Voices of Illinois Country: Paul Tyler

 
Paul Tyler playing a fiddle

 

Illinois Public Media is pleased to introduce you to select up-and-coming country artists and bands as part of the exclusive content you won’t see in the hour-long “Illinois Country” documentary. These native Illinoisans have received critical acclaim and accolades for their music. They’ll tell us about their Illinois roots, their budding careers and how they’re taking Illinois with them as they pursue the bigtime.

Paul Tyler, Ph.D, is an ethnomusicologist, folklorist and acclaimed fiddler and mandolin player.  He teaches at Chicago’s Old Town School of Folk Music.  He plays fiddle, mandolin and guitar in the Fantastic Toe Trippers Orchestra and the Fly Boys, the band behind the WAZO County Warblers. Previously, he did a long stint with the Volo Bogtrotters, one of the foremost old-time string bands of the 1990s. He is currently a lecturer in anthropology at Chicago State University. His “The Rise of Rural Rhythm” is the lead essay in The Hayloft Gang: The Story of the National Barn Dance.

Tyler appears in Illinois Country as a scholar and narrator who discusses The National Barn Dance and its impact on the development of country music in both Illinois and nationally.

In this clip, Tyler sings a portion of the 1800’s folk song “Stay on the Farm”.

Lyrics to Stay on the Farm, Boys (Abridged version)

Sung by Paul Tyler
Professor, Old Town School of Folk Music

Come boys I have something to tell you
Come near and I’ll whisper it low
You’re thinking of leaving the homestead
Don’t be in a hurry to go
The city has many attractions but think of its vices and sins
When once in the vortex of fashion, how soon your destruction begins

Chorus

And it’s stay on the farm boys
Stay on the farm
Though profits come in rather slow
Stay on the farm, boys
Stay on the farm
Don’t be in a hurry to go

The farm is the best and the safest
And certainly suited to pay
You’re free as the air in the mountains
And monarch of all you survey

And it’s stay on the farm boys
Stay on the farm
Though profits come in rather slow
Stay on the farm, boys
Stay on the farm
Don’t be in a hurry to go