BlogJacob deGroot-Maggetti

2021 Reading Week New Fiddle Tunes Project

This coming week is Reading Week at McGill University. Inspired by Oliver Schroer, whose music I’ve been spending a bunch of time listening to and thinking about lately, I’ve set a goal for myself to compose a new fiddle tune every day (9 in total, including both weekends). Over the course of the week, I’ll update this page with sheet music and sound clips for each of the tunes I write. And at the end of the week, I’ll take my favourite and record it as my weekly multitracked video.

If you’re struck by any of these tunes, are inspired to write some of your own, have suggestions for names, or anything really, don’t hesitate to get in touch – I’m excited to hear anything you have to say or play!

Recordings

UPDATE: I've made full recordings of several of these tunes:

Sunday March 7

March 7th Slide
Sheet Music and Comments
Sheet music for March 7th Slide.

Here's a simple slide that took about 90 seconds to write. I generally take it as a good sign when a tune almost writes itself like this one did, but I'm always a little worried that it's actually an existing tune from a forgotten source....

Saturday March 6

March 6th Polka
Sheet Music and Comments
Sheet music for March 6th Polka.

Another polka that practically wrote itself.

Friday March 5

March 5th Waltz
Sheet Music and Comments
Sheet music for March 5th Waltz.

A rather sappy waltz.

Thursday March 4 – "The Aspen Tree"

March 4th Polka
Sheet Music and Comments
Sheet music for March 4th Polka.

The final B section sounds crooked, but it isn't.

UPDATE: I've made a proper recording of this tune, which I decided to call The Aspen Tree!

Wednesday March 3

March 3rd Jig
Sheet Music and Comments
Sheet music for March 3nd Jig.

This tune really only has one section – it's A, then A'. The key change was inspired by Michel Roy's tune, La chèvre et le chou.

Tuesday March 2 – "The Silver Sphere"

March 2nd Reel
Sheet Music and Comments
Sheet music for March 2nd Reel.

Here's a common Irish jig in E minor, except it's a reel in D mixolydian. I'd be curious to hear whether the original springs to mind for people familiar with the repertoire, or whether I've distorted it enough to call it a new tune.

UPDATE: I've made a proper recording of this tune, which I decided to call The Silver Sphere!

Monday March 1

March 1st
Sheet Music and Comments
Sheet music for March 1st.

This tune is in 7/8, but it switches between groupings of 3+2+2 and 2+2+3.

Sunday February 28

February 28th Reel
Sheet Music and Comments
Sheet music for the February 28th Reel.

I set out to write a tune with an 11-measure A-section and a 13-measure B-section. I succeeded, approximately.

Saturday February 27

February 27th Jig
Sheet Music and Comments
Sheet music for the February 27th Jig.

Here's the first tune. I like how the A section spans such a wide range. The B section sounds a bit plain.

Posted: February 27, 2021. Last updated: Apr 15, 2021.