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Music Discuss specific tunes, the writing of tunes, other questions, concerns, etc. related specifically to the music or music books.

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Old 01-10-2019, 07:31 AM   #1
Kevin
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Default Music for Pipes and other instruments

Hi,

I am guessing this is a long shot but has anyone run into any published collections of music arranged for multiple instrument voices including pipes? SSP and fiddle is what I am really looking for but I would be interested to hear about any other collections as well.

I have seen the LBPS collection of duets (the blue book), which includes arrangements for multiple pipes (two SSP in A or SSP in A plus SSP in D). Fiddles can play one of those voices but the limited range doesn't make for very full use of the instrument (fiddle).

Best regards,
Kevin

Last edited by Kevin; 01-10-2019 at 07:32 AM. Reason: typo
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Old 01-10-2019, 10:08 AM   #2
Adam Sanderson
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Default Re: Music for Pipes and other instruments

Hi Kevin, I think this post might be better suited to the smallpipes section, but I'll leave it here in the meantime.

The LPBS Session Tunes (the Orange Book) gives 68 tunes with guitar chords, which is a good start.

Matt Seattle has a book called Ower the Dunion which states on the cover is for "Pipes, Fiddle and other Melody Instruments", but I must admit I've not seen a copy of this book yet so I don't know if it's suitable for your needs.

There's been some examples of sheet music for smallpipes and fiddle in Common Stock, the LPBS magazine, but I can't remember when, sorry!
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Old 01-10-2019, 10:46 AM   #3
Kevin
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Default Re: Music for Pipes and other instruments

Hi Adam,

Thanks for these leads. I have the Orange Book and I agree that the chords are a great addition to a fine little collection. I will look into Matt Seattle's new book and some of the older copies of Common Stock. Sadly I let my subscription lapse years ago.

Thanks again,
Kevin
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Old 01-10-2019, 12:00 PM   #4
John McCain
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Default Re: Music for Pipes and other instruments

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin View Post
Hi,

I am guessing this is a long shot but has anyone run into any published collections of music arranged for multiple instrument voices including pipes? SSP and fiddle is what I am really looking for but I would be interested to hear about any other collections as well.
You know any pipe tune can be played by fiddle, right? If your SSPs are pitched in A, you're good to go with your fiddler. If you have tunes that do not have the key signature noted, tell the fiddler to add C# and F# (key of Dmajor [and don't you theorists @ me - I know]). Tell the fiddler to ignore those wee gnat notes, too.

If you're looking for chords, check out some of the offerings here:

https://www.scotlandsmusic.com/promotion/Tradition/Book

especially these collections:

Ceol na Fidhle - Highland Tunes for Fiddle (three book offer)
Ceilidh Collections for Fiddle - (four book offer)

There will be many tunes out of the bagpipe range, but many, many tunes are pipe tunes.

Hamish Moore's collection has chords for many tunes.

Agree with the LBPS books. Not all have chords, but the orange book does.
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Old 01-10-2019, 05:07 PM   #5
pancelticpiper
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Default Re: Music for Pipes and other instruments

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin View Post
has anyone run into any published collections of music arranged for multiple instrument voices including pipes?
The thing is, in both Scottish and Irish traditional dance music the heart of the tradition is unison playing, so "multiple instrument voices" in the orchestral sense doesn't exist.

In Irish traditional music however many instruments you have- fiddles, uilleann pipes, boxes, flutes, whistles, banjos- are all playing the same melody in unison. (Well not quite unison, but that's another subject.)

Likewise in the Scottish groups I'm familiar with you have Scottish pipes (be they smallpipes, border pipes, for Great Highland pipes) playing in unison with fiddle, box, and so forth.

So there's no point in publishing arrangements for the various voices. All that's needed is to publish the tunes themselves.

For sure there has been, in the Highland pipe band world in recent decades, a dramatic shift from the traditional strict unison playing to ever more complex harmonies.

Nowadays you hear quite sophisticated orchestration in the top pipe bands, for example some of the pipers playing a slow air while others play a reel.

I don't know if a book has ever been published of these pieces complete with their several-part harmonies. One piece has: The Steam Train to Mallaig.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y7DH4z5P9I0
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Last edited by pancelticpiper; 01-10-2019 at 05:18 PM.
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Old 01-11-2019, 09:18 AM   #6
Kevin
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Default Re: Music for Pipes and other instruments

Hi John,

Thanks for those leads. Playing pipe tunes with fiddlers is good but I get the sense they feel a little hobbled playing only on their A and E strings. I was hoping against the odds that someone had published a collection with different voices that allowed the fiddlers to use more of the range of their instruments while harmonizing with pipes.

The chords are helpful for guitar etc. but it feels like more could done with other instruments.

Best regards,
Kevin
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Old 01-11-2019, 09:25 AM   #7
Kevin
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Default Re: Music for Pipes and other instruments

Hi Richard,

Thanks for your thoughts and that very cool link. I think you confirmed what I suspected, that unison (or octave) playing is 95+% of what is available out there. A full ceilidh band playing in unison does sound great but with a smaller group, it feels like we could get more mileage out of the fiddles.

It is beyond my capability to arrange much of this stuff myself but when I have done some transposing (and octave folding or harmony note substitution) in order to play tunes with a more than 9 note range, along with fiddles playing the melody as written, the end result has been pleasing and seems fuller than just playing pipe tunes in unison.

Best regards,
Kevin
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Old 01-11-2019, 12:10 PM   #8
John McCain
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Default Re: Music for Pipes and other instruments

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin View Post
Hi John,

Thanks for those leads. Playing pipe tunes with fiddlers is good but I get the sense they feel a little hobbled playing only on their A and E strings. I was hoping against the odds that someone had published a collection with different voices that allowed the fiddlers to use more of the range of their instruments while harmonizing with pipes.
They don't get bored if you play fast enough!

But, we've (I play with fiddlers [and other instruments] frequently) done some arrangements much as you describe. I learned to play flute and whistle in order to increase my repertoire and those arrangements fit flute/whistle.

Cheers, John
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