The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #10100   Message #941682
Posted By: masato sakurai
28-Apr-03 - 02:33 AM
Thread Name: Origins: Old Rosin the Bow / Rosin the Beau
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Anybody know 'Old Rosin the Bow'?
Burke, thanks. On "Help Me to Sing" George Pullen Jackson wrote in Down-East Spirituals and Others (1943; Da Capo, 1975, No. 50 [pp. 69-70]:
 We are fortunate in finding numerous close and distant relatives of this text and tune [from Original Sacred Harp 376]. We must first interpret B.F. White's claim to it in the Sacred Harp as pertaining merely to his harmonic arrangement of what he must have considered an "unwritten" song. The text seems to be of American origin. The tune stems from the British Isles. In England its close relatives appear under such titles as 'Sally Gray' and 'Ratcliffe Highway'; in Scotland as the old tune 'The Mucking o' Geordie's Byre' which Robert Burns used for his 'Tam Glen'.
 Its somewhat less close melodic kindred are in England 'Th Banks of the Lea', in Wales 'Llanarmon', a hymn version, 'The Green Pool', and 'The Pretty Girl Milking her Cow'. In Ireland they are 'The Rose of the Vale', 'The Lass With the Bonny Brown Hair', and 'The Pretty Girl that Milks the Cows' which was found in the Bunting Collection of 1796.
 Some members of this tune family, appearing in four-four time, tend to merge with the 'Gilderoy' melodies which reach back at least to 1719. Those with texts in iambic meter sometimes touch the 'Babe of Bethlehem' tune family, as does 'Enquire'; and major-keyed versions of this predominantly aeolian and dorian formula approach the popular 'Old Rosin the Bow' group of tunes. So the tune above [i.e., "Help Me to Sing"] may be said to swim in the middle of our broad stream of national melody.
Other songs to the tune of "Rosin the Beau/Bow" include:
1. "The Trumpet of Freedom" ("The Home of the Free") - No. 152
2. "The Liberty Ball" - No. 166
3. "The True Spirit" - No. 287
(In Vicki L. Eaklor, American Antislavery Songs, Greenwood, 1988)

4. "Little Vanity"
5. "Old Tippecanoe"
6. "Two Dollars a Day and Roast Beef"
7. "Lincoln and Liberty"
8. "Then It's Irishmen, What Are You Doing?"
9. "Straight-Out Democrat"
10. "Tippecanoe and Morton Too"
11. "Grandfather's Hat"
12. "The Hayseed"
(In Irwin Silber, Songs America Voted By, Stackpole Books, 1971)

13. "He's the Man for Me"
(In Richard A. Dwyer and Richard E. Lingenfelter, The Songs of the Gold Rush, University of California Press, 1965)

14. "The Agrarian Ball"
(In Philip S. Foner, American Labor Songs of the Nineteenth Century, University of Illinois Press, 1975)

15. "The Mill-Boy of the Slashes"
16. "Old Hal o' the West"
17. (= 7.) "Lincoln and Liberty"
(In Sinmund Spaeth, Read 'Em and Weep, Doubleday, 1927)

18. "Sherman's March to the Sea"
(In John Anthony Scott, The Ballad of America, Bantam, 1966)

19. Freemen, rally! (New York, New York: H. De Marsan, n.d.)
20. I cannot support him! Can you? (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: James D. Gay, 1864)
21. Brownell, the gallant Zouave (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: J. H. Johnson. n.d.)
(At America Singing: Nineteenth-Century Song Sheets)