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 ARCHIVED TOPIC: Train On The Island

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Jim Yates - Posted - 04/19/2015:  15:15:59

I've heard a tune sung with words and called Train On The Island, but it has another name when it's played as an instrumental fiddle tune.  What is that name?

Edited by - Lynne on 04/19/2015 15:32:04

UncleClawhammer - Posted - 04/19/2015:  15:26:46

I don't think this is the right answer but some people sing Train on the Island to the tune of June Apple.

Grey Dog - Posted - 04/19/2015:  15:42:14

Bruce Molsky couples "Train on the Island" (with lyrics) with "Golden Chain Tree" (Instrumental). They pair well, but I don't think that they are that well-paired as to be the same tune....Hmmm. Curious now, m'self.


(On the Bruce Molsky CD with Big Hoedown)

Edited by - Grey Dog on 04/19/2015 15:43:35

jonredmond - Posted - 04/19/2015:  16:36:13

Richie Stearns Does a tune called Train on the Island on his "Missing"  Album

Jim Yates - Posted - 04/19/2015:  17:42:14

Thanks Matthew.  That's the tune I was looking for.  I learned it from a Cathy Fink & Duck Donald record and Cathy played June Apple while Duck sang Train On The Island.

BrendanD - Posted - 04/20/2015:  02:34:31

There are several melodic variants of Train On The Island, but I don't know that I've ever heard it sung to the tune of June Apple. The melody that Bruce Molsky uses comes from the late Luther Davis of the Galax, VA area; Bruce sets it in the key of G, but Luther played it in A. Here's a short recording I made in 1979 of Luther (at age 91) playing Train On The Island:

Train On The Island

UncleClawhammer - Posted - 04/20/2015:  02:52:03

The New Lost City Ramblers recorded it to the tune of June Apple. I have never cared for it that way. My favorite version is from the Harry Smith anthology, JP Nester and Norman Edwards. OCMS does it pretty good, too.

oldwoodchuckb - Posted - 04/20/2015:  03:43:58

JP Nestor's version Of Train On The Island sounds "real" to me, whereas most sound really artificial - especially Bruce Molsky's inane folky version - an arrangement The Brothers Four would have rejected for having far too much Sugar.

Grey Dog - Posted - 04/20/2015:  06:08:54

Just for clarification: "Train on the Island" and "June Apple" may mesh well together in such an overlaid fashion, but they definitely aren't the same tune in terms of song vs. tune.

Jimmy Sutton - Posted - 04/20/2015:  06:58:22

Sorry if this is nitpicking but the "original" ? recording was in 1927 by J P Nestor and "Uncle" Norman Edmonds NOT Edwards. They were two of the people recorded in the mammoth 1927 sessions carried out by Ralph Peer.
There is a version played by Norman Edmonds' grandson Jimmy Edmonds on You Tube as a member of the Four Luthiers, caught on camera in London last year.
The tunes June Apple and Train on the Island are definitely not the same but a number of people sing the June Apple words to Train on the Island, I have no idea why. I guess we have to put it down to the folk process.

Jimmy Sutton - Posted - 04/20/2015:  07:06:33

Re my post above that should read Virginia Luthiers NOT Four Luthiers. Here's the link address;

UncleClawhammer - Posted - 04/20/2015:  11:00:14

It is nitpicking, but it's also exactly the kind of thing I would do, so cheers.

ceemonster - Posted - 04/24/2015:  23:16:33

i love the version by the late Pat Dunford.

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