New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

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New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby Hugh-AR » 14 Sep 2016 16:39

Here's a new Theme especially for Brian D .. anything with a 'Scottish' flavour. Two things that immediately come to mind are 'bagpipes' and 'piano accordion'.

When I came over to UK from Kenya I spent four years in Dundee, and having been in a 'band' in Nairobi it was inevitable that I would try and join something in Scotland .. which happened to be a Scottish Country Dance Band (surprise, surprise!). The piano accordionist was an amazing player. He played completely by 'ear' and didn't even know the names of the chords he was playing .. he just hunted around those buttons until he found the right sound. I had to record him playing all those eightsome reels so I could write out the chords and accompany him on the piano.

So here's a recording with both bagpipes and piano accordion. I do think the piano accordion sound is very realistic (very 'reedy') and could easily be my friend playing it. As for the bagpipes? Why is it that whenever a professional organist at our organ club mentions playing a piece with bagpipes, everybody groans? I quite like them, and find them very distinctive.

Mull of Kintyre & The Road and the Miles to Dundee

https://app.box.com/s/uqx8782wowdsq3aoujiihyq0gejmfj73

At the end, I have done a bit of what Brian(007) would call 'Multi-tracking', so there is a 'counter-melody' fitting in with the tune.

Hugh
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby papadeedee » 14 Sep 2016 20:46

A very nice medley Hugh, the accordion was spot on. :D :D :D
I have a fairly large collection of Scottish tunes, I will post something traditional soon.
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby Peter S » 14 Sep 2016 22:45

Piano Accordion sounds lovely on this.
Would love another Scottish trip this year.
You've Put me in the Highland mood Hugh!
Keep the music playing!
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby Hugh-AR » 15 Sep 2016 00:27

Hi Brian D,

In Scotland in the mid 1960s, whenever there was a Wedding the Bride and Groom would hire a live band, and after the Reception the guests would all do Scottish Country Dancing, dressed in their kilts and finery. Then in the evening it was the 'pop music' of the day for the youngsters, Rock 'n Roll and all the rest of it. None of this 'Disco' nonsense! So our band had plenty of engagements. We were called 'The Haymakers', after Andy Hay the piano accordionist. But why am I telling you all this? You would know what went on in Scotland in the 60s.

When I came down to Somerset I really missed all that lively Scottish music, so anything you can put up would bring back the memories of those days for me.

Hugh
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby Brian007 » 15 Sep 2016 07:52

Hi Hugh,

That was a very good Scottish Melody, the voices you used were spot on, Enjoyed it.


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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby JohnT » 15 Sep 2016 18:54

Hi Hugh A nice medley with sounds to match. Enjoyed my over the borders listen. John
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby papadeedee » 15 Sep 2016 21:25

A quick Scottish Medley, I posted a version of this earlier in the year but prior to that I hadn't played that tune for over forty years.
It's one my band used to play, funny how some tunes stick in your memory.
https://app.box.com/s/1hjx33mkw1z8ek2wymjdsibnsnr38k7w
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby JohnT » 16 Sep 2016 08:42

Hi Brian. A nice lively medley. Good foot tapper. Enjoyed it. John
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby Hugh-AR » 16 Sep 2016 10:00

Brian D,

Now that certainly brings back the memories! Thanks for posting that. Those were not any of the tunes we played, but I did recognise the rhythms as being ones we would have played for specific dances. The first part of your piece had a military flavour, and fairly fast. Can't remember what dance that was for. If I remember rightly, an Eightsome Reel and the Gay Gordons just have a 'straight off-beat'. The second part of your recording has an off beat with a 'lilt' in it, which I'm pretty sure is a 'Military Two-Step'. Great to listen to!

My wife and I are coming up to Scotland at the end of the month for a few nights, organised by Pathfinder Tours. Train from Weston-super-Mare to Fort William and staying a couple of nights in Fort William. A special train to Mallaig and back one day; and sail, rail and road to Tobermory the next. Don't suppose we shall get to see any Scottish Country Dancing though.

Hugh
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby papadeedee » 16 Sep 2016 10:36

Hi John,
Thanks for listening.
Hugh,
We used to play it for Gay Gordons but a little bit slower.
The first tunes in 2/4 and the last tune in 6/8, it gave the dancers a bit of a lift.
On this specific recording, on the six eight part I am a bit out of sync with the drums.
I think I was concentrating on getting the notes right and lost the timing a bit.

The rail trip to Malaig is spectacular, I hope you are going on the steam train, it
is brilliant. You will go over the viaduct that is in The Harry Potter films.
Although there will be ceilidhs going on in the region, I expect your time
will be pretty much organised by the tour operators and you may
not have time to go "jigging"
Brian.
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby Brian007 » 16 Sep 2016 16:17

Hi Brian,

A good medley, brought back memories of my school days and especially christmas parties.

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The Skye boat song

Postby JohnT » 16 Sep 2016 20:00

Hi Everyone Thought I would keep the challenge alive. This about Bonnie Prince Charlie. The sounds include accordion and bagpipes. I wish he had the foresight to build a bridge before he went it would have prevented me having dampness in the keyboard whilst accompanying him on the boat. I hope you enjoy your listen. John

https://app.box.com/s/614znpeqpoj063iqwb836dm6jblcpttu
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby papadeedee » 16 Sep 2016 21:25

Hi John,
A lovely tune, well played. :) :) :)
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby Hugh-AR » 16 Sep 2016 22:56

Hi John,

A lovely song! Had forgotten about that one! So thanks for putting it up .. and with a piano accordion too! I used to own and play one a bit, but wasn't very good at it. The piano accordionist in our band used to have the bulk of his accordion resting on his knee (he never stood up to play .. he always sat down). And as he played he used to 'stamp' with his heel in time to the music, and this used to give the music a bit of a 'lift' .. particularly when playing Rock 'n Roll numbers.

I wondered what other Scottish songs I had forgotten about, so did a Google Search and came up with this list:

http://www.rampantscotland.com/songs/blsongs_index.htm

Brian D .. I have asked Pathfinder tours about the train to Mallaig and they say the train they will be using is the one we will be on .. so not the steam train. The viaduct looks quite spectacular!

Hugh
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby Brian007 » 17 Sep 2016 07:43

Hi John T.

Good to see you posting again,
That was a lovely tune, which you played well.

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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby JohnT » 17 Sep 2016 08:47

Hi BrianD. Thanks for listening and more important commenting. John

Hi 007. Thanks for your comments appreciated. Just back from docs for flu and shingles jabs. First in queue of 400. John

Hi Hugh. Thanks for your comments. Have you been on YouTube and watched Paul play Tyros with chromatic keyboard. Well worth a listen. Hope you enjoy your trip I heard that the bridge and scenery is one of the best. John
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby Hugh-AR » 17 Sep 2016 09:50

Hi John T,

No, I haven't. I have done a YouTube Search for 'Paul playing Tyros with chromatic keyboard' and have come up with these:

https://www.youtube.com/results?search_ ... c+keyboard

Will enjoy listening to this lot, and thanks for the tip.

Hugh
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby papadeedee » 17 Sep 2016 17:14

Hi Guys,
I have just checked out the chromatic keyboard, I never knew such a thing even existed but very impressive.
Scottish selection, How many can you name ?
https://app.box.com/s/ax4mbzl8ii0txakdfx4m4f8mcvj5kp56
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby Hugh-AR » 17 Sep 2016 18:18

Help! I know one we used to play that won't be in there (it was my favourite Scottish piece when we played it in the band) .. because, as I discovered years later .. it's Irish! I'm practising it right now, and will put it up when I can get my head round it.

Brian D .. songs in your Medley. Only recognised The Sky Boat Song and Scotland The Brave. Unless someone else comes up with more you'll have to tell us what they were!

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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby papadeedee » 18 Sep 2016 16:27

I set up eight organ registrations to switch with the foot pedal and just cycled through them.
I didn't know myself what tunes were coming up next until I turned the pages in the book.

Here are the song titles
Annie Laurie
The Bluebells of Scotland
The Skye Boat Song
Ye Banks and Braes
The Dark Isle
Comin' Through the Rye
My Love is like a Red Red Rose
Will Ye No Come Back Again
Scotland the Brave.
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby Hugh-AR » 18 Sep 2016 18:27

Brian D,

Thanks for putting up that list. When listening again, I had two pages running on my computer at the same time, one that had your Scottish Selection LINK and the other that had your list of the titles of the songs. I clicked on your LINK, which took me to your Box download; and on the other page I could read your titles as it was playing. If the Tierce de Picardie site opened LINKs up in a 'New Window' I wouldn't have had to have done that.

Anyhow, it's funny how the mind works, because I knew all those songs and they 'registered' with me when I had the titles in front of me. A good selection of songs.

Now, I have been busy and finally got my head round some of the tunes we used to play for the Scottish Country Dancing (note the held 'chord' for the formalities at the beginning and at the end of the dance). Not talented like Keith and you are at reading music, so have had to play it from memory. The first tune is called The Mason's Apron, which as I said above is actually Irish. Loved this one, and so did the dancers. What I have played is pretty much what Andy played on his Piano Accordion, but listening to the Dubliners playing it on YouTube I reckon this is very much an 'approximation' of the original tune, which I reckon would have defied anybody to put to music as there is so much 'ad-libbing' in it. The second is Scotland The Brave; and the third (the 6/8 timing one) .. no idea, so hope you can help me with the title of this one.

Scottish Medley

https://app.box.com/s/8qv30k0e65f1gnt6wij6zyxihrztuq4j

Hugh
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby JohnT » 18 Sep 2016 18:58

Hi Brian A lovely medley. Remembered most of them. Well put together. Enjoyed my listen.
John

Hi Hugh Enjoyed my listen Some nice sounds. John
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby Brian007 » 18 Sep 2016 19:51

Hi Brian,

A great melody, which I knew a few of them, well voiced and put together

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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby papadeedee » 18 Sep 2016 20:22

Hi John, Glad you enjoyed the medley.

Hugh, A very nice medley. :D :D :D
I have music for that tune and it is down as Gay Gordons but I think the actual title is "Cock of the North."

As you mention, it is helpful to be able to read but if the music is complicated, I have to practice it before I can Play it.
I have just recorded a piece on the piano, I had to run through it several times to eliminate the mistakes,
Some of the jumps in the left hand were causing me to look at the keyboard and lose my place in the
music. I then had to look at what I was doing and figure out how to reach the notes without taking my eyes off the music
otherwise I would have to spend time memorising the arrangement and on this occasion,
I didn't want to bother doing that.
When I was learning to be a hypnotist, I studied a bit of Neuro Linguistic programming and it says there are four stages of learning
Roughly speaking it goes like this :
1 "unconscious incompetence" / meaning / This is the very initial stage by which the person knows nothing either consciously or subconsciously
2 "Conscious incompetence / meaning / You know you can't do it yet but have an insight of how to achieve it.
3 Conscious competence / meaning / You can do it with conscious effort
4 Unconscious competence / meaning / You turn it over to your subconscious and can do it without conscious effort.
I would say that the following "Bonnie banks" is stage 3, conscious competence but not automatic.
https://app.box.com/s/bw0hhnwzakqk4qljj3bmii68kxinmdeb
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby Hugh-AR » 18 Sep 2016 23:52

Brian D,

That was a very good example of Conscious competence. If you have 'read' all those notes then I take my hat off to you! I reckon the most I could do is read a 'melody line' and follow the chords written on the music (as in a 'Busker Book').

Is this a piano/clavinova you are playing? Or is your organ set up with a 'piano voice'? Anyway, it's refreshing to hear a piece played with 'just piano'. After all, a piano is a 'stand alone' instrument and can be played like that. Too often there seems to be a need to constantly 'change the voice'. I reckon if you do change a voice, a natural place for a change is at the start of a new verse, or a chorus. I once knew a professional keyboard player who changed the sound of his instrument every few bars. It did my head in! Mind you, in an orchestra one would probably expect that to happen.

Hugh
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby papadeedee » 19 Sep 2016 10:52

Hi Hugh,
It is a Lowrey digital piano, it has other sounds and auto accompaniment as well but I got it because I wanted a
piano with weighted keys.
Regarding the tune, it is not difficult for me to read, the problem I was having was that all of the left hand notes
are octaves and made some of the jumps a little awkward to reach but I have ways of overcoming that. :)
Brian
p.s. I could ad lib a better arrangement but I wanted to read it.
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby JohnT » 20 Sep 2016 17:45

Hi Brian. Enjoyed my listen. Wish I was there a lovely part of the country. I think I would be unconscious when I play. John
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby KRUG » 21 Sep 2016 19:15

After a week without the Internet it is good to be on line again. For this theme I have first gone to a book called "The Singing Island" by Peggy Seeger and Ewan MacColl. This song is number 10 in Child's register of old folk music and tells the sad story of sororicide and is one of the few traditional ballads to find its way into Scots-Gaelic folksong. The musical direction is "hypnotically" but playing the piece suggested a march to me so that is what you have got. Version one of the march is very different to version two so that adds interest. It starts with a bagpipe and progresses to accordions. The title of the song is "Minorie" which is a place name that only seems to exist in this song!

https://app.box.com/s/8iwy8babjgj0jt4v2srm9mn3zuqy4t94

Keith

I enjoyed listening to Hugh, John and Brian's entries.
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby KRUG » 21 Sep 2016 19:54

My second one for this evening is from Folk Songs of England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales. It is a lullaby played largely on bagpipes and the words are thought to be from the Gaelic and consist of lots of Baloo baleeries and exhortations to "Gang awa' peerie fairies" and "Doun come the bonny angels." The child is then told to "Sleep saft."

I Hope that Baloo Baleerie does not put you to sleep.

https://app.box.com/s/pfl8rbtirrawse6jfdnuaqc53hgwhvs5

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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby Brian007 » 21 Sep 2016 20:15

Hi Brian D.

That was a nice version the Bonnie Banks, and it sounded really well on the piano.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Hi Kieth,

A couple of Scottish numbers I have not heard before, but they still sounded pretty good
the voices you used fit the tunes very well.


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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby Hugh-AR » 22 Sep 2016 00:08

Keith,

Good to see you back! Must admit, I did have to look 'sororicide' up in the dictionary as that is a word I haven't come across before .. only to find it's not in the Oxford Concise English Dictionary. But I did find it in a Google Search. I see this piece is appropriately played in a minor key. I like the two 'March' rhythms you have used. As you say, having two completely different marches adds interest to the tune, and to me makes it very 'Scottish'. The AR organ has a D button which 'holds' the rhythm right through a piece. Wouldn't want to use that here!

The voicing in your second tune is nothing short of brilliant! Those bagpipes. You have an 'intonation' on those bagpipes that makes them very authentic.

To quote from Wikipedia: In bagpipe music there is extensive use of grace notes. Indeed, because the chanter is not tongued but supplied by a continuous air source from the bag, grace notes are sometimes the only way to differentiate between notes. For example, inserting a grace note between two crotchets (quarter notes) played at the same pitch is the only way to indicate them as opposed to them sounding like a single minim (half note). Various multiple grace note ornaments are formalised into distinct types, such as doublings, throws, and birls. A single grace note is played on the beat as is the first grace note of a complex ornament such as a doubling. The ornament taorluath is an exception: its last grace note is played on the beat. Gracenotes are typically played as short as possible by lifting the fingers quickly and a short distance off the chanter.

And you have got those bagpipes interspersed with 'grace notes'. I don't think I have ever heard the bagpipes played as well as that (apart from real bagpips, of course).

Hugh
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby JohnT » 22 Sep 2016 12:41

Hi Keith Two very obscure tunes. But you did them justice. Nice sounds and style. Enjoyed them. John
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby KRUG » 22 Sep 2016 20:03

Thanks to Brian, Hugh and John for their very kind comments on yesterday's efforts.

Today I have decided to go more mainstream and attempt Highland Cathedral. I like to imagine situations when playing music and for this one I imagine that we are in a cathedral which has suddenly appeared in Glen Coe and the clan has gathered to honour its dead. The congregation first hear the drummers and the organ bass pedals as they start a slow march which heralds the sound of approaching pipers as they enter the cathedral. The tune is picked up by the organist but he stays somewhat in the background until he decides that it is time that he showed everybody his power as he brings the music to a glorious finale. But you cannot keep a bagpipe quiet and at the very end they just add the icing to the musical cake.

I do hope that you enjoy "Highland Cathedral" through some decent headphones. It starts quietly and ends much more loudly.

https://app.box.com/s/su8t713ed92mf5ve5mn4xdj4rx3msoeg

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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby JohnT » 22 Sep 2016 20:15

Hi Everyone Had several goes with this one. It was a favourite of my father and it is Sir Harry Lauder and Keep right on to the end of the road. Played it as a march. A little dampness but hope you enjoy your listen. John

https://app.box.com/s/0ez11qu82yqjvh6h76kc681e4cl8tyqp
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Re: New Theme .. something with a 'Scottish' flavour

Postby Peter S » 22 Sep 2016 20:26

Hello all

Does anyone remember the fabulous 80s film 'Highlander' starring Christopher Lambert and Sean Connery.An immortal Scottish swordsman must confront the last of his immortal opponent, a murderously brutal barbarian who lists for the fabled 'Prize'.

The theme music was written and performed by Queen - 'Highlander - who wants to live forever'

https://app.box.com/s/8s9syklahxqxenkvx514x0f123a2m94e
Keep the music playing!
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