Truman Price

Fiddle and …

    An Appalachian Christmas … at Willamette Lutheran Retirement Home, Keizer, Dec 2014.

A printed program was distributed – here with some annotations.

Go Tell it on the Mountain (chorus; 1 verse; chorus; “everybody!” ; chorus)
Go, tell it on the mountain   Over the hills and everywhere…  3 verses and chorusses, based on Fannie Lou Hamer’s bluesy rendition
“Hello- So nice to be here.,… we’ll have some fiddle tunes, some carols, a ballad, all with Appalachian references …

first let’s play a fiddle tune…
Frosty Morning — (Jane, guitar, Tim, Banjo; Tru, fiddle)

“Why the fiddle tune here? —
Introduction to the idea of the Old Christmas on the lower end of the Blue Ridge, Dec 25 -Jan 5; how they’d square dance at a different house
every night for 12 days, and the last tune they always played was:

Breaking Up Christmasanother lively fiddle tune; four short verses, inc.:
Way down yonder, long time ago, the old folks danced to the do-si-do.
Hooraw Jake, hooray John,  Breakin’ up Christmas all night long!
Way down yonder, down by the creek, I seen Santy Claus washing his feet
Santa Claus come, Santa Claus gone, Breaking up Christmas all night long…

As Joseph Was A -Walking
Tru, leading a cappella refrain (every other line is a refrain)
A carol, collected in Big Stony Gap, Virginia in 1933, – repeat the last line of every verse with me

When Joseph was an old man, an old man was he,
He married Virgin Mary, the queen of Gal-il-lee,
(echo!:) He married Virgin Mary, the queen of Gal-il-lee.  & 7 more verses.

“Let’s introduce another instrument, this is called the Appalachian dulcimer…”
Ode to Joy – Jane, dulcimer solo once through, then T&T join in, a bit
One more fiddle tune, Tim, then we’ll get into some carols…

(Tim introduces and plays) Christmas Morning (solo fiddle, or nearly)

Reading from Jean Ritchie’s autobiography (*inc. how they got up at 3 am, to go carolling until dawn!!) – – @ 3 minutes – a tearjerker!
( The carols mentioned in Jean Ritchie’s description of caroling in Viper, KY, are: Brightest and Best; Good Christian Men Rejoice; Wondrous Love; Noel; Silent Night; Midnight Clear; Once in Royal David’s City; Away in a Manger; Joy to the World)

“Let’s all do some caroling!  We’ll do only 1 or 2 verses of some… join in whenever you can!”
It Came Upon the Midnight Clear – G 1 verse (3 is possible!) … dulcimer & 2 fiddles for most
Oh Little Town of Bethlehem — G ; fiddles; 2 verses
Hark the Herald Angels Sing – G 1 verse
Good King Wenceslas – G all verses; 2 fiddles
Away in a Manger – G ; dulcimer lead + two fiddles
The First Nowell – D – 1 verse / 4 verses
Joy to the World – D 3 verses

“Let’s have another fiddle tune.  Anyone know who Saint Anne was?”
St. Anne’s Reel  (ANSWER:The mother of Mary: Jesus’ grandmother)

(Tim gives a good history of how Old Christmas came to be different in time, how the Scots-Irish held on to the older date even into the 18th century and brought it to Appalachia)

Tim, original: Dram For the Fiddler

Brief reading, from memory, from Ritchie @ washing up the Christmas dishes & her pa comin’ in with the Twelve Days song:

Twelve Days of Christmas, Entire audience – a cappella (Ritchie’s Appalachian version; words on the back of program… ‘leven pigs a-squealin’, down to “a parredge in a pear bush”)

Intro to Tru’s original tune, “After Christmas” — @ 1 minute
After Christmas – Dm; 3 fiddles

Silent Night – Jane solo in G, inst, the 2 verses & repeat verse?

We Wish You a Merry Christmas

Exactly one hour, although the applause went on…