Truman Price

Fiddle and …

Music of the frontiers

A slogan adopted years ago after many Oregon Trail concerts and other explorations:   okay, but is it complete?      My fiddle is a love affair.

      Truman 2014 where?

    Summer was nice.  Fiddled about half of all Sunny Saturday Mornings at the Independence Saturday Market, where I was good for about 2, 2 1/2 hours without a break, trying to play as wide a variety of songs and tunes as I can.
.   Still hoping
to figure out how to continue the Square Dance series, maybe out at Salt Creek, but nothing firm yet.
.   Enjoyed doing half a program at Brown House, Stayton, June 23, on violin history then fiddle.  First Mark Babson sampled baroque/classical/romantic violin pieces; then my old-time fiddle: (an overview of 10+ different threads that have woven to make old-time fiddle, starting with the oldest tune, Soldier’s Joy, showing how it can be played many ways but is still the same; describe the Scots/Scots-Irish migrations to Appalachia, and the Mixolydian mode of the bagpipe chanter; the influence of African-American fiddlers; their synthesis in a tune learned  in the New River Valley; for contrast, a regular New England/Eastern Canada tune; a French Canadian tune; in response to a question, stories about the Metis fiddlers; the influx of rags; swing; Scandinavian; a Norteno tune; a tune played in an open tuning; and, for where do all these things come from, why I made up “The Swallows”, and played that.  A one-hour romp through Old-Time Fiddle as I see it.)  A hit.
.  The Metis question inspired me to work, for a while, on Red River Jig.   Tricky! Not really a jig, I think; it feels like a regular 4/4 measure plus a half-measure, repeated many times quickly.
.   The St. Paul Rodeo July 3 also was fun. I got to open for, and play rest breaks for, the Bronco
Billy Band.  Alternated old country-western songs with every tune I could think of that mentioned large animals, finishing with a favorite about a rodeo rider, Sweet Wyoming Home, yo-de-lay-ee oo..
.   And “The Steam Punk Jane Austen Ball” near Halloween was a kick —  dozens of extraordinary costumes wending through the hospitality tables in the formal Grand March on the upper floor of the Mission Mill Building, straight into squares and reels.. I love doing this stuff!

Still hope to break even on the memoir:

 

Canora:  Notes from an Old-Time Fiddler,

Perfect-bound pb, 8.5″ , 254 pages

 

(… it’s gotten some nice comments from readers…)

 

Available direct from Truman, 7210 Helmick Road, Monmouth, OR 97361;
(Send check or cash, or email and I’ll ship with invoice.)  (It’s 2/3 paid for now, a year in)
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“Oregon’s leading student of music of the Oregon Trail era…”  (and I like several kinds of music).
Hundreds of concerts, fiddle or fiddle and vocal; solo or with True West Band / friends; hundreds of dances called.

Independence Saturday market on the first warm day of Spring last year.  Played non-stop, 2 1/2 hours.   Tried not to get in a rut: at the end of each tune or song, go straight to the next, but change key, and genre, and alternate between tunes and songs with lyrics. Later, I wrote down the tune list, 60+ of ’em…  tunelist  here

There are a few old video song links near the bottom of this page.

 

 

 

 

CALENDAR Lots of old calendars here. –

Starting 2019:-
(left out some in January)
Feb 16 – with OOTFA at State Capitol for “Oregon’s Birthday” – in Senate room; my contributions will be Oregon Trail songs
March 6, Tuesday – Mardi Graas feast/.fiddle: Max’s Shop, Mission Mill, Salem 12-3
Mar 10, Sat — OTF: for Sons of Norway , Scandinavian tunes, W Salem 1-3
Mar 30, Sat – Polk Folklife Fest, at WOU Student Center, Monmouth; 10-6, 2 things: hosting general jams in the “jam room”, and my “led jam”session 12-1: Music of the Oregon Trail.
Apr 3, Thursday – Retirement Center, Albany, afternoon
April 12, Fri, 10-12 – for OOTFA State Convention in Rickreall, presenting “Elements that formed Old Time Fiddle in Oregon” , samples from 8 to 10 traditions
May 25-26 – Northwest Folklife Festival, Seattle

2018:

Jan 9 – Homecoming Dance (squares!), Crosshill High School; music by Jon & Shannon Zilko
Feb 4 – 1/4 of an Oregon Trail Music concert at Brown House, Stayton: “Brief History of Old Time Fiddle”
Feb 11, 13, 14, 15: Four jams! Keizer; Fat Tuesday cajun party at Mission Mill; Monmouth Senior Center; Luna’s jam at OWC, Corvallis
March 31, Sat – Polk Folklife Festival, at WOU, Monmouth; 10-6  (hosting jams in the “jam room”).
April 21 – solo fiddle at Independence Saturday Market, 2 1/2 hours 53 songs or tunes, tunelist  here
May 12, Sat – Independence Market A.M.; Mission Mill at 1; with OOTFA there 2:30- near 4
May 14, Sat – Square Dance at Crosshill School, with Worn-out Shoes
May, memorial day weekend– NW Folklife Festival, Seattle ..
June 15, 16 — all day, Rose City Book Fair, Portland
June 23, Sat, 10-11:30 – at Camas Mill Schoolhouse, Junction City: Pioneer Heritage Festival
June 23, Sat, 2-4:30 – Concert at Brown House, Stayton, 2-4:30; Mark Babson delivers Violin pieces from various periods; then my explanatory romp through 9 different sub-genres of Fiddle Music…
June 30 – May 12, Sat – Independence Market … unless:
July 3 ….  At the St. Paul Rodeo: 3-4 pm, then during breaks of Bronco Billy Band to 7
July 14, Sat. 6 pm – Dance, Champoeg State Park, at the barn, 6-8:30, with “Worn-Out Shoes”
July 17, Wed., 2 pm. Waverly Place, Albany.
Aug 11, Sat. – Dance, Champoeg SP, at the barn, “Worn Out Shoes”; 100 people came…
Sept. 8 Sat – Square dance party, private, Oak Grove Road 3-5; with Worn-Out Shoes.
Sept 15, Sat – Brown House Heritage Center, Stayton, for an antique car rally (!), 1-3 pm. solo.
Sept 22-23 – Party at our house – Big ate E one! pre-party cider squeezing around noon, our apple trees… then all night music; some folks will camp in the orchard.
Sept 29, Sat – Brunk House, by Hwy 22 E of Rickreall, 11-1, solo, for Heritage Soc. Apple Festival.
Oct. 1, Sun – Minto Brown Growers’ End of Season party – 3/8 mile up Brown Island Road off S. River Road; tour at 4 pm, food & music at 5, then old-time dances; with Jon & Shannon Zilka
Oct 3, Wed – Waverly Place, Albany, solo 2 pm
Oct. 26, Fri – “Jane Austen Steampunk Ball” – fun! With Jon and Shannon Zilka on guitar and 1st fiddle

Dec. 12 Wed – the annual dance for the Guadelupe, St Patrick‘s Church, Independence, 7 – (& great food after).  .  About the Dancers for Guadelupe Celebrations [[Description & 2-3 photos] Brief sample here.

 

The eclipse centered over our house, so we had an all-weekend nonstop party.  Moon songs at eclipse party: Bruce Reid, human jukebox, had an incredible store of songs mentioning the moon.   Here’s some of us: Vivian Williams, Adam Price, myself  & Suzi, W. B. Reid, Kevin; but we were all one-upped when after a few hours we reached a lull and an 11-year old stranger who was camping in the pasture stepped to the piano where she played a clean, simple and elegant Claire de la Lune.
Poke here for 2017 

poke here for some of 2016

 poke here for 2015 –,  Lots of old calendars here. … & a few old photos

  • Solo fiddling and calling, an 1800’s Reel at Newell House, – Suzi on the left – you should have seen that gray skirt when the lady twirled in the center of “Bird in the Cage”

    Local Jams:
    Appalachian fiddle tunes: There is a very nice Appalachian fiddle tunes jam in Keizer on the second Sunday of each month. Inquire here, or of Roger Applegate.   Here’s a few recent tunelists.   Same group sometimes at our house on the Third Sunday, not summer, erratically. About half of the core group of 15 or so musicians show up at any particular jam. Inquire.
    General fiddle jam: in Corvallis, 1st Thursdays of each month; at Old World Deli, 7 pm; hosted by OOTFA … A good varied jam.
    Appalachian fiddle tunes: in Corvallis, 3rd Thursdays of each month; at Old World Deli, 7 pm; hosted by John Luna (when he’s not in town, it is not)
    Second Wednesday every month, a few friends practice/perform for a small but regular audience at the Monmouth Senior Center, 6:30 – 8pm; musicians and listeners welcome!
    General jam: Guthrie Park, 3 miles south of Dallas at 4320 Kings Valley Hwy, has been running every Friday night, 6:30-10 pm, for 28 years (I never missed a Friday in the first ten years or so).  [[Note — I stopped last year for a while after a musician dropped guns on the stage… I go sometimes again]].  A large jam – 10 to 20 musicians each week, a large and faithful audience of folks listening or dancing.  Strict rotation around the circle of musicians. Music includes country-western, older pop, folk, fiddle tunes and waltzes. If weather is nice, fiddlers may move out to the porch.]]
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Ancient History department:

True-WilsonvillePosterFull1

 

—->
“An Appalachian Christmas” with Jane Keefer and Tim Crosby was such a fun gig!  Asked to present a one-hour program,      we studied, practiced once and nailed it: simply  great: widely varied, perfect; many groups around the valley would love to have it  —  if only they knew about it!

 

 

 

Appalachian Christmas AdAn Appalachian Christmas – “Presenting three of the valley’s most respected folk musicians Truman Price, Jane Keefer, Tim Crosby.”   details
  • About the Oregon Trail music and lore:
    .   30 years ago, back to Oregon after many years of random fiddling, including a  few years in Western Virginia, I was asked to put together a 40-minute set of authentic music of the Oregon Trail as introductions for 16 performances of the Oregon Trail Pageant at Champoeg.  I researched, and with Jane Keefer recorded a cassette collection (which became a CD, Songs of the Oregon Trail);  then did 16 performances there each year.  Later the Oregon Historical Society sponsored 50+ one-hour presentations, schools, libraries, conventions; usually solo, sometimes Adam Truman 8duo or trio with True West Band.  Another 24 times solo for Oregon Trial Interpretive Center near Baker. And many more, from a few songs to two hours +… (The two-hour set seemed short!)
    .   Might also mention OT dance: have called over 100 evenings of dance for various adultish groups; because of that, taught old-time dances to about 15,000 kids grades 1-6, in 60+ schools, through Artists in Schools.
  •                                                —> Seattle concert with son Adam Price – fine banjoist, person! —>
  • <— Aside: For 25 years I’ve been the fiddler for the annual Guadelupe dances on/around Dec. 12 with the local Mexican community.  A wonderful experience.
  • Anyone can attend, and the food is super.
  • Here’s a page  About the Dances for Guadelupe Celebrations
  • and a brief sample of one: Pico Perico
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  • Some Youtube Video: Solos filmed by Josh Meredith & Bob Zybach near Corvallis 2005, part of a presentation on the old California-Oregon Trail which ran through that meadow.  Note: We had just spent two hours finding camas roots and grubbing blackberry vines out of the watershed, and were all kinda muddy!  (“Out standing n the field!”)

    A few nice verses of June Apple filmed by Ray Leach at Centralia Campout August 2005, trio with Adam Price and Tom Peloso (of Modest Mouse):

    These are with Adam on banjo, at Northwest Folklife Festival, Seattle, Memorial Day Weekend 2007:

    Most of these videos, and a few others, are on YouTube, some with nice comments – poke here, or just enter the words “old time fiddle” and see what comes up!—

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    Two CD’s:

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    Lessons: I’ve taught, beginning violin to advanced fiddle, for many years. Several former students have become impressive players and bandleaders. Also have enjoyed doing a workshop “fiddle for violinists” , seven times for NW Folklife in Seattle and also for the Oregon Oldtime Fiddlers annual convention in Rickreall; always with good feedback.

    SameThinginJune2 StopScaringTheCows2
     From the desk window in Early Spring . . . . . . Same thing in June, with organic Jerseys . . . . . .   Hey, Stop Scaring My Cows!
    Books:  We make part of our living selling antiquarian books, especially children’s literature, and Suzanne’s site at http://www.oldchildrensbooks.com is really nice.  Also I offer a few hundred titles of folk music which can be searched here. (not my personal collection of a few hundred more)  For more titles, change the keywords… e.g. “music” or “fiddle”.
    truprice at gmail dot com