Chris Haigh

Exploring Folk Fiddle

An Introduction to Folk Styles, Technique and Improvisation
Schott Pop-Styles

The Top of Maol

Donnybrook Fair

Haste to the Wedding

Musical EditionsMusic lesson book, online playback
Item no.694328
Author / ComposerChris Haigh
Scope208 pages; 23 × 30.5 cm
Release year2019
Publisher / ProducerSchott Music
Producer No.ED 13460D


  • This in-depth tutor book, from renowned fiddle player and teacher Chris Haigh, is perfect for classical violinists and fiddle players looking to master the art.
  • Covering all aspects of folk violin technique from ornamentation to modes and scales, and from scordatura to improvisation and composition.
  • The book is centred around Irish traditional music, but also dips into English, Scottish, Scandinavian, East European, Klezmer, Cajun and American Old-Time traditions.
  • Accompanied by audio recordings (to download) of all pieces performed by Chris Haigh with a live backing band. Folk fiddle and classical violin are as different as chalk and cheese.

At first glance, folk might seem so simple it's hardly worth bothering with. The tunes are often no more than 32 bars long, they stay in first position, and they don't even have a composer. However, it's what's NOT written on the page that makes folk fiddle so interesting and challenging.This book attempts to explore, from general observation down to the finest detail, what the fiddler needs to know to bring these tunes alive.

We need to understand their history and context, their purpose, their structure and pulse. And we need to be able to add all the stylistic elements that come not from reading the music, but from years of immersion in folk music, both listening and playing. Key areas covered include:

  • Tune types and structures
  • Ornamentation
  • Bowing
  • Modes and scales
  • Scordatura
  • Starts, endings and links
  • Variation, improvisation and composition Playing tunes in 'sets'
  • Regional and individual style
  • Playing in sessions, for contests, and for dancing


  • Introduction
  • Tune Types
  • More Tune Types and Structures
  • Ornamentation
  • Bowing
  • Modes and Scales
  • East European, Klezmer and Untempered Scales
  • Tunings
  • What's Missing? Variation, Improvisation and Composition
  • The Joy Of Sets
  • Playing For Dancing
  • Odds And Ends
35.00  €
incl. VAT, plus shipping
Delivery time: 2–5 working days (Germany)
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