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Lyr Req: Black is the Colour

DigiTrad:
BLACK IS THE COLOR OF MY TRUE LOVE'S HAIR (1)
BLACK IS THE COLOUR (2)


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Leadfingers 08 Jan 11 - 09:34 PM
Kent Davis 08 Jan 11 - 10:14 PM
Kent Davis 08 Jan 11 - 10:19 PM
Leadfingers 09 Jan 11 - 06:16 AM
Mike Yates 09 Jan 11 - 06:46 AM
Jim Dixon 12 Jan 11 - 06:46 PM
Jim Dixon 12 Jan 11 - 06:53 PM
MGM·Lion 12 Jan 11 - 10:44 PM
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Subject: Lyr Req: Black is the Colour
From: Leadfingers
Date: 08 Jan 11 - 09:34 PM

SO many singers in UK credit Christie Moore with this , despite him - On a Live Album - saying he first heard it in 1968 ? ! (Hamish Imlach)? and the John Jacob Niles connection !
I've wandered through a lot of now dead links trying to find the Original J J N lyric and tune - Can anyone with a good memory (Or a better song book than me) be of assistance ?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Black is the Colour
From: Kent Davis
Date: 08 Jan 11 - 10:14 PM

Perhaps this will be helpful: http://media.photobucket.com/popular/video/allpopular/alan1955/JohnJacobNiles-BlackIsTheColorOfMyT.flv?o=1936

Kent


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Black is the Colour
From: Kent Davis
Date: 08 Jan 11 - 10:19 PM

Leadfingers,

I know you've already looked here but, for the sake of guests who might not be as familiar with the DT, here is another link: @displaysong.cfm?SongID=665

Kent


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Black is the Colour
From: Leadfingers
Date: 09 Jan 11 - 06:16 AM

Thanks Kent ! Though I am NOT impressed with J J N 's treatment of it !


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Black is the Colour
From: Mike Yates
Date: 09 Jan 11 - 06:46 AM

Here is a set of words from the Appalachian singer Dellie Norton that I recorded some years ago, together with my notes from the album "Far in the Mountains" volumes 3 & 4 (Musical Traditions MTCD323-4).

Black is the Colour (Roud 3103)
(Sung by Dellie Norton at her home in Sodom Laurel, Madison County, NC. 26.8.80)

My pretty little pink, so fare you well.
You've slighted me, but I wish you well.
If never on earth I no more see,
I cain't slight you like you've slighted me.

The winter have broke and the leaves are green.
The time has passed that we have seen.
But I hope the time will shortly come,
Never you and I will be as one.

Black is the colour of my truelove's hair.
Her home is on some island fair.
The prettiest face and the neatest hands.
I love the ground whereon she stands.

Off to Clyde for a weep and mourn.
Dissatisfied, I never can sleep.
I'll write to you in a few short lines.
I'd suffer death, ten thousand times.

One of the most beautiful of the Appalachian lyric songs, which Dellie begins with a verse from the separate song Come My Pretty Little Pink. According to Roger deV Renwick (Recentering Anglo/American Folksong. 2001. pp. 51 - 52), the song is similar, in parts, to versions of The Week Before Easter and to the song The Rambling Boy, which contains verses such as:

The rose is red, the stem is green
The time is past that I have seen
It may be more, it may be few
But I hope to spend them all with you.

Or

Oh my pretty little miss sixteen years old
Her hair just as yeller as the shining gold
The prettiest face and the sweetest hands
Bless the ground on where she stands.

Cecil Sharp noted a single set from Mrs Lizzie Roberts of nearby Hot Springs, NC, in 1916 (see English Folk Songs from the Southern Appalachians (1932) vol.2 p.31). The reference to the river Clyde suggests that it may be based on an older Scottish song.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Black is the Colour
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 12 Jan 11 - 06:46 PM

There are a several videos on YouTube, not of J. J. Niles himself, unfortunately, but of others probably using his arrangement.

Go here.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Black is the Colour
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 12 Jan 11 - 06:53 PM

WorldCat.org lists the original sheet music from 1936 as well as several later arrangements, and a couple of songbooks that contain the song. By following links, you might be able to locate one in a library near you.

Go here.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Black is the Colour
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 12 Jan 11 - 10:44 PM

Mrs Roberts' version of 1916 from C Sharp & M Karpeles' "Southern Appalachians" collections, refd to above by Mike Yates, is also reprinted in a Faber paperback selection of 1968 called [somewhat misleadingly] "Eighty English Folk Songs".

~Michael~


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