Tuesday, 3 April 2012

You can't can teach an old dog

new tricks.

I bought myself a new Generation
penny whistle from the local music shop on the way home from the Irish Music Course. My old one (lost long ago) was a Clarke's ( I vaguely recall that it was referred to as a flageolet. ) in the key of 'C', so all the fingering I'd learned was based on C major.

Traditional Irish music is often in D major (2 sharps), A (3 sharps ) or G (1 sharp). Playing a C whistle is tricky in these keys.

Learning to play a 'D' penny whistle should be easy when the tunes are in D major - if said tunes are taught by ear. Sight reading is another matter. My fingers automatically assume the 'C' whistle (like a descant recorder without the rear hole) postions.

I've started to learn to play the new whistle by 'sight reading' tunes in D that I already know. So far, it's working. Once I find the start note, I can find my way through the tune, repeating it until my fingers are familiar with the positions.

This is fun.