Tunes from Harry Bolick

Old-Time Fiddle Tunes from Mississippi with
Harry Bolick
Friday, April 22, 7:30pm
Seman Violins
(4447 W. Oakton in Skokie)
A concert set, followed by an old-time jam.
Admission is $15.

How many fiddle tunes do you know that hail from Mississippi? Really. You need to learn a few more, because they are some of the coolest, quirkiest, funnest tunes ever found in these here United States. And our next Fiddle Club guest, Harry Bolick, a Brooklyn-ite with deep Mississippi roots, is just the guy to introduce us to this regional tradition and some of its fine tunes. Harry has recently published and produced the book and CDs pictured above, all containing tunes collected in Mississippi during the 1930s by folklorists working for the Works Project Administration, part of FDR’s New Deal. Here’s a sample.

Mississippi Shuffle
Mississippi Shuffle slow

White Hat
White Hat slow

Sugar in the Gourd
Sugar in the Gourd slow

Bust down.

Paul Tyler, convener

Fiddle Club does Make Music Chicago

Some tunes for Make Music Chicago day performances (Saturday, June 21).
These recordings can all be found in alphabetical order on the Fiddle Tune Archive. Direct links are provided below

Beatrice Hill’s 3-Hand Reel

Celeya Polka

Indian Corn

Little Betty Brown

La Pollo Pinta

Snouts and Ears of America

El Viento (aka Viento, El)

Walk Old Shoe, Heel Come a-Draggin’

More tunes for Make Music Chicago day performances (Saturday, June 21).
These can be found on various posts on Fiddle Club of the World blog (this very blog>. Use the tag cloud to locate them by the specifed tags in parentheses. Direct links are provided below.

(Arto Järvelä)
Edward Öst’s Brud Polkka

(Chirps Smith)
Mississippi Palisades

Ten Cents

(Irish fiddle)
The Black Rogue (jig)

Gone for His Tea

Kerry Slides

(Norwegian tunes)
Eg I Liten Eg

Vidar’s Vals

(Swedish Fiddle)
Häst Schottis

Marsch från Bohuslän

(Tune of the Week)
Sullivan’s Polka/Britches Full of Stitches


And a couple more in standard notation (Recordings linked below.
Missouri Waltz — Italian Scotís (schottische) — Blackthorn Stick (Scottish jig)

Missouri Waltz

Italian Scotís

The Blackthorn Stick

At our monthly jam session at the Leadway on Sunday, June 15, we’ll play through most of this list and pick our favorites for next Saturday’s performances. Be at the Leadway (5233 N. Damen) at 7pm.

Paul Tyler-convener

PS For your convenience, click here to download the Tune List, complete with links to recordings and notation.

Dance Band Practice

Square & Ceilidh Dance – July 17

I’ll call and teach the dances. You, Fiddle Club players, will be the band. There are tunes to be learned. We’ll start working on them at the Atlantic on Sunday April 17 at 6:30p. Don’t worry. I’ll make sure everybody knows them.

Here’s a tune book I made.
Note: a revised and corrected edition of the tune book is coming soon.

And here are the tunes . . .

Old-Time tunes for square and ceilidh dances
Ten Cents Chirps Smith – April ’08

Streak o’ Lean Pete Sutherland – October ’09

Daylight in the Morning Jim & Kim Lansford – July ’10

Granny Alan Jabbour – October ’08

Who’ll Cut the Britches Genevieve & Smith Koester – April ’10

Fire on the Mountain Matt Brown – May ’10

Sugar in the Gourd Paul Brown (Mostly Mountain Boys) – June ’10

She Oughta Been a Lady Vesta Johnson – October ’10 (from the jam session)

Steppin’ in the Parlour Bruce Greene – April ’11 (recording from Bruce’s visit in 1996)

Couple dances
Koputus polkka Arto Järvelä’s – September ’09

Hast Schottis Mary Allsopp – January ’11

plus 3 more tunes on this earlier post.

Tunes for the Square & Ceilidh Dance

Dance band practice April 17 and June 19. We’ll workshop some of the tunes and dances on June 19. The full dance is scheduled for July 17.

Here’s a fun video from Italy of the Tacco e Punta (Heel & Toe?) dance.

Tacco e Punta (aka Patacake Polka)

Raatikko a dance known among Finns, Germans and other Euro-Americans

Give these variants a listen, Ein Zwie Drie und a Fier, from Joe Altman & the Spaasmachers, a German band in St. Meinrad, Indiana and The Seven Step, by a Bohemian Polka band in New Braunfels, Texas.

The Seven Step, a different dance and a different tune in the key of G

I learned it in D from Wayne Satkamp of Stendahl, Indiana and Herb Wenning of Portersville, Indiana, who played it in G. Here’s a video of The Seven Step as danced by the Ukrainians and Métis of Manitoba.

And we have to play a schottische. One of the most fun dances ever.
Hast Schottische slow from Mary Allsopp (see Jan 16th meeting)

We’ve played the Hast Schottis before. Next time, we’ll have more dancers.

Paul Tyler, convener
Fiddle Club of the World (Chicago Chapter)