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Items from "Southern Appalachian": 136

Old Time Square Dancing on Ocracoke Island, North Carolina

Author Bob Dalsemer discovers a long tradition of the "big circle" square dance on this island off the North Carolina coast, far from the Appalachian Mountains where it is usually encountered.

Berea Country Dancers - Set Running (1917)

In this re-creation of dances from 1917, the Berea College Country Dancers, under the direction of Ethel Capps, show several figures described by Cecil Sharp in his Country Dance Book V. Sharp first saw dancing at Pine Mountain Settlement School, Kentucky, in 1917. The footage ends with a few words from Marguerite Butler Bidstrup who was present at…

Rural Square Dances in East Tennessee: A Personal Account of Visits to Four Communities

This article appeared (1981) in the scholarly journal published by Country Dance and Song Society. The author describes four East Tennessee square dance communities, including discussion of typical program; he also includes verbatim transcripts of some of the calls. See also a similar account (1974) by Bob Dalsemer of dances in Maryland Line,…

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Beaver Valley Breakdown - Lonesome Luke

More information about this band is available here.

Lonesome Luke & His Farm Hands – Wild Hog in the Woods

Recorded Thursday, February 12, 1931 Richmond IN (Champion 16229)Luke Decker - FiddleIra Decker - BanjoC.W. Johnson - GuitarLee Day - Guitar/CallsPhil Jamison: "Wild Hog in the Woods is one of four recordings made by Lonesome Luke & His Farm Hands in 1931 that includes dance calls. It has been widely available to old-time musicians since the…

Peek-a-Boo Square Dance called by Larry Edelman

Larry Edelman calls at the Dare To Be Square weekend held November 18-20, 2011, at the John C. Campbell Folk School, Brasstown, NC. In addition to the basic figure, which he demonstrates at the start, he calls a Pokey Eight (aka bouquet waltz) for a break, in which two groups of four whirl around each other on the floor to change positions. Toward…

Big Set square dance called by Phil Jamison

Phil Jamisonn calls at the Dare To Be Square weekend held November 18-20, 2011, at the John C. Campbell Folk School, Brasstown, NC. Figures included in this version include right hands across, Georgia Rang Tang, birdie in the cage, and make a basket (ladies bow, gents know how).

Musicians are Steve Hickman and Jim Morrison, fiddles; Claudio…

Calico Top square dance walkthrough

Larry Edelman leads the walkthrough for this dance at the Dare To Be Square weekend held November 18-20, 2011, at the John C. Campbell Folk School, Brasstown, NC. Elsewhere on this site you can see the actual dance.

Calico Top square dance called by Larry Edelman

Larry Edelman calls at the Dare To Be Square weekend held November 18-20, 2011, at the John C. Campbell Folk School, Brasstown, NC. An accompanying video on this website shows Larry's walkthrough of the figures in this dance.

Musicians are Steve Hickman, fiddle; Jim Morrison, guitar; Claudio Buchwald, piano; Sam Bartlett, banjo. The tune is…

Devils Dream (clip) - Ernest Legg & Kessinger Brothers

Ernest Legg (1904-1970) was from Charleston, WV (Kanawha County) Kessinger Brothers were fiddler Clark Kessinger (1896-1975) and his nephew, guitar player Luches Kessinger (1906-1944) "Devil’s Dream" (Brunswick 256) was recorded in February 1928 in Ashland, KY

Mountain Dance Trail - West Virginia

Created by folklorists Gerry Milnes and Becky Hill at Davis & Elkins College in Augusta, West Virginia, the Mountain Dance Trail is a statewide effort to support local square customs. The project received a lengthy article in the New York Times, which included a slideshow and video of dancing on its website, and a story (September 5, 2013) on…

"Dancing to the Music: Domestic Square Dances and Community in Southcentral Kentucky (1880-1940)"

This detailed examination of the role of square dances in south central Kentucky is written by a folklorist, who based his findings on interviews with 20 musicians, dancers, and callers in that region. (Another look at Kentucky dancing, by researcher LeeEllen Friedland in the late 1970s, can be found here.)In his introduction, Feintuch writes:…