X:1 T:Kick Up the Devil on a Holiday M:2/4 L:1/8 B:Thomas F. Briggs - Briggs' Banjo Instructor (1855, Boston, Oliver Ditson Co., p. 23) Z:AK/Fiddler's Companion K:D A/d/|=cB/d/ AG|AA dA/d/|=cB/d/ AG|ED DA/d/| =cB/d/ AG|AA dA/d/|=c/A/B/G/ AG|ED Dz|| DA/d/ EG|A2 z B/d/|(=c/A/)c/d/ cc/d/|(=c/A/)c/d/ cc/d/| DA/d/ EG|AA d A/d/|(=cA) B/G/ AG|ED Dz!fermata!||
KICK UP THE DEVIL ON A HOLIDAY. AKA - "Kick Up Dee Debbel on a Holiday." American, Reel. D Mixolydian. Standard tuning (fiddle). AB. The tune was published by Thomas F. Briggs in his Briggs' Banjo Instructor (1855, Oliver Ditson Co., Boston). It may have been composed by Briggs and is often credited to him, although no composer credit is given with the tune itself in the volume. The frontispiece of the volume declares that tunes were composed and arranged by Briggs, but clearly there are tunes by many composers in the contents and the declaration is taken to mean that Briggs takes credit for the banjo arrangements for the tunes that do not bear his name. The original title, "Kick Up Dee Debbel on a Holiday" indicates the tune was intended for the blackface minstrel stage.
In the late 20th century the tune was "rediscovered" in Briggs by Alabama fiddler James Bryant and guitarist Carl Jones, who recorded it in the late 1990's. The Foghorn Stringband learned it from Bryan and recorded it in the new century, and, thus popularized, it has been absorbed into "old-time" repertory.