West of the Rockies Waltz (Otis Howard, early 1900s). This beautiful fiddle tune was written, most likely in the early 1900s, by Idaho old time fiddler Otis Howard, who came to Idaho prior to 1900. Written music does not exist. The recording here is of his protege Rue Frisbee playing the tune at the Weiser Old Time Fiddlers Contest in the early or mid 1960s, accompanied by his father Dave. Otis is seen at right in his late 70s or 80s. Steve Green of the Western Folklife Center in Elko, Nevada found the tape containing this fiddle tune and many others at the Idaho State Historical Society in Boise. He digitized these tunes and graciously let us use several Rue Frisbee recordings of Otis Howard compositions.

Idaho (H. C. Thompson, 1886). H. C. ("Hank") Thompson was a noted musician in southcentral Idaho in the late 1800s. This tribute to the territory of Idaho was published in the Idaho Semi Weekly World newspaper on April 13, 1886 and quickly became very popular in the region. Sheet music was published by the Idaho Pocahontas Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution Patriotic and Historic Society, with music transcription and arrangement provided by College of Idaho music professor Fleming Beale. Sheet music is in the collections at the Idaho State Historical Society and U. S. Library of Congress. The rendition here was recorded in Idaho City and is a simpler version of the sheet music - and likely truer to the version Thompson would have played. Beth Wilson provided lead vocals and guitar, Gary Eller was on mandolin and harmony vocals, and Rue Frisbee played fiddle.



© 2006-9. This page last updated on February 16, 2009.