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 ARCHIVED TOPIC: TOTW 12/18/20 - Jack Wilson

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:

aschweigert - Posted - 12/18/2020:  13:00:23

Hey everybody!

I was wracking my brain trying to think of a good holiday tune to do this week but I didn't come up with one and kind of ran short on time, so! Here's a tune that hasn't been done yet that I like to play: Jack Wilson.

It's one of the rare pretty straightforward tunes from the John Salyer home recordings made in 1940-41. The only unusual thing about it is that the B part is half as long as the A part. I believe I originally got it from Allison de Groot and you can find a notated source for it in Jeff Todd Titon's "Old-Time Kentucky Fiddle Tunes".

The tune is usually in D (aDADE, I'm playing it down in C) and the source recording is notable for us banjo players because the banjo is much louder than the fiddle so you can hear the playing quite well. :)

The banjo player on this recording is Claude Helton, Salyer's neighbor, who appears on three of the Salyer home recordings, this one, Lonesome John and Love Somebody (basically soldier's joy, more or less).

Here's the Salyer recording:

There are also a few contemporary recordings:

Adam Hurt included a version of it on his Earth Tones album:

Hog Eyed Man:

Jesse Wells:

The Hot Seats:

And here's a quick recording of a couple spins through it, that should roughly match the tab I've included:

Enjoy! Happy holidays!

Hay-on-Wye - Posted - 12/18/2020:  14:01:53

Good choice of tune and lovely playing

RG - Posted - 12/18/2020:  20:11:16

Great TOTW Adam and one of my favorite tunes to play on banjo or fiddle! Real nice version.

carolynf - Posted - 12/20/2020:  17:29:07

I like this, Thanks!

JanetB - Posted - 12/21/2020:  09:18:09

Great choice, Adam, and nice portrayal of the tune in your video. Because the banjo covers up John Salyer's fiddle, I looked at Jeff Titon's notation. It has a couple of differences from the normal performance we hear in the tune, so I tried to incorporate them.

JeroenJ - Posted - 12/22/2020:  05:48:42

Thank you Adam for a TOTW that is actually manageable in a week.
I hope that some more players will still jump in with their versions of this tune, which sounds just right for beginners.

I uploaded mine

I didn't notate anything, but I listened to Salyer, Mullins (Lomax recording), Tony Furtado and Dirk Powell, Bruce Molsky on "banjo gathering" and Noah Cline on the youtube clip with his flatback gourd banjo.

I am amazed by how the lack of chord changes in different versions sometimes feels primitive in a poor way and sometimes adds weight and magic instead.

JeroenJ - Posted - 12/22/2020:  06:12:35

Of course it's not Bruce Molsky on "banjo gathering" but David Winston.

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