Bonaparte's Retreat

As played by Melvin Wine from the West Virginia region

March in A mixolydian

From the Melvin Wine Collection

3 files for this tune:

Melody-Only Transcription (PDF)
Full Transcription (PDF)


Field recording at the Digital Library of Appalachia


Here's an odd duck. First of all, I don't know how to classify this. If this is a reel, then I'm the Queen of Sheba. This is as crooked as all get-out, and doesn't sound anything like the Bonaparte's Retreat that I learned. When I went to transcribe this tune, at first I thought it was arrhythmic. But it does follow a quirky rhythm all its own.

I have two different recordings of Wine playing this tune, one from the Digital Library of Appalachia and one from the Augusta Heritage Center's DVD and CD set "One More Time": The Life and Music of Melvin Wine. In the DLA version, he played the C in the first measure of the B part as a C natural. In the version on One More Time, he played it as a C sharp, except for the ending, where he played it as a C natural. Play it however you like it.

This tune is a member of the following groups:

Bonaparte's Retreat

Jim D 2013-01-28 01:25:23
Check out the beautiful version on James Bryan's, Crickets Lullaby album.