Newcastle, old English dance tune (variant)

  1. JL277z
    Discovered this fun tune a while back, finally got around to trying to do something with it. This is my own three-part arrangement.

    (or direct link)

    When I have time, I might post the preliminary/tentative written arrangement that I devised last month, from which this recording evolved... my recording is not exactly the way the tune is 'supposed' to be played I'm sure!
  2. Michael Pastucha
    Michael Pastucha
    Lots of fun to listen to... Thanks!
  3. Mike001
    I really like that and excellent job on the recording too. Just goes to show that there's plenty of great tunes out there that don't involve playing at break neck speeds or getting out of first position. There may be hope for me yet
  4. JL277z
    Michael and Mike001, thanks!

    Yes I agree about speed, and first-position too.

    I made a scrolling play-along mandolin-tab video (also has standard notation), there's more info at 2nd post in a page at classical forum (hope I did that link right), so anyway for convenience here's that video, it's MuseScore 2 MIDI-only (purely computer-generated) playback of written score:

    (or direct link)

    It's normal speed but I will make a slower-speed version when I have time next week. That will sound a lot better than if one were to use YouTube's built-in slower-downerer which doesn't sound very good on non-HD videos. So it's better when I make a separate recording where I set MuseScore to simply play slower, and then I make a whole new video from that. That way there's no sound-quality loss resulting from slowing down an existing video.

    I also made a printable pdf of the tab and sheetmusic, can't post pdf's here at Song-a-Week but you can nab it from the aforementioned classical forum link. That arrangement is the same as the one in my MuseScore video, and I found it helpful as a starting point in learning the tune.

    Newcastle is a blast to play but it does have some tricky passages with that string-hopping (pick) thing to get to some of the notes. I have no idea whether my right-hand/pick technique is good or bad, I don't even consciously think about it, it just 'is'... but it seems different than other tunes looking at it on the video... if I were to start thinking about it I'd just confuse myself even more.
  5. Robert Balch
    Robert Balch
    This is one of my favorite tunes. It never seems to get old.
    The pictures are from the NASA site. They post a new one each day and some are truely incredible.

  6. Frithjof
    Beautiful arrangement.
  7. crisscross
    Very nice mandolin playing and backup!
  8. Robert Balch
    Robert Balch
    Thanks everyone. This is a very supportive place to share music.
  9. Gelsenbury
    What a treat! The arrangement is just as beautiful and evocative as those stunning images. I hope I correctly identified a hammered dulcimer as one of the instruments there, which worked really well. My mind was adding flute and concertina just to continue to celebrate this great tune.
  10. JL277z
    Robert, very nice!
  11. Robert Balch
    Robert Balch
    Gelsenbury - You are right, that is a hammered dulcimer. I started that just before I retired two years ago. It has been a lot of fun. My skills, however, need a lot of polishing.
  12. Gelsenbury
    Here is the proof that things on my to-do list do indeed get done ... eventually.

    This version of Newcastle from Playford is less strident than most, inspired instead by Robert Balch's slower and straighter version, the meditative quality of which I really enjoyed. It's a beautiful tune either way. The Playford collection is a real treasure trove.

    The instruments are my Fylde Touchstone Walnut mandolin, Blue Moon octave mandola, bowed psaltery, mini bouzouki, and soprano recorder. Sorry about the poor lighting in my conservatory.
  13. Michael Romkey
    Michael Romkey
    I've not heard this tune before. It's beautiful. Nice versions all.
  14. Martin Jonas
    Martin Jonas
    Lovely, Dennis -- really mellow feeling! I was convinced I had recorded this tune in the past, but apparently not. Need to have a go!

  15. Simon DS
    Simon DS
    Great performances all, and very nice Dennis, great atmosphere with the lighting to match too.
    It’s funny because this is a tune I just can’t get right, I tried it back in 2019 when I bought my octave but didn’t yet have a good practice/learning technique sorted out.
  16. Christian DP
    Christian DP
    A nice collection of instruments you have Dennis. All well played.
  17. John Kelly
    John Kelly
    A multi-layered recording, Dennis. You get quite a chiming sound out of this and it creates an interesting sound.
  18. Frithjof
    Great tone on mandolin and octave, Dennis. But what I like most is the joy of playing you celebrate with each of your videos.
  19. JL277z
    Gelsenbury, sounds good!
  20. Martin Jonas
    Martin Jonas
    I have finally got around to recording "Newcastle", as a set with another Playford dance, "Never Love Thee More".

    Band arrangements for both tunes by the Cafe's David M. Brown, from his wonderful collection for Lark In The Morning, available free online:

    Mid-Missouri M-0W mandolin (x2)
    Vintage Viaten tenor guitar
    Suzuki MC-815 mandocello

    Newcastle starts at 1:00 in the video, played a bit more uptempo than Robert and Dennis.

    I'm also trying out a new webcam, and a new room to record in.

  21. Gelsenbury
    This is the more usual tempo, Martin. But I just loved Robert's slower version, so I tried to emulate that. The tune sounds good at both speeds.

    Thank you all for the nice words about my recording. I'm glad to have stirred all the right sentiments.
  22. John Kelly
    John Kelly
    Good pairing, Martin. Your new webcam and change of location are working well too! Thanks for posting the link to the tunes and arrangements.
  23. Christian DP
    Christian DP
    The new webcam and the new room seem to inspire you Martin. Nice Playford set, played wonderfully!
  24. Martin Jonas
    Martin Jonas
    Thanks, Dennis, John and Christian. The tunes are old favourites, and David's arrangements are very enjoyable. He has also just sent me a batch of further Playford/ECD arrangements, so I have a few more to play with.

  25. Michael Romkey
    Michael Romkey
    Well done and thanks much for the link.
  26. Ginny Aitchison
    Ginny Aitchison
    I can't get used to Martin's new look. It is doing nice things musically but for how many years and different paintings and slight seating variations, have we seen Martin in the attic. It's messing with the feng shui of my brain matter. It's Ok, Martin. I will learn to adapt.
  27. Simon DS
    Simon DS
    Very atmospheric playing in the new recording studio Martin and as always you have an authentic tone there.
  28. Martin Jonas
    Martin Jonas
    Thanks, Michael, Ginny and Simon.

    Ginny: There was a 10-year period from 2010 to 2020 where I didn't record any videos at all, just audio with slide shows, so it's not all that many years in the same room. John prompted me to leave my den, and as my music room doubles as home office during the week, it's not a bad thing to play somewhere else on the weekends for a change in scenery.

  29. JL277z
    Nicely played, Martin!
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