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Thread: Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

  1. #1

    Default Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

    Greetings- I'm not sure if this is the appropriate place to post this or not. I was referred to this list by a member (I think - he/she did not give me her/his member name). If this is not the correct forum for this thread, please let me know where I should post it.
    I'm a violist, and I just finished a fairly large collection (450+ ) of fiddle tunes that I transcribed and transposed into alto clef (and usually down an octave) to play on viola. If you read alto clef, they might be helpful. The collection has a New England contra dance slant - lots of contra dance tunes and waltzes. If anyone is interested, you can email me, or access the PDFs and/or zip files in a Google Drive folder at the the following link:
    https://drive.google.com/open?id=1eu...bwc5O1h31_bBaQ
    The collection is for free, and the collection, the files, and the link can all be shared with anyone, as long as it's for free - no reproduction in whole or in part for any profit of any kind. Some of the tunes are under copyright, and the composers and copyright holders allowed me to include the tunes without paying royalties because I am not making anything from the collection.
    There are two versions: a large format with, usually, one to three tunes per page; and a small format with more like four to six tunes per page.
    I *would* appreciate knowing who chooses to download the collection and the general area you are from. I'm from Brattleboro, in southeastern Vermont.
    I hope you enjoy the tunes.

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  3. #2
    Orrig Onion HonketyHank's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

    Thank you for your "labor of love" and thank you for making this collection available. I intend to use this primarily as a tool for learning to read alto clef (and to have fun while doing that).
    New to mando? Click this link -->Newbies to join us at the Newbies Social Group.

    Just send an email to rob.meldrum@gmail.com with "mandolin setup" in the subject line and he will email you a copy of his ebook for free (free to all mandolincafe members).

    My website and blog: honketyhank.com

  4. #3
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    Default Re: Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

    Thank you. I play mandolin and fiddle but have just gotten a mandola. Why not start learning alto clef while I'm at it? I'll be checking out those tunes. I live in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont.

  5. #4
    Registered User Louise NM's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

    You, sir, are a gentleman and a scholar. This is fabulous.

    I will be downloading and using this extensively. i play mandolin, mandola, violin, and viola, and have recently started playing with a contradance group. I've talked with the leader about adding some viola/mandola to some of the tunes. Having these typeset, in the right clef, attention paid to voicing, is fabulous. I'm even more impressed that they are laid out with wider margins on the appropriate side—when copied two-sided—to add a spiral binding or put them in a three-ring binder.

    You might want to post this in the CBOM forum here too.

    For the record, I'm in Northern New Mexico.

  6. #5

    Default Re: Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

    Great collection, thanks.
    I don't read notation very well, but may be able to automatically convert it to tab. I could send you a copy if you like, assuming I'm able to do it.
    Thanks again.
    Oh, I live at the moment in France near Lyon -20 years, but I'm not from here.

  7. #6

    Default Re: Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

    thanks for all the hard work, I play five string and viola, so this should be fun. I live in delaware

  8. #7

    Default Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

    Greetings- I think this might be of interest to those on this forum. The collection is not exclusively tunes from the forum genres, but is predominately from them.
    I'm a violist, and I just finished a fairly large collection (450+ ) of fiddle tunes that I transcribed and transposed into alto clef (and usually down an octave) to play on viola. If you read alto clef, they might be helpful. The collection has a New England contra dance slant - lots of contra dance tunes and waltzes. If anyone is interested, you can email me, or access the PDFs and/or zip files in a Google Drive folder at the the following link:
    https://drive.google.com/open?id=1eu...bwc5O1h31_bBaQ
    The collection is for free, and the collection, the files, and the link can all be shared with anyone, as long as it's for free - no reproduction in whole or in part for any profit of any kind. Some of the tunes are under copyright, and the composers and copyright holders allowed me to include the tunes without paying royalties because I am not making anything from the collection.
    There are two versions: a large format with, usually, one to three tunes per page; and a small format with more like four to six tunes per page.
    I *would* appreciate knowing who chooses to download the collection and the general area you are from. I'm from Brattleboro, in southeastern Vermont.
    I hope you enjoy the tunes.

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  10. #8

    Default Fiddle tunes in alto clef - free collection

    Greetings- I think this might be of interest to those on this forum. I posted this first on the General Mandolin Discussions forum, and a member suggested posting to this forum.
    I'm a violist, and I just finished a fairly large collection (450+ ) of fiddle tunes that I transcribed and transposed into alto clef (and usually down an octave) to play on viola. If you read alto clef, they might be helpful. The collection has a New England contra dance slant - lots of contra dance tunes and waltzes. If anyone is interested, you can email me, or access the PDFs and/or zip files in a Google Drive folder at the the following link:
    https://drive.google.com/open?id=1eu...bwc5O1h31_bBaQ
    The collection is for free, and the collection, the files, and the link can all be shared with anyone, as long as it's for free - no reproduction in whole or in part for any profit of any kind. Some of the tunes are under copyright, and the composers and copyright holders allowed me to include the tunes without paying royalties because I am not making anything from the collection.
    There are two versions: a large format with, usually, one to three tunes per page; and a small format with more like four to six tunes per page.
    I *would* appreciate knowing who chooses to download the collection and the general area you are from. I'm from Brattleboro, in southeastern Vermont.
    I hope you enjoy the tunes.

  11. The following members say thank you to rpalmer for this post:


  12. #9

    Default Re: Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

    Thank you for the offer, atsunrise, but I don't read tab, and I only want to keep track of one version of the collection. Ralph

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  14. #10
    Registered User bbcee's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

    @rpalmer, thank you 100x for your effort in making this resource available. I live in the Costa Brava in Spain.

    @atsunrise, being a non-reading mandola player, I would be very interested in tab versions of these. I will PM you as well.

  15. #11
    Dan Scullin dscullin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

    Hi rpalmer, the URL is not working. I get this when I click on the link... "The requested URL was not found on this server. That’s all we know." -from Google. Thanks for trying to post though.
    Dan Scullin
    Louisville, KY

  16. #12

    Default Re: Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

    Hi, dscullin - thanks for letting me know. Try this:
    https://drive.google.com/open?id=1eu...bwc5O1h31_bBaQ
    The link got truncated somehow.
    Ralph

  17. #13

    Default Re: Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

    I tried the new link, and it works.
    Ralph

  18. #14

    Default Re: Fiddle tunes in alto clef - free collection

    The above link is not working. Use :
    https://drive.google.com/open?id=1eu...bwc5O1h31_bBaQ
    Sorry for the problem.
    Ralph

  19. #15
    Dan Scullin dscullin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

    The link now works. Thanks
    Dan Scullin
    Louisville, KY

  20. #16
    Registered User DougC's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fiddle tunes in alto clef - free collection

    Quote Originally Posted by rpalmer View Post
    The above link is not working. Use :
    https://drive.google.com/open?id=1eu...bwc5O1h31_bBaQ
    Sorry for the problem.
    Ralph
    Hi Ralph, it's Doug from Minneapolis. I'm going to download the files because it will be a way to practice 'viola clef'. I'm the author of the Saint Paul Slow Sessiun Tune Book, now out of print. So I may know many of these tunes beforehand. Hopefully it will help, ha, ha. Are these tunes in the Portland Collection?
    Thanks
    P.S. The file works and my question about the Portland Collection is answered. Now I am wondering if you have the tunes as an ABC file? And wow, there are a lot of tunes there!

  21. #17
    Orrig Onion HonketyHank's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

    One of the things I discovered as a new mandola player is that when you play fiddle tunes, most of which seem to be in the keys of G, D, A, you are faced with that pesky F#, and more often than not that almost as pesky C#, down on the bass strings. This can lead to some interesting left hand challenges on a longer scale mandola. One of the things I have done, and it probably can be called a crutch, is to tune the strings to DGDA instead of CGDA. Many older fiddle tunes don't go lower than D and if they do you can fake something. But eliminating that 6th fret stretch on the lowest string does help for my old less than limber fingers.

    My 16.5" scale mandola has been in the shop for new frets and in the mean time I have been practicing a new Celtic tune on my old 18.5" scale waldzither tuned like a mandola. DGDA really helped. Not sure what I will do when the mandola comes back. We'll see.

    Thanks again for the collection.
    New to mando? Click this link -->Newbies to join us at the Newbies Social Group.

    Just send an email to rob.meldrum@gmail.com with "mandolin setup" in the subject line and he will email you a copy of his ebook for free (free to all mandolincafe members).

    My website and blog: honketyhank.com

  22. #18
    Registered User Martin Jonas's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

    Quote Originally Posted by HonketyHank View Post
    One of the things I have done, and it probably can be called a crutch, is to tune the strings to DGDA instead of CGDA. Many older fiddle tunes don't go lower than D and if they do you can fake something. But eliminating that 6th fret stretch on the lowest string does help for my old less than limber fingers.

    My 16.5" scale mandola has been in the shop for new frets and in the mean time I have been practicing a new Celtic tune on my old 18.5" scale waldzither tuned like a mandola. DGDA really helped. Not sure what I will do when the mandola comes back. We'll see.
    Not sure about DGDA, but playing in DAEB (one full step up from CGDA) is a pretty common approach to playing fiddle tunes on mandola -- same fingering as on mandolin, shifted by one course and sounding an octave lower. Instead of retuning all strings one step up, you can just put a capo on the second fret. Also helps with the finger stretch on longer mandolas such as your waldzither.

    Martin

  23. #19

    Default Re: Fiddle tunes in alto clef - free collection

    Hi, Doug. There are 450+ tunes. In case you didn't notice, there's an "index" of alternative titles between the introductory materials and the tunes themselves. I do not have the tunes as an ABC file. I used to use ABC a lot. Then I started transcribing some classical music, and ABC wouldn't handle some things I needed to do. I switched to two cooperating free open source programs -- LilyPond and Frescobaldi. They are very flexible, and I think they do a beautiful job. Also, I'm not sure I could have produced the small format with ABC, and I *am* sure that doing three collections simultaneously (large format, small format, and personal - which has copyrighted tunes I couldn't get permission to include) was faster and easier with LilyPond/Frescobaldi. Enjoy!

  24. #20
    Administrator Mandolin Cafe's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

    Three identical threads merged. Everyone likes good content but it's not the difficult to find subject matter here. Please don't post multiples in the future.

  25. #21
    Registered User usqebach's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

    Ralph,

    Thanks so much for this! I'm from the metro Atlanta area and serve as a "consultant" to a fiddle group attached to a large high school orchestra. Once a week we have 30 or so high-schoolers show up after school to learn traditional fiddle tunes. All orchestral instruments are represented along with some other instruments. The orchestra director is a classically-trained violist and this fiddle group is as a result of his efforts. "What do do with the violas" has been a significantly limiting issue given my lack of ability to convert tunes for them. We've tried:
    1) Bringing 5-string fiddles (I've got two) and mandolins (I've got several)
    2) Playing A and D tunes down a fifth (I don't care for that) and G tunes as traditional
    3) Playing "low" parts as is and "high" parts down an octave.

    While I'm sure there is still some work to be done to meld these tunes to the version I know and we play, I think this is a tremendous resource and another arrow in our quiver.

    If you are going to fiddle hell this year, let me know. I'd love to thank you personally over a beverage of your choice!

    Thanks again!

    Jim Sims
    Jim Sims

    " Amateurs practice until they get it right - professionals practice until they can't get it wrong."
    "Me?... I don't practice."

    iiimandolin#19
    1917 Gibson A-1 Pumpkintop

    www.sedentaryramblers.com

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    Registered User DougC's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fiddle tunes in alto clef - free collection

    Quote Originally Posted by rpalmer View Post
    Hi, Doug. There are 450+ tunes. In case you didn't notice, there's an "index" of alternative titles between the introductory materials and the tunes themselves. I do not have the tunes as an ABC file. I used to use ABC a lot. Then I started transcribing some classical music, and ABC wouldn't handle some things I needed to do. I switched to two cooperating free open source programs -- LilyPond and Frescobaldi. They are very flexible, and I think they do a beautiful job. Also, I'm not sure I could have produced the small format with ABC, and I *am* sure that doing three collections simultaneously (large format, small format, and personal - which has copyrighted tunes I couldn't get permission to include) was faster and easier with LilyPond/Frescobaldi. Enjoy!
    Ralph, we lead 'parallel lives'. I used ABC to print my book. Later I was involved in classical music and went to Finale notation program. Most of my questions indeed were answered by reading your index and introduction, however I'd like to learn more about you.

    I think we are not the only ones doing this sort of thing. There is a woman who regularly shares Italian music on mandolin cafe as well as some others who share Irish / Scottish music and more sharing some classical and jazz tunes. We are in good company here!
    Decipit exemplar vitiis imitabile

  28. #23

    Default Re: Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

    Quote Originally Posted by usqebach View Post
    Ralph,

    Thanks so much for this! I'm from the metro Atlanta area and serve as a "consultant" to a fiddle group attached to a large high school orchestra. Once a week we have 30 or so high-schoolers show up after school to learn traditional fiddle tunes. All orchestral instruments are represented along with some other instruments. The orchestra director is a classically-trained violist and this fiddle group is as a result of his efforts. "What do do with the violas" has been a significantly limiting issue given my lack of ability to convert tunes for them. We've tried:
    1) Bringing 5-string fiddles (I've got two) and mandolins (I've got several)
    2) Playing A and D tunes down a fifth (I don't care for that) and G tunes as traditional
    3) Playing "low" parts as is and "high" parts down an octave.

    While I'm sure there is still some work to be done to meld these tunes to the version I know and we play, I think this is a tremendous resource and another arrow in our quiver.

    If you are going to fiddle hell this year, let me know. I'd love to thank you personally over a beverage of your choice!

    Thanks again!

    Jim Sims
    Thanks for the message, Jim Sims. Sounds like you're already doing a lot for the violas. I'm afraid most of the tunes in my collection are simply doubling the fiddle, down an octave. I've also done some high/low part swaps, too, like you do. It is nice to have a few tunes with harmonies.
    All the best, Ralph

  29. #24
    Registered User Martin Jonas's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

    Quote Originally Posted by rpalmer View Post
    Thanks for the message, Jim Sims. Sounds like you're already doing a lot for the violas. I'm afraid most of the tunes in my collection are simply doubling the fiddle, down an octave. I've also done some high/low part swaps, too, like you do. It is nice to have a few tunes with harmonies.
    All the best, Ralph
    Try the books by Evelyn Tiffany-Castiglioni. Hundreds of traditional (and non-traditional) fiddle tunes, all with melody and two harmony lines (usually one in the viola range and one in the cello range) as well as accompaniment chords. The books are all in treble clef, but Evelyn may be able to provide them in alto and bass clef as well if you ask her. The books are extremely good value, but Evelyn has also made many tunes available for free here on the Cafe. See: Link

    Martin

  30. #25
    Registered User usqebach's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fiddle tunes for viola or mandola - free collection

    I'm sure this will help. While we are adamant that we teach the tunes by ear, as we only have one day per week with them, and not every kid comes every week, we do provide sheet music as a back up. Having this for the viola players will really help.

    Thanks again!
    Jim Sims

    " Amateurs practice until they get it right - professionals practice until they can't get it wrong."
    "Me?... I don't practice."

    iiimandolin#19
    1917 Gibson A-1 Pumpkintop

    www.sedentaryramblers.com

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