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The Bruce
10-06-2009, 06:05 PM
Just happen to be wondering why the first note of Mairi's Wedding is a low G in the pipe music, but when the song is either sung or played on the accordian or fiddle, the first three notes would all ?be the tonic?

phinson
10-06-2009, 06:32 PM
I've seen a setting...don't remember where...that starts with low A and a taorluath to low A instead of the usual low G, low A and birl to low A.

Paul Hinson

Celtophile32
10-06-2009, 07:09 PM
I was perplexed by this when I first encountered the pipe arrangement that starts with lowG, since, like you, I "hear" the song as starting on low A. I decided it's what I call "phrasing", ie, a way of re-arranging the notes that creates a variation, but still captures the feel of the tune. If you play the low G version smoothly and cleanly, it begins to sound "right" after a while. That's my explanation.

Heatherbelle
10-06-2009, 09:38 PM
Yes, I wondered if someone somewhere sometime wrote it down with a G and it just stuck, like many things do. The way I know the song it starts Step we Gaily, AAAB.

John Blunt
10-06-2009, 10:01 PM
I had another thought. In choir, when we sometimes have a beginning note that is at one end of the range, we sometimes hit what the director calls a "Braille start." It's kind of a slide from almost the note to the actual note. Sometimes you hear singers start with almost the start note on the vocalized "Oh,...." It's kind of a gather that gets all the voices to the beginning and the song (in this case a song) begins.

JMB

acadianpiper
10-07-2009, 01:39 AM
I've seen a setting...don't remember where...that starts with low A and a taorluath to low A instead of the usual low G, low A and birl to low A.

Paul Hinson

The setting starting with low A and taorluath is the one I learned more than 50 years ago. I don't recall hearing the tune played on the pipes any other way back then. This setting is found in The United States Bicentennial Collection of Bagpipe Music, Volume I compiled by Donald Varella, p. 33. Since the first volume of the Bicentennial Collection wasn't published until 1976 and I first learned the tune in 1958, I obviously didn't learn the setting from that book. I couldn't tell you where the setting I learned was published, though.

bob864
10-07-2009, 06:28 AM
Yes, I wondered if someone somewhere sometime wrote it down with a G and it just stuck, like many things do. The way I know the song it starts Step we Gaily, AAAB.


You know, the rhythm is different in the low-g first version.

In the singing/fiddle version, the tune goes A--AA-B, etc., whereas in the pipe version we start GAA---B

I've been wondering who made the change, and why. Maybe to make it into a march.

Patrick McLaurin
10-07-2009, 07:33 AM
I've been wondering who made the change, and why. Maybe to make it into a march.

I believe the low G setting got started somewhere in the british military piping scene, as the oldest printed version I've seen with this change is in Scots Gaurds, if I remember correctly; though, I may be thinking of another book.

oldfingers
10-07-2009, 07:39 AM
Back in the 60's I learned it with LA taorluath LA and have always played it that way

TwitchyFingers
10-07-2009, 12:28 PM
Sorry, but the Low G is just plain wrong. Just my opinion, but good Lord it's wrong!

SmiseGander
10-07-2009, 02:30 PM
I remember seeing the sheet music for the first time with the Low G beginning after playing it for years with the Low A Taorluath Low A. I thought to myself, wow, that's different... Hmm, I wonder how it sounds... tried it a few times to wrap my ears around it... yup, different... eh, I'll stay with the way I play it.

I think it follows the original tune closer with the Low A, so it seems to fit better to my ears... of course, I could just be accustomed to hearing it that way.


'Smise

Klondike Waldo
10-07-2009, 07:06 PM
Some of the sung versions I've heard have low F# as the pick-up note which would make the G particularly grating