Wednesday Night Jam Session Tune List

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Here’s a partial Tune List for the Wednesday night jam session. People ask me for one all the time. I compiled one back in July 2004, updated it in December 2006, and have started a new revision in July 2009.

These are tunes that are played moderately frequently. There are certainly tunes not on here that we play, and some of these tunes may not get played for weeks at a time. What we play depends on who shows up and on what we feel like playing that evening, and it changes over time as with any other group of people who play music together.


Big Bear (Em)

Bootlegger’s Reel (A)

Boule de Neige (G/D)

Bowing the Strings (A)

Constitution Breakdown (G)

Earl Mitton’s Breakdown (Bb)

French Reel (D)

Frenchie’s Reel (Bb)

Gaspé Reel (D)

Joys of Québec (A)

Liberty (D)

Lighthouse Keeper (A)

Little Judique (D/A)

Louis Cyr (G)

McPhael’s Breakdown (G)

Montréal Reel (G)

Ontario Swing (D)

Over the Waterfall (D)

Petit Minou (D)

Point au Pic (C/Am)

Reel Béatrice (Am/C)

Reel Boule de Neige (G/D)

Reel St. Paul (A)

Rimouski (G/C/F)

Rollaway Hornpipe (F/C)

Ronde des Voyageurs (Am/A)

Rouyn Reel (A)

Sawdust Breakdown (Q/E)

Silver Bells (D/G)

Snowflake Breakdown (D)

St. Anne’s Reel (D)

Vieux Moulin (Old Mill) (D)

Whistling Rufus (G)

Wobbly Goose (D)

York County (C/G)

24 Juin (Gm/G)


Jimmy’s Favorite (G)

Kittery Point JIg (A)

Murray River Jig (A)

My Dungannon Sweetheart (C)

Partie du Lancier (Joe Bouchard) (Am/C/F)

Scotch-Style Jig (Andy DeJarlis) (E)

Simon’s Jig (D)

Steamboat Quickstep (A)


Amelia (D)

Bandura Waltz (Am)

Black Velvet (C)

Calgary Fiddlers’  Waltz (C)

Claudette (D)

Farewell to Inez (G)

Finn Jenta (Gm)

French Club Waltz (G)

Frisco Waltz (F)

Moonlight on the Colorado (D)

Norwegian Waltz (G)

Rosebud of Allanvale (A)

Shepherd’s Wife (G)

Valcartier (Monahan’s) Waltz (D)

Valse de mon père (D)

Waltz of the Leaves (A)

Westphalia (G)

Polkas, Two-Steps & Marches

Alex & Maureen’s Two-Step (G)

Back to the Sugar Camp (D/G)

Coloured Aristocracy (G)

(Les) Fraises et les Framboises (G)

Gilles Roy (C)

Golden Boy (D)

Happy Acres Two-Step (D/A)

Honey Harbor Two-Step (A)

Jamie Allen (G)

Maple Leaf Two-Step (C)

Maple Sugar (A/E)

Marche de Quéteux Pomerleau (G)

Road to Boston (D)

Silver & Gold (D)

Sleeping Giant (D)

Tick Tock (F)

Waverly Two-Step (D)

Year-End Two-Step (G)

Square Dance Tunes

Chinese Breakdown (D)

Darling Nelly Grey (D)

Golden Slippers (D, G or A)

Just Because (G)

Mars nr. 51 eftir Svabo (D)

My Little Girl (G)

Ragtime Annie (D/G)

Redwing (G)

Snow Deer (D or G)

Year of the Jubilo (D)


Boys of Blue Hill (D)

Faded Love (D)

Galway Hornpipe (G)

Harvest Home (D)

I LIve Alone (Bb)

Off to California (G)

Old Spinning Wheel (D)

Learning the Tunes

Here are a couple thoughts on the topic of learning the tunes we play.

First of all: our repertoire is a bit different than the standard repertoire; I think it’s more interesting. Don’t worry if you don’t know all the tunes; we play a lot of the same tunes from month; you’ll learn them! Here are a few ideas about how to do it, starting with a couple things we don’t encourage people to do.

We do not make use of written music at the jam session; we also don’t “play from a book” which we’ve been asked about on occasion. Written music can be helpful as one component of a practice session (see below), but for the most part it doesn’t seem appropriate for a jam session. Confining one’s self to one book, no matter how good it is, seems unnecessarily limiting and I don’t think any of us would put up with that unless we could add to it every time we found a new tune we liked!

We do encourage people to learn by ear. There are various ways to do that.

  1. At the session, just try to pick up what you can! Try to figure out the key, what chords are most likely if you can (think I, IV & V), look for the bare outline, try to fill in more each time through.

  2. Bring a recording device so you can take the tunes home with you and practice them at home.  Record a few minutes of a tune so you can play along with it.

  3. Try to find and listen to recordings of the great fiddlers - not just the popular hot fiddlers of today, but the great fiddlers of the past who helped shape our tradition. That’s the best way to learn  what the music should really sound like.

  4. For that reason I hope to get back to listening to music during the break as we did for several years starting in the Fall.

  5. While learning by ear is best, I think all of us make use of written music too. There is written music on this site, and there’s lots more on the Internet. I plan to put up a page of links to web pages featuring written music at some point. Some links are already available in the abc notation section.

  6. Written music makes a great tool, especially in combination with listening, which helps you to fill out the details not included in the written music.