Banjo Hangout Logo
Banjo Hangout Logo

Premier Sponsors

373
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 (OT) 3 June 2016: Possum on a Rail


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/319059

Zischkale - Posted - 06/02/2016:  21:17:52


Came across this one when listening to a recording of Bigfoot jamming at Clifftop in 2010. The fine part really hooks your ear with a greasy smudge into its squealing signature note. I thought of the note abstractly, like a high-pitched wincing electric guitar bend, but one of the local old-time jammers here heard it as the onomatopoeic shriek of the titular possum, flattened on the ol’ rail. Regardless, it’s a catchy bit. The coarse part Biles them Cabbage Down in a familiar driving way, then it’s back to squashed possums.



It’s sourced to the Mississippi Possum Hunters, as heard on 1930’s shellac:





youtu.be/EiKxmXijZGw



 



Rhys' Bigfoot rendition really pronounces the ol’ Possum Squeal, which I challenge y’all to replicate on banjo as best you can. It’s a G tune, and while you’d do fine in gDGBD I think it’d be cool to hear in Old G (gDGDE). I betrayed my banjo ways yet again, and stuck to fiddle for this one:





youtu.be/HD6V1KyfrFM



 



There are a number of renditions to be found online. BHO member Chris Yohn plays a good one with some smooth slides.



Here’s Bigfoot in 2012. John is on point as usual with that burbling tone.





youtu.be/uc2UZx6ui1c



 



And here’s a studio recording of theirs (well, Rhys at least):





youtu.be/D0_KRvYXINc



 



From the Lost Mountain String Band (need to check these guys out closer), with lyrics:





youtu.be/Z5CEQRUoyyo



 



Really cool banjo arrangement, really cooks:





youtu.be/RmRbMJ--EtQ



 



Would love to see y'all's take on it!



Edited by - Zischkale on 06/02/2016 21:21:55

janolov - Posted - 06/03/2016:  02:21:46


Possum on a rail was TOTW at FiddleHangout (where they also like fiddle tunes) several years ago: fiddlehangout.com/archive/17422


llrevis - Posted - 06/03/2016:  04:47:32


Great choice. I am putting it at the top of my to learn list. There is a tab available on Tater Joe's website. 



 


Tobus - Posted - 06/03/2016:  07:55:52


Nice pick!  This one has been on my list to learn for a while, but I just hadn't got to it yet.  I've been thinking about pairing this one with Possum up a Gum Stump (which they always want me to play on the mandolin at my local jam) for a nice continuation of the possum theme.



By the way, how do you embed those videos into your post?  I'm used to using BBCode on other sites, but I can't figure it out on this forum software.


Zischkale - Posted - 06/03/2016:  08:25:13


quote:


Originally posted by Tobus

 

Nice pick!  This one has been on my list to learn for a while, but I just hadn't got to it yet.  I've been thinking about pairing this one with Possum up a Gum Stump (which they always want me to play on the mandolin at my local jam) for a nice continuation of the possum theme.




By the way, how do you embed those videos into your post?  I'm used to using BBCode on other sites, but I can't figure it out on this forum software.







There's a myriad of possum songs for sure, you could probably get a good 4 or 5 song medley goin'. Once you copy the Embed code from the Youtube vid, click the Source button above and paste the code where you want the video to be. As an aside, I think it'd be good practice for BHO if we all included Youtube links in addition to Embedded vids -- once a post is archived, the Embedded vids are gone and the text is referencing nothing.


bjcole - Posted - 06/03/2016:  09:48:54


I would certainly add my vote for always including YouTube links. It's very frustrating to look at archived TOTW threads and try to figure out what were the videos that were intensely discussed.

cmic - Posted - 06/03/2016:  10:16:13


About the videos: 2 of the videos Aaron present doesn't work for me. These 2 videos "...studio recording of theirs.." and "From the mountain string band" says "this Video is unavailable" . I suspect a bit a sensor from Youtube.  Anyone outside of US experiencing the same problem? If yes I plan to use a proxy...



And sorry for the out of topic...



 


Zischkale - Posted - 06/03/2016:  11:22:43


Edward: agreed, might be a good separate thread from Eric as kind of a PSA. We have a pretty good archive here, I search back quite often.



Michel: Sorry about the videos being unavailable, that's a bummer. It might be a location thing, not sure -- the first video you mention is (Rhys) Jones, Miller & Nelson from an album called Mississippi Square Dance. The second is Lost Mountain String Band, album is Waiting for the Boogerboo. Might want to check CD Baby or Amazon to hear samples (or yeah, use a proxy angel)


janolov - Posted - 06/03/2016:  11:42:23


quote:

Originally posted by cmic

 

About the videos: 2 of the videos Aaron present doesn't work for me. These 2 videos "...studio recording of theirs.." and "From the mountain string band" says "this Video is unavailable" . I suspect a bit a sensor from Youtube.  Anyone outside of US experiencing the same problem? If yes I plan to use a proxy...




And sorry for the out of topic...




 







I have the same problem (and it is not unusual). I think there is a US censorship at YouTube that try to protect Europeans from banjo music. However, most of the links worked and gave me inspiration.


dbrooks - Posted - 06/03/2016:  15:21:42


And you provide us with a lot of inspiration, Janolov.



David


JanetB - Posted - 06/03/2016:  16:27:19


Not surprisingly, another great TOTW choice, Aaron, with lots of fine examples, including your fiddling -- nice doublestops.  



I don't think my possum is squealing -- when we had a pet possum in the house she was very quiet.  



I ended up with the tuning fDGCD, capoed 2.  The chordal shapes in that tuning were very useful.




Ben's possum


Possum on the Rail (TOTW)


Possum on the Rail (CH) tab

bhniko - Posted - 06/04/2016:  11:11:16


Janet,

Not too sure about the possum...not the prettiest of all the creatures.

Always totally impressed with your knowledge of music and of course your playing.

 


Kernel - Posted - 06/04/2016:  12:37:20


quote:

Originally posted by llrevis

 

Great choice. I am putting it at the top of my to learn list. There is a tab available on Tater Joe's website. 


 

 


 




 



I always appreciate it when the TOTW is a reminder to dust off an old favorite like Possum On A Rail. I originally picked this up in a jam so I used this as an excuse to update my tab to be a little closer to the Rhys Jones recording which is the version I listen to most often.



You can find a couple of fiddle transcriptions here taterjoes.com/fiddle/PossumOnARail.pdf and a fairly simple banjo tab in standard tuning here taterjoes.com/banjo/PossumOnARail.pdf


Zischkale - Posted - 06/06/2016:  06:45:22


For the record, I'm 100% pro-possum. I love nature, and nature ain't always pretty. Sometimes you need a weird night-ghost mammal. Who, to top it all off, is North America's only marsupial! Hadn't thought to keep them as pets though, that picture's great, Janet. Arrangement's good too, think you've captured the high B note well. I really enjoy that tuning for Mexican Cowboy but hadn't tried much else, I should try my hand at some G tunes in it. 


Hangout Network Help

View All Topics  |  View Categories

0.0625