Annotation:Cuckoo's Nest (5) (The)

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X:1 T:Cuckoo's Nest [5] N:From the playing of Ed Haley (1885-1951, Ashland, northeast Kentucky), N:one of two distantly related tunes he called "Cuckoo's Nest" M:C| L:1/8 Q:"Quick" R:Reel N:Lots of little variations each time around. Haley was a very inventive fiddler. D:Rounder 1133/1134, Ed Haley - "Grey Eagle" (1997) D: Z:Transcribed by Andrew Kuntz K:D ((3[A,D][B,D][CD]|[DD])EDE FGA=c|dedB =cAAF|GFED =CDEF|EA,-A,A, A,2((3[A,D][B,D][CD]| [DD])EDE FGA=c|"*"d=cBB cAAF|GFED =CDEG|FDE^C D2:| Ac|d2d2d2 de|fded fdAB|=cccB c2cd|=cBAc BAGA| GBAG FAde-|fded fdAF|GFEC A,CEG|FD-D[CF]- [D2F2]Ac| d2[d2f2][d2f2][d2f2]|fded fdAB|=cdcB cedB|=cBAc BG-GA| BGAG FAde-|fded fdAF|GFED CDEG|FD-DE D2|| P:Substitutions "*"d=cBA BAAF||

CUCKOO'S NEST [5], THE. AKA and see "Good Ax Elve," "All Aboard," "Forty Pounds of Feathers in a Hornet's Nest." American, Reel (cut time). USA; southwestern Pa., West Virginia, northeastern Kentucky. A Mixolydian. Standard tuning (fiddle). AB. Bayard (1944) identifies these Pennsylvania collected versions as derived from the Irish original, some more true to the original than others, and notes that it enjoyed great popularity in southwestern Pa. His (A) version (from Emery Martin) represented the prevailing one in that region and he found published sets which indicated that this version was also known elsewhere. He gave a children's game rhyme collected in western Pennsylvania that ran:

Wire, briar, limberlock,
Three geese in a flock,
One flew east, and one flew west,
And one flew over the cuckoo's nest.

but said there was no proof that the rhyme was associated locally with this melody. The Pennsylvania versions differ from most Irish versions in that the latter often have three parts, of which parts two and three correspond to parts one and two in the Martin (western Pennsylvania) version. Bayard (1944) says "it has survived in this country where the first part as given in Irish sets does not occur, and is sometimes given the position of first part in the western Pennsylvania sets--as in our version B." Further differences are the American sets are more strongly mixolydian in character than many Irish ones, and while the Irish tune was sometimes used as a song air the American versions were not and it remained a dance tune there. Another version is in The American Veteran Fifer, No. 8. Guthrie Meade and Mark Wilson (1976) observe that northeastern Kentucky fiddler Ed Haley's version of the tune is similar to the one printed in Bayard's Hill Country Tunes and speculate that, since Bayard's version was collected in the Dunbar region of West Virginia, Haley (who was born in Logan County, W.Va., and travelled throughout the state) may have learned one of his (two) versions there also.

"The Cuckoo's Nest" has numerous variants and versions. A more complete discussion of the vicissitudes of the tune can be found at "annotation:Cuckoo's Nest (4) (The)."

Additional notes
Source for notated version : - Emery Martin, Dunbar, Pennsylvania, October 14, 1943 (learned from his father) [Bayard, 1944]: 10 southwestern Pa. fiddlers and fifers [Bayard, 1981].

Printed sources : - Bayard (Hill Country Tunes), 1944; No. 8a. Bayard (Dance to the Fiddle), 1981; No. 292A-J, pp. 245-248.

Recorded sources : - Rounder 1010, Ed Haley - "Parkersburg Landing" (1976). Rounder 1133, Ed Haley vol 2 - "Grey Eagle" (1997).

See also listing at :
Hear Ed Haley's home recording at Slippery Hill [1]

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