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Jan 23, 2021 - 7:54:20 PM
7 posts since 10/8/2018

Hi there -- can anyone determine what tuning and key this would be for 5 string banjo? I like this old song and think I can play it claw but need some help with chords since chorus is dicey. I don't know how to trans from guitar to banjo.

There are better versions but this is what I found: youtube.com/watch?v=QGwlmZN-mTU and. sheetmusicnow.com/products/dow...e-p268961

Jan 23, 2021 - 11:55:45 PM
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1595 posts since 7/4/2009
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The song has the same tune as "The Little Beggarman" or "Red-Haired Boy," which is usually played in double C on the banjo - gCGCD (often tuned or capoed up to D, especially when playing with a fiddler). The recording you posted is in the key of D. I'm sure you'll be able to find many tabs for Red-Haired Boy on the Hangout.

As far as the chords, I think it's just D, G, A, and C (I, IV, V, VII).

Edited by - UncleClawhammer on 01/23/2021 23:59:01

Jan 24, 2021 - 2:52:17 AM
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janolov

Sweden

40906 posts since 3/7/2006

There seems to be several different tunes "Down in A Coal Mine" and "Down in The Coalmine".

Down In The Coalmine: The YouTube link above with Seamus Kennedy is, as Matthew wrote, a version  of "The Little Beggarman" or "Red-Haired Boy". I played in standard tuning in G or A (capo 2). It usually goes in 4/4, but the version above seems to be more 6/8 time. However, the lyrics seem to be from the other version below.

Down In A Coal Mine: The sheet notation link in the OP's post is another tune written by J.B. Geoghegan in 1872. The original (?) notation and some other information can bee read here. It seems to be close to the version linked above, both the melody and the lyrics. I have not found (after 3 minutes search) any recording of this version but there seems to be notation out there.

There is also a song by folk singer Joe Glazer called Down In A Coal Mine: https://www.amazon.com/Down-Coal-Mine-Joe-Glazer/dp/B004AXO80Q

Jan 24, 2021 - 5:18:33 AM
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2790 posts since 4/19/2008
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D D D D D D G A
D D D D C C C C
D D D D D D G A
D D D D A A D D

C C C C C C G G
D D D D C C C C
D D D D D D G A
D D D D A A D D

Jan 24, 2021 - 7:12:23 AM
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8169 posts since 3/17/2005

6/8 time in clawhammer style is a bit tricky. Noah Cline has a sticky at the top of this page which will help.
Also, a master at jigs is Ken Perlman whose books are readily available.
As Jan says, the Little Beggerman/Red haired Boy/Soldier with a wooden Leg version is usually payed in G and in 4/4 time rather than 6/8. It's a very notey tune, but not too difficult.

Edited by - chip arnold on 01/24/2021 07:13:02

Jan 24, 2021 - 12:22:14 PM

7 posts since 10/8/2018

Thanks!

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