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Cello Lessons: “Atholl Highlander's Jig”

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[MUSIC]
Atholl Highlander's Jig
is a great jam tune.
And it's gonna give us an opportunity
to explore some new things.
It's a Scottish jig.
If you don't know what a jig is yet, it's
gonna be in a new time signature for us.
It's in the six eight.
Now, we've played tunes in four four.
We've played tunes in three four.
Six eight is a new one.
So it has six subdivisions
which are eighth notes.
That's where the six eight comes from.
And they're grouped in
two groups of three.
So, it sounds like this.
One, two, three, four, fix, six.
One, two, three, four, fix, six.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
Count with me, right now, please.
One, two, three, four, five six.
One, two, three, four, five six.
One, two, three, four, five six.
Now, even though it's in six eight,
the jig has a very specific
feel in the six eight.
And we are gonna kind of accent,
one, two, three, four, five, six.
One, two, three, four,
five, six, in this tune.
Sometimes, jigs will have a one,
two, three, four, five, six.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
One.
We're gonna lead to the backbeat
in this particular tune.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
Okay?
[SOUND] This tune is also in four
sections.
I don't think we've learned a tune,
with four sections yet.
But each of these sections has a lot of
repetition, so it won't be hard to learn.
Let's start with the A section.
[MUSIC]
That's the first phrase that we're gonna
repeat.
So, we're actually gonna start
right away with a Celtic ornament.
[SOUND] It's a hammer on, but
if you were Scottish, you might call it a.
[MUSIC]
Scottish musicians,
they vocalize a lot of their music.
And for this, they would say
[MUSIC]
so why don't you say that with me.
[MUSIC]
So we have a.
[MUSIC]
We basically just have the hammer on,
and then an A major arpeggio,
[MUSIC]
down.
[MUSIC]
We're gonna play that, three times.
Lets sing it once.
And we wanna sing it with
some Scottish inflection.
[MUSIC]
Good.
Let's play those three phrases.
One, two, three, ready, go.
[MUSIC]
Good.
The fourth phrase at the first ending,
is gonna go like this.
[MUSIC]
Just a little scale up and
down, starting on B.
But because we're in
our A major extension,
we're playing it with second finger.
[MUSIC]
So if that's after all the hadums
it sounds like this.
Why don't you sing with me the first time,
and then I'll repeat it right away without
stopping, and
you can play with me in the second time.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
[MUSIC]
Ending.
[MUSIC]
Yes.
[MUSIC]
Let's do it together.
I stopped.
Sorry, I told you, I wasn't gonna stop.
Let's do it together.
Now on the cello with one,
two, three, four, five, six.
[MUSIC]
Good.
The second half of the A section is
gonna have the same three calls.
[MUSIC]
Actually is gonna have two calls.
We just have two calls,
cuz we have a longer ending, and
that longer ending sounds like this.
[MUSIC]
We've got a little fancy bowing in there.
Let's break it down.
[MUSIC]
Down, up, down.
[MUSIC]
That little bow slur is gonna help us lead
into the fourth eighth note.
One, two, three, four.
[MUSIC]
Good.
Then the next couple of notes.
[MUSIC]
Just three notes down to C sharp.
[MUSIC]
Let's play that together.
Ready, and.
[MUSIC]
So now that we've added these three
[MUSIC]
phrases, we have two more notes to add.
[MUSIC]
D, B, A.
And that's actually
gonna have another slur.
[MUSIC]
Down, up.
We're gonna end up.
All of these together,
let me play it so you can hear it.
[MUSIC]
Let's sing that together.
[MUSIC]
Good.
Actually this ending is really important.
It's gonna end every single
section in this tune.
So we could give it words like,
[MUSIC]
and here, we have the same ending again.
[MUSIC]
And here, we have the same ending again.
That's gonna keep happening.
Let's put it together with
two hadums before it.
I'll play it first, you can sing along,
and then we'll try it again together.
[MUSIC]
And here,
we have the same ending again.
Let's try it together.
Three and.
[MUSIC]
And here,
we have the same ending again.
Good.
Let's really make sure we
get those bowings though.
That's the key part of the feel,
for that ending.
[MUSIC]
Down, up, down.
[MUSIC]
Up, down, up.
Those slurs over the beat
are what give it a lilt, and
that's really important for the jig.
Let me play the whole A section.
I want you to sing along with the hadums
and even the words at the end.
[MUSIC]
And here, we have the same ending again.
And then, we'll play it through
together after you sing it.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
[MUSIC]
And here,
we have the same
ending again.
Let's try it together, on the cello.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
[MUSIC]
And here,
we have the same ending again.
Good.
So that A section happens twice.
Each section will happen twice.
A, A, B, B, C, C, and D,
D which is really easy to remember
because it spells Ba, Ba, Ca, Ca, Da, Da.
Every section will happen twice.
Let's move to the B section.
The B section is full of arpeggios.
I'm giving you a heads up.
[MUSIC]
And here,
we have the same ending again.
So really we have two A arpeggios.
[MUSIC]
And
then we have two D
arpeggios starting from A.
[MUSIC]
Let's just play those two bars.
[SOUND] Just the A arpeggio first.
Ready and.
[MUSIC]
Those are all separate bows.
And now the D arpeggio, one,
[SOUND] O, [SOUND] two.
[SOUND] You could actually
play that F sharp with two.
So that we stay in our
extension hand shape.
[MUSIC]
This is one of the many examples of why
A major is kind of annoying on the cello.
Because normally we could play that note
with third finger, but we have to stretch,
so we keep our extension.
[SOUND] Let's put these two bars together.
Two A arpeggios and two D arpeggios.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
[MUSIC]
Good.
Now we'll have one more A arpeggio.
[MUSIC]
Before we have a run that sounds familiar.
[MUSIC]
We had that in the A section.
So the first half of the B section,
A arpeggios, D arpeggios,
A arpeggios, and then our little B
[MUSIC]
riff that goes right down.
Okay?
I'll play it for you,
I want you to sing along,
then we'll play it together.
Ready, and.
[MUSIC]
B riff that goes right down.
Let's try it together.
Ready, and.
[MUSIC]
B riff that goes right down.
Okay.
Now the second half of the B
section is very similar, but
we have the other ending, that,
[MUSIC]
and here, we have the same ending again.
That's gonna happen after just the A and
the D arpeggios.
Let's hear that.
[MUSIC]
Let's sing that.
Ready, and.
[MUSIC]
And we,
[MUSIC]
and here, we have the same ending again.
Okay.
[MUSIC]
I think we can play the whole B section
now, cuz there's not
much that's actually new.
Okay?
I'll play the whole B section twice.
You can sing along the first time, and
definitely play along the second time.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
[MUSIC]
B riff that goes right down.
[MUSIC]
And here, we have the same ending again.
[MUSIC]
B riff that goes right down.
[MUSIC]
And here, we have the same ending again.
Good.
[SOUND] Let's play the whole A section and
B section, both of which repeats.
One, two, three, four, fix, six.
One, two, three, ready, set, go.
[MUSIC]
And here, we have
the same ending again, repeat.
[MUSIC]
B section.
[MUSIC]
B riff that goes right down.
[MUSIC]
And here, we have the same ending again.
Repeat.
[MUSIC]
Good.
[MUSIC]
[MUSIC]
Let's move on to the C and
the D sections.
The C section is possibly my favorite.
And we're gonna get to learn
a new Celtic ornament.
This is how it sounds.
[MUSIC]
B riff that goes right down.
[MUSIC]
And here we have the same ending again.
So the only new part is the first bar.
[MUSIC]
That gets repeated.
So we have a big down bow.
[MUSIC]
And that is the new ornament.
That's called a flick.
[MUSIC]
The flick is hard to do right sometimes,
because it seems like it's kind of
like a trill, like I'm putting down
the fourth finger, but actually,
I'm flattening my fourth finger,
which is not something I would
normally tell you to do.
So that instead of playing a note, it's
merely like momentarily muting the string.
Try holding down your first finger,
and just kind of slapping the D string
with sort of the flat part
of your fourth finger.
If I bow it, we'll hear
the re-articulation of the note.
[MUSIC]
Try a couple of those.
[MUSIC]
A lot of Celtic ornaments
come from the bag pipe.
Now, a bag pipe, they're just blowing,
and squeezing air the whole time.
So, if a bag pipe player,
when they're playing in the flute part,
the recorder part.
If they want to re-articulate a note,
all they can do is do exactly what
we're doing, they kind of touch a note
above a note, so it goes like [SOUND].
And so fiddle players who play Scottish
and Irish music have adapted that
technique, and that's why it has
a very unique Celtic flavor to it.
[MUSIC]
It's actually an amazing technique,
that I wish I had discovered earlier,
to be able to re-articulate a note without
having to change the bow direction.
[MUSIC]
So
we're actually gonna do
this flick on a big up bow.
[MUSIC]
Let's try that.
Ready, and down, up, and
because the flick is leading
into the strong beat,
one, two, three, four,
we're gonna actually push with the bow,
a little bit.
A little bit of a swell.
[MUSIC]
So if I had left out the flick,
it would sound like this.
[MUSIC]
You hear that swell?
That's just like the push that we learned
in Cluck Old Hen from old time music.
But we're combining it with the flick.
[MUSIC]
Let's do the whole bar now.
[MUSIC]
We go all the way down to the C sharp.
[MUSIC]
Let's try that three times in a row, and
then we'll have the B riff
that goes right down.
Then we play it two more times before, and
here we have the same ending again, okay?
This is the C section, whole time through.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
[MUSIC]
Flicks, flicks, flicks,
B riff that goes right down.
Flick.
Flick.
And here we have the same ending again.
[MUSIC]
Flick.
Flick.
Flick.
[MUSIC]
Flick.
Flick.
[MUSIC]
And here we have the ending again.
Good, that's the C section.
Let's learn the D section,
and then we'll be done.
The D section has a pattern
that gets sequenced of thirds.
[MUSIC]
So we have the C sharp and
the A, that's a third,
a major third.
[MUSIC]
We just alternate between
those notes twice.
Let's try that together.
Ready, and.
Four, one, four, four, one, four.
The next bar takes that
pattern up a scale degree.
O, two, O, O, two, O.
Let's try that again.
[MUSIC]
Then we go back to the A and C sharp.
[MUSIC]
And then we have a new chord,
a G chord, and so
we're gonna have B, G, B, B, G, B.
It's second finger and open G.
Let me put these together.
They start from A, then B, then A, then G.
Say that with me.
A, then B, then A, then G.
It sounds like this.
Sing along.
[MUSIC]
And then we have a little run
there to get us back to the repeat.
Up.
[MUSIC]
Just a three note scale up to D.
Let's play those four bars together.
Ready and.
[MUSIC]
Up.
Good.
And then the second half of this section.
[MUSIC]
Has those two.
[MUSIC]
And here we have the same ending again.
Then we play the whole D section.
I really want you to sing
along the first time,
and then we'll play it
together the second time.
Starting on C sharp and A.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
[MUSIC]
Up.
[MUSIC]
And here we have the same ending again.
Join me, three, and.
[MUSIC]
Up.
[MUSIC]
And here we have the same ending again.
Let's shake out our left hand.
We've been holding this big extension for
awhile now.
We want to make sure we stay loose.
One, actually one way that I like to
stay loose is I do kind of a rotational
twisting and just kinda let my
thumb flop back and forth and
feel the weight of my thumb that way.
Before we leave the D Section,
I want us to talk about the feel
of this jig one more time.
At the beginning the lesson we were
counting one, two, three, four, five, six.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
And we wanna keep that feel,
particularly in this D section, okay?
So, let's count together.
I want you to just count that feel and
I'll play over you so you really hear it.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
[MUSIC]
One, two, three, four, five, six.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
Okay.
Let's try and play it.
And so we're really leaning in,
the three four.
[MUSIC]
It's on a down up in this section.
[MUSIC]
Down up, down up.
[MUSIC]
Down up.
[MUSIC]
Down up.
[MUSIC]
Down up.
Okay, let's play the whole thing,
the whole D section together.
One, two, three, four, five six.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
[MUSIC]
Very
good.
Let's play through the whole tune, A,
A, B, B, C, C and D, D, the whole form.
Really thinking about the feel.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
And actually, even in the A section,
that's gonna give us an opportunity to
kind of grow through those long notes.
[MUSIC]
We kind of want to
crescendo through the [NOISE].
That'll help us lead to
beat four in the A section.
Let's do the whole thing, a little
slower than the backing track will be,
and we'll focus on the feel.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
One, two, three, four, five six.
[MUSIC]
C
section.
[MUSIC]
Flick, flick, flick.
[MUSIC]
Last
time.
[MUSIC]
Three, four.
[MUSIC]
Three, four.
[MUSIC]
And here we have
the same ending again.
Very nice.
I'm really looking forward to hearing
you play Atholl Highlander's Jig.
[MUSIC]