Who’s who and who plays what?

Who’s who and who plays what?

There have been some truly fantastic discussions going on here lately. I feel like I’m getting to know the people chatting here. Still, I’d like to get to know you all better.

Who feels like formally introducing themselves? Let’s hear where you live, what instrument you play and anything else you feel like adding (like how you first got in to the music and why you play the instrument you do).

I’ll get the ball rolling…


My name is Jeremy. I’m from the town of Cobh in Cork. Right now I’m living in Brighton, England having spent the last few years in Freiburg, Germany.

My main instrument is the bouzouki which I use more for melodies than backing. I also play a bit of banjo and I started out on the mandolin.


Okay, that’s enough from me for now. Now, it’s your turn…

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

My name is Joe. I am originally from St. Louis, MO and now I live in Portland, OR. I have been playing the fiddle for a year and a couple months. I just recently started going to sessions about a month ago and should mention that this website has been a big help. I got into the fiddle after many, many listens to a Tom Dahill tape - "Live at Harling’s Upstairs". I have been a guitar player for the past 17 years and needed a new challenge, which the the fiddle has definately provided. Currently, my favorite tune is a Christie Barry jig, but that’ll probably change in the next few weeks.

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

My name is Glauber. I’m from Rio de Janeiro, Brasil, living in the USA (just west of Chicago) since 91. My mother’s family is originally from Freiburg — they were among the founders of the city Nova Friburgo ("New Freiburg") in Brasil.

I’ve been playing flutes for over 20 years. I’ve dabbled in Irish music for a few years, but only recently started getting good at it.

I love Irish music because of the range of expression that it allows the flute, for allowing the flute to be a solo instrument at the same level with the others.

I haven’t played in any sessions yet besides this one. I’m still building repertoire and don’t know any live sessions in the area where i live. I also play whistle.

One of my email addresses is "theglauber at gmx.net".

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

I’m Kerri. Brief synopsis: Raised in Calgary, took classical piano and singing lessons until high school, started teaching myself guitar after I started to find classical piano too rigid - when I was 13 I brought a song I’d written into a lesson and the teacher didn’t even want to hear it, so I thought "then why am I learning all this stupid theory?" and quit. I was an angsty singer / songwriter living in Vancouver for much of my trendy but confused early adulthood. I learned to play djembe and didgeridoo in Vancouver (of course), then a friend gave me her violin because she was moving to New Zealand and couldn’t take it. I had it sitting around for a while, then I moved to Hornby Island for an extended hermitage (Vancouver is really depressing in the winter) and instead of being a hermit, I found myself completely absorbed into the community. There happened to be a Scottish woman teaching fiddle on the island (and a fiddle MAKER, if you can believe it), so I took a few lessons. After me third or fourth lesson, there also happened to be a massive Celtic music festival on the island. (this tiny Island has a population of maybe 8 or 9 hundred hippies and draft dodgers, so it’s quite a string of coincidences) The kick off night there were about 75 or 80 people in the community hall having a massive session - four or five uillean pipes, ten or twenty flutes, harps, guitars, bodhrans, and forty fiddles at least. In retrospect that’s a bit big for a good session, but I had a wonderful time, and I was completely hooked. When I moved back to Calgary a few months later I joined a Celtic-ish band as a multi-instrumentalist. We played together for just about the whole three years I lived in Calgary, and when I moved to Toronto we were just starting to hit our groove - we played at a few little festivals and a couple of the most notable bars in town. In the process I met a fantastic bodhran maker and discovered the dynamic potential of the drum - I’m hooked on that too. Now I’m bandless in Toronto, but using my down time to hone a few skills that have been on the back burner for a long time - like guitar accompaniment and non-bar band fiddling.

Ta daaaaa.

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Well, let’s see. My name is Zina Lee. (Lee is the last name.) I live in Denver, Colorado, though I was born in San Francisco, California.. I started off with Irish stepdancing, of all things (I suppose that now you see more Asians in Ireland, but it still looks a little startling to see me amongst all the ringlets), and currently teach one day a week for my dance school. The dancing got me into the music; one day my dance teacher found out that I’d played a viola in school, and told me to take up the fiddle because she needed live music for a show. I farted about for two years or so, and then married and honeymooned in Ireland. We met up with Matt and Shannon Heaton and Beth Leachman of Siucra while in Ireland, and from there on out, I started actually playing rather than just dabbling (and dabbling poorly). In fact, I often think that, really, I didn’t start playing until the beginning of this year.

I’m a writer (though not for a living at the moment); I have articles up for The Celtic Cafe (http://www.celticcafe.com) in the music section, and will shortly be starting a mini-e-zine within the Cafe called The Hidden Note, which will focus on not only the music in general (we cover all the genres encompassed by "Celtic"), but upcoming, independent, new, small-label, and/or unknown artists and bands. To make a living, I’m a freelance web designer. (Just lost my major client, anyone got any leads?!)

I also have just begun a new company here in Denver called The Cuirt House, along with my two partners. We bring in great traditional artists and bands to do small, intimate performances and, most importantly, to teach through private and group lessons, workshops and master classes. So far, we’ve had in Timothy Britton, the uillean piper, Siucra (http://www.siucra.net) and Dearga, and we’re thrilled to be presenting Andy Irvine on September 20-21. The lead tutors of Scoiltrad are on line for November (http://www.scoiltrad.com), and we’re talking to many artists for next year.

That’s it in a nutshell! I’m dying to hear about everyone else, too!

Zina

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hi to all. My name is Arbo. I have been living in Brooklyn for the past 12 years, but I’m originally from the Bay Area in Calif. I play whistle, low whistle, and flute. I am basically self-taught, and have been playing Celtic music for over 15 years. I began playing this music after seeing Dedannan perform at the Philadelphia Folk festival. Right away I knew- yeah, that’s the music I want to be playing… I sit in on sessions here in NYC when I don’t have to be up early the next morning (I teach). Innthe early eighties, I played with the group ‘Wicky Sears’ which was based in Ithaca, New York. We played for several years up and down the East coast. Currently, I am working on the fiddle (been at it about 10 months now). I find it extremely challenging and rewarding, but no replacement for the flute. Enough for now- this thread is fun, isn’t it?

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Thanks, Jeremy, for the lead. I’ve been enjoying getting to know this core group of contributors and hoped it would blossom into this sort of exchange.

Will Harmon here, in the provinces of Helena, Montana. I’m a free-lance writer—you can all say you now know someone who actually supports a family using his English Literature degree. I’m an army brat, so I’ve lived all over the States and also in Italy when I was a wee tyke.

I suffered thru the obligatory piano lessons until I was 10, then switched to drums (my mom was state drum champ in high school in Denver some 60 years ago), then bluegrass banjo in the late 1970s. I added guitar and mandolin, picking tunes off public radio from the suburbs of Philadelphia. That’s where I first heard Mick Moloney’s show on WXPN and nearly cut my fingers off while slicing a tomato for a midnight fajita when the Bothy Band scladed the airwaves with Farewell to Erin.

So I bought a fiddle and I’ve been trying to catch Kevin Burke’s rhythm and effortless and oh-so-crisp left hand and Tommy Peoples’s heart and soul for the last 20 years.

I co-founded a session here in Helena, and for a town of 28,000 we have a surprising number of talented players. Six of the group have done gigs around town and the state, but all of us have real jobs, real families, real health issues, etc., so we try to keep the high-profile jobs to a minimum. I try to keep the Irish music obsession in check by taking up precious practice time with mountain biking, snowboarding, and hiking.

It’s great to meet all of you, and I really value these conversations. Everyone have a round on me!
Will

Posted .

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hello all, my name is Dave and I’m from the West Riding of Yorkshire although I’ve been living in London for the past 17 years.Having a chip on both shoulders,I’m a very well-balanced Yorkshireman.(For those of you not from these isles,take no notice of that last sentence!)

I play viola with a ballet orchestra and generally try to freelance,some years being better/worse than others.I took up the fiddle nearly nine years ago because I could n’t keep away and it’s a big part of my life.Progress is slow and painful due in no small measure to a classical training but we all have to start somewhere.(‘Hotshot’ has never been used to describe either my viola or fiddle playing,Kerri!)

Sorry for the username but it’s just the one I use on some other sites as I can never remember to switch and there’s quite a few of us Daves floating around.I go to sessions when I can and enjoy the company and the drink,oddly eough.Since 1983 I’ve gone to Ireland every year for much the same reasons plus the hills.
Just to add,I have no Irish ancestry and am not interested in becoming’ more Irish than the Irish’ but the sound of pipes/fiddle or flute has always hit me right in the guts. I’m looking forward to finding out a bit more about all you others out there too.Don’t be shy!
Dave

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Greetings, all, I’m Jeff. I live in New Jersey despite my best efforts to escape. I’ve played guitar for over 30 years and violin/fiddle for 35 with a five-year break in the middle when some son of a b!@*# stole my violin and I had to save from my then-meager salary until I could afford another (yes, I could have gotten one sooner, but at the time guitar was my main thing). I’ve also recently started on hammered dulcimer, which isn’t quite as hard as I’d feared.

I’ve been in numerous bands, many of them were hard rock groups, but a couple have had a folk/Celtic direction. The best were Summerland (with singer Willow Farwell) and The Beansidhe Court (with harpist Erika Lieberman, and which may get resurrected soon).

Well, enough about me. Next?

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hello,
Brad Maloney here, um grew up in NJ. Took trumpet lessons as a kid, hated it. Learned guitar at around 14, learned mostly gospel-country-blues stuff (Rev Gary Davis & John Hurt stuff). Got turned on to fiddle by Billy Bang (Jazz) & Papa John Creach (Blues) but still made a habit out of hanging around CBGB’s & Coney Island High in NYC. Crispy old folkies gave me the heebie-jeebies & I tried to distance myself as much as possible. Since my family was Irish (Lietrim/Sligo) I had always had exposure to the music but didn’t take it too seriously. I heard Tony DeMarco (Fiddler) in NYC, he gave me a couple of lessons for a couple of months. He turned me on to Martin Wynn, Andy McGann, Lad O’Bierne etc.. I then joined the Air Force for some kind of direction, but the Air Force & I parted ways three months after my enlisting & I ended up in Providence, RI. I’m still playing fiddle & am a big fan of my NYC/Sligo roots. I also dick around with mando, banjo or anything else with strings tuned in 5ths.

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

I’ve posted only one message before this one, back in June, but have been reading the site and using it for tune references. I am in Bozeman, Montana (Hi, Will) and I am a singer. I was born in Great Falls, MT, and raised mostly in Helena. I’ve lived in Bozeman since 1970, since coming here for my degree in fine art. I started on the penny whistle back in about 1975, but didn’t stick with it, so now after all these years I am picking it up again. My grandfather was from Leitrim, my grandmother from Yorkshire. Irish music was always something in the environment of my family growing up. I studied piano until high school, but kept music to myself at home until discovering our session here in Bozeman in 1996. I join in there on the guitar, but usually I’m the one called on for a song when it’s time to break from the tunes. I have some sound files of singing as well as my portfolio (I’m a professional illustrator) at my website, www.aliceflynn.com My son Ryan is 14, and plays mandolin and violin. Nice to meet all of you.

Alice

Who’s where and how do we reach you?

OK, Jeremy may wish a plague on me for this, but does anyone else think it would be good if the member profiles included rough geographic location (country and state/province/whatever), what instrument(s) you play, and (optionally) your e-mail so that those who wanted to could actually get together from time to time?

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Wow, I just wandered through the members listings. I had no idea there were so many members!

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

hi, oh this is a good idea jeremy! may name is lauren and im a fiddler from ross-shire, scotland. im 15 and have been playing for 6 years, but only 4 years for tradtional music. i have picked up tunes and styles from various feisian and tutors at fiddle events in scotland. i enjoy lisenting to fiddlers from cape breton, as wlel as scottish ones, but i am new to the irish ones! i play my great-uncles fiddle, a nice hand-me down, and my trade-mark is my red fiddle case! sessions are a bit scarce where i live…and being underage is a bit difficult to get into the bars! one day i will hopefully get over to ireland to experience the music their and learn some more good tunes like these(thanks everyone!!). im influence by some of the great fiddlers of today erm, john mccusker, alasdair fraser, catriona macdonald and natalie macmaster, these are just a few. well this is a snippet of my life! gotta go, more may follow, nice meetin you all! laurenx

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Good Day All,
Im Ted from Barrie, Ontario just north of Toronto, I play Fidddle and Highland bagpipes.
My family is originally from Cavan… transplanted to Belfast, although I am Canadian (born here)
I play in a pipe band, and occasionally with a celtic rock group out of Barrie. I also make my way
down to Toronto to visit some local friends/ musicians and hoist a pint.
In my younger days I was an accomplished Irish dancer and played a little piano.
I enjoy all Irish music as well as many Down East and Cape Breton tunes.
Slainte
Ted

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hi. I am Tom Joyce, and I am from the Chicago area. I play tin and low whistles, and have been playing for only about three years. I am a member of the Irish Heritage Singers and began messing around with a whistle to pass the time. I have been hooked ever since. I love all forms of Irish music…I play traditional tunes with my brother (guitar & mandolin), cousin (harmonica & some accordian), and 2 friends (one guitarist and one tin whistle) and sing on a regular basis with the singers. The thing about the site that l like, Jeremy, is that my playing tends to be biased to the way I sing and the information I have received from the site has helped me to round out my playing style. If anyone in the chicago area is interested in playing or singing, particularly playing (at an intermediate level) please email.
Tom

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

My name is Stefanie Bieber and I am from Frankfurt/Germany. I play flutes and harp and have come to the Irish music just about three years ago by coincidence. Since my first workshop in this style of music I completely changed my practice-programm to learning tunes, ornamentations and the rhythmic specialities of this music and have a lot of fun with it.
In "normal" life I am a fluteteacher with a classical background but no longer a "just-classical" intention.
Stefanie

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hi, I’m Eva McCauley and I live on the road to Damascus (if you can imagine…..it’s a wee hamlet 20 min. north of Guelph, Ontario, Canada—-2 hours n.w. of Toronto) . I played paino as a kid but found the classical approach too dry and stilted—-switiched to claimmediately became thoroughly addicted to the instrument and irish music. My husband plays Highland pipes, Scottish smallpipes, English medieval bagpipers, whistle and bodjran—-so we started a session in Elora, Ontario about a year and a half ago and it’s grown to almosy 15 musicians some nights….it’s a great session and going strong. Sometimes I visit Doras in Toronto (wondering if I’ll run into the "fiddleronvermouth" there sometime? I’d love to meet you!) My husband Robin and I play together at Renaissance fairs and other gigs sometimes….fiddle and pipes sound great together. Although I haven’t contributed much to discussions in the past, I’m an avid lurker, and consider this a great resource for tunes and ideas——I really appreciate it’s existence! Cheers! Eva McCauley robin.aggus@sympatico.ca

Posted by .

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

I am Mike Euritt, and though I’ve been reading this list nearly since the beginning, today I am posting for the first time.

I’ve played anglo concertina for about 15 years and uillean pipes for about 6.

I live in San Rafel, California, about 10 miles north of San Francisco

I’ve met and played a few tunes with Zina…Hello Zina :-)

I’ve been playing for Irish dancers both competive and ceili for about 6 years,and have done both solo and as part of a band, and I’ve played numerous gigs and weddings around the north bay area.

Mike

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

MIKE!!!! Hi! I had a system crash and lost your e-mail address, so I’m SO glad to have a way to contact you again!!!!!

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hallo, my name is Luca I

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hello. I’m Marian, live in Portland, Oregon. Just getting into Irish session playing, although I did quite a bit of Irish in old-timey playing and dance music about 20 years ago. Session playing is a different sort of thing. I play mandolin and am getting better on the guitar. Learning Dropped-D tuning from a super video by John Doyle. On Friday, Sept. 7 at 7:00 p.m. there is a Friendly Irish Music Circle at Friendly House in NW Portland, corner of NW 26th and Thurman — all levels, all ages. I’m hoping we can get some arrangments going, build a repertoire, get to know one another in a comfortable environment (no "audience", no pressure).

Friendly House has been having a Friendly Music Circle for all sorts of acoustic music for about 6 months, and is it ever great! Super laid back. There are professionals and beginners there, and everyone in between.

Any Portlanders (Joe, have we met?) are sure welcome next Friday to the Friendly Irish Music Circle.

Marian

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hello, folks. I’m Alastair and I live in Edinburgh (Scotland). I play mandolin and guitar-but mainly mandolin for Session type music.

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hello all

I’m Caroline from Manchester, England.

I’ve been learning fiddle for nearly 3 years-was told it was hard for an "adult"(whatever that is!) to pick up but I’d say time consuming. But I love it. I always wanted to play something but never got chance til recently.

I love all sorts of traditional music but Irish wins so far despite no Irish roots and a Scottish grandma. I also like other types of music- folk-rock and some world music.

I’m too nervous yet to go to a session-if anyone could recommend one locally I’d be forever grateful.

Got into discussion with Wil a few weeks ago about learning reels which has been helpful- thanks again. Getting there slowly but surely and having fun.

Caroline

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Greetings everyone,

My name is Brendan and I’m from Chicago. I’ve been playing the tin whistle for about seven years, ever since I picked up my first whistle while travelling through the now legendary town of Doolin in Ireland. Having acquired an Irish flute about five months ago, I can now be seen huffing and puffing my way through tunes on the flute at various sessions around Chicago. I also have a low D whistle that I bust out every once in a while. When I’m not playing tunes, I can often be caught at a library or caf

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hey! Bernard Farrell-violin. Virginia Beach. Groups: Spuds, Road Kill, Imminence, Dragon Dance. The White Horse Inn, Independence and Virginia Beach Booulevard has a session/open mike most Wednesdays- 757 4997360.

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hi,

My name’s Bill Haines and I currently live in Knaresborough, North Yorkshire, UK. I am originally from London but have moved around Britain a bit (Gloucestershire, Yorkshire, Bangor [North Wales]) whilst I was working as an ecologist, a vocation I had to give up unfortunately due to very few posts and even less money!

I play mandolin, guitar and bouzouki (or however you spell it!) and a tiny bit of whistle. I have toyed with the idea of the fiddle but I have a) never had a spare ten years and, b) a large uninhabited space the size of the Isle of Wight in which to practise!

I can’t remember how or when I first got interested in Celtic music. Ithink it may have been something to do with the Thin Lizzy Track The Black Rose, and various Horslip albums.

I run a weekly session on Thursday at the Mitre Hotel in Knaresborough, so if anyone feels like dropping in… (better drop me an email first as the next few weeks are a little different [holidays, etc]).

I love playing in minor keys and am always after new tunes, the only down side being that no other bugger seems to know them!

I have not yet contributed to any of the discussions or tunes, but I did sent out a lot of tunes to various people when the session was in its pervious incarnation, so some of you might know me from that.

That’s about all for now. Hopefully “talk” to you soon

Posted by .

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hi,

My name’s Andy McKenna. Orginally, I’m from Howth, Co. Dublin, but now I’m living in Southern California….to be near the surf capitals of the World!!! (another passion)

I play mandolin (not well, I should add!!) and play mostly slow airs and tunes that I remember from holidays at home…mostly Planxty and Dubliners stuff.

I love some of the discussions on the website, but I think that everyone needs to be more laid back. Remember that in traditional music, the music is more important than the "traditional" rules. Irish music is best suited to be played by anyone with the passion for it. It matters not the speed, but the emotion that comes through. I always hold to the philosophy that I would rather play one tune with passion than a thousand without. There will always be certain tunes, and certain players, who can stop me in my tracks and make the hairs stand up on the back of my neck (Christy Moore, playing the Bodhran, singing the Raggle Taggle gypsy,on the Late Late Show for starters)


With regard to posting tunes, I must admit that I don’t consider myself as good a judge as the regular contirbutors, so I’ll keep letting them do a great job.

Jeremy, thanks for a wonderful site. The collection of tunes is a real credit and a testament to the power and beauty of the tradition.

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

I’m a Norwegian living in Oslo.

I play the fiddle and ejoy music in two "camps": Irish fiddling in sessions and norwegian folk music in a group (Osterdolenes spelemannslag) counting 20-25 fiddlers.

Wheras the Norwegian community seems to have an emphasis on playing traditional music in a certain style from a defined area (we even practice the bow directions!), I find that the focus in irish music is much more on the exchange of tunes and the quality of the tunes (rather than the performance) .

Norwegian music is great, but irish tunes and sessions even better!

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hello all Sessioneers, My name is Paul Davis, I am a transplanted Irishman who now calls Beautiful
Cape Breton,N.S. home. I have lived here for 25 years and I am now a self taught whistle
player. Back in 1982, I began hosting a one hour weekly Traditional/Folk on my local radio station.After a few years at this
I developed a passion for Irish music and decided I had to learn to play something.I picked the whistle as I was’nt sure if I
had any music in me( and whistles were cheap!). Happily, I am now considered an intermediate player around these parts
I am also happy to report The Music of Ireland-the little radio programme that could will celebrate it’s 1000th edition next January.
The show is webcast every Sunday at 7:05pm(Atlantic Time) and can be heard at:
www.1015thehawk.com
Happy to be part of this great website. Slainte to one and all Paul E.Davis

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

I’m a little confused as to who I am due to the odd Irish habit of having 2 versions of one’s name - one in English and one as Gaelige. But for the purposes of this I’ll call myself Pol. I play mandolin and guitar on long island n.y. - transplanted there from Ireland via England 4 1/2 years ago. I came to traditional music a bit late , about 6 or 7 years ago (er, I’m 35) but had been playing guitar before that and picked up the mandolin especially for the trad. I wouls say I’m an intermediate player (I know, Iknow, I’ve been playing for a while now - I put it down to lack of practice). I play with a Galician fiddler friend of mine, Irish and Galician tunes . If I ever learn to read and write notation I’ll post some tunes. Brad, I visit Providence a lot, maybe I’ll see you in RiRa one of these days.
slan,
Pol

Posted by .

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Entering and signing in:
Hi, I’m Ty, from Conncecticut, USA, and I’m a new Sessioneer. First instrument was piano, but that’s fallen by the wayside. Second and third were guitar and recorder. I’ll still strum a bit, but the recorder has been put aside in favor of the whistle. Primary instrument is the hammered dulcimer.
I play in session twice a week, and manage to hit about 1/3 of the notes in half the tunes.
Great site! This is going to be FUN!

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

My name is Keith, 20 years old and from Saskatchewan, Canada. I got my first Tin Whistle (a Clarke in the key of D) in the mail yesterday, so I’m an absolute beginner. Before this I played guitar for 10 years, but have been in a slump lately and decided to try something else. My dad plays in a pipe band, which is my only experience with traditional music of any kind. I have applied to join the Navy, so hopefully soon I’ll be off to Quebec and then Nova Scotia. If anyone could suggest some beginners tunes it would be greatly appreciated.

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hi, I’m Joe McCollam and I live in Los Angeles. I got a tin whistle (Acorn) a couple of weeks ago, not realizing it was addictive. My previous musical background involves lots of bass playing (in any genre), a 5-year flirtation with Bluegrass mandolin, low brass instruments in high school, and my most current musical obsession (besides whistle/Irish Music), the Chapman Stick. But I’ve always loved Irish music and had wanted to try the whistle ever since I heard a guy play some jig on it in a Scottish import shop in Redlands (wow! no tonguing!) , a few years ago. I’ve also got out an old (metal) flute I’ve had hanging around for years and never played, and am starting long-tone exercises on it, with a view to getting and playing an Irish flute someday. I’d love to find a celtic-friendly flute teacher in my area!

Posted by .

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hello!

My name is Kevin Muldoon and I’m from Dallas, Texas. I’ve been playing Sligo fiddle style for 4 years. Learning this instrument/genre has been a source of joy and wonder (and often times black and bitter frustration!). I wouldn’t trade it for the world!

I came to this instrument after finding an Irish session and determining I could never play guitar up to the level of some of the sessioners (very good finger picking style). I switched to fiddle because I though it would be challanging enough to make me work at getting good. I wouldn’t say I’m good yet, but it is very challanging and I have certainly worked at it! Two out of three ain’t bad!

If you are new to the music, here is my PSA.

BUY ALBUMS. LISTEN CRITICALLY. LISTEN CONSTANTLY. ALWAYS PLAY. NEVER STOP.

Looking forward to future posts!

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hi, all. I’m Scott Donaldson, live in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, and
started fiddling in the spring of 1983. If I had known what I was looking for, when I started the fiddle, I would have been a piper. All I knew, was there was this sound in my head, and the fiddle would let me get it.

Used to dj a local radio show, called the Golden Age of Radio, which focussed on Bluegrass and old time fiddle tunes. About the same time, I helped to form the Hamilton-Wentworth Old Tyme Fiddlers Association, and started writing fiddle columns for a Canadian bluegrass magazine, featuring interviews and tunes with fiddlers.

About 6 years ago, with very little talent to my credit, I started a business, fiddling in nursing homes, retirement homes and hospitals. I figured that if I charged a very modest fee, and played a lot, that I could make a living at it. So, 6 years later, I have done over 2500 shows. Do the occasional wedding, community events, a few fall fairs, occasionally a pub, that sort of thing, but mostly fiddle for seniors.

My motto is "If you’re having fun, then you are doing it right!"

Oh yeah, almost forgot. I have never told anyone this online. I have a dancing puppet. His name is WEE UNCLE ANGUS, he is 6 feet tall, wears a kilt and a tam, and he dances while I fiddle. Created him about a year and a half ago. He is based on the Quebec dancing puppets, and is a large scale, hands-free version. He performs the TERRIFYING, DEATH DEFYING PIROUETTE OF DOOM. He claims that no other dancer on the face of the earth has ever performed this manouvre and lived to tell about it :-) (That’s his story, and he is sticking to it, heh) Don’t try that at home kids. You too, Zina. Actually, it is just something a little different, a little off the wall, but it is a lot of fun. (My wife thinks that he just provides me with an outlet to play with dolls :)

Who is next…..

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hello, all. My name is Christine and I’m from California. Living in Sacramento at the moment, though I’m originally from a small Gold Rush town in the Sierra Nevada foothills. I’ve been playing fiddle for about 6 years after three years of teaching myself Irish mandolin from a book (by Padraig Carroll). I took three years of lessons on the fiddle and have been on my own ever since, working with the Peter Cooper and lately the Matt Cranitch book. Also learning off of cds when the tune is played slowly enough. Haven’t got one of those slow-it-down-without-changing-the-pitch programs yet!.

Got introduced to Irish tunes in 1976 when someone told me about Steeleye Span. I liked the singing, but I was nuts about the tunes. After that it was Bothy Band, Skara Brae, Planxty, The Chieftans, and Fairport Convention. At some point I realized that what I loved most was the fiddling. Eventually, all I was buying was fiddle albums. Kevin Burke, James Kelly, Irish Fiddle Festival, ect.

Starting to learn an instrument from scratch at 30 was torture, but I’m happy I did it. Now, six years into it things are starting to flow a bit. Haven’t been able to restrict myself to one style, though. I love the Sligo style, but I really have been enjoying Matt Cranitch’s two cds lately and I love Kevin Burke and Paddy Glackin. Oh, and I just discovered Mary Custy! I guess I’m hoping to eventually develop my own style with elements of each. Aside from Irish, I also like Morris tunes and am also just starting to investigate the English Fiddle tradition (Eliza Carthy, Kathryn Tickell). But Irish continues to be my main focus. It has something….I don’t know what….that speaks to me more than any other kind of music.

This list looks like it’s going to be fun!

Chris

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

I’m Bob, born in Maryland and live in Westfield, NJ. Been playing the B/C button box for about 1-1/2 years, tin whistle/low whistle off and on for maybe 10 years, guitar and harmonica for 30 years (mainly as part of a church folk group), and also have a set of Uilleann pipes I’m trying to start, dabble in bodhr

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hey, the names aoife, living in Dublin. Using my Dad’s log on name to write this so I’m not Bonxie. Been playing flute for about two years now. Considering getting a new one. any suggestions for suppliers?

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hi, my name is ole.
I’m 17 years old and i come from a little frisian island in the north of germany called f

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Greetings,

My name is John Harvey and I play Irish flute (http://www.skiphealy.com). I’m Irish in my mom’s side with family in Loughrea, Galway. I grew up outside Boston but also spent buckets of time in Rhode Island.

I currently live in Providence, RI. I’ve been a writer for a lot longer than I’ve been playing flute. My first horror novel, “The Cleansing,” will be published in January 2002. You can find out more, read chapter 1, and read more of my fiction at:

http://www.johndharvey.com

As a bill-paying gig, I work in marketing at a software company and write freelance arts & entertainment articles for the Boston Irish Reporter newspaper (http://www.bostonirish.com). I also run a Web site specifically for the Irish in Rhode Island at:

http://www.rhodeirish.net

Take care,
John Harvey
http://www.rhodeirish.net

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hi! My name’s Kelley and I’m from Virginia. I play the harp - mostly Scottish stuff, actually, but with a good bit of Irish music thrown in. A fiddler friend and I are releasing our first CD of Scottish music this fall, which is pretty much the most exciting thing I’ve ever done!!! You can see more about it (and me) at my website - www.geocities.com/fiddleandharp.

Best wishes!

Kelley

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hello, my name is Irina. I’m from Barcelona and I just came back from Galway after spending 1 year. I learnt how to play the whistle and then I bought my Seery flute in July.I love it and I think I’m doing pretty well, thanks to Noel Lenaghan who is also a member here. I like this site, it helps me a lot for practicing new tunes.

Posted by .

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hi, I’m Melisa, 24, from Melbourne Australia.

I have played ‘violin’ since I was about 6 (orchestras, classical etc). Then shifted my playing to more folky music about 5 years ago

have loved reading this site for a while, and have discovered some great tunes here…. would love to contribute a tune to the session tapes too.

cheers,
mel.

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hello. I’m Madonna. I live in Co. Down in the north of Ireland. I’ve been playing whistle in a folk/trad band for nearly 20 years, self taught with lots of bad habits. After recent workshops with Sean Ryan and Mary Bergin, I’ve started to overhaul my style. Pity it didn’t happen when I was wee.
Irish music has run in my family for generations. It’s a bit of an obsession. Having said that, family life keeps me from the sessions I’d like to go to. But when my sons get a bit bigger, I’ll take them too.

I love this site. I nearly feel like I know some of you from reading your discussions, and I’m fascinated that so many of you who play Irish music live so far from these shores. It’s a real compliment. Good Luck.

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hi, I’m Bloomfield. Well, actually my name is Manfred, but I always go by Bloomfield on line (don’t ask). I bought a tin whistle ten years ago and never played it because it was too hard. Can you imagine? About two years ago, I picked it up again and started picking out a tune, but nothing came of it. Then a year ago I got the but, went out and bought tutors and got serious, uhm… obsessed. I am self-taught, learn most tunes from sheet music but play along with CDs as often as I can. I have a low D whistle, but play it poorly. Just two days ago I moved up in the world of whistle players by acquiring an Overton soprano D. Ah, sweetness.

In real life, I have a desk job with long hours, two young kids and a wife who enjoys speaking to me better than listening to mangled bits of the Drunken Landlady. So my practice time is limited. But I do have a few tunes under my belt already and can’t wait for day when I take a swig of Guiness, a deep breath and play my first tune in a session.

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hi, I’m Florrie Snively, from Silver Spring, Maryland, which is basically a suburb of Washington DC. My music background is long and checkered, starting with piano lessons at age 6 (I don’t play now). In high school and college I had several years of classical voice training, about 1 year of classical guitar and a few lessons of folk guitar (and did a little writing with voice and guitar, but nothing of note). About 4 years ago I picked up a cheap 6-hole reed flute at the local renaissance faire and discovered the instrument I should have been playing all these years. Last year I upgraded to a moderately worthy flute, and now can play in the key that music is written in, but I keep talking myself out of going to the local sessions and playing with others. I’m looking forward to being able to afford a keyed flute so I can play those D#s, A#s and Fnaturals, but that’s still a ways off.

I basically taught myself to play the flute (using the fingering chart that came with the first flute and a copy of O’Neill’s Music of Ireland). Unfortunately, this means I have some really bad habits, like tounguing every note, and I’m weak on things like rolls. I’m actually looking for a teacher or coach in the DC area, if anyone knows of anyone.

In real life, I’m a counselor working with kids in foster care, which pretty much means lots of late nights visiting kids which can’t start until they get home from school. I find playing the flute is a great release for the stress that I sometimes bring home from the job.

I’ve been lurking on this website for over a year and a half, but this is only my second post.

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hi! Finally I found how to log on, so I can write something!! My name is Cecile, and I started to play irish music in US (Colorado), with Siucra, and Zina (hey Zina, so nice to read you here!!!). I loved it! I’m french and live in Clermont Ferrand (center of France); I play irish flute, and really enjoy it. Unfortunately there isn’t a lot of musicians here, and only one session every two weeks, and not a beginner one!!
When I have time I really enjoy to read all the very interesting discussions!

Cecile!

Cecile!!!!! How are you!? Why is it that whenever I see you these days, it’s always somewhere where I don’t expect it? I’m so happy that you at least have people to play with — how’s the playing going? I know we have other French people on this list…maybe we should start a support group up for you here. :)

Give me the news when you can!

Zina

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

I’m a newcomer, so welcome the opportunity to say hi to you all. My name is Dick Glasgow, frae Edinburgh, & with my wife, Sabine, is from Berlin. We, as professional musicians, play Medieval & Reanaissance music as the group Mandragora. We play music, in costume, with a Piper friend Patrick Martin, for the Medieval Banquets put on regularly at Carrickfergus Castle by ‘Medieval Ireland’ , & we played for their Banquet & Tournament at Shanes Castle, Co. Antrim recently. We also play music, at various events throughout Ireland, for Lynne & Boyd of ‘Irish Arms’ . . I have been a traditional musician for the past thirty years, ten of those professional. I play the Fiddle, Concertina, Banjo, Mandolin, Hammer Dulcimer, Tin Whistle & Bodhran. Sabine has been playing Clarsach for twenty years now. . In 1995 I founded my own School of Music, the ‘Jim McGill School of Traditional Music’, running numerous evening classes, & I have been teaching Traditional Irish & Scottish Music full time, freelance, in 15 local primary schools, from Portstewart round the coast to Waterfoot, for the past four years. In the schools I teach Fiddle, Whistle & Bodhran, both with pairs of students at a time, & groups of up to 20 children at a time. I also run a number of weekly evening classes, for kids & for adults, in various centres. around north Antrim. I run the ‘Black Nun Folk Club’, a club I started nearly four years ago. In that time I have been able to bring touring artists, from Scotland, England, Shetland, Isreal, Poland, Germany, U. S. A., & Africa, as well as many Irish & local artists, to our Portstewart club. . I have produced two CDs to date, & the music for a third. The first is a CD of my own tunes, & traditional tunes from the north Antrim area, played by myself & some local musicians. The second I recorded myself, & is of a group of my most enthusiastic students, ‘The Bandits’, playing their favourite tunes & songs. I have taken The Bandits over to perform at two Scottish Folk Festivals, in Campbeltown & Portpatrick. The third is a CD by north Antrim Rhymer, Charlie Gillen, for which I selected some suitable music, chose suitable musicans, & arranged the music to suit. . As well as the Medieval & Renaissance music mantioned above, we are also founder members of the north Antrim group, ‘Scad the Beggars’, who play traditional North Antrim music, Scottish Songs & north Antrim Rhymes. . We are also involved in a number of Traditional Music Pub Sessions on the Causeway Coast. If you check out August’s edition of the ‘Irish Music Magazine’, inside the back page, is an article on our Friday night session in Ballycastle, by Mac Spy, which gives an insight into the way I run my sessions. . Well I’m sure I’ve rambled on enough now. I look forward to our future discussions. Oh since I joined yesterday, I’ve managed to introduce another new member to the session fold, divilthebit, so watch out for his future comments & discussion topics too. . Dick

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

So, I’ve noticed a lot of names that I haven’t seen before in the last few days — PLEASE do post here on this ancient (but not decrepit) thread and let us know something about yourself…it’s great to see so posts from un-lurked lurkers and new members!

Zina

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Even better, put some stuff about you in your member profile; it’s much easier for us to read it there, just click on the user’s alias after any post.

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

What the heck, do both. :) Do the long version here and the short there.

zls

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Hi
I’m Willie and i’ve been playing the wooden flute for a couple of years. I am 43 and live in Ayrshire, Scotland and playing the flute and listening to ITM are my main interests. I ‘ve played guitar for about 30 years and as a non singer decided that I wanted a new challenge. I started out trying to play the box when I was in my mid 30s but couldn’t get to grips with it at all and then had a bash at the fiddle. Finally tried the flute and found that I could get a tune out of it and i’ve not put it down since. I find this site really encouraging and helpful although I haven’t posted much myself the encouragement from knowing that this community exists is amazing.

Re: Who’s who and who plays what?

Welcome, Willie! Do put in your two cents — the more the merrier!

Zina