I first attended the Swannanoa Gathering as a volunteer for Celtic week back in 2008. I had the pleasure of taking a great DADGAD class with Eamon O’Leary. If I still played guitar often enough, I’d like to have that laid back approach that he does.
Donal Clancy led a flat picking guitar class that was waaaayyy laid back. So laid back in fact that on one of the class days, he even left the room half way through the class and didn’t return. No problem though, because I did learn a few fantastic tunes the first two days I attended his class.
I’ve had some time to convert the first two we learned into mandolin tablature and standard notation. I’m aiming to get around to the last two in a while. They are, all four, nice grooving irish trad tunes.
Since I wasn’t sure if Mr. Clancy was going to show up for future classes, luckily, Robin Bullock allowed me to sneak into an octave mandolin class of his. Also, a great experience. Even though he tuned his octave mandolin GDAD, I learned some great tips on how to hear the ‘corners’ of a song, to be able to better figure out tunes on the fly. Thank Robin!