Traditional Irish Session
Every Sunday Afternoon
3:00 - 6:00 pm
The Sunday session is a fun, relaxed gathering where players of Irish traditional music can come together and share good tunes and good conversation. It is above all meant to be fun, although we do take the music seriously.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
"What is an Irish session?"
An Irish session is where several players get together in an informal setting to play Irish traditional dance music.
"What is Irish traditional dance music?"
Irish music is made up of tunes, not songs (songs have words). The tunes have a defined structure to allow people to dance to it. The tunes have an "A" part and a "B" part. Once through the tune usually consists of playing the "A" part twice and the "B" part twice. Tunes are usually played three times through, and three tunes played back to back is called a set. Also, everyone plays in unison. There are no solo breaks or improvising.
"What tunes do you play?"
Good question! There are supposedly over 14,000 Irish tunes. No one knows them all (except Ian Varley) Each player has built up their own repertoire of tunes over years and years of playing and practicing. In a session, a player will start a set of three tunes that hopefully someone else also knows and will join in. The music is the best when a lot of players know the tune and join in together. You never know what tunes will pop up in a session.
"How do you go about learning tunes?"
Learn one tune and learn it well. Play it again and again until your dog runs from the room when you start playing it again. Learn a second tune. Keep going. Never stop. Go to sessions. Write down tune names. Bring a recorder and record tunes that you hear that you would like to learn. Go home and practice behind the woodshed for many years. Learn 20 tunes that everyone knows and learn one tune that no one knows. Does a tune come up in a session and it seems like everyone knows it but you? That's a good one to learn.
"What if I'm not good enough to play in a session?"
Well, it's true that established sessions in pubs can be very fast and intimidating (but really fun and friendly too!) However, the Fiddler's Green sunday session is a perfect place to play in a relaxed way. We play at slower tempos, and the downloadable tune list below is a great resource to figure out what tunes to learn. If you're not sure if you're up for joining us you can always just come and listen.
"How does your tune list work? Do I need to learn only those tunes?"
The tune list below is only just a sample of popular tunes that you can get started with. These are tunes that should be pretty well known everywhere Irish tunes are being played. You can click on the link below to stream or download all the audio files of these tunes. Each month we will highlight one or two "Tunes of the Month" from the list. We'll just make sure that those tunes get played at each session that month at an easy to moderate tempo to help people learn the tunes.
"What if I want more formal instruction?"
We have instructors at Fiddler's Green who can set up private lessons with you for $25 per half hour. Just call 512-452-3900 and we'll give you all the info. Also, you should check out the O'Flaherty's Irish Music Retreat. The link is below.
"Tunes of the Month" Schedule
These tunes will be taught and reviewed throughout the month
April - Club Ceili / Mouse in the Cupboard
May - Kitty Lie Over / Frost is all Over / Hare in tyhe Corn
June - Miss McCloud's / Sligo Maid
Click this link to access the soundfiles:
You can find the sheet music to these tunes at the O'Flaherty's Irish Music Retreat website. CLICK HERE
These tracks are courtesy of the Traditional Irish Music Education Society http://irishtradmusic.org
and the O'Flaherty's Irish Music Retreat http://www.oflahertyretreat.org
If you really want to learn Irish music and have a blast doing it, check out the O'Flaherty's Retreat!
IRISH TUNE SETS
Here are some suggestions for playing the tunes in sets. Note: not all the tunes listed below are on the soundfile page. You'll have to dig them up on your own, or record them at a session
1. Aaron’s key / Calliope House
2. Bold Doherty / Eavesdropper
3. Club Ceili / Mouse in the Cupboard
4. Black Rogue / Kerfunken / Spotted Dog
5. Lilting Banshee / Brendan Tonra’s / Jimmy ward’s
6. Behind the Haystack / Carraroe / Geese in the Bog
7. Humours of Glendart / Blarney Pilgrim / Rolling Wave
8. Cook in the Kitchen / Pipe on the Hob
9. Rambling Pitchfork / Tobin’s Favorite
10. Kitty Lie Over / Frost is all Over / Hare in the Corn
11. The Rolling Waves / Rose in the Heather / Out on the Ocean
12. Goat on the Green / Maid in the Meadow / Out on the Town / Roaring Barmaid
1. Swinging on a Gate / Father Kelly’s
2. Roscommon / Galtee Ranger / Fermoy Lasses
3. Bank of Ireland / Crock of Gold
4. Dick Gossip’s / Humours of Ballyconnell / Last Night’s Fun
5. Miss McCloud’s / Sligo Maid
6. Gravel Walk / High Reel
7. Cooley’s / Wise Maid
8. Silver Spear / Earl’s Chair / Musical Priest
9. Spootiskerry / Fantastic Reel / Road to Glanntain
10. Castle Kelly / Cup of Tea / Rip the Calico
1. Britches Full of Stitches / Bill Sullivan’s / Kerry Polka
2. Rock Chapel Polka / Lord Seafort’s / Dripsey
1. Fig for a Kiss / Na Cheannabhain bhana / Fox hunter’s
LIST OF BEGINNING TUNES
Just can't get enough Irish Sessions?
Here are the other sessions going on around town:
Tuesdays 7:00 - 9:30pm The LT corner Pub in Lakeway http://ltcornerpub.com
Thursdays 7:00 - 11:30pm B.D.Riley's Irish Pub at Mueller https://bdrileys.com/aldrich/
Sundays 3:00 - 6:00 pm Fiddler's Green Music Shop
Sundays 7:00 - 11:30pm B.D. Riley's Irish Pub on Sixth Street https://bdrileys.com/sixthstreet/