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Archived News November 2009

A box of ‘No Use in Cryin’ CDs, the new release from Rattle on the Stovepipe, has now arrived (available from SHOP). The title comes from a song Dave Arthur sings about Dillard Chandler, an American traditional mountain ballad-singer filmed in the 1960s.

No Use in Cryin CD cover

The band were in France in August, playing at a birthday party in a barn near Troyes (thanks, Pat), and posing in front of a mediaeval stovepipe (photos by Sue Lee).

Troyes BarnRattle with stovepipe

We had the pleasure at Whitby Folk Week of teaming up with the legendary Tom Paley (ex-New Lost City Rambers) to lead an Old Time session at the Middle Earth tavern. I’ve known London resident Tom since the 1970s, and he’s taught me a lot of tunes, Old Time and Swedish. It was a fine session, of which a 24-second video clip appears on YouTube - but more of that in a moment. In a break from the prevailing Old Time vibe, David Oliver (ex-Folkworks) sang a spirited version of Blaydon Races, and also took a photo of us outside the pub.

Rattle on the Stovepipe with the legendary Tom Paley
The Legendary Tom Paley

You may have seen the video of Billy Hill, a 10-year-old pupil of mine, playing Little Rabbit on this website - it’s under Workshops. Well, his mum brought him to the Cellar Upstairs folk club, London on 5 September, and Billy joined us on Elzick’s Farewell, a West Virginia fiddle tune. Filmed by Helen Petts, ‘Billy plays with Rattle on the Stovepipe’ is now on YouTube. See the clip in Workshops.

Billy Hill with Pete Cooper
Billy Hill with Pete

Also on petecooperfiddle in YouTube, either as uploads or ‘favorited’, are three other Rattle on the Stovepipe clips filmed by Helen Petts at the same gig - Nancy (the Tom Clough tune), Dave’s ‘fresh-water shanty’ Did-na-Do, and me singing Craig Johnson’s poignant Piney Mountains. We’ll be playing at Lewes folk club on 26 November, and at the Poetry Café, London on 27 November - see GIGS.

A contrastingly lo-fi YouTube favorite is ‘Watching Pete Cooper at the London Fiddle Convention’, from GrowlersWorld, shot on his mobile phone, in which I’m playing two English tunes, Jack of the Green(9/8 jig) and John of the Green(3/2 hornpipe) - with very jerky bowing! Next year’s (18th annual) London Fiddle Convention, by the way, will take place on Sunday 21 February, 2010, at Cecil Sharp House. These are photos I took during a session in the bar at this year’s, featuring (left to right) fiddle players Meg White, Lucy Moffat, Lynne Harris-Johnson, Sarah Barton, Rawle Austin and John Batchelor.

Meg and LynneLynne, Sarah, Rawle and John

Before leaving the subject of YouTube, let me answer a question about The Bow Hold video that several viewers have asked. The tune at the start is called ‘Snicket’, it’s by Sue Lee, and I’ve recorded it with Richard Bolton (with Sue on accordion) on our 2006 CD The Savage Hornpipe - see SHOP. (There’s also an excellent 50-second version by Claudia and Noah on YouTube...)

My new book/CD of ninety-eight ‘American Old Time Fiddle Tunes’ is due to be published by Schott Music any day now. Like the new Rattle on the Stovepipe CD, it will definitely be out by the time of the annual Fiddle Party on Saturday 5 December - see GIGS. I’ll also be teaching some of the tunes at my Old Time Fiddle course at Cecil Sharp House, starting 6 January 2010 - see WORKSHOPS.

Hidenori, Pete and Tamiko in Kyoto
Hidenori Omori, Pete and
Tamiko Kimura in Kyoto, 2008

More exciting news on the publishing front is that my 1995 Mel Bay book/CDs The Complete Irish Fiddle Player has been translated into Japanese by former pupil - and organiser of the Tokyo Fiddle Club - Tamiko Kimura. Hopefully the new edition will be issued in Japan to coincide with my visit there in March 2010.

See you later,


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