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Scarse o tatties at pace
#1
Hi,

I’m learning a set comprising Scarse O Tatties into The Athole Highlanders but I’m really struggling to get my speed up while keeping the rythme. I’m trying a metronome on my phone. Anyone have any advice on practice exercises I could do to help me get my speed up? 

I’d love to get it to this speed https://youtu.be/Kw1l6mdZ9-E

Many thanks

Alice
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#2
(27-05-2021, 07:54 AM)aliceb Wrote: Hi,

I’m learning a set comprising Scarse O Tatties into The Athole Highlanders but I’m really struggling to get my speed up while keeping the rythme. I’m trying a metronome on my phone. Anyone have any advice on practice exercises I could do to help me get my speed up? 

I’d love to get it to this speed https://youtu.be/Kw1l6mdZ9-E

Many thanks

Alice

Hi Alice.  Set the metronome at a speed that you are comfortable with (or even a bit slower) and then work on individual bars or phrases of the tune, repeating them till you can play them easily and accurately.  If you are working from notation, try to reach a point where you can confidently play the tune without looking at the notation.  When you have a bar learned, then add the next, then the next, till you have the whole of the A part, then the B part (and C or D parts if you are working on a tune like a 4-part pipe tune).

Increase your metronome tempo gradually over a period of time.  This will depend on your own rate of progress, but don't get too fast too soon.

Try to relax when you are picking the notes - do not grip the pick too tightly as this will create tension and affect your fluency, and keep the fingers of your left hand relaxed too and do not press down on the notes more than you need to.  Many of us are inclined to grip the neck too tightly and to press the notes too much against the frets, causing ourselves needless strain and affecting our playing fluency.

Think about your pick direction - you will be using a sequence of up and down strokes and there may be phrases where it will be easier to alter the UDUDUD pattern used in reels, or the DUD DUD pattern beloved of folk playing Irish jigs.  I have never quite come to terms with the DUD DUD picking pattern in my own jig playing, but all those who use it swear by it.

Hope this is of some help to you.
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#3
John

Some great advise It should be the first page of the mandolin player's bible. I am not great using the metronome but I try to get a mp3 of the tune I am learning played at a speed that I feel I would be comfortable with (often from that John Kelly's Youtube) and when I get up to speed I play along with it. It tends to find it also help you to relax . with pick direction being left handed I tend to go in reverse but Nigel always says whatever your comfortable with and his tip of DunDee (UD), AbErDeen (UDU) and EdInBuRgh (UDUD).

for me what ever you do "Just enjoy it", is all that matters.
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#4
Thanks both. Have almost memorised it so will focus on metronome work and not tensing. Not heard the Dundee/Aberdeen/ Edinburgh trick - like it!
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