Gold Rush

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GOLD RUSH. Bluegrass, Breakdown. Composed by legendary bluegrass mandolin player Bill Monroe and his fiddler at the time, Byron Berline (The late Monroe had over 63 fiddlers in his group at various times), around 1967. It is only Monroe's name on the credits, however. After graduating college, Berline played with Monroe for about seven months before being drafted into the US army. "Gold Rush" was recorded by Mike Yates in 1980 from the playing of fiddler Pug Allen of Stuarts Draft, Augusta County, Va. At the time Allen was adamant that he knew the tune years before Monroe's recording was issued. Dave Barton relays that Missouri fiddler Fred Stoneking maintains the tune was modeled after a local tune called "Burt County Breakdown," and suspects that Berline (who is from Oklahoma) may have reworked an older tune he heard. The "Burt County" title and tune was sourced to Burt County, Nebraska, fiddler Bob Walters (by Howard Marshall), however, and the breadth of its dissemination is unknown.

Source for notated version:

Printed sources:

Recorded sources: Caney Mountain Records CLP 228, Lonnie Robertson (Mo.), c. 1971-72. County 2705, Kenny Baker - "Master Fiddler." Musical Traditions MTCD321-2, Pug Allen (et al) - "Far in the Mountains" (2002). Philo 1023, "Jay & Lyn: Songs, Ballads & Fiddle Tunes" (1975). Voyager 340, Jim Herd - "Old Time Ozark Fiddling."

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