Define double jig?

Define double jig?

Would anyone be willing to give me a good definition of a double jig, as opposed to a single jig? I have been told various things by various people, and would like to see if there are specific parameters, or at least a consensus of opinion on a definition of a double jig.

Thanks

Re: Define double jig?

A double jig is in 6/8 time and features two groups of three eighth notes per bar. A single jig can be written in 6/8 or 12/8 (usually called a slide, then), and features a rhythmic pattern of a quarter note followed by an eighth note, commonly with two quarter notes at the ends of each part of the tune.

In abc notation, the two forms might look like this:

Double jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
|xxx xxx|xxx xxx|xxx xxx|xxx xxx|

Single Jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
|x2 x xxx|x2 x x2 x|x2 x xxx|x2 x x2 x|

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Re: Define double jig?

And here’s my bad definition of a double jig:
Ig-il-dy Pig-Il-Dy

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Re: Define double jig?

Thanks Will and BegF. This is pretty much what I was asking for. So then, "Geese in the Bog", "Boys of the Town", and "Connaughtman’s Rambles" might be good examples of double-jigs, whereas "Off She Goes" and "Behind the Haystack" could be considered single-jigs?

Re: Define double jig?

Yes, although Behind the Haystack typically is played as a double jig. Double jigs often have dotted quarter notes in them, which could also be played as three eighth notes. The A part of BtH has a bit of single jig feel, but the other two parts are all double jig.

Single jigs—like Off She Goes—have more of a limping or hopping (depending on how well you play 🙂 feel.

Also, some single jigs get bastardized into double jigs. For instance, you could take Off She Goes and play it:

|FAA GBB|ABc dAG|FAA GBB|AFD ~E3|

But to my ear you’d be losing the intent of the tune.

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Re: Define double jig?

if it fits with ‘rashers and sausages, rashers and sausages’ it’s a double jig.

Re: Define double jig?

Instead of ‘rashers and sausages’ my preference is to use various phrases from the Humpty Dumpty nursery rhyme. So the last two bars of Will’s example would become
‘sat on the’ ‘sat on the’|’sat on the’ ‘wall’|

And a quarter note gets "hump" and the following eighth note "ty"

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Re: Define double jig?

What everyone else said, except that I’m not sure about what Will said about single jigs being slides when they’re notated in 12/8. Whatever time sig you use, slides are different to single jigs in that a) they’re much faster (they start to sound like half-length hornpipes), b) whereas jigs (double and single) usually have a bit of swing wherever there is a group of 3 eighth notes (whereby the 1st of the 3 is slightly longer than the 2 that follow), slides don’t have any such swing and each 8th-note is of equal length like a hornpipe, and c) the rhythm has a completely different vibe because of points a and b.

1) If it sounds like a normal jig, it’ll be a double jig. 9.9 times out of 10 this will be the case.

2) If it sounds daggy and humpty-dumpty-ish, but otherwise jig-like, it’s probably a single jig. It’s most unlikely you’re going to hear these in a session - hardly anyone plays them!

3) If you hear a jig that sounds really fast and even, and it ends something like …d3 d3:| or if you hear a hornpipe that has the same part endings and that is 16 bars long instead of 32, then it’s most likely a slide, especially if it contains a lot of 3x8th-note groupings.

Re: Define double jig?

BTW, strictly speaking, single jigs should be in 6/8 and slides in 12/8. This is because if you were to tap your foot to the rhythm, you’d be likely to tap for every 3x8th-notes for double & single jigs, and after every 6x8th-notes for slides cuz they’re so fast. This is also why people say that reels should be 2/2, not 4/4, because you naturally tap your foot after every 4x8th-notes. Some slower tunes like marches get notated in 4/4 because you’d be tapping your foot on every quarter-note (think "Scotland The Brave").

Re: Define double jig?

"If you hear a jig that sounds really fast and even, and it ends something like …d3 d3:| or if you hear a hornpipe that has the same part endings and that is 16 bars long instead of 32, then it’s most likely a slide"

Sorry that’s not clear at all - I meant "a tune that sounds like a hornpipe but with …d3 d3:| part endings and 16 bars long instead of 32".

Re: Define double jig?

Mark, I agree, but elders of the tribe (Fintan Vallely, for one) often say it’s okay to notate slides in 6/8, so who am I to argue? I tend to hear slides as having longer phrases, so 12/8 makes more sense than 6/8.

As for tempo, like reels, slides can sound really nice slowed down a bit. The tempo distinction comes most into play when you’re playing for dancers. They’ll often want slides fast and jigs slow. Fine by me.

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Re: Define double jig?

I’m not sure that it’s safe to use notation, or that terminology, to define these tunes. Not that "it can’t be written down" or that writing will ruin the music in some way, it’s just that the notation is too ambiguous - people don’t necessarily translate the way you do.
For example, classically trained players trying to read slides will think they’re like hornpipes because hornipipes are sometimes notated with the swing written in (ug) and that looks a lot like 12/8 to them. Sounds silly when you hear it, but if you don’t have the rhythms in your ear, it’s not too weird an assumption to make.

Safer, I think, to listen to someone who knows the music playing slides, and then single jigs, and then double jigs, and around and around, until you can feel the difference. Once you know what a slide feels like, you can go from an unlabelled piece of sheet music to the right rhythm with little trouble, whether it’s written in 6/8 or 12/8 - a slide feels like a slide, even if you try to play it like a jig. Off She Goes, for example, is often given as an example of a jig in various introductory tutorials and tune collections, and it can be played kind of like a jig without too much damage - but once you know what a slide feels like, it’s always going to feel like a slide. And it’ll usually be given in 6/8, for what that’s worth.

So, defining a double jig. It’s what you think of as a jig. Pick up any record, skip ahead to a jig set, and listen, it’ll define the double jig for you.

Slides, listen to Jackie Daly’s record Music From Sliabh Luacra for a start. To me, the pulse is like a polka, where a jig pulse is pretty close to a reel pulse - you can switch from jigs to reels pretty easily, and likewise slides to polkas if you want, but jigs to polkas or slides is a lot harder and more jarring if you’re playing them right. It’s not the tempo, either - when you get away from the dancers there’s a lot of room to move on time in all of the tunes, as long as you get the pulse.

Single jig, I’ve heard some say is the same as a slide (Breathnach has them in the same section in his collections, for example), but I couldn’t say for sure. If someone can suggest a good source recording for some single jigs as distinct from slides and double jigs, I’d like to take a listen. As yet, from just reading them, they feel a lot like slides to me, but I’d love to be schooled.

Re: Define double jig?

Hmmm. Off She Goes doesn’t sound like a slide to me—no double quarter note on the endings, and the phrases in the B part are too short. It fits the single jig form better to my ear. Smash the Windows, on the other hand, has the double quarter note endings and longer phrases = slide. Same with Road to Lisdoonvarna.

And every written description I’ve seen on double and single jigs relies on music notation terminology. Sure, if you’re face to face with instruments in your hands, you can demonstrate the difference. But online here, I think the music terminology (and abc notation) serves well.

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Re: Define double jig?

I agree with Harmon - Off She Goes is like the epitome of a single jig, and also the epitome of dag. I’ve never heard it in a session, even as a joke 🙂

You’ve got to agree with John though, that the best way to distinguish them is by listening. I won’t have people think we’re trying to get bogged down with musical terminology here when we all know that this stuff can’t be notated effectively using dots. But hell, the terminology’s there, so why not use it? It’s like: why bother talking about "jigs" and "reels"? Isn’t that musical terminology too?

—————————————

"Hey Beebs play that set of reels you did the other day"

"Dow, stop using musical terminology"

"But Brides, I mean the reels as opposed to that nice set of jigs you did after the reels"

"Dow, you’re confusing me"

"Okay, you know, that one that’s in B minor"

"All my tunes are in B minor"

"Oh yeah. By the way, I don’t want to sound confrontational Brides you just used musical terminology"

"Shut up Dow and play a tune"

Re: Define double jig?

Aiiieee! Dow! What are you playing at? I hardly ever get time to check this site anymore and what do I find the when i log on????
Anyhow, I know musicial terminology Dow…

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Re: Define double jig?

Here’s my bad definition of a single jig:

Eye-di did-dl-ey|doo-by doo-by.


(Well, someone had to post it!)

Re: Define double jig?

A simple calculation will allow you to determine if a tune is a double jig.
Find the average length of all the notes in the A part and do the same for the B part. Square the averages and multiply them together, this gives you the fluxion constant for the tune, if the negative log of this number is less than 1.3768 it’s a double jig.
This works because Binary Universal Length Locked Stochastic Hilbert Integer Timing is inevitable.
TTFN
PP

Re: Define double jig?

But the negative log of the hydrogen ion concentration is the pH value, isn’t it?
Trevor