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Origin: When Spring Comes In / Spring Glee

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ADMIRAL BENBOW (2)
BIRDS IN THE SPRING
BOLD GENERAL WOLFE (3)
CHARMING MOLLY
COME ALL YOU BOLD BRITONS
COME WRITE ME DOWN
CUPID'S GARDEN
DAME DURDEN
DRAWING NEARER TO THE MERRY MONTH OF MAY
DRIVE SORROWS AWAY
FOX WENT OUT (Den-O)
GOOD ALE
HARD TIMES OF OLD ENGLAND
HONEST LABOURER
INNOCENT HARE
LARK IN THE MORNING
MONTH OF MAY
OH MY LOVE IS GONE (Sussex)
OLD ADAM
OLD THRESHING SONG
PRETTY BABES IN THE WOOD
ROSE IN JUNE (2)
SHEEP-SHEARING SONG
SHEPHERD OF THE DOWNS
SPENCER THE ROVER
SPRING GLEE
STORMY WINDS
SWEET NANCY
THE BRISK AND LIVELY LAD
THE FORSAKEN MERMAID
THE MOLECATCHER
THE OLD SONGS
THE SEASONS ROUND
THRESHING SONG
TWANKY DILLO
TWO YOUNG BRETHREN
WARLIKE SEAMEN
WHEN JONES'S ALE WAS NEW (3)
WOP-SHE-AD-IT
YOU GENTLEMEN OF HIGH REKNOWN


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GUEST,Jon Dudley 23 Apr 22 - 04:06 AM
leeneia 21 Apr 22 - 12:53 PM
Joe Offer 20 Apr 22 - 02:05 AM
leeneia 19 Apr 22 - 02:08 PM
leeneia 19 Apr 22 - 12:21 PM
Long Firm Freddie 19 Apr 22 - 09:43 AM
Steve Gardham 19 Apr 22 - 09:18 AM
G-Force 19 Apr 22 - 04:58 AM
Reinhard 18 Apr 22 - 06:42 PM
Michael 18 Apr 22 - 04:55 PM
Joe Offer 18 Apr 22 - 03:58 PM
Steve Gardham 05 Apr 21 - 04:58 PM
GUEST,# 05 Apr 21 - 04:18 PM
Joe Offer 05 Apr 21 - 04:15 PM
Bruce O. 14 Jan 00 - 12:37 PM
Andy Tarr 12 Jan 00 - 10:31 AM
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Subject: RE: Origin: When Spring Comes In / Spring Glee
From: GUEST,Jon Dudley
Date: 23 Apr 22 - 04:06 AM

“It's still a nice song, but it's not a folk song. It's an art song. Written out, it's about 80 measures.”

Isn’t it? I’m sure Jim Copper didn’t realise that…


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Subject: RE: Origin: When Spring Comes In / Spring Glee
From: leeneia
Date: 21 Apr 22 - 12:53 PM

I've copied the music which was on the abc site and changed it a little to match what the Copper Family sings. It's an unusual song; the first verse is eight measures long, the second is twelve, and the third is twenty. Although it's in 6/8, it has occasional measures with only 3 eighth-notes in them.

We get used to the distinctive music of the refrain (the primrose blooms), but then that music is used in the verse part about the milkmaid. Finally, the last refrain is missing.

It's still a nice song, but it's not a folk song. It's an art song. Written out, it's about 80 measures.


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Subject: ADD Version: When Springtime Comes
From: Joe Offer
Date: 20 Apr 22 - 02:05 AM

WHEN SPRINGTIME COMES (When Spring Comes In)

1. When Springtime comes the birds do sing
The lambs do play and the bells do ring
The primrose blows
And the cowslips too
The voilets in their sweet retire
The roses shinin' through the bri'r
And the daffydils which we admi-er
Soon dies and fades away

2. On mountains 'igh an' meadows green
Young men and maidens may be seen
Through woods an' groves
They take their way
They walk about and sport and say
The little lambs do round us play
And t'ards 'ome we bend our way
When the evenin' star appears

3. Our dairymaid to milkin' goes
With 'er bloomin' cheeks as red 's a rose
She milks she sings
Makes the valleys ring
The small birds on their branches there
Are listening to this maiden fair
For she is 'er master's trust and care
She is the ploughboys joy

Roud Number 439

From the Plunkett Collection
Collected by Melvin Plunkett between 1957 and 1960 in Sussex


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Subject: RE: Origin: When Spring Comes In (from Copper Family)
From: leeneia
Date: 19 Apr 22 - 02:08 PM

Never mind about the MIDI. "Spring Glee" is available on the abcnotation.com site. It's in 6/8 time, so no wonder my attempt to transcribe it in 4/4 hit the rocks.

I'm changing "the violets in their sweet retire" to "attire."


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Subject: RE: Origin: When Spring Comes In (from Copper Family)
From: leeneia
Date: 19 Apr 22 - 12:21 PM

I can't get that MIDI thing in the DT to play or be saved. Is it usable any more? It's a charming song.


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Subject: RE: Origin: When Spring Comes In (from Copper Family)
From: Long Firm Freddie
Date: 19 Apr 22 - 09:43 AM

The last line of the first verse of The Banks of the Sweet Primroses similarly has: "There I beheld a most lovelie fair." The spelling of lovelie is deliberate to indicate how the word is sung.

LFF


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Subject: RE: Origin: When Spring Comes In (from Copper Family)
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 19 Apr 22 - 09:18 AM

In another version collected by Hammond which looks as though it might be closer to the original the line runs: 'The birds on every spray draw near to listen to this charming dear.'


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Subject: RE: Origin: When Spring Comes In (from Copper Family)
From: G-Force
Date: 19 Apr 22 - 04:58 AM

Joe, I think 'lovely' is a noun (short for lovely girl) and 'fair' is the adjective.


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Subject: RE: Origin: When Spring Comes In (from Copper Family)
From: Reinhard
Date: 18 Apr 22 - 06:42 PM

It's in the Digital Tradition as Spring Glee.

And the Copper Family Song Book has the second-last line as "lovely fair".


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Subject: RE: Origin: When Spring Comes In (from Copper Family)
From: Michael
Date: 18 Apr 22 - 04:55 PM

I've always assumed it was short for "lovely fair maid".

Mike


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Subject: ADD Ver: When Spring Comes In (from Copper Family)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 18 Apr 22 - 03:58 PM

Lyrics from https://mainlynorfolk.info/copperfamily/songs/whenspringcomesin.html

WHEN SPRING COMES IN (from Copper Family)

When Spring comes in the birds do sing,
The lambs do skip and the bells do ring
While we enjoy their glorious charm so noble and so gay.

CHORUS (repeated after each verse):
The primrose blooms and the cowslip too,
The violets in their sweet retire, the roses shining through the briar,
And the daffadown-dillies which we admire will die and fade away.

Young men and maidens will be seen
On mountains high and meadows green,
They will talk of love and sport and play
While these young lambs do skip away.
At night they homeward wend their way
When evening stars appear.

The dairymaid to milking goes, her blooming cheeks as red as a rose,
She carries her pail all on her arm so cheerful and so gay,
She milks, she sings, and the valleys ring.
The small birds on the branches there sit listening to this lovely fair.
She is her master's trust and care, she is the ploughman's joy.
SPRING GLEE (DT Lyrics)(differences in italics)

When Spring comes on, the birds do sing,
The lambs do skip and the bells do ring,
While we enjoy their glorious charm,
So noble and so gay.

The primrose blooms and the cowslip, too.
The violets in their sweet retire,
The roses shining through the briar,
And the daffa-down dillys which we admire
Will die and fade away.

Young men end maidens will be seen
On mountains high and meadows green;
They will talk of love and sport and play
While these young lambs do skip away.
At night, they'll homeward wand their way
When evening stars appear.

The dairymaid to milking goes,
Her blooming cheeks as red as a rose.
She carries her pail all on her arm,
So cheerful and so gay.
She milks, she sings,
And the valleys ring.

The small birds on the branches there
Sit listening to this lovely fair;
She is her master's trust and care,
She is the ploughman's joy.



@seasonal
recorded by the Copper Family
filename[ SPRGLEE
JY



The lyrics at Mainly Norfolk are exactly the same as those on pp. 238-239 of Bob Copper's A Song for Every Season (1975 Paladin Edition). The only problem with the Norfolk transcription is a misplaced comma in the "dairymaid" line.

second-last line - shouldn't that be "lovely fare"?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3kh_OtMbO-I



Ballad Index entry:

When Spring Comes In

DESCRIPTION: "When spring comes in the birds will sing, The lambs will play and bells will ring." "Young men and maidens" court on mountains and in meadows; "the dairymaid ... can milk and she can sing ... her master's trust and care And all a ploughman's joy."
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1923 (Williams-FolkSongsOfTheUpperThames)
KEYWORDS: courting farming nonballad bird sheep
FOUND IN: Britain(England(South))
REFERENCES (2 citations):
Williams-FolkSongsOfTheUpperThames, p. 222, "When Spring Comes In" (1 text) (also Williams-Wiltshire-WSRO Wt 475)
Copper-ASongForEverySeason, pp. 238-239, "When Spring Comes In" (1 text, 1 tune)

Roud #439
File: WT222

Go to the Ballad Search form
Go to the Ballad Index Song List

Go to the Ballad Index Instructions
Go to the Ballad Index Bibliography or Discography

The Ballad Index Copyright 2022 by Robert B. Waltz and David G. Engle.


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Subject: RE: Origin: When Spring Comes In (from Copper Family)
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 05 Apr 21 - 04:58 PM

It is in places referred to as 'Spring Glee' which tells of its origins, like some other songs in the Copper family repertoire (Dame Durden) as a glee. Glee clubs, still going, were very popular in the late 18th century and through the 19th. They were generally pretty pastoral pieces sung in parts from music. We've discussed this in other threads. The Copper family style of harmony is at least partly based on the idea of glee singing.


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Subject: RE: Origin: When Spring Comes In (from Copper Family)
From: GUEST,#
Date: 05 Apr 21 - 04:18 PM

https://mainlynorfolk.info/copperfamily/songs/whenspringcomesin.html

Lyrics readily available at Reinhard's site.


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Subject: RE: Origin: When Spring Comes In (from Copper Family)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 05 Apr 21 - 04:15 PM

Needs lyrics


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Subject: RE: Help: Origin of When Spring Comes In
From: Bruce O.
Date: 14 Jan 00 - 12:37 PM

While searching for something else, I just ran into this in Alfred Williams, 'Folk Songs of the Upper Thames', p. 222.


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Subject: Lyr Add: WHEN SPRING COMES IN (Copper Family)
From: Andy Tarr
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 10:31 AM

Does anyone know anything about where the Copper Family song "When Spring Comes In" comes from? It's in their songbook, but they don't say much about it. Thanks for any help!

When spring comes in, the birds do sing,
The lambs do skip and the bells do ring,
While we enjoy their glorious charm,
So cheerful and so gay.

The primrose blooms and the cowslip, too.
The violets in their sweet retire,
The roses shining through the briar,
And the daffa-down-dillys which we admire
Will die and fade away.

etc.


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