Some Theory for Folkies: Intervals to Watch Out For
Dick Bagwell
Sunday, June 9, 2013, 12:00pm
Music 2 - Room #108

Traditional music gives instrument players the chance to soar. But the wind under our wings is the underlying structure of the tune. Understanding that - call it "theory" - can offer insights into specifics like phrasing. In this workshop, using British Isles and American trad dance tunes as examples, Dick will help students understand modes, scales, and chord progressions; why the key signature on the sheet doesn't necessarily indicate the key in which one is playing; why the dominant 7th interval keep popping up in this music; what cadences are, and how different types effect the melodic line, and just what is it that the composer/folk process is doing here.

Dick Bagwell was the beneficiary of a strong instrumental music program at his high school, and went on to play in a genuine Old Country-style Italian street banda, and also played offensive saxophone for Northwestern University's football team. But he discovered traditional British Isles music when he started to work for the old Renaissance Pleasure Faires, and his life has never been the same. He has played, and danced, with the Deer Creek Morris Men for, oh - a lot of years. He occasionally plays for BACDS country dances. He's given workshops on various topics at the John C. Campbell Folk School in North Carolina, and at the annual gathering of the Taborers Society (i.e. pipe and tabor players) in Gloucester, UK, among others settings. His "The Pipe & Tabor Tutor" is the standard work on the subject. He's composed or arranged music for a number of stage productions, mostly for the Pasadena Shakespeare Theatre. Hear some of his music at