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 Playing Advice: Clawhammer and Old-Time Styles
 ARCHIVED TOPIC: TOTW 4/22/2011 : Done Gone (2 parts)

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natepope - Posted - 04/23/2011:  00:20:03

Hey all,

Although I haven't really posted here before, I've been reading the TOTW here for a couple years and figured it was time to contribute.

'Done Gone' is a Texas fiddle tune usually played in Bb (sometimes C or A).  There two or three parts depending on the version and the context.  I find Bb an interesting key for both the fiddle and banjo, and I particularly love the theatricality of this tune when it switches to minor.

According to legend (quoting the Fiddler's Companion), Done Gone was written as "...[Matt] Brown was trying to hitch a ride after being stranded some twenty‑eight miles outside of Amarillo; he attempted to flag down one car which passed him, and while waiting for another he composed 'Done Gone.' If the story is true it must have been in the early days of the automobile, for Brown died in 1915 ..."  There is an unrelated tune of a similar name that is a Charleston-sounding fiddle rag.

Here is my arrangement, and a sloppy">recording to accompany it.  I learned the tune in the context of contra dances, with two parts, but ending on the A part.  The tuning I use is gFBbDF, which is open-G capoed at the third fret (with the drone not capoed).  


two 'definitive' versions,

by Eck Robertson, three parts in Bb

by Clyde Davenport
, three parts in C

These are from a website maintained by Larry Warren, just to give credit where credit is due.  I'm sure there are many more recordings out there, in both old-time and bluegrass styles.">">">cqyqJAnRTYw

A (contra?) arrangement with piano and fiddle

Other transcriptions:

Lyle Konigsberg has a great clawhammer arrangement in open-C (tuned down a whole step) with a recording on his website [edit - correct link].

Ken Perlman has a clawhammer version (I think he credits John Burke with the arrangement?) in "Clawhammer Style Banjo"

Fiddle transcriptions can be found in the Fiddlers' Fakebook and the Portland Collection.  

Or the ABC can be found here and converted with this tool.



Edited by - natepope on 04/24/2011 11:48:01

derwood400 - Posted - 04/23/2011:  05:19:26

Nice tune! And well played too Nate.  I listened to the recording you made and your playing really reminds me of Ken Perlman's playing.  

hendrid - Posted - 04/23/2011:  06:59:27

The sheet music is also in Fiddlers Fakebook in Bflat A part and Gm it says B part though Fiddlers Companion says GAeolian for the B part.  The UK site shows a high A part repeated, a high B part then a low B part.  Fiddlers Fakebook shows a high A part repeated and a high B part repeated with C part being a return to the A part.  Also sizefam4 has a slow fiddle fingering lesson on  Don

Edited by - hendrid on 04/23/2011 07:02:42

taddr - Posted - 04/23/2011:  08:49:40

Great tune! Your recording us quite nice. Having the guitar far in the background makes it quite dreamy. Cheers, Thanks.

LyleK - Posted - 04/24/2011:  04:13:41


Originally posted by natepope

Lyle Konigsberg has a great clawhammer arrangement in double-C (tuned down a whole step) with a recording on his website.

That website should have mostly "done gone" by now.  The previous ISP was bought-out, so that the current website is:  I had thought that the old site would vanish, but instead it is stuck in permanent purgatory.  There's now a small cadre of tabs at the current website in Bb (f Bb F Bb D is what I use, which is "open C" down a step).

I've attached the "Done Gone" *.mp3 and tab below (*.tef file in the BHO tabs).  Interesting that you mention "Charleston" type rag, as at least the first part of "Done Gone" is very similar to the first part of "Charleston No. 1."  Neither tune seems to get played very much.  Too bad.  They are both great tunes.  I very much enjoyed the *.mp3 you recorded/posted.

Edited by - LyleK on 04/24/2011 04:27:36

Done Gone tab

Done Gone

natepope - Posted - 04/24/2011:  11:50:33


That website should have mostly "done gone" by now.  The previous ISP was bought-out, so that the current website is:


Thanks, Lyle.  I've corrected the link in the original post.



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