Two Variations on Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star

This time we’ll have a go at some variations on Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star. I’ve been improvising over this one for decades, and it’s always fun. When you’re doing variations on a well-known folk melody like this, the process is a little “tighter” than improvisation: you are working with some of the main pitches that the original melody has, but you are connecting them with passing tones, sometimes moving them around a bit in the measure, and sometimes going up or down a 3rd (two frets on the dulcimer) for a bit of harmonic color.

Before we get to the two full variations on the pdf, I’d like to show you a little bit of the process I use — with just the first two measures in TAB on the melody string (tuning DAD):

original:

0—-0—-4—-4—-|5—-5—-4———|

one possible variation:

0—-2—-4—-4—-|5—-7—-4———|

or another:

0—-2-3-4—-7—-|5—-7—-4—-7—-|

So it’s not really that hard: you just keep some of the main notes in place where they should be and throw in a few different ones of your own choosing—connect a few notes of the original with eighth-note connectors. Try it!! The sky’s the limit, really…..see what you can come up with!

Here are my two 12-bar variations in music and TAB, with a blank second page so you can continue on your own. Try playing this as slow and dreamy as you can:

2twinklevariations

Sounds From The Circle VII !

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SFTC7-CoverI’m so thrilled to be a part of this incredible MP3 Compilation (for the second year in a row) with my piece for electric dulcimer “Louie – Very Free and Easy”!! This is a compilation of 49 artists from the New Age Music Circle (a ning community) put together by New Age music pioneer Suzanne Doucet, and Beth Hilton. There is an enormous amount of work in a project like this, and in this case, the end product is just spectacular: the music flows effortlessly, and you can just let it play for a soothing, relaxing, yet uplifting experience. Here is the official text:


About The New Age Music Circle & Sounds from the Circle VII

The New Age Music Circle – an online community of almost 1700 artists, industry professionals and fans –presents its seventh MP3 compilation in as many years with Sounds from the Circle VII. Produced by Suzanne Doucet, founder of the Circle, the compilations have become favorites among music fans as well as professional radio programmers and wellness practitioners who appreciate the ability to play almost four hours of music without stopping.

Just a sampling of the New Age music sub-genres included are Mystical, Chill, Ambient, Meditative, Vocals, Nature, Trance, World, Solo Piano, Space, Electronic and more! Sounds from the Circle VII is available in both physical format and duplicated in online playlists in Spotify and iTunes for all tracks available there by our launch date of 5/12/15. The Sounds of the Circle compilations are always eclectic, showcasing the wide range of inspiration, interpretation and musical vision within the New Age genre from countries across the globe including the USA, Canada, Australia, Argentina, Brazil, England, Scotland, India, Malaysia, Norway, Sweden, Germany, Singapore, Philippines, South Africa, Spain, Venezuela and more.

Sounds from the Circle VII will have increased promotional presence this year, including YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Spotify, iTunes and Instagram. Find out more about this music, or join the New Age Music Circle at http://newagemusik.ning.com

For more information, or for media review copies, event distribution, and promotional giveaways, contact The B Company, bethhilton@theBcompany.com, at 310-560-8390.


The Artists of SFTC VII

SFTC VII participating artists and groups include:

Ricky Kej & Wouter Kellerman – Fiona Joy – Minstrel Streams – Bryan Carrigan – Sean Christopher – Lia Scallon – Isadar – Spencer Brewer – Michael Dulin – Sherry Finzer – Jennifer DeFrayne – Pamela Jamian – Rupam Sarmah – Mythos – Lisa Downing – Peter Kater – Kristin Amarie & David Lanz – Denise Young – Anima – Merrill Collins – Bill Wren & Frank Ralls – Mark Pinkus – Tron Syversen – Louis Colaiannia – Michael Hoppé & Giuditta – Heidi Breyer – John Morgan – Joniel – Sensitive Heart – Peter Garnvik – Jerry Rockwell – 7and5 – J. M. Quintana Cámara – Peter Calandra – Vibeke Sonora – Dr. Sounds – Michael Joseph – Anaya Music – Elise Lebec – Antje Nagula – Lynn Yew Evers – Natascha Wilczek – Tajalli – Zamora – Luna Blanca – Sunsaria – Suzanne Doucet – Jon Richards – David Vito Gregoli.