Bill Cheatum (1)

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X:1 T:Cheat 'Em T:Bill Cheatum [1] S:Red Headed Fiddlers (Dallas-Ft. Worth, Texas) N:A.L. "Red" Steeley (1893-1969) and J. Warner "Red" Graham M:C| L:1/8 D:County 515, Red Headed Fiddlers - "Mountain Banjo Songs & Tunes" (1968) D:Document DOCD-8038 Red Headed Fiddlers - "Texas Fiddle Bands, vol. 1" (1998) D:Brunswick 470 (78 RPM), Red Headed Fiddlers (1929) F:https://www.slippery-hill.com/recording/cheat-em Z:Transcribed by Andrew Kuntz K:A [A_E]-|[=A2=E2][E2c2][E2c2][E2c2]|cBAc BAFB|A-d[d2f2][d2f2][d2=f2]-|[d^f]edf ecBA| E2[E2c2][E2c2][Ec]B|cBAc BAFA|Bcde fgaf|1edcB A2:|2 ecBA A2|| |:"*"ef|ecea fagf |ecea- abaf|ecea fagf|edcB AFEF| +slide+[e2e2]ea fedf|ecef a2(3efg|agab afed|cABA A2:| P:Substitutions: "*" [d2e2]-|[e2e2] ea fefa|gegb agaf|ecea fagf| ...



BILL CHEATUM [1]. AKA – "Bill Cheatem," "Bill Cheatham," "Cheatum," "Cheat 'Em," "Old Bill Cheatum." American, Reel (cut time). USA, widely known. A Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AABB (most versions): AA'BB' (Kaufman). Krassen and others note this is a common fiddle tune throughout the Southern part of the United States, where it probably originated (Christeson says he did not hear the tune in Missouri until the mid-1940's). The title ("Old Bill Cheatum") appears in a list of traditional Ozarks Mountains fiddle tunes compiled by musicologist/folklorist Vance Randolph, published in 1954. The tune was a fiddle contest "category" tune in 1899 in Gallatin, Tenn.—each fiddler would play a version, with the best rendition being awarded a prize (C. Wolfe, The Devil's Box, vol. 14, No. 4, 12/1/80). The earliest sound recording of the tune is by Texas fiddler Eck Robertson, in 1922, played as part of his "Brilliancy Medley." The Allen Brothers recorded it as "Cheat 'Em," as did the Dallas, Texas-based Red Headed Fiddlers. Tennessee's "Fiddlin' Arthur Smith" recorded it in 1940.

Some note similarities with Charter Oak <div class="mw-ext-score" data-midi="/w/images/lilypond/7/0/70mxratuh5uvo2sazwbywuhdmxkkv51/70mxratu.midi"><img src="/w/images/lilypond/7/0/70mxratuh5uvo2sazwbywuhdmxkkv51/70mxratu.png" width="617" height="61" alt=" X:1 M:2/4 L:1/8 K:A c/B/ | AA,CE | A>B c/A/B/c/ | AA,CE | B,(A/B/) c/e/B/c/ | "/></div> a reel printed in Ryan's Mammoth Collection (1883).

Additional notes

Sources for notated versions: - Floyd Smith (Cole County, Missouri) [Christeson]: Max Collins (Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma) [Thede]: Krassen credits the Texas based Red Headed Fiddlers and Henry Reed (Va.) for the version he gives in his book: A.L. Steeley & the Red Headed Fiddlers [Kaufman]; Glen Bilyeu (1919–1977, Taney County, Missouri) [Beisswenger & McCann].

Printed sources : - Beisswenger & McCann (Ozarks Fiddle Music), 2008; p. 171. Brody (Fiddler's Fakebook), 1983; p. 41. R.P. Christeson (Old Time Fiddler's Repertory, vol. 1), 1973; No. 34, p. 24. Kaufman (Beginning Old Time Fiddle), 1977; p. 61. Krassen (Appalachian Fiddle), 1973; p. 68. Lowinger (Bluegrass Fiddle), 1974; p. 16. Phillips (Fiddle Case Tunebook: Old Time Southern), 1989; p. 5. Phillips (Traditional American Fiddle Tunes, vol. 1), 1994; p. 24. Reiner (Anthology of Fiddle Styles), 1977; p. 31. Silberberg (93 Tunes I Didn't Learn at the Tractor Tavern), 2004; p. 5. Thede (The Fiddle Book), 1967; p. 103 (appears as "Bill Cheatem").

Recorded sources: -Alcazar Dance Series ALC 202, Sandy Bradley – "Potluck & Dance Tonite!" (1979). Brunswick 470 (78 RPM), Red Headed Fiddlers (1929). County 515, Red Headed Fiddlers - "Mountain Banjo Songs & Tunes" (1968). County 542, Blind Joe Mangrum (b. 1853, Paducah, Ky.) – "Nashville: the Early String Bands, vol. 2" (originally recorded in 1928 for Victor). County 719, Kenny Baker – "Portrait of a Bluegrass Fiddler" (1968). Document DOCD-8038 Red Headed Fiddlers - "Texas Fiddle Bands, vol. 1" (1998). Folkways 2492, New Lost City Ramblers – "String Band Instrumentals" (1964. Learned from recordings of the Red Headed Fiddler and Eck Robertson). Front Hall 010, Fennigs All Star String Band – "The Hammered Dulcimer Strikes Again." Kicking Mule 202, John Burke – "Fancy Pickin' and Plain Singing." Library of Congress recording, 1939, W.A. Bledsoe, Meridian, Mississippi. Mountain 301, Kyle Creed – "Blue Ridge Style Square Dance Time." Rounder 0016, Vasser Clements – "Crossing the Catskills." Rounder 0093, Jerry Douglas – "Fluxology." Rounder 7002, Graham Townsend – "Le Violin/The Fiddle." Victor 40298A (78 RPM), Eck Robertson – "Brilliancy Medley."

See also listing at:
Jane Keefer's Folk Music Index: An Index to Recorded Sources [1]
Hear the Red Headed Fiddlers 1929 recording at Slippery Hill [2] and youtube.com [3]



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