Banjo Hangout Logo
Banjo Hangout Logo

Premier Sponsors

284
Banjo Lovers Online


Discussion Forum

Want to hide these Google ads? Join the Players Union!

 All Forums
 Playing the Banjo
 Playing Advice: Clawhammer and Old-Time Styles
 ARCHIVED TOPIC: TOTW 4.12.13: Granny Went to Meeting With Her Old Shoes On


Please note this is an archived topic, so it is locked and unable to be replied to. You may, however, start a new topic and refer to this topic with a link: http://www.banjohangout.org/archive/260580

MileStretch - Posted - 04/11/2013:  16:39:46


Granny went to meeting with her old shoes on,

She came back with a new pair on.


 


My apologies--I'm posting this a few hours early due to harsh weather coming my way and a busy schedule tomorrow.


 


This week's TOTW, "Granny Went To Meeting With Her Old Shoes On," is a fairly obscure D fiddle tune featured in Jeff Todd Titon's Old-Time Kentucky Fiddle Tunes.


 


The notation in Titon's book is transcribed from Travis Wells' mid-70s field recording of Estill County fiddler Lella Todd. Titon writes, "[a]pparently this was a local tune, known to Todd and her neighboring musicians." Titon notes that the words italicized above came from Mr. and Mrs. Vernon Judd.


 


Recordings:




  • Billy Don Stamper, Rounder 0394

  • Mr & Mrs. Vernon Judd, New World 226


          "The present selection, from the bluegrass region of Kentucky, is more relaxed in tempo and represents a typical 'banjo tune,' a simply developed melody with nonsensical words. Mr. and Mrs. Judd are conservative farmers of the old school—they still cook by a wood stove and plow with a team of mules. In spite of this they are quite prosperous, and when Mr. Judd decided he wanted to take up the banjo again after many years of hard farming, he was able to purchase the flashiest, most expensive bluegrass banjo on the market. Nevertheless, he still plays only the tunes he learned as a young boy just after the turn of the century" (excerpt of liner notes from That's My Rabbit, My Dog Caught It/Traditional Southern Instrumental Styles, New World Records).




  • Earl Thomas, Kentucky Old-Time Mountain Banjo (in this version the A and B parts are switched from the Todd version). Here's a field recording of Thomas hosted by the Digital Library of Appalachia: dla.acaweb.org/cdm/singleitem/...457/rec/1




I found no recordings on the Hangout.


 


This YouTube video is fun, and from what I can tell is kind of similar to the Todd version (sorry, YouTube user mcmule2007, I still really enjoy your video): youtube.com/watch?v=GnXVGxYUSWQ


 


The mandolin version by mcmule2007 above was my first exposure to the tune, followed by the Thomas version (Kentucky Old-Time Mountain Banjo is a great album), and finally I did my darnedest to suss out the notation of Todd's rendition in Titon's book. My humble contribution below is an amalgamation of all three, with an A chord thrown in on to lengthen the B part.


 


I await your terrific renditions of this fun fiddle tune.


 



Granny Went to Meeting With Her Old Shoes On

   

Oldpiper - Posted - 04/11/2013:  16:47:17


That's a lively, fun tune. Both your rendition and Earl Thomas' are great.

J-Walk - Posted - 04/11/2013:  17:17:31


That's one of those great tunes that a fiddle can start out, and everyone in the group will be playing along almost perfectly after 1 minute. Predictable, but those are often the best kind.



I have two recordings of the tune (both by Earl Thomas), but I'd never paid attention to it. Thanks for bringing it to my attention


cherbr - Posted - 04/12/2013:  05:26:24


What a great tune to listen to first thing this morning! You did a great job arranging and playing it.


JanetB - Posted - 04/12/2013:  06:31:12


Yes, great job, Ryan!  Fun for this old granny to play along with Earl Thomas, Jr.  I'm doing it in double C and really like the A minor tone in that version.  It's also #801 on the Slippery Hill website.




Granny Went to Meeting

   

vrteach - Posted - 04/12/2013:  07:24:33


Nice tune, great title, and I really like your banjo version.



It reminds me of an Illinois Tune called "Dog Treed A Possum Up a White Oak Tree"



youtube.com/watch?v=WN3O-JdLjRk



and a version that is faster (and moister):



youtube.com/watch?v=mWSykPR4viE



Edited by - vrteach on 04/12/2013 07:29:24

SCclawman - Posted - 04/12/2013:  07:56:11


 



Ryan,



Thanks for introducing me to this fantastic tune. Lovely melody, and really really nice playing. I love everything about this song. The name, the playing, the melody. Perfect!



Sounds like a fun song to play and like JWalk said, relatively easy to pick up.



Great choice for TOTW. Really enjoyed it.



 


Kitt - Posted - 04/12/2013:  08:08:44


quote:

Originally posted by JanetB

 

It's also #801 on the Slippery Hill website.







Could you leave the link, Janet, for the Slippery Hill website? I found 'a' Slippery Hill with fiddle tune recordings but I don't think I've found the whole fandangle, because I don't see #'s of tunes, such as #801, or any other numbers.


slc - Posted - 04/12/2013:  08:11:21


Lovely! And very nicely played - I'm so going to look into this one. I bet it'd make a great session tune also.


gailg64 - Posted - 04/12/2013:  08:17:08


Great tune, in all its variations, and especially satisfying to have a TOW tune that's banjo-istic,  rather than a fiddle tune retrofitted for banjo. Not that there's anything wrong with that, but it's a fine & appropriate thing here ont he Banjo Hangout to occasionally have tunes here that were born on the banjo. It holds up nicely solo on either instrument,  & makes a dandy banjo-fiddle duo.



The tune is very close to Ida Red/Down the Road, found all over the upper south under many names. It has many earmarks of African ancestry. Tommy Jarrell played it as Ida Red, as did Gaither Carlton (Down the Road).



There's an article by Anna Roberts-Gevalt on Lella Todd in a recent Old-TIme Herald.



GG


JanetB - Posted - 04/12/2013:  12:44:04


Here's the link to the tune by Earl Thomas, Jr. in the Slippery Hill website.  I believe it's the same recording as the link above in the Digital Library site.



slippery-hill.com/M-K/GDAE/D/G...eting.mp3


ramjo - Posted - 04/12/2013:  15:40:54


quote:

Originally posted by gailg64

 

Great tune, in all its variations, and especially satisfying to have a TOW tune that's banjo-istic,  rather than a fiddle tune retrofitted for banjo. Not that there's anything wrong with that, but it's a fine & appropriate thing here ont he Banjo Hangout to occasionally have tunes here that were born on the banjo. It holds up nicely solo on either instrument,  & makes a dandy banjo-fiddle duo.




The tune is very close to Ida Red/Down the Road, found all over the upper south under many names. It has many earmarks of African ancestry. Tommy Jarrell played it as Ida Red, as did Gaither Carlton (Down the Road).




There's an article by Anna Roberts-Gevalt on Lella Todd in a recent Old-TIme Herald.




GG







Heeeeeeer's Tommy:



 


Paul S - Posted - 04/12/2013:  16:40:42


MileStretch,



Great choice for TOTW. I have never heard of the tune before, I love the sound of it and ounce I figured out what tuning you played it in, double C in the key of D I was playing along with you in no time. It's kind of like "Walking in the Parlor", easy to pick up and fun to play.



Thanks,



Paul


MileStretch - Posted - 04/12/2013:  17:18:01


I'm delighted to see folks enjoying this week's tune. It's great to share the music, ain't it?



Janet, as always, wonderfully and beautifully played! Gotta learn Hickory Leaf now, thanks to you laugh



Can't wait to hear other versions of GWtM!


Brooklynbanjoboy - Posted - 04/13/2013:  03:10:17


Here’s what I found on the Slippery Hill Website (slippery-hill.com/) from the book Old-Time Kentucky Fiddle Tunes by Jeff Todd Titon



slippery-hill.com/Titon/GrannyWent.mp3



 



Edited by - Brooklynbanjoboy on 04/13/2013 03:17:33

JanetB - Posted - 04/14/2013:  08:56:54


Thanks for the above link, Lew.  I'd forgotten that the Slippery Hill website has much more than the 1,404 tune of the Millener Koken collection, and that I can listen to the Jeffrey Titon tunes of his Kentucky fiddle tune book at that site, as well as other collections.  I believe Slippery Hill is worth donating to--an incredible resource.



By the way, perhaps a silly question, but how could Granny get new shoes at a meeting, as stated in the lyrics at the top of this TOTW?  I'm assuming this meeting is a church revival.  I suppose a lot of social and business events take place there, but I've never been to one.  My husband's great-grandparents were Holiness preachers and published a book about their activities, but I don't know much about meetings.  Alan Lomax did recordings at camp meetings, but I haven't heard them yet.  Perhaps others here are more familiar with what goes on at such meetings.


Brooklynbanjoboy - Posted - 04/14/2013:  14:51:45


BHO friends,



I’m sort of coming late to the TOTW drill.  But now that I’ve fully retired – meaning now that I’ve abandoned the world of post-retirement “consulting” and that sort of stuff – I have more time to look at these great presentations by BHO friends and colleagues, and to try my hand at the tunes. 



The TOTW is a good way or organizing my banjo playing goals, especially since I’ve not yet connected with like-minded OT players where I’m living now. 



I hope my efforts at taking a crack at these tunes will be understood as my effort to shift over to a banjo-dominated retirement, and that these postings will stand as an invitation to BHO friends to tell me where I’m going off course. 



Thanks for letting me insinuate my way into this TOTW community.  Give me a time to wet my feet and maybe I’ll take a stab at presenting a tune down the line.



In the meantime, here’s my modest attempt at capturing the “Granny” tune:



youtube.com/watch?v=GFaCsqjZ1BQ



V/R,



 



Lew


MileStretch - Posted - 04/14/2013:  19:28:37


Janet, the name of the tune and the lyrics brought out the literature student in me. My best stab at an interpretation comes from the saying, "as comfortable as an old shoe." Perhaps Granny came home from church with a stricter stance on an issue. Maybe it was a temperance sermon!



Lew, what a wonderful rendition! Thanks for sharing.


Brooklynbanjoboy - Posted - 04/15/2013:  03:26:24


Ryan,



Nice of you to say that.  I was guided by Janet's fine playing.



Janet,



Interesting effort to parse those lyrics.



Have a great banjo day,



Lew



 


JanetB - Posted - 04/15/2013:  06:38:08


Thanks for the better interpretation, Ryan, kind of like the song "Two Coats" sung by Ralph Stanley.



Here's a simple tab.  The syncopated part is a little tricky if you're not used to holding the slurred notes.  Adam Hurt calls these "ghost strokes."  You pretend you're going to play the downbeat and get your thumb in position, then only play the thumb.  It's why I have such a percussive sound in my MP3.  My banjo has really low action and my thumb would hit the head when I was doing the "ghost stroke."




Granny Went to Meeting tab

   

Paul S - Posted - 04/15/2013:  16:55:50


Janet,  thanks for the tab and great playing, is the ghost stroke you referred to the same as an M-skip?



 



Paul


JanetB - Posted - 04/15/2013:  17:40:44


Yes, Paul, I think the "ghost stroke" is the same as an M-skip.  Here's an archived discussion of it:  banjohangout.org/archive/110956



Another interesting stroke that can be used is a Galax lick at the beginning of the B part, with an open 3rd and 2nd string and a 5th fretted first string..


Mtngoat - Posted - 04/16/2013:  15:25:49


Here's something I recorded a few years ago in Kentucky.  Donnie Rogers doing the vocal work with the rest of the KY Clodhoppers.  County Sales has their latest CD.



 



 




Granny Went to Meeting

   

Brooklynbanjoboy - Posted - 04/16/2013:  16:46:16


Nicely done, Mtn Goat


Mtngoat - Posted - 04/16/2013:  18:17:46


It's not me.  This is a recording of the Kentucky Clodhoppers consisting of Don Rogers, Billy Stamper, Earl Thomas, and John Harrod.


Brooklynbanjoboy - Posted - 04/17/2013:  02:25:03


My bad.


Hangout Network Help

View All Topics  |  View Categories

0.140625