Introducing Music Stand Mondays

by Cynthia Shelhart

Happy New Year, and welcome to a new feature of my blog: Music Stand Mondays!

Music Stand Mondays is a new series I've created to share tunes with harpers and other musicians in multiple formats. Whether you're a visual learner (I want the dots!), an auditory learner (Play it again, Sam!), or a little of both, I hope that you'll find something fun and/or useful each week.

In each post, I will feature a tune (public domain or an original composition), with background information, a downloadable "lead sheet" (melody + chords) PDF, and 3 audio files:
- The melody alone;
- The melody + a "one-note" accompaniment (using chord roots);
- The melody + an accompaniment that uses chord-based patterns.

And I have ulterior motives. Recording the audio for each post (in my own studio, with GarageBand on my iPad) will also help me get studio-ready for a new project. (More on that later.)

As I experiment with the format along the way, I hope you'll let me know how you like the series.

So, on to the first tune - Eleanor Plunkett by Turlough O'Carolan!

Eleanor Plunkett

  • Composed by: Turlough O'Carolan (Ireland, 1670-1738)
  • Key/tuning and meter: Key of G tuning; 3/4
  • About the tune: This beautiful air was written by O'Carolan in praise of Eleanor Plunkett of County Meath, Ireland. It was the very first Irish tune that I ever learned on the harp.

Visual learners: Click here to download a PDF of the tune in lead sheet format from my book, Tunes to Go.

Auditory learners: Here are the audio files for Eleanor Plunkett:
- Audio A: melody alone
- Audio B: melody + one-note accompaniment
- Audio C: melody + pattern-based accompaniment

Hope you enjoy this inaugural tune. Which tune would you like to see next Monday? Let me know in the comments below!