Early Stage Pennywhistle
Dick Bagwell

The workshop is primarily pitched for players who’ve got the basic fingering down and have a few tunes under control, but still consider themselves “early stage.” Complete beginners are very welcome, and should get some useful information. Bring a D whistle if you can, but come anyhow—we won’t do that much actual playing.

The workshop will include a little historical background of this humble but very versatile instrument, and where it fits into the overall traditional music scene. No focus on any particular tradition; just how to play the axe better. We’ll look at some not-so-obvious things about technique—blowing and fingering, why you’ll usually be playing in G on a D whistle (and how), and some ideas about finding cool tunes in other repertoires.

Dick has been playing fipple flutes (recorder, pennywhistle, and tabor (3 hole) pipe—the whistle’s wacky cousin) for over 30 years. He’s done occasional tabor and pipe workshops for the annual Taborers Society gathering in Glouchester, UK (also was a featured performer), for San Francisco Early Music Society, and pennywhistle for the Kicking Mule Camp. He is the author of The Pipe & Tabor Tutor, available from Lark in the Morning, Susato Music, Sweetheart Flute Co. and the Early Music Shop, UK.