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Lyr Add: The Green Lady

In Mudcat MIDIs:
The Green Lady


Malcolm Douglas 05 Jan 00 - 11:41 PM
Alan of Australia 06 Jan 00 - 10:07 AM
MMario 06 Jan 00 - 10:42 AM
Malcolm Douglas 06 Jan 00 - 05:08 PM
Bruce O. 06 Jan 00 - 09:38 PM
Malcolm Douglas 06 Jan 00 - 10:58 PM
Bill D 06 Jan 00 - 11:28 PM
Bruce O. 07 Jan 00 - 12:21 AM
sophocleese 28 Oct 00 - 11:21 PM
Malcolm Douglas 29 Oct 00 - 12:24 AM
Malcolm Douglas 29 Oct 00 - 12:31 AM
Malcolm Douglas 29 Oct 00 - 12:53 AM
sophocleese 03 Nov 00 - 11:11 PM
Malcolm Douglas 04 Nov 00 - 08:34 AM
GUEST,MCP 18 Jan 02 - 05:47 AM
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Subject: Lyr Add: THE GREEN LADY (trad Somerset)
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 05 Jan 00 - 11:41 PM

This unusual song comes from the folklorist Ruth L. Tongue's autobiographical book, The Chime Child, or, Somerset Singers (Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1968), and was brought to my attention some years ago by Hugh Waller of Sheffield, who is the only person I have ever heard sing it. Ms. Tongue apparently learned it from "Isaiah Sully" (an alias), 1825-1923, "Singer, Mummer, Morrisman" and reputed possessor of dark powers, who lived in Taunton Deane, West Somerset.

THE GREEN LADY

Now all you young fellows take heed what I tell.
A-down in the wood a Green Lady do dwell.
Her hair it is green and all green is her gown,
And she calleth to all, "Come here! Draw near!"
But she means them no good for she drinks their hearts' blood;
They never do wed, for they takes to their bed,
And they dies -they all dies at the end of the year.
All under the tree
There sits a Green Lady.

Now all you young fellows take heed what I tell.
A-down in the wood a Green Lady do dwell.
And a bush lad drew nigh with a roving eye
And she called to him, "Draw near! Come here!"
But his sweetheart she ran and caught hold of her man
And she took him away and to him she did say
"You shan't die. You shan't die at the end of the year."
All under the tree
There sits a Green Lady.

Now all you young fellows take heed what I tell.
A-down in the wood a Green Lady do dwell.
To the wood then she goes in his breeches and hose
And the Green Lady called, ""Draw near! Come here!"
But a little axe had she, hid down by her knee,
And she chopped down the tree and the Green Lady
And they died -yes they died- at the end of the year.
All under the tree
There sits a Green Lady.
^^
Ms. Tongue remarks, "Verses 2 and 3 are compiled from lines and fragments of the much longer ballad "Isaiah" sang in tantalizing occasional phrases during the period 1904 to about 1919."

She goes on to say: "A chilling but fairly complete picture of a dangerous nature spirit, of the vampire type. Any wood called Green Ladies was sedulously avoided -not only for the fairy claim upon it but in case it harboured such a tree spirit. She is true sister to the East Anglian ghost quoted to me in 1956, by a schoolgirl:

So they looked thro' the keyhole
To see what they could see
And there they saw the Green Lady
Dancing with the Devil in a Bowl of Blood!

There are only two folk tales about her in Folk Lore's early volumes, but in each the hint of a tree spirit is present."

I wouldn't care to comment on the authenticity or otherwise of this song, but it certainly is an impressive piece. The melody is equally unusual, and a midi goes to the midi site.

Malcolm


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Green Lady
From: Alan of Australia
Date: 06 Jan 00 - 10:07 AM

G'day,
Thanks Malcolm. I've had a recording of this for years, recorded by Hedgehog Pie. The MIDI can be found at the Mudcat MIDI site.

Cheers,
Alan


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Green Lady
From: MMario
Date: 06 Jan 00 - 10:42 AM

My content filter has decided AGAIN to block the midi site. So I'm requesting another review......


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Green Lady
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 06 Jan 00 - 05:08 PM

Alan

Good Heavens! Hedgehog Pie! I can still picture the album sleeve, though I never owned a copy; Green Lady on Rubber Records. I have no memory at all of what was on it.

Malcolm


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Subject: Tune Add: THE GREEN LADY
From: Bruce O.
Date: 06 Jan 00 - 09:38 PM

I wouldn't bet 2 cents that there's anything in 'The Chime Child' that's authentic. Faith Sharp notes in the forward that she noted the tunes from a tape made by Ruth Tongue and a friend, i.e., not from the presumed original singers. If I remember correctly, Anne Briggs is another English woman 'folklorist' that only collected things that nobody else had ever seen, heard, or ever heard tell of. Their works are highly suspect.

X:1
T:The Green Lady
S:The Chime Child
Q:1/4=120
L:1/4
M:3/4
K:Am
F|D3/2 D/ C|E/C3/2c|BAE|Aze|B3/2e/d|\
ccd|e/d/cB|A2d|e3/2d/ c/B/|(c/B/)AG|\
A3/2G/E|E2G/A/|e3/2d/c|A2G|A2B|.A2B/A/|\
GAA|A2d/c/|BAG|A2A|e3/2d/G|\
Ad/d/|eBA/G/|(E.A)G/A/|(e3/2d/)c|.AGA|\
Q:1/4=120
L:1/4
M:4/4
(BA2)B/B/|(GE2)d/d/|e/d/.B2A/B/|B2AE|\
Q:1/1=120
L:1/4
M:3/4
.A2A|edB|A2c|e2A|(cB)G|A3||]


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Green Lady
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 06 Jan 00 - 10:58 PM

That's rather what I suspect myself; it is nevertheless an interesting piece whatever its origins.

Malcolm


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Green Lady
From: Bill D
Date: 06 Jan 00 - 11:28 PM

I like the "Chime Child", even though I also wonder about it...I had a friend who learned and recorded 20 or more of the songs in it for me...If it IS mostly fake, it is a good job. If I could create like that, I wouldn't care if anyone knew it wasn't 'trad'.....


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Green Lady
From: Bruce O.
Date: 07 Jan 00 - 12:21 AM

If you go back to the Quaker's Wife thread of Nov. 1998, you'll see that I contributed one of Ruth Tongue's songs. I don't know how authentic if is either, but it does touch a bit the two other very short fragments that have survived [The 3rd isn't published yet. It will be in Vol. VIII of 'The Greig-Duncan Folk Song Collection', but I have a copy and there's not much of a song there.]


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Green Lady
From: sophocleese
Date: 28 Oct 00 - 11:21 PM

Okay, given the information in this thread I blithely attempted to learn this song. It would appear however that after awhile either some phrase or other is repeated, some lines have words with many notes to them or else the words simply run out before the tune ends. Can anybody tell me how it works when it is sung? Personally at the moment I'm favouring a persistent repeat of the phrase which has the word "die" in it, but I may be unduly influenced by the halloween atmosphere.

Thanks.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Green Lady
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 29 Oct 00 - 12:24 AM

Well, here is a direct link to the midi file if that's any use:  Green Lady

If a .gif of the notation would help, PM me and I'll send you a copy.

Malcolm

LinkFix by J Clone


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Green Lady
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 29 Oct 00 - 12:31 AM

Well, it's not my night for technical stuff, evidently.  Green Lady

Malcolm


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Green Lady
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 29 Oct 00 - 12:53 AM

Thankyou, J. Clone!  There is a problem with the correlation between text and music which I failed to notice when I originally posted this.  The text Ms. Tongue gives in the body of her book is not quite the same as that which she gives with the music in the appendix; in the latter there is an extra line!  Since last January I have discovered how to embed lyrics into midis, and so will be unlikely to miss something like that again.  Thankyou, Sophocleese, for pointing out my mistake.  If you read the first verse as follows (text in bold is the missing line) it should fit:

Now all you young fellows take heed what I tell.
A-down in the wood a Green Lady do dwell.
Her hair it is green and all green is her gown,
And she calleth to all, "Come here! Draw near!"
But she means them no good, for she drinks their hearts' blood;
They never do wed, for they takes to their bed,
For 'tis Death, cold Death do draw near
And they dies -they all dies at the end of the year.
All under the tree
There sits a Green Lady.


Malcolm


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Green Lady
From: sophocleese
Date: 03 Nov 00 - 11:11 PM

Sorry Malcolm I forgot to post earlier and say thank you for following this up and sending in that extra line. It really does help. Thanks a lot.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Green Lady
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 04 Nov 00 - 08:34 AM

Only too glad.  Thank you for spotting the problem!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Green Lady
From: GUEST,MCP
Date: 18 Jan 02 - 05:47 AM

I came across this thread via the Lady Jean Drummond one. I agree that all the material in The Chime Child is suspect (though I have been known to sing Three Danish Galleys at times) - it just doesn't look or sound like traditional song (chime child though I am myself by RT's definition).

A lady who died a few years ago used to come to a song session I ran at Sidmouth and she had known Ruth Tongue in her younger days. She told me that she and Ruth Tongue had been walking (in Dorset I think) one morning and at some sight RT said "That reminds me of a line from a song" (The one about the willow?). By evening she had "recovered" the entire song and tune. This did nothing to allay my suspicions.

Mick


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