Track Premiere – Buffalo Gals from Allison & Tatiana

Free Dirt Records has shared a second track from their upcoming project for Allison de Groot & Tatiana Hargreaves, due later this month. The self-titled album is a mix of fiddle/banjo duets and old time and traditional songs that have struck their fancy.

This time it’s the old favorite fiddle tune, Buffalo Gals, but with a slight twist from the way you may have heard it in before. Their version has a more modal or pentatonic feel than the common adaptation you hear at jams and conventions.

“We learned Buffalo Gals from a 1991 live recording of Matokie Slaughter (1919-1999) and Alice Gerrard at Berea College. In the recording, Alice tells the audience how Matokie uses the unusual banjo technique of fretting the 5th string to catch a melody note. Details like this, combined with her driving up and down picking style, make her one of our favorite players… and what a quirky take on this standard tune!

Thank you to Paul Brown for introducing Matokie’s music to Allison at the Swannanoa Gathering.”

These two young string artists have made quite a name for themselves separately in recent years, both as players and educators, and are now touring together on top of their other projects. Hargreaves has road and studio time in with Laurie Lewis, Gillian Welch, and Darol Anger while de Groot has worked with Bruce Molsky and The Goodbye Girls. Both ladies had also completed a formal music education in college before launching into full time performance careers.

Allison de Groot & Tatiana Hargreaves is scheduled for a March 22 release, with pre-orders enabled now online.

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John Lawless

John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.