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Today bright Phoebus she smiled down?

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Howard Jones 05 Jun 14 - 08:32 AM
GUEST,leeneia 05 Jun 14 - 10:11 AM
Dave Hanson 05 Jun 14 - 10:23 AM
selby 05 Jun 14 - 10:23 AM
GUEST,Ed 05 Jun 14 - 10:40 AM
Steve Gardham 05 Jun 14 - 12:52 PM
selby 05 Jun 14 - 01:21 PM
Dave Hanson 05 Jun 14 - 03:28 PM
Howard Jones 05 Jun 14 - 04:33 PM
Steve Gardham 05 Jun 14 - 04:59 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 05 Jun 14 - 07:53 PM
GUEST,Guest 05 Jun 14 - 08:46 PM
GUEST,Jack Sprocket 05 Jun 14 - 08:51 PM
GUEST,leeneia 06 Jun 14 - 07:40 AM
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Subject: Today bright Phoebus she smiled down?
From: Howard Jones
Date: 05 Jun 14 - 08:32 AM

"Today bright Phoebus she smiled down on me for the very first time..."

Lal Waterson's song seems to refer to the sun, and the album sleeve also suggests this. However Phoebus was another name for the Greek sun god Apollo, and male. So was this a simple mistake on Lal's part, perhaps thinking of the woman's name Phoebe (a different classical reference), or a feminist statement, or something else?

I've just received a newsletter from the Sheffield Bright Phoebus club with this phrase as its tagline, and it never fails to irritate my inner pedant. Great song though.


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Subject: RE: Today bright Phoebus she smiled down?
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 05 Jun 14 - 10:11 AM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mivxQR8MoNU

The lead singer is male, and he's definitely singing 'she.'

It's just one of those things. Stuff happens.


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Subject: RE: Today bright Phoebus she smiled down?
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 05 Jun 14 - 10:23 AM

This is what Lal wrote, so live with it. everyone else does.

Dave H


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Subject: RE: Today bright Phoebus she smiled down?
From: selby
Date: 05 Jun 14 - 10:23 AM

It may have been Mike Waterson wrote Bright Phoebus see link below

http://www.theguardian.com/music/2013/oct/10/bright-phoebus-waterson-toured-hawley-cocker-album


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Subject: RE: Today bright Phoebus she smiled down?
From: GUEST,Ed
Date: 05 Jun 14 - 10:40 AM

No 'maybe' Selby.

Whilst the record label simply credits it to 'Waterson', the sleeve is clear in its assignation to 'Mike Waterson'

Given that Phoebus simply means 'radiant', I don't really see the need for the term to be male, or insist on the Apollo connection.

The sun has often be described as being female anyway: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_deity#Male_and_female

Just enjoy a very fine song...


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Subject: RE: Today bright Phoebus she smiled down?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 05 Jun 14 - 12:52 PM

You said it yourself, Howard, pedant. Mike didn't have a degree in classics and neither did Lal, but we didn't seem to think it necessary at the time!


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Subject: RE: Today bright Phoebus she smiled down?
From: selby
Date: 05 Jun 14 - 01:21 PM

Why does Howard want to be a pendant?
Keith


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Subject: RE: Today bright Phoebus she smiled down?
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 05 Jun 14 - 03:28 PM

My apologies.


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Subject: RE: Today bright Phoebus she smiled down?
From: Howard Jones
Date: 05 Jun 14 - 04:33 PM

Oh I can live with it, and it grates much less in the song than seeing it down in print. I just wondered if there was anything more to it, or whether as Leenia says it's just one of those things.

Ed is right about the meaning, but the phrase 'bright Phoebus' is common in English literature and invariably refers to the sun, alluding to Phoebus Apollo, and takes the male pronoun.

I'd always thought it was one of Lal's songs rather than Mike's, I'm happy to be corrected. I didn't buy the album when it came out, being rather too snobbishly traddy at the time, something I now rather regret. It's a true classic with some great songs.


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Subject: RE: Today bright Phoebus she smiled down?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 05 Jun 14 - 04:59 PM

'being rather too snobbishly traddy at the time, something I now rather regret'. Me too I have to admit. Fortunately my wife didn't share my snobbishness.


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Subject: RE: Today bright Phoebus she smiled down?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 05 Jun 14 - 07:53 PM

Tom Phoebus was a starting pitcher in major league baseball. In 1968, he threw a no-hitter. Surely bright Phoebus.


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Subject: RE: Today bright Phoebus she smiled down?
From: GUEST,Guest
Date: 05 Jun 14 - 08:46 PM

So Q!

Er?

A no-hitter means absolutely nothing to the vast majority of people on this (east) side of the pond.

Being interested in sport as a healthy recreation I can probably guess what the phrase means and to be honest it is a much more interesting topic than trying to second guess what two lovely, but no longer with us, people might of meant, whichever of them was responsible for a great song of its time.   

DOH.


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Subject: RE: Today bright Phoebus she smiled down?
From: GUEST,Jack Sprocket
Date: 05 Jun 14 - 08:51 PM

By the bloomin' cringe, if Bright Phoebus smiles on you, you know what it means. She did for me, a long time ago, and I'l never forget it.


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Subject: RE: Today bright Phoebus she smiled down?
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 06 Jun 14 - 07:40 AM

You're sweet, Jack.

I'm sure that's exactly what the song means, too.

Nobody's mentioned that the song has a very lovely tune.


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