The Well Tuned Piano

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5.0 average, based on 1 reviews


Product Information

The Well Tuned Piano
Musician - Don Bartlett, Piano


A Bonnie Lassie (or Any Good Jig) (8x32J)
Petronella (6x32R)
Miss Ogilvie’s Fancy (8x32S)
The Express (8x40J)
Links o’ Forth (or Any Good Hornpipe) (8x32R)
The Delta Borderers’ 25th (3x32S)
Ruth’s Return to Glen Ravine (or Any Good Jig) (8x32J)
The Friday Night Musician (8x32R)
Stuttgart Strathspey (3 couple set) (6x32S)
Links with St. Petersburg (8x32J)
The Tri-Mariner (8x32R)
Any Good Strathspey (St. Anne’s Cathedral) (8x32S)
Any Good Jig (Miss Ali Bartlett) (8x32J)
Smiling Lila (8x32R)
The Jappy Farewell Waltz (144W)



  1. A Bonnie Lassie (or Any Good Jig) (8x32J)

  2. Petronella (6x32R)

  3. Miss Ogilvie’s Fancy (8x32S) (2x64S)

  4. The Express (8x40J)

  5. Links o’ Forth (or Any Good Hornpipe) (8x32R)

  6. The Delta Borderers’ 25th (3x32S)

  7. Ruth’s Return to Glen Ravine (or Any Good Jig) (8x32J)

  8. The Friday Night Musician (8x32R)

  9. Stuttgart Strathspey (3 couple set) (6x32S)

  10. Links with St. Petersburg (8x32J)

  11. The Tri-Mariner (8x32R)

  12. Any Good Strathspey (St. Anne’s Cathedral) (8x32S)

  13. Any Good Jig (Miss Ali Bartlett) (8x32J)

  14. Smiling Lila (8x32R)

  15. The Jappy Farewell Waltz (144W)



Product CodeDBWTP
ManufacturerDon Bartlett

Customer Reviews

Average Rating: 5

The Well Tuned Piano by Don Bartlett

I have long been a fan of solo piano for dancing, and I have enjoyed the band recordings of Don Bartlett and the Scotians since the ‘70s. So, it was with pleasure I gave some serious listening and dance experience to the new solo piano recording by Mr Bartlett. The Scotian band recordings from 1978 and 1979 were remarkable for the clarity and punch of the recordings; instruments were clear and the overall sound had real punch to it, with the accordions front and center. Similarly here, one listens and it is like sitting at the piano yourself, every note is clear and present. The playing is superb. Mr Bartlett’s experience of playing for dance since 1968 shows up here in playing which manages to be both steady as a rock, interesting, and exciting. Mr Bartlett’s fingers fly and he clearly enjoys tunes that let him ‘show off,’ like his set for the Tri-Mariner and his own Smiling Lila. The jigs have the perfect Scottish feel of the first note of a bar being that wee bit held on to. The strathspeys are driving and joys to dance to, even when lyrical. Ornaments are sometimes reminiscent of piping ornaments but when the tune is pianistic it is a delight, as in Miss Ogilvie’s Fancy. My class in San Francisco enjoyed dancing to several of the tracks. Thirty-one of the tunes are old trad tunes dating from 1735 to 1900 (with two more wandering in from the mid-20th century). Many of these old tunes have been rarely recorded and many are making their SCD debut here. They are excellent and distinctive tunes and deserve wider acquaintance. The other eighteen tunes were composed by Mr Bartlett from 1968 to 2019 and are available from the composer. Some sets are all one vintage or the other, but some are mélanges. In every case they are well suited to each other, and to the dances (as far as I could judge). The harmonizations of the tunes have occasional characteristic ‘tweaks’ from the usual (sometimes changing a note in the melody as well). Generally, these changes serve to drive from one tune into the next and work well to drive the dancing. The dances are a mixture of old traditional dances, new dances published by the RSCDS, and dances by Canadian devisors, including Mr Bartlett (directions for the unfamiliar dances are included in the CD). Tracks ‘AGS’ and ‘AGJ’ provide music for Any Good Strathspey’ and ‘Any Good Jig.’ If I had to choose a favorite track it might be AGS. My one disappointment in the recording is that the two two-couple dances are only played 6 times through. But then I realized the recording is 78 minutes long and there was simply not room for another 8x32 Strathspey (CD capacity is only 80 minutes). Classes are getting smaller and so good recordings that go through only six times will doubtless prove useful. I am delighted to have and to recommend The Well Tuned Piano. Bruce Herbold
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