Intro

20 04 2007

This is just a simple site I put together to help me (and anyone else) learn how to play the tin whistle. I prefer to have the streaming video, mp3, sheet music and finger chart all in on one page for easy reference since I am a complete noob. This Intro page has 5 easy songs to learn. On the menu bar above, there are three additional tunes that I am trying to learn as my short term goal.

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Quicky Note and Fingering Overview

A simple reference chart for notes and fingering. The black oval thingies on the flute are your fingers. I made them oval shape so you can see which hand covers the holes. Most tutors mention that its best to use your left hand for the top holes, even if you are a lefty. (like me). This is because if you decide to play a different type of flute in the future, you can pick it up easier. Note: C and F are actually C# and F#. Also, some people play high D with the “b” hole open. For a more detailed explanation on reading sheet music, The WhistleStop has a good tutorial.

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Song #1: Twinkle Twinkle Little Star’ : D D A A B B A, G G F F E E D

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Video 1

As I was surfing around on the internet to find tin whistle tutorials, I came across Ryan Duns’s excellent video tutorials that he posted on Youtube. The first two you can view below. The rest of his videos you can find at his Fordham University Blog or at Whistlethis. The first video has a good intro on how to finger the flute, then introduces the song “Mary Had a Little Lamb”.

Song #2: Mary Had A Little Lamb

In [G Key]: F E D E FFF EEE FAA FEDE FFF F EE F E D

In [D Key]: B A G A BBB AAA BDD BAGA BBB B AA B A G

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The second video covers more basic fingering and introduces the song “Dawning of the Day”.

Song #3: The Dawning of the Day D E F F F E F A A B A F D F E D D D

(Two versions, not sure which is correct at the moment)

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sheet music credit

BTW: According to Wiki, The Dawning of the Day is an old Irish song composed by the blind harpist Thomas Connellan in the 17th Century. It is famed for being the melody behind the song Raglan Road which was performed by a number of notable artists including: The Dubliners, Sinead O’Connor, Luke Kelly and Dire Straits. This song also goes by the Gaelic name Fáinne Geal an Lae.

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Two additional songs to practice, Amazing Grace and Danny Boy. Yeah, I know the ITM scene frowns upon these songs, especially Danny Boy (Londonderry Air), but for me they are easy to figure out and good for practicing my tone recognition. (Plus I live in Asia, so nobody has a clue what I am playing anyway~!)

Song #4: Amazing Grace

D G Bag B A G E D – DeG Bg B aB D+ – B D+ Bag B A G E D – DeG Bag B A G

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Song #5: Londonderry Air (Danny Boy)

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Written by Frederick Weatherly, an Englishman around the turn of the 20th century using an old Irish aire. It was popularized in vaudeville by the Irish Americans and soon became a St. Patrick’s Day favorite.

Sheet music credit
Another sheet music link for this song

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Please leave a comment or send an email if you think I can improve anything here. I know the finger/note charts for some of the songs do not match exactly ~ I will try to fix them as soon as possible. I do not have a book or CD to reference, so I just winged everything.

I probably won’t add a lot of new content here for awhile since #1: I have to practice what I already posted and #2: There are already loads of other good sites that have more advanced tutorials than what i can offer. If anyone more experienced with the tin whistle feels motivated and wants to take over this free site, you are welcome to contact me. Cheers – taipeimarc@hotmail.com

add: (recommend learning by bp)

  • Saddle the Pony, Boys of Blue Hills (Father Duns – week9)
  • Irish Rover
  • Saint Anne’s Reels (mp3 on Flutesite)
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