Notes on the Tunes

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12. Down to the Wildwood to Shoot the Buffalo

This is Marcus Martin’s “Citaco,” recorded in 1942 by Artus Moser, who asked with annoyingly perfect diction before each selection, “And what is the name of this tune, Mister Martin?” Citaco is a town in Southeast Tennessee. (Blech) Martin tunes low to get this wonderfully mellow syncopation and stops the fiddle to sing, “Way down in the old Citaco, the girls they plow and the boys they hoe. That’s the way they do in the old Citaco, (repeat). Lowe Stokes, who lived in that area and recorded it told Joe LaRose and Kerry Belch that the original title was “Down to the Wildwood to Shoot the Buffalo.” In the spirit of this early title, I penned an appropriate verse. Daniel Boone describes “buffaloes browsing on the leaves of cane,” in Kentucky in 1769. The buffalo were gone from western Virginia by 1825. (Belue, 164)

Chris’ Smith DAEA