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Watch the The Celtic Journeyman online guitar lesson by Tony McManus from The Celtic Journeyman

Hi, I’m Tony McManus and welcome to “The Celtic Journeyman”

Celtic music is basically the traditional music of the western extremities of Europe- the coast of Scotland and Ireland, also Wales, northwest France (Brittany) and northwest Spain (the provinces of Galicia and Asturias). We are going to be looking at the real nuts and bolts dance music that got, and still gets people through the day.

The guitar in this music is still finding its own way. I grew up in Scotland listening to a lot of Irish music and so have been grappling with the two obsessions- one being the guitar itself- the instrument we all love- and the other being traditional music itself. I’ve been trying to find a role for our instrument in that music.

I’ve divided the course into two sections. The first being a toolkit of essential concepts; we’re going to look at ornamentation with each hand, we’re going to play a scale across the strings and more. Hopefully these ideas will unlock some doors for you.

In the second section we’re going to look at six significant tunes that illustrate some the aspects of Celtic music – the depth and scope of the genre including; an Irish ballad air “The Accursed Kerryman”, a Scottish fiddle tune “Tullochgorum”, a slow arrangement of an Irish reel “The Old Bush”, a march from Brittany in DADGAD tuning, an Irish jig “Out on the Ocean” and finally a four part march “The Heights of Cassino” from the Highland bagpipe tradition that sums all the ideas presented in the course. For each performance study in addition to playing the tune I’ll break it down and refer back to concepts introduced earlier in the course and finish up each performance with a slow run through of the tune.

In addition to the audio you’ll get for each tune both standard notation and tablature so you can take as much time as you need to get these tunes under your fingers.

So, if you’re ready for your celtic journey to begin grab your guitars and let’s play.