12. Lord McDonald / Cumberland Gap (Instrumental)

Lord McDonald / Cumberland Gap - PD arrangement Tim O’Brien / Howdy Skies Music / Universal Music Corp / ASCAP. Frankie Gavin: fiddle; Tim O’Brien: mandolin; Earl Scruggs: banjo

-When I made a wish list of collaborators for this project, Earl Scruggs’s name came up. I had met Earl and his wife Louise a few times and felt bold enough to ask him. I called the Scrugg’s home phone, and Louise answered the phone. If you know Louise, you know she’s nearly all business. She asked what I wanted and I told her I hoped Earl might play on a track. She then asked, “What song?” I told her Soldiers Joy or Leather Britches (two tunes Earl had recorded with the Foggy Mountain Boys. She said, “Just a minute” and left me on hold, coming back a minute or so later. “Earl says he can’t play a solo on Leather Britches.” We scheduled a session and I was nervous to play not only with Scruggs but also with one of the very finest of Irish fiddlers, Frankie Gavin. Akira suggested we make it a medley of Lord McDonald (called Leather Britches in America) with Cumberland Gap, one of Earl’s classics.