Click on the button below to get the PDF download for this tab delivered to you, and get 2 new tunes and tabs sent to you every week!
“Most people down here just like to hear the bluegrass and stuff like that now, but I like the old-timey tunes because it seems like they got a lonesomer sound.”
– Buddy Thomas
This week’s tune entered the old time canon by way of fiddler Buddy Thomas. According to his story, a man with a “chin that looked like a briar” came through town playing this tune on his fiddle.
While the history of this tune is simple and straightforward, Thomas’s is anything but.
Born in Kentucky in abject poverty (“so poor that even the poor folks said we were poor”), sick for most of his childhood with limited medical care, and passing away far too soon at the age of 39, his story is equal parts heartbreak and inspiration.
Heartbreaking on account of hardships no one should have to endure.
Inspiring in that, in spite of those unforgiving conditions, he not only felt compelled to make music, but to master the fiddle as well (you can hear his virtuosity for yourself on his solo album, “Kitty Puss.”).
Rather than me telling you more of his story, I highly recommend reading this short autobiographical piece. You’ll get a much richer account with Buddy’s own words.
I think there’s something we can all learn from his story.
I know from personal experience there are times when I feel less like making music.
I also know that those are the times where I most need to make it.
aDADE tuning, Brainjo level 3-4
(NOTE: The Tab-Walkthrough Workshop for this tune will be held on June 18. Click here to learn more about and view a sample of the tab walk-through videos. Click here to learn more, and see the full schedule.)
Notes on the Tab
Notes in parentheses are “skip” notes. To learn more about these, check out my video lesson on the subject.
For more on reading tabs in general, check out this complete guide to reading banjo tabs.
[RELATED: Level 2 arrangements and video demos for the Tune (and Song!) of the Week tunes are now available as part of the Breakthrough Banjo course. Learn more about it here.
Click here for a current list of all the clawhammer songs and tunes currently available inside of The Vault