51. Play Along Polkas

Carolan Guitar

Inspired by Mark’s thoughts on embodied learning from our last post, we’ve been exploring how Carolan might support players learning new music. As a first step – and drawing on Carolan’s Celtic heritage – we set out to create a video tutorial for learning to accompany traditional Irish tunes.

We start by choosing a classic set of three Irish polkas, beginning with Egan’s Polka …


… before segueing into Jessica’s Polka …


… and finally ending with Ryan’s Polka …


Next we invite Carolan’s friends Milli on fiddle and Penny on flute to join Steve on banjo to record a the tunes, repeating each three times as is typical in sessions in our neck of the woods.

Our next task is to record an accompaniment on Carolan.

We then edit a composite of the two videos to demonstrate how they sound together.

Now we need to figure out how best to map these three tuition videos to the interactive surfaces of the guitar so as to support embodied learning.

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