This is Ed Baggott's Home Page

(of interest primarily to those who enjoy fiddle music and old-time country dance)

Last updated February 4, 2002

* This page can be reached as http://edbaggott.com at any time. However, because of the URL redirection it is sometimes a problem doing refreshes or reloads of linked pages. You just end up coming back here. I donít know how to fix that, but you can get around the problem by using the real URL to get here, which is http://home.hiwaay.net/~eabaggot/


Me and the fiddle - that thing on my head is a wireless headphone

You have somehow reached the home page of Edward Baggott, resident of Huntsville, Alabama. I have set out a little search bait, specifically the words/phrases fiddle, old-time, contra dancing, etc. So if you unexpectedly find yourself here, it's probably because you were looking for one of those things.

If you like, you can send me some email and introduce yourself. 

Or, you can leave a message in my guestbook (New!)

Here is a little picture gallery that you can browse through.

I have put a few samples of my playing in MP3 and RealAudio format for you to listen to, if you like.



Elsie and me playing at a dance

I have been playing fiddle for dances around the Southeast for over twenty years now. I play fairly regularly here in Huntsville, where I am accompanied by Elsie Peterson on piano. The dances in Huntsville area sponsored by the North Alabama Country Dance Society, and have been going strong for nearly twenty years. We have a bunch of really first-rate musicians and callers in this area, and if you are in town on the first or third Saturdays of the month, you ought to try to make it out.

Elsie and I have played at lots of dances in the region, including the Birmingham Country Dance Society, Nashville Country Dancers, the Old Farmer's Ball in Asheville, North Carolina, the Pittsfield Grange in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and many others. We've worked with many well-known callers, too, both regional and national. We would love to come and play at one of your dances sometime. Here are a couple of RealAudio sound clips of us playing for one of our local dances (note - you will need the RealAudio player to hear these files. Most web browsers already have this set up for you. Otherwise, you can download the player from here).

Our tunes come from all over, but I must confess a particular fondness for playing the Missouri-style breakdowns and those hornpipes out of the pages of M. M. Cole's 1000 Fiddle Tunes. That's because I started out playing in Houston, Texas and learned a good number of these tunes from Bill Northcutt, who was one of the most amazing fiddlers I've ever heard. Here is a newspaper clipping that ran shortly after his passing.

We also play a lot of nice Irish tunes, both jigs and reels. And, being from Alabama, we play a good number of southern dance tunes.

We get a lot of compliments from dancers and callers on our selection of tunes and how well they seem to fit each dance, and we are very proud of that. And please do not think of us as a "New England Contra" band - we are southerners, and hot squares are a specialty.


Performance Schedule

2001

2002


Here are a few links to other relevant pages around the area.  They contain links that can eventually get you nearly anywhere worth going if you are looking for old-time music and dance info:


Ed Haley Fiddle Tune Transcriptions

Ed Haley was a dazzling fiddler from West Virginia who was born in 1883 and died in 1951. He lost his sight as an infant, yet developed a fiddle style characterized by bewildering complexity and great breadth of repertoire. The late John Hartford spent a good portion of his life ferreting out information and recordings by him, and it is truly fascinating reading. For more information, please check out his Ed Haley page, and read the liner notes for the Haley CD's.

I have transcribed a number of Ed Haley's tunes. Click here to view them.

Kentucky Tunes

Here are some transcriptions of  Kentucky tunes that I enjoy playing. These come from some of the North American Traditions records previously mentioned.


Canadian Fiddle Music!

Most of the people down in my neck of the woods are completely unaware of the rich fiddle traditions of Canada.  This needs to be rectified, because the playing there is highly developed and diverse, and is steeped in the history and culture of that country. And, unlike down here, it still has a vital function in the community life of many of the regular folks.

Here are two of the best people that I can recommend as an introduction to the indigenous fiddle music of Canada:

John Arcand

John Arcand lives in Saskatchewan and is a composer of many tunes in the traditional style. Equally significant, though, is his energetic and compelling promotion of Metis fiddle music, which blends Scottish and French styles with the native American influence from northern Canada. The result is fiddle music with a unique sound and structure, often making use of cross tunings and unusual meters. It makes me think of the archaic sounds of old West Virginia fiddling, as played by the Hammons family and others of that area. It is wonderful stuff, so by all means check it out!

Calvin Vollrath

I was working in Edmonton, Alberta during the summer of 1999 and was introduced to the playing of Calvin Vollrath.  He is a phenomenal player, and puts out two or three CDs of mostly original tunes each year - tunes of all types - breakdowns, jigs, waltzes, two-steps,  you name it, all played with great energy and and total command.  If you are at all interested in fine fiddle playing, you need to check him out.  My personal favorite CDs are “Bonjour Comment Ca Va” and “Tamarack'r Down”.


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