Petit Jean Gallop

As played by the Wonder State Harmonists from the Arkansas region

Rag in G and C

From the Ozarks and Missouri Valley Collection

5 files for this tune:

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


78rpm Record


This transcription is sponsored by Dr. Fiddle contributor Patrick Towell.

“And now for something completely different.” – John Cleese

This is the first (but hopefully not the last) tenor banjo tune on this site. While I do play tenor banjo, I play Irish tenor tuned to GDAE. The banjo in this recording was tuned to CGDA, like a viola or mandola. This presented a quandary in the transcription. After consulting with some CGDA-tuned tenor banjo experts, I was informed that the long-established standard for tenor banjo music is to present it in the treble clef with 8vb. Therefore, in the transcription, Middle C represents the fourth string open. This is probably old hat for tenor banjo players, but takes some getting used to for the rest of us.

I am also including transcriptions transposed up a fifth for play on GDAE-tuned instruments such as the mandolin or GDAE-tuned tenor banjo.

Neither I nor the sponsor of this tune, who has extensively researched traditional Arkansas music, know the identity of the tenor banjoist in this recording. Mr. Towell has theorized that the Wonder State Harmonists might be another name for Dr. Smith’s Champion Hoss Hair Pullers, and if so, that might be an avenue of research for identifying this anonymous banjoist.

Whoever the banjoist was, he played this rag in five parts with an intro. The tune is structured as follows: Intro AA BB CC Intro A B D E. (Having an intro in the middle of the tune is not unprecedented; the well-known Joplin rag The Entertainer features such an intro.) The C part is twice the length of the other parts. The A, B, D, and E parts are in the key of G, while the C part is in the key of C. (The keys in the transposed transcriptions are thus D and G, respectively.)



This tune is a member of the following groups:


Tenor Banjo Transcriptions

This tune has no comments.