X:1 % T:Briar Picker Brown M:C L:1/8 Z:AK/Fiddler's Companion K:D fe | d2B2A2F2 | ABAF E2 AB | d2 dd edeg | fedA BABc | d2B/d/BA2F2 | ABAF E2 FE | D2 dA Bded | [de] [d2f2] [de] [d2f2] :| |: de | f2 af a2 aa | beae fe d2 | f af a2 ff | eBdB ABde | f2 af a2 aa | beae fdBd | fgfe dBAB | e d2d [d2f2 ] :|
BRIARPICKER BROWN. Old-Time, Breakdown. USA; Ky., Ohio. D Major. Standard or ADae tunings (fiddle). AABB. Presumably one picks briars as a consequence of hunting; either from oneself, or from any canines involved. It should be noted that 'briar' and 'briar-hopper' were a derogatory terms for whites from Kentucky and West Virginia (from the briar bushes found in Appalachian states) who came to look for work in the factories of Ohio. The melody is known as a Kentucky tune in modern times, largely due to an influential recording by fiddler Buddy Thomas (who died at age 39 in the mid-1970's). Thomas had the tune from an elderly Portsmouth, Ohio, fiddler named Morris Allen. The tune structurally resembles West Virginia fiddler Clark Kessinger's "Everyone to the Puncheon," and Allen was in fact a friend of Kessinger. Jeff Titon (2001) points out the low part of the tune is the same as that of the English country dance melody "Rose Tree (The)."