It's great to be at a folk festival spending the day playing traditional tunes with fellow musicians. There's nothing better than joining in with a host of enthusiasts blasting out reels, jigs, hornpipes and polkas on accordions, banjos, concertinas, fiddles, flutes, mandolins, melodeons, pipes, tin whistles, bouzoukis, guitars and bodhráns, maybe even a harp or piano, on occasions. There can be a whole mix of players: youngsters and old hands, experts and novices, friends and strangers, professionals and amateurs, old-hands and newbies. Some players favour complicated tunes at speed, whilst others can only manage simple tunes slowly. For many players, sessioning at festivals means a change from the usual tunes they play at their local sessions, an annoyance for some, a breath of fresh air for others. For regular festival goers, it means playing with music buddies only seen once a year. For many it will be their first visit and don’t quite know what to expect.
Every session has a different flavour and is totally dependent on the musicians who turn up. Some sessions are organised by the festival and have a particular advertised theme. On the other hand, unofficial sessions on the festival fringe, where ground-rules are yet to be established, are rather more unpredictable and adventurous. To be fully involved in these sessions, you’ll need a good mix of tunes in your repertoire. Sessioneers who are willing to make compromises, find common ground and turn their hand to different music genres are a massive asset to these sessions and are well respected participants. If all goes well, some of the stronger players will make sure beginners get a chance to join in and that most players are able to play most of the time. However once the session gets cracking on, there can be no stopping it and beginners and the inexperienced will have to give way to the more seasoned players.
Some sessions can be quite specialist, others have a more inclusive feel and feature a wide variety of tunes. Whichever way the session goes, you’ll be sure to hear many tunes found within these pages. This book contains a diverse assortment of popular tunes, core repertoire heard at a typical festival session. The tunes range from relatively easy to fairly difficult. There are polkas, reels, rants, hornpipes, jigs, and waltzes from England, Ireland, Scotland, Northumberland and America, something to please everyone. A selection of these tunes will form the basis of many traditional music sessions, both at folk festivals and regular sessions throughout the year. This book provides an excellent learning facility for musicians who are making their first visit to a music session and also for those wishing to extend their repertoire. With these tunes under your belt you’ll be able to make a significant contribution to any traditional music session and have a great time.
Mally's Session Selection - Dave Mallinson
This book contains a diverse assortment of popular tunes, core repertoire heard at a typical traditional music session. The tunes range from relatively easy to fairly difficult. There are polkas, reels, rants, hornpipes, jigs, and waltzes from England, Ireland, Scotland and America, something to please everyone. A selection of these tunes will form the basis of many traditional music sessions, both at folk festivals and regular sessions throughout the year.