Good company. Good Irish session?

Good company. Good Irish session?

I realise there is no recipe for a well played session but there are inherent qualities which *help* make it happen. Are there not?
Here is my step into the no-man’s-land-quicksand of essential session ingredients;
Acoustic music
Familiarity & appreciation of a shared repertoire of tunes
Variation
Standard & spontaneous sets
Good use of ears
A desire to be in the company you’re in

I’m no expert so feel free to rip my recipe to itty-bitty pieces. That’s fair play. But do have a good session wherever you may find one.
;)
AB

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Re: Good company. Good Irish session?

Someplace relatively quiet helps as well. I played at a pub in Phoenix last weekend that was so noisy I couldn’t hear the fiddle I was sitting next to.

Re: Good company. Good Irish session?

I’d be interested to see why anyone would argue with any of that!

Re: Good company. Good Irish session?

I enjoyed your company and our playing today Peter, so I hope Ben won’t feel too disappointed that I won’t argue with him this time.

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Re: Good company. Good Irish session?

Ahhhh…….(sigh)

PEACE!!!!

🙂

Re: Good company. Good Irish session?

Actually, thinking about it Gobby, this seems to be the right thread (Good company. Good Irish session) for me to thank you.
As you might assume, it was life-changing for me, to find Sharon last year, and I would put today’s meeting - company and playing to be equally satisfying. Watching you and Sharon work together was intriguing, and I can only hope to somehow ‘catch-up’ a bit, and do more of it.

"did you hear that?……nothing!" 🙂

Re: Good company. Good Irish session?

Yes, I think the right chemistry was there between the three of us Pete. I think the progress will be fast. For my part I am taking my fiddle in for therapy next week. I was ashamed of her today and hopefully next time she won’t be giving me the silent treatment.

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Re: Good company. Good Irish session?

I can’t help feeling that following this thread is to intrude on a private conversation.

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Re: Good company. Good Irish session?

Room acoustics and background noise is a big one for me. There is one session nearby that I’m reluctant to attend, because it’s in a small space with low ceiling and a wall of glass windows directly behind the area the sessionistas sit. The acoustics are a nightmare, but the venue is supportive of the session so it continues. I just have a hard time enjoying the music in that kind of space.

Maybe I’m being too picky and should get over it. Sessions happen everywhere with bad acoustics and loud background noise.

Re: Good company. Good Irish session?

I know what you mean, Bazza.

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Re: Good company. Good Irish session?

Ambient noise level over pretty much everything else for me. I can deal with a tight space, but loud background noise, particularly patrons shouting, completely scrambles my brain and destroys any enjoyment I might get from a session. We’ve had to take active measures to move the shouters just a little farther away from our session and let physics fix the problem.

Re: Good company. Good Irish session?

Hey AB. I have a funny little feeling that you and Bazza are referring to the messages between Gobby and me.
I did not intend for it to go that way - but it did.
You will cope, I’m sure. 🙂

Michael and Cb have noted a valid point. Crowd noise can be debilitating.

Re: Good company. Good Irish session?

@Bazza….."I can’t help feeling that following this thread is to intrude on a private conversation"… I kind of felt that our un-private conversation was pertinent banter to the ‘good company’ part of the topic. Anyhow, it was my very first session so it was all the experience I had to talk about. The debilitating crowd noise was definitely an issue. That’s why we had our session in the street outside.

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Re: Good company. Good Irish session?

Thanks for sharing & please thank Sharon.

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Re: Good company. Good Irish session?

I’m no expert but the use of the term "I’m no expert" seems to imply the poster occupies the contrary position.
But I could be wrong. After all I’m no expert.

Re: Good company. Good Irish session?

Allan, I honestly do not understand your reply.

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Re: Good company. Good Irish session?

Sometimes crowd noise can surround and protect a tidy bunch of players. The noise can provide a canopy under which music happens. On March 16, Saturday, we played in a packed out pub. Four musicians, no PA. It was like being in a trench in WW1. Word bombs fell all around us. It was too loud to talk so we hunkered down and we played nearly the whole three hours. The time zipped on by and we all enjoyed ourselves.
We provide an ambiance for people to laugh, talk, and have a good time. Sometimes they get loud. It seldom bothers me. It isn’t all about us.
Playing in a noisy pub requires a different way of approaching the music. It’s often a balance between hearing yourself and hearing what other people are doing.

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Sounds like 3 very good hours, David. I appreciate hearing you say it is a balance… because that I get.

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"I’m no expert" seems to imply the poster occupies the contrary position"…. Huh??… how do you come at that Allan? To me it implied exactly what was stated.

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Re: Good company. Good Irish session?

allan21 - I’m loving your razor-sharp sarcasm 🙂 … but I think AB just implied that the recipe for a well played session is quite a subjective matter, and was looking for opinions.

Is that right, AB?

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I think AB’s original list covers most of it. I frequent 4 of the 5 local sessions (skip #5 because of the time). Three of those are at alehouses/taverns. Two additions to AB’s list: the publicans are happy to have us there and are very accommodating, and we seem to have a fairly steady influx of new blood - some are one-timers, others become regulars and most bring new tunes with them.