Original Tunes on the Session?

Original Tunes on the Session?

So what are rules concerning original tunes on the Session? Is it acceptable to add a tune that has a ‘Celtic’ sound? And if so, how many settings should one provide? I have written a couple tunes that, while they are not purely Irish (of course, since I’m American :) ) do have a definite traditional non-specific Celtic feel.
Just wondering if that’s discouraged or not :)

Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

You will doubtless get a wide range of opinions; I can only give you mine - which is that I come here to find and share Irish Traditional Music, and nothing else.

Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

Post the tunes! You might be the next Josephine Keegan or Charlie Lennon.
Damn the begrudgers.

Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

Original tunes should be balanced with traditional tunes. So before you think about posting one of your own compositions, please post around four or five traditional tune settings.

Think of this 1:5 ratio as being "penance" for posting self-penned tunes. ;-)

Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

Jeremy’s orginal guidelines was along the lines of no more than one "own composition" for every 5 tunes from "the tradition"….They may not necessarily be traditional tunes in the strictest sense, of course.

So, by all means, as long as you "do your penance" was his advice.

Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

I tend to think of it about the same way I think of the recent discussion about Italian music. If your tune gets played by other people around and in sessions, then post it. I have written a handful of tunes, but the only ones that are posted in the Tunes section are ones that are on my recordings, so that the Recordings pages can have links to the proper tunes… The rest of them are just posted in my profile, which gives people a chance to look them up if they want, without it adding more clutter to the Tunes archive…

Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

Sure, post them. That said, I have to add that some of them may be pretty good, some will be OK for a while but fade quickly, others (like my own)….well, are just not very good. I think there’s a parallel with the ubiquitous singer songer writer. Ya just can’t sing the blues, or about a hard life when you’re driving a 2 year old Corolla. Playing Appalachian old time tunes doesn’t make me a post civil war coal miner. Buying a wooden flute, vintage fiddle, or tunable drum ( and even learning to play it well) doesn’t award any special connection to the culture, and I’ve learned that the hard way. Still, everybody deserves to be heard by somebody and I do applaud those who will put themselves "out there". So write ‘em and post ‘em. It may take a while but the good ones will be around long after I am!

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Girl, you better post ‘em! Better still I want to hear how you play them. It’s so much better when I can listen to how someone plays a tune she’s written. Not that .mid thing in the database. It’s OK for the majority of self-compositions; but it has little soul if you want your tune to express something to the lot of us. And, Kaeleigh,
I know you have something worth playing. Post it like that, give it what you got & you’re good in my books.

; Ben

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Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

Dia dhaoibh Greetings

I am quite stunned! Gobsmacked! Confused!

There is the fair question from the OP about the protocol of posting self penned tunes.

There are certain parameters known to most who first have read the guidelines which are quite explanatory.

The generous moderator of The Session has had the decency to explain politely the aims.

So now there is for me a dilemma, rebellion, mutiny perhaps, in direct contradiction of the whole ethos of what we are supposed to do or for that matter, acknowledge.

A fair number of my compositions are played regularly, many I guess without acknowledgement, but I wouldn’t, won’t, post them here because I haven’t done my time, so to speak. There are many settings here which show a dotted crotchet instead of a triplet; if that’s a setting I accept that because thats what this is about. However, I don’t feel that I can add a variation on that basis, and that means I can’t add any ‘new’ tunes.

I have great respect for what this site is about Please let’s show some respect.

I would ask that if you want to submit your own compositions then do as asked, maybe request the moderator for a tab for new compositions, or find a more appropriate site.

I hope I am in keeping with the tradition and what I perceive to be the aims and guidelines of The Session

All the best
Brian x

Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

I am being respectful, Brian. I appreciate Kaeleigh’s posts and would like to hear her playing the tunes she is writing. The help page has an answer for the question of posting one’s own tunes, Jeremy confirmed it above, I don’t think this needs to be too confusing.

Ben

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Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

OP - "I have written a couple tunes…. " If you mean that literally - ie, 2 - I don’t think anyone would object. That’s a far different thing than someone who swamps the Tunes section with their own compositions, or worse, with dubious "settings" which change about 3 notes from the original posting, or tunes which are very unlikely ever to turn up in an Irish traditional music session. There’s a lot of it about.

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Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

There’s one bloke who’s submitted more than 2,600 ‘different’ settings. I really find it hard to believe that he has heard all of these played by other musicians and hasn’t just tinkered around with the tunes himself.

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Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

Brian and Kenny, respectfully — how is this site anything like traditional ("I hope I am in keeping with the tradition") as we know it? We learned much of our music from people who, in many cases, couldn’t read notes, people who walked miles to a fair or feis to hear a new tune. They would whistle the tune on their way home in order to remember it. Thirty years ago there was no such a thing as Tunepal, thesession.org, Youtube, slow-downers, or any of the accoutrements that now seem essential to many players. In this new tradition things are much more open and it seems appropriate to share newly written tunes. This venue is part of the new tradition - although it isn’t so much folk-oriented as Jeremy-oriented.
Guidelines are guidelines, not commandments. Claiming to be too respectful to post your own tunes (which, if they are played, must be worth playing) is virtue signaling. And referring to "someone who swamps the Tunes section" is like the old canard, "If we let you we have to let everyone." But "everyone" doesn’t write tunes. I don’t. But I feel that everyone who does ought to be encouraged, not put down.
I know you both and I respect your contributions to contemporary ITM. But as I said, the OP could be writing great tunes that she - a teacher of Irish! — wants to share with her virtual community. What harm if she posts her music? If it’s crap it will be ignored. OTH, it would have been a great shame had someone told Josephine Keegan to go peddle her tunes elsewhere when she first started to play them in public.
Best wishes,
David

Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

"it would have been a great shame had someone told Josephine Keegan to go peddle her tunes elsewhere when she first started to play them in public."
Who is the person with any appreciation of traditional Irish music who would have done that ? And also she was as you say, "playing them in public", to her peers, not sticking them up on an internet discussion forum.
But in any case, it’s Jeremy’s house and his rules - he spelt them out above, 4th post down. I am absolutely fine with that.
Hope all is well with you, David.

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Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

Yep. Jeremy has made this place and made the rules. It is presumptive to think other opinions are relevant.

Pay the penance.

Play your tunes in sessions and maybe someonelse will post your tunes.

Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

I have posted original tunes here but it’s usually after I have played them in sessions and people asked for a source to learn them. In some cases they are already being played by local musicians. My personal take on the purpose of the tune database on this site is that it’s in the context of a trad session and not a vanity venue for your own compositions.

Someone once made the recommendation for people interested in sharing original tunes outside of the session context is to post the ABCs on your profile page so they don’t become part of the session tune database. I prefer this approach if you’re just interested in sharing original tunes with other members of the website.

Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

There is the argument being used by some members here to the effect that posting own compositions doesn’t really do much harm as the database is big enough to handle any number of tunes. Therefore, you don’t need to look at them. Of course, the same would apply to tunes of non Irish origin, those from other genres, and even truly traditional Irish tunes which are extremely obscure and highly unlikely to ever turn up in a session.

However, I still think we should generally respect Jeremy’s intentions and wishes when he originally set up the site and try to stick to the "spirit" behind this project. Although I have have submitted some lesser known tunes including non Irish(Mostly Scottish and Scandinavian), these are ones which I’ve actually heard within sessions or have played myself therein. They are not all ubiquitous, by any means, mind you.

I’m actually also concerned about the number of multiple settings which have appeared in the tunes section in recent years as one or two others have commented upon earlier in the thread and in other discussions.
Of course, the original setting which has been submitted may not have been entirely correct and there may be "better" ones but, generally, I would prefer that these were allowed to stand although there’s no harm in mentioning any obvious errors to the original poster so that he or she can correct things if necessary.
However, unless an alternative setting is quite different, I don’t really see the advantage of posting it in full e.g. if there is just the odd note here and there or different ornament etc.
My view is that it’s best just to concentrate on learning one *good* setting of a tune, adapt where necessary and/or put your own stamp on it re ornaments, generally playing style etc.
Of course, there’s no harm in mentioning or highlighting the odd subtle differences in the comments section as we always used to do before but I don’t really see the need for submitting an entirely new setting each time.
Others may disagree, of course. :-)

Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

I write a lot of tunes, and I’d like to let others see / hear them them, but I have to agree with Jeremy’s rationale here in keeping the site a site for (mainly) traditional Irish tunes.

Rather than discuss whether ‘own comps’ sound traditional or not, I think the only practical way to accommodate them would be a separate section for members’ own tunes (comps).

That said, I don’t see it being a necessary part of the site (like recordings, sessions and events), and in any case, it would be extra work for Jeremy.

There are a few external sites that welcome own comps, eg https://tuneswappers.wordpress.com/ [Andy Reiner] and http://capeirish.com [Bill Black]

Either that, or have your tunes in your profile, and just quote the link in a new discussion when a new tune is added.

[Not sure what the thoughts are on using the Discussions section to alert to a new tune ….]

Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

The database has original tunes. Members have posted tune settings of their own compositions in the database; in some cases it was because other members requested it. In other cases the tune’s author was not the person who posted the *1st* setting, but the composer put up her/his version later. I’m guessing if a tune is considered part of the tradition or is relevant to Irish music & is original but the first setting is different from ‘how the one who wrote it plays it’ then (perhaps) a latter setting by the author that would be acceptable. i.e. - A tune setting from the composer would be appreciated as a *contribution* to the database.

I know that’s wordy. My point is the site has had original compositions for most of it’s existence. Jeremy recently added a new recording which has original tunes. Every tune on the album (traditional & original) has been transcribed into the Tunes database.

I for one have no objection to hearing Kaeleigh’s two original tunes posted on this website. I encourage her
to do it. I do not think it presents a violation of Jeremy’s house rules. Personally I want to hear them
& believe it is healthy for the bearers of the tradition to allow it & show some measure of encouragement
for her interest in this topic.

Ben

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Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

Further to Jim Dorans’s suggestion, above, here’s an idea for original compositions on this site. There could be a separate part of the site for original tunes, with a system of endorsement whereby if a certain number of session.org users endorse the tune, it gets moved over to the main part. You could set the bar pretty high to ensure that the main part is not "polluted" by too many non-trad tunes.

Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

>>>: "Original tunes should be balanced with traditional tunes. So before you think about posting one of your own compositions, please post around four or five traditional tune settings.

Think of this 1:5 ratio as being "penance" for posting self-penned tunes. "

Jeremy, are you sure you meant five, and not three? (That was an abysmal Monty Python reference).

Anyhow, does the five tunes have to be strictly Irish, or can they be Scottish or Old-Time as well?

Also, how is everybody doing?

Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

I’m not that bothered really, but ideally I would prefer it if only tunes that have already been recorded and/or published were allowed in the tunes section (along with all the known variations). Other than that, I think that what Reverend said makes sense;- i.e., put your original compositions on your profile page.

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Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

I agree with Gobby here : "put your original compositions on your profile page".
Surely a solution that should satisfy everyone without making extra work for Jeremy.

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Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

I had an idea for setting up an original tunes facility on here.

Composers could send me their abc files to be hosted on my website.

If Jeremy was able to simply edit the header of the Tunes page (which simply reads "Tunes"), to include a URL for Original Compositions, that might work. Once clicked, the URL would redirect to my site, and break any links with thesession.org

What do you all think?

Jeremy, 1. Do you like the idea? 2. If so, is it easy to do?

Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

I don’t like that idea at all. It means that I would have to look at another web site other than this one and my mail account. That would disturb me greatly.

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Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

Jim, I think it would be great if you set up a site for original compositions!

I wouldn’t link to it from the tunes section of The Session, but you could add a link to the links section:

https://thesession.org/links

(And of course you can always put the link on your profile page too.)

Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

Yes, that sounds a great solution. Then if anybody asks about posting original and untested tunes, we could simply tell them where to go (so-to-speak). Sorry about my previous comment it was half a silly joke. The rest of my concern has been dressed by Jeremy’s suggestion. But Jim, just wondering… your site is just for fiddlers, would you have to clarify the idea to others (??)

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Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

Interesting Ben. There’s a few familiar names on there hey?

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Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

Yes there are. ;

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Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

Just once I would appreciate someone saying, it’s (insert OP’s screen name)’s discussion and her (his) rules.
But I know that is my pipe dream & mine alone.

Back to Bill Black’s folder w/original trad tunes from thesession.org members. Not to undercut Jim Dorans’
generous offer but I think caperirish has presented a similar platform to members looking for a place to
submit their own comps. In BB’s collection the tunes are from members here w/1 exception. I do not think
Max Bruecher is registered on the Mustard, though he is known by members of this forum. All the other composers in the collection are members of this site.

Thank you,
Ben

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Re: Cape Irish as in Cape Cod.

Sorry, I had capers today & they were scrumptious. Bill Black’s site is http://capeirish.com/
;

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Re: Original Tunes on the Session?

//Not to undercut Jim Dorans’ generous offer//

AB - Too late, buster. I’ve already gone in the huff :)

//I wouldn’t link to it from the tunes section of The Session, but you could add a link to the links section://

@Jeremy, well yes, it’s obvious now you mention it !!

//But Jim, just wondering… your site is just for fiddlers, would you have to clarify the idea to others//

@Gobby - well, it’s just another website in that respect. yes, fiddle is the main focus, but what I’m offering is just a little repository for .abc files (and audio/video too, if required).

I did something like that back in 2005 - the "Mighty Craic" project, where thesession.org members submitted a short bio, pic, and audio of their tune sets. It ran for a fair length of time.

So, if anyone wants to use Bill Black’s capeirish.com then that’s fine, and if they want to use my webspace too, then just send me a message.