Saddle Old Kate

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X:1 % T:Saddle Old Kate S:Dallas Robirds, via Alton Jones, via Lonnie Robertson (1908-1981, Mo.) M:C| L:1/8 R:Reel D: Rounder 0375, Lonnie Robertson - "Lonnie's Breakdown" (1996) Z:Transcribed by Andrew Kuntz K:A A-|A{fg}f e>c {Bc}BAFA-|AF A>c Bc3|{B}[ce]e/f/ e>c BA F>D|EF A>c BA3:| |:[[Be]-|[c/e/][B/e/][ce] [ce]>A BAF>D|EF A>c Bc2[Be]-|[c/e/]B/c/d/ c>A BA F>D|EF A>c BA3:|]



SADDLE OLD KATE. Old-Time, Breakdown. USA; Missouri, Arkansas. A Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AA’BB’. The title appears in a list of traditional Ozarks Mountains fiddle tunes compiled by musicologist/folklorist Vance Randolph, published in 1954, and, indeed, the melody seems to have had wide currency in the region. Arkansas fiddler Jesse Wallace learned the version he plays from a fiddler named Frank Watkins in the mid-1930’s. Ozarks fiddler Fred Stoneking told the story (heard from Bill Mustain) of two brothers who resolved their c. 1920’s dispute about how the tune should be played by calling one version “Saddle Old Kate,” and the other “Saddle Old Spike” (see note for the closely related “Saddle Old Spike”) [liner notes Stoneking’s album “Saddle Old Spike,” Rounder 0381). Drew Beisswenger (2008) sees similarities to some versions of “Got a Little Home to Go to," while Mark Wilson sees resemblances in the Skillet Lickers’ 1930's tune “Don’t You Cry My Honey.”

Additional notes

Lonnie Robertson

Source for notated version: - Lonnie Robertson (1908-1981, Springfield, Mo.), learned from Alton Jones, who learned it from Ozarks fiddler Dallas Robirds [Beisswenger & McCann].

Printed sources : - Beisswenger & McCann (Ozarks Fiddle Music), 2008; p. 126.

Recorded sources: - Rounder CD 0375, Lonnie Robertson – “Lonnie’s Breakdown” (1996. Originally recorded 1976).

See also listings at:
Jane Keefer’s Folk Music Index: An Index to Recorded Sources [1]
Hear a slower learning version by Paul Tyler & Steve Rosen at the Old Towne School of Folk Music's Fiddle Tune Archive [2]
Hear Lonnie Robertson's recording at Slippery Hill [3]
See a standard notation transcription from the IL-MO Boys [4]



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