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Electric violins have always been controversial instruments. What many don’t realise however is just how versatile they really are. These exciting instruments offer a huge range of options that simply aren’t available on an acoustic instrument. If you want to experiment with sounds, explore new genres and have fun with loop pedals and different effects, then the electric violin is definitely the right choice for you. Your heart may lie with traditional Irish music but perhaps you’re tempte...
The process of building a bodhrán is truly magical. I love nothing more than seeing one of my favourite musical instruments take shape before my eyes. I've been honing my craft for over 40 years now, and yet it never ceases to amaze me. The art of bodhrán making is something that intrigues many people. Curious customers frequently ask me about the process, wanting to know more about how their brand new instrument was created. So I thought I'd share my process. If you want to learn how this b...
Despite the popularity of B/C tuning within the modern world of traditional Irish music, the C#/D press and draw system was actually around first! This traditional style of Irish button accordion playing is based on the simple 10 key one row melodeon system. So it makes sense, due to the popularity of the Irish melodeon, that the C#/D accordion would follow in its footsteps. Like the B/C system, there has been no shortage of brilliant press and draw accordion players over the years. But who are ...
In what has already been a strange and unpredictable year, the emerging trend that has most taken me by surprise is the sudden surge in the popularity of sea shanties. For reasons this auld fella may never understand, there's been a resurgence of these nautical working songs. How did all begin? Climb aboard and we'll go on a quick adventure... The Wellerman It all started when a young Scottish man's rendition of the 19th century whaling song, Soon May the Wellerman Come - or The Wellerman as it...
Whether you prefer to strum along to lively Irish dance tunes or to accompany soulful Irish ballads, there's no shortage of talented Irish bouzouki players to look to for inspiration. From Donal Lunny to Alec Finn and Andy Irvine these legendary players have done it all! I often receive requests from Irish bouzouki and mandolin players who want to follow in the footsteps of these masters, but don't know where to start. More and more have listened to the likes of the brilliant Daoirí Farrell ...
I love nothing better than learning a new tune. Exploring how the melody is shaped. How it feels under your fingers. Taking the time to practice and perfect before adding your own personal touches. Judging by the number of requests I receive for tune recommendations, my customers agree. Luckily, within the Irish music tradition, there’s no shortage of tunes to learn. Our rich musical heritage is blessed with a wealth of repertoire that has been handed down from generation to generation. This...
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