Tunes from Genevieve (Harrison) Koester

A selection of tunes from Dear Old Illinois (both a place and the life work of Genevieve’s father, Garry Harrison). Gena plays with her dad in the New Mules, a band featured at the Old Town School’s Trad Fest in January 2008. The first of these tunes is from the David McIntosh collection of folksongs from Southern Illinois from the middle of the last century. The next two are tunes Garry collected from downstate fiddlers 30 years ago.

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Across the Plains of Illinois “Source version is unaccompanied ballad singing by Ollie Barnard of Cave-in-Rock, IL. . . . I’ll sing all the words when we all get together but it has a nice tune by itself too.”

Across the Plains of Illinois slow

Sally Johnson from “Otis Reynolds of Geff, IL. There are a million versions of Sally Johnson, and most of them are very note-y and embellished. This one is the opposite. :)” (Warning: not the version transcribed in Dear Old Illinois.)

Sally Johnson slow

Who’ll Cut the Britches? from Henry Soper of Mt. Vernon, IL. “The full title given by Mr. Soper was the verse:
Oh boy, who’ll cut the britches?
Daddy cut them out, and mammy sewed the stitches.”

Who’ll Cut the Britches? slow

Genevieve Koester will be the featured guest at the Fiddle Club of the World meeting on Sunday, April 18 at 6:30pm at the Leadway Bar & Gallery (5233 N. Damen) in Chicago. Click here to register.

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