Cumberland Gap (4)

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X:1 T:Cumberland Gap [4] M:C| L:1/8 Q:"Moderately Quick" R:Reel S:Edden Hammons (1875-1955, Pocahontas County, W.Va.) N:From a 1947 field recording F: Z:Transcribed by Andrew Kuntz K:G Bc|d2 {c}BA GBAc|Bdde d2Bc|d2{c}BA GBAG|EGGA G2AB| d2{c}BA GBAc|Beef efgf|dB{c}BA GBAG|EGGA G2:| |:D2|g2 ga ge d2|eaab a2ga|baba g2d2|edef g2d2| egga ged2|eaab a2ga|baba g2d2|edef g2d2| ed (f/e/d) g3g-|| P:1st strain, 2nd time around: [M:2/4]gage |[M:C|]dcBA GBAc| Bdde d2Bc|d2 (c/B/A) GBAG|EGGA [G,2G2]AB|

CUMBERLAND GAP [4]. Old-Time, Bluegrass; Breakdown. USA, Kentucky, West Virginia. G Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AB (Titon): AAB (Phillips/1994): AA'B (Phillips/1989): AABB' (Krassen): AABBC (Phillips/1994).

Leonard Rutherford & Dick Burnett
Jeff Titon (2001) believes source Leonard Rutherford [1] (c 1900-1954) may have learned this tune from African-American fiddler Cuje Bertram, who was a friend and sometimes informal playing partner and stand-in. Rutherford recorded the tune for Gennett Records in Richmond, Indiana, in 1928 with long-term playing partner Dick Burnett, with whom he was together with for some thirty-five years, and with guitarist Byrd Moore. Gennett released the record with "Moore, Burnett & Rutherford" credited on the label, and also issued it on their subsidiary label, Supertone, albeit as performed by "Southern Kentucky Mountaineers." Titon has found the tune title among those included in the 1915 Berea, Kentucky, tune lists and in records of Berea fiddle contests for 1919, 1920 and 1924.

Pocahontas County, West Virginia, fiddler Edden Hammons (1875-1955), born a generation earlier than Rutherford, played a similar version of "Cumberland Gap," albeit in two parts. The second strain of Hammons' version is quite similar to the second strain of the Irish reel "Tom Ward's Downfall."

Additional notes

Sources for notated versions: - Leonard Rutherford (Monticello, Wayne County, south-central Ky., 1928) [Phillips/1989, Titon]: Paul Warren with Flat and Scruggs and the Foggy Mountain Boys [Phillips/1994]: Jeff Goehring with the Red Mules [Phillips/1994]: Charlie Higgins (Galax, Va) and Uncle Am Stuart (Tenn.) [Krassen].

Printed sources : - Krassen (Appalachian Fiddle), 1973; p 58 (includes 2 'A' part variations). Phillips (Fiddle Case Tunebook: Old Time Southern), 1989; p. 15. Phillips (Traditional American Fiddle Tunes, vol. 1), 1994; pp. 63 & 64. Titon (Old Time Kentucky Fiddle Tunes), 2001; No. 20, p. 64.

Recorded sources: - County 527, Leonard Rutherford & R.D. Burnett – "Old-Time Fiddle Classics, vol. 2" (reissue). Document DOCD-5631, Cuje Bertram et al – "Black Fiddlers" (1999). Document DOCD-8025, Burnett & Rutherford (reissue). Gennett 6706 (78 RPM), Burnett and Rutherford (1928). Morning Star 45003, Leonard Rutherford/Dick Burnett – "Wink the Other Eye: Old Time Fiddle Band Music from Kentucky, vol. 1" (1980. Originally recorded 1928).

See also listing at:
Hear Moore, Burnett & Rutherford's 1928 recording at Slippery Hill [2] and at [3]
Hear Edden Hammons' 1947 field recording at Slippery Hill [4]

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