Using written music at sessions - an emerging trend given iPad?
As a players of traditional American music for Contra and Scottish folk dancing my wife and I typically use written music, as do all of the other players in the band. However, it can be unwieldy to manage all that paper and difficult to quickly find a given tune. Therefore, I’m thinking about the possibility of putting the music on an iPad so it will be more compact than a bulging binder and easier to find a given tune.
We’ve never used written music for playing traditional Irish music in a session, but as I often play a cittern, which can be used for either melody or accompaniment, it would be nice to have the chords for the tunes handy. I have no trouble memorizing the tunes themselves, but do have a difficult time remembering the chords for every tune.
What do you think about the possibility that, at least for accompaniment players, we might begin to see more players using technological aids to facilitate playing? For example, I’ve been in several sessions where a phone with TunePal installed has been used to find the name of a tune, or to remind us how a given tune starts. TunePal also shows the standard notation for the tunes.
Is it time to relax the ‘no written music’ rule in traditional Irish session playing? Is this happening already? Thoughts?