Irish Traditional Music

I took an interest in Irish traditional music when I saw the the first of the Transatlantic Sessions TV series back in the late 90s. I enjoyed the music but it wasn't until January 2008 that I began playing. My wife gifted me 6 lessons with local fiddler extrodinaire Matt Tarling and from then on I was hooked.

As I learned fiddle I became aware that my mandolin, hanging on my wall, was tuned the same and mid-2008 I took up mandolin playing too.

Early 2009, a friend gave me an old piano accordion and so I took that up too.

Not content with 3 instruments, I took my wishy washy rock guitar skills, retuned my guitar to DADGAD and have also been learning accompaniment.

When I gave away my cheap bodhrán, I took the opportunity to buy a newer, better one from the Belgarth company in the Orkneys, and I now also play percussive backup.

In 2014 I bought myself a tenor banjo, and have been practising in attaining the right hand relaxation technique required for playing the thing at any decent speed required for Irish trad!

I play in the bands Leafling, 8-sharp, and dep in a number of other bands including Murphy's Lore, Celtic Confusion, Wessex Ceilidh Band and Silverback.

The best part of the Irish traditional music scene is the sessions, where a bunch of random people turn up at a pub and play music. It means everyone has to learn lots of tunes by heart and be proficient at their instrument, otherwise it's hard to join in. It's a great way to get motivation for learning. The video below shows me and a friend I met at a session playing some tunes.

Check out some of my Irish traditional-style compositions on my compositions page.

I am also trying (rather unsuccessfully) to make videos of all the tunes and songs I know. Check out my music videos page.