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Sep 23, 2021 - 9:25:59 PM
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chuckv97

Canada

59475 posts since 10/5/2013

Norman Blake’s fine song from his “Fields of November” album. He and Tony Rice recorded it also, as well as Seldom Scene. Norman tells of working on the Johnny Cash TV show in 1969 and how June Carter related the news that they were closing the rail line through Poor Valley, home of the original Carter Family.
I play it on flatpick rhythm and fingerpicking guitar with vocals.
youtu.be/3ZNnYIksQO8


 

Sep 23, 2021 - 9:28:58 PM
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chuckv97

Canada

59475 posts since 10/5/2013


 

Sep 23, 2021 - 10:37:15 PM
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4182 posts since 10/18/2007

Great job.

Sep 23, 2021 - 10:41:01 PM
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rcc56

USA

3741 posts since 2/20/2016

I'll quietly report that I saw Norman a couple of weeks ago, and that he and Nancy are doing well.

I'm wondering if the combination train in the video is the "Virginia Creeper" which ran east into the mountains above Abingdon, Virginia, and was perhaps the last regular steam operated train in the US.

Edited by - rcc56 on 09/23/2021 22:55:17

Sep 24, 2021 - 8:30:39 AM
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Paul R

Canada

14987 posts since 1/28/2010

Super job, Chuck.

There was a guy who occasionally came to the Bluegrass jam who sang that song - which I'd sometimes request. Now I have a good example to learn from.

Norman and Nancy in '81:


Sep 24, 2021 - 9:01:41 AM
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chuckv97

Canada

59475 posts since 10/5/2013

quote:
Originally posted by Paul R

Super job, Chuck.

There was a guy who occasionally came to the Bluegrass jam who sang that song - which I'd sometimes request. Now I have a good example to learn from.

Norman and Nancy in '81:


Thanks, Paul.  Notice that on the lV chord in the chorus the vocal sings the major 7th ... gives it a nice tension.

Sep 29, 2021 - 8:01:47 AM
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2786 posts since 2/10/2013

The New York Central line from New York State to Montreal went "kaput" as well. Based on what my dad, an engineer on that line told me, they probably "managed" it into financial bankruptcy. I wish I had possessed more hindight when I was younger. I would have purchased all the station signs. Places like "Old Forge", "Otter Creek", and more. They were great looking signs.

Since Chuck was raised Montreal, he is probably aware of the names of some of those places on that railroad line from Utica NY to Montreal Canada.

Sep 29, 2021 - 11:01:16 AM

chuckv97

Canada

59475 posts since 10/5/2013

quote:
Originally posted by Richard Hauser

The New York Central line from New York State to Montreal went "kaput" as well. Based on what my dad, an engineer on that line told me, they probably "managed" it into financial bankruptcy. I wish I had possessed more hindight when I was younger. I would have purchased all the station signs. Places like "Old Forge", "Otter Creek", and more. They were great looking signs.

Since Chuck was raised Montreal, he is probably aware of the names of some of those places on that railroad line from Utica NY to Montreal Canada.


Thanks for that bit of rail history, Richard - I'm a bit of an old railway ("railroad" in the U.S.) fan myself. I took 85 photos of old , many of them abandoned, railway stations in southern Ontario one summer. 
However, I wasn't raised in Montreal ; I grew up in St. Catharines, Ontario where the Great Western Railway passed through. I do remember a now-closed line that ran from Montreal , through the northeast states, and back into Canada to Fredericton, New Brunswick and beyond. 


 

Sep 30, 2021 - 3:22:13 PM
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2639 posts since 4/5/2006

Grandpa was an engineer for the B&O RR. Built in 1905, their house being the first on the block, was a straight shot, across bare fields to the round house. Having fallen sleep many a night listening to those engines chugging in the freight yard, I, too, have a soft spot for those old steam trains.

Thank you all for your posts.

Oct 2, 2021 - 9:07:54 AM
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2786 posts since 2/10/2013

During summer months, teenagers worked on the railroad "section" gangs. The jobs were very physical and popular with athletes. There was usually a railroad car with a kitchen inside. And believe me, the cooks were better than most of our mothers. Lots of places converted the old railroad stations to restaurants. The railroads were a part of the community. Railroad employees were a close knit community. When my father was an engineer, and the all engineers/firemen/conductors wore standard distinct uniforms. The standards just deteriorated over time. As did many railroads. If travel was reliable and rates reasonable, I think passenger traffic would increase.

My son-in-law checked passenger rates from Mobile AL to Dayton OH. Cost a lot more than an airline ticket and took 3 days. I can remember what an engineer told me a long time ago,
railroads only wanted traffic that paid "big bucks". For a while U.S. mail traffic was the big item, but things changed and emphasis changed to freight. The number of freight cars being pulled by trains also increased. Old engineers also talked about how the incessant pounding by long streams of freight cars increased the damage done to the railroads foundation (i.e. the "railroad beds" on which the rails and tracks resided). And as in many cases, people making the guidelines were incompetent. Trains were not to exceed a specific speed limit.
In the mountains a train could not climb some inclines unless they exceeded that speed limit before they started the climb.

Oct 2, 2021 - 9:18:57 AM
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2786 posts since 2/10/2013

My favorite bluegrass singer was John Duffy.
















My favorite singer was John Duffy with the "Seldom Scene". No matter what tune he sang, he could create the right emotions. Just listen to him sing "A Picture From Life's Other Side" or one of the railroad tunes. John usually introduced me to great tune. Unlike many singers, his supporting band members remained constant and the musicians were highly rated. There was lots of humor in his stage performance.

Edited by - Bill Rogers on 10/07/2021 00:06:08

Oct 2, 2021 - 9:31:18 AM

chuckv97

Canada

59475 posts since 10/5/2013

Dick, here’s a railroad closing song about a place close to where you grew up - Ellensburg Station, NY. The Gibson Brothers are from there. Leigh said it was closer to the Canadian border than it was to go buy new guitar strings.
youtu.be/NjpTlZnQtdg


 

Oct 3, 2021 - 9:19:03 AM
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2786 posts since 2/10/2013

Here is a sample of John Duffey singing -

youtu.be/f-BQHGjmp6s

The Seldom Scene packed them in. Great band with fine instrumentalists and excellent vocalists.

Oct 3, 2021 - 9:48:08 AM
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2786 posts since 2/10/2013

I really enjoy hearing the Gibson Brothers. I'll bet jams in Canada will be moving indoors soon. You probably have some really good musicians in those Canadian jams. If I were still living in the Adirondacks I would get a motor home and visit Canada musical events. I like the regional fiddling events and styles. Styles like Metis and the French Canadian style where the feet do their part in playing the music.

Oct 6, 2021 - 12:14:41 PM
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heavy5

USA

1862 posts since 11/3/2016

quote:
Originally posted by Richard Hauser

Here is a sample of John Duffey singing -

youtu.be/f-BQHGjmp6s

The Seldom Scene packed them in. Great band with fine instrumentalists and excellent vocalists.


Great tune , thanks for posting ,    John also was quite the comedian & I don't mean the trash backwoods type , he was the Johnny Carson of bluegrass ,  as was Ed Adcock , sure miss that group !

Oct 6, 2021 - 11:23 PM
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Jim Yates

Canada

6775 posts since 2/21/2007

Right after the turn of the century, a friend, Mike Glover turned 50 and his wife had a surprise party for him. Mike is a model railroader and when Maggie and I arrived, Mike's wife, Pat, said that he was up in the attic working on his layout. She sent me up to see him. Mike kept a guitar in the train room, so he and I started passing the guitar back and forth playing train songs by Utah Phillips, Jimmie Rodgers , Norman Blake and that old favourite Anonymous. Robert Davis, from across the road came up and joined in with Somebody Robbed The Glendale Train.  Before long, Aengus Finnan, David Newland and Ted Staunton showed up and we kept passing the guitar around the circle.  We never ran out of songs and we never did get around to The Wreck Of The Old 97 or Rock Island Line.
About a month or two later, Port Hope had a railroad themed week and I got the gang (and some other folks) together and we did an afternoon of RR songs in the Port Hope Library.  Ted got dibs on Last Train From Poor Valley.

Oct 7, 2021 - 12:22:32 AM
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Bill Rogers (Moderator)

USA

25206 posts since 6/25/2005

quote:
Originally posted by Richard Hauser

Here is a sample of John Duffey singing -

youtu.be/f-BQHGjmp6s

The Seldom Scene packed them in. Great band with fine instrumentalists and excellent vocalists.


I saw Duffey with the Country Gentlemen in 1965 or '66. Great singer with a sometimes slightly off-color sense of humor. During his tenure, that band was even more stable than the Seldom Scene.  

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