Groovy in the Set List


We rehearsed last evening and remarkably, we’ve managed to get some excellent structures in play for intros and transitions.  Here’s the list we attempted to get through:

Cooley’s / Wise Maid – reels
Rose in the Heather / Morrison’s – jigs
Brosna / O’Keefe’s – slides
Banish Misfortune / Lark in the Morning – jigs
Merry Blacksmith / Star of Munster – reels
Swinging on the Gate / The Wind That Shakes the Barley – reels
Morning Dew – reel
Man of the House / My Love Is In America – reels
Maggie in the Woods – polka
Bank of Ireland / Musical Priest – reels played slowly
Southwind – waltz
Flowers of Edinburg / Off to California – hornpipes
Kid on the Mountain / Fig for a Kiss – slip jigs
The Snowy Path / Garech’s Wedding – slip jigs
Humours of Ennistymon – jig

Some of the discussion in between the tunes centered on why so many of the sets ended with tunes in a minor key.  One response: “Because it sounds groovy.”  Okay, that response sounded a bit vapid but it was already out of my mouth and yeah, that hipster, 70’s verbiage was acceptable for the group.  Then we played Man of the House, a minor key tune, followed by My Love Is In America in D-major.  The set didn’t fit the ‘groovy’ pattern but it worked pretty well.  The discussion then centered on whether or not this set works well because of the ‘crooked’ nature of Man of the House.  Crooked tunes often get a good bit of discussion.  The discussion of crooked tunes in  seems to consider first and foremost is there is a change in the time signature for the tune, for example moving from 6/8 to 9/8 (jig to slip jig).  Other discussion considered the addition of beats to ‘regular’ tunes.  Some our group comes from the American Old Timey idiom.  There are plenty examples of ‘crooked’ in that tradition with extra beats or even added measures (9 measures in the A part followed by 8 measures in the B part).  The consensus for our group was that we would consider ‘crooked’ any tune that didn’t follow the common, straight-forward 16-bars composition (often 8-bars repeated then followed by another section of 16-bars).  Man of the House is simply a tune of 16-bars in one section.  It goes quickly and is an interesting tune in its own right but crooked?  Here it is as published by Vashon Celtic Tunes:

Man of the House Reel


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