Back to McCarroll's Breakdown
McCARROLL'S BREAKDOWN. Old-Time, Breakdown. USA, Eastern Tenn. Jimmy McCarroll was the fiddler for the eastern Tennessee string band the Roane County Ramblers, who recorded in the late 1920's. This tune was recorded in October, 1928 (released in 1929), in Johnson City, Tennessee, the band consisting at that time of Luke Brandon [guitar], Howard Wyatt [banjo], John Kelly [mandolin] and Jimmy McCarroll [fiddle]. According to liner notes to County 403 by Dave Freeman, "McCarroll's Breakdown" is the tune Jimmy used at most fiddle contests that he entered. he based the tune on Gid Tanner's version of "Bucking Mule."
McCarroll was born in 1892 in the Cumberland Mountains, and had a farm near Oak Ridge, although he also spent some times in the coal mines. He was the son of two fiddlers and father of four, known as something of an eccentric, and claimed Cherokee ancestry. McCarroll died in 1985, and still quite actively played until shortly before his death at age 93.
Source for notated version:
Recorded sources: Columbia 15438D (78 RPM), Roane County Ramblers (1929). County 403, "Roane County Ramblers" (origianlly recorded 1928).