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'Singing 'Shenandoah' for Brits

DigiTrad:
OH, MY ROLLING RIVER
SHENANDOAH


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Lighter 21 Oct 16 - 10:42 AM
Taconicus 21 Oct 16 - 10:22 AM
Taconicus 21 Oct 16 - 10:16 AM
Keith A of Hertford 21 Oct 16 - 10:06 AM
Taconicus 21 Oct 16 - 09:45 AM
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Subject: RE: 'Singing 'Shenandoah' for Brits
From: Lighter
Date: 21 Oct 16 - 10:42 AM

The collector Richard Runciman Terry wrote that "English seamen usually pronounced it 'Shannandore.'" (I.e., "Shannandaw.")

"Shannadaw" must also have been sung, since one printed version is called "Oceanida."   

Either way the "r" might or might not have appeared before a vowel like "I."

The usual U.S. pronunciation of the valley, river, county, and town is "Shen-an-do-ah."

But that's a poorer fit for the meter in any case.


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Subject: RE: 'Singing 'Shenandoah' for Brits
From: Taconicus
Date: 21 Oct 16 - 10:22 AM

Here's an example of a decent pronunciation. (The lyrics are modern, but one can't have everything.) :-)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0NmKp5A8i3M

Just trying to help.


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Subject: RE: 'Singing 'Shenandoah' for Brits
From: Taconicus
Date: 21 Oct 16 - 10:16 AM

"Door" at the end is nearly as bad. You may think you're singing at the way you heard it, but trust me, you're not. The difference is very obvious to American ears. Just end with DOH (dough) and you'll do fine.


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Subject: RE: 'Singing 'Shenandoah' for Brits
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 21 Oct 16 - 10:06 AM

This Brit says Shan An Dor as US flms and TV series always did.


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Subject: 'Singing 'Shenandoah' for Brits
From: Taconicus
Date: 21 Oct 16 - 09:45 AM

To all those British (English/Scottish/Irish) folk singers out there who like to perform the American folk song "Shenandoah": Please don't pronounce it as four syllables with an "UH" at the end. That sounds horrid. (I'm not sure if this is analogous in awfulness, but would you pronounce Edinburgh ed-in-bu-ROW?)

Try to pronounce "Shenandoah" as a three syllable word, with "oah" a single syllable diphthong. Aside from that, I can't really describe how it should sound. In fact, the best bet if you're not born to it is to just sing shen-en-DOH — that's how American choruses sing it anyway. The final syllable DOH will blend into the next word ("I") and it will sound fine.


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