Salt River

As played by Ed Haley from the West Virginia region

Reel or Breakdown in A mixolydian

From the Southern Appalachians Collection

3 files for this tune:

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


Private recording of Ed Haley released on the album Ed Haley, Volume 1: Forked Deer


This is West Virginia fiddler Ed Haley’s interesting version of Salt River. Although perhaps not as pleasing to my ear as Clark Kessinger’s setting , it is still quite nice. Despite all the low As, I don’t think Haley was cross-tuned. This is also as evidenced by the presence of D drones in a few places.

I would suggest avoiding the first time through the tune when learning the tune, as it is inconsistent with the other times through, especially in the B part. Once you have a firm grasp on the tune, come back to the first time through for some interesting (or scary) variations.

The transcription starts with a quarter rest because the recording starts on the second beat of the first measure. It is possible that Haley may have started there, or the first beat may have been cut off in the recording.

This tune is a member of the following groups:

Salt River (Salt Creek)

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