I’m asked often by the session members to know where to find Breton tunes.
So a little FAQ,and the links !
Why there is, often, no name for Breton tunes ?
Because, a lot of breton tunes come from Kan ha Diskan ( breton songs) and the musicians who adapt the tunes for bagpipe, bombarde, fiddle, accordion..lost the name. The tunes are simple, so they adapt the tunes in other tuning, change some notes….and of course with ear transmission, the name and the original name go out. Just the style of the dance is know.(plinn, andro…)
But how to play with other musicians in a pub a famous tune ?
Like in Irish session, you must to learn, and play some standard tunes played by famous fest noz bands ( Sonerien Du, Ar Re Yaouank, Carre MAnchot….and other)or the traditionnal song singing by ( Alan Stivell, Tri Yann, Servat…). The famous breton musicans know by irish musicians( like Jean Michel VEILLON, Christian LEMAITRE, Soig SIBERIL….) adapt the tunes for the instrument. Do the same !
Why there is few breton band like irish band, and a lot of Breton Pipe Band ?
Because, mostly musicans play in bagads ( breton pipe band)and the "sonneur de couple"(just one biniou player and a bombard player) are the guardians of traditionnal tunes and you can listen a lot of their music on their website
( it’s a long story about this bands and their popularity.)
So, the links ( few breton website for breton music compar to irish music = > breton we are perhaps 9 millions in the world, irish you are + 80 millions in the world….the number speak)
http://breizhpartitions.free.fr/ (english/french website)
go in “Tablatures” section (english)
http://guitareceltique.free.fr/fpartitions.htm (french only, but comprehensive)
http://home.nordnet.fr/~lmtanghe/DADGAD.htm ( tunes to download)
and for breton song :
With the big ABC finder
looking for Breton dances (don’t hesitate to transpose with your software in D or in other irish tuning, we do the same in the Breton Pub, when we play irish and Breton tunes):
Montagne ( gavotte)
Kost ( for kost ar houed, c’hoad…)
Rond ( for St Vincent/ Sautron)
Here you find a list of the Breton Dances http://www.gwalarn.org/dansal/pagedecadredansebretonne.html
( the names are for looking)
And how to dance it http://www.geocities.com/Vienna/1160/brittany.html (english)
Breton Fest Noz
Hope it help !