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Chord Req: Constant lovers

DigiTrad:
CONSTANT LOVERS
I NEVER WILL MARRY


Related threads:
Origins: I Never Will Marry (35)
Lyr Req: Unaccompanied song - Constant Lovers (11)
Origins: Constant Lovers (13)


Myrtle's cook 06 Mar 09 - 06:31 AM
Malcolm Douglas 06 Mar 09 - 07:35 AM
Malcolm Douglas 06 Mar 09 - 07:40 AM
Myrtle's cook 06 Mar 09 - 08:21 AM
GUEST,leeneia 06 Mar 09 - 09:19 AM
Bernard Quenby 06 Mar 09 - 10:26 AM
GUEST 30 May 12 - 06:33 AM
JHW 30 May 12 - 06:45 AM
GUEST,Grishka 31 May 12 - 08:19 AM
breezy 31 May 12 - 07:08 PM
Leadfingers 31 May 12 - 07:27 PM
GUEST,leeneia 01 Jun 12 - 07:58 AM
GUEST,Grishka 01 Jun 12 - 03:31 PM
GUEST,Grishka 01 Jun 12 - 03:38 PM
Leadfingers 02 Jun 12 - 10:20 AM
GUEST,Grishka 02 Jun 12 - 01:24 PM
GUEST,leeneia 02 Jun 12 - 08:37 PM
GUEST,leeneia 02 Jun 12 - 08:50 PM
GUEST,Grishka 05 Jun 12 - 05:22 PM
Bugsy 05 Jun 12 - 09:30 PM
Myrtle's cook 06 Jun 12 - 08:44 AM
GUEST,Grishka 06 Jun 12 - 04:13 PM
breezy 07 Jun 12 - 03:32 PM
Leadfingers 07 Jun 12 - 06:56 PM
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Subject: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: Myrtle's cook
Date: 06 Mar 09 - 06:31 AM

Does anyone have any chords for Constant Lovers (which is on the lyrics database)? I have heard a couple of versions including James Keelaghan's enchanting version (CD 'A Few Simple Verses'), but would appreciate any chord settings people out there use.

Many thanks


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 06 Mar 09 - 07:35 AM

There are several unrelated songs that go by this name (among others) but Keelaghan recorded an arrangement of the Copper Family version. That being the case, the relevant DT file is

CONSTANT LOVERS

The words there are transcribed from a recording by Martyn-Wyndham Read, but again it's the Copper set. They themselves have used several different titles for it over the years. Incidentally, you should disregard the comment quoted from Paul Adams there to the effect that Frank Purslow considered this an Irish song; that was a misunderstanding of somebody's, based on a confusion with a different song sometimes sharing the title. Frank didn't think this song Irish - it isn't, though of course versions have been found there.

OH MY LOVE IS GONE (Sussex)  also derives from the Copper Family set, though in this case a little altered by Cyril Tawney.

Number 466 in the Roud Folksong Index; Laws K18. For links to various past discussions here, see thread  music to song: Constant Lovers.  Includes a couple of ABCs: neither is quite right, but the first is the better of the two. There are suggested 'chords' in another thread mentioned there, but they are for an American form of the song and probably wouldn't suit. Note also that I was wrong in saying in that thread that there is any connection with 'Stow Brow' (Roud 185) - I was getting confused by the multiplicity of different song names myself at that point.


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 06 Mar 09 - 07:40 AM

And it isn't Laws K18! Sloppy editing on my part there.


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: Myrtle's cook
Date: 06 Mar 09 - 08:21 AM

Malcolm, that's very helpful - and interesting. Many thanks.


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 06 Mar 09 - 09:19 AM

Curious to see if this would be an incredibly beautiful new tune (new for me, of course), I went to the earlier thread and converted the first ABC in the Tune-o-tron. I have concluded that it is not an incredible new tune.

Like Malcolm, I don't think the ABC's posted there are accurate. If the first one is the best, it doesn't sound very natural. I think the note durations are off. Still, it gives a good idea of how the song goes.

As to chords, the tune was apparently composed without chordal accompaniment in mind. It moves up and down the scale a lot, and that makes it hard to put chords to it. Drones would probably be a nice addition if you want to work them out.


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: Bernard Quenby
Date: 06 Mar 09 - 10:26 AM

There is (in my humble opinion) a superb version of this on Steve Tilston's 'Such & Such' album.


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: GUEST
Date: 30 May 12 - 06:33 AM

Like Myrtle at top I've come to find chords for Constant
Lovers- beautiful song. Have been listening to Steeleye Span but disappointed to find none here. Am hoping someone will oblige and they wont be too complex!!! Jenny


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: JHW
Date: 30 May 12 - 06:45 AM

Do consider singing it unaccompanied; it's such a lovely melody. A night finisher of a chorus.


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: GUEST,Grishka
Date: 31 May 12 - 08:19 AM

Steeleye is here on YouTube. Chords are G Em Am D and C.

JHW has a point: the tune is not the "guitar waltz" that Steeleye try to make of it. It is certainly "harmonic", but relies on chord changes within single measures. An accompaniment of melody intruments or a choral arrangement may do it better justice.

There are many variants around, some of them obviously recent. I would appreciate if someone posted a reasonably authentic version with correct metre. In return, and if anyone is interested, I may post an arrangement. (In former times I wrote many folk song arrangements, mostly for choirs, but not always to my own satisfaction.)


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: breezy
Date: 31 May 12 - 07:08 PM

Dave Webber and Anni did it justice but I second the arrangement Steve Tilston does though he got it from another source

Webber's the unacc version , steve's is more upbeat and in waltz time

It would eb easier to learn from a sssssource singer rather than from just music

and expect some one to add sound effects


billows roaring for starters,,then the wind and the waves


melodically it reminds me of 'fathom the bowl' !!


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: Leadfingers
Date: 31 May 12 - 07:27 PM

Another of the 'Trad' songs that doesnt really need accompaniment , but SO many people want Chords


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 01 Jun 12 - 07:58 AM

I tried making a MIDI from the video by Steeleye Span. Now when I listen to it, it just doesn't sound right. It's hard to figure out timings, sometimes.

The tune is intriguing, but the words are foolish. He meets her for the first time and asks her to marry? What's up with that? What's wrong with saying "How do you do?"

Joe is unable to post MIDI's presently anyhow. I'm dropping this little project.


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: GUEST,Grishka
Date: 01 Jun 12 - 03:31 PM

Leadfingers, accompaniment does not necessarily mean chord symbols. This song sounds like early 19th century, in an idiom which in my opinion lends itself to harmonisation, though I agree it does not need it. There are other songs, not necessarily much older, where "functional harmony" is completely off.

Consider the following little choir arrangement that I just wrote; is it a possible interpretation, considering that we have a romantic ballad rather than a sea shanty?

X:1
T:Constant Lovers
I:abc-version 2.1
I:abc-creator MidiZyx2abc 1.07
I:linebreak $
M:3/4
C:Trad. England, Arr: Grishka, donated to the public domain
L:1/8
Q:1/4=110
%%score [ Soprano Alto Tenor Bass ]
K:Bb
V:Soprano
%%MIDI program 52
"^Very freely"F2| B2d2c2| B2A2B2| G2G2F2| E4E D | C2D2E2| F2G2A2| B2c2A2| % 8
w:As I was a-wal-king down by the sea-shore, Where the winds and the waves and the bil-lows did
B4A B | c2F2F2| c4c d | e2d2c2| d4f d | B4B A | G4G G | % 15
w:roar, There I heard a strange voice make a ter-ri-ble sound, Like the wind and the waves that did
(cd) e2c2| (B2A2)G F | (B3cd2| F6)| G2F3E | D4F F | G2c2B2| A4F2| B3c d2| % 24
w:e--cho a-round,_ Cry-ing: "Oh___ my love is gone! He's the youth I a-dore, He's gone and I
E e3d2| (dc) B2A2| B4|] % 27
w:ne-ver shall see_ him no more!"
V:Alto
%%MIDI program 52
F2| D2F2E2| D2F2F2| E2C2D2| E4C =B, | C2C2C2| C2F2F2| F2G2C2| % 8
w:As I was a-wal-king down by the sea-shore, Where the winds and the waves and the bil-lows did
B,4C C | C4C D | E4E F | G2F2E2| F4A2-| A A G2F2-| % 14
w:roar, There I heard a strange voice make a ter-ri-ble sound, Like_ the wind and
F F E2D B, | G2G2C2| (E2C2)E C | D4z2| (D3EF2)| E2D2C2-| C2B,2B, B, | E2E2G2-| % 22
w:_ the waves that did e-cho a-round,_ Cry-ing: "Oh, oh,__ my love is_ gone! He's the youth I a-
G2F2A,2| F3E F2| C G3B2| (=Bc) F2E2| D4|] % 27
w:-dore, He's gone and I ne-ver shall see_ him no more!"
V:Tenor clef=treble-8
%%MIDI program 52
F2| F2G2A2| B2c2d2| B2G2=B2| (c2e2)G G | c2c2c2| e2d2c2| f2_f2e2| % 8
w:As I was a-wal-king down by the sea-shore,_ Where the winds and the waves and the bil-lows did
d4F G | A4A B | F4c B | A2B2c2-| c2B2A F | d4f d | B4B d | % 15
w:roar, There I heard a strange voice make a ter-ri-ble_ sound, Like the wind and the waves that did
(c=B) c2g2| (_g2f2)c A | F4z2| (B3cd2)| G2A2A2-| A2G2F F | B2G2e2-| e2d2c2| B3A B2| % 24
w:e--cho a-round,_ Cry-ing: "Oh, oh,__ my love is_ gone! He's the youth I a--dore, He's gone and I
G c3d2| g2d2c2| B4|] % 27
w:ne-ver shall see him no more!"
V:Bass clef=bass
%%MIDI program 52
F,2| B,,2B,,2C,2| D,2C,2B,,2| E,2E,2F,2| (G,2C2)C, C, | C2B,2A,2| G,2F,2E,2| D,2C,2F,2| % 8
w:As I was a-wal-king down by the sea-shore,_ Where the winds and the waves and the bil-lows did
B,,4F, F, | F,4C, B,, | A,,4A,, G,, | F,,2G,,2A,,2| B,,4D, F, | G,4D, D, | E,4G, F, | % 15
w:roar, There I heard a strange voice make a ter-ri-ble sound, Like the wind and the waves that did
(E,D,) C,2E,2| (F,2F,,2)G,, A,, | B,,4z2| (D,3F,B,2)| E,2F,2^F,2| G,4D, D, | E,2C,2E,2| F,4E,2| % 23
w:e--cho a-round,_ Cry-ing: "Oh, oh,__ my love is gone! He's the youth I a-dore, He's
D,3C, B,,2| E, C,3G,2| E,2F,2F,,2| B,,4|] % 27
w:gone and I ne-ver shall see him no more!"


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: GUEST,Grishka
Date: 01 Jun 12 - 03:38 PM

Leeneia, he has met her before. He is the Eternal Rejected Lover, and she is the Eternal Mourner. And for your solace: whenever she drowns herself with her penknife, she's back on the next broadside.


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: Leadfingers
Date: 02 Jun 12 - 10:20 AM

Grishka - TOO many people hear Traditional songs and think they can ONLY be performed with a steady rhythm on a guitar - THATS why they want Chords !


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: GUEST,Grishka
Date: 02 Jun 12 - 01:24 PM

Exactly what I think, Leadbelly. Nothing wrong with campfire strumming or arpeggiation, but only for songs designed for it. Other songs require a different treatment. Unaccompanied singing and drones have been mentioned; many other techniques of accompaniment exist, applicable for specific styles of folk music.

But even for "harmonic" music, i.e. music with which ordinary chords do work in principle, the chord names alone do not give the complete picture. The logic of harmony becomes evident in real or imagined additional voices, connecting the single chord notes. The most audible such voice is the bass line. Moreover, often, as in this song, chords must change so quickly that trying to strum them on a guitar would ruin the rhythm. (An example is measure 7, unsatisfactory in Steeleye's version.)

An approach with distinct voices, as I tried above, seems the most adequate solution to me. Depending on your taste, you can imagine melody instruments instead of choir singers.

Good guitarists (like Steve Tilston, whose version of this song I have not heard yet) can imitate this "voicing" style on their instrument to some extent. The problem is that if it is "art", some listeners find it is no longer "folk". Certainly it takes a lot of learning, in theory and practice, but so does, say, Scottish fiddling.

I would appreciate anyone's (critical) opinion on that, in particular from those who have more of a "folkie" identity than myself.

BTW, since the Tune-O-Tron was mentioned above: The most up-to-date online converter for ABC now seems to be Folkinfo.


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 02 Jun 12 - 08:37 PM

Grishka, thanks for explaing about drowning and the penknife. What a relief!

Recently I held a class on mountain dulcimer, and I told my students, "In the olden days, people didn't live as long as they do now. And we all know why. It's because in the olden days, people died of love."


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 02 Jun 12 - 08:50 PM

I have a friend who is a guitar natural, and she joins me for early and folk music once a month. All I have to do is put the chord symbols on, and she takes off. She plays high, she plays low, she plays thick texture, she plays thin. She does little runs. The one thing she almost never does is strum an even blanga-blanga-blang.

I use chord symbols to improvise at the piano. I have devised or borrowed the following:

p - chords don't harmonize. minimize accompaniment

N.C. - no chord

Am! - really hit it!

G +5, play only the tonic and fifth of the chord

G8 - play octave G's, just the G notes, not the G chord

> - this is the 'less than' sign, the closest I can come to the sign in choral music which means 'get softer.'

and finally, the Lemon Mark. I put yellow colored pencil over a note to show that it is dissonant - tangy but not sour, if you will. Waltzes get the most Lemon Marks.

I agree with you that 'Constant Lovers' doesn't lend itself to chords. It moves stepwise too much.

Now I'm off to Texas.


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers; Song Challenge
From: GUEST,Grishka
Date: 05 Jun 12 - 05:22 PM

I have spent some more time trying to grasp the essence of this beautiful song. I must concede that the lyrics are not quite up to standard. For example, "He's the youth I adore" does not sound right to me, referring to a dead person. Another sticking point is "each other's charms".

Several singers have tried various little improvements, often with the effect that their version now is neither really logical nor original (whatever that may be).

About adoring youth - anyone feel free to use the following true story as a Song Challenge, or for a parody (too bad that I am not a poet myself):

When I was about 40 and freshly split-up, I went on a holiday down by the sea shore. In the usual circle of the similarly fated there, a woman of about 25, quite pleasant to look at, told us that her (ex-)boyfriend was 18. She was extremely sad and hoped very much that he would return to her, since she particularly valued youth. I gave her the usual sympathetic words and some hints about her career. One year later - I was in good hands again - she suddenly rang me and suggested we may meet, but only if I really wanted ...


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: Bugsy
Date: 05 Jun 12 - 09:30 PM

Here's a lovely version

Constant lovers

CHeers

Bugsy


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: Myrtle's cook
Date: 06 Jun 12 - 08:44 AM

Interesting to see how this thread developed since initation over 3 years ago!

When I made the request to Mudcatters for chords it was because I didn't really have the vocal confidence to sing this unaccompanied. However, having been unable to locate/assign chords that did the song justice I embarked on learning it unaccompanied (based somewhere between Dave Weber/Anni F's excellent version and the lullaby like version recorded by James Keelaghan).

And (although some who have heard me may disagree), I'm really glad I did as it captures the sincerity of the song's feeling and has also helped unlock several other vocally demanding 'traditional' songs.


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: GUEST,Grishka
Date: 06 Jun 12 - 04:13 PM

Myrtle's cook, technically, we are responding to Guest Jenny's request of 30 May 12 - 06:33 AM; she wisely used an existing thread.

Yes, singing unaccompanied in public is particularly demanding - not only hitting the notes and keeping up intonation, but also conveying the tune and the lyrics in a meaningful and tasteful way.

The song is certainly "sincere", though not to be taken literally (as we observed before; I strongly advise against Breezy's realistic sound effects, which would in their consequence include a strange voice making a terrible sound).

Our Jon Boden does it as expressively as ever; his whole project is praised by many Mudcatters, for good reasons.

There are other possible ways to be "sincere", though, avoiding expressionism and waltz/lullaby alike. Would someone with an ear for harmonies like to comment on measure 7 in various versions, including my above proposal?

Being a "natural" as mentioned by Leeneia (02 Jun 12 - 08:50 PM) is not enough, it takes a good knowledge of the required style. (For example, church organists can usually accompany a hymn of their own tradition at first sight of the melody, but may be at a loss with, say, so-called Gospel music.)


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: breezy
Date: 07 Jun 12 - 03:32 PM

Steve Tilston appears tomorrow at crouch end

request it

see sep thread


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Subject: RE: Chord Req: Constant lovers
From: Leadfingers
Date: 07 Jun 12 - 06:56 PM

The only reason I started on Guitar was because I wanted to do (At Least) floor spots in clubs , and then discovered that the songs I REALLY wanted to sing were the humourous Contempory songs of people like Leon Rosselsson , which require a LOT more Vocal Expertise than most basic Traditional Songs ! Now , Morte than forty years down the road I CAN manage a lot of Trad songs , but tend to NOT use Guitar except on very few !
The Guitar is for the 'New' songs I do .


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