The Bal Folk Tune Book Project 2020

That’s one. Two hundred ten more to go!

My admiration for Bal Folk: Traditional Dance Music from Central France is well documented and knows no bounds, as is my appreciate for Dave Mallison, publisher of said volume. Released in 2010, the tunebook brought together the beloved (and obscure) “Pink Book” and “Blue Book” of Centre France music lore. I wrote about the book in 2011, and interviewed Mallinson about it shortly thereafter. It’s great and you should buy it.

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Buy this book.

Today — just over a fortnight into our covid-19 confinement — I am taking on a project. I will record every one of the 211 tunes in the tune book on YouTube videos, similar to the videos I’ve been posting on my channel for years. I don’t know how long it will take, and I’m not setting a demanding pace for myself (adding stress is not my goal), but I have decided on a couple of procedural norms.

  1. I will not be posting the dots with the videos. You should order the book.
  2. I will not be doing these in order, but I will also not being doing them randomly. There might be a clump of scottishes followed by a clump of waltzes, then bourrées, etc. It is all according to my whim. (Bwa. Ha. Ha?)
  3. I will be recording on all of my accordions (one at a time, not in a bunch), so the keys may differ from the key in the book. Welcome to diato world!
  4. If I have already done a recording of a tune, I will not necessarily redo it for this project (though I might — since my channel dates back to 2008 and, presumable, I’ve improved since then). But I will include it in the page I am constructing for this project so that, ultimately, every tune in the book will be on that page.
  5. I may post links to others’ recordings of these tunes in addition to mine, but not to replace them. If others want to take it upon themselves to join me in this project I will happily highlight your recordings.

Thank you! And here’s another: unnamed scottish. Tune #2 in the book.

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