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Somebody Else's Song

SPB-Cooperator 30 Sep 09 - 08:01 AM
Crane Driver 30 Sep 09 - 09:07 AM
olddude 30 Sep 09 - 09:19 AM
SPB-Cooperator 30 Sep 09 - 09:29 AM
Willa 30 Sep 09 - 10:46 AM
TheSnail 30 Sep 09 - 10:56 AM
scouse 30 Sep 09 - 11:03 AM
Dan Schatz 30 Sep 09 - 11:44 AM
BobKnight 30 Sep 09 - 11:48 AM
ClaireBear 30 Sep 09 - 12:12 PM
VirginiaTam 30 Sep 09 - 02:23 PM
Tim Leaning 01 Oct 09 - 01:52 PM
GUEST,Guest John hartford 01 Oct 09 - 03:26 PM
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Subject: Sombody Else's Song
From: SPB-Cooperator
Date: 30 Sep 09 - 08:01 AM

Has anyone every been to a club or session, and start singing a song not realising that the person who wrote it is sitting/standing next to you?

That happened once to me where I learned a song from someone who did not cite the writer, and on the occasion in question, I launched into said song to be met by a cry of "I wrote this", at which point I invited the writer to finish it.


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Subject: RE: Sombody Else's Song
From: Crane Driver
Date: 30 Sep 09 - 09:07 AM

I, and most of the songwriters I know, would be only too glad to hear someone sing something we've written - it doesn't happen often enough. It's really the only way to tell if you've written something worthwhile - as the author, you're too close to your own songs to judge. Only if other people consider them worth singing do you know you got it right.

I have on occasions heard other people singing my songs, and I've always been delighted, even if they've changed things - the song then has a life of it's own. It's like seeing your child start work. Other interpretations can bring out things I never knew were there. Just because I wrote it, doesn't mean that the way I sing it is the only or the best way.

So don't be afraid to sing someone's song to them - it's the greatest compliment you can give a songwriter.

Andrew


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Subject: RE: Sombody Else's Song
From: olddude
Date: 30 Sep 09 - 09:19 AM

Last month a local country group was playing at the park and did one of mine. I don't know them. I was absolutely thrilled


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Subject: RE: Sombody Else's Song
From: SPB-Cooperator
Date: 30 Sep 09 - 09:29 AM

I had known the writer in question for many years, but I didn't know the song was his...


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Subject: RE: Sombody Else's Song
From: Willa
Date: 30 Sep 09 - 10:46 AM

My sentiments exactly, Andrew.


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Subject: RE: Sombody Else's Song
From: TheSnail
Date: 30 Sep 09 - 10:56 AM

I don't write songs but I have come up with an occasional tune. It's my ambition to hear one of them at a session and be told that a) it's traditional, b) it's Irish, c) I'm playing it wrong.


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Subject: RE: Sombody Else's Song
From: scouse
Date: 30 Sep 09 - 11:03 AM

I sang a song once. When I'd finished to spot I went for a beer an a friend came an said "That second song you sang was great! it wasn't till the second verse I realized I wrote it!!!!) 'nough said.
As Aye,
Phil.


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Subject: RE: Sombody Else's Song
From: Dan Schatz
Date: 30 Sep 09 - 11:44 AM

As a songwriter, I am completely honored when somebody tells me they want to learn one of my songs. But they never sing it in front of me, so I've still never had the pleasure of hearing my own song from other voices. It would be, as Andrew says, the highest honor.

Here's a story from the other side, though. When I was in graduate school, we had a big musical/comedy night each year. I wasn't going to be involved my first year, until the very last minute, when a friend and I dreamed up a series of parodies to 60s pop-folk songs ("Puff the Magic Dragon," "Turn Turn Turn" and the like), all about the sorry state of the shared kitchen in one of the dormitories. I performed the medley, complete with Pete Seeger imitation. (I was respectful, I'll have you know - the man is a hero.) It was one of the popular acts of the night. After the show, Noel Stookey, better known as "Paul" from Peter Paul and Mary, came up to me, complimented me, and told me how good he thought my Pete Seeger imitation was. I'd forgotten his wife was a classmate....

Dan


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Subject: RE: Sombody Else's Song
From: BobKnight
Date: 30 Sep 09 - 11:48 AM

I went to a session, and as I walked in, a guy was singing one of my songs. He had his back to me, so didn't realise I had come in, but knew something was up when the rest of the audience started laughing.

Gotta agree with Crane Driver, it's great to hear your songs performed by other people. It let's you know you must be doing something right


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Subject: RE: Sombody Else's Song
From: ClaireBear
Date: 30 Sep 09 - 12:12 PM

At Renaissance faires, I've occasionally heard renditions of songs written by my old singing partner Jon Berger and me 25 years ago that have since been absorbed into the faire folkstream and are now thought traditional. It's a really interesting feeling.

We discussed, the first time it happened, whether we wanted to speak up as the songwriters, but decided in the end that it was a greater honor to have written something "trad."


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Subject: RE: Somebody Else's Song
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 30 Sep 09 - 02:23 PM

This past May (during Rochester Sweeps) at the Good Intent pub in Rochester Kent, UK, I sang Cyril Tawney's Grey Funnel Line. As I introduced the song, I thanked a certain important figure to me who was in the session for encouraging me to sing in public. This man "Gastove" got me to sing exactly 2 years before at similar session in another pub during the Rochester Sweeps.

He was quite choked up at my performance. I thought maybe because I butchered the guitar accompaniment. Later his mate, came over to me, put a some kind of special seaman's cap on my head and told me that I was now an honorary member (of what I am not sure) and the "Gastove" had been a friend and sometime musical partner to Mr. Tawney.

That was a good moment.


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Subject: RE: Somebody Else's Song
From: Tim Leaning
Date: 01 Oct 09 - 01:52 PM

I agree with all the above it absolutely great to have your songs performed by someone else.
Always feel complimented by it because it is a compliment.
Not had a parody sung at me yet,what does that feel like?


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Subject: RE: Somebody Else's Song
From: GUEST,Guest John hartford
Date: 01 Oct 09 - 03:26 PM

Hi

I find this an interesting thread. As a person who does not actually write original songs but occasionally takes the liberty of " arranging" someone else's I am always careful that when I do this I announce that the song was NOT mine but one I have played around with.

On a couple of occasions I have had the writers of the original songs who were present unknown to me, come up to and thank me for singing the song and that they had no problems with the changes I had made and the way in which I presented the songs..phew !!!

How ever one night I recognised a guy in the club so I deliberately sang one of his songs ....but (many of you will identify with this ) when I came to start the song I starting singing the wrong tune, one I made up as I went along. Blushing like mad at the end of the song I apologised and told the audience what I had done.

To my surprise the guy came to me and praised me for "re-arranging" his song. I still am in contact and on occasions we even sing together...he laughs it off to the audiences saying that he's just making sure I sing the right version...lol

I take my hat off to all of you song-writers for providing such a wide range of material for us non-tunesmiths to perform.

long may your craft continue..

regards

john


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