Danny Boy – Neil Hogan

by admin on December 18, 2019

Danny Boy ranks as one of the most beautiful melodies to ever come out of Ireland, although the lyrics as we know them were written by an Englishman, Frederic Weatherly. He wrote the lines in the early 20th century to a different melody before he was introduced to the tune known as Londonderry Air, which had its origins in the 17th century.

This arrangement started out as a project for a student and I thought to try to keep it somewhat simple or straightforward and just bring in a little harmony below the melody notes, most of which are thirds or sixths. The main difficulty became playing it lyrically and connecting the voices smoothly.

My student begged off as he thought it was too hard but I figured I might as well make the most of it and polish it up a bit. I hope you enjoy it.

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The last part of this visit was spent with Muriel talking about getting to know Chet Atkins and his influence on her.

Neil brought up how he was influenced by John Renbourn and got to know him a bit. Then Muriel brought up a piece she heard Neil playing earlier, Last Train Home by Pat Metheny. She asked him to show her a bit of it and the rest of this clip turned into another Fly On The Wall Lesson and hopefully a more worked out version will become a lesson at Totally Guitars soon.

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Muriel visited Neil Hogan at TG Central in early January 2019, like she does regularly, and they started with a short look at her upcoming appearances, which was in Part 1.

Part 2 started with some thoughts on guitar injuries, stretching to prevent them, and Muriel’s approach to nail care and repair.

Next up was a mini-lesson for Neil with Muriel going over her arrangement of Close To You, The Carpenters classic written by Burt Bacharach and Hal David. It included some artificial harmonics and led to a discussion on arranging tunes for solo guitar and paying attention to many parts. Muriel also demonstrated a bit of her piece Arioso, which uses some unorthodox fingerings.

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