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 Traditional Music >> The Scottish Whistle >> Tutorials >> Tutorial 14.1

The Scottish Whistle

Decoration 1

Decoration 2

Si Beag Si Mhor



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Whistle Tutorial - Lesson 14.1




It's always better to play a tune simply and clearly, no frills, than to fill it with decorations which detract from the basic tune. Decorations can add to the sound of a tune, but you should only be thinking of decorations when you know a tune so well that you can concentrate on embellishing it. Start off slowly - don't oversweeten the cake.

Now we're going to look at some decorations that can be used on the whistle, and then apply them to a tune (we'll use the tune we learned last time, Si Beag Si Mhor).

Here we're talking about the sliding of one note into another. On the whistle this is done simply by starting off with the note below and sliding your finger off the hole to give a smooth transition to the note above. Start off on the high E note (five fingers down) and slide your middle finger smoothly off the hole so that you end up by playing the F note.

The Cut
This very simple decoration involves adding another note before the proper note you're about to play. Although this becomes a matter of feeling and instinct, you can start off by learning a system. The D, E, F, and G notes will be preceded by the A note; the A and B notes will be preceded by the C note. The C note isn't cut. [MIDI file]
ex14-1.gif - 4Kb

You do not have to remove all your finger to make this decoration; just twitching your finger off the A note will produce the desired effect.


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