Irish Accompaniment and Appalachian Fiddle
I was at an Oldtime jam recently that was overrun by several Bluegrass guitar and mandolin players, as is wont to happen wherever Bluegrass musicians lurk. Their refusal to do anything other than boom-chuck and chop with your standard guitar open chord shapes and mandolin closed chop shapes gave all the tunes a feel similar to what you get when a less-than-perceptive guitar player does the same thing at a session, with similarly bad results.
This got me wondering, do you think there is space for Irish style accompaniment, or at least accompaniment informed by ITM, in Appalachian fiddle music? I’m thinking of particularly of the sort of DADGAD guitar Mícheál Ó Domhnaill played on Promenade and Portland, tenor guitar, or possibly even bouzouki or octave mandolin (provided the Oldtime police wouldn’t arrest you for daring to bring an instrument not on the official list of approved Oldtime instruments). After all, Appalachian fiddle music is similarly melody focused with frequent use of drones, and subtle harmony that is ill served by the sort of standard hammering-on-first-position-open-chord-shape accompaniment that is typical of a Bluegrass jam.
By "space," I mean do you think that the music could benefit from this type of accompaniment? Do you think there is a possibility of this type of accompaniment becoming an accepted part of Oldtime? Are there guitar players or Oldtime bands that already use a style informed by the forms of accompaniment common in ITM?