Tunes from Aallotar

Thursday September 15, 7:00pm
Seman Violins (4447 Oakton in Skokie)

A concert, followed by a workshop/jam.
Admission is $20.

We welcome back our friends, Sara Pajunen and Tejia Niku, for an evening of enchanting Finnish folk music from both sides of the Atlantic Ocean. After their concert set, we will work on playing a few tunes together. Check out the notation link at the bottom of this post.

Fiddle Club of the World welcomes all players, listeners, and lovers of traditional music.

Aamupolska (Morning Polska)


More Tunes from Aallotar (dots on a page)

And here’s a video view of Tallari.

Fiddle Club Guests for Fall 2016

Meetings held at Seman Violins (4447 W. Oakton, Skokie).
Admission is $20 at the door.

All meetings begin with a short concert followed by a jam/workshop.

Aallotar – Thursday, September 15, 7pm
Sarah Pajunen, of Minneapolis, and Tejia Niku, of Helsinki, make a hands-across-the-water Finnish duo that makes ‘exquisite, sophisticated chamber-folk music’ aimed to explore the differences and similarities of a culture separated by an ocean and the passage of time. Tejia was a Fiddle Club guest in June 2010 with Polka Chicks. Sarah was here with Kaivama and Arto Järvelä in March 2012.

Premo & Gustavsson – Sunday, October 23, 7:30pm
Premo-GustavssonWith fiddle, clawhammer banjo, nyckelharpa, and occasional bi-lingual vocals, the sound of Laurel Primo, from Michigan, and Anna Gustavsson, from Sweden, “is built off of the driving dance-based fiddle traditions from both countries, as well as the adventuresome musicality of 21st century musicians.”

Brandi Berry – Friday, November 18, 7:30pm
Brandi Berry is currently deep into Scottish music, especially from the musically fruitful and culturally vibrant 18th century. She also plays a mean baroque violin and a driving bluegrass fiddle. She is a director of the Bach & Beethoven Ensemble, and teaches at DePaul University and the Old Town School of Folk Music.

Come join us. It’ll be great.

-Paul Tyler, convener
Fiddle Club of the World (Chicago Chapter)

5th Annual Battle of the Bands

The 5th annual Battle of the Bands, sponsored by the Fiddle Club of the World, will be held in Szold Hall at the Old Town School of Folk Music (4545 N. Lincoln) in Chicago on Saturday, July 9, 7-9pm. Part of the Square Roots Festival.

3 bands, 2 hours of dancing, intermittent dance lessons, big fun

The winning band is the one that best fills the floor with dancers. Vote with your feet.

All competing bands regularly play for dancing, but not all feature fiddles. However, the number of fiddlers in the competing bands balances out.Teresa Shine Trio
Teresa Shine Trio
with Jim Dewan on guitar & Mike Austin on bodhran
Irish music : Raised on the South side of Chicago, an area rich in Irish culture, Teresa was first introduced to Irish traditional music from Phil Durkin, an Immigrant from County Sligo, Ireland, who taught her how to play the fiddle. Growing up, she and her siblings spent many years playing with Phil along with the Irish musicians of Chicago at the Ceilis, sessions, and Irish music events locally, nationally, and back in Ireland. in more recent years, she has spent much of her time being a musician for Irish Dancing competitions (feiseanna) and performances, some of which have taken her to World Folk Festivals as a musician for the Trinity Irish Dancers. Currently, She leads a monthly session at Connolly’s in Oak Park and teaches Irish music classes at the Old Town School of Folk music, Chicago Gaelic Park, and Saint John Fisher school in Chicago.

Jafra (Name of a character in Palestinian folk songs>
Ronnie Malley – oud, Dusan Simic – woodwinds & percussion,
Hamze Allham – vocals & shibaba & Ahmed Hamad – dance teacher
The Palestinian members of the group hail from Al-Quds/Jerusalem and Gaza. Ahmad Hamad, the dance instructor, has studied traditional dabke steps and teaches at various workshops around the area and across the country. Ronnie Malley performs, among other instruments, oud and vocals. Ronnie performs with a number of different orchestras/groups and has taken special interest in the tradition of Arab Andalusian music. Hamze Allaham is a vocalist and shibaba player, as well as a poet who performs classical Levantine Arab songs, folk melodies, and his own poetry. Dusan Simic performs various traditional woodwind, string, and percussion instruments from the Balkans/Levant, and his specialty is the calgija and village music of Kosovo/Southern Serbia. While these musicians have strong backgrounds in folkloric tradition, they also contribute modern, unique elements to their performances.

Fiddle Club of the World (Chicago Chapter)
Fiddle Club of the World (Chicago Chapter)
Judy Higgins, Mitzi Lebensorger, Rebecca Brooke Skrede, Vidar Skrede on fiddle
Othello Anderson on flute, Rene Cardoza on vihuela, Gail Tyler on bass
Paul Tyler on fiddle, dance teacher
American, Nordic and Mexican music. Simple set and couple dances from three fiddle-crazy parts of the world: Norway, Mexico, and the US of A. The Chicago Chapter was formed in 2008, and has since hosted 58 guest musicians from 10 countries and 21 US States representing 16 ethnic music traditions and numerous distinctive styles of fiddling. The Chicago Chapter holds monthly jam session to play tunes learned from our guests and other sources.

Tunes from Betse & Clarke

Betse & Clarke
Sunday June 19, 7:30pm
The Atlantic Bar and Grill (5062 N Lincoln Ave)

A concert, followed by a workshop/jam.
Admission is $15.

Fiddle Club is thrilled to present Midwestern duo Betse Ellis and Clarke Wyatt for a special evening of fiddle and banjo tunes. Betse & Clarke explore their love of old time music with an inventive spirit, taking listeners on a field trip across mountain folkways and new landscapes. Their music is familiar… and totally different; a fiddle and banjo duo with a sense of adventure, radiating outward from Kansas City, Missouri.Betse Ellis & Clarke Wyatt
Betse Ellis plays fiddle and sings like nobody’s business. Her years with The Wilders proved her passion for Ozark tunes and an unstoppable stage presence. Her early violin studies continue to shape her musicianship through technique and composition. Clarke Wyatt has an original and creative approach to three-finger banjo. His background as a pianist and composer inform his banjo method as much as his love for old time music.

Here is a tune to help you get ready for the workshop/jam in the back room at the Atlantic. More info:

Calico – learning at tempo

Calico – learning, slow

Calico – learning, fiddle slow

Calico – learning, banjo slow

Want to hear more? Go here.

– Judy Higgins, Fiddle Club associate

Tunes from Kristian Bugge

Danish Fiddle Tunes with
Lydom, Bugge & Høirup
Thursday, June 16, 7:30pm
Seman Violins
(4447 W. Oakton in Skokie)
A concert set, followed by an old-time jam.
Admission is $18.
Purchase tickets here. Reserve your seat.

Lydom, Bugge & Hoirup
Accordionist and harmonica player Sonnich Lydom, fiddle player Kristian Bugge and guitarist and singer Morten Alfred Høirup. This lively trio performs old dance tunes and songs from every corner of their Scandinavian home country. From rural islands like Læsø to metropolitan Copenhagen, including a few of their own compositions. Expect everything from wild polkas and jigs to lyrical waltzes, fiery reels and happy hopsas, plus the exotic “Sønderhoning” dance tunes from the famous Island of Fanø, and long forgotten songs from all over the country. An unforgettable live experience spiced up with humor and stories from their many years on the road.

Here are some tunes, played slow, followed by the same tunes as heard on their new CD Gagspil, where each is part of a longer set. We’ll work on these at the workshop/jam following their concert on June 16.

Lyngbjerg Hopsa slow

Lyngbjerg Hopsa

Springdans slow


Fiddle Club is not just for fiddlers. All players and music lovers are welcome to join us.

-Paul Tyler, convener

Big Fiddle Week Coming to Chicago

Lydom, Bugge & Høirup
Lydom, Bugge & Høirup
folk music from Denmark
Thursday, June 16 – 7:30pm
Seman Violins (4447 W. Oakton in Skokie)
Admission $18

Betse Ellis & Clarke Wyatt
Betse & Clarke
Traditional/Future Folk
Sunday, June 19 – 7:30pmg
Atlantic Bar & Grill (5062 Lincoln in Chicago)
Admission $15

Fiddle Tunes Jam
Fiddle Tunes Jam!
Make Music Chicago
Tuesday, June 21 – 6 to 8pm
Winnemac Park (Damen & Foster in Chicago)
free to all players and listeners, bring a chair

A Fiddle Club Fandango

Don Ricardo Ibarra
with family and friends
Friday, May 13, 7:30pm
Seman Violins (4447 W. Oakton in Skokie)
$15 admission

Don Ricardo Ibarra
This musical house party will be hosted by mis amigos, Juan Rivera and Pedro Gomez. They will introduce to Son Caletano. For Pedro and Don Ricardo, this is a deep-rooted family tradition. For Juan, it is the music of a neighboring region. (The video below was filmed at a party in Juan’s back yard in Cicero last summer.) Let this night be a party, and let us all be open to what can happen when musicians get together to play, and talk a bit, about the music they love. There will be playing and singing and, hopefully, a little dancing. Perhaps there will be a little teaching for those of us new to Son Caletano.

Some background from Juan Rivera:
Don Ricardo Ibarra was born in 1941 in Tiquicheo Michoacán, part of the “Hot Land’s” region (La Tierra Caliente). His Father, don Miguel Ibarra, was a very important fiddler in the region of the Son Calentano. He played with many important musicians of the region and was a contempory of don Juan Reynoso, known as the “Paganini de Tierra Caliente”. He taught his 4 sons to play the music since they were children and also his nephew Serafín Ibarra*. Don Ricardo Ibarra’s first instrument was the guitar and vihuela, but after his older brother Enrique died in 2005, he took up the fiddle again and started to play it since then with his brothers Miguel and Guadalupe and his cousin Ismael.

Here’s a link to an article en Español that Juan wrote for the Federation de Clubes Michoacana en Illinois.

*Serafin Ibarra has appeared on stage at the Old Town School of Folk Music several times. I took a workshop with him at the School’s Festival of Mexican Son in 2005.

-Paul Tyler, convener

Tunes from Harry Bolick

Old-Time Fiddle Tunes from Mississippi with
Harry Bolick
Friday, April 22, 7:30pm
Seman Violins
(4447 W. Oakton in Skokie)
A concert set, followed by an old-time jam.
Admission is $15.

How many fiddle tunes do you know that hail from Mississippi? Really. You need to learn a few more, because they are some of the coolest, quirkiest, funnest tunes ever found in these here United States. And our next Fiddle Club guest, Harry Bolick, a Brooklyn-ite with deep Mississippi roots, is just the guy to introduce us to this regional tradition and some of its fine tunes. Harry has recently published and produced the book and CDs pictured above, all containing tunes collected in Mississippi during the 1930s by folklorists working for the Works Project Administration, part of FDR’s New Deal. Here’s a sample.

Mississippi Shuffle
Mississippi Shuffle slow

White Hat
White Hat slow

Sugar in the Gourd
Sugar in the Gourd slow

Bust down.

Paul Tyler, convener

A Fiddle Calendar for a Chicago Summer

Upcoming Fiddle Club of the World (and other) events
lots and lots of happenings, starting in April

Sunday, April 17, 7-9pm: monthly jam at Gideon Welles (4500 N. Lincoln)

Friday, April 22, 7:30pm: Harry Bolick guests at Fiddle Club of the World
at Seman Violins (4447 W. Oakton in Skokie)

Friday, April 29, 8:30pm: Big Shoulders Square Dance with Cook County Revelers & Tamara Loewenthal

Saturday, April 30, daytime: fiddle & banjo workshops with Bruce Molsky
& clogging workshop with Tamara Loewenthal
(see Old Town School of Folk Music workshop listings)

Saturday, April 30, 8pm: Bruce Molsky in concert at the Old Town School of Folk Music

Sunday, May 15, 7-9pm: monthly jam at Gideon Welles (4500 N. Lincoln)

Thursday, June 16, 7:30pm: Lydom, Bugge & Høirup, Fiddle Club guests from Denmark
at Seman Violins (4447 W. Oakton in Skokie)

Sunday, June 19, 7pm: Betse Ellis & Clark Wyatt guest at Fiddle Club of the World
at the Atlantic Bar & Grille (5042 N. Lincoln)

Tuesday, June 21, 6-8pm: Fiddle Club jam for Make Music Chicago 2016
at Winnemac Park, all players are welcome

July 7-10: 14th Midwest Fiddle Championship* and 5th Battle of the Bands
at Square Roots Festival (Lincoln Square in Chicago)
*rumors that a Banjo Division will be included are true