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Banjo Blog Entry-- 1/5/2011

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Wow... Been a long time since I blogged... Holidays.

 

Today I started working on the classic murder ballad, "Pretty Polly."  It's one of those "staples" you've got to learn-- like "The Ballad of Jed Clampett" or "Cripple Creek" or CMB/FMB.  I've really been wanting to work on this one for a long time. 

Been finding out recently that the songs I thought would be way too difficult for me to learn really aren't that bad.  I really want to dig into the little ornaments that Dr. Ralph is using on "Pretty Polly" becuase there is so much little subtlety going on that really drives the song.  But even more than the song itself, what makes that song is Dr. Ralph's plaintive wail.  You just can't sing that song without one.  It's *anguished.*.   On the one hand, the guy in the song is a perv and a psycho who hacks up his fiance and shoves her into a shallow grave.  On the other hand, he's tormented by it and confesses to the crime as soon as he does it.

Yeesh. 

Songs like this could only come from the telling of things that actually happened.

 

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lynn1
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Experience Level: Just Startin'

Interests:
[Jamming] [Socializing]

Occupation: Animator/Teacher

Gender: Male
Age: 55

My Instruments:
Dean Backwoods 5

Favorite Bands/Musicians:
Ralph & Carter Stanley, Tony Trischka, Steve Martin, Roy Clark

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Visible to: Public
Created 8/13/2009
Last Visit 11/11/2011

Just an old computer animator starting something new. I grew up in western Pennsylvania, and used to attend a bluegrass festival there every year that was held in the woods at a radio transmitter for a local public radio station. I remember that it was a novelty at first, but quickly grew to a pretty large event. That was over 30 years ago, so I guess Bluegrass is in my blood. Recently been rediscovering how much so.

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