This week's tune is Betsy Anne, a waltz I wrote for my friend Betsy Lehman upon receiving her PhD from the University of Akron. I met Betsy many years ago at a contra dance in Cleveland, and we used to see each other often at dances. If memory serves me, Betsy and I also bumped into each other at the Dance Flurry Festival in Saratoga Springs, NY. That was many years ago. We often liked to share a waltz together at dances, and that inspired me compose this waltz for Betsy.
Betsy recently became engaged...congratulations, Betsy!
I have introduced this waltz to the Old-Time community at various festivals I attend around the country. I was honored that Lynn Hill requested we play it last year at the Worley-Gardner Old-Time Music Festival in Morgantown, WV, and she has introduced it to her community at the Roanoke Old-Time jams in Roanoke, VA. I hope by sharing Betsy Anne Waltz as Old-Time TOTW #87 that more people are exposed to it and play it. A tune means nothing if it is not played. Let's see if we can get this played far and wide--even in Europe. I know there are many Old-Time TOTW followers outside of the United States.
I wrote Betsy Anne Waltz in the key of D, but for this recording we are tuned down a whole step from high bass tuning on fiddle (so I am at GCGD here). I suppose it can be played in the key of C in standard tuning, but I have never tried it that way. If you want to play it in D, I'm sure you can pitch bend it...but perhaps you'll try it with D fingerings tuned low. It's really fun that way!
Joining me are friends Stephen Rapp on banjo (Kent, OH), and Sean Fen on guitar (Marion, OH).
Subscribe to my YouTube channel and join my Old-Time TOTW group on Facebook:
'Grey Eagle' 1 day
'Online Fiddle Lessons' 4 days
'Oldtime Central' 4 days