Thursday, April 23, 2009

Pre-emptive Friday Jukebox Video

I had it on my mind earlier this week,to play a depression era folk tune by Pete Seeger entitled 'Freight Train'.
Perhaps you know of it.
It's bright,and simple,and pops up in my head from time to time.

Well,I lickity-split on over to YouTube,and had no problem ringing it up.
I was more than a little surprised to discover that Pete didn't write the song!
It was written by an unassuming woman by the name of Elizabeth Cotten.

COOL!..I love learning new stuff about old music,'s evolution and such, I was anxious to hear Liz and Pete perform the duet.
When 'WTF??' to my wondering eyes should appear?..but that Ms. Cotten plays guitar left-handed!..

So?..There's a shit-ton of left-handed guitarists you say.
Paul McCartney springs immediately to mind.
True enough,but they play left-handed guitars...Liz plays a right-handed guitar Upside Down!..
This puts the order of strings,top to bottom, reverse!
Hard enough to pick and chord,without having to imagine the whole thing ass backwards,and topsy-turvy.
..By my way o' thinkin',this is equivalent to playing the flute,by sucking on the opposite end.

'Freight Train'

Quite naturally,I obsessed over this singular phenomenon.
I flipped my fiddle over in my lap,..and had no friggin' clue how to proceed.

..This is what I finally came up with.

'dniW ehT nI tsuD'

That's all you get.



At 2:41 PM , Blogger billy pilgrim said...

now i know why i was such a lousy clarinet player.

they must have stuck me with a left handed one.

At 4:55 PM , Blogger sageweb said...

THat was really watch her and you play. You know there is a guitarist ALex Fox that does that all the time..not go wrong handed but puts it over his head and plays.

Anyleft, that was really cool

At 5:05 PM , Blogger Sling said...

Billy P.- Could'a been worse.
Imagine playing the trumpet,and having to clear the spit valve.

Sage- Ratz!..Just when I was gonna patent the technique. ;)

At 5:37 PM , Blogger jan said...

Love the Sling Friday choices as usual. Elizabeth has an engaging voice.

At 5:45 PM , Blogger Sling said...

Jan- All my silliness aside,snagging Elizabeth performing on film is a true 'Songcatcher' moment!
It made my day. :)

At 5:56 PM , Anonymous Maddy said...

That is quite fascinating. I particularly like the idea of sucking a wind instrument!

At 6:09 PM , Blogger Miss Healthypants said...

How talented you are!! :) You should be way proud--really!!

At 6:51 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

My younger son is a lefty and he plays a regular guitar. He just leanred to play it as if he were right-handed.

At 7:17 PM , Blogger Sling said...

Maddy- I'm pretty sure you've got the spirit of things.
Welcome to Sling's Domain! :)

Miss HP- Oh thank you.
That was my best interpretation of actual talent.

Citizen- You know that story about how it's aerodynamically impossible for a Bumblebee to fly,on account of it's wing size is not sufficient to provide enough lift to get the weight of it's body airborne..Only the Bumblebee doesn't know that,so it flies anyway?..
It's like that.
I can't get past the 'logic' of my training,and yet,there it is!
You're son,is my hero. :)

At 8:58 PM , Blogger yellowdog granny said...!.....

jimi hendrix also..lefty

At 9:49 PM , Blogger Mom said...

I love Elizabeth Cotton. You already know that i love you.

At 10:20 PM , Blogger Random Thinker said...

I turned my head away for a second and when I looked back there was Sling playing his guitar.... backwards?..... upside down?.....inside out?..... well, very impressive whatever which way it was.

At 10:41 PM , Blogger Willym said...

I grew up listening to Peter Seeger, the Weavers and Woody Guthrie. My brother played all their stuff on his banjo and we'd have singalongs. I had forgotten all about Freight Train - as you say simple but damned cathcy.

When I think back on it my brother played a regular banjo left handed and those were the days when they punished you in school for being left-handed.

Great archive video of Seeger and Ms Cotton and damn buddy you're good - backwards, upside down or inside out!

At 2:26 PM , Blogger rosemary said...

I'm with Mom....and you are awesome as well as loved.

At 5:17 PM , Blogger Sling said...

Yellerdawg- I didn't know that..Left handed guitar playing in general confuses me.

Mom- Isn't she a dear!..Thanks for the love. :)

Thinker- ..all part of the service here in Sling's Domain.

Willym- Left handed people should be punished!..wait..My daughter is left handed.
Never mind.

Rosie- Thanks doll. :)

At 10:29 AM , Blogger more cowbell said...

Holy lefthandluke!

At 3:06 PM , Blogger Sling said...

Cowbelle- Once again,you have crystallized my thoughts eloquently!

At 3:11 PM , Blogger Lorraine said...

You da man!

At 2:38 PM , Blogger Middle Child said...

Don and I were always Woody Guthrie and others like him fans. We went from the Stones and all of that to Woody Guthrie... I have never played a guitar but can appreciate how it would be to totally reverse every aspect of what you know about playing... Next time I see someone playing with a guitar over his head I'll know what he's doing.

At 9:13 PM , Blogger austexgrl said...

WOW!!! I LOVE this!!!!


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