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Ashokan Farewell – Jay Ungar – Beautiful Melody –…

Yesterday I accidentally found a video with the tune Ashokan Farewell. I had previously heard this melody, but I have never really dealt with it. But now I want to show this melody to our fiddle player, and  I have searched for more videos with this tune.

When you hear Ashokan Farewell you might think that this is a traditional Irish tune, but that is not the case.

Jay Ungar und Molly Mason

Ashokan Farewell was composed by Jay Ungar in 1982. Jay Ungar and his Wife Molly Mason are playing american roots music since the late 1970s and have organized fiddle and dance camps. Ashokan Fawell was used in a TV Series about the American Civil War and is a tune that is obviously known by many Americans. The music for this TV series has even won a Grammy award, and Ashokan Farewell was nominated for an Emmy.
This information and more can be found on the homepage of Jay Ungar and Molly Mason jayandmolly.com : Ashokan Farewell FAQ

Sheet music of this tune can be found at thesession.org: Ashokan Farewell – the session

Now let’s start with the videos. As this blog is mainly about plucked instruments, I will start with a version played on the guitar:

Ashokan Farewell – guitar

Fiddle tune by Jay Unger that was featured in the Ken Burns documentary about the American Civil War. I found this arrangement for guitar on the internet credited to Denny Straussfogel. Nice work, Denny.

Ashokan Farewell – Slide Guitar

von www.martingross.com

Ashokan Farewell – The Richardsons

An interesting version with four violins played by the Richardsons – the youngest of them is just 12 years old:

Playlist Ashokan Farewell

A playlist with those and many more videos of Ashokan Farewell (including also some versions played on the mandolin). The first video of this playlist is a version by Jay Ungar, where he tells about how he invented this beautiful melody after a summer fiddle camp in Ashokan:


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Ashokan Farewell . Beautiful Dreamer (Songs Of Stephen Foster)

– Jay Ungar, Molly Mason, Thomas Hampson, David Alpher

stringed instruments

Astor Piazzolla – Histoire du Tango – Liuqin (Chinese…

The music composed by Astor Piazzolla is famous around the world, especially the three pieces from Histoire du tango are played very often. And very often those pieces are played with mandolin and guitar.

In Taiwan YaHui Chen und YunChang Dong have played tose three pieces in a concert with chines 4-stringed mandolin liuqin and guitar, the three videos of this performance can be found at youtube.

I have presented the Chinese mandolin liuqin in my German blog, I will translate this article also the English – give me some time. However you can look at the embedded videos from the following thread:

Liuquin – die chinesische Mandoline

Enjoy the Histoire du tango in this unusual version!

Bordel 1900 (Astor Piazzolla) – YH Chen & Dong

liuqin (Chinese Mandolin) : YaHui Chen

Guitar : YunChang Dong

Cafe 1930 -(Astor Piazzolla) YH Chen & Dong

Nightclub 1960-(Astor Piazzolla) YH Chen & Dong

 


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Piazzola: Complete Music For Flute And Guitar; Hugo German Gaido

mandolin duo

Mike Marshall and Chris Thile – The Woodsongs Radio…

Mike Marshall

Mike Marshall is one of the best mandolin players in the USA today. For more than 30 years Mike has played everything possible on the mandolin, and also on the mandocello – bluegrass, dawg, jazz, classical and brazilian choro.

In the early 80s he played together with the David Grisman Quintet. For the leading mandolin journal of that time – the Mandolin World News – he wrote the beginners page.

With the Modern Mandolin Quartet he played classical music from the nutcracker suite to Gershwin’s West Side Story.

During the last years he has learned everything about the brazilian choro and has invited the leading choro players like Hamilton de Holanda and Dudu Maia to the United States.

With this broad background it is no surprisde to find Mike Marshall now regularly together in duo concerts with German mandolin professor Caterina Lichtenberg teaching at the music university Köln/Wuppertal

Mike was a teacher at the first European Mandolin Acadamy held in Trossingen this year, together with Don Stiernberg, Caterina Lichtenberg and Mirko Schrader.

Interview with Mike Marshall with some interesting informations: digitalinterviews

Chris Thile

Chris Thile was very successful with the Nickel Creek. He plays is a fantastic mandolin player and is – like Mike Marshall – very versatile. He is certainly an idol for many young mandolin players in the USA and around the world. He plays the mandolin very creatively and has developed his own style and sound.

Woodsongs

Every week in an old theater in Lexington, Kentucky, there is a one hour concert organized by Michael Jonathan – the Woodsong’s Radio Hour. Those concerts are available for download as audio or video files – a huge archive of excellent music.

Mike Marshall and Chris Thile played concert No. 287 – a concert that you should have seen and heard. Both are playing excellent. The program includes classical pieces like the Goldberg variations by J. S. Bach, standards like the Fishermans Hornpipe and many compositions by Mike Marshall and Chris Thile. The Radio Hours is just one hour, but after a short break it was continued with an after hour, a long program with many interesting pieces.

In the beginning of the concert Mike and Chris each played one solo piece. Mike began with Odeon by Ernesto Nazareth, the first piece in the playlist below.

To download the complete video or audio go to: Woodsongs Archive

If you do not want to download the complete video you can also find most of the pieces as youtube videos. However – the complete video contains also the interviews and the talk between the pieces which is also very interesting, and you learn a lot about Mike and Chris if you watch it.

I have collected the youtube videos in my following playlist:

Additional information

Website Mike Marshall: http://www.mikemarshall.net/

Website Chris Thile: http://www.punchbrothers.com/

Blog about Mike Marshall (German) / Interview: http://www.gitarrengurte.de/blog/?p=399


CD Tip (amazon partnerlink)

Live Duets – Chris Thile and Mike Marshall

folk

Sedi Donka ❀ 7 + 7 + 11 =…

Mike Marshall and Chris Thile played one piece during their woodsongs duo concert named Sedi Donka. This is a Bulgarian folk dance tune in 25/8, divided in 7 + 7 + 11 eights.

Before they played the tune Chris and Mike demonstrated this rhythm to the public.

The rhythm goes like this:

ti – ke – ti, tam, tam
ti – ke – ti, tam, tam
ti – ke, ti – ke
ti – ke – ti, tam, tam

Today I have searched again for this tune and I found the sheet music as an ABC file, but also as a pdf. The best place I found this is the following (you can use see and hear to see the music and hear it):

http://www.goess.org/mason/other-abc/

Much more interesting is it to view the dance with the music, and the steps made by the dancers:

Sedi Donka Bulgarian Folk Dance Dansuri Populare Bulgaria

A great version of Sedi Donka with Clarinet:

Sedi Donka Bulgarian Music Woytek Mrozek – clarinet, conductor, composer

Now the version by Mike Marshall and Chris Thile:

Sedi Donka – Mandolin Duet – Mike Marshall & Chris Thile

It is not so difficult to play – go and try it!


CD tip (Amazon partnerlink):

Live Duets Mike Marshall and Chris Thile