Results 1 to 23 of 23

Thread: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

  1. #1
    Registered User dbmandolin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Boston, MA
    Posts
    24
    Blog Entries
    189

    Default Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    I'm trying to put together a list of 20 tunes that should be the essential core repertoire for all Oldtime mandolinists. I want this list of tunes to be a broad sampling of all the different Oldtime styles for players at varying levels of ability. What do you think I should include? Thanks!

  2. #2
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Westchester, NY
    Posts
    26,096

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    That is an interesting question. I can think of standard repertoire tunes like Soldier's Joy or Mississippi Sawyer but most sessions or parties or festivals I have been to, you rarely hear the warhorses these days. And there are some tunes that will be popular and will then fade from most people's repertoire.

    I am sure that you will get a wide sampling on this thread but, frankly, I am not sure what purpose a small list would serve. Frankly, I would take a look at Larry Warren's site, for instance, and pick a handful of tunes in various keys from there and hope for the best. I am not sure what a core repertoire would actually be for old time music these days.
    Jim

    My Stream on Soundcloud
    Facebook
    19th Century Tunes
    Playing lately:
    1923 Gibson A2 black snakehead -- '83 Flatiron A5-2 -- Brentrup A4C -- 1915 Frank Merwin Ashley violin -- Huss & Dalton DS -- 1939 Gibson L-00 -- 1936 Epiphone Deluxe -- 1928 Gibson L-5 -- 1937 Gibson L-Century -- ca. 1890s Fairbanks Senator Banjo -- ca. 1923 Vega Style M tenor banjo -- ca. 1920 Weymann Style 25 Mandolin-Banjo -- National RM-1

  3. #3
    Registered User Charles E.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Saint Augustine Beach FL
    Posts
    4,353

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    Why did you not ask for 20 core tunes for mandolin in the " rock, folk rock,etc" forum?
    What exactly is your goal?
    Charley

    A bunch of stuff with four strings

  4. #4
    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Upstate New York
    Posts
    22,909
    Blog Entries
    52

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    Quote Originally Posted by dbmandolin View Post
    I'm trying to put together a list of 20 tunes that should be the essential core repertoire for all Oldtime mandolinists. I want this list of tunes to be a broad sampling of all the different Oldtime styles for players at varying levels of ability. What do you think I should include? Thanks!
    Not as easy as it sounds. If you are asking what are the 20 tunes that I should learn to be competent at most any old timey jam it is really difficult. There are regional differences in what is popular at any given moment, and even within a region, there are differences between one jam and another in how "orthodox" old timey they get. And also, how experienced the jammers are. A jam with more seasoned players is probably going to avoid many of the war horses and play more esoteric stuff, while a mixed jam will have a higher percentage of tunes everyone knows.

    Tough question.

    Were you to ask for the top 20 contra dance tunes I could do it, as I notice that the there is a lot of regional overlap. I am going to guess that about one third of the repertoire of just about any contra dance pick up band in the country is the same. But not so for old time jams.
    Indulge responsibly!

    The entire staff
    funny....

  5. #5
    Registered User Cheryl Watson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    St. Augustine, Florida, USA
    Posts
    1,340

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    Here's a few: Ducks on the Pond, Soldier's Joy, Buffalo Gals, Cumberland Gap, Pretty Little Girl, Darling Nelly Grey, Cold Frosty Morining, Blackberry Blossom, Old Grey Mare, Big Sciota (or Scioty), Fire on the Mountain, June Apple, Fly Around Pretty Little Miss, Sally Ann (Sail Away Ladies), West Virginia Girls, Bury Me Beneath the Willow, Flop-eared Mule, Boatman Dance, Leather Britches, New Five Cent Piece, Midnight on the Water, Lost Indian, Old Joe Clark, Cotton Eyed Joe, Kitchen Girl, Shove That Pig's Foot a Little Further in the Fire, Grey Eagle, I've Endured, Rain and Snow, Cluck Old Hen, Liza Jane, Shady Grove, Cookhouse Joe, Georgia Railroad, Big-eyed Rabbit, and many more including Nail That Catfish to a Tree.

    Go here to see the keys:

    http://www.oldtimejam.com/Tunes.html

  6. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Cheryl Watson For This Useful Post:


  7. #6
    Registered User dusty miller's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    382

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    Quote Originally Posted by Charles E. View Post
    Why did you not ask for 20 core tunes for mandolin in the " rock, folk rock,etc" forum?
    What exactly is your goal?
    Good question. I wrote some out in the bluegrass thread but then erased it after I saw it was a thread everywhere. I didn't do it to be part of a survey. Thought it was originally a legit question. I'm out. Then again I could just be grumpy!
    Last edited by dusty miller; Oct-28-2013 at 11:12pm.
    Jacobson #24
    Kentucky KM-620
    Michael Kelly
    Fender
    Gold Tone Banjo

  8. #7
    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Upstate New York
    Posts
    22,909
    Blog Entries
    52

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    Hmmm. I see that. Whats up dbmandolin? Are you publishing a book?

    I think the easiest way to figure out the tunes central to any jam is to attend the jam and experience what tunes are played a lot.
    Indulge responsibly!

    The entire staff
    funny....

  9. #8
    Registered User dusty miller's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    382

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    Guess if I knew what it was about.
    Last edited by dusty miller; Oct-28-2013 at 10:39pm.
    Jacobson #24
    Kentucky KM-620
    Michael Kelly
    Fender
    Gold Tone Banjo

  10. #9
    two t's and one hyphen fatt-dad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Richmond, Virginia
    Posts
    7,226

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    Quote Originally Posted by Cheryl Watson View Post
    Here's a few: Ducks on the Pond, Soldier's Joy, Buffalo Gals, Cumberland Gap, Pretty Little Girl, Darling Nelly Grey, Cold Frosty Morining, Blackberry Blossom, Old Grey Mare, Big Sciota (or Scioty), Fire on the Mountain, June Apple, Fly Around Pretty Little Miss, Sally Ann (Sail Away Ladies), West Virginia Girls, Bury Me Beneath the Willow, Flop-eared Mule, Boatman Dance, Leather Britches, New Five Cent Piece, Midnight on the Water, Lost Indian, Old Joe Clark, Cotton Eyed Joe, Kitchen Girl, Shove That Pig's Foot a Little Further in the Fire, Grey Eagle, I've Endured, Rain and Snow, Cluck Old Hen, Liza Jane, Shady Grove, Cookhouse Joe, Georgia Railroad, Big-eyed Rabbit, and many more including Nail That Catfish to a Tree.

    Go here to see the keys:

    http://www.oldtimejam.com/Tunes.html
    I'd go to that old time jam! Learn these!

    f-d
    ˇpapá gordo ain’t no madre flaca!

    '20 A3, '30 L-1, '97 914, 2012 Cohen A5, 2012 Muth A5, '14 OM28A

  11. #10
    Registered User dbmandolin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Boston, MA
    Posts
    24
    Blog Entries
    189

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    Hey, thanks so much for these suggestions! Good questions too. Mostly, I'm putting together these lists for my own benefit. I love learning new tunes and I want to learn tunes in many genres that are well know amongst their respective music circles. I also hope to use these tunes as a resource my students and other mandolin players. Finding a common ground of an essential repertoire is a great starting point for students (at least that has been my experience).

  12. #11
    Registered User dusty miller's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    382

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    Quote Originally Posted by dusty miller View Post
    Good question. I wrote some out in the bluegrass thread but then erased it after I saw it was a thread everywhere. I didn't do it to be part of a survey. Thought it was originally a legit question. I'm out. Then again I could just be grumpy!
    Poor choice of words and attitude on my part.
    Last edited by dusty miller; Oct-30-2013 at 1:17pm.
    Jacobson #24
    Kentucky KM-620
    Michael Kelly
    Fender
    Gold Tone Banjo

  13. #12

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    With the goal of "learning new tunes in many genres," a good idea would be to check out the Song-A-Week Social Group here. To get voted in as a tune of the week, it's usually fairly well known. You can get a good sampling of old time, Celtic, and BG. There are #235 tunes listed in the Table of Contents and hundreds more in the Table of Contents for other tunes. Even from those lists, , I'd say there are way more than twenty that I'd put on an "Essential OT" list. and there are lots more they haven't had time to vote in yet.

  14. The following members say thank you to Marcelyn for this post:


  15. #13
    Registered User Charles E.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Saint Augustine Beach FL
    Posts
    4,353

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    Do you want twenty tunes in D or some in that other key?

    Seriously though, in addition to tunes like (I hate to say it) Angeline the Baker (D) and Cluck Old Hen (Am) for beginner tunes, you might want to consider some rags in C. Stones Rag, Old Melinda, and New Money come to mind.
    Check out the thread "what's your new fiddle tune" in this forum, lots of good tunes.

    Good luck with your teaching and musical endeavours.
    Last edited by Charles E.; Oct-30-2013 at 7:04pm.
    Charley

    A bunch of stuff with four strings

  16. #14
    two t's and one hyphen fatt-dad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Richmond, Virginia
    Posts
    7,226

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    You can also go to a local jam and write down the tunes they play.

    f-d
    ˇpapá gordo ain’t no madre flaca!

    '20 A3, '30 L-1, '97 914, 2012 Cohen A5, 2012 Muth A5, '14 OM28A

  17. #15
    Registered User dusty miller's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    382

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    I'm just getting into a lot of Old Time while learning the clawhammer banjo. There might be a couple duplicates from above lists.

    Boatman, Black Eyed Suzie, Bull at the Wagon, Cotton Eyed Joe, Broken Down Gambler, Crow Creek, Johnny Don't get Drunk, Lost Indian, Hangman's Reel, Cuckoo's Nest, Kitchen Girl, Little Rabbit, Liberty, Possum in a Well, Jump Jim Crow, Sandy Boys, Jaybird, John Brown's March, Dry and Dusty, Flop Eared Mule.

    Lots of Old Time tunes out there.
    Jacobson #24
    Kentucky KM-620
    Michael Kelly
    Fender
    Gold Tone Banjo

  18. #16
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Westchester, NY
    Posts
    26,096

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    20 tunes in multiple genres. Yeah you will get a "core" (sort of) in each but not much of anything in any of those genres. Besides after you master those 100 tunes in old time, celtic, jazz, classical and bluegrass then you go to a gathering/rehearsal and none of them are being played.

    I play a lot of old time, but rarely do I hear anyone play Old Joe Clark or Angeline the Baker except rank beginners. Sometimes it is nice to return to those tunes and re-explore them but for the most part jam repertoire does move on and get to more obscure tunes. I would say you need at least 100 core tunes in each genre to get anywhere -- and best to stick around in each genre to learn the nuances.
    Jim

    My Stream on Soundcloud
    Facebook
    19th Century Tunes
    Playing lately:
    1923 Gibson A2 black snakehead -- '83 Flatiron A5-2 -- Brentrup A4C -- 1915 Frank Merwin Ashley violin -- Huss & Dalton DS -- 1939 Gibson L-00 -- 1936 Epiphone Deluxe -- 1928 Gibson L-5 -- 1937 Gibson L-Century -- ca. 1890s Fairbanks Senator Banjo -- ca. 1923 Vega Style M tenor banjo -- ca. 1920 Weymann Style 25 Mandolin-Banjo -- National RM-1

  19. #17
    Registered User pefjr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Las Vegas
    Posts
    678

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    Click Home, upper left click tab, click old time
    I have the world in a jug, and the stopper in my hand.

  20. #18
    music with whales Jim Nollman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Friday Harbor WA
    Posts
    1,567

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Garber View Post
    I play a lot of old time, but rarely do I hear anyone play Old Joe Clark or Angeline the Baker except rank beginners. Sometimes it is nice to return to those tunes and re-explore them but for the most part jam repertoire does move on and get to more obscure tunes.
    Ditto here.

    I conclude that there can be no "core 20" Old time. Any attempt to bottle it up that way is an exercise in the arbitrary. You are essentially asking us to offer up a list commensurate with Rolling Stone magazine's list of 100 favorite Beatle tunes. Except this is far more subjective, because at least the Beatles tunes were all composed by 4 guys during the same short time span. Old Time music has developed over several hundred years. Many of the genres have evolved in relative isolation from each other.

    I just spent the weekend jamming with one of the premier Old Time performers and ethnomusicologists in the Pacific Northwest. He shared with me his Contra Dance tune list of about 80 tunes. I knew about 10 of the tunes, at best. I'd heard about 10 more of them. It was just as easy for me to start playing tunes he couldn't play. And that's how these sessions usually go, with passionate players wishing to teach other players previously unknown great tunes. My friend also mentioned to me that New England contra dance bands have a completely different grab bag of Old Time tunes than our part of the country.

    I notice that you ask the same question on a Celtic thread. That music draws from a far deeper well.
    Explore some of my published music here

    —Jim

    BRW 3-point #65 (2009)
    Altman 2-point (2007)
    Portuguese fado cittern (1965)

  21. #19
    Registered User Sandy Beckler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    granada hills, california
    Posts
    396

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    Thanks Cheryl...great resource "oldtimejam.com
    Sandy

    Quote Originally Posted by Cheryl Watson View Post
    Here's a few: Ducks on the Pond, Soldier's Joy, Buffalo Gals, Cumberland Gap, Pretty Little Girl, Darling Nelly Grey, Cold Frosty Morining, Blackberry Blossom, Old Grey Mare, Big Sciota (or Scioty), Fire on the Mountain, June Apple, Fly Around Pretty Little Miss, Sally Ann (Sail Away Ladies), West Virginia Girls, Bury Me Beneath the Willow, Flop-eared Mule, Boatman Dance, Leather Britches, New Five Cent Piece, Midnight on the Water, Lost Indian, Old Joe Clark, Cotton Eyed Joe, Kitchen Girl, Shove That Pig's Foot a Little Further in the Fire, Grey Eagle, I've Endured, Rain and Snow, Cluck Old Hen, Liza Jane, Shady Grove, Cookhouse Joe, Georgia Railroad, Big-eyed Rabbit, and many more including Nail That Catfish to a Tree.

    Go here to see the keys:

    http://www.oldtimejam.com/Tunes.html

  22. #20
    I'll take it! JGWoods's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Chelmsford MA
    Posts
    1,404

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    The old standards- Soldiers Joy, Arkansas Traveler and such- don't get played nearly as much as I wish they would. It's like there's a rule against playing something everyone knows. Too bad. They are a great way to start off a big group.
    As I got used to jamming and ran across a continuous stream of tunes I didn't know I did find I was learning them faster and faster so that on most tunes that aren't too crooked I could keep up on the second or third time through. I often record tunes as a jam goes along then go home and polish up the stuff I just heard.
    Be yourself, everyone else is taken.
    Favorite Mandolin of the week: 2013 Collings MF Gloss top.

  23. #21
    Registered User dbmandolin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Boston, MA
    Posts
    24
    Blog Entries
    189

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    Thanks for the suggestions! Sorry to raise any controversy or frustration with my question. Perhaps it is an unfair question to ask. I realize that there can't be a true "core" repertoire of twenty tunes in any of these genres. However, I feel that finding the common ground between the different practicing areas of this historic tradition would be a great resource for me and my students. Thanks again! I appreciate all of your input and experience so much!

  24. The following members say thank you to dbmandolin for this post:


  25. #22
    Lost my boots in transit terzinator's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Twin Cities, MN
    Posts
    1,589

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    Part of the trick of picking 20 tunes is that one "old time" group of jammers might have a different set of "core" tunes than another group of jammers down the street.

    The best idea is to go to some jams and see what THEY play. Record the jam or write down all the tunes. Do this a bunch of times.

    Enjoy!

  26. #23
    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Upstate New York
    Posts
    22,909
    Blog Entries
    52

    Default Re: Suggestions for Core Oldtime Mandolin Repertoire

    For all those war horses that don't get played much, I like to sneak them in. So for example Old Joe Clark might not be a choice, but in a rip snorting jam I might sneak it in after another, more esoteric tune, if the energy is right. Everyone usually responds positively, and actually enjoys the common tune in the new context.

    Its another way to make old new again.

    I don't really understand all this work in being prepared for what one might find at a jam. Best way to find out what you need to know is to go to the jam, and its more than likely however prepared you think you are, you will not be prepared anyway.

    The jam, be it Irish Traditional, Old Time, Bluegrass, it used to where people got together to learn and share music. Now it seems folks think its a place to play what you have worked on back home in the woodshed.
    Indulge responsibly!

    The entire staff
    funny....

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •