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Audio Recordings Old Dan Tucker

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About this Item

Old Dan Tucker
Contributor Names
Jabbour, Alan (Transcriber)
Jabbour, Alan (Collector)
Jabbour, Karen Singer (Collector)
Reed, Henry, 1884-1968 (Performer)
Emmett, Daniel Decatur, 1815-1904 (Composer)
Created / Published
Reed family home, Glen Lyn, Giles County, Virginia, July 17, 1967
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
-  Rendition: 1r-2r-1r-2
-  Compass: 7
-  Performed by Henry Reed, fiddle.
-  Duration: 1 minute, 9 seconds
-  Strains: 2 (low-high, 2-2)
-  Phrase Structure: AB QB' (abcd qrsd)
-  Spoken: [before tune]/[Dog barks]/ALAN JABBOUR: [Laughs]/HENRY REED: Well, I don't know of anything but what I've played for you./ALAN JABBOUR: Well, you mentioned "Old Dan Tucker" while ago./HENRY REED: [Laughs]. Well, you know that./ALAN JABBOUR: I, I'd like to
-  Recording chronology: 156
-  Composed by Daniel Emmett, 1843
-  "Old Dan Tucker" appears on the American popular music scene in 1843, when it was published by Dan Emmett, an important performer on the minstrel stage. It is possible that all modern versions stem from the minstrel stage, but the tune has an African-American feel about it, particularly in its use of simple melodic material that is modified, expanded, and turned into a musically evolving tune. A nineteenth-century print version is included in Howe's School for the Violin (1851), p. 43. Twentieth-century sets include Fillmore, American Veteran Fifer #112; Ford, Traditional Music of America p. 55; Brown, The Frank C. Brown Collection of North Carolina Folklore vol. 5, 59-60 (#81); Ames, "The Missouri Play-Party," p. 309; Thede, The Fiddle Book, p. 74; and Ruth, Pioneer Western Folk Tunes, p. 15 ("Used for March for Dan Tucker Waltz"). It is widely played by Southern fiddlers--perhaps out of the mountains more than in them--and is associated with square dancing throughout the country.Alan Jabbour's conversation with Henry Reed before he played this tune reveals that he had caught the spirit of these recording sessions as an effort to collect all the tunes he knew.
Audio tape
Call Number/Physical Location
AFC 1969/008: AFS 13705B04
Source Collection
Alan Jabbour duplication project, part 2
American Folklife Center
Digital Id
Online Format

Rights & Access

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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 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.

Credit line

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

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Citations are generated automatically from bibliographic data as a convenience, and may not be complete or accurate.

Chicago citation style:

Jabbour, Alan, Alan Jabbour, Karen Singer Jabbour, Henry Reed, and Daniel Decatur Emmett. Old Dan Tucker. Reed family home, Glen Lyn, Giles County, Virginia, 1967. Audio. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, (Accessed August 27, 2016.)

APA citation style:

Jabbour, A., Jabbour, A., Jabbour, K. S., Reed, H. & Emmett, D. D. (1967) Old Dan Tucker. Reed family home, Glen Lyn, Giles County, Virginia. [Audio] Retrieved from the Library of Congress,

MLA citation style:

Jabbour, Alan, et al. Old Dan Tucker. Reed family home, Glen Lyn, Giles County, Virginia, 1967. Audio. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <>.