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Origins: Percy's Song (Bob Dylan)

DigiTrad:
A HARD RAIN'S A-GONNA FALL
DON'T THINK TWICE, IT'S ALL RIGHT
GOD ON OUR SIDE
PERCY'S SONG
TIMES THEY ARE A CHANGING
YOU AIN'T GOING NOWHERE


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Vixen 18 Oct 06 - 08:56 AM
ClaireBear 18 Oct 06 - 10:42 AM
GUEST,jaze 18 Oct 06 - 09:03 PM
mrdux 19 Oct 06 - 01:58 AM
Vixen 19 Oct 06 - 08:21 AM
Johnhenry'shammer 10 Dec 06 - 01:26 AM
number 6 10 Dec 06 - 01:30 AM
Peace 10 Dec 06 - 01:33 AM
David C. Carter 10 Dec 06 - 06:52 AM
David C. Carter 10 Dec 06 - 06:55 AM
Roughyed 10 Dec 06 - 05:45 PM
Arkie 10 Dec 06 - 07:18 PM
catspaw49 11 Dec 06 - 12:52 AM
Joe Offer 06 Nov 23 - 04:46 PM
Reinhard 06 Nov 23 - 05:02 PM
voyager 06 Nov 23 - 09:41 PM
GUEST,Jerome Clark 07 Nov 23 - 10:45 AM
GUEST,Jerome Clark 07 Nov 23 - 10:45 AM
Joe Offer 06 Nov 23 - 04:46 PM
voyager 06 Nov 23 - 09:41 PM
Reinhard 06 Nov 23 - 05:02 PM
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Subject: Backstory Req. B Dylan, Percy's Song
From: Vixen
Date: 18 Oct 06 - 08:56 AM

I've been reliving my youth and listening to old Fairport Convention tracks...one number that jumped out at me (and which I did not recall from my youth) was Percy's Song.

Is this a "true" ballad? What's the backstory?

Also, the melody structure of the song seems to meld Two Sisters/Cruel Wind and Rain (refrain) with the chantey Goodbye Fare thee Well (story line). Does anyone more familiar with the melody of "Goodbye Fare thee Well" concur with that? or am I hearing things that don't exist?

Thanks in advance...

V


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Subject: RE: Backstory Req. B Dylan, Percy's Song
From: ClaireBear
Date: 18 Oct 06 - 10:42 AM

I do see a resemblance, but I think the melody of "Percy's Song" has more in common with the chanty "Bold Riley" (which shares some lyrics with "Goodbye Fare Thee Well") than to that latter chanty. Check out the MIDI for Bold Riley -- on the DT page -- and see if you agree.


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Subject: RE: Backstory Req. B Dylan, Percy's Song
From: GUEST,jaze
Date: 18 Oct 06 - 09:03 PM

The first I ever heard Percy's Song was Joan Baez singing it in the film Don't Look Back. I loved the song and tried to find out what it was. I'd like to hear Fairport's version. I just think it's a great song. I'm not familiar with the other songs.


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Subject: RE: Backstory Req. B Dylan, Percy's Song
From: mrdux
Date: 19 Oct 06 - 01:58 AM

arlo guthrie did a fine version of it too, around 1970. "washington county" was the name of the album.

regarding the tune, dylan claimed he "took the tune from a song that a foksinger by the name of Paul Clayton sang called 'The Wind And The Rain.'" (http://www.theratio.org/features/1/dylan/default.htm)

michael


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Subject: RE: Backstory Req. B Dylan, Percy's Song
From: Vixen
Date: 19 Oct 06 - 08:21 AM

ClaireBear--I listened to the midi of Bold Riley, and I found Farewell Juliana (Golden Ring!) and listened to that, and at this point I'm more in favor of Farewell Juliana. Maybe because the midi doesn't have words, so I'm sort of imagining where the words would "line up" with the music. I can't find a recording of Goodbye Fare Thee Well at home, so I must have heard that one somewhere else.

Nobody's answered the second part of the query, though--was there really a Percy? (like Hurricane Carter?) Or is the whole narrative a fiction?

Curiouser and Curiouser...

V


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Subject: RE: Origins: Percy's Song (Bob Dylan)
From: Johnhenry'shammer
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 01:26 AM

I'm not sure whether Percy was real or not. What I am sure of is that this was an outtake from The Times They Are A-Changin'. Dylan's version was released on the Biograph box set.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Percy's Song (Bob Dylan)
From: number 6
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 01:30 AM

Good thread ... I always wondered too.

BTW ... I always have like that version by Fairport Convention ... Sandy Denny has a voice I haven't heard matched by any female singer since.

biLL


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Subject: RE: Origins: Percy's Song (Bob Dylan)
From: Peace
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 01:33 AM

"Percy's Song
Words Bob Dylan, melody trad. ("The Wind and The Rain", which is a variant of The Two Sisters)
Recorded Oct 24, 1963 during the sessions for The Times They Are A-Changin' and released on Biograph (1991)
Tabbed by Eyolf Østrem"

However, wasn't Biograph from the 1980s?


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Subject: RE: Origins: Percy's Song (Bob Dylan)
From: David C. Carter
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 06:52 AM

1986,or so it says on the box set I have.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Percy's Song (Bob Dylan)
From: David C. Carter
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 06:55 AM

Sorry.That should have been 1985!


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Subject: RE: Origins: Percy's Song (Bob Dylan)
From: Roughyed
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 05:45 PM

There is a previous thread on this at Percy's Song: History? which gives a little more information but not much. It does have an authentic feel to the story but I suppose that, as they say, if you can fake that you've got it made.

Hope the link works but I found it by putting the word 'Percy' into the knowledge search and scrolling down through the Percy French references etc.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Percy's Song (Bob Dylan)
From: Arkie
Date: 10 Dec 06 - 07:18 PM

I have not heard Paul Clayton's version of Wind and the Rain, but the Percy's Song tune does not resemble that closely the versions I do know.   I suspect that Dylan made the tune after hearing Clayton sing the Wind and the Rain and borrowed very loosely from the tune and borrowed the Rain and the Wind chorus. I suspect he made no attempt to capture the exact tune but was instead inspired by the tune.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Percy's Song (Bob Dylan)
From: catspaw49
Date: 11 Dec 06 - 12:52 AM

I think rougheyed may have been trying to link this previous thread from several years back. I have a longish, copied, post on that thread that is still just about everything I have still been able to find. I have occasionally gone searching over the past few years but found not much more than what I have on the other thread.

Sorry 'bout that.............Geez, I look at that date and it's just two days before I got the new heart valve. Wow........


Spaw


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Subject: ADD: Percy's Song (Bob Dylan)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 06 Nov 23 - 04:46 PM

PERCY'S SONG
(Bob Dylan)

Bad news, bad news came to me where I sleep
Turn, turn, turn again
Sayin' one of your friends is in trouble deep
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

Tell me the trouble, tell me once to my ear
Turn, turn, turn again
Joliet prison and ninety-nine years
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

Oh what's the charge of how this came to be?
Turn, turn, turn again
Manslaughter in the highest of degrees
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

I sat down and wrote the best words I could write
Turn, turn, turn again
Explaining to the judge I'd be there on Wednesday night
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

Without a reply I left by the moon
Turn, turn, turn again
And was in his chambers by the next afternoon
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

Could you tell me the facts, I said without fear
Turn, turn, turn again
That a friend of mine would get ninety-nine years
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

A crash on the highway flew the car to a field
Turn, turn, turn again
There was four persons killed and he was at the wheel
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

But I know him as good as I'm knowin' myself
Turn, turn, turn again
And he wouldn't harm a life that belonged to someone else
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

The judge he spoke out of the side of his mouth
Turn, turn, turn again
Sayin', "The witness who saw he left no doubt"
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

That may be true, he's got a sentence to serve
Turn, turn, turn again
But ninety-nine years, he just don't deserve
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

Too late, too late for his case it is sealed
Turn, turn, turn again
His sentenced is passed and it cannot be repealed
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

But he ain't no criminal and his crime it is none
Turn, turn, turn again
What happened to him could happen to anyone
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

And at that the judge jerked forward and his face it did freeze
Turn, turn, turn again
Sayin', "Could you kindly leave my office now, please"
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

The room was funny and I stood up so slow
Turn, turn, turn again
With no other choice except for to go
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

I walked down the hallway and I heard his door slam
Turn, turn, turn again
I walked down the courthouse stairs and I did not understand
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

And I played my guitar through the night to the day
Turn, turn, turn again
And the only tune my guitar could play
Was, "Oh the cruel rain and the wind"


Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Bob Dylan
Percy's Song (Studio Outtake - 1963) lyrics © Wb Music Corp


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Subject: RE: Origins: Percy's Song (Bob Dylan)
From: Reinhard
Date: 06 Nov 23 - 05:02 PM

Also in the DT as PERCYSNG


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Subject: RE: Origins: Percy's Song (Bob Dylan)
From: voyager
Date: 06 Nov 23 - 09:41 PM

Percy's Songs fits well in a world gone mad with Geo-olitical Armageddon conflict .... now is the time for your tears.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Percy's Song (Bob Dylan)
From: GUEST,Jerome Clark
Date: 07 Nov 23 - 10:45 AM

The Percy in "Percy's Song" was almost certainly Bishop Thomas Percy 1729-1811), the great ballad collector who influenced Prof. Francis James Child in the second half of the 19th century. I suspect it was Dylan's winking acknowledgement of his debt to "Two Sisters."


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Subject: RE: Origins: Percy's Song (Bob Dylan)
From: GUEST,Jerome Clark
Date: 07 Nov 23 - 10:45 AM

The Percy in "Percy's Song" was almost certainly Bishop Thomas Percy 1729-1811), the great ballad collector who influenced Prof. Francis James Child in the second half of the 19th century. I suspect it was Dylan's winking acknowledgement of his debt to "Two Sisters."


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Subject: ADD: Percy's Song (Bob Dylan)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 06 Nov 23 - 04:46 PM

PERCY'S SONG
(Bob Dylan)

Bad news, bad news came to me where I sleep
Turn, turn, turn again
Sayin' one of your friends is in trouble deep
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

Tell me the trouble, tell me once to my ear
Turn, turn, turn again
Joliet prison and ninety-nine years
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

Oh what's the charge of how this came to be?
Turn, turn, turn again
Manslaughter in the highest of degrees
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

I sat down and wrote the best words I could write
Turn, turn, turn again
Explaining to the judge I'd be there on Wednesday night
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

Without a reply I left by the moon
Turn, turn, turn again
And was in his chambers by the next afternoon
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

Could you tell me the facts, I said without fear
Turn, turn, turn again
That a friend of mine would get ninety-nine years
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

A crash on the highway flew the car to a field
Turn, turn, turn again
There was four persons killed and he was at the wheel
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

But I know him as good as I'm knowin' myself
Turn, turn, turn again
And he wouldn't harm a life that belonged to someone else
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

The judge he spoke out of the side of his mouth
Turn, turn, turn again
Sayin', "The witness who saw he left no doubt"
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

That may be true, he's got a sentence to serve
Turn, turn, turn again
But ninety-nine years, he just don't deserve
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

Too late, too late for his case it is sealed
Turn, turn, turn again
His sentenced is passed and it cannot be repealed
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

But he ain't no criminal and his crime it is none
Turn, turn, turn again
What happened to him could happen to anyone
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

And at that the judge jerked forward and his face it did freeze
Turn, turn, turn again
Sayin', "Could you kindly leave my office now, please"
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

The room was funny and I stood up so slow
Turn, turn, turn again
With no other choice except for to go
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

I walked down the hallway and I heard his door slam
Turn, turn, turn again
I walked down the courthouse stairs and I did not understand
Turn, turn to the rain and the wind

And I played my guitar through the night to the day
Turn, turn, turn again
And the only tune my guitar could play
Was, "Oh the cruel rain and the wind"


Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Bob Dylan
Percy's Song (Studio Outtake - 1963) lyrics © Wb Music Corp


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Subject: RE: Origins: Percy's Song (Bob Dylan)
From: voyager
Date: 06 Nov 23 - 09:41 PM

Percy's Songs fits well in a world gone mad with Geo-olitical Armageddon conflict .... now is the time for your tears.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Percy's Song (Bob Dylan)
From: Reinhard
Date: 06 Nov 23 - 05:02 PM

Also in the DT as PERCYSNG


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