Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

https://clyp.it/4fk5h3cz

Is it ‘good enough’ to be thought as ok playing in public? Whether I could play it like that with the social pressure of people watching is another matter!

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

I think your playing is lovely, some hiccups but generally good recovery.

For myself, I like to be able to play tunes I play in public a bit faster then my comfortable BPM so to say. Just because I know 1. in public my heart beat is higher than at home, and as such my playing will increase in speed. 2. Others might join in and influence the tempo. So make sure that you’re comfortable beyond your comfort zone so to say.

And even then there will be plenty of times that you will stumble when playing in public. But every time is a good learning experience.

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Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Thanks.

Sure there are still bits to iron out (I imagine that will always be the case but I would think to a smaller degree the better you get) but it is one of the few times I recorded that I didn’t want to delete it instantly and not want to hear it again due to major errors.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

One mistake and you’re playing too fast. You should always play within your comfort zone — at the edge of that zone, perhaps, but when you step outside the zone you’re playing too fast and will make mistakes. Mistakes embarrass the player and if that embarrassment shows then the audience becomes uncomfortable. We want our playing to delight the audience, not to make them feel uncomfortable.
I can hear that you are musical. You have a good sense of that tune. Now you have to slow way down and play it without a single error. Then you can play it in public well enough not to be embarrassed.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Lovely playing, it’s a difficult reel, you just need to be a bit more fluent. Well done.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Well done WindMusic. What are your goals for playing this music in public? Do you play in sessions? It seems to me you’ve already got the most important bit down - you play at a steady tempo. Nearly everyone makes a few mistakes when playing from time to time, but the ability to press on through the mistakes without stopping or loosing the tempo make a huge difference when playing with others.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Never mind the ‘audience’: if you are playing in a session the people around you are fellow musicians. You’ll get over nerves as you play more often.

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Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

@gooseinthenettles thanks. You are the first one to point out the difficulty of the reel; I should get some points for that! It is well known as one of the toughest reels reading around.

I can play other easier ones more fluently; or like to think so.

@jusa nutta eejit goals? I would say a goal of mine is to be able to play for strangers at an an acceptable level and not ‘choking up’; like how a busker would. That is a long way off but I’d say that is a long term goal.

Medium would be to play in a session confidently with others and I am sure that would be the next logical step in between.

I started the whistle originally because of its unique practically in that it is so portable and love the idea of being able to whip it out whenever I wanted to show off with no prior knowledge that I played, kind of like the magician with impromptu street magic.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

If you have a slow/learners session available to you, I’d get along to it. You learn a lot from ensemble playing that applies to solo musicianship, and you’re clearly at the point you’re ready to start thinking about it.

You’ve made a really good start here - just be aware there’s more to learn, and the hard part starts now, because less and less of it is available in a form other than careful listening to good players.

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Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Good enough to be played in public? Frankly, no.

Now everyone else has been very kind and encouraging and flattering of your ego, which is all to the good, but I think you need to hear some arguments from the other side of the court of public opinion.

A rule of thumb I made myself long ago (and which helped me greatly particularly on my first trip to Ireland): when someone says, "play us a tune" (which, let’s face it, is a often a bit of a test, to see whether you should be taken seriously), pick a tune that is well within your abilities, so that nerves won’t trip you up and embarrass you, or even humiliate you. Better to play, say, Rolling in the Ryegrass well than to attempt, say, Jenny’s Welcome to Charlie or the latest fancy-pants newly composed session hit and come a cropper.

I would apply the same rule to playing a tune solo in public. And IMO Moving Clouds is not well within your abilities at all. Your technique, or lack of it, lets you down badly. I’m not going to pick your playing apart in public, but if you want to know what points I think let you down, feel free to send me a private message.

And please take this in the spirit in which it is intended - that is, to help you progress and achieve handy whistle player status, which is undoubtedly within your grasp, with a few helpful pointers and a lot of practice. 🙂

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Sorry, but I have to agree with Stiamh. "The Moving Cloud" is a very difficult tune to make work on the whistle. I might join in with a lot of other people playing it, but would never consider playing it solo, and I’ve been playing whistle for a long time.
Depends what you mean by "in public". You are very unlikely to hear it played at that speed in a session with other musicians. If you are asked to start a tune yourself in a session, choose something simpler. Same would apply if you were on a stage in any setting.
Whether or not you’re embarrassed by any performance, only you can decide.
Best of luck with your music.

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Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

It’s a really challenging tune, I wouldn’t risk it and would definitely pick an easier tune/set for sharing in public. You’ll feel so much better about yourself if you choose something manageable and play it to a fair standard without tripping up. You could probably trip up on Shoe the Donkey and win a sympathetic applause, but murdering the Moving Clouds is more likely to get blank looks and maybe a friendly word of advice. It’s really common that people come into a session and attempt a pretentious tune, there’s no need. A little bit of humility and good humour goes a long way, that and a couple of lessons on whistle finger technique. You’ve a good musical ear, learn to play traditional tunes on the whistle in a traditional way, you’ll be grand in no time. Good luck!

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

The main problem I hear is that you are playing the tune in 4/4 and reels are in 2/2 (cut time), although in sheet music 4/4 is often erroneously used. If you lack two distinct pulses per measure, your reel won’t sound Irish. I can easily hear the 1-2-3-4 in each measure as you play. Instead of a driving forward lilt, the tune sort of bumps along like Here comes Santa Claus right down Santa Claus Lane (to get a bit seasonal). None of this has aught to do with tempo, btw. Listen to a good recording of the tune and see if you can hear the difference. Again, don’t be tempted to think it sounds more Irish because it is faster.

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Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Stiamh & Kenny are giving you the best read on how your playing is for "Moving Cloud". It’s good enough
for the kinder replies on this forum. Also for anyone else who who wants to give you a bit of credit but
not point out that playing a tune which is more familiar to you (easier?) might be more within your grasp,
make you more comfortable & actually sound like the tune you’re wanting to play. Cheers, Stiamh & Kenny.

The only thing I’ll add is; find a tune you’re more familiar with. That & listen to the Ryan Duns’ set of
reels w/Moving Cloud @ the ending. Then in practice, in private keep working on one or all of those reels
*as long as it takes to know them well*. Eventually you can bring them out in public & be appreciated
for the time & effort you put into them in practice. Until then you can play in your comfort zone & strive
to be better with experience.

Ben

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Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Ok, in hindsight, I realize that was probably the worst tune I could have picked to introduce my playing.

Is this any better or still just as bad. I know I made some minor misnotes but other than that?:

https://clyp.it/pf1l4i2q

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

It’s quite a ‘notey’ sort of jig [not one I’m familiar with] - wouldn’t you be better off with an old standard like Cliffs of Moher or Out on the Ocean? Then at least folks can join in and cover up any potential hiccups!

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

What listeners enjoy, and other people join in with, is the rhythm and pulse. It’s an important part of the learning process to get the notes "right" but for playing to other people, rhythm is what really matters. A teacher may say well done, but no one appreciates ornamentation that upsets the pulse.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Tom is right. And so is Christy. Go away and learn to play Saddle the Pony or something like that until you can produce a convincing rendition. Finding a teacher who knows their stuff would be a good idea.

In the meantime, I strongly recommend that you stop attempting to put rolls into your tunes until you have understood what they are and until you can do them acceptably. I would guess that you are trying to play them based on a written description of what they are made up of, but without any idea of what they are supposed to sound like. Result: clumsy, unpleasant, laboured tangles that, as Tom says, upset the pulse.

Listen closely to rolls executed by good players. Then start with this page (written a long time ago, in the days before it became easy to post videos on the web): http://www.rogermillington.com/siamsa/brosteve/rolls0.html

And remember - even beautifully executed rolls will not make up for basic deficiencies of rhythm and flow. 😉 .

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

The reel is called The Moving Cloud.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

I don’t know what the second tune is. I’m not sure if I’ve never come across the tune, or because I can only hear a string of notes without the underlying rhythm.
I’m not an accomplished player but I can play familiar tunes up to speed in sessions. My twopennorth of advice is to listen to any tune you want to learn until it’s going round your head all day. Until you can hear the tune, you’ll never learn to ay it well.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

« I don’t know what the second tune is… »

https://youtu.be/1Gg-cMs5hJc

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Had absolutely no idea I sounded as bad as what people here are saying. I must have absolutely no ‘musicality’ from what you are all saying. I thought I could at least keep in time since I have played to a metronome and the beeps were matching to the on beats.

Makes me not want to practice any more and definitely don’t want to step foot into a public session.

Those times when I played a tune solo the couple times when I went to session because no one else knew it (and no not just because I picked only hard/obscure tunes but just cos I had no idea what that regular ones at that session would be) they must have all been laughing behind my back as soon as I left.

If I can’t hear what you all hear maybe I should just quit since I am apparently so useless and ‘tone deaf’.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

No, you are not "useless and tone deaf", nobody here has said that, and I don’t think anybody would. You just need to listen more and practice more. You need to go back to the session you mention and find out the tunes they are playing, then go and learn them. A session is about playing with other people, not playing solo.
In trying to play "The Moving Cloud" and Brian Finnegan tunes, you’re trying to run before you can walk. Don’t be in such a hurry. Take your time and enjoy the musical journey.
I hope that others here will echo what I’m saying. Best of luck with your music - if I can help in any way, please send me a private message.
Kenny

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Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

I fully agree with what Kenny has just said. I understand your discouragement - you just got several buckets of cold water poured over you. But don’t give up. You’ve put a lot of effort into learning the whistle so far, and I believe that no effort is wasted on our musical journeys. So keep building on what you have achieved. We think you just need to make a bit of a correction to your trajectory 😉

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

I agree, you’re on your way. Now pick something simple and play the stuffing out of it.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Do what Kenny suggests, find out the tunes they play at your local sess, also type ‘popular session tunes ’ in the search facility here, you will get probably half a dozen lists of tunes , not everyone will agree with their ‘popularity’ as such but guarantee that most people at any given session will know them. You’re obviously half way there, don’t give up now!
ps just don’t learn ‘Irish Washerwoman ’ everyone hates it - well nearly everyone…………..

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

You’re welcome to play The Irish Washerwoman in my local session - but, in the name of political correctness, I prefer to call it ‘The Washer’. Note, however, that it’s not the easiest of tunes to play.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

@WindMusic: You are certainly not ‘unmusical’ or ‘tone deaf’ and your timing is good - you just need to keep practising and, for now, focus on easier tunes. The main thing is, you’ll need to be comfortable playing at faster tempos if you are to join in with a session (perhaps you already are on some tunes). It is good that you are challenging yourself with a ‘fancy pants’ tune like The Moving Cloud, and getting it up to session standard is a good medium- to long-term goal (I haven’t mastered it after 25 years of playing trad - although I haven’t put much time into that particular tune) but there are plenty of other great tunes that are lot less challenging yet just as musical.

Keep playing and don’t be afraid to post more clips of yourself to show us how you’re doing (and don’t be disheartened by more honest criticism - it’s intended to help you).

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

> they must have all been laughing behind my back as soon as I left.

While there can be some very judgemental people playing this music, in all honesty, if they were that unkind they would have let you know to your face.

You have done a lot of work to get to where you are, but I am afraid it is the nature of playing music that the work doesn’t stop. As I said in my post above, you’re now at a point where the improvements come more slowly and the most important thing is the volume of playing (and listening) you do, by yourself and with others.

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Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

I only just noticed the second clip. Your tempo is mostly steady - still slower than typical session tempo but that is within your reach. However, although the tune you have chosen is in some ways less challenging than The Moving Cloud, it has some rhythmic quirks in it that rely on rock-solid rhythm to work - your slightly shaky grasp of the underlying jig pulse makes it difficult to the listener to follow the melody. I would echo what others have said, that you should work on some basic traditional session repertoire before bringing out these more esoteric tunes - that will ultimately give you a good foundation for tackling any tune.

As regards rolls, there are differing opinions: some recommend playing the tune unornamented and adding the rolls, cuts etc., at a later stage; others regard the ornaments as integral to the tune and recommend learning the tune with ornaments from the outset. Either way, you need to master the ornaments in isolation before you use them in a tune. The thing to realise is that rolls, cuts and taps are *rhythmic* articulations in themselves - they should never interrupt the rhythm of a tune but be *part of* the rhythm.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Just an offshoot question here - what version of the tune in thesession database do you think is currently being played at sessions these days?

https://thesession.org/tunes/1091

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Thanks, Jeff!

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

I’m going to side with the folks who say don’t go solo with this in public yet. That said, it depends on who your public is. If you’re playing at an open session and most of the folks are musicians, I’d say let ‘er rip. But if somebody’s paying you to perform, I’d say don’t. A simple tune well played is always nicer to hear than a fancy tune with problems. As for one person’s advice to work on it until you can play it perfectly… If we did that none of us would ever play in public.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

@Jim again
I picked it up from a live recording with Gerry O’Connor where he obviously plays a highly ornamented interpretation with scale runs and what not. Then I heard a simpler two-part version with a bunch of Scandinavian musicians. For my personal taste, Henrik Norbeck’s version is the best of both worlds (most settings here on thesession have "too much" information/variation/ornamentation).

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Looks good, Jeff. Gonna give it a go soon !

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Don’t think anyone was laughing. We’ve all overfaced ourselves playing a tune in public we shouldn’t have done. They were probably thinking, ‘Been there, done that.’ Learn your session’s repertoire and play along. If asked to start a set, play one you know other people play and their timing will help yours.

I had a phase where I thought I could learn some tricksy Gordon Duncan tunes on the pipes, but ultimately realised I’m not good enough to play those well, and there are thousands of great tunes which are easier. Now I just can’t be bothered with stuff like that. And does anyone care if you can play ‘Pressed for time?’ Not really.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

I think it is easy for people to pile on the criticism and throwing rotten tomatos once once person does so. It seems the mob took over after the first negative feedback and the floodgates opened. I would like to hear everyone who was critical upload their own attempts at both these tunes to have them laid bare for criticism and judgement as I did, since as one person said, every tune they learned they can play perfectly.

Re ornamentation, funny thing is I don’t even like rolls that much but my rational was that I should try and follow exactly what was recorded of a given player trying to improvise an unornamented version of a recorded then having to relearn the ornaments after.

As an interesting aside I read today in youtube comments that Micho Russell didn’t do rolls at all; I had never thought about it listening to his tunes until they said it. Maybe I will learn a few of the standards from his recordings in that case as he has a very unadorned style which I like anyhow.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Well, in fairness, you did ask. "Is this playing good enough to be play[ed] in public…?"

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

I feel its pointless trying to follow note for note transcripts, just look at and lisen to many versions and pick up lots of ideas.
Re ornaments, untill you can play a tune three times At session pace through with zero mistakes dont even think about ornaments . That is the’ black belt ‘ ornaments come in the dan grades . 🙂 sure practice them as technical exercises . And practice lots of bog standard exercises for any instrument in The relevant keys.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Windmusic. Don’t hold your breath.

Some folk here just know best about every tune and everything. Thankfully, I take excessively negative comments really well, face-to-face, and always maintain a sunny and peaceful disposition.

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Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

You were the one who asked for opinions. There is no "mob" here. Suggestions about your playing have been positive, and not a single soul has said you should give up, quite the opposite. I wouldn’t record and upload the 2 tunes you have played, as I know fine well I couldn’t do them justice. Go away, listen, practice, but don’t bitch about the advice you get when you ask for it.

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Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

"… I read today in youtube comments that Micho Russell didn’t do rolls at all …"

I think he used them now and again but, yes, it is perfectly possible to play a tune well without them. Learning from Micho Russell is a great idea - he had a knack of paring tunes down to their simplest form, yet infusing them with all the rhythm and musicality you could want.

Re the first part of your comment, it is probably true that many of us would not have the guts to post recordings of our own playing, and you deserve respect for doing so. I cannot comment on everyone that has posted but I know at least a couple of them are very accomplished players. Some of the comments may have been worded less kindly than others but fundamentally, I don’t think anyone has made any unfair criticism - it is all constructive and I hope you can use it to your advantage. ‘Perfection’ is, of course, an unattainable goal, since the goalposts move ever further away as we improve - but it’s important to keep in sight whatever idea of perfection we have and strive towards it.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Be careful what you ask for - you asked for feedback and you got it. What you perceive as "negative feedback" reads to the neutral viewer as constructive criticism: no one said "you suck!", far from it, people just offered honest assessments, and tips on how to move forward. My mentor has a saying: "performance, feedback, revision" - if you just get stuck in a "performance -feedback" loop, ignoring the feedback or viewing it as a personal attack then your development will be stunted. The choice is yours.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

OP - "since as one person said, every tune they learned they can play perfectly". Did someone really say that ? I think I must have missed it. Who said that ? Don’t believe it.
"excessively negative comments…. " Again, where was that in this discussion ?

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Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Ask for constructive criticism, receive constructive criticism, take a hissy fit…

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Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

It’s likely these players could indeed play the tunes very well - there are some excellently experienced musicians being very honest right here.

Pushing you onwards to get even better.

Your playing is clearly practiced and on its way.

I suppose you have to ask yourself - did you want brutally honest feedback or did you want people to be impressed with your playing?

It is intermediate playing that has some clear signs of practice - but definitely lacks a common quality that would make people fee comfortable playing along with.

I’m sure that others may worry about playing along with you at a session. This has become overwhelmingly apparent from the many posts. It clearly doesn’t give the impression you have a rock solid feel for timing - hence the repeated helpful advice to work on solid timing ‘aka pulse.’ This is something that a metronome won’t teach. Hence the helpful advice to get a teacher.

I would echo this - as clearly the feedback has been emotionally tough for you to take. A face to face teacher will deal with you how you need and communication is easier this way.

You said you are aiming to “show off” with an easily portable instrument as you said in a comment previously - or perhaps in a now edited bio(?). Was this perhaps your aim with the sharing?

If so - it is intermediate playing that is close to a standard that sounds competent in most sessions! This may have taken some hard earned work - or maybe it just came quickly.

If you are looking for people to be impressed with this level of playing - there are probably many who will be impressed by your standard of playing at the moment.

If you’re looking to join in with other musicians of the usual standard - keep going - you’re almost there!

And don’t take things too personally!

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

> Ask for constructive criticism, receive constructive criticism, take a hissy fit…

In fairness not all that much of it has been genuinely constructive. There’s been quite a lot of "go away and practice" and "the rhythm is not that strong" and valid points though they are, I’m not really sure they form an extensive programme of points that the OP can address in detail.

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Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

My advice would be to get Mary Bergin’s tutorials and follow them rigorously.

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Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Several posters have recommended playing simpler tunes. That’s a pretty straightforward course of action.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

All of the advice has been constructive. You won’t get better advice, given that this is an internet discussion forum with obvious limitations, than " listen more and practice more". I’ve offered to respond with help if the OP sends me a PM - what more can we do ? What is your constructive advice ? The problem is that we can only help people who are willing to be helped. The good advice is there - take it or leave it.
https://youtu.be/1UmN6J3ZRBk

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Re:Practical Critique for Tin Whistle Learner?

Wind Music, do you wish to improve your playing? I think you do, I hope you want to get better.
I have been on this forum long enough to suss out when certain members are being helpful vs.
when they are not. This is my opinion & does not reflect what other members may think; but I believe
quite a few of the replies above are from players who know what it is to play in public, they probably
know what it is to be embarrassed, and the members I am referring to have put in the time learning
(& improving) their craft (the tunes, their instrument, playing in sessions, etc.) to have cred.

This thread is packed with helpful pointers for a new player seeking to improve. If you feel condescended to,
I get that. A forum can be dehumanising at times. It is limited mostly to simple text & links to outside sources. It’s literally impossible to experience the person on the other side. So, when the criticism feels overly harsh;
look again before judging another member’s reply.

Having said this, if I was you, I would send a personal message to Kenny, I would explore Stiamh’s links to tinwhistle playing, I would take to heart DrSilverSpear’s reply, "Don’t think anyone was laughing. We’ve all overfaced ourselves playing a tune in public we shouldn’t have done. They were probably thinking, ‘Been there, done that.’ Learn your session’s repertoire and play along. If asked to start a set, play one you know other people play and their timing will help yours." [Spot On.]

Hope this helps, Wind Music!

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Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

I still like your recording. You do stumble every now and then but you recover as well, that’s the most important part of playing in public, being able to recover. Other then that it’s a learning process. If you started this tune I would gladly join in.

I disagree with all the posters that say this tune is too difficult, or too show off. And would also like to mention that such comments are entirely off topic within the context of this topic.

I’ve noticed a very conservative stance when it comes to playing "flashy" tunes on this forum. Perhaps it’s a generation difference. At all sessions I’ve been to we’ve been playing these so called "flashy" tunes all together and it has been a blast.

Play tunes you like, don’t let anyone tell you which tunes you should or should not play.

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Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

I’d agree with you about the conservative nature at times about tunes Boyen!

However - it is a common mistake I am confident you have seen - a beginner entering a session - playing a lovely complicated modern tune - on its own and not in a set - thus leaving many out of the ability to join in - and not quite playing it to ‘solo standard.’

The advice for a beginner/intermediate player to play a standard classic tune - and play it well - is rock solid advice! Especially for sessions - to make it easy to join in.

Competency trumps turn choice when it comes to sessions - and having everyone join you (and vice versa) is key to learning.

There is also a general consensus that typical sessions are not normally soloist affairs. So suggesting more universal tunes also helps session beginners learn a tune that will, likely, save them from being ‘left out.’

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

@Stiamh and others who said I should PM not to avoid picking apart my playing in public well the damage is already done. I would suggest you post it all out in this thread for open discussion since the worst is over I think and better to have others weigh in on the points mentioned.

My self-esteem about my playing is already at rock bottom, I don’t think it can go lower now 🙂 and better promote discussions about the points you think I am failing on. The benefit of forums is to get a range of opinions and then the common themes I will take on-board.

Cheers.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

"Play tunes you like, don’t let anyone tell you which tunes you should or should not play."
Play tunes which you are able to play, and don’t play them in public until you can. Nothing at all "conservative" about that, it’s mere common sense.
As for the above from the OP, there’s nothing more I feel I can add to what I’ve posted above. Over to you now, the offer still stands.

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Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Hello WindMusic!

briantheflute here

I thought I might share an observation or two.

Number 1

In answer to your question, which DID ask for opinions, on how people might adjudge if it was ‘good enough etc’, I feel that you have been accepted, and, for the most part, treated ‘most courteously’
Your offerings have been heard, and assessed by those very people you invited. And, I feel, offering positive guidelines.

Number 2

I hadn’t joined the discussion until now, as I felt that I couldn’t much improve on the many constructive comments posted by some of the Members here at The Session.
Seriously, there are many who have contributed with great grace, generosity, and far more instructive and constructive comments and suggestions than I might be able to articulate
In that instance I believe you have been afforded some gentle positive wisdom.

PERHAPS instead, you might want to assimilate those comments and suggestions and work out a plan, a project, on how this advice might get you to playing with, not just the confidence but, the ease which seems to emanate from those links provided.

Personally, here at The Session, I have revealed and acknowledged my early progress, some hilarious comments and anecdotes…
Do you know why?

Because I listened!
I listened to well meant advice, I listened to encouragement and I just wanted to play this beautiful music.

Please be positive.
Please accept the offer from a very generous member here to exchange a private message or two.
That, believe me is probably one the most positive offers, gifts, you might receive.

And please, please try and understand that no-one is trying to destroy your playing.
In time I hope you might appreciate all that has been posted

AND, like a number of contributors, I wish you the best

Brian x

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

"Play tunes which you are able to play, and don’t play them in public until you can. Nothing at all "conservative" about that, it’s mere common sense."
Kenny,
You are cherry picking comments and putting them in another context. You’ve been sleeping under a rock if you haven’t noticed negativism about flashy tunes within this forum. Need I remind you of: https://thesession.org/discussions/44175

"There is also a general consensus that typical sessions are not normally soloist affairs. So suggesting more universal tunes also helps session beginners learn a tune that will, likely, save them from being ‘left out.’"
Many people know the Moving Cloud, I haven’t been to a session yet where I played it solo.
That said I don’t disagree with your premise. But also, I would never tell someone to not play a tune, I’d rather encourage them to make it work.
And Moving Cloud is not the most complicated of tunes, lets not pretend you are required to play it as Matt Molloy in order to enjoy it in a session setting.

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Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Clearly, WindMusic, asking for opinions and criticism on an internet forum is a risky business with a high potential for hurt feelings. I was the first to lob in what you subsequently described as a "rotten tomato," and I did wonder whether I should comment at all.

A big part of why I did comment is an experience I had, during my early and very intense days of learning, of receiving criticism from a good player. What he said pulled me up short and sent me away thinking, forcing me to reevaluate my entire approach to a particular type of tune - jigs, in fact.

Now this was in a small session in London, with some very good players from Ireland, including the "anchor", a highly respected traditional fiddler. I didn’t literally request feedback, but I suppose you could say that by playing a tune solo in such company I was "asking for it"! The fiddler leaned over and, gently but firmly, told me in what way I was making a pig’s ear of the tune. Like you, I thought I had been doing pretty well, so this was a bit of a slap in the face.

But because of my respect for the man, I didn’t for a minute question whether he was right, but went away and thought about it, and worked on fixing the problem he had identified. And I am _eternally_ grateful to him for having the wisdom, and the generosity, to step in and let me know I wasn’t doing so pretty well as I thought.

Now getting comments on a public forum is a far cry from a quiet word in the ear in a semi-private setting like a small pub session. Another difference is that you have no way of knowing whether what I and others have said comes from people who know what they are talking about.

That’s why I said you should find a teacher - so that you could hear constructive criticism from someone whose knowledge - whose authority, if you like - you accept. But as you say, the damage is done now. But I think, if you are wise, you will put aside the hurt feelings and accept the criticism in the spirit in which it was intended - as I did all those years ago with criticism that allowed me to move up several gears - and saved me from embarrassing myself with more pig’s ear renditions.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

It seems to me that some folk here are mistaking a quiet word, exchanged in a one-to-one conversation, with a broadcast of undiluted and unmediated criticism.
Maybe some self-reflection is due.
Maybe some wiser heads will rule. Maybe an apology will be offered.
Maybe the season of goodwill will prevail.

Posted .

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

I say again, Allan, the OP didn’t ask for a one-to-one conversation or a quiet conversation in a pub. He asked flat-out if his playing of those particular tunes was ‘good enough’ and didn’t like the answers.

Basic Rule of internet forums: if you are asking ‘am I good enough’ in a passive way, but what you really want is to be flattered and fish for praise, then it’s never going to work. Seen it everywhere, not just this forum. Equestrian forums are rife with people posting videos of themselves riding, asking for advice, and then flipping out when their riding is critiqued. Uh, well, why did you ask then?

What did the OP want from this thread? Seriously — what were your intentions?

@Boyen, like every tune, it depends on where you are. The only time I have heard the Moving Cloud played here was at a session where a fairly inexperienced piper, when asked to start a tune, set off with that one, which is really bloody difficult on the pipes, stumbled through it, and no one knew it so no one could help him. Poor chap. Goes back to what I said above. Learn the tricksy, twisty tunes to your heart’s content, but as a developing player (or really anybody), it’s smart to have ‘safety’ tunes well in hand, so when asked to start something, especially in a situation where nerves might get the upper hand, you have tunes you’re less likely to screw up.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

I really can’t understand why my playing is a million miles off from some of Micho Russel’s recordings. His playing is very rudimentary and just sounds similar to ‘notes put next to each other’ as someone said of my playing.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wrpLZSPSfxk


That recording just sounds like an amateur to me. I don’t see what is so magical and out of this world with something like the above recording compared to what I did.

I mean if you were talking about Brian Finnegan or Orlaith Mcauliffe then of course I would justly bow my head in reverence!

But I just don’t see why people say mine is so crap compared to someone like Micho Russell in the example given. It seems more like just because he is a household name in the hallowed ‘church of trad’ he has ‘star power’ similar to the kardashians having some celebrity status ‘just because’ (he is one of my favorite players btw due to his stripped down simplicity so I am not trying to bash or be negative about him, I like his playing because it is ‘accessible’) and since am not ‘connected’ in that way and posting to a random forum then automatically my recording will receive a more negative appraisal. I am not saying my playing is GOOD I am just thinking the comments were overly negative just because of the setting they were heard.

I am not saying he isn’t better than me at playing but not in the leaps and bounds you guys are implying, but the other two mentioned yes that is clear and away no question and I fully admit I will never reach their heights!

And no I didn’t post just begging for praise I just feel, like I said, I can’t believe how my playing is worse to the degree people are saying vs someone like old Micho and it seems only because the listening ears were steeped in prejudice from the start.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

"I can’t believe how my playing is worse [than] someone like old Micho…"

Believe it.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

David, I get your point. But you did take it out of context.
Having said that, Wind Music, not all the replies are as negative as you make them out to be. Why are you going to such great lengths to reject things which members never said about your playing? I get how you’re upset but please consider some of the advice again before giving up on those offering help based on their experience, based on how they learnt when they were at the stage you are now beginning to experience.

Ben

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Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

"I really can’t understand why my playing is a million miles off from some of Micho Russel’s recordings. "
Then someone else will have to help you, as I can’t.
I’m done with this "discussion". Good luck with your music.

Posted by .

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Oh dear, WindMusic

Micho may be "rudimentary" as you say and without many of the "frills" of some of the other musicians you mentioned. However, he is very precise, note and timing perfect in what he does. That’s his take on traditional music which should be respected and not scorned.

I’m not a whistle player myself but while I think your clip is OK, I can tell that you are over stretching the limits of your ability in terms of speed, breathing, and so on. You may or may not be able to play this tune in public in due course either by "slowing down" and/or practising the pacing. As I say, I’m not a whistle player.

Certainly, you are not yet in the same league as Micho. It is not about being "leaps and bounds" ahead or playing the music fast or in a "fancy style". In fact, keeping things simple and steady usually takes even more musical discipline and skills.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Wind Music, you are going through a crisis in confidence. I can assure this will pass. Several people here has essentially offered to mentor you. Take advantage of their offers and move on. You have been offered an opportunity here. Take it.
I am a new player who has been given instruction and support from the wonderful people I session with,( in the context of my own embarrassment by the way).
You are not alone. LIFE.
Go for it, you are off to a great start!

OP: ‘Micho Russel’s recordings…playing is very rudimentary.. sounds similar to ‘notes put next to each other’

"Black and white" [Niall Keegan]
"As a young flute player in the early nineties I had the privilege to see Micho Russell perform a lunchtime concert… My world at the time, both musical and academic, was very black and white, and my own personal journey in many ways was one that looked for complexity as an end in itself. Thus the music of Russell
wasn’t one I expected to like or appreciate.

I found myself being dragged along because I should – his music was supposed to be important,…"

WM, you’re not the first one to underestimate Micho, in the gist of your characterisation of him.
Like Niall do you find yourself "being dragged along"?

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Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

I did not intend to comment, but WindMusic you really pointed it out yourself with this statement
"I really can’t understand why my playing is a million miles off from some of Micho Russel’s recordings. "

You dont have a fundamental understanding of the music! My advice is read, listen, read, listen, practise, read and listen some more. You’ll get there if you open your mind and listen.

Posted by .

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Re Micho,

I had the pleasure of hearing him play on two different occasions not long before his tragic death.

The first time was Tonder Festival in 1991, I think, when he appeared in a line up with Paddy Glackin and Tony McMahon.

The second occasion was a more informal, if not exactly spontaneous, affair. I was drinking in Gus O’Connor’s pub in Doolin when I heard the bar woman(Could have been manager, I don’t know) on the phone. "Hello Micho. We’ve got a coach due to arrive in a couple of hours. If you just fancy coming down and "be happening" to be playing a few tunes on your whistle when they arrive…"

Of course, I made sure I returned to enjoy the music myself and didn’t give the game away to the tourists who were lapping it all up. 🙂

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

To the OP.

Did you listen to your own recordings and what did you think? To me this is a great way to develop.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

That clip above with Micho got my foot reflexively tapping along. As a flute and mandolin player, I find it fascinating that an instrument with very little dynamic range like the whistle can instill a feeling for the beat in a listener, when played well like that. We have some tricks we can use with other instruments like a breath pulse on the flute, or digging in with the fiddle bow to push the dynamics. With a whistle, it’s all about the note timing.

I don’t know if this is any help to the OP, just an observation that may help explain why Micho is such a great player, even if he’s not surrounding every note with an ornamental flourish.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Windmusic, if you really can’t hear much difference between your own playing and Micho Russell’s you need to take a serious reality check!

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Its dance music, rhythm is no 1,2and3 in priority. Then comes the rest but untill you have the rhythm tight , i mean precise, like a drummer , then it will forever allude you .

If you try to copy , note for note, the playing of a “superstar” who has 30-60 years of fanatical dedication as.well as skill talent and a gift … but you avent got the basics mastered….
And even with tha basics mastered !! Its pointless , your 30 years behind on the fanatical dedication front!!
So , take simple tunes and polish them till they shine .
Being a musician could be said to be about transmitting feeling through communication via the instrument. In the case of dance music, that feeling is inspiration , excitement , joy, love , togetherness, to bring the people together and celebrate life, love and happiness .
Everything else is a means to this end . All the technical aspects all the notes etc the music itself is secondary to the effect it has on people .
Its about feeling , how does music make us feel .
Thats why Micho was so good , its not in the hands , in its the heart .

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Some people might say that your inability to differentiate your playing from Micho Russel’s is a sign of a lack of experience.

At the very fundamentals of the genre.

But you could release an album - name it “Micho 2 - adventures with WindMusic”

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

I followed ya’ll’s advice about practicing an easier and better known tune.

Is this any better? https://clyp.it/vzfzzs4g

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Oh, Hell yeah! Very nice. Got my foot tapping, even.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

@WindMusic: Much better. As an individual player, there’s still plenty of room for improvement: your phrasing sounds a little stilted to me, not quite as flowng as it could be; your ornamentation could use some ‘tightening up’. It’s a bit short of typical session speed; that is not a problem in itself - it’s far better to play well at a tempo you are comfortable with than rush ahead and make a hash of it - but be prepared for the fact that some players may have a tendency, when they join in, to speed the tune up towards their habitual tempo (their failing, not yours - but such is the reality of sessions). But the timing is steady, all the notes are there… As a *relatively* experienced player, I would have no problem playing along with this in a session (I can’t vouch for anyone else).

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

I think that last clip is perfectly fine to trot out in public! Playing a wind instrument solo is a difficult thing for mixing the breathing into the phrasing to give it the perfect flow, but that will just come with time and playing it repeatedly with other people. And I think that might be what you need most — playing with other people as much as you can.

It sounds like you already play in some sessions, but that you still feel like a bit of an outsider? My suggestion is that, instead of worrying about whether you’re good enough, just become part of the session. Get to know the people, be fun to hang out with, and they’ll take you in as part of their session so that you don’t feel like you need to prove yourself with a show tune. The more playing you do with other people, the better you will get at it, and your confidence will be much better, too. 🙂

And don’t get too worked up by the nitpickers on the forums here. Everybody has to start somewhere, and hopefully most of the people here remember what it was like to be where you are in your progression as a player… I certainly got smacked down by people here a few times 10-15 years ago (even unsolicited, when someone posted a link to my profile so that they could try to shame me…), and you just have to chalk it up to the impersonal nature of an internet forum. I am not saying that people are wrong, I’m just saying that there was some constructive criticism that came across as mean spirited instead of helpful, even if the intent was actually to help. So don’t worry too much about it, and just go play some tunes!

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

Thank you brother. Good advice re sessions. I am actually looking for the local scene as I recently moved.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

WindMusic has provided a perfectly decent version of Dunmore Lasses, its not perfect but then few of us are. Like CMO I too would be happy enough playing along with this at a sess but yes I’d probably want to push the tempo a bit. He’s had a fair bit of slagging on this forum [ok some of it from me] but this is the way to go - keep working on it WM!

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

"WindMusic has provided a perfectly decent version of Dunmore Lasses"

that was all I was looking to accomplish when posting my OP rather than ‘begging for ego stroking’ as some others said earlier.

I just would like to have a few that are ‘session level approved’ then I would feel more happy about going to some more local sessions with those ones ‘in the can’ and polished.

So I just need to lower the bar a pick a few more like dunmore lasses. I actually was rusty at playing it, so much of the loose ends are because I only started playing it again since two days or so ago having not played it in nearly a year.

I *do* understand about phrasing (maybe there is more advanced to learn surely but the rudiments), I know very well there are two on beats per 8 notes at 1 and 5; I just don’t have the tunes polished and have most of my processing power thinking about not making any mistakes rather than focusing on phrasing.

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

WindMusic: The clip of "The Dunmore Lasses" was much better than "The Moving Cloud", which was obviously too difficult for you.
You have a steady rhythm, which is essential for this type of music. You’re playing "The Dunmore Lasses" at a tempo you can handle, not too fast, which is good.
But, you have to practise how to fit your ornaments into the rhythm. This is best done live with a teacher to help you. Especially find out how to play rolls. You have skipped all the rolls in your recording of "The Dunmore Lasses", but in "The Moving Cloud" it’s obvious you have misunderstood the rhythm of rolls.
And you have to find out how to get an in-tune high c natural. The fingering oxo xxx works fine on my tin whistles, hope it works for yours too.
I would definitely recommend finding a live teacher, if only for a few lessons.
Good Luck!

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

WindMusic, never mind the time signatures. Just feel the music, listen to lots of it. When you learn a new tune, listen to different versions, with different instruments, not only flutes or whistles. Play it a thousand times. Make it yours. And when you feel the tune flowing naturally that’s when it’s good enough for others to enjoy. And use those ornaments that you really control. Taps, cuts and rolls are rythmic effects, if you can hear a different note with every movement of your fingers, they are wrong and it’s better to avoid them. Play, listen, play, listen, and always enjoy!

Re: Moving clouds reel whistle - is this playing ‘good enough’ to be play in public without embarrassment?

You’re doing fine and will progress well when playing with others!

Keep it up! And don’t stop learning!