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Thread: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

  1. #1

    Default What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    Let’s say you’re sitting around a fire with some friends or family and you decide to enhance the mood with your impressive mandolin skills. After taking a minute to explain that this instrument is not, in fact, a ukulele, you begin to play. What tunes do you bust out? Could be any genre. Vocal or not. Whatever.

    (Asking as a beginner that’s trying to build a repertoire)

  2. #2

    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    Foggy Mountain Top.
    If they're people I don't really care for... Wagon Wheel.
    "I play BG so that's what I can talk intelligently about." A line I loved and pirated from Mandoplumb

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  4. #3
    Registered User Mike Buesseler's Avatar
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    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    I would hold my mandolin out in front of me, with strings facing upwards. Then I would produce a one-inch red rubber ball, which I would begin to bounce off the strings...like on a man on a trampoline. (This takes practice.) You have to not only keep the ball going, but you need a steady tempo. Each time the ball hits the strings, it creates a nice chiming ring. Now, just reach my left hand up and around the neck and play some easy open-string chords to any simple little melody. Maybe sing.

    I saw a guy do that once.

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  6. #4

    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Buesseler View Post
    I would hold my mandolin out in front of me, with strings facing upwards. Then I would produce a one-inch red rubber ball, which I would begin to bounce off the strings...like on a man on a trampoline. (This takes practice.) You have to not only keep the ball going, but you need a steady tempo. Each time the ball hits the strings, it creates a nice chiming ring. Now, just reach my left hand up and around the neck and play some easy open-string chords to any simple little melody. Maybe sing.
    I’m canceling my Artistworks subscription. This is the only thing I need to learn.

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  8. #5

    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    Usually a crowd pleaser when I stop playing!
    " Give me some words I can dance to and a melody that rhymes" - Steve Goodman

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  10. #6
    Mandolin user MontanaMatt's Avatar
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    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    Wagon wheel
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    Registered User Murphy Slaw's Avatar
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    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    Mandolin wind.
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    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    Thank you and goodnight
    Play it like you mean it

    Not all the clams are at the beach

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    00-21 (voiced by Eldon Stutzman)

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  14. #9

    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    If it's Sunday start out with a spiritual like "Revival", as in Newgrass. Or "Uncloudy Day". Really nice if others join in singing. Chop it hard and get ready to retune for any further picking.

    Or,maybe an old foot stomper like "Little Rabbit". Keep dancers away from the campfire.

    Read the crowd from the feedback you get. Please the crowd and you please yourself.

    There may be someone in your presence who really wants to hear "Lawyers,Guns,and Money" power chords on a mando.

  15. #10
    Resident Hack
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    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    Thank God I'm A Country Boy
    or
    Workin' Man Blues

  16. #11

    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    Cherokee Shuffle, slower with some crosspickiing
    Whiskey B4 Breakfast
    Heck, if they never heard a mandolin before or are not familiar with bluegrass I might just noodle around some, they don’t know any better...
    Northfield F5M #268, AT02 #7

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    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    Quote Originally Posted by bigskygirl View Post
    Cherokee Shuffle, slower with some crosspicking
    Whiskey B4 Breakfast
    Absolutely! Both of those also work great as set openers.

    Around the fire, with only one choice, I might also go with John Reischman’s “Little Pine Siskin” or “Daylighting the Creek.”
    still trying to turn dreams into memories

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  19. #13
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    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    Yeah, I know that Wagon Wheel is like the Stairway to Heaven of acoustic music...but people really do like it.

    When I play with my band folks also really respond to Folsom Prison Blues, Man of Constant Sorrow, Sally Goodin. You Ain't Going Nowhere pleases the boomer era folks...
    Cripple Creek (the instrumental) can get people moving as well.

    Kirk

  20. #14
    but that's just me Bertram Henze's Avatar
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    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Buesseler View Post
    I would hold my mandolin out in front of me, with strings facing upwards. Then I would produce a one-inch red rubber ball, which I would begin to bounce off the strings...like on a man on a trampoline. (This takes practice.) You have to not only keep the ball going, but you need a steady tempo. Each time the ball hits the strings, it creates a nice chiming ring. Now, just reach my left hand up and around the neck and play some easy open-string chords to any simple little melody. Maybe sing.

    I saw a guy do that once.
    Reminds me of Tom Callister & friends...
    the world is better off without bad ideas, good ideas are better off without the world

  21. #15
    coprolite mandroid's Avatar
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    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    when I stop playing & go home.
    writing about music
    is like dancing,
    about architecture

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  23. #16

    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bertram Henze View Post
    Reminds me of Tom Callister & friends...
    I went down the proverbial rabbit hole searching and listening to the guy playing that black fiddle!And the band is Imar(?)

    Gotta find out more about these musicians. Crowd pleasers indeed!

  24. #17
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    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    L-O-V-E ala Nat King Monroe.

    Really.

    (Me on either mandolin or banjo, wife sings and plays guitar.)
    -- Don

    "Music: A minor auditory irritation occasionally characterized as pleasant."
    "It is a lot more fun to make music than it is to argue about it."


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  25. #18

    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    Mule Skinner Blues, but i don't yodel. I do it like Van Morrison
    Honky Tonk Women
    And if they are Playas: Frog on the Lillipad
    I hate to say it but Wagon Wheel does tare it up, but i play it on fiddle so i didn't include it. . . . Or did i?

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  27. #19
    Registered User QCS's Avatar
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    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    I find that most people are glad to listen to whatever you want to give em’. “ Long Black Veil” always works, “Goodnight Irene” if there are singers in the crowd. “This Train is Bound for Glory” can get rowdy, and WW is a crowd pleaser. “Beaumont Rag” if you want to showboat a little. They’re all good.

  28. #20
    but that's just me Bertram Henze's Avatar
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    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    Quote Originally Posted by V70416 View Post
    And the band is Imar(?)
    Aye!
    the world is better off without bad ideas, good ideas are better off without the world

  29. #21

    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    Hey Good Lookin’, Ring of Fire, Up on Cripple Creek, and Country Roads usually go over well and get people singing along.

  30. #22
    Registered User Mando Mort's Avatar
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    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    Cripple Creek
    Losing My Religion
    Jambalaya
    "All of us contain Music & Truth, but most of us can't get it out." - Mark Twain

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  31. #23

    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    I hate to say it, but it doesn't seem to have much to do with skill or ability. I find if I sing a song about being rowdy, drinkin' (too much) or partaking in other less than legal substances -- the crowd seems to perk up and be on your side, and that "might" allow them to notice my next more "serious" offering......

    I hate having to appeal to the lowest common denominator, but I also remind myself that my "art" is performed in beer joints, NOT art museums!!!

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  33. #24
    mandolin slinger Steve Ostrander's Avatar
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    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mando Mort View Post
    Cripple Creek
    Losing My Religion
    Jambalaya
    Norwegian Wood
    I’ve Just Seen a Face
    Ripple

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  35. #25
    Registered User Randi Gormley's Avatar
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    Default Re: What are your go-to crowd pleasers?

    I've noticed that almost any song John Denver recorded seems to get a lot of love, especially country roads. Granted, the setup isn't something i've ever done or plan to do, but whenever we're out in public and take a break from our usual music, John Denver just brings on the enthusiasm and sing-alongs.
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