The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #3551   Message #18026
Posted By: Alice
21-Dec-97 - 03:06 PM
Thread Name: Songbook recommendations
Subject: RE: Songbooks
Just another note. I really like to find old community, church, and school songbooks. The only one that I've seen that I don't care for is the Rise Up Singing book. There is something about it that really annoys me. I don't know quite how to put it into words. Well, on second thought, I do. It is the presumption that it is an accurate source (when it is not) and the cult-like way SOME of its followers cling to it like a holy scripture, and create an authoritarian ritualistic culture around it. (You have to sing it by the RUS book, attitude.) That kind of cult behavior can occur in any context. It would bug me if people were doing "strictly by the book" song circles with any source. I have written my own verses to songs so that I can sing them from a woman's point of view (like the "heave away" song, South Australia). Part of folk singing is the ability for us "just plain folks" to change songs to make them our own experience. Although I believe in searching to find older sources, I still make a song my own, if I need to change some words or notes to make it more singable for me. No offence intended, so don't start spamming this thread, all you RUS lovers! It may be the way many people these days are introduced to group folk singing, which, if they don't get stuck there, is a positive first step. A fun song circle would be one in which singers created their own parodies of RUS songs. We already had a big discussion about RUS in a thread awhile back, and I don't want to start that debate again!! ;-) Alice in MT