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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 07-06-2012, 09:27 AM   #1
bog-standard
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Default New composition and link to recording

One of the few piping related goals I actually managed to complete this spring was finishing this (very) slow air.
It's titled "Farewell to Amherst Shore". Amherst Shore is a very small community on the Northumberland Strait, in Nova Scotia. My wife's family have roots there going back to the first waves of settlement from Scotland and England. A few years back, the last family home on the shore was sold due to the age of her parents, and the cost of taxes and maintenance etc.

We used to "summer" out at this very modest cottage. My wife had done so since childhood. The loss of this connection was a very real upset to her.

Well, on to the tune. This recording was done with the Zoom H2 and the iMac, and was the first or second time in 4 weeks I'd picked up real pipes. You can hear me struggle with bag pressure and blowing.
Too much time on the electro-chanter! Not enough real practice.

The tune itself is an attempt to evoke some sense of the pace of life and the sounds of the Shore. The big honking LG's are emulating boat and lighthouse horns. The keening little HG's are reminiscent to me of the whizzing-by of the feisty hummingbirds that are a regular summer feature of the community.

Just wanted to share, because music in a bubble isn't as much fun. Excuse the hack performance.

https://dl.dropbox.com/u/62599612/ju...%20amherst.mp3
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Old 07-06-2012, 12:01 PM   #2
Patrick McLaurin
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Default Re: New composition and link to recording

That's a nice tune. Did you write it down? If so, would you mind distributing it?
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Old 07-06-2012, 01:53 PM   #3
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Default Re: New composition and link to recording

I haven't transcribed it yet, but once I do, I'll post it here. Thanks for the nice word.
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Old 07-06-2012, 09:20 PM   #4
Heatherbelle
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Default Re: New composition and link to recording

Quote:
Originally Posted by bog-standard View Post
The tune itself is an attempt to evoke some sense of the pace of life and the sounds of the Shore. The big honking LG's are emulating boat and lighthouse horns. The keening little HG's are reminiscent to me of the whizzing-by of the feisty hummingbirds that are a regular summer feature of the community.
https://dl.dropbox.com/u/62599612/ju...%20amherst.mp3
Really enjoyed listening to the tune, and I love the way you have made it more 3D by painting a picture for us of the sights and sounds and feelings associated with that special place. In so doing, this music communicates such a lot. And apart from the picture setting, and an idea of the pace of life there, and the idea of a story that stretches back in time - you also leave room for the listener's own associations and images. It reminded me of something of the St Kilda story -the necessary but heart wrenching leaving behind of homes and land and way of life.

I heard the 'devil' in the music in the proximity of the C#s to the low Gs, the 'devil' element to me meaning the 'Sod's Law' or 'cruel twist of fate' that meant circumstances led to a leaving and not a keeping. A parting and not a continuation of something felt to be precious. I barely noticed your playing, the communication and the story the tune tells being so much more important imho.

I for one think you've done a great job in painting in sound. In telling a story. In describing a set of feelings. How lovely it would be if you made video footage of the scene you're describing and used your music as a backdrop. It's heartening to hear 'music' as opposed to just 'piping'. Great if you can get both, but if there's a choice, give me the music any day.
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Old 07-07-2012, 07:55 PM   #5
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Default Re: New composition and link to recording

This air reminds me greatly of a piobaireachd ground. Very cool composition!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by R. Lawson View Post
Btw, Heatherbelle, I just received my Musicophilia book yesterday, so will think of the music connections there.
Musicophilia is such great food for thought about music! I just finished reading it a couple weeks ago. Glad to see others like it as well!
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Old 07-08-2012, 04:52 PM   #6
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Default Re: New composition and link to recording

Thanks to you all for your kind encouragement and interesting comments.

Heatherbelle and Robin, I like your idea of putting a wee slide show together for my Father-in-law, and putting it up "on the You-toobs". He'd like that.
I will do it.

Hoohoodragon, while I wasn't intentionally trying to compose in the Ceol Mhor vein, I listen to lots and lots of the Big Music, and I'm sure I'm absorbing some influences. I'm not shy about borrowing anything useful and using it where I need it. So yeah....good call.
Thanks for listening and commenting.
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Old 07-08-2012, 05:01 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Heatherbelle View Post
I heard the 'devil' in the music in the proximity of the C#s to the low Gs,
I have been making great use of "Diabolous in Musica" for most of my musical journey. I played Thrash and Death metal in the 80s, Doom-rock in the 90s and I do confess to liking a dark tone, a sad phrase or an epic gloom infused into much of the music around me.
Alas, I am an Ulsterman.......and there is oft an inherent grimness in our natures.
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Old 07-08-2012, 05:02 PM   #8
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Default Re: New composition and link to recording

HI
All I can say is Very very nice.. Great job !!

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Old 07-09-2012, 01:13 PM   #9
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Default Re: New composition and link to recording

Here's a link to an updated edit of the sound file.
I backed the chanter down into the drone blend a fair bit, in an attempt to cancel out some of the tinny harshness in the original mix.
https://dl.dropbox.com/u/62599612/ju...%20amherst.mp3

And as promised, here is a link to a copy of the sheetmusic:

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/bwojcl0uoxqpxan/VKIF6PF5LD

The transcription was by Heatherbelle, who's fine work you are all familiar with at pipetunes.ca.
Thank you.

The astute BD forumites will note that the arrangement in the score is at variance with the performance in the recording.
The score presented here represents what I would consider my ideal rendering of the tune. Others may favour another approach, and I fully encourage other approaches.
This has been fun!
I'd love anybody who's interested to take their stab at it and post their results here in the thread.
-Cheers,
Sean
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Last edited by bog-standard; 07-09-2012 at 01:32 PM.
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Old 07-09-2012, 03:13 PM   #10
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Default Re: New composition and link to recording

Something strange with that PDF file going on.. On my end anyway..

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