Here are my three favourite fiddle tunes at this time, in reverse order:
3. Le Two-Step D’armand
Le Two-Step D’armand is a fun and happy tune. It is always a crowd pleaser with the many licks that can be added in various places. It was originally written by Graham Townsend, a fantastic Ottawa Valley fiddler. Here is Kelli Trottier playing Townsend’s classic as the second song in her set – a 2012 performance from Nova Scotia.
2. The Carignan Clog
I first discovered this tune when listening to Natalie MacMaster’s CD, Blueprint. I have always loved the gypsy feel to the tune that was originally composed by Scott Skinner. Natalie’s recording is actually two, very different tunes that are put together into a neat set (entitled Devil and the Dirk). Here is Natalie’s recording: the clog is the first song played in Devil and the Dirk.
1. Willow Springs
This is a tune I learned yesterday and just love. It is a very lively, old time fiddle sounding tune that ventures into 4th and 5th positions. The version of Willow Springs I learned was transposed by Calvin Vollrath, and I can tell the embellishments he has added to the music! (The photo is of me with Calvin this past summer at the Leahy Music Camp.) It is a showcase tune and is played by fiddlers in all different types of music. I do not only rank it number one because it is new to me, but also because it is both challenging and fun to play. Here are a few songs performed by the amazing Calvin Vollrath, including Willow Spring beginning around the 3 minute mark.