Monday, October 29, 2007

Who Needs A TV?

This is pretty much what it was like to sit around and play tunes. Except, there were girls. And no flutes. Or dobro. But we had a banjer player who was quite good. It sure is fun to watch Bruce Molsky here with friends. (I think the posting feature is officially gone from YouTube so click on one of those links and it should take you there.)

This tune is a favorite because of its name. I may have mentioned the story here before. I heard this tune first on the Cold Mountain soundtrack played by Stuart Duncan. It was, is, titled on the soundtrack, "Ruby with the Eyes that Sparkle." I thought, "What a sweet little tune. They must have written it for that movie."

A year or so later when I first got together with my good friend E, we were sitting around one afternoon playing tunes, and I heard this familiar lilting melody. I finally recognized it as "Ruby." But when I asked what it was, E said, "Oh, that's a tune called, 'Shove That Pig's Foot A Little Further Into the Fire.' " So much for the romance of civil war music!

Anyway, we did play this tune the other day, after I told my story about the incongruence of the names. Now I call this tune by its proper name first, and can almost play it on fiddle, mando, and certainly guitar.

When I finally woke up Sunday morning all recovered and needing to play through my blisters, I realized, this dog would not ever have hunted in my old life. Six or seven musicians showing up at my old house, each with two or three instruments, for a full 12-plus hours of making music, a sleepover, then more music before they hit the road? Right. It would have drowned out the game and I would have caught hell for it in subtle, passive aggressive ways until the next gathering (if I didn't get myself thrown out first).

So here's to the wonderful folks who let me in the circle, and to the hope that there will be many circles to come, at your house, my house, many houses. Playing music with other people, no matter how bad or good you think you are, is a beautiful thing to do on a cold rainy afternoon, or outdoors on a warm sunny day. It's what people did a hundred, two hundred years ago, before TV, before Wii, before we numbed ourselves with watching sports instead of playing them, before What Not To Wear. Come, wear whatever you want, bring your instruments and a covered dish (does Rachel Ray know what that is?) and sleeping bag and your long list of tunes. Bring your kids if you want, they can listen or play with my kids.

Let's just remember to write down what we played because trying to remember those tunes right now sure is kicking my e-string!


At October 30, 2007 1:21 PM, Anonymous E said...

Drowned out the game?, what game?, who's game?, the game is pretty lame, i quit, now i play tunes instead. lol!

what is WHAT NOT TO WEAR, and rachel ray? is that a tv show?

we were very pleased to have you join us having tunes, the tune orgy, mmm, lots of fun.

Come join us again everytime!

Lovin you!

At October 30, 2007 7:58 PM, Blogger Mando Mama said...

LOL! It was kind of a tune orgy, but what good fun and the time flew by. My fingers were ok the next day but my brain sure hurt! Looking forward to more tunes!



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