Betty Likens – ‘Old Time’

I’m starting to get interested in ‘old time’ country music. These are the predecessors of modern bluegrass and many of the tunes have their roots in Irish, Scottish and Northern English traditional music. This version of Betty Likens (or Betsy Likens) seems to have been altered to sound more bluesy, there’s a lot of pentatonic stuff going on here. I’ve used Lisa McCormick’s guitar part (her lesson is on Youtube) and added ukulele and my diddley-bow (this one is a cigar box version).


Dingle Regatta – Jig

This one is great fun to play, I love the descending run in the third part which is really not too difficult. The second part is the most tricky, probably because of keeping it true to the campanella style.

I’ve seen it written out as a slide (12/8), but my guitar teacher, Bill Brennan, had it as a simple jig. I’ll let the purists argue that one out – it doesn’t make any difference to me.

I will be adding this one to my collection of Jigs and Reels for campanella uke soon, anyone who has already bought it will get it as an update.

Some Campanella Runs to Practice

This piece, which doesn’t have a name yet and probably never will, is a study in mixing straightforward fingerpicking patterns based on chords with Campanella runs. The central chord is a C5 and the second ukulele plays a C minor. I had a little trouble deciding what key it was in but thanks to Guitar Pro I was able to see that the least number of accidentals was B flat so that’s the key I’ve given it.  As it’s based on the second note of the B flat scale, that makes it C Dorian, but that’s neither here nor there. I’ll wait and see if anybody is interested in learning it before posting tabs, so in the meantime here are two of the campanella runs to practice. They are quite similar in sound and structure.

1.

campanella run 1

2.

campanella run 2