Week #83 ~ Forty Pound Float

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  1. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    This week's winner is a polka known as Forty Pound Float; also known as 4 Pound Cheque, 42 Pound Float, & 45 Pound Cheque! In 1974 Planxty recorded a medley of Polkas on Cold Blow and the Rainy Night consisting of Denis Murphy's Polka, Forty Pound Float, and John Ryan's Polka.

    Here is the ABC from thesession.org
    X: 1
    T: Four Pound Cheque, The
    M: 2/4
    L: 1/8
    R: polka
    K: Dmaj
    |: Ad Bd/B/ | AD FA | GE BE | A>G FD | Ad Bd/B/ | AD FA | GE A>G | FD D2 :|
    |: Ad fe/f/ | gf ed | cA eA | e>d cA | Ad fe/f/ | gf e>d | cA Bc | d2 d2:|

    As was pointed out earlier, right before the social group started, there was a CBOM challenge on this medley... here is one of my submissions....

  2. Tosh Marshall
    Tosh Marshall
    Barbara, I found Forty Pound Float on JC's Tunefinder, which sounds more akin to John Ryans:

    X: 1
    T:Forty Pound Float
    S:Black Book
    O:Don's Polka #3
    F:http://jc.tzo.net/~jc/music/abc/mirr...nell%2527s.abc 2010-11-26 19:05:42 UT
    d2d2 BcdB|A2F2 A2F2|d2d2 BcdB|A2F2 E2D2|d2d2 BcdB|A2F2 A2de|f2d2 edc2|d4 d4:|
    |:f2d2 d2ef|g2f2 e2de|f2d2 A2d2|f2df a3g|f2d2 d2ef|g2f2 e2de|f2d2 edc2|d4 d4:|
  3. David Hansen
    David Hansen
    One of the challenges of playing familiar tunes is making them sound new and fresh. I learned the "Planxty Polkas" a long time ago. The last one in that set I've known as John Ryan's Polka so to make it "new" for me I've played the tune in the Aeolian mode.

    Disclaimer: This is not a model for the tune 40 Pound Float or John Ryan's Polka.

  4. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    Tosh, I found that, too, but believe it to be in error. If you look on thesession.org, it also has that tune you linked to, as being Forty Pound Float. I may be wrong though.... you all are free to record anything you find saying it's 40 pound float! :-)
  5. Tosh Marshall
    Tosh Marshall
    No probs Barbara, I was just confused as to which tune is which!!!! I'll see what occurs and go with the flow......David that was quick and fantastic as always.....Barbara, your CBOM is great too!!!
  6. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    Tosh, I hope that my musical abilities have improved in the last year and a half.... when I get back home, I'll try recording this again!
  7. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
  8. Susanne
    That's great, if the session wants to call John Ryan's Forty pound float, that's what I'll record!
  9. Marcelyn
    Barbara, I'm so jealous of how you get through three tunes twice each without any flubs. Also, your instrument sounds wonderful while doing it.

    David, the idea to put John Ryan's in a dorian mode is brilliant. It sounds completely new and I really liked the accordion part.

    There's nothing incredibly special about mine except that I made it through two songs two times each without a major train wreck. That's a feat I never would have thought possible when I joined nine months ago. 40 Pound Float is first, followed by John Ryan's. Since I already knew these, my goal is to learn the third this week, but don't hold your breath to see me putting them together in one recording.

  10. John Kelly
    John Kelly
    Marcelyn, This is a really good piece of playing! You really get a lot of lift into the tunes here and they drive along well. Hint - record yourself playing the new, third tunes separately then add it into this video using your video-editing software; saves you re-doing a perfectly good take and is not cheating, as you are still the player on all three tunes.

    It's been great seeing how much your playing and confidence have developed over the time you have been in the group and this is probably one of the great aspects of this particular group, giving us the chance to have our efforts seen and appreciated by the others in the group.
  11. Manfred Hacker
    Manfred Hacker
    Very nice, Marcy!
    I concur with every word of John's praise
  12. Marcelyn
    Thanks John and Manfred. I like the splicing idea, and I should have done it with my other recording of John Ryan's which was better than this one. I'm glad to know that wouldn't be scoffed at.
  13. Douglas McMullin
    Douglas McMullin
    Has anyone come across a .tef file for this one? If not I guess I should start figuring out the ABC system.
  14. maudlin mandolin
    maudlin mandolin
    Very nicely done Marcelyn. I find it hard enough to to do one tune without mistakes so I reorded them separately on a Savannah. Here is 4 cheque. http://www.mandolincafe.com/forum/at...2&d=1290867399
  15. maudlin mandolin
    maudlin mandolin
  16. Jill McAuley
    Jill McAuley
    Great stuff everyone, and Marcelyn your Old Wave sounds particularly awesome on this recording!
  17. Jim Baker
    Jim Baker
    Douglas, I have a tef file for John Ryan's/Forty Pound Float. I was paste it here but that is not an option. If you send me a private message I'll send it to you.
  18. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    Jim, the way to get tef files to people here, is to go to the regular message board forums (not the social groups), scroll down to 'miscellaneous' and you'll find a thread called "Thread for Social Group MP3 Posting". On that forum, you can attach a broader variety of attachments, tef files being one. Choose 'reply to thread', make sure you are at 'advanced reply', and write in your message the name of the tune that you are attaching the tef file. Then, scroll down to where it says 'manage attachments', click that, and you can then attach your tef file to the message. Once you get it posted, you can then link to the message with the attachment, in the discussion in the Social Group.

    The way to link to your message with the tef file: (maybe Michael, or someone else who regular links can chime in here, as I don't utilize that )function!)

    I think once you have attached the file, you can right click on the file, and copy the link, or the url. Then, just paste it in a reply on the social group message..
  19. Tosh Marshall
    Tosh Marshall
    Great playing Marcelyn, you've achieved what I can't, get through it without clangers!!!!
    Anyway, here's mine, clangers an' all........

  20. Jill McAuley
    Jill McAuley
    Sounds great to me Tosh, plus I kept waiting for The Clangers to make a cameo appearance and pop up from behind the settee!
  21. Tosh Marshall
    Tosh Marshall
    Blimey Jill, you remember them! They are even on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HArUmqqiL0s
  22. Marcelyn
    Thanks a ton, Tosh. I clicked on your Clangers link and my kids were instantly drawn to the computer. I was stuck watching the entire episode.

    Great job on the three tunes in a row. That sounded wonderful.
  23. Tosh Marshall
    Tosh Marshall
    Thanks Marcelyn, you can't beat the Clangers, totally surreal TV which we don't seem to get anymore.....bring back Banana Splits!!!!!
  24. Jim Baker
    Jim Baker

    Thanks Barbara. Now let's see if this link works. If it does we should see John Ryan's tef file as an attachment.
  25. Eddie Sheehy
    Dennis Murphy giving a 4-Pound cheque to John Ryan. Played on a Gypsy 17"-scale Mandola.

  26. Eddie Sheehy
    And a blast from the past... (this is my version of Mannfred's Resume)...

    Played on a Weber Big Sky Octave Mandolin...

  27. tnt2002
    Marcy, Very nice, I like the way those pieces fit together, and you played it so well.

    I played the song note for note from the ABC notation above.

  28. Shane Gibbons
    Shane Gibbons
    Such variation in all the entries...It's great to hear all y'all play through this stuff--gives me a reference for the feel of it rather than just what I get off the ink and paper.

    I just started on this tonight--so far I can play through the forty pound float while looking at the music, but I'm hoping to get at least one of the other ones worked up for the video as well.

    I always thought polkas were just the oom-pah oom-pah you hear around Oktoberfest.
  29. Susanne
    Wow, such nice submissions. But I realized that what most of you play is Denis Murphy's, I was sure it would be John Ryan's (some of you squeezed in John Ryan's as well). Such a confusion in my head this week, lol. The Four pound cheque abc tune on the top here is really neat, i haven't heard it before.
  30. Shane Gibbons
    Shane Gibbons
    I got a quick question--

    in the 3rd measure of the B part of Forty Pound Float, where it goes c#A eA, should I let the A ring while playing the e? Is that polka-ish Or should it be strictly the melody notes individually?

    Might be a moot point as my fingers are doing well just to get all the notes without figuring out how to mute ringing strings.

    Tempo is another thing...the entries have varied wildly, but I think Barbara's version is less intimidating for me. Since a polka is a dance though, I imagine it's supposed to be pretty lively. BTW, love the sound of your instrument Barbara.
  31. Martin Whitehead
    Martin Whitehead
    Shane, I haven't learned FPF yet, but I can tell you not to worry about the speed of your tempo. No one is going to be dancing this time around. Focus on keeping a steady tempo. You did a good job of that on your first post. Speed only comes with practice and familiarity and should come naturally. If you force yourself to go faster than you are comfortable you will (1) have trouble learning the tune and (2) jeopardize your steady tempo. Also, focus on pick direction (I'm a lost cause in that area and the consummate bad example). Pick down on the downbeat and vice versa. Barbara is a maniac when it comes to pick direction and can give you guidance, as can many others here.
  32. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    Me? A maniac?

    Thanks for the compliment on my octave mandolin... I do love it! This isn't the greatest recording... I shall try to do another when I get back home!
  33. Shane Gibbons
    Shane Gibbons
    Well I bought the mp3 from amazon of the Planxty set, and I think they answered my question--the note in that measure seems to ring through.

    They play it much faster than I plan to for sure.

    On the pick direction thing, I started working on it last night with two down strokes per measure, but after reading the sister thread in the cbom group, I'm thinking this song might call for four down strokes per measure (in 2/4 time), so that the odd 16th note gets an up stroke but pretty much all the 8th notes get downstrokes.

    That would solve the problem of that first measure where I was playing du dud | d and my wrist kept getting confused. The new way would be d d d du | d
  34. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    Shane, 2/4 time signature usually throws me for a loop.... If I pick it with the 2 down stokes (on the beat), and up on the count between, it gets screwy when there are more notes per measure. So, like you, I pick it more like it's 4/4 time, with 4 down strokes per measure, and upstrokes in between!
  35. Martin Whitehead
    Martin Whitehead
    @Barbara ~ I meant that in the kindest sense of the word.
  36. John Kelly
    John Kelly
    This has been a fascinating thread so far, so many variations and offerings and so many titles suggested. Once again a completely new tune to me - one of the main reasons for being in thid social group! To muddy the waters further, here is my version from the abc posted by Barbara along with the well-known "I'll Tell My ma" added on for good measure. Pictures and collie dog are courtesy of my younger daughter.

  37. ieatcrayons
    Great job everyone some really nice playing here.

    Here's mine. Not perfect but did it in one take, compared to last week's 50 or so, so I guess it's progress

    Still need to figure out a better way to record than this shabby webcam with noisy microphone.

    Played on a Madera M115

    Just a couple of beginner questions: in bar 3 where it goes from E to B back to E what is the preferred way of fretting this? I held the D string and kind of rolled my finger to push the A down and then rolled back but is this proper technique. Wondering if should try to use two fingers, lift , or try to stretch to D string 9th fret instead? I find all awkward, including how I went about it.

    Also I noticed in recording I have a tendency to rest my right pinky on pick guard. Not sure if this will be detrimental or not. Should I try to stop that?
  38. Marcelyn
    Wow, TNT, you can really move on that tune. I'll have to get a metronome out and see what you're up to.

    John, your mandolin really rings out in that recording and I like the second tune you added.

    Don, I don't know if this is right, but I chose to bar the two courses simultaneously with my index finger at that point so I could go back and forth quickly. Great job for two weeks in a row. You're sounding wonderful dispite the buzzing webcam.
  39. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    John, that was great! What chords did you use for accompaniment?
  40. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    Don, that was cleanly played!

    To answer your questions: if you can do the roll thing from the E on the D string, to the B on the A string, and get it cleanly, then I think it's a legit way to play it. I, personally, don't do it that way, but that doesn't mean my way is right!

    There are many opinions as to 'pinky planting'. From what I've read, what you've got on your mando, is more correctly called a 'finger rest' than a 'pick guard'. I've never played a mando with one of those, but it's so high up, I see that your finger 'resting' on it, would occur very easily. However, if you watch your video, your pinky seems planted there, and it seems that it is the 'base' from which your hand operates when picking. Some people can get that to work; however, I am of the school of thought, where my hand is basically free floating, my fingers curled under, and my aim is to have my picking motion come from my wrist (not twisting or rolling, but rather side to side, like the motion you would use, to tap a hardboiled egg with a spoon). Not that I always succeed... when I look at my videos, it seems I still am moving my elbow more than my wrist... but that is what I am aiming for! And, since that is the technique I'm trying to employ, it seems that planting a pinky would work against what I am aiming for.
  41. Shane Gibbons
    Shane Gibbons
    But what way DO ya play it Barbara???
  42. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    Don, you said you are recording this with a web cam. Do you have a digital camera that has a movie function? Most do, these days. I've recorded decent video using mine.
  43. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    Shane, are you asking how I'd pick Forty Pound Float, pick-direction-wise? Like you described... the first measures would be D D D DU | D D D D .....

    Or, are you asking about Don's question about going from the E on the D string, to the B on the A string, and back? I fret each individually, with my first finger, and just go from string to string.

    Or... some other question? I'm at my daughter's now, but I will try to record this when I get back home, probably next week! Then we can just watch and see!!
  44. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    Eddie, that was great on the mandola... and great on the OM, but I can see & hear your improvement over the last year and a half... I remember watching your video back then, and noticing the birds who seemed to be singing along with your rousing rendition! I hope that my 'new' video (whenever I do it) shows the same kind of improvement! Isn't that what we are all here for.... getting better!!!!
  45. Shane Gibbons
    Shane Gibbons
    Ha! I was asking how you dealt with Don's dilemma. The same movement was in Crested Hens as well, and I used the barre method but always ended up with a nasty buzz on the D string when I moved to fret the A string.
  46. Eddie Sheehy
    Thanks Barbara, seems like years ago...

    I cover both courses with the top part of my finger and "roll" off the notes.
  47. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    I know a lot of ya'll employ some way of fretting both strings at the same time, or with a roll, but I just can't seem to make that work!
  48. Tosh Marshall
    Tosh Marshall
    Great vids this week, and Eddie I agree with Barbara, those deep sounding instruments were really rousing.....I did try on the Mandocello, my fingers are so short!!!!!
  49. Marcelyn
    Eddie, there should be a rule against posting Sunny, outdoor California videos in the dead of winter. It's funny because I clicked on yours in reverse order and without reading your post first. When I listened to your first video I thought how nice and clean it sounded, but when I heard the second--I was amazed. It's encouraging to see where I might be in several years.

    Oh, and for anyone trying the one-finger on two courses method--When I first experimented with it, it really hurt. It surprised me because I was used to doing it on fiddle. But this was so uncomfortable, I almost asked about it on here to see whether I was trying something people don't do on mandolin. Then, after a day or two, I guess I'd built up a little more muscle and it felt fine. Go figure.
  50. ieatcrayons
    Thanks everyone I like the idea of pressing the two strings with same finger, although I find it extremely difficult to do. Much practice is needed here I imagine. I really think my current roll method is not going to work well if I ever manage to play anything reasonably fast.

    Finger rest makes sense. Shows what I know. Thing was there when I bought it. At the moment I find having my finger planted there gives me a good reference as to where my hand is. But I think you're right Barbara about the free floating wrist it seems like it will result in less problems long term, which I sort of suspected anyway. Had no idea I was even touching the thing but it turns out I'm so used to it it's going to take a bit of work to get away from. But better now than later. Think I might just remove the thing since it seems to cover part of one of the holes anyway.

    I had a digital camera that had video capabilities. It recently died and I replaced it with a nice and fancy SLR that incidentally doesn't, which I knew when I bought it but didn't care since in the six years or so my previous camera lasted I don't think I ever used the video ability. Go figure. Might have an odd other one or two around will have to look; probably going to have to go shopping; though at the very least I know I have a better quality microphone if only I could find it.
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