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Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley

DigiTrad:
FORTY BELOW
RED RIVER VALLEY
RED RIVER VALLEY (2)
THEY CALL ME A MACV ADVISOR


Related threads:
Lyr Req: Spanish lyrics to 'Red River Valley'? (30)
(origins) Origins: Red River Valley, Gaelic? (104)
(origins) Lyr Req: In the Bright Mohawk Valley (33)
(origins) Origin: Red River Valley (37)
Lyr Req: Sherman Valley (Bascom L. Lunsford) (6)


GUEST,Frankie 06 Mar 00 - 11:59 PM
Metchosin 07 Mar 00 - 12:55 AM
Stewie 07 Mar 00 - 01:27 AM
Metchosin 07 Mar 00 - 01:52 AM
Lin in Kansas 07 Mar 00 - 02:09 AM
GUEST,Sandy Paton 07 Mar 00 - 03:05 AM
Stewie 07 Mar 00 - 04:23 AM
Metchosin 07 Mar 00 - 05:12 AM
dick greenhaus 07 Mar 00 - 11:28 AM
richardw 07 Mar 00 - 11:44 AM
Metchosin 07 Mar 00 - 01:38 PM
GUEST,Frankie 08 Mar 00 - 06:32 PM
Lin in Kansas 08 Mar 00 - 09:00 PM
raredance 08 Mar 00 - 09:45 PM
Jon Bartlett 09 Jan 02 - 12:40 AM
Liz the Squeak 09 Jan 02 - 06:57 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 08 Feb 04 - 10:45 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 08 Feb 04 - 11:37 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 09 Feb 04 - 01:12 PM
Joybell 09 Feb 04 - 06:04 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 09 Feb 04 - 06:24 PM
GUEST,Vrdpkr 10 Feb 04 - 01:59 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 10 Feb 04 - 08:02 PM
GUEST 25 May 06 - 01:07 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 25 May 06 - 04:38 PM
JedMarum 26 May 06 - 02:09 PM
GUEST,Richard-Albania 03 Mar 07 - 09:00 AM
open mike 07 Feb 08 - 04:19 AM
open mike 07 Feb 08 - 04:21 AM
Melissa 07 Feb 08 - 03:43 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 07 Feb 08 - 05:41 PM
GUEST 27 Jul 08 - 05:44 AM
Jim Dixon 28 Jul 08 - 08:36 AM
Haruo 13 Jul 09 - 05:30 AM
Genie 23 Aug 09 - 03:45 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 23 Aug 09 - 01:18 PM
Genie 23 Aug 09 - 05:42 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 23 Aug 09 - 05:50 PM
misbeahave 23 Aug 09 - 11:56 PM
GUEST,Larry Saidman 30 Apr 10 - 01:46 AM
Artful Codger 02 May 10 - 12:43 AM
dick greenhaus 02 May 10 - 11:20 AM
Artful Codger 02 May 10 - 08:03 PM
Artful Codger 02 May 10 - 10:42 PM
Taconicus 08 Jul 10 - 09:11 PM
Taconicus 05 Dec 11 - 07:54 PM
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Subject: Alternate Red River Valley
From: GUEST,Frankie
Date: 06 Mar 00 - 11:59 PM

Someone,in another thread, mentioned a version of RRV that contained verses that involved a Native American girl who was perhaps given VD or TB by some cowboy who she's pining for. Anyone got a clue? Thanks, Frankie


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Metchosin
Date: 07 Mar 00 - 12:55 AM

Frankie, I think Liz was correct, regarding alternate lyrics, as I seem to recall Edith Fowke collecting it from Canada and the song did not refer to a cowboy

There was an incredible play also on the CBC Radio in Canada,within the past year, that was also based on a first nations woman's recollection of the lyrics. I'll try to see what I can dig up, but unfortunately, I can't find my Folksongs of Canada book by Edith Fowke. (probably thing blindness)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Stewie
Date: 07 Mar 00 - 01:27 AM

I've got the Penguin edition of Fowke in front of me. RRV is number 52 and collected from Mrs A.Fraser. There's no mention of cowboys or VD - only of love for 'a boy who came west' by 'a dark maiden'. I can post it at some stage if you like. James Talley did a great version RRV on one of his early Capitol albums.

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Metchosin
Date: 07 Mar 00 - 01:52 AM

Thanks Stewie, I still can't find my hard cover copy of Edith Fowke, but I was pretty certain there was no mention of cowboys.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Lin in Kansas
Date: 07 Mar 00 - 02:09 AM

The only one I've ever heard is the cowboy version--Stewie, if you would post it, I for one would appreciate it!

Thanks

Lin


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: GUEST,Sandy Paton
Date: 07 Mar 00 - 03:05 AM

Edith wrote an article about RRV, but, dammit, I can't remember where I saw it. She was convinced by the dates and other evidence surrounding her Canadian version (which refers to the Red River of the North) that it predated the cowboy version, and was even earlier than the "Bright Mohawk Valley" version that I like to sing. I'm willing to take her word for it, too, as she was one heck of a researcher, as well as a fine collector.

Sandy (who has lost his cookie and doesn't know how to find it again)


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE RED RIVER VALLEY
From: Stewie
Date: 07 Mar 00 - 04:23 AM

Lin, here is Fowke #52 in Penguin edition: ^^
THE RED RIVER VALLEY

From this valley they say you are going
I shall miss your bright eyes and sweet smile
For alas you take with you the sunshine
That has brightened my pathway a while

Chorus:
Come and sit by my side if you love me
Do not hasten to bid me adieu
But remember the Red River Valley
And the girl who has loved you so true

For this long, long time I have waited
For the words that you never would say
Now my last hope has vanished
When they tell me that you're going away

Oh there never could be such a longing
In the heart of a white maiden's breast
As there is in the heart that is breaking
With love for the boy who came west

When you go to your home by the ocean
May you never forget the sweet hours
That we spent in the Red River Valley
Or the vows we exchanged 'mid the bowers

Will you think of the valley you're leaving
Oh how lonely and dreary 'twill be
Will you think of the fond heart you're breaking
And be true to your promise to me

The dark maiden's prayer for her lover
To the spirit that rules o'er the world
His pathway with sunshine may cover
Leave his grief to the Red River girl

Despite its literary pretensions, with its lovely tune, it can raise the hairs on the back of my neck when I hear a sensitive presentation. I could hear Talley in my head as I typed even though he did not sing anywhere near as many verses as that.

Cheers, Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Metchosin
Date: 07 Mar 00 - 05:12 AM

It always seemed more logical to me, that a Metis would "bid me adieu" rather than a cowboy.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 07 Mar 00 - 11:28 AM

In one of the versions in which the male is leaving, there's the immortal (and, to me, unsingable) line:

Can I leave her behind, unprotected...


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: richardw
Date: 07 Mar 00 - 11:44 AM

Sandy;

You're right , I have the same article she wrote about RRV. Edith was a great lady and a great collector. It also makes sense that it was the RR of the north which runs north from Minn.through Winnipeg (then Fort Garry) to lake Winnipeg. This was a large Metis community.

I'll try and find Edith's article.

Richard Wright


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Metchosin
Date: 07 Mar 00 - 01:38 PM

My excuse Stewie was that I was sleepwalking when I submitted my post, it should be .......would say "bid me adieu".

Dick I don't think he would have worried about leaving her "behind unprotected", considering the line "Leave his grief to the Red River girl" probably did refer to VD and TB.

It occurred to me that, around the time some of these folk songs were being collected from the oral tradition and written down, the collectors were of the kind that wouldn't say sh*t if they had a mouth full of it. I don't put Edith Fowke in that category though, as this probably occurred well before she started collecting.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: GUEST,Frankie
Date: 08 Mar 00 - 06:32 PM

Thanks a lot Stewie and all others. This could be the version Liz was refering to. Frankie


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Lin in Kansas
Date: 08 Mar 00 - 09:00 PM

Thanks Stewie--

The first two verses were the same as the version I learned as a youngster, but the rest was new to me.

And Metchosin, maybe I'm just naive, but the last verse reads to me as if she just wanted him to be happy, even though she would grieve for him! Sheesh...secret code, I guess (or maybe I'm just too literal-minded, eh? )

Interesting stuff...

Lin


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: raredance
Date: 08 Mar 00 - 09:45 PM

I have to take issue with RW. The "better" description of the Red River is that it runs north from North Dakota to Winnipeg (Manitoba)and eventually into Lake Winnipeg. The water leaves the north end of Lake Winnipeg via the Nelson River that flows into Hudson Bay. While on the RRV subject searching the DT for the tune "redrival" comes up with half a dozen sets of lyrics that use the tune. There is a Vietnam era Air Force song about flying over the Red River Valley in North Vietnam. There are two more or less duplicate versions of a song from the Spanish Civil War called "Jarama" &"Jarama Valley" (note to DT editors). One has 5 stanzas, the other has those 5 plus 2 more.

Also of interest is the text in the DT called "forty below". The DT lists it by Chris Dafoe sometime in the 1950's. The same lyrics can be found in "Singing Our History, Canada's Story in Song" by Edith Fowke and Alan Mills (1984). Fowke and Mills say they have no definite information about the lyric's origin, but add that Canada established a Wheat Board in 1919 that lasted a year and set up another one in 1935. I included this version on a homemade cassette "The Fargo Winter Tape" about 13 years ago. The question I have is does Chris Dafoe deserve legitimate credit and Fowke missed it, or is the Chris Dafoe credit erroneous?

There's a blizzard outside right now.

rich r


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Jon Bartlett
Date: 09 Jan 02 - 12:40 AM

Maybe I can help with the Defoe connection. My partner Rika Ruebsaat collected "Forty Below" at a fairly drunken party in Winnipeg in 1975. She and I were ignorant of the song's provenance and asked around, through our newsletter and the two publications we edited "Come All Ye" (1972-78) and "Canada Folk Bulletin" (1978-1980), and whenever we performed the song. We never heard from anyone. Edith Fowke added the song to the second edition of "Canada's Story in Song" (now called "Singing Our History" (1984), the subtitle of the first edition, 1954)and acknowledged Rika and "Canada Folk Bulletin" as source (p. 240). We used the song in one of our radio shows in the series "Songs and Stories of Canada", aired by the CBC as a schools broadcast in western Canada and included it in the Guide we prepared for the shows in kit form. Holt, Rinehart wanted to use the song in their textbook "Musiccanada 5" and we gave permission. The next we heard was a few years later (in 1988) from Chris Dafoe's lawyers. He had apparently made the song in 1959 and published it in his column in the Winnipeg Free Press. Another song tracked down! I sent the song in to the DT with the updated note on its now discovered author. He himself has written a fine piece titled "Just Another Folk Song" describing the songs travels through the world, via (of all people) Alex Campbell.

Bye the bye, the article of Edith's in which she claims a Canadian/Metis origin of the original version is to be found in "The Red River Valley Re-examined", Western Folklore 23 (1964), 247-256; reprinted in Alberta Historical review, 13 (1965), 20-25.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 09 Jan 02 - 06:57 PM

ER... it's very similar, but one line that doesn't appear, that I remember very clearly, in a verse that mentions the 'lay your head on the white maiden's breast (thanks for jogging that line out of the depths), is 'remember, the red maiden loved you the best', and the chorus started 'then linger a while, e're you leave me'.

She's definately red, not dark, although it may have been bowdlerised to make it more palatable for those who could cope with African American but not Native American affairs.

LTS


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Subject: Lyr Add: RED RIVER VALLEY
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 08 Feb 04 - 10:45 PM

Lyr. Add: RED RIVER VALLEY 3 (western)
^^
From this valley they say you are going,
I shall miss your sweet face and bright smile.
For they say you are taking the sunshine
That has brightened my path for awhile.

I've been thinking a long time, my darling,
Of those sweet words you never would say,
But the last of my fond hopes have vanished
For they say you are going away.

Chorus:
Then come sit here awhile ere you leave us,
Do not hasten to bid us adieu,
But remember the Red River Valley
And the cowboy who loves you so true.

I have promised you darling, that never
Would words from my lips cause you pain;
And my life will be yours forever,
If you only will love me again.

Must the past with its joys all be blighted
By a future of sorrow and pain?
Must the vows that were spoken be slighted?
Don't you think you could love me again?

There never could be such a longing
In the heart of a poor cowboy's breast,
As dwells in this heart you are breaking,
As I wait in my home in the West.

Do you think of this valley you are leaving,
Oh, how lonely and sad it will be!
Do you think of the kind hearts you're grieving
And the pain you are causing to me?

Chorus repeat

I have used the lyrics here that we sang when growing up in the West. There was no mention of a dark maiden or a home over the ocean. Those verses were unknown to us. It was never sung from a girl's viewpoint.

Of course, we had in mind the Red River of the West, not the one up in Canada, which we knew little or nothing about.

These lyrics are close to those in Fife and Fife, "Cowboy and Western Songs," and in Lomax and Lomax, "Cowboy Songs and Other Frontier Ballads."


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Subject: Lyr Add: RED RIVER VALLEY (from Jack H Lee)
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 08 Feb 04 - 11:37 PM

Lyr. Add: THE RED RIVER VALLEY 4
Powder River Jack H. Lee
^^
From the Valley they say you are going;
I will miss your sweet face and bright smile,
But at last you are seeking the sunshine
That will brighten your pathway awhile.

I've been thinking a long time, my darling,
Of the sweet words you never would say,
But at last all my fond hopes have vanished,
For they say you are going away.

Chorus
Come and sit by my side if you love me,
Do not hasten to bid me adieu,
But remember the Red River Valley
And the cowboy who loved you so true.

Do you think of this valley you are leaving?
Oh how lonely and how dreary it wil be!
Do you think of the fond heart you are breaking
And the pain you are causing to me?

I have promised you, darling, that never
Would a word from my lips cause you pain;
I have promised to be yours forever
If you will only love me again.

Chorus
Come and tarry awhile, do not leave me,
Do not hasten to bid me adieu,
But remember the Red River Valley
And the cowboy who loved you so true.

Oh, there never should be such a longing,
Such an anguish and pain in the breast,
As dwells in the heart of a cowboy
Where I wait in my home in the West.

So bury me out on the prairie,
Where the roses and wildflowers grow;
Lay me to sleep by the hillside,
For I can't live without you, I know.

Chorus
Oh, consider awhile, do not leave me,
Do not hasten to bid me adieu,
But remember the Red River Valley
And the cowboy who loved you so true.

"Cowboy Songs," 1938, Powder River Jack H. Lee, pp. 8-9, with sheet music, published by The McKee Printing Co., Butte, Montana.

"The original version of the Red River valley pertains to a love affair between a cowboy and a school teacher who hailed from the east and was returning to her home. He knew that if she left him that he had no doubt would never see her again, and so as he sings he is pleading with her to tarry awhile and hoping to influence her at the same time regarding her departure. Some of the later versions have lost the real meaning of this song, such as the "Red girl who loved you so true, etc.," and in all events there were six verses in the written copy of the original as I first heard it, and the first line of each chorus at the end of the second verse differed from the preceding choruses. The Red River Valley in the original song refers to South Dakota, where I first heard Frank Chamberlin sing it at a cow camp up on the Moreau River. Carl Sprague was given credit for the music, and of all sentimental songs of the cowboys, there are none more beautifully expressed and withmore real deep feeling than the Red River Valley."

"Many years have passed since I first met pretty Kitty Lee, and as we'd race our broncs along the stretches of Powder River, this is the song that we loved and would sing while riding in the moonlight. And then I went away and headed south to trail the beef herds, and ten years passed before we met again. On a glorious golden day in New Mexico, as I cantered up to the chuck wagon of the Circle Diamond outfit, I spied the form of a lithe girl on a fiery pinto, and again I met Kitty Lee, who, with her brother, was riding overland to Texas, and with their pack outfit came in to join us for chuck. And now we ride the trails together and "side by side we hope to travel the great divide," and the Red River Valley will always mean to me the starlight nights of years gone by, when the Wyoming moon shone down and the Big Horn Ranges cast their long shadows where the coyotes lurked and howled and where we parted for the fleeting years."
Quoted from Lee's introduction to "Th Red River Valley" in "Cowboy Songs."
A much purtier story than that Canadian one.

Jack and Kitty Lee, after he left cowboyin,' of course married and composed and sang western songs for many years.


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Subject: Lyr Add: LOST RIVER DESERT (from Fife and Fife)
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 09 Feb 04 - 01:12 PM

Lyr. Add: LOST RIVER DESERT
^^
From this desert I know you are leaving,
I have read the sad news in your eyes,
There's no beauty for you in these prairies,
And you're blind to the blues of the skies.

I had many fond hopes of your coming,
I had built my dream castles on air,
But alas, that fair picture is fading,
The desert my heart must repair.

Let me point out to you the Great Dipper,
You may see it wherever you roam,
And some day you may see it and wonder,
As you picture me here in my home.

From this city you'll write me a letter,
Remember the lock of your hair,
Just address it to Lost River Desert,
To the Ranger who welcomes you there.

The coyotes will howl all around me,
While so sadly I strum my guitar,
While I pour out the love I must vanquish
Into the mirage of a star.

Some night you may see the Great Dipper,
And fancy I'm sitting with you,
In the shade of the silent desert,
The spot where you vowed to be true.

PNFQ 271, from Fife and Fife, "Cowboy and Western Songs," No. 56, "Red River Valley," with music, text C, p. 159. No author indicated.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Joybell
Date: 09 Feb 04 - 06:04 PM

So no news yet about the words for "In the Bright Mohawk Valley" My true-love says he saw them once in a song-book - something like a Readers Digest publication. Still hopeful, Joy


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 09 Feb 04 - 06:24 PM

Joybell, I would also like to see them.
The DeVincent collection, however lists it as an "arrangement by..." from Red River Valley. Your chicken and egg comment may be right! Which was first?

In several books, I have comments about Red River Valley being sung in the 1880s in the western US. Of course, these comments are anecdotal. So far, the comments about a Canadian origin, AND the prior existence of "Bright Mohawk Valley" are anecdotal as well.

It seems strange that no copy of Kerrigan's sheet music, and no information about Kerrigan, can be found.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: GUEST,Vrdpkr
Date: 10 Feb 04 - 01:59 PM

Jack Lee was known around here (Arizona) to be no kind of cowboy and to have made up a lot of stuff about his past. He claimed credit for "Sierry Petes" until he was braced about it by Gale Gardner, who wrote it.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 10 Feb 04 - 08:02 PM

Lee was still claiming credit for Gardner's song in when he wrote "Cowboy Songs" in 1938.
He heads the sheet music "Words and Music By Powder River Jack Lee on Victor Record 23527."
He did mess around a bit with Gail Gardner's words, with a new title "Tying a knot in the Devil's Tail" (see thread 13471 for "Sierry Petes").
Attribution to Gardner has not yet been made in the DT, nor have Gardner's lyrics been added. Music should be attributed to Simon.

Getting back to "Red River Valley," none of the suggestions of provenance nor claims to authorship have been verified.


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Subject: Lyr Add: RED RIVER VALLEY
From: GUEST
Date: 25 May 06 - 01:07 PM

Interesting discussion on this song. I never gave it a thought until I saw a guy in Shreveport last week swear that he had an older version then the cowboy song. The guy was a black cowboy singer named Eric something. He plays around these parts some.

His lyrics sound more modern to me and they surely relate to East Texas and North Louisiana (where there really is a Red River Valley). But I liked his lyrics so I wrote them down.

Has anyone else heard these lyrics?

^^
From this valley they say you are going
We will miss your bright eyes and sweet smile
For they say you are taking the sunshine
That has brightened our path for a while

Come and sit by my side if you love me
Do not hasten to bid me adieu
But remember the Red River Valley
And the cowboy who loved you so true

From the East Texas plains and the valley
Has the time come for you to depart
You return to your home on the Liffey
Taking with you this poor cowboy's heart

Come and sit by my side if you love me
Do not hasten to bid me adieu
But remember the Red River Valley
And the cowboy who loved you so true

Now through Marshal and all Grayson County
As the wind in the pines speaks your name
I remember my lost love in Dublin
And a song from this heart set aflame

Come and sit by my side if you love me
Do not hasten to bid me adieu
But remember the Red River Valley
And the cowboy who loved you so true


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 25 May 06 - 04:38 PM

Interesting! Thanks for posting this version.

Many, like me, believe the Red River of the song is the one which flows from New Mexico, at first a small trout stream, joining eventually Prairie Dog Town Fork, and on to form the Texas-Oklahoma boundary, and on to Louisiana. The river once formed the boundary between Spain and France and, after about 1821, became the route for many pioneers moving into Texas. The rich blacklands of northeast Texas supported cotton and other crops. The area was populous enough by 1836 to send delegates to the Convention. (Handbook of Texas, www.tsha.utexas.edu/handbook/online/articles/RR/rnr1.html)

Many others favor the Red River of the North.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: JedMarum
Date: 26 May 06 - 02:09 PM

Great old song no matter the version, no matter the origins!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: GUEST,Richard-Albania
Date: 03 Mar 07 - 09:00 AM

I'm very attached to the Red River Valley as a song but I heard it first on my Daddy's knee back of Lanark in the Ottawa valley Canada sung by light of coal oil lanterns at some farmers dance/social as they called them then. As I grew up I played it on my guitar but the lyrics were always slightly twisted depending where I was in Canada and the U.S. as we casually would have a figer pickin' jam with new friends.

Now that I've live in the Balkans for many years it amazes me how the tune has been adapted to different languages while the root message remains the same. As a child I always thought it was about the Red River valley in Manitoba. Shows what I knew as a 6 year old!

Richard Gibson-Shaw


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: open mike
Date: 07 Feb 08 - 04:19 AM

There are a couple of threads on this song..
I wonder which ocean the home is by?

I saw a Red River Valley in Canada,
but the song refers to one in Texas
as I recall...any others known to
'Catters?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: open mike
Date: 07 Feb 08 - 04:21 AM

and this same thread goes by a couple of different names..
curious about the French "Adieu" and the origin of that...


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Melissa
Date: 07 Feb 08 - 03:43 PM

I always wondered if this was possibly a Trader song before it shifted into being a Cowboy song.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 07 Feb 08 - 05:41 PM

'Adieu' is too common in English (and American) to be considered an indication of origin. Posted in Mudcat are popular songs, cowboy songs, etc., with the word 'adieu.' Look at the Levy Collection,
(Adieu, my native shore (Lord Byron), The Soldier's Adieu (Dibdin), Adieu, My Native land (American), a Civil War song by Hewett, Adieu Sweet Girl (American, about 1800), There is a tavern in the town, Flash Lad, etc. etc. etc.
A look through the Bodleian Collection yields many more- and these are just those with the word in the title.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: GUEST
Date: 27 Jul 08 - 05:44 AM

So impressive and touching heart elsewhere..iwish i could hear it again...Qaseem +923002114384


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 28 Jul 08 - 08:36 AM

There is some interesting historical information in Wikipedia in the article Red River Valley (song)

See also this "disambiguation page" at Wikipedia on the subject Red River.

As a Minnesotan, I am most familiar with our Red River, also known as the Red River of the North, which forms the boundary between Minnesota and North Dakota, and continues northward into Manitoba, Canada, finally emptying into Lake Winnipeg.

Notable cities along its route are

Wahpeton, North Dakota
Breckenridge, Minnesota
Fargo, North Dakota
Moorhead, Minnesota
Grand Forks, North Dakota
East Grand Forks, Minnesota
Winnipeg, Manitoba

That area suffered serious flooding in 1997.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Haruo
Date: 13 Jul 09 - 05:30 AM

In my thread on tunes from the Karen Baptist Hymnal, I just posted a variant that I just made up, to a tune there that I am convinced is a Scottish folk song but can't figure out what one.

See this post

Haruo


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Subject: Red River Valley
From: Genie
Date: 23 Aug 09 - 03:45 AM

Interesting discussion and citations. I still can't figure out for sure when and where the song originated, but the version I sing is one I found in an old songbook (possibly a Boy Scout songbook) from the early part of the 20th C. and very similar to those that Q posted above (from "Cowboy Songs," 1938, Powder River Jack H. Lee, pp. 8-9, with sheet music, published by The McKee Printing Co., Butte, Montana). But it also had the verse about "As you go to your home by the ocean ... "

I thought it placed the date of the song as far back as the 1870s, though. But I'd have to see if I can find that songbook again.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 23 Aug 09 - 01:18 PM

For dating, see John Garst posts in thread 63785:
Red River Valley

1889 earliest verified date (John Garst, in thread linked above, song titled "Lady in Love."


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Genie
Date: 23 Aug 09 - 05:42 PM

Seems like the lyrics have been dated back to a few years earlier:
Origins: Red River Valley


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 23 Aug 09 - 05:50 PM

Where? Earlier dates (a pencil ms. of R R V with a pencil date of 1879 cannot be verified.
Fowke's speculations cannot be verified.
Summarized in my last post to the thread you link; John Garst's research in that thread is the best information we have.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: misbeahave
Date: 23 Aug 09 - 11:56 PM

The only RRV ballads I can remember were sung by Roy Rogers and Gene Autry


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: GUEST,Larry Saidman
Date: 30 Apr 10 - 01:46 AM

Now I'm really curious about the origin of the version I've sung for a number of years. I thought I got it from an Edith Fowke collection, but thanks to Stewie's post I realize that's not the case. I remember reading about it's origins being the common practice of white men impregnating native women, then leaving never to be found again.

The words I learned were:

It's a long time that I Have Been waiting
For the words that you never would say
But alas my last hope it has vanished
For they say you are going away

Come and sit by my side if you love me
Do not hasten to bid me adieu\
Just remember the Red River Valley
And the girl who has loved you so true.

Often think of that Red River Valley
And how lonesome and sad I will be
Often think of those times by the river
In the evening among prairie flowers.


Anybody know where I may have picked up that last verse?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Artful Codger
Date: 02 May 10 - 12:43 AM

Compare to the third and fourth verses printed by Fowke in Folk Songs of Canada:

Often think of the Red River Valley.
Very lonely and sad I shall be.

Do remember the heart you are breaking;
Promise you will be faithful to me.

When you sail far across the wide ocean,
May you never forget those bright hours
That we spent on the banks of the river
In the evenings among prairie flowers!


In numerous versions, both cowboy and furtrapper, you will encounter similar verses, so it's difficult to say where you might have picked up that precise portmanteau variant.


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Subject: Lyr Add: IN THE BRIGHT MOHAWK VALLEY (Kerrigan)
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 02 May 10 - 11:20 AM

IN THE BRIGHT MOHAWK VALLEY
Words and music by James J. Kerrigan; New York: Howley, Haviland & Co. Copyright 1896

Oh they say from this valley you're going,
We shall miss your sweet face and bright smile,
You will take with you all the sunshine
That has gladdened our hearts for awhile.

I have waited a long time my darling,
For those words that your lips ne'er would say,
Now the hope from my heart has departed,
And I'm told you're going away.

Chorus:For the sake of the past, do not leave me,
Do not hasten to bid me adieu!
Oh, remain in this bright Mohawk valley,
With the fond heart that lives but for you.

Do you think of the valley you're leaving?
Oh, how dreary 'twill be when you go,
Have you thought of the heart, so lonely,
That has loved you and cherished you so.

Tell me not that our lives must be severed,
Give me back, love, the smile once so dear,
Oh! this valley would lost (sic) all its brightness,
If its fairest of flow'rs were not here.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Artful Codger
Date: 02 May 10 - 08:03 PM

Dick, out of curiosity, are you aware if anyone has recorded "Bright Mohawk Valley", either to the "Red River Valley" tune or Kerrigan's original tune? I'm guessing your source for the lyrics was Edith Fowkes' article "'The Red River Valley' Re-examined" (1964).

There have been several previous threads on the history of this song and its variants (including full lyric transcriptions, including Kerrigan's). Notable is that the now-popular tune appears to derive from the chorus of "We Will Walk Through the Streets of the City", music by Dr. T. H. Peacock, published in 1874, sheet music at the Library of Congress's American Memory. I don't know how it compares to Kerrigan's music, as I've never seen a music transcription of the latter.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Artful Codger
Date: 02 May 10 - 10:42 PM

Norman Cazden provides some interesting historical notes in Folk Songs of the Catskills, in his discussion of another song with the same general tune, "The Prisoner's Song". In particular, he mentions a five-verse localized version of "Red River Valley" from Iowa, with dates 1879 and 1885. The Kerrigan derivation has by now been soundly disproved, though it remains perhaps the most famous "alternate version".

Fowke posited that the song arose during the Red River resistance (later characterized a rebellion) of 1869-1870 in Manitoba, Canada, led by Louis Riel. Another poster mentioned that "We Will Walk..." was published only a few years after the rebellion, and could easily have lent its tune to a new song dealing with the earlier event. Though it's also possible that Peacock borrowed a popular tune for the chorus of his music, and his credit properly only applies to the verse tune and arrangement. And it's possible the text and tune were written independently and were only married some time later.

In short, the precise provenance remains conjectural, though it's generally accepted that the lyrics arose in Manitoba in the 1870's, possibly as early as 1869. It had spread to other parts of Canada by the time of the North-West Rebellion (1885, the second Riel rebellion) and was already being adapted in the U.S. by 1879. The tune dates at least from 1874.


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE RED RIVER VALLEY
From: Taconicus
Date: 08 Jul 10 - 09:11 PM

A discussion at folkinfo.org cites notes from the aforementioned Penguin book to the effect that "Later research indicates that it was known in at least five Canadian provinces before 1896, and was probably composed during the Red River Rebellion of 1870 [and] told of an Indian or half-breed girl lamenting the departure of her white lover, a soldier who came west with Colonel Wolseley to suppress the first Riel rebellion."

I believe the version of "Red River Valley" mentioned above and quoted in another Mudcat thread by John Garst (via Richie), is the earliest written version, since other similar versions seem to have added to or modified it, but that cannot currently be verified. It can be seen in a pencilled manuscript in the Edwin Ford Piper Collection, The University of Iowa Libraries, Iowa City, Iowa, and is marked at the bottom, "Nemaha 1879. Harlan 1885."

In the same collection is what appears to be a clipping from a newspaper column of which the penciled manuscript may have been the source. It has the same lyrics except for some minor changes that may have been made because the author thought they "scan" better in song, or that some copy editor made for reasons of spelling or grammar--or maybe a combination of both (e.g., "o'ershadows me" is changed to "shadows o'er me" and "awhile" is changed to "a while"). I have copies of both so I guess I could upload them if I can figure out a way to put the citation on them.

------------------------------
The Red River Valley

From the valley they say you are going,
I shall miss your bright eyes and fair smile;
But alas, you take with you the sunshine
That has brightened my pathway awhile.

Chorus:
Then consider awhile ere you leave me
Do not hasten to bid me adieu
But remember the Red River Valley
And the heart that has loved you so true.

Do you think of the valley you're leaving,
How lonesome and dreary 'twill be?
Do you think of the heart you have broken
And the sorrow that o'ershadows me?

It is a long time I've been waiting
For the words that you never would say,
But alas, all my hopes they have vanished
For they say you are going away.

When you go to your home by the ocean,
O do not forget the sweet hours,
That we spent in the Red River Valley
And be true to your promise to me.

The fair maiden prays for her lover
To the spirit that rules o'er the world
May his pathway be covered with sunshine
Is the prayer of the Red River girl.

Nemaha 1879.
Harlan 1885

Citation: The Edwin Ford Piper Collection, The University of Iowa Libraries, Iowa City, Iowa


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alternate Red River Valley
From: Taconicus
Date: 05 Dec 11 - 07:54 PM

I've been able to obtain the manuscript mentioned in the above post and have posted it here. Also see this thread.


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