Genre: Old Time Style: Clawhammer and Old-Time Key: D Tuning: Double C (gCGCD) Difficulty: Intermediate
Posted by etparadox, updated: 9/20/2014
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Notes: Here's a tab for William H. Stepp's 1937 version of Bonaparte's Retreat. It's rather different from the older version, being much faster and having an altered melodic structure, but the link is evident with some study and playing it sure is fun. To play the Stepp version on banjo one must use almost exclusively hammer-ons and pull-offs as the tune is a barrage of eighth notes alternating up and down the scale. With some practice it is doable, but it may take a while to get it up to speed. The A part is always the same, sans ornamentation, but there are two versions of the B part. The melodies are the same they are in different octaves (both in first position though). The traditional way of playing it is to play the low B on the first and the high B on the second. Repeat this cycle to the end of the tune.
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