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Leaving hard parts of tunes out?

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.. Leaving hard parts of tunes out?

Post by Gordy88 on Mon 2 Feb - 22:53:47

Following on from a Redneck post,

If a band leaves the more difficult parts of a tune out, should they be penalised against a band thats puts everything in, but in reality has more actual 'faults'?

We see it time and time again, bands crucifying a tune that is way too hard for them, or playing parts or movements very badly, we also see bands playing material a grade or 2 below them going up for prizes.

And to carry the thought on, should a band be penalised for playing stuff that is too easy for the grade?

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.. Re: Leaving hard parts of tunes out?

Post by Redneck on Mon 2 Feb - 23:49:10

Shoite, wat av a started here?..............good post m8.

Hmmmmm, my own preference would be to pick tunes that the entire pipe corps can play well and with confidence, 'n that means as per copy no diluting or bastardising. When this is done I feel the whole corps will have no hang ups nor worry about a certain tune coming up or a tight wee ending bar or movement which would detract from 100% concentration.

That in place, it would be up to whoever was in charge to get the best out of the performance, too many lower graded bands are wanna be grade1 ers......playing stuff outa their depth.
Don't get me wrong here, am not saying don't push it a bit, but be reserved in the choice of material to be played. Playing good musical tunes wi good sound will go a long way to getting results.

Gordy, leaving parts out is not right, ya mean simplifying the setting m8?, ya can't leave parts out.

Well a band playing wi butchered settings and mistakes, IMO will be beat by a band wi mistakes playing a full blown setting.

There again, if both had no mistakes, again the full setting would prevail.

This amazes me how supposedly grade1 players / PM's butcher tunes for a cleaner product, dump the pipers not capable 'n get players that can or..........play a smaller pipe corps of 16-18 ( lol, that's not even small IMO ) that way the best settings can be played, and you'll have a tighter corps too.

Next............?
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.. Re: Leaving hard parts of tunes out?

Post by orange_wings on Tue 3 Feb - 12:01:05

I know of a few bands that play tunes and rip all the work out of them, SFU at the worlds for example, MSR... not alot of work in the march, but, played well, with a great sound. I know of one "top" P/M who tells his pipers that aslong as they hit the tune the grace notes dont matter... To me, you should at least try to play the work at practise, if it turns out to be the bastard child of 2 other tunes because guys cant cope then see what can be put in the place of what the are not getting, or, remove it, but at least try to play it before the work is stripped out.
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.. Re: Leaving hard parts of tunes out?

Post by Redneck on Tue 3 Feb - 13:26:06

That's my whole point Peter. The composer writes the the with embellishments put in place to enhance ( as he sees it ) the melody of his composition, not to have some guy come along and butcher the friars tuck outa it.

There's a lot of this modern stuff wi nothing but grace-notes 'n hits, plain fingering at 300mph and IMO no real melody. This is all very well fer the dexterous finger work, but it seems that a good stiff M.S.R is the real measure of piping, controlled piping with all embellishments in place and played as a unit.

You have won many solo contests Peter, ya reckon yida got those prizes leaving out embellishments ?.............naw, a fear not m8. ( not picking on you m8 ;-)

You know where I'm coming from, from my point of view it seems today's high flyin' numbers game and pushin' the young uns da be competing certain elements have been neglected.

Good post, cheers Gordy, Peter.

BTW Peter, a heard what you were referring to ref' SFU......plain fingering was very evident in one tune in particular.
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.. Re: Leaving hard parts of tunes out?

Post by scots wa hae on Tue 3 Feb - 18:40:22

Redneck wrote:Shoite, wat av a started here?..............good post m8.

Hmmmmm, my own preference would be to pick tunes that the entire pipe corps can play well and with confidence, 'n that means as per copy no diluting or bastardising. When this is done I feel the whole corps will have no hang ups nor worry about a certain tune coming up or a tight wee ending bar or movement which would detract from 100% concentration.

That in place, it would be up to whoever was in charge to get the best out of the performance, too many lower graded bands are wanna be grade1 ers......playing stuff outa their depth.
Don't get me wrong here, am not saying don't push it a bit, but be reserved in the choice of material to be played. Playing good musical tunes wi good sound will go a long way to getting results.

Gordy, leaving parts out is not right, ya mean simplifying the setting m8?, ya can't leave parts out.

Well a band playing wi butchered settings and mistakes, IMO will be beat by a band wi mistakes playing a full blown setting.

There again, if both had no mistakes, again the full setting would prevail.

This amazes me how supposedly grade1 players / PM's butcher tunes for a cleaner product, dump the pipers not capable 'n get players that can or..........play a smaller pipe corps of 16-18 ( lol, that's not even small IMO ) that way the best settings can be played, and you'll have a tighter corps too.

Next............?
I couldnt agree more mate with that post! Now I have this arguement with ma bud each time we meet!!! I keep on saying to him that bands need to play to their weekest member, if that means playing a simpler tune well that is the way!! Again Ill bring up my war cry Up to the line if that tune was good enough for Frasers in grade 1 albeit a few years ago why is it not good enough for lets say a grade 3 band? No he would rather march on playing summit like the hoolit a fekin reel wi melodies!! Fine if your a grade 2 or grade 1 band wi players who can managed summit like that!! Bl@@dy hell isnt this why weve different grades for bands with different skill levels to play in?

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.. Re: Leaving hard parts of tunes out?

Post by Redneck on Tue 3 Feb - 22:08:35

Cheers John.
There are tunes that can be played by the grade3's of the more modern style, but as you said, pick the ones that can be played with 100% conviction.

Up to the line & Brig' Snow are classics's still in my eyes, it would be refreshing to hear a good grade3 band march on wi a nice melodic 12/8, 9/8 or the like, rather than a 200mph H/Pipe/Reel. ( can't talk really, we open up wi Trip to Herves, but IMO, we do a good job Embarassed Suspect )
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.. Re: Leaving hard parts of tunes out?

Post by Piping Connections on Tue 3 Feb - 23:48:04

well we are gonna play up in the minors with a 12/8 - does that make me weeks ahead oh mah time lol
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.. Re: Leaving hard parts of tunes out?

Post by Redneck on Tue 3 Feb - 23:51:51

Good on ya m8, naw, yer just on the same wave length lol
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.. Re: Leaving hard parts of tunes out?

Post by Gordy88 on Wed 4 Feb - 16:02:46

Good posts all round guys.

IMO, I think the 'Spirit' of the tune should be there, and a few wee changes are not a problem, case in point 'Bengullion'

A great 6/8 written I think in 1973 by the late Ron Fleming, good as written, but a lot of bands have made minor changes.

Minor changes, no probs, the problems start with the Major Surgery aspect.

Another problem creeps in with people who can't get a setting, so somebody in the band learns if off a tape, writes it out for the others, lots of changes creep in that way too.

Its all personal preference, Remember 'Pastiche'? It was a rip off of Clumsy lover if I remember right, Written by Mathieson perhaps?

Pick the right tunes, and you dont need to melt the chanter, Drumlough played Back of the Moon last season, easy and very effective, a crackin tune, and so musical. The Jiggenaut?? Musical porn Laughing

To be honest, there is the odd thing I would leave out, not much to be sure, but now and again, and on very cold days I play taps instead of birls.

Redneck, your point about bands playing material above them.

I was at the RSPBA branch meeting last Saturday, some useful points but a LOT of waffle, mostly with respect, from the G4 bands about the MAP system

Most were not happy with it, but the concensus was that 4b should be allowed to play marches in any time signiture, and 4a play 2/4's 6 parts of their own choosing, not from a specifed list as it now is.

One old guy gets up and says grade 4a bands should be allowed to play whatever they want, as he reckons his band should be allowed to play Highland wedding or Clan McRea, if they like. WTF???

Sure they can, but I wouldn't recommended it for competition use??

I'm not having a go, nor am I trying to belittle lower grade bands, but a wee bit of sense needs to be applied too. Grade 1 and 2 bands can butcher the top 2/4's, every bit as well as the next band.

I do have a bee in my bonnet about band sizes at the best of times, but its such an easy trap to fall into, and one major problem is that any band with less than 18/20 pipers in Grade 1 gets ignored in a major, how they play doesnt matter, the judges switch off. So P/Ms tend to want to carry 1 or 2, and to be honest, with 20 pipers you can get away with something you wouldnt in Grade 3,

Again, good posts and thought guys.

Thanks
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.. Re: Leaving hard parts of tunes out?

Post by scots wa hae on Wed 4 Feb - 18:45:19

Im going to go of on a slight tangent here!! Im all for good tunes played well and always picked for a better word for the weakest in the band!! Now Last night I was given a medley for a grade 3 band and I would say its quite traditional. But it's like randomly picked tunes which have been stapled and photo copied together, needless to say I aint going to go and see that particular band now!!
Their intro was a Hornpipe Caledonian piping club going into boys of the lough and herring in salt the air is dreams of old Pa fogarty floowed by dalnahasaig and bows to ballindalloch, paddy le blanc finnishing with macphails reel.

What Im trying to say is even though perhaps a traditional approach or less technical tunes may very well be the way forward for some bands there still needs to be level of "musical interpretation" when putting a madley together.

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.. Re: Leaving hard parts of tunes out?

Post by Redneck on Wed 4 Feb - 21:12:23

Quite right m8, having said that, there's a few gid tunes in that medley. Yet as you say the keys and construction of the tunes are all over the place.

Medleys are now becoming a work of art with breaks from various tunes turning into the time signature of the next in line, very astute and effective.
This IMO is where the lower grade bands can learn, not so much the musical content, but, more so the construction of the medley being assembled.

Good point too John.

@Gordy, cheers fer yer comments ref' the band m8. This years medley has been revamped with only 2 jigs remaining from the 2007-08 season.
Here again we have tried to construct a slightly more technically challenging medley with some good harmonic embellishments.
Will it work ?......well we'll have da wait 'n see, the main thing is the members are bustin' da get at it each night. So with that new found drive and the few other changes we are hoping fer a more lucrative return of silverware than last season. ( which wasn't too bad fer first year up )

Bet there was some crap talked at that meetin' m8, glad am not at 'em.
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.. Re: Leaving hard parts of tunes out?

Post by scots wa hae on Thu 5 Feb - 1:07:39

Ive been out tonight and seen and listened to the band with that medley, whilst as I said tonight at the practice there were better tunes which could have been used. However the PM is trying to keep the set as traditional as possible and wi this the 1st year in 3b he tried not to over complicate it. Now wi the addition of breaks and 2nds it seemd to lft it a notch or 2. I liked what I heard and saw from the other members that Ive decided to sign up!!

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.. Re: Leaving hard parts of tunes out?

Post by Redneck on Thu 5 Feb - 1:19:46

Nice 1 m8, gid luck 'n get stuck in there. See ya soon..........Ummmmm, beertent. big grin
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