Ep. 39: Irish Music for St. Patrick’s Day

March 13, 2017

With St. Patrick's Day right around the corner, I thought it was a good time to share some Irish style music I've recorded. A little back, I was asked to write some music for a video game. The maker of the game described the different scenes to me and I tried to match the mood the best I could to each of those scenes (without seeing any visuals). The project ended up not happening but at least I got some experience writing music in a different style. In each of these three pieces, I play an instrument called a melodica, which is sort of like an accordion and harmonica mashed together.

In The Pub

This music is intended for when one of the characters enters a pub where there is dancing and partying happening. I recorded this is my bathroom because I liked the particular echo sound it had. I started with the “drone-like” sound of the melodica, in an attempt to imitate bagpipes. The melodica also plays the melody and harmony. The majority of the percussion consists of myself hitting a suitcase in various ways with drum sticks and EQing the mix so that I had a spectrum of high, mid and low frequencies. I also recorded about 20 tracks of myself doing handclaps in order to get the crowd sound I was looking for. Lastly, I recorded a couple of low key violin parts (I haven’t played in several years, so I kept it simple).

Missing My Bride

This music goes along with a scene in the game where one of character's house burns down. The mood is sorrowful and is timed in a sad 6/8 waltz. I came up with the melody on the melodica, accompanied by a acoustic guitar played in a classical style. The tamborine part is inspired by gypsy folk music and intended sound a bit like a person dragging chains (to symbolize the emotional chains they carry).

Marching Into Battle

As the title implies, this music going along with a battle scene. As with the one of the other pieces, I used a melodica drone to imitate the sound of bagpipes. I recorded a doubled mandolin part for the melody. I also used my trusty suitcase for percussion: one track to imitate a snare drum sound, another heavy reverbed track to give a big, boomy kick drum (or war drum) sound.

Visit jakehaws.com for more songs.

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