Posted by jrjenks on Monday, November 30, 2009
A check-in on the Banjo versus TV project — J.R.'s ongoing plan to spend more time on his banjo than on TV. This post covers 11/22/2009 through 11/28/2009.
I visited my British grandmother this past week. I've blogged about her before, how she was a motorcycle courier during the London Blitz.
We talked about her old favorite pub songs from her days in London. Songs like Knees Up Mother Brown, which starts about 50 seconds into this video:
That's a great old pub song. (And only a truly twisted mind would think it would make a good kid's ditty.)
Another of her favorite pub songs is My Old Man's a Dustman, seen here with a tea chest bass (the skiffle band equivalent of a jug band's washtub bass):
Another notable thing about that My Old Man's a Dustman video is the use of a banjolele, which is what Granma thinks of when she thinks of banjos. Basically, she thinks that banjo players should sound like George Formby:
So now I've taken it as a challenge to learn how to play some pub songs for Granma on my banjo.
I've ordered up a copy of Let's Have Another One: 22 Classic Pub Songs to get started.
Also in the last week:
The Florida Folklife Collection includes approximately 150 cubic feet of paper records (including field notes and administrative files) and thousands of audio and video recordings, which date from the 1930s through 2001.
Created by Florida folklorists, the Collection consists of 88 individual series that document the performances by, interviews with, and fieldwork surveys of folk musicians, artisans, storytellers, folklife interpreters, and other Florida peoples and their traditions. Read more.
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'Gentle On My Mind' 45 min
'Gentle On My Mind' 50 min
'June Apple. fCFAC tuning.' 53 min
'Janish leaf banjo (UK)' 2 hrs