Ring the Banjo

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X:1 % T:Ring the Banjo M:2/4 L:1/8 B:Kerr – Merry Melodies, vol. 3, No. 396 (c. 1880’s) Z:AK/Fiddler’s Companion K:G d|dBGA|B d2 d|edBG|A3B|G>ABc|d g2e| d>cAB|1 g3:|2 G/D/E/F/ G/A/B/c/|||:d2 d>d|B d2 d|edBG| A3 D|G>ABc|d g2e|d>cAB|1 G/D/E/F/ G/A/B/c/:|2 G3||



RING THE BANJO. American, Minstrel Air (2/4 time). G Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AA'BB'. A song composed in 1851 by American songwriter Stephen Foster [1] (1826-1864). The words (sometimes rendered in dialect, as in "De time is nebber dreary if de darkey nebber groans") go:
Stephen Foster

The time is never dreary if you don't ever moan;
The ladies never weary with the rattle of the bones.
Then come again Suzanna, by gas-light or the moon;
We'll strum the old piano, when the banjo's out of tune.

CHORUS:
Ring ring the banjo, I like that good old song,
Come again my true love, oh why you been so long.

Oh never count the bubbles, while there's water in the spring
You won't have no troubles, while you've got this song to sing.
The beauties of creation, will never lose there charm.
While I roam the old plantation, with my true love on my arm.

Once I was so lucky, my master set me free
I went to old Kentucky, to see what I could see.
I could not go no further, I returned to masters door,
I love him all the harder, I'll go away no more.

Early in the morning, on a lovely summer day,
My master sent me a warning, he'd like to hear me play.
On the banjo tapping, I come with dulcet strain;
Master fall a napping, he'll never wake again.

My love, I'll have to leave you,While the rivers running high;
But never can I deceive you, So don't you wipe your eye.
I'm going to make some money; But I'll come another day,
I'll come again my honey,If I have to work my way.


Additional notes

Source for notated version: -

Printed sources : - Kerr (Merry Melodies, vol. 3), c. 1880's; No. 396, p. 43.

Recorded sources: - Field Recorders Collective FRC 711, Craig Johnson - "Deep Woods & Hollow" (2015).



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