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Blue Ridge Mountain Blues

The Blue Ridge Mountain Blues is a popular jam session song which should be in the repertoire of every bluegrass musician. The song has been popularised by Bill Clifton, with whom it is often associated. However, I believe Blue Ridge Mountain Blues may have been written by Carson Robison, and there is a pre-war recording by J. E. Mainer's Mountaineers.

Blue Ridge Mountain Blues has been recorded by a number of bluegrass artists over the years, including the Country Gentlemen and Jim & Jesse. You can find Bill Clifton's 1957 recording on the CD Bill Clifton: The Early Years 1957-1958 - a snippet of the track is also available at this link as an audio file. The words are at the Country Gentlemen site.

Here are a couple of mandolin breaks for Blue Ridge Mountain Blues in the key of G - though Bill Clifton's 1957 recording comes out in F sharp (!) on my turntable. The breaks are for the verse of the song, rather than the chorus. Blue Ridge Mountain Blues is usually taken at a fastish medium pace, metronome speed around half-note = 120-128 bpm. It is probably a good idea to listen to the MIDI playback in the MusEdit file to sort out the syncopation and tremolo sections in these breaks.


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