Audio Recordings Forked Deer
Articles and Essays with this item:
- Forked Deer
- Contributor Names
- Jabbour, Alan (Transcriber)
- Jabbour, Alan (Collector)
- Reed, Henry, 1884-1968 (Performer)
- Created / Published
- Reed family home, Glen Lyn, Giles County, Virginia, August 27, 1966
- Subject Headings
- - Instrumental music
- - Fiddle tunes
- - Folk music--Appalachian Region
- - Breakdowns
- - Reels
- - Ethnography
- - Music
- - Field recordings
- - United States -- Virginia -- Giles County -- Glen Lyn
- Field recordings
- - Key: D
- - Meter: 4/4
- - Compass: 17
- - Strains: 3 (high-low-high octave, 4-4)
- - Rendition: 1r-2r-1r-3-1-2
- - Phrase Structure: ABA'C QRQ'S Q"R"Q"S" (abac ab'de qrqs qtue--Q"R"Q"S": octave higher)
- - Stylistic features: Low strain repeated in upper octave, requiring third position on E-string.
- - Performed by Henry Reed, fiddle.
- - Recording chronology: 061
- - Duration: 1 minute, 27 seconds
- - "Forked Deer" is a quintessential fiddle tune of the old frontier. It is old and widely distributed, yet it cannot be traced to the Old World or the northern United States. "Forked Deer" begins with and gives greatest emphasis to the high strain of the tune. And it is fiddled with a fluid bowing style using slurs to create complicated rhythmic patterns, in the manner of the old Upper South. Its title both evokes the forest and (though few fiddlers in the Appalachians realize this) names a river in West Tennessee. An 1839 printed set from Southside Virginia (Knauff, Virginia Reels, vol. 1, #4 "Forked Deer") establishes the tune's longevity under that title in Virginia.It found its way onto the nineteenth-century stage and into tune collections as a "jig": see Brother Jonathan's Collection of Violin Tunes (1862), p. 26 "Gas Light Jig"; Coes, George H. Coes' Album of Music, p. 6 "Forkedair Jig," pp. 34-35 "Come and Kiss Me." But that did not give it circulation beyond its home region in the Upper South, where it turned up in many twentieth-century sets; see Thomas, Devil's Ditties, pp. 131-133 (compare Victor 21407B, played by Jilson Setters (James Day)); Ford, Traditional Music of America, p. 45 "Old Pork Bosom"; Morris, Old Time Violin Melodies, #31 "Forkadair"; Thede, The Fiddle Book, p. 135 (Oklahoma).Henry Reed plays a third strain, as do some other fiddlers, composed of the low strain recast an octave higher. He once mentioned that another old title for "Forked Deer" was "Hounds in the Thorn Bush," but he considered "Forked Deer" its proper name. He also mentioned it as one of the tunes in Quince Dillion's repertory.
- Audio tape
- Call Number
- AFC 1967/007: AFS 13035B05
- Source Collection
- Alan Jabbour duplication project, part 1
- American Folklife Center
- Digital Id
Rights & Access
The Library of Congress is not aware of any U.S. copyright protection (see Title 17, U.S.C.) or any other restrictions in the material in this collection, except as noted below. Users should keep in mind that the Library of Congress is providing access to these materials strictly for educational and research purposes. The written permission of the copyright owners and/or other holders of rights (such as publicity and/or privacy rights) is required for distribution, reproduction, or other use of protected items beyond that allowed by fair use or other statutory exemptions. Responsibility for making an independent legal assessment of an item and securing any necessary permissions ultimately rests with persons desiring to use the item. See our Legal Notices and Privacy and Publicity Rights for additional information and restrictions.
The Center asks that researchers approach the materials in this collection with respect for the culture and sensibilities of the people whose lives, ideas, and creativity are documented here. Researchers are also reminded that privacy and publicity rights may pertain to certain uses of this material.
Photographs in this collection produced by Carl Fleischhauer, Karen Singer Jabbour, and Kit Olson are reproduced here with their permission. Mr. Fleischhauer does not object to additional use of the photos he created provided he is credited as the photographer. Persons contemplating other kinds of uses or use of the other photographers' work should contact the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress.
Please cite the source collection title, collection number, and repository, for example:
Alan Jabbour duplication project, part 1 (AFC 1967/007), American Folklife Center, Library of Congress
Alan Jabbour duplication project, part 2 (AFC 1969/008), American Folklife Center, Library of Congress
Fiddle tunes of the old frontier: the Henry Reed collection online presentation (AFC 1999/016), American Folklife Center, Library of Congress
Rights assessment is your responsibility.
More about Copyright and other Restrictions
For guidance about compiling full citations consult Citing Primary Sources.