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[English flag]Northumbrian Music Page

Welcome to my Northumbrian music page! This page contains information about the music of the Northumberland region of England - types of tunes, unique instruments, notable musicians and groups.


General Information

Depending on who you talk to, Northumberland (a region of England which shares a border with Scotland) may or may not technically be a "Celtic" region. If it's not, then it's close enough (in my opinion) to be included on my site. Unfortunately, I have very little information to put on this page, but I'll try to change that.


Musicians & Groups

Kathryn Tickell
She is considered by some to be the leading player of the Northumbrian smallpipes. After hearing her play, I can understand why! She is also a fairly talented fiddler.
Pauline Cato
Another very gifted player of the Northumbrian smallpipes. She plays in a duo with fiddler Tom McConville.

Unique Instruments

Northumbrian smallpipes
The Northumbrian smallpipes are bellows-blown smallpipes, similar in construction to the Scottish smallpipes. The Northumbrian pipes have a very mellow sound which distinguishes them from other types of bagpipes.
YouTube link - "Lads of Alnwick/Old as the Hills" played by Kathryn Tickell

Types of Tunes

Note: Sheet music and MIDI files are available for each tune. Just click the "Sheet music" link to view the sheet music, or click the "MIDI file" link to listen to the MIDI file. You can also save the sheet music or MIDI file by right-clicking the link and selecting "Save As", "Save Link As", or "Save Target As" (depending on which browser you're using) on the menu that appears.

Hornpipe [ Sheet music | MIDI file ]
The hornpipe is an important part of the Northumbrian musical tradition. A lot of the older tunes I have encountered are in 3/2 or 6/4, rather than the more common (and familiar) 4/4 that most other hornpipes use. The tune I've used as an example was first published in 1705, but there's no telling how much farther back the tune actually goes.