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Origins/Author: Dark Island

DigiTrad:
DARK ISLAND 2
THE DARK ISLAND


Related threads:
Lyr Req: Dark Island (Alan Bell) (18)
(DTStudy) DTStudy: The Dark Island (27)
Nationality of songs (104)
Dark Island: Too late to have DigiTrad alteration? (7)
Lyr Req: The Dark Island (Alan Bell) (10)
Information on The Dark Island (5)
(origins) Tune Req: The Dark Isle (14)
Dark Island (47)
(origins) Origin: The Dark Island (41)
(origins) Lyr/Tune Add: The Dark Isle (16)
Lyr Req: Eilean Dorcha (3)


GUEST,Gin 01 Jul 01 - 05:17 PM
nutty 01 Jul 01 - 05:29 PM
GUEST,Bobby Bob, Ellan Vannin 01 Jul 01 - 06:50 PM
IvanB 01 Jul 01 - 07:04 PM
GUEST,kendall 01 Jul 01 - 07:26 PM
Malcolm Douglas 01 Jul 01 - 08:07 PM
Barry Finn 01 Jul 01 - 08:24 PM
kendall 01 Jul 01 - 09:09 PM
GUEST,rossey 01 Jul 01 - 09:46 PM
nutty 02 Jul 01 - 03:03 AM
GUEST 02 Jul 01 - 04:22 AM
Malcolm Douglas 02 Jul 01 - 07:59 AM
radriano 02 Jul 01 - 05:08 PM
radriano 02 Jul 01 - 05:42 PM
George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca 02 Jul 01 - 07:42 PM
radriano 02 Jul 01 - 07:50 PM
George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca 02 Jul 01 - 07:54 PM
George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca 02 Jul 01 - 08:42 PM
GUEST,rossey 02 Jul 01 - 10:19 PM
Malcolm Douglas 02 Jul 01 - 10:37 PM
Barry Finn 02 Jul 01 - 11:21 PM
Jon Freeman 02 Jul 01 - 11:33 PM
Malcolm Douglas 02 Jul 01 - 11:47 PM
George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca 03 Jul 01 - 02:16 AM
Lyrical Lady 03 Jul 01 - 02:29 AM
George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca 03 Jul 01 - 11:27 AM
radriano 03 Jul 01 - 11:27 AM
GUEST,Colin Webster 12 May 04 - 07:31 AM
George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca 12 May 04 - 04:54 PM
GUEST,g.h. 29 Sep 04 - 09:39 PM
Malcolm Douglas 29 Sep 04 - 10:03 PM
GUEST,ramblin' sid 10 Nov 08 - 06:29 PM
Ian Hendrie 10 Nov 08 - 07:03 PM
nutty 11 Nov 08 - 02:51 AM
Jim Carroll 11 Nov 08 - 03:08 AM
GUEST,Ian Hendrie 11 Nov 08 - 03:37 AM
GUEST,ramblin sid 11 Nov 08 - 04:49 PM
Barry Finn 11 Nov 08 - 08:31 PM
Joe Offer 11 Nov 08 - 10:07 PM
nutty 12 Nov 08 - 03:35 AM
Joe Offer 12 Nov 08 - 03:47 AM
Ian Hendrie 12 Nov 08 - 05:19 AM
GUEST,Claire 17 Jun 14 - 01:58 PM
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Subject: Dark Island
From: GUEST,Gin
Date: 01 Jul 01 - 05:17 PM

First line "In my father's own land I was born to be free"
Suspect it's an older tune with newer words.
Anyone know?

Gin


Search for "dark island" threads


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: nutty
Date: 01 Jul 01 - 05:29 PM

The song was written by Alan Bell who put it to what he believed was a traditional tune. He later discovered that the tune was, in fact, subject to copywright.Consequently anyone with a later version of The Alan Bell Song Book will find that the song is not included. I did once have an original which included it but it has sadly gone missing so I can't help you with the words. sorry


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: GUEST,Bobby Bob, Ellan Vannin
Date: 01 Jul 01 - 06:50 PM

If it's 'The Dark Island' that I'm thinking of, the tune was originally written for a BBC television series, which is why it was in copyright. It was a great composition, though - absolutely in the idiom, so no wonder Alan Bell thought it was tradtional.

There is a set of lyrics in Gaidhlig, and lurking in my dark cupboard is a version sung by David someone on the Lismore record lable. In Gaidhlig it's called 'An tEilean Dorcha'. I'm sure someone will be able to post those.

Shoh slaynt,

Bobby Bob.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: IvanB
Date: 01 Jul 01 - 07:04 PM

Although 'The Dark Island' has been removed from the DT because of copyright restrictions, it's still available at Rick Heit's Yet Another Digital Tradition site, here:

http://sniff.numachi.com/~rickheit/dtrad/lookup.cgi?ti=DARKISLE&tt=DARKISLE

I don't know if it's the one you're looking for, though. The lyrics begin quite differently from those you quoted.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: GUEST,kendall
Date: 01 Jul 01 - 07:26 PM

Caroline Paton does a great job on this one.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 01 Jul 01 - 08:07 PM

The original song is still available here, and can be found by searching via the "Digitrad and Forum Search" on the main Forum page for dark island.

A more recent (and not very impressive) set of lyrics written to the tune (which is a recent composition, and still in copyright) has indeed been been withdrawn, apparantly at the insistence of people who thought that, while it was alright for them to use somebody else's original composition to make money for themselves, it was not alright for anybody else to make their rather poor lyrics available to others.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: Barry Finn
Date: 01 Jul 01 - 08:24 PM

Nicely worded Malcolm & I'm in total agreement with you. Barry


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: kendall
Date: 01 Jul 01 - 09:09 PM

I agree the lyrics are Chamber of Commerce, but, Caroline sings it so well, it is easy to overlook that.


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Subject: Lyr Add: DARK ISLAND (Stewart Ross)
From: GUEST,rossey
Date: 01 Jul 01 - 09:46 PM

This is not the one you're looking for but - my late father Stewart Ross (1929-1993) of Inverness, Scotland - wrote a very well known version of the song in 1963, after being assured that the tune was traditional. It was published on sheet music and record, where he was formally registered as the author of the lyric alone.

There is a very long story involved. The tune had two earlier titles before becoming known as Dark Island for the TV series. Disputes arose over the origin of the tune and the two larger selling vocal versions. This situation has never been fully resolved and there are rights and wrongs on both sides, as the publishers exploited both versions of the song at the time, without payment and credited to the wrong author. Catch-22: to be credited today, artists and record companies have to know whose version they are using in the first place - and not put it down as the other version. Back in the 60's and 70's, the record company, artists, and publishers knew whose version they were using (and I have legal papers which prove it).

My father did win one court case in Scotland against a small record company for the use of the lyric, but the whole thing became a mess when the larger record company PYE became defunct.

The Ross version has appeared on over 40 albums, singles, TV advertised samplers etc. The Silver version is now the most widely used and recorded - but the ghost versions always come back. Both of these lyrics were written within one month each other. The Ross version was the first set to be published. The Mudcat site, however, has planted a bit of a time-bomb for my family by including it on their Digi site without credit or permission - and with misheard lyrics which do not scan, and don't do it any justice.

There were at least 4 English lyrics that I know of written in the 60's to versions of the tune. Each have different properties and suit singers in various ways. The Ross words were written to a very different version of the tune and are not a straight fit to the accordion tune.

DARK ISLAND
Words PRS copyrighted, Stewart Ross (c) 1963

In the years long gone by when I first left my home,
I was young and I wanted the wide world to roam,
But now I am older and wiser you see,
That lovely Dark Island is calling to me.

CHORUS: Though I've wandered away from the land of my birth,
And been roaming around to the ends of the earth.
Still my heart is at home in a land far away,
That lovely Dark Island where memories stray.

[This verse is usually axed for length's sake:]

With a sorrowful heart I look back through the years.
When I think of that Island, my eyes fill with tears.
Once again then I long for the land I adore,
That lovely Dark Island I long for once more.

CHORUS: Though...

LAST VERSE: One day I'll return to that far distant shore,
And from that Dark Island I'll wander no more.
Till the day that I die, I will no longer roam,
For that lovely Dark Island will be my last home.

CHORUS: Though...
That lovely dark island where memories stray.

My father went on to write other less problematic copyright works where he wrote both words and music. Mostly he wrote in the country music vein - and Scottish/Irish emigration songs. 'My Bonnie Maureen' is one really nice song recorded by Daniel O'Donnell on platinum selling 'From the Heart'. Another, 'Here's to Scottish Whisky' has become very big on Scottish samplers, - but nothing eclipses the sales of his version of 'dark island' at its peak in the 60's and 70's.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: nutty
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 03:03 AM

If you put "dark island" into the Digitrad and Forum Search box you will see that there has been an ongoing discussion about these various songs but that is no help to GUEST Gin, who is looking for the words of the Alan Bell version.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Islan//d
From: GUEST
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 04:22 AM

I've been trying to avoid getting dragged into debates about quality of lyrics etc. The whole subject is very painful to my family as my father was very systematically ripped off by various parties when it became apparent that his lyrics and arrangement were proving popular.

Points to note. There were no other words to the tune before my father's were written. David Silver wrote a set of lyrics in response to my father's appearing first - and has been paid and very usually credited for both lyrical versions.

It was written as a Scottish song, for his use in bandwork. It was a highland song, written by a highlander in that style, back in 1963 - without any thought of it escaping to foreign territories (England and Ireland). It was his first attempt at songwriting and not high art.

The tune had been played on the Scottish music circuit before being formally copyrighted and had earlier titles including Dr. Mackay's Farewell to Creagorry and Dr. Mcinnes's Farewell to South Uist.

Then words were copyrighted separately to the music. There was no knowledge of any copyright in the music - and no computerised registration system to cross-reference. Stewart Ross was not a direct member of organisations until later. He left checking the tune copyright in the hands of his publisher, who had assured him of the trad story and who registered the lyrics with the PRS. They were the first ever to be registered (one month before Silver's). When it became clear that the tune's traditional origins were being disputed, it was agreed to withdraw it as long as the words would not be used again.

This agreement was broken and the publishers and Silver exploited both versions under the one registration as it had become very popular and considerable record sales, performance and TV fees were made - and paid out to the other parties.

When put under pressure by newspaper stories, the publishers agreed to send a contract - so that the music and words could be united. They went back on this agreement.

After more pressure when my father won a legal case they issued a contract, which should have united words and music officially. They breached the agreement, but obtained the right of payment. The right to be identified as author is still there - but very difficult to establish.

The MCPS need the publishers to fill in a form so that they can unite the words and music on their registration system. David Silver refuses to allow the forms to be filled in. He is understandably and rightly proud of his own version. He still is getting payment from both versions. The late Ian Maclachlan who was something of a fall guy in all this, was never actually involved in the dispute. The contract we have with Westminster Music states Silver to be the party responsible for copyright in both writing music arrangement and words of his version. Silver may well have bought out Maclachlan's share. Either that or something peculiar has gone on with the publisher's own contract drawing dept.

The performing rights were never transferred, and remain registered to Stewart Ross, but cannot be paid out until another agreement is reached over the music. They will not do so - as the PRS/MCPS have a clause which states that there is a minimum writers share on the work if they fill in the forms. So why bother? The words still constitute a separate legal copyright work and should be morally acknowledged under 1988 statutes as it is an asserted historical fact they were written by my father - and registered by PRS though inactive in their payment system. Due to the music problem. The costs in all parties going to the high court are far too great. And so it's all a mess.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 07:59 AM

Good heavens.  There's so often a lot more to these things than we realise, and I for one would do well to remember that.  Clearly I had misunderstood the situation, and I apologise to Mr. Ross for any upset my comments, which in the light of his information were clearly unjustified, may have caused.  As he says, the entry in the DT did not credit the lyric writer; people do tend to post things here without being aware of their origins, often under the misapprehension that they are traditional, and sometimes from an imperfect recollection; this should always be corrected when the facts become known.  In the circumstances I can quite see why it was appropriate to withdraw the DT file.  I apologise for unwittingly adding insult to injury.

Malcolm


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: radriano
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 05:08 PM

Thanks to all who have contributed to this thread.

I had started to learn this song believing that the David Silver words were the original ones. It's too bad that the option of looking at the version Alan Bell wrote is not available anymore.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: radriano
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 05:42 PM

Sorry! I got sidetracked and never finished my thoughts on my last post.

The David Silver lyrics are a bit of a mystery regarding how they would be sung. There are five verses so it doesn't fit easily into the A and B parts of the melody. I had worked up a version of the song using one of the verses as a chorus (using the B part of the tune as the chorus). I have never heard the song version recorded anywhere but have heard the tune as an air or waltz in sessions.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 07:42 PM

Rad, FIVE verses? I only know of three and a chorus.

For a good version of the song, look for Denis Ryan's version.

If you have more verses, please supply the missing verses.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: radriano
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 07:50 PM

You're right, George, and that makes more sense. You see, I saw the lyrics written out with the "isle of my childhood.." verse as the second and last verse with no mention of a chorus.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 07:54 PM

Ah!

HEre are all the threads, PLUS both versions in the DT Database. There is a third version of the song in the first thread.

Dark Island in the DT
 
Dark Island 2 in the DT - Silver & McLaughlin version
Dark Island Oldest
Dark Island #2
Dark Island #3


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 08:42 PM

Rad, here

Dark Island


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island‰\\•\
From: GUEST,rossey
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 10:19 PM

Malcolm, thanks for apologising. I have been driven to the point of many nervous breakdowns over the distress every time I hear this song, all caused by a few simple words.

The money is not an issue to my family, the credit for the writing of the words is.

I know you hate the Ross lyric. It's all personal taste and cultural background. I grew up with my father's version which has been famous for over 30 years in this area, but has had a ghostly existence - due to often being put down as David Silver's version and sometimes not being credited at all.

When you hear my father's version sung well, with a good arrangement, it can be very moving - as both the simple emigration words and the altered music have an effect on the audience (again it depends on which culture your audience is). I have heard some really beautiful versions where the combination of my father's words, the music, singing and arrangement - does work well. On the other hand it can be also be a boring dirge when mishandled.

One section of artists go for my father's version because it is an overtly simple emigration song and suits their vocal range, and is not tied to a geographical location. Hence some Donegal singers have applied it to Ireland - when it is in fact a Scottish song written about the Highlands. You can pick or choose with this one, but it was never deliberately written for the established folk market and my father couldn't predict that it would be used in the way it has been.

The more formal David Silver lyric suits some singers far better than my father's (as do some of the others). But again it can sound overblown and turgid when mishandled.

Incidentally, David Silver's version took over as being the most widely used version in the 1980's - and is unassailable. The Ross version had been the biggest sales-wise until then; this was due to it being used, wrongly credited to Silver/Maclachlan on many PYE albums by Calum and Fiona Kennedy, Alasdair Gillies etc. These albums were awarded gold and silver discs. Calum Kennedy and Fiona Kennedy (once big Scottish stars) used it on TV, radio and theatre - and many amateur singers then picked it up as a 'granny pleaser'.

My father actually pleaded with Calum Kennedy, the record company and Essex Music publishers to have the whole thing stopped - but by then it was too widely used and making considerable royalties (in our terms)!

The Silver lyric took over by the 1980's and whilst not wanting to lose royalties from the Ross version, Mr Silver got rather upset when a country music group used the Ross version on an award-winning LP as his own version was now the absolute standard.

Stories were placed by Silver (a then journalist) in many of the national Scottish newspapers that anybody who used the Ross version would have their recordings withdrawn. There were a blaze of stories about the country group's record being banned as using an 'unauthorised' lyric. The contract my father was given was supposed to make it into an authorised version (albeit with a form of royalty waiver), but until the correct forms are filled in with the MCPS it remains in limbo.

So the DigiTrad site is adding to confusion. The two main vocal lyrics have been illegally going out as one for years - even though they are entirely different - and the words cannot be sung to the same tune.

I only ask for my father to be credited for the words. (Nobody should doctor the fact that he wrote them, naive lyrics or not.) The cycle can only broken if artists know that they should be morally credited in the first place to Stewart Ross. Also the lyrics on DigiTrad are misquoted and therefore don't scan as they should. There is also a potential legal minefield with the work, with all parties' rights involved in a tangle which periodically rises to the surface. Artists are always at risk of being drawn into the dispute.

The issue of uniting the words to the tune is difficult - as theoretically permission has been withheld.

Should it be Ross/Maclachlan?

Ian Maclachlan (deceased) has a registration for the tune in name, although there many people such as Mike Oldfield and James Galway plus Chieftains who have put the tune as trad so nobody gets credited - but royalties get automatically diverted to the correct parties.

In 1963, it was very difficult to check copyright - and the whole world of Scottish music was different. No situation such as this should arise today with the available registration checks - but it obviously still does. We've been the victim of record co. Lastly to re-iterate to others that the two main vocal versions were written in 1963, my father's being first.

To reiterate: The tune used in the 1963 BBC TV series was not written for it, but became re-titled as 'Dark Island' to fit as its theme. The tune had done the rounds of the Scottish music circuit for a few years before being formally copyrighted to Maclachlan adding to confusion over its origins. The tune had earlier titles including 'Dr. Mackay's Farewell to Creagorry' and 'Dr. McInness's Farewell to South Uist'.

The vocal versions appeared after the tune was used in the TV series. It was not therefore a case of a wholly conceived song being fiddled around with, but genuine confusion over authorship of the tune.

I hate to think what's out there on earlier discussions of this subject. I'll only get depressed if I look!

Thanks again for earlier apology, Malcolm.

Discussion closed unless anybody has any queries.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 10:37 PM

No further queries; I would, however, like to say that this just goes to show how careful we all need to be in attributing sources.  Until Mr. Ross made these points, I had no idea at all that there was so much in the background that received wisdom on the subject appears to have ignored.  A salutary lesson for me, and I hope, too, for others.  I'm grateful that my apology was accepted.

Malcolm


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: Barry Finn
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 11:21 PM

So sorry Guest Rossey, what I had believed to be trad like so many others & as who had what copyrights now seems not only misleading but criminal. I'm sorry that I played such a part in this & therefore unwillingly perpetuated this injustice. Like Malcolm I hope my apology will be excepted & I thank you for setting your record straight & my best wishes that you & your family will get the credit due your father & because I played that unwilling part in the past, I will be sure in the future to champion your father's claim from here on in. Barry


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 11:33 PM

Just a thought: In the light of what has cropped up in this thread and in the knowledge that any of the other related threads may be revived or found in a search and read in isolation, would it be a good idea to ensure they all have a link to this thread?

Jon


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 11:47 PM

Yes, I think that would be a good idea.  Important information, and an object lesson to us all that few things are ever as straightforward as we may believe them to be.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca
Date: 03 Jul 01 - 02:16 AM

There! Link placed in there pointing to the first message in here from Mr. Ross.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: Lyrical Lady
Date: 03 Jul 01 - 02:29 AM

Hmmmm....Guest Rossie

My late father James Ross (1919 - 1993) was also from Inverness, Scotland ... small world huh? Do you think we could be related?

LL


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca
Date: 03 Jul 01 - 11:27 AM

It certainly is within the realm of possibilities. You should go to that other thread and leave a message.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: radriano
Date: 03 Jul 01 - 11:27 AM

George, thanks for posting that audio file. Unfortunately, my computer at work has no sound card and the file doesn't give me the option to "save as.."


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: GUEST,Colin Webster
Date: 12 May 04 - 07:31 AM

I am a true Scot, born in Thurso. I have always loved bagpipe music and in particular the melody of the Dark Island.

I have been trying to locate the music as I now live in England, but to no avail other than by the internet. I was totally unaware that there were ever any lyrics to this melody and stumbled upon this website by accident and read the article. My reason for writting is this. I too have written words to this melody. Its actually Christian lyrics as I am a minister.

I want to play and sing this song in the church and wondered what the ciopywrite details were for the music? Can you help?

Yours

Colin Webster


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca
Date: 12 May 04 - 04:54 PM

Dark Island at JC's Tune Finder

The tune can be found at the link above in a variety of formats. If you read some of the other threads, you will find some conflicts on the tune as to whether it is or isn't a traditional tune. It's difficult. If you look at the message from GUEST on July 02, 2001 and the message from Rossey from July 01, 2001, you will find probably the most specific information on copyright for the tune and song.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: GUEST,g.h.
Date: 29 Sep 04 - 09:39 PM

wanted to know auther of dark island and where abouts in scotland it was if it was a real island heard one version its eillam dhu


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 29 Sep 04 - 10:03 PM

I'd suggest you read the discussion threads, then. I doubt if there is anything to say on the subject that has not already been said in them.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: GUEST,ramblin' sid
Date: 10 Nov 08 - 06:29 PM

I've just about exhausted all routes to find the Alan Bell lyrics,
is there anybody out there who can put them up for me? I would be most grateful as the "purists" here in the Scottish hinterlands don't believe that there is another version just as good as the original. (I know from personal experience as I once sang it in a folk club....in the 1970's!! unfortunately the onset of accelerated maturity does'nt help the memory!)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: Ian Hendrie
Date: 10 Nov 08 - 07:03 PM

Hi Ramblin Sid, I have loved this song since I first heard it by the Taverners. Here is the version which originally came from the Alan Bell Songbook. I sing it with a capo on the third fret but the chords given below were the ones in the song-book as far as I can remember. Enjoy.

On my (Dm)father's own (F)land I was born to be (C)free
I was born for the (Em)islands, the (Am)boats and the (G)sea
To (Dm)live and to (F)learn as my father had (C)done
The island is (F)changing, the young ones have (C)gone

Chorus : Fare thee well, fare thee well
My (F)island my (C)home
It's away o'er the (Em)ocean (Am)that I must (G)roam
To (Dm)find a new (F)land and learn a new (C)way
But I hope to (F)return in the future some (C)day

I've known the bad ways of the wild roaring surf
I've felt the salt rain as I cut the peat turf
And I've mended the nets in the evening's soft glow
Now these are my memories, wherever I go

The homes are all empty, no fires in the hearth
And the nettles grow tall all along the old path
Where as children we laughed and played our rough games
Now the children have grown up, and the island has changed

The schoolroom is empty, the blackboard is bare
The old floor is dusty, there's no one to care
But there we have danced and sung the night through
Now the old ways have ended, we must learn the new

The fishing is finished, the sheep graze the land
Where my kinsfolk once lived there is only the sound
Of the wind and the waves and the wild sea-birds cry
Now my heart aches with sadness, I must say goodbye.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: nutty
Date: 11 Nov 08 - 02:51 AM

I can't believe that everything that has been said in this thread has been ignored by the previous posters.

Shame on you both, Ian and 'ramblin Sid'


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 11 Nov 08 - 03:08 AM

As I remember it The Dark Island was written for a radio (not television serial as suggested) - a typical product of the Cold War (Rumanian? spies).
Wouldn't have put the serial back as far as 1962 - but perhaps I'm older than I think I am.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: GUEST,Ian Hendrie
Date: 11 Nov 08 - 03:37 AM

I responded to a request for song lyrics and did so without reading all the previous contributions - it was after midnight at the time! If I have committed some copyright sin then perhaps the lyrics could be removed.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: GUEST,ramblin sid
Date: 11 Nov 08 - 04:49 PM

As a absolute beginner in the realms of the internet (3 weeks) have I transgressed in some fashion?, the song was requested so I could sing it in the privacy of my own abode, its not for using to make monetory gain of any kind!   My family, friends and I are all folkies
and have no intention of breaching copywright laws, (although I would have thought that the propogation of the genre would be a good thing).
Nevertheless, my thanks to Ian, and if I have indeed trampled on some PC toes, you have my apologies.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: Barry Finn
Date: 11 Nov 08 - 08:31 PM

It was asked that you give credit due to the actuall writter of the song when singing it. Don't fret about any mistakes you made, shit happens.

Barry


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Subject: ADD: Dark Island (Alan Bell)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 11 Nov 08 - 10:07 PM

It does help if attribution is given. If it comes up later, I try to add it to lyrics that have been posted. But the fact of the matter is that sometimes attribution gets lost. I think it's best to post what you have, and hope that somebody will add attribution later.

So, Nutty, instead of expecting people to read the previous thirty messages and eight threads, what was it that needs to be added or done to make the post so it's not outrageous to you? I breezed through the thread and didn't find it. The matter is very confusing to me - I've seen at least three versions attributed to three different people. Sometimes, I think we have to bypass the arguments and sing the song, and worry about attribution when it comes to making a recording. Still, it there's a post with unattributed lyrics, I always try to go out of my way to add correct attribution information.

-Joe-
This is a little bit different from what was posted above.

THE DARK ISLAND
words by Alan Bell, music by Ian Maclachlan

On my father's own land I was born to be free
I was born to the island, the boats and the sea
To work and to live as we always have done
But I've no son to follow, the young ones have gone

Chorus:
Fare thee well, fare thee well
My island, my home
It's away o'er the ocean now I must roam
To find a new land and learn the new ways
But I hope to return in the future one day

I've known the bad ways of the wild roaring surf
And I've felt the salt rain as I cut the peat turf
And I've mended the nets in the evening's soft glow
Now these are my memories, wherever I go
CHORUS

The homes are all empty, no fires in the hearth
And the nettles grow tall all along the old lanes
Where as children we laughed and played our rough games
Now the children have grown up, the island has changed
CHORUS

The school door is closed, and the blackboard is bare
The old floor is dusty, there's no one to care
But there we have laughed and danced many a night through
Now the old ways have ended, we must learn the new
CHORUS

The fishing is finished, and sheep graze the land
Where my kinsfolk once lived there is only the sound
Of the wind and the waves and the wild sea-birds' cry
Now my heart aches with sadness, I must say goodbye.
CHORUS


Transcribed by ear from the CD, Alan Bell: The Definitive Collection


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: nutty
Date: 12 Nov 08 - 03:35 AM

Joe ... as the above version has been withdrawn from the Alan Bell Songbook and from the DT as it infringed copyright, I am surprised that YOU should see fit to include it again.

This has already been explained in the thread ,
What's the point of having threads if people are not going to read them?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: Joe Offer
Date: 12 Nov 08 - 03:47 AM

Nutty, did you ever happen to notice that there are tens of thousands of songs posted at Mudcat, and that at least some of them are still under copyright protection? In general, we operate under the impression that discussion of songs in the forum falls under "fair use" provisions of copyright law. We also believe that our posting and discussion of songs does a lot to promote and preserve a lot of good songs. Otherwise, why would any songs be posted here? I found the song on an Alan Bell CD that I bought last month, so my impression is that the copyright disagreement has been cleared up. In addition, the copyright infringement dispute apparently involved the use of a melody, not Alan Bell's lyrics.
In this case, there are four songs, maybe more, all using the same tune. Posting the lyrics serves to remove some of the confusion, especially if we provide proper attribution.


-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Dark Island
From: Ian Hendrie
Date: 12 Nov 08 - 05:19 AM

Oh dear, I seem to have started/re-started something! For the record, the version I submitted came from the original Alan Bell Songbook. If the version transcribed from the excellent 'Definitive Alan Bell' CD differs slightly, does this not show that the song has already been absorbed into the folk tradition?
Ian


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Subject: RE: Origins/Author: Dark Island
From: GUEST,Claire
Date: 17 Jun 14 - 01:58 PM

Hi, my mother was sent a record 45rpm of The Dark Island. It was written and recorded by someone she knew. All I can remember was the B side had a song about Benbecula. It started ... To Benbecula I'm going when the sun is.... Can't remember any more. This would have been in the '60s. My mothers name was Mary MacDonald.


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