Fiddling with the Wu Tang ice cream truck?

Well, kinda.

What RZA wrote is a tune to be used by ice cream trucks, as an antiracist alternative to “Turkey in the Straw.”

You can read all about the fowl (sorry) minstrel history of “Turkey in the Straw” here and here. Just don’t say I didn’t warn you about triggering language.

Since “Turkey in the Straw” was a fiddle tune first (and still is), I figured it was only fair that we fiddle-tune-ify RZA’s ice cream truck song as well.

Learn it, and let’s play it together?

Here’s what I played in the video:

Here’s an approximate transcription of the original version:

Finally, I also want to point you toward the The Black Music History Library. I’ve found it to be an invaluable starting place for filling in the gaps in my education and knowledge of Black music history.

(In fact, that site was the entrance to the rabbit hole that led me to finding out about this RZA/Good Humor collaboration in the first place!)

I still have a lot of work to do in this area, particularly as it relates to bluegrass and old-time fiddle. Do you? How many Black fiddlers can you name? If you don’t like the answer, there’s no time like the present to start catching up….

3 thoughts on “Fiddling with the Wu Tang ice cream truck?

  1. Do you want to talk about the fiddle itself?
    (I am still processing the new ice cream theme) non-ebony fingerboard, but maybe ebony pegs (or geared?) I might guess the rest of the fittings might be pernambuco looking wood (or composite?) lots of pernambuco never makes bow grade but is awesome tonally for fittings. Also- throat wise, gut wise, vascular wise…propolis is my new remedy about to test. Studies are promising. Blocked a friend of more than 50 years as he decided to join a militia and tout cops’ murdering as social therapy. My replies to the contrary were not received well. Sigh…

  2. Oddly, I never heard an ice cream truck play ‘Turkey in the Straw’. They played ‘The Band Played On’, ‘Daisy, Daisy’ (bicycle built for two) and ‘Greensleeves’, But hey, it’s nice to have a newly written tune.

  3. Hi Ms. Kat,
    You are well on your way to BE the next Tractor Tavern! I truly mean that in a sincere way. Thanks for the pdf’s. They are both WAY past my pay grade. They did, however inspire me to try to (soon) take my fiddle on my daily neighborhood walk and play “turkey” if only for the birds. Walking and fiddling will also be a challenge. Hints?
    Back in the day when I was first learning, I thought it would be neat to play “Auld Lang Syne” at midnight, walking around the neighborhood. The first years were too wet, then one cold clear night, I learned about temperature tuning in about a half hour! Peace be with you! EGAD

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