Updated September 16, 2021
Articles and Reviews by Ryan Thomson
• The Celtic Traveler, Oct 7, 2001.
• Scottish and Cape Breton classes at Festival of American Fiddle Tunes, 2001.
• More on playing violin left handed, and a link to my book on playing left handed.
• Origin of Jenny Lind Polka. (reel)
• Common Irish Session Tunes. Ryan Thomson's List
• 1970's Contra Dance Scene in Southern California .
• Fiddle techniques, for learning and playing, answers to questions. FAQ
• Hazards of a musician's life on the road.
• On memorization.
• Scottish fiddlers keep up the village traditions.
• Chicken Cheek Tweakers old time string band in San Diego.
• Country, square, and contra dances in Newmarket, New Hampshire
Focal Dystonia and other musician's disabilities:
• Possible solution to flute player's dilemma with dystonia.
Reviews of fiddling and folk music events:
As a tune collector/performer/teacher, I travel to many festivals and music and dance camps. I write reviews of events I've attended and post them here. Some of these reviews have been or will be published in other printed folk or fiddling publications. There are many events for which I have not yet written reviews, and I will gradually add them to this page as they are finished.
• Black Creek Fiddler's Reunion, Altamont, New York, 2002.
• North American Folk Music and Dance Alliance annual meeting, 2002.
• Fiddleheads String Band Camp, New Hampshire, 2001.
• Rocky Mountain Fiddle Camp, Colorado, 2001.
• Festival of American Fiddle Tunes 1996, Port Townsend, Washington.
• Festival of American Fiddle Tunes 1997, Port Townsend, Washington.
• Festival of American Fiddle Tunes 2001, Port Townsend, Washington.
• Augusta Heritage Center Irish Week, Elkins, West Virginia, 1998.
• Augusta Heritage Center Irish Week, Elkins, West Virginia, 1999.
• Augusta Heritage Center Irish and French Canadian Week, 2001.
• Stonehill College Irish Festival, 2000.
• Wheatland Folk Festival, Remus, Michigan, 1997.
• Northumbrian Piper's Convention. August, 1997.
• Dance Grand Rapids Irish Ceili, 1997.
• Folk Project Fall Festival, Northwest New Jersey, 1997.
• "Clifftop," The Eighth Annual Appalachian String Band Music Festival, 1997.
• Heritage Dance Festival, Plymouth Meeting (Philadelphia area), 1997.
• Apple Hill Center for Chamber Music, Nelson, New Hampshire,1996.
• Balance and Swim, West Virginia.
• California Traditional Music Society, music camp(CTMS) Malibou, California
• Eisteddfod International Folk Festival, North Dartmouth, Massachusetts, 1996.
• Lark in the Morning Music Celebration, Mendocino, California, 1996.
• New England Folk Festival (NEFFA).
• Northeastern Music and Dance Festival, NOMAD, Newtown, CT, 1996.
• Philadelphia Folk Song Society Fall Fling, Green Lane, Pennsylvania, 1996.
• Green Linnet 3rd Irish Music and Dance Weekend, Monticello, NY, 1995.
• Mark O'Connor Fiddle Camp, Tennessee, 1994.
• Squeeze In, Washington, Massachusetts.
• Great Bay Folklife Festival, Newmarket, New Hampshire, 1990-1991.
Memorable musical experiences
• Crossing the Sierra range by backpack with mandolin and pennywhistle.
• Ode to a Cattle Car, a 4th of July parade with the Boogaloo Swamis.
• My first "folk" gig, a trip up the long highway.
• Cherries Jubilee, or: a Hot Time in the Old Town Tonight.
• Calling a dance for the Ted Kennedy Jr. wedding, on Block Island.
• Opening for Ricky Skaggs at the Augusta Civic Center in Maine.
• Dodging a Brahma Bull at a Seagrams 7 gig, A working musician's life on the road.
• The last concert at Old Faithful Geyser in Yellowstone National Park.
• Pennies From Heaven, or: How to Make Money Playing the Accordion.
• Honk if you like our music!, a concert in Southbridge, Massachusetts.
• Hazards of life on the Road of a traveling band, a car crash.
• Mozart and Poison Ivy. If they'll pay, we'll play!
• Playing in a full time Nashville band Ryan tours with Baked Apple band
• Playing in Hank Thompson’s back up band in Maine.
Marching, marching, and more marching
For some reason or other, promoters often envision marching musicians as a way to liven up an event. Sometimes this is effective, sometimes not. Since I missed out having a high school marching band experience, I've listed some other types of interesting musical marches I've participated in:
Recording and Publication Reviews:
• Crystal Clear, solo violin by Jerry Holland - CD review.
• Fiddler's Bid Hamnataing - CD review.
• Patty Furlong - Traditional Irish Music on Button Accordion - CD review.
• J P Cormier Heart and Soul - CD review.
• McKrells, This Past Year - CD review.
• Kevin Burke in Concert - CD review.
• Concertina and Squeezebox - publication review.
• Claude Williams John Stewart - Jazz Violin and Guitar Duets - tape review.
• Charles Mann "Walk of Life," contemporary cajun - Tape/CD review.
• Cowboy Celtic, by David Wilkie and the McDades - tape/CD review.
• Dances frae the North Vols. 1 & 2, Scottish - tape review.
• Note By Note, A Guide to Concert Production - book review.
• Zydeco, Blues and Boogie - CD review.
• The Lundberg Brothers - Joined at the Ear - CD review.
• Eileen Ivers, Crossing the Bridge - CD review.
• Jacqueline Schwab - Mad Robin, piano - CD review.
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