Teaching & Workshops

Drawing from 15 years of teaching experience, Tim offers one-on-one lessons in fiddle, violin, viola, and guitar, as well as group workshops in fiddle, guitar, and improvisation at music camps. With a private studio of in-person students in Ithaca, NY, Tim also teaches online.

Tim’s teaching style aims to develop well-rounded musicianship: learning by ear as well as reading music, building stylistically-appropriate musical vocabulary, developing good technique, as well as practicing efficiently and effectively.

A remarkably versatile fiddler, Tim is comfortable teaching style and repertoire from the Irish-American, New England, and Upstate New York traditions. As a guitarist, he specializes in Celtic music and is comfortable teaching in standard, drop-D, and DADGAD tunings.

Tim currently serves as the String Ensembles teacher at the Ithaca Waldorf School and as a Visiting Lecturer in violin at Cornell University. He regularly teaches at the Kanack School Fiddle Camp, and has taught at Ashokan Northern Week and the Ithaca Suzuki Institute.

Private Lessons

Tim Ball offers private lessons in American and Irish fiddle styles, classical violin, Celtic guitar, and improvisation.

Contact Tim to schedule a consultation.

More details

In-person lessons are available in Ithaca, NY and Newfield, NY.

Online lessons are available via Zoom – other platforms may work as well if needed.

As of January 2021, rates for new students are as follows:

$25/30 minute lesson
$35/45 minute lesson
$45/60 minute lesson

Ithaca Irish Sessions Tunes List

These sets of Irish fiddle tunes are drawn from the repertoire of the long-running Ithaca, NY session led by the band Traonach.

Many of these tunes are common throughout the Irish-tune-playing world. Some of these sets are common practice in other places too; some of them really aren’t – i.e., they “break up” sets that are very common outside of Ithaca.


Jerry’s Beaver Hat/The Lilting Fisherman
Willie Coleman’s/Rakes of Kildare/Shandon Bells
Tatter Jack Walsh/The Cook in the Kitchen
Garret Barry’s/Brian O’Lynn/The Humours of Ballyloughlin
The Rambling Pitchfork/The Geese in the Bog/Jimmy Ward’s Favorite
Banish Misfortune/The Lark in the Morning
The Frost is All Over/Haste to the Wedding/Bill Harte’s
Leg of the Duck/The Irishman’s Heart to the Ladies/The Blackthorn Stick
Jackie Roche’s Favorite/The Dusty Windowsill/The Mouse in the Mug
The Banks of Lough Gowna/The Boys of Tandragee/The Scotsman over the Border
The Humors of Ennistymon/Barrel Rafferty’s
The Haunted House/The Old Flail/Jackson’s
Old Hag You Have Killed Me/Fraher’s
Tobin’s Favorite/The Rose in the Heather/The Cliffs of Moher
The Blarney Pilgrim/The Battering Ram/The Mooncoin
The Fairhaired Boy/Old Man Dillon’s/Sliabh Russell
The Nightingale/The Maid in the Meadow/Sauders’
The Roaring Barmaid/Sliabh Russell/Cathal McConnell’s
Up Sligo/The Trip to Sligo/The Tar Road to Sligo


The Sally Gardens/The Silver Spear/The Merry Blacksmith
The Green Fields of Rossbeigh/The Glen of Aherlow
Castle Kelley/Humours of Ballyconnell
Jackie Coleman/The Earl’s Chair/Toss the Feathers (Em)
The Mountain Road/Drowsy Maggie/The Morning Dew
The Killarney Boys of Pleasure/Pigeon on a Gate/The Piper’s Despair
Tommy Coen’s Memories/Love at the Endings/The Cup of Tea
Brendan Coffey’s/The Virginia Reel
Poor But Happy at 53/The Musical Priest/The Scholar
The Hare’s Paw/The Otter’s Holt/The Eel in the Sink (The Blackthorn)
Ships are Sailing/The Longford Collector/The Old Copper Plate
Farewell to Erin/The Foxhunter’s (in A)
Paddy Fahey’s (Dm)/The Lads of Laois/Farrel O’Gara
The Tarbolton/Lucy Campbell’s
The Ashplant (D)/Paddy Taylor’s/The Torn Jacket
The Ashplant (Em)/Dunmore Lasses
Drag Her Round the Road/Tom’s Tune
Tuttle’s/Julia Delaney
Glen Allen/Lady Anne Montgomery/The Gravel Walks
Imelda Roland’s/Sheehan’s/The Abbey Reel
Bonnie Kate/The Mason’s Apron/The Boys of the Lough/The Earl of Leinster
The Jug of Punch/The Concert Reel
Sporting Paddy/The Old Bush
Macintosh John/Christmas Eve/The Congress Reel
The Doon Reel/The Knotted Cord/The High Reel
Farewell to Ireland/Miss McLeod’s/The Drunken Landlady
The Humours of Tulla/The Dublin Reel (G)/Jenny’s Chickens
The Wind that Shakes the Barley/Rolling in the Ryegrass/Green Grow the Rushes
The Four Courts/Creig’s Pipes/The Jolly Tinker
My Love is in America/The Green Fields of America/The Star of Munster
The Maid Behind the Bar/The Wise Maid/The Sligo Maid
Speed the Plow (D)/The Banshee/Cooley’s
The Trip to Durrow/The Peeler’s Jacket
The Yellow Tinker/The Golden Keyboard/Father Kelly’s


Tim Ball compiled this list in 2021 based on recollections from playing at the session weekly over the period from 2010-2020. Many others contributed recollections as well, most particularly John Wobus.

Regulars at the session during this time include members of Traonach – Mark Bickford, Scott Whitham, Ed McGowan, Cole Gruberth, Tim Ball, and Harry Lawless – as well as John Wobus, Michael Roddy, Ellie Goud, Sarah Gerk, Jennifer DeLapp-Birkett, Deb Justice, Eamon Kelly, and many others.

Many of these sets go back much farther than 2010 – thanks are also due to others from times past such as John Byrne, Joel Cowan, Chris Ryan, Pat Reynolds, Kara Doyle, Lousia Bennion, and Brenna O’Toole.