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Scots misty mountain song - identify!

Northerner 10 Jul 13 - 11:28 AM
Northerner 10 Jul 13 - 11:50 AM
Jack Campin 10 Jul 13 - 12:29 PM
Northerner 10 Jul 13 - 12:53 PM
GUEST,kendall 10 Jul 13 - 12:56 PM
Jim McLean 10 Jul 13 - 01:15 PM
Jack Campin 10 Jul 13 - 01:17 PM
Charmion 10 Jul 13 - 03:22 PM
kendall 10 Jul 13 - 07:07 PM
Jack Campin 10 Jul 13 - 07:48 PM
Sandy Mc Lean 10 Jul 13 - 10:28 PM
Northerner 11 Jul 13 - 09:35 AM
Jack Campin 11 Jul 13 - 09:54 AM
sheila 11 Jul 13 - 10:44 AM
Northerner 11 Jul 13 - 11:39 AM
clueless don 12 Jul 13 - 08:48 AM
Northerner 12 Jul 13 - 09:26 AM
Jack Campin 12 Jul 13 - 09:56 AM
Mysha 12 Jul 13 - 07:06 PM
Reinhard 12 Jul 13 - 11:37 PM
ollaimh 12 Jul 13 - 11:48 PM
Northerner 15 Jul 13 - 09:58 AM
Jack Campin 15 Jul 13 - 11:01 AM
leeneia 16 Jul 13 - 09:25 AM
Northerner 16 Jul 13 - 09:56 AM
leeneia 16 Jul 13 - 11:37 AM
Mysha 19 Aug 13 - 10:22 PM
GUEST,MorwenEdhelwen1 20 Aug 13 - 05:20 AM
GUEST 20 Aug 13 - 02:01 PM
PHJim 20 Aug 13 - 09:51 PM
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Subject: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: Northerner
Date: 10 Jul 13 - 11:28 AM

This is a long shot. Last night at the Cutty Wren Folk Club, Redcar, I got talking to a lady who comes from Tongue (north of Scotland). This lady had enjoyed my singing of Fhir a Bhata (I sing the English translation but I think this lady knows it in Gaelic). We got talking about lovely Scots songs - my parents were Scots and I also lived in Aberdeen for a year when younger. This lady started to sing a beautiful song - something about misty mountains. A Scottish song, one that I remember hearing sung many many years ago. I can't remember the title. Anyway I started singing it along with her. I don't remember hearing it sung at any of the folk clubs so maybe it comes from the time of the "White Heather Club." A lovely melody. I'd love to sing it again. Can anyone work out what it might be? Sorry, I can't give any clues apart from it being about misty mountains - and no, it's not the song from "The Hobbit..."


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: Northerner
Date: 10 Jul 13 - 11:50 AM

I've been able to answer my own question, thanks to searching on Google. The song is "The Mist Covered Mountains of Home." I don't recall hearing it at the folk clubs at all so it is probably 40-50 years since I heard it last. Plenty of versions on YouTube, though mainly as an instrumental.


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: Jack Campin
Date: 10 Jul 13 - 12:29 PM

Or in Gaelic "Chi mi na mor-bheanna". Very popular as a pipe tune.

It's derived from the English song "Johnny's Too Long at the Fair". The Gaelic songwriter said to use that tune for it, but it drifted a bit over the next generation and what's sung now is clearly a different though related tune.


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: Northerner
Date: 10 Jul 13 - 12:53 PM

Thank you Jack for that additional information. I think the tune has been used quite a bit, and a very fine tune it is too.


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: GUEST,kendall
Date: 10 Jul 13 - 12:56 PM

..hush, hush, time to be sleeping hush' hush' dreams come a creeping, dreams of peace and of freedom, don't cry in your sleep bonnie bairnee. Lovely song.


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: Jim McLean
Date: 10 Jul 13 - 01:15 PM

Kendall, I wrote this song to the pipe version of Mist Covered Mountains. The original song Chi MI na Morbheanna was written in Gaelic to a variant of Johnny's so Lomg at the Fair. The pipe version is slightly different and I preferred it and altered it slightly to suit the mood of my lyrics as a Highland Clearance song, Smile in Your Sleep. Some folk call it Hush, Hush after the chorus.


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: Jack Campin
Date: 10 Jul 13 - 01:17 PM

That's Jim Maclean's "Smile In Your Sleep", a recent song set to the pipe tune. The one Northerner is referring to is 100 years older.


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: Charmion
Date: 10 Jul 13 - 03:22 PM

Chi mi na Morbheanna is very popular in Cape Breton, both as a fiddle tune and as a song. I learned it about 1976 in Halifax.


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: kendall
Date: 10 Jul 13 - 07:07 PM

A rose, by any other name...


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: Jack Campin
Date: 10 Jul 13 - 07:48 PM

The songs are NOT at all the same. One is a joyful song about returning home, the other is a bitter polemic about being driven into exile given an additional ironic edge by being cast as a lullaby. Even if you were playing them as instrumentals you'd play them differently according to which texts you had in mind.


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: Sandy Mc Lean
Date: 10 Jul 13 - 10:28 PM

The only song that I remember my father ever singing was Chi Mi Na Morbheanna in his Gaelic mother tongue. For that it remains entrenched in my heart!


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: Northerner
Date: 11 Jul 13 - 09:35 AM

Thank you Jim for that further information. Your version is very fine too. However, as it is the older version that the lady at the Cutty Wren was singing to me, that is the version that I will be learning to sing. I am sure this lady will be thrilled to pieces when I sing it at the club in a few weeks' time.

Thank you everyone for your input. Jack, I may be up in Edinburgh again sometime this autumn; it's a few years since I was last up. Maybe bump into you at a folk club or session. I play ukulele now as well as sing; not a Scottish instrument, I know, but never mind...


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: Jack Campin
Date: 11 Jul 13 - 09:54 AM

Edinburgh ukulele scene

A google for "scottish ukulele" will show a lot more.

I bought my other half an old banjo uke for her birthday so there's even one in the house.


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: sheila
Date: 11 Jul 13 - 10:44 AM

My family (from the western side of the Kyle of Tongue) still sing this song, both in English and Gaelic.


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: Northerner
Date: 11 Jul 13 - 11:39 AM

Thank you Sheila. The lady at the Cutty Wren Folk Club also comes from Tongue - only met her on Tuesday - you may well know her. Don't know her name yet. It's a small world. I have a feeling that she is a Gaelic speaker. My parents were Scots, but from the Edinburgh area, not Gaelic speakers.

Hi Jack. I'm looking forward to my trip to Edinburgh, sounds like I will have a great time - don't know the dates yet. Thank you for the link.

Diane


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: clueless don
Date: 12 Jul 13 - 08:48 AM

It's a lovely song and waltz, in my opinion. If you speed up the melody, you get the jig "The Mist Covered Mountains", which is a standard tune in Irish music.

Don


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: Northerner
Date: 12 Jul 13 - 09:26 AM

Yes, it's a lovely melody. I will start by singing it as an unaccompanied song and then hopefully go on to add a simple accompaniment with my ukulele or maybe guitar.


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: Jack Campin
Date: 12 Jul 13 - 09:56 AM

I find the Irish tune unrecognizable as the same one. It's not simply speeded up, the changes are far more drastic than the differences between "The Mist Covered Mountains" and "Johnny's Too Long at the Fair".


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: Mysha
Date: 12 Jul 13 - 07:06 PM

What's the song from "The Hobbit..."?
                                                                Mysha


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: Reinhard
Date: 12 Jul 13 - 11:37 PM

Far over the Misty Mountains cold,
To dungeons deep and caverns old,
We must away, ere break of day,
To seek our pale enchanted gold.

etc.


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: ollaimh
Date: 12 Jul 13 - 11:48 PM

chi mi na morbheanna was a regular back home in guysborough county and south cape Breton when I was young.

years ago I went to the singers club in London. there was a poncy git(my opinion now not then) singing and English version. common enough even in ole nova scotia for the verses, but we sang the chorus is gaidhlig. so I got to the chourus and every body was singing along, so I sang in gaidhlig, and a surprise to me they all sang the chorus in English. the leade galred at me like I had farted in front of the queen. (which I might happily do) . they told me "we sing the songs from our own culture". folk pretentiousness at its worst. they had no idea Canadians might speak gaidhlig(a bit).

I still love the song but there are many many more that are , well, more beautiful.   tha mi shigh tha mi thin, in either language or ma than gal gileas(sp?) to mention two.


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: Northerner
Date: 15 Jul 13 - 09:58 AM

Ollaimh - singers club in London? That sounds suspiciously like Ewan McColl. Gaelic speakers don't only come from Scotland - surprised he didn't know that. I didn't like that "own culture" bit either. I was born and brought up in England but to Scottish parents so part of my culture is Scottish - I sing Scottish songs. Nowadays people tend to be less parochial I find.

It's a lovely song, and yes, there are plenty of other lovely songs. I don't know many of the ones sung in Gaelic so obviously I've missed quite a lot.


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: Jack Campin
Date: 15 Jul 13 - 11:01 AM

ollaimh is just being vindictive, racist and paranoid as usual.

MacColl took his adopted name from that of a 19th century Canadian Gaelic poet, so obviously he knew there were Gaelic speakers in Canada.

Or ollaimh could in fact have been writing about London, Ontario and hoping people would misunderstand.


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: leeneia
Date: 16 Jul 13 - 09:25 AM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z9wH-NIKJTg

that's the URL for a lovely song sung by the Rankin Family. Is that the old (and presumably public domain) song that was asked about in the first post? Whether it is or not, it's a fine melody. I've printed it out to play at home. (Found it on JC's Tune Finder.)

When people speak of 'Johnny's so Long at the Fair," are they referring to

"Oh, dear what can the matter be? (3x)
Johnny's so long at the fair.
He promised to bring me a garland of posies
He promised to bring me a basket of roses
He promised to bring a bonnie blue ribbon to tie up my bonnie brown hair."

If so, the A part is similar, but the B parts are quite different.


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: Northerner
Date: 16 Jul 13 - 09:56 AM

Hello Leenia. It is the A part of "Johnny's So Long at the Fair" that is being referred to. Yes, I'd found the Rankin Family singing the song, beautiful!


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: leeneia
Date: 16 Jul 13 - 11:37 AM

Thanks


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: Mysha
Date: 19 Aug 13 - 10:22 PM

Hi,

Sorry about that. Knowing that the book has several songs, I read 'it's not the song from "The Hobbit..."' as meaning 'it's not the single song from "The Hobbit"', and thus assumed there was a film version of The Hobbit with only a single song in it, and wondered what that might be.

It was only later that I realised it could have been intended as 'it's not the one from "The Hobbit..."', referring to the song in The Hobbit mentioning the Misty Mountains.

                                                                Mysha


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: GUEST,MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 20 Aug 13 - 05:20 AM

I'll admit that as a huge Tolkien fan, I thought of the Dwarven Song Of Old Wealth * right away.

*The name of the song that starts "far over the Misty Mountains cold/To dungeons deep and caverns old"


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Aug 13 - 02:01 PM

From one Northener to another - I sing this song regularly (Mist covered mountains of home)might even sing it tonight at our regular Tuesday session, now you've reminded me! Cheers, Al


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Subject: RE: Scots misty mountain song - identify!
From: PHJim
Date: 20 Aug 13 - 09:51 PM

I always think of the ceilidh scene from the movie Local Hero, one of my favourite films.

Ceilidh scene from Local Hero.


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