May 12, 2011

Traditional Irish Music Sessions

Ever been to a pub and notice a few people with instruments sitting in a corner? Someone starts playing a tune and then a few others join in. There might be a few others with instruments ready but not playing. Some play fiddle, others flute or bodhran. Someone might even sing. People come and go. It's very informal.

This is an Irish music session where folks gather to play traditional Irish music. If you're not a musician (I'm not) you might sit by and listen, but this is not a performance, not in the traditional sense of the word. Irish music sessions give the musicians an opportunity to practice what they love, and it often gives less experienced musicians a chance to practice with others. Remember those folks I mentioned who sit out a tune? They are waiting for one they know. It's considered bad form to strum, drum, or whistle along if you don't know the piece.

If you're not familiar with an Irish music session, you might be tempted to think these just occur in Ireland, but you can likely find one in an Irish pub or restaurant near you, somewhere close to the bar where the musicians can get a pint or two.

Here are some sites to check out:
Irish Seisiun
The Irish Session by Stewart Hendrickson
Article from the Columbus Dispatch

I'd love to hear about your experience!

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