Lesson One: Polkas, Jigs, & Slides
Kevin Burke’s easygoing manner and encouraging teaching style invite you into the world of authentic traditional Irish fiddle. In this superb starter lesson, he passes on his vast knowledge and experience through an in-depth study of some of his favorite tunes, styles and techniques.
Kevin understands the needs of the learning fiddler, and he conveys his ideas with clarity and simplicity. Focusing on Irish polkas, slides and jigs, he teaches the basic tune, along with several variations, explaining the rhythmic devices that distinguish each dance form. He then shows you the grace notes, rolls, double-stops and other ornaments that make this music so distinctive, and that keep it in the true Irish tradition.
By the end of this first lesson you’ll be playing Saddle the Pony, The Connaughtman's Rambles, The King of the Fairies, Bill Sullivan's Polka, Johnny Leary's Slide, Micho Russell's Slide and more. Best of all, you’ll have gained a solid foundation that will enable you to play this beloved music with real flair and authority.
Learn to Play Irish Fiddle DVD 2
Lesson Two: Reels, Jigs, & Gavottes
On his second lesson, the legendary Kevin Burke takes you to the next level of Irish fiddle playing, with reference to the styles of Donegal, Clare, Kerry, Sligo and Brittany. The reels, jigs and gavottes he teaches are faster, more complex tunes than on lesson one, with wonderful variations and stylistic devices typical of the great traditional Irish fiddlers.
You’ll learn to play a number of haunting tunes, including The Cottage Grove, Bonnie Kate, Jenny’s Chickens, The Man From Bundoran, The Rose in the Heather, Dan Collins' Father's Jig, The Miller Of Droghan, Connie O'Connell's, A Cup of Tea, Off To The Races and three Breton gavottes. Kevin breaks down each tune in detail, teaching the melody slowly and then analyzing the rolls, triplets, grace notes, bowing techniques, rhythmic timing, phrasing and other elements that make these dance tunes come alive.
Although the emphasis of this lesson is naturally on Irish music, you’ll learn important fiddle techniques that will serve you well in any style you play.