Indian Cotton Jig

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X:1 T:Indian Cotton Jig M:2/4 L:1/8 R:Reel B:Coes Album of Jigs and Reels, something new, for professional and amateur violinists, B:leaders of orchestras, quadrille bands, and clog, reel and jig dancers; consisting of a B:Grand Collection of entirely New and Original Clog-Hornpipes, Reels, jigs, B:Scotch Reels, Irish Reels and Jigs, Waltzes, Walk-Arounds, etc. (1876, p. 8) N:Coes performed with the San Francisco Minstrels in California from 1852 to 1859. Z:AK/Fiddler’s Companion K:G (3D/E/F/|G/>G/G/>B/ A/>G/E/>D/|G/>A/B/>=c d2|(3e/f/g/ d>g e/>d/B/>G/|z/c/B/>G/ A/>G/~E/>F/| G/>G/G/>B/ A/>G/E/>D/|G/>A/B/>=c/ d2|(3e/f/g/ d/>g/ e/>d/B/>G/|A/>c/B/>A/ G:| |:f|g/>e/f/>d/ e/>d/B/>d/|g/>e/f/>d/ e>f|{a}g/>e/f/>d/ e/>d/B/>G/|A/>c/B/>G/ A/>G/E/>F/| G/>G/G/>B/ A/>G/~E/>D/|G/>A/B/>=c/ d2|(3e/f/g/ d/>g/ e/>d/B/>G/|A/>c/B/>A/ G:|]



INDIAN COTTON JIG. American, Schottishe or Hornpipe (2/4 time). G Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AABB. The melody appears in George H. Coes’ 1876 volume entitled Coes Album of Jigs and Reels, something new, for professional and amateur violinists, leaders of orchestras, quadrille bands, and clog, reel and jig dancers; consisting of a Grand Collection of entirely New and Original Clog-Hornpipes, Reels, jigs, Scotch Reels, Irish Reels and Jigs, Waltzes, Walk-Arounds, etc.. Coes was a one-time blackface minstrel performer who performed with the San Francisco Minstrels in California from 1852 to 1859. His book contains a number of 'jigs', referring not to the Irish 6/8 time tune, but rather a syncopated duple-time banjo-tune. Several such 2/4 jigs are also to be found in Ryan's Mammoth Collection, published some eight years later.

As Chris Bayer points out in his book The Miner's Farewell--on the trail of gold rush song and dance (1997, p. 132), the melody is "an early version of the tune later known as "Off to California (1)," although it may be the other way around as "Off to California (1)" predates "Indian Cotton Reel" (having been collected in Britain in the mid-19th century). It resembles "Freemont's Reel" in the [Peter] Beemer Ms." [central Idaho, mid-1860's] finds Seattle fiddler and music historian Vivian Williams. Bayer suspects the title could be associated with the cotton trade from British-held India, whose entrepreneurs found a hungry American market when the Southern cotton trade was interrupted by the American Civil War. It is also possible that it dates from a decade prior, states the author, suggesting that Coes could have learned the tune in California before he left the minstrel troupe in 1859.


Additional notes



Printed sources : - George H. Coes (Coes Album of Jigs and Reels, something new, for professional and amateur violinists, leaders of orchestras, quadrille bands, and clog, reel and jig dancers; consisting of a Grand Collection of entirely New and Original Clog-Hornpipes, Reels, jigs, Scotch Reels, Irish Reels and Jigs, Waltzes, Walk-Arounds, etc.), 1876, p. 8.






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