Wow! The days here at the end of the year are clicking off fast. Hitting day 300 is a big milestone for me in this project.
It’s fitting to celebrate this milestone with Steve Eulberg, who has been with me throughout this project, and has been great to work with on our current CD project (to be released on December 14th.) Before recording this, Steve and I listened to all of the tracks of our CD and put together our final notes for the mixing engineer.
I hadn’t heard Tater Patch before today, but Steve had, so that’s good enough. Enjoy!
Tater Patch according to Fiddler’s Companion
TATER PATCH. Old‑Time, Breakdown. USA, North Carolina. A Mixolydian. AEae or Standard tuning. AAB (Brody): AABBB (Johnson, Phillips). A Blue Ridge Mountain regional dance piece. Mt. Airy, western North Carolina, fiddler Tommy Jarrell related to musician and folklorist Mike Seegar:
There was a fellow by the name of Ike Leonard…he was a working
in the potato patch and this tune come in his mind. And he just
throwed down what ever he was a doing and went to the house
and got his banjo and played it. It must have happened about
1910…before 1920. I got it through (his uncle) Charlie Barnett
Lowe…along in the ’20’s. Charlie Barnett’s brother married Ike
Leonard’s widow so I got the straight story to ‘The Tater Patch
Tune’…the way it was told to me now.
In The Portland Collection the tune is directly attributed to Jarrell’s frequent playing partner banjo player Charlie Lowe, with the same story (i.e. that the tune came to Charlie while he was out in the field digging potatoes and that he ran to the house, got out his banjo and played it). This latter attribution comes from Mt. Airy region fiddler Ernest East. Sources for notated versions: Ruthie Dornfeld (Seattle, Washington) [Phillips]; Paula Walters (Corvalis, Oregon) [Songer]. Brody (Fiddler’s Fakebook), 1983; pg. 273. Johnson (Kitchen Musician No. 2: Old-Timey Fiddle Tunes), 1982 (revised 1988 & 2003). Phillips (Traditional American Fiddle Tunes), vol. 1, 1994; pg. 238. Songer (Portland Collection), 1997; pg. 192. County 778, Tommy Jarrell ‑ “Pickin’ on Tommy’s Porch” (1984). Rounder 0045, Highwoods String Band‑ “Dance All Night.”