So I want to feature a local version in D of the tune “Twin Sisters”. This rendition was a part of the Old Originals LP that has so many great tune versions played by mostly unknown players who were found in their elderly years still able to remember tunes from their community. Thanks to the work of Blanton Owen and Tom Carter who collected these tunes in the early 1970s.
This is not to be confused with the modal tune from Carroll County of the same name. I’ll feature that in a future Tune of the Week. Sherman Wimmer is the solo fiddler. I kinda like his unique rhythmic groove emphasizing the backbeat in his bowing. He was from near Callaway in western Franklin County, Virginia.
Here’s a banjo version from Emory Stroup of Rockingham County, Virginia. He apparently attended the 1938 Festival on Whitetop Mountain in Grayson County and played this interesting solo for the banjo contest. It is the same tune although barely.
Lastly, here’s a band version played by fiddler Ernie Carpenter of West Virginia where the tune may have originated. I love the strategic use of the G or 4 chord in the back-up chord pattern with a mellow pace to make Ernie’s rustic performance into a truly beautiful rendition.
Comment from Andy Buckman
Melvin Wine played this version of “Twin Sisters” too; his sounds similar to Ernie Carpenter’s.
Comment from Paul Brown
Peter Honig and David Howard played this as Jennie Baker on their unreleased recording “We’s Too Little” which they later made available to the world as a gift.
Comment from Teri Klassen
Here’s the Jimmy Johnson String Band link for “Jennie Baker”, at Gennett I guess, 1932, sounds a lot like Melvin’s “Twin Sisters”.