Turkey in the Straw - Beginner Fiddle Song

Turkey in the Straw

Turkey in the Straw is a traditional American folk song written in the 19th century for the fiddle. But a couple of years later it became popular because of blackface performers. There are many versions of the lyrics for this tune. Here is one version:

Turkey in de straw, turkey in de hay
Turkey in de straw, turkey in de hay
Roll ’em up an’ twist ’em up a high tuc-ka-haw
An’ twist ’em up a tune called Turkey in the Straw

Here is a different traditional version of the lyrics. Why would it be that I like this version? :-)

Turkey in the hay, in the hay, in the hay.
Turkey in the straw, in the straw, in the straw,
Pick up your fiddle and rosin your bow,
And put on a tune called Turkey in the Straw.

Another interesting fact about this traditional fiddle tune is that according to survivors of the Titanic, this song was played by the band of the Titanic during the sinking.

My recording of Turkey in the Straw

This tune is fun to play. The rhythm is fun, especially in the second part when the rhythm is against the beat. It’s in the key of G Major and the notes are actually very easy, since it only has F sharp. But playing the fast 8th notes clean, without errors or scratches is quite a challenge. Anyway I tried my best, hope you like it.

Fiddle Collection for beginnersThis fiddle tune is the third one in the collection of Famous Fiddle Tunes and Songs. All previous fiddle songs I’ve played are also from that bundle. And there are many more to practice. ;-) This one was an arrangement by Loralyn Staples who also teaches exactly these fiddle songs and others.

Do you like to play fiddle songs too? Would love to hear which ones you have practiced already or you would like to learn!

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