Week #80 ~ The Merry Blacksmith

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  1. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    This week's winner is The Merry Blacksmith, also known as Paddy on the Railroad, or Flags of Dublin. It is found in The Fiddler's Fakebook and O'Neil's Music of Ireland.

    Here is the abc from www.thesession.org

    X: 1
    T: Merry Blacksmith, The
    M: 4/4
    L: 1/8
    R: reel
    K: Dmaj
    |:AB|d2dA BAFA|ABdA BAFA|ABde fded|Beed egfe|
    d3A BAFA-|ABdA BAFA-|ABde fdec|dBAF D2:|
    |:fg|a2ag f2fe|d2dA BAFA-|ABde fded|Beed egfg|
    abag fgfe|dcdA BAFA|ABde fdec|dBAF D2:|
  2. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    Here is mine. I did this in Garage Band, and iMovie. Played on my Collings MT2O mandolin, and Petersen tenor guitar, playing rhythm, and melody the second time through. Experimented with some effects in my iMovie. I think it should be played somewhat faster than I'm doing it!

  3. Martin Whitehead
    Martin Whitehead
    Nice Barbara. And way to play free and loose with the space-time continuum.
  4. Marcelyn
    Who's scaring off the beginners now, Barbara? I really like the sound of your guitar and mandolin on melody together, just beautiful.
  5. Tosh Marshall
    Tosh Marshall
    Great stuff Barbara, that is fast enough for me!
  6. Manfred Hacker
    Manfred Hacker
  7. mculliton123
    Merry Blacksmith .tef file for SN & TABs
  8. Rob Fowler
    Rob Fowler
    Nice, Barbara! If I were to close my eyes I would think you were Jill with all those great triplets!
  9. mculliton123
    Barbara, for someone who posted, just a few months ago, that you had little experience playing rhythm, you certaintly nailed it. That Peterson TG sounds better every time I hear it. Well Done.
  10. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    Wow, thanks for ALL the compliments, ya'll!
  11. Jim Baker
    Jim Baker
    Very nice version Barbara.
  12. Michael Pastucha
    Michael Pastucha
    Love it Barbara!
  13. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    I actually found it very interesting that in the two videos, I hold the very differently sized & shaped instruments, at exactly the same angle!
  14. Jill McAuley
    Jill McAuley
    Lovely stuff Barbara - the triplets are sounding great!
  15. David Hansen
    David Hansen
    Very nice Barbara, that tenor of yours sounds great.

    Here's an older recording of The Merry Blacksmith + The Banshee played with a fiddler friend of mine.

  16. Michael Pastucha
    Michael Pastucha
    Always a treat to listen to you play...and this time you brought along a friend to more than double the pleasure. Hats off to you, sir.
  17. Bertram Henze
    Bertram Henze
    Blimey Barb! I guess that's how you'll look when I've had one too many - lovely reference version to play along with, though.

    That's the speed I am going to shoot for eventually, David, and tell your fiddler friend he's got that authentic feeling!
  18. Jill McAuley
    Jill McAuley
    Nice one, David - very lively that!

    I'll most likely be late submitting my version as I'm leaving the Vintage A in for a set up tomorrow and was told it'd be away from me for about a week - bah!
  19. jhuesgen
    Always hard to wait. You know it will come back from the setup sounding better and refreshed. Maybe record yourself humming the tune or an Acapella rendition to give us an idea of how it will sound in a week. I am leaving my current job for a new one on the 15th, so I will have extra time this week for music, so hopefully I can get the rust out of my fingers for guitar and learn this new tune on mando sooner then normal.
  20. Manfred Hacker
    Manfred Hacker
    Very nice David and Co.
    It would take me another year to bring my version up to this tempo. So I better post now what I have practiced today. All my tries to record a bouncier version have failed. But I have read that Reels can be played with less accentuation as well

  21. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    Manfred, that was superb; I don't see a need for it to be any bouncier!

    Ted Eschliman posted this quote from Evan Marshall today:

    ‎"Speed is a by-product of control. Control is never a by-product of speed."

    I think it's a bit unrealistic for us to 'learn' a tune in a day or two, to the point where it's a maximum speed and accuracy! I'd much rather be able to play it consistently, cleanly, and if it's something that I then play enough, eventually get it up to speed!
  22. Rob Fowler
    Rob Fowler
    DAMN that was as clean as freshly bleached sink=as clean as possible!

    Kind of a weird analogy but I just bleached our kitchen sink so it was fresh in my mind.

    If I could ever play that clean and fluid I will die a happy man!
  23. Jill McAuley
    Jill McAuley
    That was great Manfred! Your tone is awesome, super cleanly played and you don't want reels to be too bouncy, because then they can feel a bit hornpipe-y so I think your version is grand - well done to you!

    Great words of wisdom from Barbara and that Evan Marshall quote as well!
  24. Tosh Marshall
    Tosh Marshall
    David and Manfred, the bar is so high, I'll walk under it.........brilliant....
  25. Marcelyn
    Sehr gut gemacht, Manfred. I didn't clock your metronome clicks, but yours didn't sound that slow to me. Here's what I've been practicing so far on an Old Wave.

  26. Douglas McMullin
    Douglas McMullin
    Wow Marcelyn! Really nice playing and the mando sound is gorgeous.
  27. Grommet
    Sprightly performances one and all! Thank you for the inspiration.

  28. Michael Pastucha
    Michael Pastucha
    Many thanks for all wonderful performances from the talented mandolin pickers above. Here's my version of the Merry Blacksmith played on a Kentucky mandolin and backed up with my Simon & Patrick guitar tuned dadgad. (The guitar was added after recording the mandolin track and everything was synched up in iMovie.)

  29. Manfred Hacker
    Manfred Hacker
    Great, Marcy. As always, I admire your musicality and Old-Timey feel. By the way, where is your Gibson?
    Michael, very nice relaxed playing and great sound from the Kentucky.

    And many thanks for all the encouraging and kind words above.
  30. Bertram Henze
    Bertram Henze
    Wow what great versions all! Manfred (bouncy enough for a reel and with fine triplets!), Marcelyn and Stuche with such nice relaxed oldtimey versions (the latter actually with a melancholic gaze at the horizon like a coast-to-coast trucker).

    I am with Tosh here - I'll walk right under the bar. And what do I find behind it? The barmaid. Merry Blacksmith is often heard in a set with Maid Behind the Bar, so I added that as a bonus tune.

  31. Manfred Hacker
    Manfred Hacker
    Bertram, Sunday morning is a bit early for the bar It is only in Bavaria that we are entitled to Weizen beer on Sunday mornings

    Great version and playing, nevertheless.

    One correction: I didn't play TRIPLETS but QUINTUPLETS

    Actually, what I tried to play were short 5-stroke bursts of tremolo, each three 8ths long. I think one of these (accidentally) came out as a triplet.
  32. Bertram Henze
    Bertram Henze
    Thanks Manfred, the Bavarians have their Frühschoppen, but the miners of the Ruhr used to have it too. And so have the Irish. It's never too early.
    Sorry, I didn't actually count the strokes (not on a sunday morning...), just tend to call any fast trrrill that keeps a long note alive a triplet.
  33. Marcelyn
    Thanks, Manfred. I'm having a lot of fun with my A-3 in GDGD tuning at the moment. I really didn't intend to keep both mandolins, but unfortunately or fortunately--however you want to look at it--, they both have such a different and pleasant sound that I haven't been able to let one go.
  34. Marcelyn
    Ooo, I just listened to the new posts. Very nice set Bertram. It's funny, I've never heard those together, but I always mix up the titles--no idea why except they both start with an M. I'm going to try playing them together now.

    Micheal, really fun to hear as always. Do you choose between your mandolins on a whim or is there a method to your selection?
  35. Jill McAuley
    Jill McAuley
    Great stuff everyone! - I'm enjoying listening to them all as that way I can live vicariously thru you all since I find myself mandolin-less for a whole entire week!
  36. jhuesgen
    its Sunday and almost all the regulars have their videos posted already, gees. Guess I need to get working
  37. Michael Pastucha
    Michael Pastucha
    Marcelyn, there is a method to how to choose a mandolin for a particular tune. Find the one with the newest stings, get it nearly in tune and then use that one. Next step is to buy more mandolin strings... which I keep forgetting to do.

    Bertram, that glazed look comes from two hard weeks at work (it was political season and we've been printing a lot of campaign literature at the last minute) and trying to concentrate long enough to get thru the 3 or 4 times I played the song. Relaxed version? Well, it could have something to do with that Maid Behind the Bar you played in your set. Really nice, do you have her number, I mean ABC?
  38. Don Grieser
    Don Grieser
    Really amazing that you all have it learned already, and recorded so well too. I must be a slow learner.
  39. Michael Pastucha
    Michael Pastucha
    Jill, hang in there! Just think of all the music you will make when you get your new mandolin back! (And be sure to post some of it here.)

    Over the years I've decided that one mandolin is not enough so I've got a backup in case of emergency (the Kentucky). Lately it seems the old Gibson never leaves the house because I always worry about it whenever I take it anywhere. Decided I needed a third really loud mandolin for the picking parties I go to and have therefore ordered a new National Resophonic mandolin. They are rugged, loud and have an really interesting tonal quality -- from really mellow to extremely edgy. The best part is my wife agreed with my logic. Now I'm waiting kind of like Jill for the thing to get built.

    I'd recommend that everyone rush right out, if they haven't already, and stimulate the world's economy by acquiring at least three mandolin or mandolin related instruments. It's really your patriotic duty...

    Don, I often don't feel confident with a song until I've played it in public and have known it at least 6 months. So all of the songs I've posted recently are still in the learning stage -- the video is just another step along the way. If you asked me to play one of the earlier posts I could maybe do 2 or 3 songs off the top of my head, the others I'd have to look at the music.
  40. Jill McAuley
    Jill McAuley
    Ah, I'm dreaming of when I can have a multiple mandolin household again, and a tenor guitar would be a welcome addition as well!
  41. Marcelyn
    I knew this one on whistle already, Don. It came together more quickly because of that.

    I hear you, Jill. I know I'd hate getting used to the scale length, but Barbara's videos lately make me really like the idea of a tenor guitar.

    I keep forgetting to ask you barbara... When you play rhythm, are you keeping the guitar tuned to GDAE?
  42. Jill McAuley
    Jill McAuley
    Marcelyn - scale length wise, the Fletcher Tenortone tenors seem more manageable for me, and I find their smaller body dimensions much more comfortable as well - now I just need to find a way to get one!
  43. Bertram Henze
    Bertram Henze
    Stuche, this is how to reach the Maid Behind the Bar:
    X: 1
    T: Maid Behind The Bar, The
    M: 4/4
    L: 1/8
    R: reel
    K: Dmaj
    |:FAAB AFED|FAAB ABde|fBBA Bcde|fBBA BcdA|
    |:faab afde|fdad fd d2|efga beef|gebe gfeg|
    fgaf bfaf|defd e2 de|fBBA BcdB|AFEF D4:|

    I must admit that I was speculating on Merry Blacksmith being the winner and started practising on Thursday already. It felt like being an investment bankster...
  44. Douglas McMullin
    Douglas McMullin
    I will take a stab. For some reason I was liking this one at a nice slow tempo. I really like the sound of the Old Wave when I can let the notes ring.

  45. CelticDude
    Okay, here's my take, followed by the Reel of Mullinavat:

    It's a tune I've known on whistle a long time, and have been trying on the mando for a few months. Fun to play it on both together. Back in the band days, we did these tunes along with Miss McLeod's as the 3rd tune.
  46. Marcelyn
    I'm a sucker for sustain too, Douglas. Really pretty variations. I'll have to add those to my version.

    Woah, CD, that was amazing. I love the sound of whistle and mandolin together, and that was a fantastic harmony part.
  47. Jill McAuley
    Jill McAuley
    Doug- your Old Wave sounds awesome on this!

    Dana - great stuff, really love the whistle as well!
  48. Douglas McMullin
    Douglas McMullin
    I thought I would try it again on my other mandolin and at a faster tempo. I pretty much played it the same way the second time around, though the faster it gets the goofier my expressions become and I bob my head like a metronome!

  49. Douglas McMullin
    Douglas McMullin
    Celticdude, I really like the mandolin/whistle combination. What is the lower frequency instrument? Tenor guitar?
  50. Eddie Sheehy
    I'm still practicing - my mind only hears this tune at one speed and I am far removed from it... but you got it in that post Dana... excellent stuff.
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