Wait Till You Hear This One

Old-time fiddle tunes and sources

“Joseph Won the Coated Fiddle,” Cyril Stinnett

Here’s a link to the version I learned this tune from, played by the great Cyril Stinnett with, I think, Bob Christeson playing backup on field organ. More info below. Enjoy!

I have no idea what this title means, and the folklorist (Bob Christeson?) in the source recording sounds baffled when Stinnett says it. But it’s a great tune, perfect for festival season. It also meshes beautifully with the Missouri Turnaround chord progression, which you can hear in the source. I just learned it a few days ago, and this post ushers in a new era of the blog where I post tunes semi-spontaneously before they’re perfect and try not to talk them to death. 🙂 I also framed this video so my head isn’t visible, which allows me to get the camera closer for those who might want to try to see what my hands are doing. It’s also just more relaxing for me—does anyone who’s not an actor really like to look at themselves on film? I doubt it.

By the way, as far as bowing goes, all bets are off. Stinnett played left-handed—holding a normal fiddle in his right hand, upside down. So do whatever you want! I’ve tried to duplicate some of the slurs I like in his version, but there’s no way to duplicate his bowing. Quite freeing, really.


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5 thoughts on ““Joseph Won the Coated Fiddle,” Cyril Stinnett

  1. Someone pointed out that I shot this as a mirror image. Oops, that didn’t even occur to me! Normally I flip the image before shooting. I’ll do that in the future, unless I hear from people that they prefer it this way.

  2. David Cahn on said:

    Hey Dave, I asked Dwight Lamb about the title last time he was at fiddle tunes and he said that at fiddle contests sometimes the first prize was a fancy fiddle with a coat of arms painted on the back.

  3. Clyde Curley on said:

    Mirror image? Well, duh! I though for sure that you had done this purposefully, since Mr. Stinnett fiddled left-handed. (And more power to him!)

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