The Scoobie Tunes Collection (Cape Breton Style Fiddle Tunes Book)
SCOOBIE TUNES (a family fiddle frenzy)
Cape Breton Style Fiddle Tunes, Composed by Scott Macmillan
As a guitarist, I have been asked, “why write fiddle tunes, if you’re not a fiddler?” Over the years I have spent many hours accompanying fiddlers on guitar and learning the forms and styles as an accompanist, not as the melody instrument. Some of the fiddlers who I have had both had the pleasure to work with and have sessions with include; Jarvis Benoit, David Greenberg, Jerry Holland, Ashley MacIsaac, Dave MacIsaac, Buddy MacMaster and Natalie MacMaster, to name a few.
“Ordinarily you would ask, why is a guitar player writing fiddle tunes? But there is nothing ordinary about Scott Macmillan”– Mail Star; December 1996.
Very gradually I started to try my own hand at composing fiddle tunes, primarily in the Cape Breton style of fiddle music. I have found it fascinating that such a finite form of music can have so many possibilities and infinite variations. You will find a number of Scoobie Tunes recorded on the ‘Scott Macmillan Presents the Minnie Session’ series of recordings
“Macmillan’s collection will be a valuable guide for musicians and music lovers”– The Oran; January 1997.
As I have already mentioned, I came to fiddle music as an accompanist. I felt it was important therefore, to include chord symbols with the music. The chords are meant to be a guide or a jumping off point to your own personal approach to providing harmony to my “Scoobie Tunes”. At the very least they provide a chord structure to these tunes that will definitely work. I’ve purposely avoided writing a bass line. I have found with my experience as an accompanist with the Cape Breton Style of fiddle music that the approach to the bass line is very individualistic; so I leave that up to you.
“Fiddle Tunes capture composer’s memories” – Daily News; December 1996.
Writing fiddle tunes always brings me back to specific personal memories of the time when each tune was composed. The “Scoobie Tunes (A Family Fiddle Frenzy)” reflects some of those “moments in time” in my life. I have included the stories that relate to each of these tunes in my “Scoobie Fables” at the back of the book. I hope that you, the reader, will enjoy my musical offering as well as these “moments in time”.