Week #262 ~ Been All Around the World

  1. Barbara Shultz
    Barbara Shultz
    This week's winner is Been All Around the World, which was submitted as an Old Time tune. I'm not familiar with it... if you have any links to add, that would be great!

    I may need some help on this one.... as I found several tunes/songs with that name. But Puff Daddy?

    Anyway, I find one that looks like it could be considered Old Time, which is alternately known as Hang Me, Oh Hang Me, with alternate titles of Cape Girardeau, I've Been All Around This World, The Hobo's Lament and The Hobo Blues.

    Here's some info:

    I've Been All Around This World

    Composer: Traditional
    I've Been All Around This World was performed by the Grateful Dead in acoustic sets in 1969, 1970 and, most frequently, 1980. It was also performed by Jerry Garcia in acoustic performances during the 1980's with John Kahn and with the Jerry Garcia Acoustic Band.

    The song occurs on other recordings with variations of the I've Been All Around This World title and as Hang Me, Oh Hang Me, Up On The Blue Ridge Mountains and Cape Girardeau. There are other songs which share the tune or lyrics, for example, Working On The New Railroad.

    The earliest commercial recording appears to be on a 1946 single by Grandpa Jones. The Library of Congress have a field recording from 1937 but no earlier versions have yet been identified. The origins of I've Been All Around This World are not easy to trace. It possibly derives from a number of different songs.

    The `Hang Me, Oh Hang Me' verse is thought to derive from the traditional song "My Father Was A Gambler", a US ballad, which is thought to be about a murderer who was hanged in 1870. The chorus of this song given in Vance Randolph's Ozark Folksongs from a 1929 field recording is given below.

    One possible source for other parts of the song is Dixon and Johnson or The Three Butchers which seems to have been a later introduction into the States from UK - collected in 1890s in UK but only later in the US. Randolph's Ozark Folksongs contains a field recording from 1941 of Dixon and Johnson. The tune given is fairly similar to that we know for I've Been All Around This World.

    I'm not having any luck finding notation... here are some videos!

  2. Marcelyn
    Love this song!
    Here's some mandolin tab from Jack Tuttle...

    Here's a moderately paced fiddle demo you can play along with...

    This version from Jerry Garcia features David Grisman...

    And here's another great take on it from the Foghorn Stringband...

    Here's a link to the Greatful Dead version with guitar tab, lyrics, chords, MP3 example, and midi sound file...

    The traditional stringband versions have a different chord structure, so here's another linke with those chords and lyrics....
  3. Ben Cooper
    Ben Cooper
    Love this tune. Especially from the Grateful Dead album Reckoning.
  4. harrywhohaa
    Hi been quietly enjoying all your playing over the last few months, standard is getting pretty high here!

    Had to post up here for this one being a quite a follower of the more acoustic Garcia numbers.

  5. Marcelyn
    Whoa, Harry and David! It's been great fun working on this song today with such amazing early examples! You two nailed it.
  6. Michael Pastucha
    Michael Pastucha
    Here's our version of Been All Around This World, string band style! Marcy played fiddle, Jeff played banjo and I filled in the other instruments and vocal. We're the Saw Mountain String Band...

  7. jonny250
    really nicely done folks, i enjoyed all the versions and always enjoy hearing the saw mountain band!
    i was meaning to get around to this tune this week, but time has caught u with me, so just had a go this morning... i had trouble with the video and the tracks, so have instead added a couple of piccies from our recent 'Sore Fingers' music course in the UK:
  8. Marcelyn
    Love your lively strumpattern, Jonny! I was worried the poor guy wasn't going to get his final request, but you topped it off with a great banjo break after all those fun mandolin solos.
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