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Feb 8, 2017 - 10:34:24 AM
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Viper

USA

145 posts
Joined Jan 6, 2011

A few weeks ago, I posted about some information on Ward Jarvis. Some great FHO folks really came through with supplying additional recordings of Jarvis I was seeking. I'm dedicating this year to learning some Ward Jarvis tunes, specifically: 

  1. Head of the Creek
  2. Three Forks of Reedy
  3. Pretty Little Indian
  4. Cattle in the Cane
  5. Icy Mountain
  6. Tomahawk

I thought I would use this space to discuss my progress and challenges, as well as to get some input from some of the fiddling veterans around hear or anyone interested in talking about Ward Jarvis, his music and life in West Virginia and Ohio. 

I started off working on "Head of the Creek," on the Field Recorders Collective release FRC402. Here's my progress after a month of working on the tune. I will post other tunes as I go along, and perhaps updates on some tunes after more seasoning. I'd appreciate your comments and criticisms. Thanks for checking in. 


Feb 10, 2017 - 5:10:32 PM
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9708 posts
Joined Sep 23, 2009

Sounds good...you'd get more responses probably by putting these types on the soundoff forum, I think.  I like your playing...sounded good.

Feb 13, 2017 - 11:10:14 AM

Viper

USA

145 posts
Joined Jan 6, 2011

quote:
Originally posted by groundhogpeggy
 

Sounds good...you'd get more responses probably by putting these types on the soundoff forum, I think.  I like your playing...sounded good.


Thanks for the kind words, Peggy. I actually did post this in Sound Off, though apparently forgot to include the link to the tune. That error has been fixed. 

Feb 25, 2017 - 5:15:17 PM
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115 posts
Joined Jun 23, 2007

Ya played it good today Brad....Head of the Creek

Gotta learn that one.

Feb 28, 2017 - 7:26:49 PM

Viper

USA

145 posts
Joined Jan 6, 2011

quote:
Originally posted by Jasper
 

Ya played it good today Brad....Head of the Creek

Gotta learn that one.


Thanks, Guy. Still got some warts, but it was good to play it in front of others. 

Mar 13, 2017 - 11:10:22 AM

Viper

USA

145 posts
Joined Jan 6, 2011

Just thought I'd provide an update. I took another crack at recording myself. Any comments are welcome. 


Jun 8, 2017 - 10:45:48 AM
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Viper

USA

145 posts
Joined Jan 6, 2011

I thought I'd provide a bit of an update on my Year of Ward Jarvis. With June already a quarter of the way over, I should be well into learning my third Jarvis tune. Sadly, I took about a two-month break trying to learn some old chestnuts out of a book. Instead, I'm only now starting to feel more confident with my second Jarvis tunes, Icy Mountain. I'm working out a few kinks yet, but I'm hoping to get a recording of myself to share here somewhat soon.

I took my first crack at Icy Mountain at the end of April, but I didn't really buckle down on the tune until mid-May. Just this week, I finally had that "a-ha!" moment. I'm mostly working to learn these tunes by ear with slowdown software. However, I have used the Milliner-Koken book as a crutch to get some of the notes I can't quite catch, and I found a good video of David Bragger playing the tune that also helped me with fingering. 

There was also an archived discussion here at the FHO that discussed Icy Mountain, which helped me figure things out and which I can no longer find and/or link to, So thank you to whoever talked about how the B part (or parts) fit together. 

It's a slow-go. I hope by the end of the year that I'll be picking up these tunes a little faster. Maybe I can catch up and learn all six of the aforementioned tunes. 

Anyone else have a hard time learning Icy Mountain? Anyone have pointers on the other remaining tunes on my list? Anyone else a big fan of Ward Jarvis? 

Edited by - Viper on 06/08/2017 10:47:19

Jun 8, 2017 - 2:16:48 PM
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bsed Players Union Member

USA

3866 posts
Joined Jun 23, 2007

I like your playing. Particularly of note is the bowing shuffle you used in the B part. Good stuff, sounds authentic. Did Ward play about that tempo?

Jun 8, 2017 - 9:16:48 PM
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Dave S

USA

701 posts
Joined Oct 18, 2009

Had never heard of Icy Mtn before; it's a sweet tune. Another nice rendition here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nu9_mS6Ev00

Jun 9, 2017 - 11:05:26 AM
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Viper

USA

145 posts
Joined Jan 6, 2011

Thanks for the comments Bruce and Dave. I'm still behind on the tempo compared to Ward's playing. 

Here's a link to him playing "Head of the Creek."

And here's a link for "Icy Mountain."

The whole Field Recorders' album is available for download here

Jun 9, 2017 - 3:07:20 PM
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DougD

USA

8313 posts
Joined Dec 2, 2007

Both these tunes, as well as others by Ward Jarvis, can be found at our member Larry Warren's great collection of source recordings from the M-K Collection.  https://www.slippery-hill.com/collection/milliner-koken-collection-american-fiddle-tunes



And yes, he played it somewhat faster.


Jun 15, 2017 - 8:21:31 AM

Viper

USA

145 posts
Joined Jan 6, 2011

As promised, here's my the current status of my attempt to play Ward Jarvis' "Icy Mountain." Warts and all, this was my first attempt at recording this tune. I was playing in the hot and humid confines of my attic as my fingers were getting sweatier and sweatier. I'm still trying to get the B part(s). Any comments or constructive criticism is welcome. Thanks!


Jun 19, 2017 - 9:49:39 AM

Viper

USA

145 posts
Joined Jan 6, 2011

Took another pass at recording Icy Mountain. Refined B parts and worked more on intonation. Getting closer. 


Jul 27, 2017 - 4:57:36 PM
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Viper

USA

145 posts
Joined Jan 6, 2011

Here's where I stand on "Tomahawk," the third tune I've learned this year from the playing of Ward Jarvis. You can hear his version at the wonderful Slippery-Hill site: https://www.slippery-hill.com/recording/tomahawk-0


Sep 8, 2017 - 9:57:29 AM

Viper

USA

145 posts
Joined Jan 6, 2011

I return with two new recordings, made minutes ago during my lunch break. 

First is a second take of "Tomahawk." 

And then my first crack at recording "Pretty Little Indian," the fourth tune in my Year of Ward Jarvis project. (Here's the original.) I appreciate any thoughts on my playing. Thanks for listening. 


Edited by - Viper on 09/08/2017 09:58:45

Sep 8, 2017 - 3:04:20 PM
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boxbow Players Union Member

USA

2158 posts
Joined Feb 3, 2011

Tomahawk #2 lacks phrasing.  I listened to Icy Mountain #2 and Pretty Little Indian.  While the intonation, as you've pointed out, needs a lot of work, the phrasing made those tunes for me.  You can live and die by the digital tuner, but you can't buy phrasing. 

Edited by - boxbow on 09/08/2017 15:04:52

Sep 12, 2017 - 11:48:46 AM

Viper

USA

145 posts
Joined Jan 6, 2011

Thank you, Walter. I'll work on that. 

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