Midnight on the Water

Posted on March 10, 2007, under general.

After finally figuring out how to actually use Garageband, a USB to dual-XLR mixer and my two Mics, I’ve managed to get some basic stuff recorded again. I’ll add them to my music section as I go, but first up is a great Texas fiddle tune called Midnight on the Water.

This is an old Texas fiddle tune that I learned originally about 12 years ago from Liam “Bal” Kennedy. I’ve changed it around a bit, so that the chord progression resolves to a G, and I very very often refer to it mistakenly as “Moonlight on the River”. I’ve recorded it here using Garageband on my Mac. There are better combinations of instrument than guitar on guitar for this sort of thing, but I really like the deceptive simplicity of the tune. It’s actually pretty complex to play right, and I really like playing it. It’s easy to imagine boats sailing calmly in the darkness, gently meandering down-stream.

direct mp3 link.

The backing was recorded first, in regular concert tuning, and the melody is played using the drop-D tuning, though the dropped-D is used only once (bonus points if you can spot where).

8 Replies to "Midnight on the Water"


Fergus  on March 10, 2007

Hello Colm. I’m getting into the workings of Garageband myself and am using a midi keyboard. Lovely recording you made.


Lynne  on March 12, 2007

That is beautiful.


Marcel  on March 26, 2007


Sorry if I ask on this way. But I just tried to get the Beta of Joost! Can you send me an invitation?

Otherwise I would’t be able to subscribe!

Thank you and see you on joost.com!!

Marcel, Switzerland, now in Tokyo


Patrick  on March 29, 2007

Sweet work. Has Daniel ever sent you the work we did with GarageBand?


Samuel Bonanno  on April 2, 2007

Aloha Colm,

I am listening to you sounds sweet. I operate a music store on Kauai Hawaii. I cancelled my cable with the cable company over three years ago because they are monopololistic and rude. I have been waiting for this day for a long time (perhaps more than most). I would like to be able to Joost with you all and if you send me a token I will mail you a genuine Hawaiian ukulele at my expense. after hearing your guitar playing and tasty licks I think you would enjoy playing the ukulele.

Mahalo nui loa



Samuel Bonanno  on April 3, 2007

Regarding Bonus points…the dropped D was used in the intro.

This is our kine music bradda…sweet guitars and kekaha nights.



Paul Wilkinson  on April 9, 2007

Well, I can’t send a uke but I can give a bit of sound advice in the hope of a joost invite… You play really well and I think you’re right with the guitar on guitar thing – I would compress the lead guitar more and give it a more woody sound by adding in some gentle boost in the 800 – 5k range and then just a little bit of echoverb to make it sparkle. Try panning the two tracks out more to give a sense of space in the mix and maybe it will sound even better…

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