The Jink & Diddle School of Scottish Fiddling

Traditional Scottish Fiddle Music

Topic Classes - 2021

— Class Descriptions —


Topic Classes                                                                              Click here to download a description list from the Document Library

Tuesdays & Thursdays, 8:15 - 9:15 p.m. [EDT]


Special Topic Classes


These classes are your chance to learn about different aspects of the Scottish music tradition that our faculty is particularly passionate about!  Each session will delve into diverse topics and give you insight into some important (and awesome!) tools and ideas you can use to expand your understanding of Scottish fiddling.  Here are the topics being offered this year:


Tuesday, 7/27:  Mari Black teaches "Fiery Pipe Tunes for Fiddlers"

Even we fiddlers can admit it: some of the coolest tunes out there are pipe tunes.  The awesome variations, the many parts, the intricate ornamentation, the powerful sound…it’s pretty irresistible.  And we fiddlers can steal every bit of it!  In this class, we'll explore the tunes, techniques, and tricks you need to turn yourself into a great pipe tune player.


Thursday, 7/29:  Joanna Johnson introduces a "Tune Writing Workshop"

Have you always wanted to write a tune but didn't know where to start? This is the class for you! We'll discuss the building blocks and structure of traditional Scottish tunes, review the most common scales and modes that appear in our fiddle repertoire, and dive right into writing some tunes ourselves! A little introduction to ABC notation will also be included. You too can be a composer and you too can contribute to next year's Book of Tunes!


Tuesday, 8/3:  Dr John Turner explores "Some Famous Patrons of the Gows and Marshall - 

    and the Tunes Written in Their Honour"

Before his 19th birthday, Niel Gow already enjoyed the patronage of the 2nd Duke of Atholl.  In his long life, he was retained by the 3rd and 4th Dukes of Atholl as well.  William Marshall spent most of his life in the employ of the 4th Duke of Gordon.  Explore with Dr John the relationships between these two famous Scottish fiddler/composers, and play through  some of the tunes they wrote for their patrons.  A tune list will be provided in advance of the class.


Thursday, 8/5:  Maura Shawn Scanlin takes you on "A Deep Dive into Drones, Double Stops, Chords & Harmony."

During this class, we will explore a few tunes in depth, and look at our options for adding chords, drones, and double stops into the melodies for added depth in sound!  We will explore which notes to add - and why; a practical application of some basic music theory!  You will leave this class with a better understanding of how to determine a tune's key and chord structure, as well as gained knowledge of how to accompany yourself by adding double stops and chords to illuminate the harmony.



Tune Time


Tuesday, 7/27:  Dr John Turner with Ralph Gordon


Wednesday, 7/29:  Dr John Turner with Ralph Gordon


Tuesday, 8/3:  Joanna Johnson with Ralph Gordon


Thursday, 8/5:  Dr John Turner with Ralph Gordon


Dr. John Turner - 10-time National Scottish Fiddle Champion and founder/artistic director of Jink & Diddle - is renowned for his encyclopaedic knowledge of and passion for 18th century Scottish traditional fiddle music, as well as the stories behind it.  He will undoubtedly share gems of related Scottish history, and impart wisdom from his many years dedicated to the preservation of Scottish music.  Come play along and immerse yourself in some tunes and tales with one of the greats from the rich Scottish fiddling tradition!


Joanna Johnson – also a National Scottish Fiddle Champion – brings a fresh new perspective to the world of traditional Scottish fiddling.  As an instructor, she has been sharing her joy in music-making since 2008 and Joanna will inspire you to greater heights as you play along with the tunes, both old and new – some of them her own compositions!


Two nights each week either Dr. John or Joanna along with Ralph Gordon will explore:

      1. The John Clark Collection (1797), the eighteenth-century music source for Jink 2021
      2. The Jink Book o’ Tunes 2021, a contemporary collection of tunes composed by Jinkers and instructors
      3. Jink’s collection of Rally Music, filled with favourite traditional tunes.


                                                                                  Click here to download a description list from the Document Library

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