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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Jess A more session rudeness (415* d) RE: more session rudeness 17 Jun 08

I was thinking the same, Maryrrf. Shame that evrybody can't be just a tad more friendly and polite.

Interesting point from Bert though cos I've played in UK sessions for a long time and I'm not really familiar with his definitions - where I tend to go, most people sit down and I've never heard of anything referred to as a 'jam'. To me, sessions are when everybody joins in together. Singarounds are where you all take turns. If there's a PA involved then I guess it's an open mic although I've never actually partaken in one of them. Etiquette in what I think of as sessions is a delicately balanced thing - yes I think it's usually seen as good form to encourage shyer or less confident people to join in, but plenty of people who are musically confident are socially less so and it can be harder than it looks to break the ice with somebody you don't know. Lots of sessions I go to whether at festivals or pubs do not have a leader at all, but then again some do. Some leaders take that to mean inviting people to play and establishing some sort of order and maybe even taking turns. Some leaders will just sit back and let it all happen but will strike up a tune every time the whole thing falters to silence, just to keep some momentum going.

My take on the whole thing - there's a lot of geographical and personal variation in what makes a session, and all you can really do as a newcomer to any of them is sit back a while and try to get a feel for how this particular one is working - and if you don't like the feel of it, to quietly wander off and start one that's more to your taste elsewhere.

To all those who've stated that this thread has put you off the idea of UK sessions - please don't think that they're all full of upset and antagonism! In my experience that's pretty rare! And if any of you are ever passing through Sheffield, PM me and I'll try and direct you towards one that might suit your tastes, as we're lucky here to have a whole range so there's bound to be something for pretty much everybody...

all the best

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