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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
BigDaddy Solo Unaccompanied Singing and Songs (143* d) RE: Solo Unaccompanied Singing and Songs 24 Aug 00


GUEST,Russ...You summed it up rather nicely. I do use a bodhran (judiciously) for accompaniment on "Itches in my Britches," "Up Among the Heather," " The Scotsman," etc. And sing with our guitar player/vocalist (and sometimes piper) on things like "Drunken Sailor," Wild Mountain Thyme," "Broom of the Cowdenowes" or "The Mermaid." But prefer unaccompanied on the old ballads and of course sea shanteys. I learned the early stuff ("Barbara Allen," "Gypsy Davy," "Devil and the Farmer's Wife," etc.) from the singing of my mother and her aunts. They had learned these from their mother, and so on. Although my mother was a marvelous piano player, she would never have dreamed of accompanying herself or anyone else on these songs. It just wasn't the way they were learned or passed along. That's not to say they should never be done any other way. It's a personal thing. Along these lines, I'm currently putting together a one-man performance piece based on the various occupations of all my known ancestors (farmer, soldier, weaver, cooper, cobbler, blacksmith, etc.). This will be done a capella, though I may play a tune between songs (on guitar, fiddle or tin whistle). I think a big reason I'm doing this to prove to myself that it can be done without accompaniment and keep an audience's attention. Jay


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