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Thread: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

  1. #26
    Registered User Jill McAuley's Avatar
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    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    Here's that documentary on the South Donegal fiddle style - it's on youtube so broken into several parts - the one I'm posting is the first part and at about 4:40 in you get to the part where there's a fiddle de-tuned so as to try to replicate the sound of the bagpipes...



    Cheers,
    Jill

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    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jill McAuley View Post
    Re: the Scottish influence on the Donegal style of playing - I saw a great documentary about the Donegal style and they talked to a fiddle player who mentioned the influence of the pipes and then demonstrated a technique for de-tuning the fiddle so as to replicate (kind of) the sound of bagpipes - it was awesome! If I can find the link for the documentary I'll post it here...

    Cheers,
    Jill
    I hope I don't repeat anything. And I don't claim to be any type of authority on the matter, but the type of fiddle playing known as Cape Breton Fiddle is also developed to mimick the bagpipes.

    It gets confusing for some people when bands like The Pogues and Dropkick Murphys and others who describe themselves as Irish, feature Scottish bagpipes rather than the Uillean Pipes (Irish). Though similar, their sound is quite distinct from one another.

    Other than the influence of the bagpipes in Scottish music, I couldn't begin to explain the differences as I hear them, but they are quite distinct if you should listen.

    The mandolin I believe is far more prominant in Irish music. I read an article recently talking about the first person to modify the instrument to be better suited for Irish music, much like the Irish Bouzouki.
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  3. #28
    Registered User Jill McAuley's Avatar
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    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    Quote Originally Posted by theCOOP View Post

    The mandolin I believe is far more prominant in Irish music. I read an article recently talking about the first person to modify the instrument to be better suited for Irish music, much like the Irish Bouzouki.
    Do you have a link to that article? I have to say, coming from Ireland, I've never heard of anyone modifying the mandolin so that it's better suited to playing trad music on it.

    Cheers,
    Jill

  4. #29
    mandolin's Lord Voldemort mandocrucian's Avatar
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    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    It gets confusing for some people when bands like The Pogues and Dropkick Murphys and others who describe themselves as Irish, feature Scottish bagpipes rather than the Uillean Pipes (Irish).
    Besides the Uillean pipes (2 octaves, bellows driven), the Irish also have the "warpipes", which are pretty much the same as the Highland pipes. Here's an article all about it: The Irish Warpipes.

    NH

  5. #30
    Marbhna Luimni Eddie Sheehy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    I've never heard of anyone modifying a mandolin to be better suited to Irish music either... what could one possibly do to a mandolin? Flatten the Bowl - done; Use cross-tuning - done; Put a hole in the top to hold a pint glass - done (Herb Taylor), Use MOTS Celtic-motif inlay - done (ad nauseam)...

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    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jill McAuley View Post
    Do you have a link to that article? I have to say, coming from Ireland, I've never heard of anyone modifying the mandolin so that it's better suited to playing trad music on it.

    Cheers,
    Jill
    Oh hell, I dunno. Could've been Wiki for all I know (not that that's terribly reliable). Maybe I'm confusing it with an article about the Bouzouki. Regardless, I'll keep an eye out for it.

    But if I recall correctly, I think Andy Irvine & Terry Woods (Sweeney's Men) featured prominantly in the article.

    Maybe it was modified, but simply just introduced

    I'll keep an eye out for it.

    Cheers,
    Coop
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    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    Quote Originally Posted by theCOOP View Post
    Maybe I'm confusing it with an article about the Bouzouki. If I recall correctly, I think Andy Irvine & Terry Woods (Sweeney's Men) featured prominantly in the article.

    Maybe it was modified, but simply just introduced

    Cheers,
    Coop
    Yup, my apologies. It seems I was thinking of the (Irish) Bouzouki being introduced to traditional Irish music by Johnny Moynihan (Sweeney's Men) in the late 60s and not Irvine or Woods, and not the Mandolin.

    I don't think this is where I originally read it: http://www.ceolas.org/instruments/

    cheers,
    Coop
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  8. #33
    Registered User Bruce Evans's Avatar
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    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dagger Gordon View Post
    As regards the mandolin, I think it is fair to say that it isn't really a major instrument in either Scotland or Ireland although obviously it did feature in important bands like the Dubliners and Planxty in Ireland and is currently used by modern Scottish bands like Shooglenifty and The Chair.
    David, can you please cite for me, preferably with a YouTube example, a piece where The Dubliners use a mandolin? They of course have always used the tenor banjo by Barney McKenna and the 5 string as early as Luke Kelly, but I am aware of no instances where the mandolin is used. In absence of a YouTube, how about a reference to a record track? Thanks.

  9. #34
    coprolite mandroid's Avatar
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    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    Paleolithic Human settlement of the smaller island was from the larger one to the east.

    [ Perhaps the topic of one of the lectures ]


    then theres the Enclosure acts of Parliament, forcing many Scots off the commons lands ,
    then those peoples used in Transplantation of Ulster, and the subsequent Migration to the Colonies.
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    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Evans View Post
    David, can you please cite for me, preferably with a YouTube example, a piece where The Dubliners use a mandolin? They of course have always used the tenor banjo by Barney McKenna and the 5 string as early as Luke Kelly, but I am aware of no instances where the mandolin is used. In absence of a YouTube, how about a reference to a record track? Thanks.
    Is this not the dubliners w/ mandolin? Maybe they weren't actually billed as The Dubliners. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_6uX5GBmfTI

    The liner notes to The Dubliners - 30 Years a Greying shows that both Barney and Eamonn perform the Mandolin

    Afcourse 30 Years a Greying was released in 1992, so perhaps that doesn't count somehow?
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  11. #36
    Registered User Bruce Evans's Avatar
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    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    I wasn't challenging your statement, just asking for an example as I hadn't seen or heard the mandolin used by the Dubliners. Now I have, and I thank you for making me aware. I am a singer more than anything else, and I guess I tend to focus on The Dubs songs more than instrumentals.

  12. #37
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    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim MacDaniel View Post
    If memory serves me well, I believe Ireland hasn't been a part of the UK since 1948.
    Complicated subject which even many Scots and Irish don't take the time to research.
    Loosely speaking Britian was the term for the United Kingdoms of Scotland and England (by the Act of Union in 1707.)

    Great Britian in legal terms are the United Kingdoms of Scotland, England and Wales (although some historians would argue that Wales is a Principality of England, hence you have "Prince Charles the Prince of Wales", but i would'nt like to argue that one with my Welsh friends.)

    The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland was the formal name of the United Kingdom from 1 January 1801 until 12 April 1927. It was formed by the merger of the Kingdom of Great Britain and the Kingdom of Ireland.

    Following Irish independence on 6 December 1922, when the 1921 Anglo-Irish Treaty came into effect, the name continued in official use until it was changed to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland by the Royal and Parliamentary Titles Act of 1927. The part of the island of Ireland that seceded from the United Kingdom in 1922 is today named Ireland (although often described as the Republic of Ireland to distinguish it from the island)..... and Northern Ireland of course remained "British"

    A new constitution was introduced in 1937 that declared an entirely sovereign state and named it simply as Ireland. 1948 the Republic of Ireland (as it became know) cut off all lasting political links with the United Kingdom and is now fully independent (with the exception of the 6 counties of Northern Ireland.)

    So that's why on a British Passport it states "United Kingdom of Great Britian and Northern Ireland".

    ahhh, history and politics Yuueeegh. give me good old Scots/Irsih music any time

  13. #38
    Registered User Jill McAuley's Avatar
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    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Evans View Post
    David, can you please cite for me, preferably with a YouTube example, a piece where The Dubliners use a mandolin? They of course have always used the tenor banjo by Barney McKenna and the 5 string as early as Luke Kelly, but I am aware of no instances where the mandolin is used. In absence of a YouTube, how about a reference to a record track? Thanks.
    There's mandolin on the recording I have of "The Black Velvet Band" - not sure what year it's from but Luke is singing. There's also mandolin on "The Marino Waltz" aka "Marino's Waltz"....

    Cheers,
    Jill

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    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    Trebleclef528-

    Thanx!!! You said it so much better and with such authority that a Yankee like me could never even approach!

    My wife & I have loved our time in your country! Stayed in Edinburgh and on the shores of Loch Ness in Inverfarigaig! Beautiful country & people!

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    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    I didn't suppose you were. I just wasn't sure a compilation of tunes with special guests constituted as The Dubliners, Proper. Or if they themselves might be guests on another album (The Pogues), or oif there wasn't a sufficient number in attendance to refer to them as The Dubliners collectively, or billed as such.

    Now with Ronnie Drew also deceased, would The Dubliners be quite as recogniseable?
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    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    Not exactly a Youtube, and he could with tuning up a bit, but here you are.

    Barney and John used mandolins quite a bit, if I remember rightly. I'm not really that familiar with their stuff, but I'm pretty sure they featured the mandolin (bowl-back?) reasonably often.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YIEy7...eature=related

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1SBTk...eature=related
    David A. Gordon

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    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    In one tradition you have all these great tunes that are addicting and can be played enthusiatically with others. In the other tradition you have.... um... never mind.

    I just play what they are playing at the session, and leave it at that. I usually find that I know something like 1/3 of the tunes, and if I play with those folks another time I can get up to 2/3.

    If I knew all the tunes I would never get to drink!
    As much as I post, I pick a whole lot more. Just sayin'
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  18. #43
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    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    JeffD,

    Can't let you off with that, I'm afraid.

    Please explain.
    David A. Gordon

  19. #44
    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    Well its based on my experiences in and around the Edinburgh Folk Festival, the very first time I attended.

    I was younger then, and went at enjoyments with an energy and passion I now reserve for deadlines at work. I went to every jam I could, and some were billed as Irish and some were billed as Scottish, as I remember the sessions inside upstairs at what was kind of "ground zero", were mostly Irish, while by contrast, the wonderful time I had at Sandy Bell's, or The Green Tree were considered more Scottish. I was new to it all and could hardly tell you the difference. It all seemed faster than I could play, though I could recognize many of the tunes.

    I played all day, and with my little cassette recorder gobbled up the tunes I didn't know, learned them at night, and the next day was able to do more.

    The main point was that at the time I personally felt I had to learn every tune. Every tune I did not know I took as a challenge and an assignment. I burned myself out, but had I died, it would take the mortician a week just to get the smile off my face.

    The difference between the Scottish sessions and the Irish sessions, to one like me at the time were not really noticed. Many of the tunes showed up in both kinds of jams, or at least were at least not unwelcome. It was all one big mountain to me.

    It took me several years of full blown "to the wall" playing, in Edinburgh, Glasgow, in Ireland in Dublin and in Galway Bay and elsewhere, in the States and in Canada, for me to acquire the wisdom to utlize the moments when I didn't know the tune to take advantage of the other enjoyments of the musical environment.

    So, whatever the differences between Irish and Scottish, they most certainly are not in the exciement and enthusiasm with which one can immerse oneself in the tunes, or how infinite the repertory can seem, and certainly not in how steep the mountain can feel to the newbie.
    As much as I post, I pick a whole lot more. Just sayin'
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  20. #45
    poor excuse for anything Charlieshafer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    The "jagged rock vs. water-smoothed stones" analogy is great. I come from the Scots fiddle end of things, and your aim is to spew great shards of rhythm and melody across the dance floor. Rhythm is king, heavy accent on the up beats to get the dancers moving. THE all-time great link to sit down and get a handle on Scots tunes is here: James Scott Skinner. There's one old field recording of Skinner playing his own compositions, and search for pieces like "The Hurricane" and Tullochgorum" being played by folks like Natalie MacMaster (Capre Breton) or Jenna Reid (Scotland) or most anything by Alasdair Fraser or Hanneke Cassel. Youtube and Amazon are full of snips. It's craggy, sometimes strangely-metered stuff, especially the Strathspeys.

    We're hosting a workshop for Scots fiddling in Madison, Ct on April 17, and there's no reason mandolin players can't sit in to really get a feel for what's up. Hanneke Cassel is teaching, then there's a concert and dance in the evening with her band. Besides, the workshops we hold are free...

  21. #46

    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlieshafer View Post
    The "jagged rock vs. water-smoothed stones" analogy is great. I come from the Scots fiddle end of things, and your aim is to spew great shards of rhythm and melody across the dance floor. Rhythm is king, heavy accent on the up beats to get the dancers moving.
    That's my favourite analogy in this thread so far> i have spent some time listening to both Irish and Scottish music with this in mind and it does begin to help me distinguish the musical accents better.

    Also thanks to all the folks who have provided videos, links and their own sincere thoughts on this subject, it really does help to have the opinions of others who enjoy the music.

  22. #47

    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    Quote Originally Posted by trebleclef528 View Post
    ahhh, history and politics Yuueeegh. give me good old Scots/Irsih music any time
    There's an old pub rule, 'no politics and no religion at the bar' and with good reason.

    I have to say though, i did appreciate your addition to the political sideshow of this thread. As a quick outline its gives a fine taster of the complications of history and more than hints at the connections of all the cultures of these islands.

  23. #48

    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    Quote Originally Posted by mandroid View Post
    Paleolithic Human settlement of the smaller island was from the larger one to the east.
    Apparently there is no evidence to support the case for Paleolithic human settlement in Ireland... though a herd of prehistoric mandocellos were recently found preserved in a peat bog in Tommervarney... so well preserved in fact that the plectrums that last fallen in their sound holes were still to be found in their bellys
    Last edited by M.Marmot; Mar-29-2010 at 1:04am. Reason: this edit was brought to you by the letter W

  24. #49

    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jill McAuley View Post
    Here's that documentary on the South Donegal fiddle style
    Ta very much for that, i'm gonna make meself a cuppa tay and sit down to enjoy that now

  25. #50

    Default Re: Scottish Irish Whats the Difference?

    http://video.google.com/videoplay?do...1203443425133#

    Well whaddya know!

    Heres a link to a series discussing the different regional Irish styles, from the good folks of TG4.

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