Iron Broo playing a traditional music session in Charlie’s living room in Aberdeen. (I’ll point out – For performances at wedding venues we are usually dressed up in more formal attire)
The tunes are The Headlands (R.Cooper) / Miss Linda MacFarlane (R. Brock)
Brendan O’Leary on mandolin, Fred Wilkinson on bouzouki, Charlie Abel on accordion.
We filmed this on 25th January 2016, Robert Burns Night. We played this impromptu after having spent the afternoon filming with James Matthews for a SKY News piece. He had us playing in the back of his car while he drove round Aberdeen asking about the oil industry and its economic influence in Aberdeen. It’s pretty tricky filming trad ceilidh music in a moving car. There were 4 of us playing. I’ll post the news piece if I can get it later.
These traditional music session tunes are great for a Gay Gordons ceilidh dance or a Grand March at a wedding.
This filmed at Iron Broo HQ in the living room. In front of a nice cosy log burner on a cold January day. Much needed heat to get the fingers moving.
Old Traditional Session Music lives on
3 Classic hornpipes. The Boys of Bluehill – Harvest Home – The Trumpet Hornpipe. You might recognise the last tune from the old tv programme ‘Captain Pugwash’.
“The Boys of Blue Hill” has to be one of my all-time favourite hornpipes. It was one of the first traditional session tunes I ever learned. I loved the way Mick Foster played it and when I started playing the accordion I would listen to his cassette over and over again trying to imitate his masterful playing. The tune flows well and sits back and begs for ornamentation. The Irish traditional music session style being particularly prevalent in twiddly notes that I happen to enjoy. We used to play this tune as a dance for a Canadian Barndance, I found it worked well with younger people. It’s not strictly correct for a Canadian Barndance as the tempo and feel are different from what is expected for a traditional ceilidh version. We liked the tune so much we played it anyway. We had a few snide remarks from purists and decided to stick with the more traditional two-four marches and save our selves a lot of hassle.
Good Trad music lives forever.
I still definitely play these tunes for a concert set or for our own amusement. I’ll even play them if I go to a traditional music session in a pub with other musicians. Sometimes certain navel-gazing musicians get snobby about playing old well kent traditional session music tunes but I am not one of them. Playing familiar stuff is good in a session as everyone can join in. There is a good reason why some of these old tunes have stood the test of time and been played for generations. They are in fact, great tunes!