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Trad British tunes for memorial/burial?

Marion 29 Mar 16 - 07:25 PM
Jack Campin 29 Mar 16 - 08:02 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 29 Mar 16 - 09:19 PM
GUEST,mg 30 Mar 16 - 12:05 AM
Keith A of Hertford 30 Mar 16 - 02:38 AM
GUEST,Dave 30 Mar 16 - 01:52 PM
Jack Campin 30 Mar 16 - 03:37 PM
GUEST,Dave 30 Mar 16 - 04:12 PM
GUEST,Ebor Fiddler 30 Mar 16 - 06:51 PM
BobKnight 30 Mar 16 - 07:23 PM
GUEST,Marion 30 Mar 16 - 10:21 PM
GUEST,Dave 31 Mar 16 - 02:10 AM
Keith A of Hertford 31 Mar 16 - 03:33 AM
GUEST,Dave 31 Mar 16 - 03:46 AM
Jack Campin 31 Mar 16 - 06:46 AM
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Subject: Trad British tunes for memorial/burial?
From: Marion
Date: 29 Mar 16 - 07:25 PM

Hello Mudcatters.

I've been working on a song about British home children who died in Canada; it has recently come to light that there is an umarked mass grave for such children in Toronto. Some people are organizing to erect a monument in their memory, so my goal is to have a song for the occasion.

(Further info here: British home child monument project)

I'd like to reference a traditional memorial tune in my song, e.g., by using the melody, or quoting from it in breaks between verses). Do you have suggestions about an appropriate tune?

I've considered Flowers of the Forest, but I'm concerned that it may be too strongly associated with military funerals. Is that true, or is it also a standard in civilian funerals?

Thanks, Marion


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Subject: RE: Trad British tunes for memorial/burial?
From: Jack Campin
Date: 29 Mar 16 - 08:02 PM

"Flowers of the Forest" is mainly Scottish. It's not originally military, and it's a beautiful tune if you can find a NON-military version (sung, flute or fiddle). The pipe version is a horrendous mutilation.

"Abide with Me" or "You'll Never Walk Alone" are more neutrally pan-British. If you want to reference the 1950s and 1960s specifically (which I guess is when most of the deaths took place?), "Abide with Me" is probably your only option. Or perhaps "Blow the Wind Southerly", which everybody in Britain at that time would have known, and has the right feel, but it isn't and wasn't commonly used for memorials.


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Subject: RE: Trad British tunes for memorial/burial?
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 29 Mar 16 - 09:19 PM

They are kids...and forever will remain kids.

ALL kids enjoy "The Worms Crawl In."

Sincerely,
Gargoyle

Don't make this some morbid adult's teary eyed reflection.


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Subject: RE: Trad British tunes for memorial/burial?
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 30 Mar 16 - 12:05 AM

how about fairest lord jesus...german originally but sung by the children in the children's crusade... very pretty...


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Subject: RE: Trad British tunes for memorial/burial?
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 30 Mar 16 - 02:38 AM

You could use childrens' Sunday School hymns.

Jesus wants me for a sunbeam, would go well.

Yes Jesus loves me.

What a friend we have in Jesus.

All things bright and beautiful, another good one.

Give me oil in my lamp.


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Subject: RE: Trad British tunes for memorial/burial?
From: GUEST,Dave
Date: 30 Mar 16 - 01:52 PM

The Day thou gavest Lord has ended, tune by C.C Scholefield.

Repton (Dear Lord and Father of Mankind), tune by CHH Parry although the words to the hymn are by J. G. Whittier, who was American.

Cwm Rhondda (Welsh of course).

Quite a few of those mentioned above are not British at all, in particular You'll Never Walk Alone.


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Subject: RE: Trad British tunes for memorial/burial?
From: Jack Campin
Date: 30 Mar 16 - 03:37 PM

You'll Never Walk Alone may have been written by an American but it's a British tune now. It never acquired the same significance in the US that it has over here.


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Subject: RE: Trad British tunes for memorial/burial?
From: GUEST,Dave
Date: 30 Mar 16 - 04:12 PM

Sure, I guess I failed to appreciate the significance of the Robson and Jerome cover.


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Subject: RE: Trad British tunes for memorial/burial?
From: GUEST,Ebor Fiddler
Date: 30 Mar 16 - 06:51 PM

I think that Gerry Marsden's version was the more influential Dave.

Chris B.


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Subject: RE: Trad British tunes for memorial/burial?
From: BobKnight
Date: 30 Mar 16 - 07:23 PM

The Land O' The Leal - it's a beautiful tune, but don't play it fast otherwise it becomes "Scots Wha Hae." I think there is a version by Silly Wizzard on youtube.


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Subject: RE: Trad British tunes for memorial/burial?
From: GUEST,Marion
Date: 30 Mar 16 - 10:21 PM

Thanks for your suggestions, everybody.

For what it's worth, the deaths in question happened between 1895 and 1925, and most of the children were English.

Having said that, I'm not so much concerned about national/chronological accuracy. I'm more concerned with choosing a piece that people in general (i.e., not just folk music lovers) would recognize as expressing tribute to people who died in tragic circumstances. Maybe my thread title should have said standard tunes rather than traditional tunes.

For example, in a purely North American context, Amazing Grace would be the obvious choice. But I don't know if Amazing Grace has the same status as the go-to funeral song in the UK as it does here.

Thanks, Marion


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Subject: RE: Trad British tunes for memorial/burial?
From: GUEST,Dave
Date: 31 Mar 16 - 02:10 AM

Well my wife plays at funerals from time to time, and recently every one has used Cwm Rhondda. One has had The Day thou Gavest, one has had Calon Lan (which can be used for several hymns, including What a Friend we have in Jesus), one Abide with Me, one The Lord's my Shepherd, one Thine be the Glory (tune by Handel), one I think Be Thou my Vision (whose tune is Irish). One had I watch the Sunrise, which is fairly modern. Here is a UK based site which gives a fuller list.

However most funerals, and all of those my wife has played at, have been for elderly people. Whenever I have been at memorial services for children (fortunately rare), they tend to chose modern hymns, e.g. Graham Kendrick ones.


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Subject: RE: Trad British tunes for memorial/burial?
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 31 Mar 16 - 03:33 AM

Amazing Grace has become popular since it was a popular single and since most people no longer learn trad. hymns when at school.
It was never known as particularly a children's hymn.

Do consider the traditional children's hymns I mentioned.


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Subject: RE: Trad British tunes for memorial/burial?
From: GUEST,Dave
Date: 31 Mar 16 - 03:46 AM

There are two, almost equally popular, tunes for All Things Bright and Beautiful, Shaw's Royal Oak, and Monk's tune written especially for this hymn.


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Subject: RE: Trad British tunes for memorial/burial?
From: Jack Campin
Date: 31 Mar 16 - 06:46 AM

For that period I'd guess "All Things Bright and Beautiful".

Got a link to what happened? I'd never heard of anything like that.


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