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The World's Oldest Folk Song?

steve t 06 May 98 - 04:46 AM
Frank in the swamps 06 May 98 - 06:42 AM
Jon W. 06 May 98 - 10:48 AM
Earl 06 May 98 - 12:25 PM
Bruce O. 06 May 98 - 12:51 PM
Bruce O. 06 May 98 - 03:33 PM
Bill D 06 May 98 - 05:40 PM
Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca 06 May 98 - 07:49 PM
Bruce O. 07 May 98 - 02:01 PM
Bill D 07 May 98 - 03:38 PM
Alice 07 May 98 - 09:47 PM
Alice 07 May 98 - 10:16 PM
Frank in the swamps 08 May 98 - 05:05 AM
Bill D 09 May 98 - 12:46 PM
steve t 10 May 98 - 05:42 AM
Alice 10 May 98 - 12:08 PM
Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca 10 May 98 - 05:48 PM
Alice 10 May 98 - 08:29 PM
Bruce O. 11 May 98 - 01:43 PM
Metchosin 26 Feb 00 - 09:40 PM
Metchosin 26 Feb 00 - 09:54 PM
Metchosin 26 Feb 00 - 09:58 PM
Metchosin 26 Feb 00 - 10:06 PM
Metchosin 26 Feb 00 - 10:10 PM
kendall 26 Feb 00 - 10:29 PM
McGrath of Harlow 27 Feb 00 - 08:36 PM
Crowhugger 28 Feb 00 - 06:05 AM
GUEST,Nick 11 Nov 06 - 07:26 PM
Peace 11 Nov 06 - 07:42 PM
Dave'sWife 11 Nov 06 - 07:46 PM
Peace 11 Nov 06 - 07:53 PM
Peace 11 Nov 06 - 07:57 PM
Peace 11 Nov 06 - 08:01 PM
Peace 11 Nov 06 - 08:18 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 12 Nov 06 - 01:53 PM
GUEST,dax 12 Nov 06 - 10:11 PM
Warsaw Ed 12 Nov 06 - 10:42 PM
GUEST,Darowyn 13 Nov 06 - 07:05 AM
leeneia 13 Nov 06 - 10:45 AM
GUEST,Jack Campin 13 Nov 06 - 11:08 AM
Paul Burke 13 Nov 06 - 11:19 AM
GUEST 13 Nov 06 - 11:36 AM
Cool Beans 13 Nov 06 - 04:06 PM
GUEST 13 Nov 06 - 04:16 PM
danensis 13 Nov 06 - 04:55 PM
Peace 13 Nov 06 - 05:55 PM
Peace 13 Nov 06 - 05:56 PM
Cool Beans 13 Nov 06 - 07:13 PM
GUEST,Ukkonen 18 Jan 11 - 03:49 AM
MGM·Lion 18 Jan 11 - 06:16 AM
Jack Campin 18 Jan 11 - 06:37 AM
GUEST,Neil D 18 Jan 11 - 10:15 AM
GUEST,andymac 18 Jan 11 - 02:25 PM
GUEST 18 Jan 11 - 04:32 PM
Steve Gardham 18 Jan 11 - 06:43 PM
GUEST,Ukkonen 19 Jan 11 - 04:34 AM
GUEST,sorry 19 Jan 11 - 04:52 AM
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Subject: Oldest folk
From: steve t
Date: 06 May 98 - 04:46 AM

Dulcimer asked when music started getting written down. Does anyone know the following trivia:

Oldest record of singing

Oldest lyrics that have always been sung

Oldest non-ceremonial / non-professional (ie folk) song

Oldest folk song for which we still know tune

The age of that prehistoric flute they found with a modern 7 note scale.


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Frank in the swamps
Date: 06 May 98 - 06:42 AM

Steve, you can find a good read on the neolithic flute at

http://www.sciam.com/0997issue/0997scicit4.html

If you can get a hard copy of the magazine, you might get a little more info. They often abreviate their online articles.

Frank.


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Jon W.
Date: 06 May 98 - 10:48 AM

Well, let's see--Homer wrote his epics when? about 700-800 B.C.? They were sung, were they not? David wrote his psalms around 1000 B.C. and included musical directions in some of them. 500 years before that, Moses sang a song after escaping from the Egyptians, the lyrics are in the book of Exodus. The Epic of Gilgamesh predates that by several hundred years, I believe. Was it sung? These should qualify for your first two questions. As for the oldest non-professional/non-ceremonial song, find the age of the oldest professional/ceremonial song, post date it by ten minutes, and you're there. Human nature being what it is, I'm sure there was some wag around making a parody of it as soon as it left the lips of the originator.

I'll leave the forth question for Bruce O. and Frank I.T.S has answered the fifth.


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Earl
Date: 06 May 98 - 12:25 PM

My guess for oldest song is the Na-nana-na-na-na song mentioned in the "American Cultural Oddites" thread.


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Bruce O.
Date: 06 May 98 - 12:51 PM

I don't know if Gilgamesh was even poetical. The Descent of Inanna (in which her brother, Gilgamesh, appears) is poetical, but I don't know if it was sung. I seem to recall that the Opie's ODNR has a facsimile of the early "I have 4 sisters beyond the sea" (I gave my love a cherry without a stone).


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Bruce O.
Date: 06 May 98 - 03:33 PM

Correction, it is the poetic tale 'The Huluppu Tree', not 'The Descent of Inanna' that Gilgamesh appears as Inanna's brother. In 'The Courtship of Inanna and Dumuzi' (the bawdy one) Dumuzi came to her singing, but it's not obvious the any of the poetic tales are songs.


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Bill D
Date: 06 May 98 - 05:40 PM

There is a record somewhere for a Egyptian water-hauling chant/song from 4000 years ago..


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca
Date: 06 May 98 - 07:49 PM

How did they get the tune for the 4000 year old chant? Were Egyptian water haulers still singing it, or did the ancient Egyptians leave some form of musical notation that we managed to decipher?

What is the oldest known folk song in English? Was, for instance, the song about King John and the Abbot of Canterbury actually written in the time of King John?

The Ballad of Robin Hood must be fairly old.


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Bruce O.
Date: 07 May 98 - 02:01 PM

"Summer is Icumen In" may be the oldest in English with music. The version of "King John and the Abbot of Canterbury" that is known now was published between 1683 and 1685. There's an older version in the Percy Folio MS, but was it a ballad? Same goes for the early Robin Hood's that Child gave, no evidence as a ballad (many early pieces in Child and and others in Percy Folio MS appear more like 'metrical histories' (poetic tales) rather than ballads. I take ballad to mean now that it was in poetical form and was sung. This was not the case in earlier centuries for all the pieces then called ballads.


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Bill D
Date: 07 May 98 - 03:38 PM

as I understood it, they found heiroglyphics with some of the same words that were still being sung recently along the Nile...the details of the language has evolved, but the song seemed to be the same... a bit 'folk-processed', but still recognizable. After all, the job it was written for has changed little in thousands of years. I suppose that if we still had lots of sailing ships, we'd still be singing sea chanties 'seriously'...


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Alice
Date: 07 May 98 - 09:47 PM

A web page related to this topic is "A Brief History of Singing" at http://www.lawrence.edu/~koopmajo/
It mentions folk songs, sacred music, and art songs from 'prehistoric vocalism' to more recent history.

alice


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Alice
Date: 07 May 98 - 10:16 PM

Here is a quote from the web page I noted in my last message.
......(the oldest)

----

It is a song, the Sumerian Hymn to Creation, dated before 800 B.C., which is the oldest notated music extant. Egyptian musical culture existed by the 4th millennium B.C., and music was prominent in the social and religious life of the Old Kingdom. Egyptian instruments changed significantly as the New Kingdom era (1700-1500 B.C.) began. The change, which may have reflected foreign influence, was from delicate timbre instruments to louder ones and was surely followed by similar changes in singing tone for, over time, a culture's instrumental timbres and vocal tone always tend to match. There are many drawings extant which confirm that large choruses and orchestras existed in the New Kingdom.

Grecian culture had a highly developed art music which showed signs of both a folk music origin and some Egyptian influence. The poetry of Sappho (600 B.C.) and others was often sung in contests, with melodies and rhythms based on the poetic meters. Singing was associated with all forms of literature and with dance. The ode, the dithyramb (a choral tribute to Bacchus and the forerunner of tragedy) and the drama all employed singers who moved to the rhythm of the music. By 500 B.C. ventriloquism had been described and both choruses and solo voices were being used in drama. Greek philosophers attached great value to music and to its cultural purposes. The PYTHAGOREAN SCALE (see Glossary) and a complex theory of music were developed.

The Judaic culture has preserved some melodies that may go back to 500 B.C. The Psalms of David and the Song of Solomon were sung, and we know of an early presence of professional musicians. Both responsorial (a soloist answered by the congregation) and antiphonal (alternating congregational groups) styles were used in singing the Psalms. After the destruction of the Second Temple, in 70 A.D., Jewish music became exclusively vocal. As the dispersed and transient Jews would learn, the human voice is a readily portable instrument, and communal singing serves to bond its participants in both form and purpose. Like the Egyptians, Jewish singers may have shared musical directions and reminders with hand-signs (CHEIRONOMY). Cantillation, the intoning of sacred texts using ancient melodic formulae, written with symbols called ta'amim, was an important musical format. Jewish prayer chants, which were based on ancient melodic lines and often highly ornamented, would have a considerable influence on Christian plainchant.

alice


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Frank in the swamps
Date: 08 May 98 - 05:05 AM

Alice, thanks for the url. Here's another one.

The Cantigas de de Santa Maria, 13 century Spanish collection of songs. Facsimiles, images and more...

http://www.pbm.com/~lindahl/cantigas/

Enjoy, Frank i.t.s.


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Bill D
Date: 09 May 98 - 12:46 PM

found this while searching...

also this which includes this paragraph in a lengthy article

"The field of Greek folk - i.e. non-ecclesiastical - music has benefited in particular from the Athonite music manuscripts since, thanks to the monks' love of music, they contain the only surviving examples of songs, scored with Byzantine notation. Iviron Cod. 1189 from the year 1562 contains the oldest song set to music. The well-known thirteen songs in Cod. 1203 (ca. 1700), also from Iviron, and the three in Xeropotamou Cod. 262 (early 17th c.) provide a firm basis for the study of folk music. In addition, mention ought to be made of Vatopedi Cod. 1428, written in 1818 by Nikephoros Kantouniaris ('archimandrite of the throne of Antioch'), which is the fullest collection of songs of all types, principally urban ones. "


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: steve t
Date: 10 May 98 - 05:42 AM

Regarding Summer is Iccumen In, RUS claims it's the earliest part music in existance, dating back to the 13th century -- the oldest manuscript of part music anyway. Of course, RUS has been known to make an error now and then...


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Alice
Date: 10 May 98 - 12:08 PM

If we are not limiting ourselves to the English language...13th century ... not all that long ago. No one has mentioned China and the rest of Asia. Here is a website
http://www.melodyofchina.com/mr/
Chinese Music Research

One publication listed with a description in their newsletter page is "Chinese Folk Songs and Folk Singers".

Alice


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca
Date: 10 May 98 - 05:48 PM

What about Beowulf? Is there any evidence that it was ever sung, perhaps by professional minstrels?


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Alice
Date: 10 May 98 - 08:29 PM

I went for a long scenic drive up the Gallatin River canyon today, and listened to one of my favorite Hawaiian recordings... Israel Kamakawiwo'ole, 'Facing Future'. I thought of this thread discussion. Anyone know the history of Polynesian music? Back in the 70's I learned a Maori war chant dance, some Tahitian, and both ancient and modern Hula. I have a video that is a documentary of the Merry Monarch Festival. The dance and music is incredible.

Alice


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Bruce O.
Date: 11 May 98 - 01:43 PM

Beowulf: It is clear that the poem as we now have it wasn't sung to a fixed tune as we would call it today. There are anywhere from 4 to 8 stressed syllables per line. In his notes to his translation, 1963, Burton Raffel suggested that the poem was an extended version of an old song. Robert P. Creed in the 'Afterword' suggested it was chanted and the harp mentioned was played only when the chanter or reciter was silent (catching his breath orn resting).


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Metchosin
Date: 26 Feb 00 - 09:40 PM

"In this dim prehistoric world, music had magic powers: people thought it could heal sickness, purify the body and mind and work miracles in the realm of nature. Similar powers are attributed to music in the Old Testament" from A History of Western Music

"same as it ever was".... Once In a Lifetime.... Talking Heads


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Metchosin
Date: 26 Feb 00 - 09:54 PM

Windplayer magazine reported that in 1995, archaeologists in Slovenia on a routine dig unexpectedly unearthed the oldest musical instrument ever found—a flute carved by a Neanderthal sometime between 43,000 and 80,000 years ago from the thighbone of a now-extinct cave bear. When the location of its tone holes was analyzed, it became apparent that the prehistoric flute was designed to play a diatonic scale, the same do-re-mi progression that we know from Western music.


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Metchosin
Date: 26 Feb 00 - 09:58 PM

guess that really makes some of us truly Neanderthals, eh


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Metchosin
Date: 26 Feb 00 - 10:06 PM

and you can read more about it if you click here


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Metchosin
Date: 26 Feb 00 - 10:10 PM

sorry Frank, as always I am a little redundant.


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: kendall
Date: 26 Feb 00 - 10:29 PM

As I understand it, THE FOX dates back to about 1100 ad


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 27 Feb 00 - 08:36 PM

Singing goes way back before humans.


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Subject: RE: Oldest folk
From: Crowhugger
Date: 28 Feb 00 - 06:05 AM

I'm just guessing, but maybe the oldest music that's still being sung is from the Torah. I know diddley about the Jewish tradition beyond the visible things like kosher food/dishes and yarmulkas (sp?), but one example would be the Pesach ceremony, which has been sung since there was a reason to celebrate it. Surely the cantors were singing something before that?

Can someone with more than a passing knowledge help me out here?


Threads combined. Messages below are from a new thread.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: The Worlds Oldest Folk Song?
From: GUEST,Nick
Date: 11 Nov 06 - 07:26 PM

Just wondering about something... and I know there will not be any definite answer, in fact the question is calculated to make sure there is not.
How far back can anyone claim to trace "The Oldest Folk Song" ? what sources support such a claim? What is the song? Would there be a difference between oldest FOLK song and oldest SONG?

Ogggg Now Sing..... Mastodon oh mastodon your tusks shine brightly.
Mastodon Oh Mastodon ........

Whack Fall The Day
Nick


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Subject: RE: The Worlds Oldest Folk Song?
From: Peace
Date: 11 Nov 06 - 07:42 PM

It was likely a blues song. Something like

Gonna meet my baby, down near the poolhall light
Gonna meet my baby, down near the poolhall light
If that T-rex don't get me
Ever'thing gonna work out right


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Subject: RE: The Worlds Oldest Folk Song?
From: Dave'sWife
Date: 11 Nov 06 - 07:46 PM

Guest_Nick is about to be eaten alive by mudcat purists who hate such threads and/or who will list seventeen older threads on similar sujects.

Duck Nick, duck!
    ...or by an Anonymous Fellow Poster who will dare to combine the threads so people can easily see what has been discussed before.
    I hate those pedantic lecture threads that condemn people for not knowing what was posted before.
    -Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: Peace
Date: 11 Nov 06 - 07:53 PM

Gonna help ol' Nick to see the doctor right away
Gonna help o'l Nick to see the doctor right away
He shoulda ducked real fast, baby
That's all I got to say


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: Peace
Date: 11 Nov 06 - 07:57 PM

Gonna tell ol' Shambles that Joe done copped a thread
Gonna tell ol' Shambles that Joe done copped a thread
Gonna tell ol' Shambles
Exactly what the ChiefoftheMudcateditingteam done said


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: Peace
Date: 11 Nov 06 - 08:01 PM

It is I, it is I, who will dare to combine these threads
Yes baby, it is I, it is I, who will dare to combine these threads
You listen to me baby
That's what the man done said


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: Peace
Date: 11 Nov 06 - 08:18 PM

I have a classic blues song on the go and does anyone say anything about it? NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! Bah, humbug.

Bah, humbug baby, humbug is what I thay
Bah, humbug baby, humbug is what I thay
If you don't like my blues song
Bah, humbug is what I thay


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 12 Nov 06 - 01:53 PM

Suggested Reading:

"A History of Western Music," 1960 (7th ed. 2005), Grout, Palisca, and Burkholder, 965pp., W. W. Norton.
The standard on Western music.
Essentially begins with the Greek heritage and the early Christian church. Includes summaries of ancient Greek musical systems. The earliest notated fragment on papyrus (3rd or 2nd c. B. C.) is from "Orestes," by Euripides, part of the chorus. Th stele, with the skolion by Seikilos, is later, c. 1st c. ("As long as you live, be light-hearted. Let nothing trouble you. Life is only too short, and time takes its toll").

The 7th ed. is about $75 new, $55 used; the 6th ed (2000) about $12. The 4th ed., 1988 (mine) is a throw-away. Used in many university introductory music courses.

Nothing on Indian, Chinese ancient music.
---------------------------

Thrasher, A. R., 2001, "Chinese Musical Instruments," is an introduction into the music as well. Inexpensive.

Dattilam et al., 1997, "A Compendium of Ancient Indian Music," is expensive. Not seen.


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: GUEST,dax
Date: 12 Nov 06 - 10:11 PM

Without question the oldest song:
   "I'll Give My Love An Apple" by Eve and The Serpents.


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: Warsaw Ed
Date: 12 Nov 06 - 10:42 PM

"Don't Stand Under The Apple Tree With Anyone Else But Me"


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: GUEST,Darowyn
Date: 13 Nov 06 - 07:05 AM

From: Bruce O.

"Beowulf: It is clear that the poem as we now have it wasn't sung to a fixed tune as we would call it today. There are anywhere from 4 to 8 stressed syllables per line."

Well I'd guess that if you can't sing a sing with odd length lines, that makes the Psalms impossible as well as most of Paul Simon's songs!
Of course you can sing Beowulf, as long as you can get close to pronouncing the Anglo Saxon as if it was a living language and not an invocation to the Dark Gods of Hyperboria.
I know you can sing Beowulf, because I have done it- an extract from Chapter 11, not all of it- that would make Wagner's Ring cycle a three minute single by comparison!
There are academics who talk about the tune for Beowulf, mentions have been found of "up" and "down" phrases, possibly meaning imperfect and perfect cadences.   
Listen to the version on my website,
http://www.darowyn.co.uk
then tell me it can't be sung!
Cheers
Dave


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: leeneia
Date: 13 Nov 06 - 10:45 AM

I'm interested in early music. The oldest pieces of playable, popular music that I have encountered are

Sumer is a-cumen in
Salve Regina
13th century works from southern France, such as Douce Dame Jolie
the cantigas collected by Alphonso IX of Spain. 13th C.

I don't know about the authenticity of the other pieces, but somewhere on the net I've seen facsimiles of the cantigas. These manuscripts are so vague (no keys, no time signatures, no bar lines) that I wondeer how anybody can say how the music went. However, people publish cantigas, and the results are sure fun to play. So we play them.


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: GUEST,Jack Campin
Date: 13 Nov 06 - 11:08 AM

"Douce Dame Jolie" is by Guillaume de Machaut, who was 14th century and not from southern France.

Some mediaeval rhythmic notation is quite precise - barlines don't make much difference. Ancient Greek notation was even better.

"Worldes blis" and "Westron wynde" are both older than "Sumer is icumen in". I think "Edi beo thu, hevene quene" is the oldest known English song. But none of these has survived in a continuous tradition. Maybe some of the Italian "laude" have?

I would bet this one is pretty old:

X:1
T:Bafta Hindi
S:Baheega Sidky Rasheed, Egyptian Folk Songs
M:2/4
L:1/8
K:D Minor
dd A    A|dd A    A|AA B    d|^cB A2 |
AA (B/A/)G|GG (A/G/)F|FF (G/F/)E| ED A2 |
AA (B/A/)G|GG (A/G/)F|FF (G/F/)E| ED D2|]

since as well as Egypt, it is known in Turkey (dunno the words) and in Italy it's a "tarantella".


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: Paul Burke
Date: 13 Nov 06 - 11:19 AM

One of the oldest songs must be the one that was sung by the ancient Phoenician sailors as they rested their oars after a hard day's rowing in the burning Mediterranean sun, and enjoyed the cool evening as the sun sank beyond the Pillars of Hercules:

Trireme goodnight,
Trireme goodnight,
Goodnight trireme,
Goodnight trireme,
I'll see you in my dreams.


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: GUEST
Date: 13 Nov 06 - 11:36 AM

Stuck inside of Giza with the Memphis blues again.


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: Cool Beans
Date: 13 Nov 06 - 04:06 PM

"Hurray for Cave Seven!" (or something similar), from Mel Brooks and Carl Reiner's 2,000-year-old-man routine.


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: GUEST
Date: 13 Nov 06 - 04:16 PM

Was it something by Tyrannosaurus Rex?


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: danensis
Date: 13 Nov 06 - 04:55 PM

Diatomic kittens?


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: Peace
Date: 13 Nov 06 - 05:55 PM

"One of the oldest songs must be the one that was sung by the ancient Phoenician sailors as they rested their oars after a hard day's rowing in the burning Mediterranean sun, and enjoyed the cool evening as the sun sank beyond the Pillars of Hercules:

Trireme goodnight,
Trireme goodnight,
Goodnight trireme,
Goodnight trireme,
I'll see you in my dreams."

That was so good I had to see it again!


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: Peace
Date: 13 Nov 06 - 05:56 PM

"Stuck inside of Giza with the Memphis blues again."

And that, too.


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: Cool Beans
Date: 13 Nov 06 - 07:13 PM

Going back to Q's citation from Euripides...So, that's like the early version of "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life." Hunh.
AS for "Beowulf" I hate the part where he eats the duck. Oh wait, that's "Peter and the Wolf." Never mind.


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: GUEST,Ukkonen
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 03:49 AM

"Frog went a courtin"

Mentioned in the literature earlier but MELODY WRITTEN DOWN 1611 in Scotland


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 06:16 AM

In Europe, what of the Trouvère tradition of France & Navarre, cC12-C14?

Psalm 137, "By the waters of Babylon ... Sing us of the songs of Zion ... How shall we sing the Lord's song in a strange land?" {the Lord's song presumably meaning one of their own, not the gentile Babylonians', so presumably not specifically religious}, seems to point to a well-established tradition of singing of songs [*shirim*] among the Jews at time of the Babylonian exiles, early C6 BCE [about 600-540].

... as e.g. the songs at the end of the Haggadah Passover service-book, traditional songs not of a specifically religious kind, like the children's cumulative song about the one kid that Father bought in the market for 2 farthings {anyone remember the film?}, which are intended presumably to provide some relaxation on what is supposed to be a celebratory occasion in which the children play a prominent part.

~Michael~


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: Jack Campin
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 06:37 AM

Source? The usual cite for that is Ravenscroft, who was from London.

The story ultimately goes back to Aesop, and an elaborated version of it that might have been known in Ravenscroft's time was the Scots one by Henryson (around 1490), but that's very far from being a folk song (probably never meant to be sung at all).


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: GUEST,Neil D
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 10:15 AM

Now I've heard there was a secret chord
That David played, and it pleased the Lord
But you don't really care for music, do you?
It goes like this
The fourth, the fifth
The minor fall, the major lift
The baffled king composing Hallelujah


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: GUEST,andymac
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 02:25 PM

No-one has mentioned the Norse sagas as examples of early European verse that would have been recited/sung on occasion. Not as old as some of the Middle Eastern examples mentioned but nonetheless pretty venerable.


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: GUEST
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 04:32 PM

I always thought the oldest song was "If you are the only girl in the world" sung by a chap called Adam under an apple tree somewhere


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 06:43 PM

A Lullaby?


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: GUEST,Ukkonen
Date: 19 Jan 11 - 04:34 AM

Music is surely as old as we are. No..wait.. much older.
I thought this topic was about the melody written down.


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Subject: RE: The World's Oldest Folk Song?
From: GUEST,sorry
Date: 19 Jan 11 - 04:52 AM

Just read the 1st post again. I dont know where i got the idea from. Anyways.. froggie went a courtin´


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