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Author Topic: One row tunes  (Read 4973 times)

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Steve_freereeder

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Re: One row tunes
« Reply #80 on: February 14, 2020, 11:19:42 AM »

Could be wrong, Steve - my tinnitus is lively at the moment, but the downward scales definitely had an odd feel about them - could you check and see if there aren't G# in those? Or is it just some weird tuning issues?
Just listened again. If those are G#s in the downward scales, then I'm losing the plot.
Pete,
I've listened again (several times) and I still think there are no G#s in the descending scales in the B-music. I agee that the intonation isn't pure by ET electronic standards but I'm certain the meaning is clear. I have just tried playing the tune with and without G#s. Playing the descending scales in A major with G#s definitely sounds wrong in this instance.
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Steve_freereeder

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Re: One row tunes
« Reply #81 on: February 14, 2020, 12:15:32 PM »

Here's my transcription of 'Banks of Kale Water' based on Tom Hughes' recording. I've been playing this on my one-row in D. It's perfectly possible, although there are a couple of slightly awkward hand position shifts needed. I'll try to post a recording sometime soon. (Cue gasps as I hardly ever post any recordings these days...  :o)
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Tone Dumb Greg

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Re: One row tunes
« Reply #82 on: February 14, 2020, 12:30:08 PM »

 :P :P :P
!!!GASP!!!

Thanks, Steve.
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Greg Smith
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Alan Pittwood

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Re: One row tunes
« Reply #83 on: February 14, 2020, 02:33:53 PM »

Lovely video here of Katie Howson, Oscar Woods and Reg Reader (dulcimer) playing one of Oscar's tunes 'Waltzing over the Water'. This is a great tune for one-row melodeons.
Psst: It's in 'Before the Night Was Out'

The tune is, perhaps, more widely known as the "Italian" waltz, as it was track 7 on English country music from East Anglia Topic Records 12TS229 (1973)
and this is the name that is used in Before the night was out . . tune no.59 on page 76: the notes also confirm Waltzing over the Water and Oscar's waltz as local,  Suffolk, names.

It is Waltzing over the Water on The pigeon on the gate  melodeon players from East Anglia Veteran [2 cassettes] (1997) and Veteran VTDC11CD [2 CD] (2008)

It is The Italian Waltz as track 4 on Rig-a-jg-jig dance music of the South of England The Voice of the People volume 9 Topic Records TSCD659 (1998)
« Last Edit: February 14, 2020, 02:36:30 PM by Alan Pittwood »
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Re: One row tunes
« Reply #84 on: February 14, 2020, 02:42:03 PM »

I've listened again (several times) and I still think there are no G#s in the descending scales in the B-music. I agee that the intonation isn't pure by ET electronic standards but I'm certain the meaning is clear. I have just tried playing the tune with and without G#s. Playing the descending scales in A major with G#s definitely sounds wrong in this instance.

That's interesting. When I listened it seemed clear to me that there were G#s in those scales. I was puzzled about why we might be perceiving this differently.

So I grabbed the clip as an MP3 and put it into Transcribe, isolated that note, and switched on "View Spectrum". It shows the note in question as being "Ab - 40 cents". Meaning about half way between a G and a G-sharp, verging a bit towards G-sharp side.

I checked some other notes too, as it's the relative pitch that matters. Results were a bit variable but mostly the notes were a bit under (A=440) pitch, which think strengthens the case for interpreting this note as a G-sharp.

However, my overall conclusion would be that he is playing an "in-between" note, which could be interpreted either way. I prefer the G# interpretation myself, but hey, I'm not trying to play the tune on a one-row!
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Steve_freereeder

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Re: One row tunes
« Reply #85 on: February 14, 2020, 03:55:59 PM »

That's interesting. When I listened it seemed clear to me that there were G#s in those scales. I was puzzled about why we might be perceiving this differently.

So I grabbed the clip as an MP3 and put it into Transcribe, isolated that note, and switched on "View Spectrum". It shows the note in question as being "Ab - 40 cents". Meaning about half way between a G and a G-sharp, verging a bit towards G-sharp side.

I checked some other notes too, as it's the relative pitch that matters. Results were a bit variable but mostly the notes were a bit under (A=440) pitch, which think strengthens the case for interpreting this note as a G-sharp.

However, my overall conclusion would be that he is playing an "in-between" note, which could be interpreted either way. I prefer the G# interpretation myself, but hey, I'm not trying to play the tune on a one-row!

Oh goodness! Maybe it's a case of me hearing what I want to hear and not what is actually there!  :o

OK - I've just loaded the recording into Garageband and slowed the relevant bars right down. Here's what I now think:
  • The G in bar 10 (1st descending scale) is ambiguous. It could be both G# or Gnat, given that two fiddlers are playing together in not quite unison, and with possibly differing ideas as to what the note may be, depending on how they learned the tune  ;)
  • The G in bar 11 (2nd scale) is more clearly G#: a straightforward descending scale of A major
  • The G in bar 12 (3rd scale) is Gnat; the tune is leading back into D major

Where does this leave us?
I think the tune works well with G naturals throughout. (I would say that wouldn't I, as I want to play it on a one-row in D which has no G#s ::) ). It's interesting how P&T's original dots (downloaded from The Session website) also have G nats  throughout, as it sort of indicates that's how the transcriber heard it or was given it.
Ultimately for this tune, I don't think it matters which way you play it, so long as you do play it, as it is a great tune worth playing. The tune doesn't mind.
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Steve
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Alan Pittwood

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Re: One row tunes
« Reply #86 on: February 14, 2020, 03:56:44 PM »

An example of playing in A mixolydian [flat 7th, G natural] to play on the D row starting on the A, 5th button.

This is side TWA [English: two] of Will Powrie's recording of The drunken piper/ Highland whisky/ The high road to Linton recorded in 1932 and released on the 78rpm Beltona 1855

More helpfully, it is track 18 on They ordered their pints of beer and bottles of sherry: the joys and curse of drink  The Voice of the People Volume 13 Topic Records TSCD663 (1998)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SUgWfeu-3Ns

X:1
T: Drunken piper, The
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K:Amix
|:e2 |A2 AB d3e | edBd e2a2 | G2 GB d3e | dBGB d3e |
A2 AB d3e | edBd e2a2 | g2eg efed | c2A2A2 :|
|: e2 |a4 e2a2 | edef g2a2 | G2 GB d3e | dBGB d2e2 |
a4 e2a2 | edef g2a2 | g2eg efed | c2A2A2 :|


And before you ask, yes, the other side of Will's Beltona 1855 is called ANE [English: one]
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tirpous

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Re: One row tunes
« Reply #87 on: February 14, 2020, 04:47:15 PM »

Quote
That's interesting. When I listened it seemed clear to me that there were G#s in those scales. I was puzzled about why we might be perceiving this differently.

There are many fiddlers (& Friends) in the recording and I think they don't all play the same note, some being G-ish and others G#-ish...
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baz parkes

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Re: One row tunes
« Reply #88 on: February 14, 2020, 04:56:43 PM »

Oh goodness! Maybe it's a case of me hearing what I want to hear and not what is actually there!  :o

And so say all of us Steve... :|glug
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playandteach

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Re: One row tunes
« Reply #89 on: February 14, 2020, 05:09:42 PM »

Lots of opinions, and not a cross word between us. More in tune than the playing (although it's not fair to say it is out of tune, if different people are playing different notes). Just glad to know some part of my aural ability is working.
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Jesse Smith

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Re: One row tunes
« Reply #90 on: February 14, 2020, 05:27:48 PM »

I don't play the fiddle, but isn't this possibly just an artifact of "sloppy" (no value judgment intended) fingering? Even on a fretted instrument like a guitar it's not that hard to end up playing a bit sharp when fretting aggressively. I imagine on fiddle it's quite easy, especially when playing fast, for your fingers to come down slightly short of the precise pitch, or end up bending the string like on a guitar. So then the question becomes, what makes more sense to be the intended pitch? If the rest of the tune is in D Major, and there's no obvious key change to an A Major tonality in the B part, isn't it more likely that the notes are intended to be G naturals, and any perceived sharpness is just a bit of sloppy intonation?

I'm all about learning by ear, but we should make sure we're not mechanically imitating accidental mistakes. (I mean, unless we like how they sound and want to consider them serendipitous variations!)
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playandteach

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Re: One row tunes
« Reply #91 on: February 14, 2020, 06:11:58 PM »

I don't think so. At that part of the fingerboard the G and G# aren't very close, and it would take quite a bit of sloppy playing to achieve that for a decent player.
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playandteach

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Re: One row tunes
« Reply #92 on: February 14, 2020, 06:23:59 PM »

Someone posted Seven Stars on another thread. Lies well on the row, it seems. I've been following advice about using the bottom front edge of the bellows to anchor bellows reversals. Just how much is that technique used by on the row players? - Most of the time, just in quick passages etc?
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Jesse Smith

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Re: One row tunes
« Reply #93 on: February 14, 2020, 06:47:25 PM »

I don't think so. At that part of the fingerboard the G and G# aren't very close, and it would take quite a bit of sloppy playing to achieve that for a decent player.

Thanks, like I said I don't play the fiddle (or any of the fretless string family). I would really like to have a dabble with it someday, but I am honestly profoundly intimidated. The beauty of the melodeon is being able to press a button and squeeze and get the right pitch every time. With a fiddle it seems like it would take six months or more of practice just to be able to consistently produce a tolerably in tune sound.
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Steve_freereeder

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Re: One row tunes
« Reply #94 on: February 14, 2020, 06:52:48 PM »

Someone posted Seven Stars on another thread. Lies well on the row, it seems. I've been following advice about using the bottom front edge of the bellows to anchor bellows reversals. Just how much is that technique used by on the row players? - Most of the time, just in quick passages etc?
I just hold the box comfortably, sitting down, and jam one end against the inside of my thigh and waggle the blooming bellows as needed without over-thinking it.

Was it this post you referred to?
http://forum.melodeon.net/index.php/topic,25060.msg298169.html#msg298169
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Jesse Smith

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Re: One row tunes
« Reply #95 on: February 14, 2020, 07:00:15 PM »

Someone posted Seven Stars on another thread. Lies well on the row, it seems. I've been following advice about using the bottom front edge of the bellows to anchor bellows reversals. Just how much is that technique used by on the row players? - Most of the time, just in quick passages etc?

Not sure I'm clear on what you're describing. Do you mean anchoring the bottom front edge of the treble end on your leg? I don't think I hold my one row much differently from my Pokerwork.

Regarding tunes that sit nicely on the one row: I have found that a lot of the tunes used by long sword dancing work really well on one row. For example:

Bobby Shafto
The Keel Row
The Oyster Girl (I really love this one in particular)
The Lass of Dallogill
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playandteach

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Re: One row tunes
« Reply #96 on: February 14, 2020, 07:14:19 PM »

Someone posted Seven Stars on another thread. Lies well on the row, it seems. I've been following advice about using the bottom front edge of the bellows to anchor bellows reversals. Just how much is that technique used by on the row players? - Most of the time, just in quick passages etc?
I just hold the box comfortably, sitting down, and jam one end against the inside of my thigh and waggle the blooming bellows as needed without over-thinking it.

Was it this post you referred to?
http://forum.melodeon.net/index.php/topic,25060.msg298169.html#msg298169
Not sure you've linked to the post you think you have.
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Steve_freereeder

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Re: One row tunes
« Reply #97 on: February 14, 2020, 07:40:58 PM »

Someone posted Seven Stars on another thread. Lies well on the row, it seems. I've been following advice about using the bottom front edge of the bellows to anchor bellows reversals. Just how much is that technique used by on the row players? - Most of the time, just in quick passages etc?
I just hold the box comfortably, sitting down, and jam one end against the inside of my thigh and waggle the blooming bellows as needed without over-thinking it.

Was it this post you referred to?
http://forum.melodeon.net/index.php/topic,25060.msg298169.html#msg298169
Not sure you've linked to the post you think you have.
I think I did, but I now see there's yet another thread about Seven Stars!
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playandteach

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Re: One row tunes
« Reply #98 on: February 14, 2020, 07:45:23 PM »

Just taken the bass blocks out on my Sander. Getting a sore tricep from practising with that bit of extra weight, and I have no desire to spoil the sound of the right hand with basses at the moment. I can't imagine a sweeter right hand sound than this box on 2 voices. Does anyone else have the ideal lightweight bass end - anyone else take out the blocks or not use basses?
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JohnAndy

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Re: One row tunes
« Reply #99 on: February 14, 2020, 08:01:03 PM »

isn't it more likely that the notes are intended to be G naturals, and any perceived sharpness is just a bit of sloppy intonation?

If it were due to sloppy playing (which was my first thought also), then I think it's more likely that the player was trying to change finger spacings to get the G# and didn't quite get it right - in the first scale down the B is quite flat, the A is actually a bit sharp, and the G# is also quite flat (according to Transcribe). After all, other Gs seem to be pitched OK (e.g. there's another high G towards the end of the B music and it's more or less bang on).

I do also happen to think that the G-sharps make musical sense and add to the character of the tune.

But on reflection I think it's more likely - as suggested by P&T and others - that it's more a case of one player playing a G and the other one playing a G-sharp. (Although I can't really hear a semitone clash sound, and Transcribe isn't showing me two peaks in the spectrum a semitone apart, as I'd expect - so I'm not really sure about this...)

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