One morning not long ago I woke up with a head ache. Maybe it was from staring at those little dots of music at orchestra rehearsal. Or peering at the little screen on my lap top.
I took some ibuprofen, (my drug of choice), and made coffee. As I waited for the coffee to brew I was trying to remember a Liz Carroll tune. There was something about it that haunted me. But, I wasn’t remembering exactly how the tune went or what album it was on.
As I continued trying to focus through my achy head and morning bleariness, suddenly a new tune popped into my head. I’m saying it was an instant download from the Grassapelli influence. It was just there.
I got out my fiddle and Edirol. By that time the coffee was ready, so I poured a cup. By the time I had played through the tune two times and recorded it, my headache was gone. Hence. Quick Fix.
This is more of a devotional song at Christmas than a Christmas Carol. Usually it’s sung by a singer with real chops.
I got a request for this one by email. I hope I can find the message in my piles of messages so I can reply. This tune is not in my new ebook, 25 Christmas Carols in Tab. More about that is posted on the Fiddle Violin blog.
The song takes two pages. As a pdf file it’s just one file: O Holy Night pdf. Here are the images:
This has plenty of violin techniques. If you know the song, you can probably decipher the symbols. It’s a satisfying song to play. I hope you enjoy it.
Indian Point is a jig written by Rick Mohr. It has become a popular session tune. Mr. Mohr has used a musical device in this tune that is very effective. Maybe he did not set out to do this composer’s trick, but it is a neat one.
The contour of the melody and chord progression in the A part is speeded up to twice as fast in the B part. That doesn’t mean that notes go faster. It’s the change of chords, and the arc of melody that moves faster. I hope that makes sense.
I find this jig absolutely magnetic. I love to play it.
In the first chart you find the basic tune in fiddle tab as it is published elsewhere in music notation. The second chart has some ornaments I like to use when I play the tune. Look for the pdf file for printing and the mp3 file for listening. They are below each graphic image.
The Amazing Grace fiddle notes are comments I make here, not musical notation. Fiddle notes might be tablature, but not musical notation targeted for fiddle.
Dale Morris had a very interesting approach to Amazing Grace. He talked about this when I attended the Texarkana Fiddle Camp way back when. (It was the first year of the Mark O’Connor Camp, whenever that was. I attended both.)
He said that he liked to slur notes together if they represented one word. The first word in the song is ‘amazing’. It is given one note for each syllable. Usually you hear this played with three bows. And that’s the way I’ve published the tune.
His reasoning is good and musical. If you are a beginner, though, it’s a little awkward to get the three notes together in one bow. Since I give this tune to beginners, I make it easier and more conventional.
If you are an intermediate or advanced player, you can stretch this first part out in one bow. In fact, you may choose to do a juicy shift to third position on the third note.
I’m showing the three ways of handling this beginning of the tune in the tabs below. Further along is a link to an mp3 file demonstrating the sound.
You will see an ornamented version of the song in the first fiddle tab chart. Even beginners are encouraged to push into new territory.
Now here is a fragment to show the beginning with the slur covering the first three notes.
And finally, moving into third position for during first three notes.