April 28, 2009

Say, Darling, Say

When I saw the Fox Hunt the other day they played this tune. It sounds really familiar but I actually haven't heard any of the old timers do it in West Virginia. I'm sure they do, or have done it in the past, I just haven't heard it much.

Just the same, here's a really nice version. Great fiddling.

April 27, 2009

West Virginia All-Stars

Stumbled across this video today. It's kind of like an all-star compilation of some of West Virginia's best old-time players, including Dave Bing and John Morris. I'm sure there are others there that I just don't recognize. Always interesting to see these candid shots.

One of the tunes in there is a personal favorite, Girl I Left Behind Me.

April 26, 2009

French-Canadian Tunes

Came across these tunes today and loved them. There's a lot of great fiddle music out Quebec and these are two of them. I'm less familiar with this whole genre so I can't really offer any clever insights except to look more French-Canadian tunes up. Genticorum is perhaps the best modern recorded example of French-Canadian tradition. Enjoy.

April 24, 2009

Adam Hurt: New River Train

One of the best banjo players I've heard is Adam Hurt. Here he is with New River Train. I have an old-timey recording of this somewhere that I'll post later to compare. I like his playing better though because it's so clean and precise and he's not in a hurry.

April 19, 2009

Haste to the Wedding: Irish Pub Style

Here's a more fiddle-friendly version from an Irish pub. It comes complete with people in the background humming the melody. I'll post a scratchy old-time version of this tune tomorrow.

In the meantime... I found a slightly more professional version of the tune by the Corrs, who actually do play well. Remind too much of Wilson Phillips for comfort... don't know why, but it keeps me from being a fan. Nonetheless, here you go.

April 18, 2009

Ragtime Annie

Thank you sizefam4, great version of Ragtime Annie. See also sizefam1, 2, and 3 for alternate versions... ok that's a joke. But seriously, I like this tune.

April 17, 2009

Jimmy Johnson w/ commentary

Many I'm really grateful Old Time Music for posted a link to this guy originally. In this post he's talking about the Carpenter family, which I alluded to earlier in reference to Elsick's Farewell. Enjoy the tunes and the commentary.

By the way, I'm going to see the Fox Hunt here on Tuesday. That should be a good time. If I can I'll try to get a tune or two from there.

April 12, 2009

Who Broke the Lock: Little Brown Jug Band

This has become one of my favorite old-time bands. They have all kinds of stuff on YouTube, and their website is here: www.littlebrownjugband.com

I'm going to be in Lincoln this summer, where this was filmed, hopefully they'll be there again.

April 10, 2009

North Carolina Breakdown: West Virginia style

These guys are family friends. I stumbled across them on the internet the other day. In fact John Preston, the bass in the back there, played at my wedding. Dave Odell, the banjo, is one of the better musicians in West Virginia. Here they are with North Carolina Breakdown.

Mark Campbell

I have a feeling I'm going to go through a Mark Campbell phase now that I've run into his stuff on the internet. I discovered it via Old Time Music on Typepad.

This tune is Ducks on the Millpond. I like this video because it's really clear how they are bowing and easy to follow along.

Here's the MP3 for this tune if you'd like to download it, put it on your iPod or website or whatever.

Ducks on the Millpond MP3

April 07, 2009

Elsick's Farewell

This tune has a story behind that I'm not sure I'm sold on, but I haven't heard otherwise either. My father-in-law's family is from the county line between Kanawha County and Clay County, WV. One of his brother's told me that this tune originated during the time of the Civil War by a family near them that is still around, the Carpenter's (of Ernie Carpenter).

He told me that when brother Elsick Carpenter was going off to fight for the Union (I believe he told me it was the Union) one of his relative's wrote him this tune, and that's why it's called Elsick's Farewell.

He could have told me that just to mess with me, I don't know, but it seemed legit.

Or if you prefer, here's the fiddle version by the very talented John Morris, who I believe is from Clay County, WV.

Live Jam in Harper's Ferry

Surprisingly good sound for a band this big. You can hear the banjo really well.

April 05, 2009


I heard this tune today on WDVX, a local radio station that plays decent old-time sets on Sundays, and it was killing me because I'd heard it before but couldn't place it. The video above unfortunately cuts the playing short, but it's from Elkins, WV so I had to include.

If you're interested in learning the tune or hearing a longer version, click here to go to another video that has embedding disabled.

April 03, 2009

Walnut Gap and Ducks on a Millpond

Always nice to see the young kids learning the tunes.

Here's the same instructor playing Ducks on a Millpond, which is a very nice old-time tune.

April 02, 2009

Live from Purple Fiddle

This tune isn't especially old-time, but I kind of like it. Plus it's from the Purple Fiddle in Thomas WV.