After another couple weeks off, I've finally gotten back to recording my "album" (here). This week's tune is one of the first fiddle tunes I ever wrote and its called "Sisyphus' Hill." Interestingly I've slipped this one into an Elderly video alongside some standards (as mentioned before, here) - that clip is below:
Me playing "Sisyphus' Hill" on an Ome Northstar; filmed for my side-gig as a banjo tester for Elderly instruments (still love every Ome I've ever played!). Link for full video: youtu.be/052xPB-Dm5Q
The way I played the tune above is the way I used to play it with my band back in VA...but I decided to give it a few tweaks before recording this time. The biggest change is that I ended both the A and B parts on a C# (both parts originally ended on an A). The song is mostly in A minor, but this change forces both parts to end on an A major chord. Here's the Audio file of my "album" recording:
"Sisyphus' Hill" - an original fiddle tune by Jeff Norman (me). Played twice through by me on my Buckeye tuned to aEADE; guitar accompaniment the 2nd time through using a 12-fret Epiphone Masterbilt in standard tuning without a capo. Tune and recording Copyright 2017 - Jeff Norman.
I think I like the changes but I'm wondering if the major chord is too gimmicky...opinions welcome in the comments!
A bit on the name: my buddy Chris named this tune in reference to the Greek myth of Sisyphus, who had to push a rock up a hill only to have it roll down again every day for eternity. Chris thought this was a good metaphor for fiddle tunes which (when played right!) seem to go on forever : ) We even named our band the "Sisyphus Hill Stringband" for a while but the reference was lost on a lot of people ("Is that hill around here somewhere?"). Best not to have a band name you have to explain so much - eventually we changed to "Happy Hollow Stringband" instead.
As for banjo stuff: Buckeye banjo, no recent alterations (it could use some new strings!), tuned to A modal (aEADE). Amazingly, I've only got 1 more tune to finish up the album...maybe I can actually push through to the end next week!
About this blog
I have lots of ideas about banjo playing and music in general - this blog allows me to get them all out of my head and see what you think.