferences as to LH options and row crossing in the RH. 

My advice:  Try it both ways for a few years.  It'll sort itself out.

Wow, I  suppose I've got my work cut out if I'm to aspire to that level of playing! It sounds like good practice to play things different ways and get more comfortable on the instrument. 

I've got family up in Ashland, WI and I'm in the Twin cities so traveling through Duluth happens every few months.  I'd love to catch your Sunday brunch show some month and have a chance to meet you. Thanks for the advice and encouragement!
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