Need some help?

If you want to play in sessions, then it obviously pays to learn those most commonly played or you will be playing on your own or not at all, depending on your confidence. You’ve probably got a good bit to be getting on with, for now anyway. In a while there could be another booklet about reels, hornpipes etc., but I hope that from here, you will be armed with the tools to discover for yourself. The object here was never more than give the confidence needed at the very beginning. A genesis booklet. Good luck.

Source: Tony Dixon Music – Need some help?

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10 of the most disturbing folk songs in history – BBC Music

Like all good stories, folk music is largely about three things: sex, death and politics. There might be a lot of carousing along the way, and there may be some discussion of farming or the occasional comedic skit to tickle your fancy, but the principal themes remain constant and they are always delivered with rude gusto. So, as we head towards this year’s Radio 2 Folk Awards, here are 10 examples of songs that go beyond the bounds of human decency (and are all the better for it)

Source: 10 of the most disturbing folk songs in history – BBC Music

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Scottish Country Dancing

This Scottish Country Dancing (SCD) website is intended as a reference to the traditional dancing of Scotland. It contains two main elements: • Dance Instructions A-Z Dance Cribs which provides succinct descriptions of over 5000 Scottish Country Dances in a form readily accessible to the preparer of a dance programme; • Comprehensive DICTIONARY Of Dance Terms which provides detailed definitions of the formal terms used in those instructions and by Scottish Country Dancers and teachers.

Source: Scottish Country Dancing

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Learning by Ear

Trad music is very difficult, if not impossible to notate as played. For example, changes in bow pressure, subtleties of phrasing, ornaments, etc. There is standard notation for bow direction, but it’s rarely used for folk music. As with any style of contemporary folk music, and with early classical music, the written sources are nothing more than a rough indication of what actually gets played.

Ear LEARNING makes you a better player. Every player approaches a tune differently, and each repetition of the tune should aim to be unique. Learning by ear helps you become more attuned to these differences, and makes your own playing more varied and interesting. When you learn a tune by ear, the tune seems to enter a different part of your brain―the part that’s directly connected to sound and music.  Though reading music is a very useful skill, when you stare at a piece of paper while you play you’re taxing your brain, making it do visual processing, instead of aural processing. For some people the visual processing makes it almost impossible for them to do some or all of the following: listen to what you are playing, to listen to what others are playing,  pay attention to how you are handling your instrument, be cognizant of your body, draw the rhythm into your body.  When you play your eyes should be used to make contact other musicians or the audience. Staring at the dots on the page makes you oblivious to what is going on around you — just like walking and texting, or worse driving  and texting.

Source: Learning by Ear | Slowplayers.org

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