Does this have a name?

Does this have a name?

Various types of fiddle music have their signature bowing patterns, (e.g. bluegrass has the double shuffle, Georgia shuffle, etc) that everyone immediately recognizes and attributes to that genre. Seems to me that if ITM has such a bowing pattern, it’s some variation of the following rocking pattern:

ecgc acgc

or

fdad bdad …. etc, you pick the string and key

Something along these lines appears in a huge proportion of reels and when I hear it I think "Irish". It’s such a common recurring theme, seems like it ought to have a name other than "you know, that thing where you rock the bow back and forth across two strings a fifth apart while holding a constant note on the lower string and …"

All the different ornaments have their own names, so what’s this type of phrase called? (I’m completely self taught, so it may be that I’m just ignorant) If it hasn’t got one, maybe someone should cook one up and claim their place in ITM history.

Re: Does this have a name?

As far as i know, it doesn’t have a name. and there’s many ways to play it too…

possibly the most recognizable way would the "Sligo shuffle"… (ask der Sensai to explain)

Maybe it could be called sommat along the lines of the "Irish Pop/Snap/….."

-P

Re: Does this have a name?

I’d refer to it as ‘FABA with a D pedal note’, but yeah, it should have a name, a trip up the stairs maybe?

Re: Does this have a name?

Actually, contrary to my original post, it isn’t so much the bowing pattern that’s distinctive because, as Padraig points out, there are lots of ways to bow this, it’s the pattern of notes that hits the ear and that’s found in so many tunes.

Re: Does this have a name?

Yeah I wuz wondering the same thing. "reel thingy"? There was a big long post about how to bow it a while ago. "that high low phrase in reels" I think.

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Re: Does this have a name?

I’ve heard it called a "rocking pedal", by someone with more knowledge of music theory than me. Sounds good, anyway.

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Re: Does this have a name?

The movement that I think you are talking about is (what I have heard anyway) wrist circles they are also used in Hornpipes for a good example of this in a Hornpipe check out Harvest Home.

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Re: Does this have a name?

I like "Sligo Shuffle." Except that it’s really just a Georgia shuffle applied to this string-crossing phrase common in many Irish reels. And there’s no set way to bow it, partly because it depends on how you go into it (on an up or down bow). And of course, lots of fiddlers do some combination of single bows, two-note slurs, etc., that are all different than the typical shuffle pattern(s).

Maybe there’s no name for it because the average Irish trad fiddler wouldn’t be caught dead admitting that s/he uses a bowing pattern. It’s certainly rare that you’ll string together more than two cycles of the shuffle, unlike old timey or bluegrass where you might repeat a shuffle for several bars (a la Orange Blossom Special).

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Re: Does this have a name?

The difficult thing for many fiddlers to learn in this "Sligo shuffle" is not so much the bowing but doing the fingering for that common phrase "adfd", where you have to rock the finger on the "a" while holding it on the "d" in order to play the "f". It’s a bit of technique (rocking the finger or the hand in coordination with the bow) well worth slaving away at because it’s so effective when done well, and occurs in many tunes - "Mulhaire’s" and "Rolling in the Rye Grass" for example, off the top of my head.
Trevor

Re: Does this have a name?

..and then there’s a sort of "combination" shuffle of the aforementioned shuffles in the third part of "Mouth of the Tobique", although it’s only across the two A-str and D-str (not the three G/D/A-strings)…not sure who plays it these days (aside from Kevin Burke).

Jim

Re: Does this have a name?

…and about as syncopated as a shuffle gets….

Jim

Re: Does this have a name?

Heh, I play it that way, Jim, and sometimes use just a bit of that syncopated shuffle for variation on other reels (though sparingly—maybe once a night, lest I sound like a bluegrasser trying to play Irish 🙂.

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