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Rednex - Cotton Eye Joe (Extended Original Version)

But without a doubt, the most luxurious, original, and fun version that we have heard is that of Ricky Skaggs with the Irish group The Chieftains (who are something like both the Beatles and the Rolling Stones of Irish Celtic music).

Rednex - Cotton Eye Joe (Extended Original Version)

Marion Thede believes 'cotten-eyed' may refer to a person with very light blue eyes, while Alan Lomax suggests it was used to describe a man whose eyes were milky white from Trachoma. In Georgia, people with large whites to the eyes are called cotton-eyed. This usage is fairly common, as pointed out in the quote from a dictionary of slang (Gargoyle). Charles Wolfe (1991) writes that African-American collector Thomas Talley, in his manuscript of stories, Negro Traditions, related a story entitled "Cotton-Eyed Joe, or the Origin of the Weeping Willow." The story includes a stanza from the song, "but more importantly details a bizarre tale of a well-known pre-Civil War plantation musician, Cotton Eyed Joe, who plays a fiddle made from the coffin of his dead son." Boswell's Folk Songs of Middle Tennessee, which references Talley, The Negro Traditions has this to say: "According to black folk traditions of late-nineteenth-century Bedford County, Cotton-Eyed Joe was a well-known pre-Civil War slave musician whose tragic life caused his hair to turn white; eventually he played a fiddle made from the coffin of his dead son." Boswell collected seven versions. The tune was a favorite of John Dykes (Magic City Trio Eastern Tenn.) and it was in the repertoire of Arizona fiddler Kenner C. Kartchner (in the key of G Major) who said a fellow fiddler named Youngblood brought it to the territory from Mississippi around 1890. It was one of the tunes played at the turn of the century by Etowah County, Alabama, fiddler George Cole, according to Mattie Cole Stanfield in her book Sourwood Tonic and Sassafras Tea (1963), and was mentioned in accounts of the DelKalb County Annual (Fiddlers) Convention, 1926-31. The title appears in a list of traditional Ozark Mountain fiddle tunes compiled by musicologist/folklorist Vance Randolph, published in 1954. Some verisons are similar to Lowe Stokes (N.Ga.) popular "Citaco." Ken Perlman (1996), who collected the tune on Prince Edward Island, believes Canadian versions probably derived from the playing of radio and TV Maritime fiddler Don Messer (the 'B' part is played with a strong Acadian flavor). See also Bayard's (1981) note to a related tune "The Horse Called Rover" (No. 10, pgs. 20-21). The original tune for "Cotton-Eyed Joe" may have been originally a Scottish piece called "General Burgoyne's March." (Kuntz, Fiddler's Companion, ). Mountain Ramblers Biography by Eugene Chadbourne 041b061a72


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