I’ve had this tune floating around my head for a number of years now, one of those tunes that you can hum but never get round to learning. Well, I though it was time to put that right.
A Barlow knife is a type of penknife that originated in England but became very popular in America. You can read more about the tune title on this traditional music site.
There is also a short lyric to go with it.
I been livin’ here all my life,
All I got is a Barlow Knife;
Buck horn handle and a barlow blade,
Best dang knife that ever was made.
There are a number of versions of this tune on YouTube, none of which have the ties across the bars like The Fuzzy Mountain String Band version. This one gives you a good idea though.