Red-Haired Boy. St. Anne’s Reel. I’m sure there’s more but all my computer gives me when I ask it for "trad. tunes identified as ubiquitous" is the definition of ubiquitous and polypeptide chains. (!?)
I was in a bluegrass jam (heretic! cast her into the outer darkness!) and they told me to pick a tune and I’m like, dunno any. They knew I played ITM and so they played Red Haired Boy, and they got mad at me because I used ornaments. Well, not mad, but they got confused because their chords didn’t work with my version. I got a crash course in Blackberry Blossom (I was so confused, the b part is literally just chords), then they played St. Anne’s Reel. Again, I ornamented, they didn’t.
We finished St Annes and one guy said, Nice Irish tune, that. And I said to myself, Isn’t it French Canadian? But I learned it originally in old time…and they all knew it in bluegrass…
So, what do you do with ubiquitous tunes? And are there others? And if you go into a session and everyone’s playing a different version of Red-Haired Boy than you, with different chords, how do you cope?