Old-Time Tune List

This is a selected list of American old-time tunes we might play together at TrailJams old-time jams. If you would like a much longer list of tunes to jog your memory of tunes you know or to inspire you with tunes to learn, Wendy’s Old-Time Tunes List is a good place to look.

The tunes in the list are divided up as “A Tunes,” “D Tunes,” and so forth mostly to accommodate banjo tuning: once banjos are as close as they can get to being tuned, it is best to leave them in that tuning a while. It is not uncommon to stay in the same tuning for several hours in a session. If you are uncertain about Dorian and Mixolydian modes, the article “Dorian, Mixolydian, Oh My: Modes in a Nutshell” has a brief and painless explanation.

A Tunes

  • Bill Cheatham
  • Cluck Old Hen (A Dorian)
  • Old Joe Clark
  • Red Haired Boy (A Mixolydian)

C Tunes

  • Billy in the Lowground

D Tunes

  • Angeline the Baker
  • Boil Them Cabbage Down
  • Bonaparte Crossing the Rhine
  • Coleman’s March
  • Liberty
  • Midnight on the Water (Waltz)
  • Mississippi Sawyer
  • Over the Waterfall
  • Saint Anne’s Reel
  • Soldier’s Joy
  • Whiskey Before Breakfast

G Tunes

  • Big Scioty
  • Blue River Waltz
  • Cold Frosty Morning
  • Southern Aristocracy
  • Girl I Left Behind Me, The (G)
  • Redwing
  • Sandy River Bell
  • Shove that Pig’s Foot a Little Closer to the Fire