Mudcat Café message #522835 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #37503   Message #522835
Posted By: GUEST,Don Meixner
07-Aug-01 - 04:01 PM
Thread Name: Celtic music on 5 string banjo
Subject: RE: Celtic music on 5 string banjo
This how it seems to me.....

Many of the tunes that Ken Perlman teaches are tunes of dual citizenship. That is to say they exist in both countries under the same name. Many of them are easily made to fit the Drp-thumb clawhammer and frailing styles used in the US. Typically tunes in 2/4 and 4/4 time fit these tempos. 3/4 time kinda bites for the Clawhammer style.

Tenor and plectrum styles lend them selves well to most time signatures because they are played more as a melody style on these instruments. Clawhammer is a rhythmic style that allows for some melody to sneak through. The drop thumb allows for more melody to sneak out.

I use a Five String in the Irish band I'm in and I play Frailing style for tunes that fit. I flat pick the banjo for the waltzes and jigs. This gives me a little more veratility in what I play which translates into not changing insruments as often. The added benefit of having it always in "Open G" tuning helps with my finger limitations.

I'm sure that just like in Appalachia, the Irish played their music on what ever instrument was available. So which ever you chose is historically. The style which you wish to play will determine the tool you use.

In any event, have fun with it.