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Common poems set to music

Artful Codger 07 Sep 06 - 05:13 AM
A Wandering Minstrel 07 Sep 06 - 07:48 AM
Stilly River Sage 07 Sep 06 - 10:56 AM
Big Jim from Jackson 07 Sep 06 - 11:32 AM
KenBrock 07 Sep 06 - 11:32 AM
Haruo 07 Sep 06 - 12:34 PM
Haruo 10 Oct 06 - 04:30 AM
GUEST 10 Oct 06 - 12:28 PM
Darowyn 10 Oct 06 - 01:00 PM
Nigel Parsons 10 Oct 06 - 02:38 PM
Haruo 10 Oct 06 - 02:56 PM
GUEST,CA 10 Oct 06 - 03:01 PM
Micca 10 Oct 06 - 03:22 PM
Don Firth 10 Oct 06 - 03:23 PM
GUEST,Maurice 16 Oct 06 - 03:12 PM
ositojuanito 16 Oct 06 - 03:15 PM
GUEST,Maurice again 16 Oct 06 - 03:17 PM
rich-joy 17 Oct 06 - 07:57 AM
An Buachaill Caol Dubh 17 Oct 06 - 01:33 PM
Georgiansilver 17 Oct 06 - 02:26 PM
Joe_F 17 Oct 06 - 08:49 PM
The Walrus 18 Oct 06 - 05:48 AM
mustradclub 18 Oct 06 - 06:06 AM
freda underhill 03 Nov 06 - 08:10 AM
GUEST,JimP 03 Nov 06 - 08:44 AM
MartinRyan 03 Nov 06 - 11:19 AM
Rowan 03 Nov 06 - 08:50 PM
Haruo 04 Nov 06 - 03:41 PM
emjay 04 Nov 06 - 04:08 PM
Susanne (skw) 05 Nov 06 - 08:57 PM
McGrath of Harlow 06 Nov 06 - 07:09 PM
oldhippie 23 Nov 06 - 11:35 AM
GUEST,Peter Taylor 23 Nov 06 - 12:11 PM
Jill 23 Nov 06 - 06:13 PM
Stewie 23 Nov 06 - 06:53 PM
Haruo 23 Nov 06 - 09:34 PM
Rowan 24 Nov 06 - 01:56 AM
oldhippie 24 Nov 06 - 07:36 AM
An Buachaill Caol Dubh 24 Nov 06 - 07:43 AM
GUEST,Mad Musix 28 Jan 07 - 01:47 PM
GUEST,Mad musix 28 Jan 07 - 04:34 PM
GUEST, still docked 29 Jan 07 - 01:25 PM
Stewart 29 Jan 07 - 02:01 PM
Songster Bob 29 Jan 07 - 02:43 PM
GUEST, still docked 29 Jan 07 - 03:30 PM
GUEST, still docked 29 Jan 07 - 04:18 PM
Haruo 30 Jan 07 - 01:38 AM
DriveForever 31 Jan 07 - 12:45 AM
Leadfingers 31 Jan 07 - 04:52 AM
Leadfingers 31 Jan 07 - 04:53 AM
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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Artful Codger
Date: 07 Sep 06 - 05:13 AM

Joan Morris sings the Oley Speaks version of "On the Road to Mandalay" (composed in 1907) on Moonlight Bay: Songs As Is and Songs As Was. From the liner notes:

{ Lawrence Tibbett sang it in the 1935 movie, Metropolitan. It was later performed by Frankie Laine in his act and recorded in a shortened version by Frank Sinatra. }

This no doubt accounts for its popularity.


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: A Wandering Minstrel
Date: 07 Sep 06 - 07:48 AM

Martin Simpson does an achingly beutiful rendering of Kiplings "The Four Angels" on his Bramble Briar album


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 07 Sep 06 - 10:56 AM

This seems to mostly be a UK thread, but over here in the U.S. Pacific Northwest (Seattle region) my father (John Dwyer) set any number of poems to music. He found Eugene Field's collection of poetry to be quiet fruitful (i.e., one of his tunes was to "The Little Peach" and another was "Little Boy Blue"). "The Ballad of the Merry Ferry" by Emma Rounds, a little poem crying out to be sung, became an informal anthem for our family any time we did ride the ferries in Puget Sound and has turned up in Northwest song books over the years. He was particularly fond of an edition of poetry collected by Louis Untermeyer called Rainbow In the Sky that we read as children. I think each of us kids has managed to get hold of a copy, and I've read to my children from it. There are some poems in here that I simply can't "just read." I have to sing them because that's how Dad used them.

A week or two ago I heard a story on NPR, I think it was a weekend edition of a regular program, in which they played a sung version of "The Cremation of Sam McGee." Or I might have heard it on Prairie Home Companion. But it was NPR and it was pretty recent.

SRS


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Big Jim from Jackson
Date: 07 Sep 06 - 11:32 AM

Wasn't Patterson's "Waltzing Matilda" a poem first, then it was set to music? And I know that Slim Dusty sang "The Man From Snowy River".

Some of you who mentioned Noyes' "The Highwayman"---have you listened to Vera Aspey's (of the duo Gary and Vera Aspey---but it's on a solo album) version of that poem/song?


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: KenBrock
Date: 07 Sep 06 - 11:32 AM

The Simon Sisters (Lucy and Carly) had three albums on Kapp and one on Columbia (reissued later with additional background) with many poem songs. The Coumbia one included Who Has Seen the Wind, The Lobster Quadrille (Lewis Carroll), The Lamb (Blake), Wynken, Blynken and Nod, and I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day. A wikipedia article with their discography is http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Simon_Sisters.

Also, much or all of Blake's Songs of Innocence and Experience has been set by William Bolcom, and also by Hampton, VA's Mike Hassell.


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Haruo
Date: 07 Sep 06 - 12:34 PM

Speaking of the Northwest US, in addition to those Stilly River Sage mentioned, Jesse Odlin's 1898 poem "The Tale of Two Cities" (about the early history of Sedro-Woolley, Washington) has been sung by a number of people (including yours truly), generally to Old Rosin the Beau. There was a time when every schoolkid in Skagit County knew it (which makes it at least locally common) and at least in my family it has survived more than 70 years since my mother (and her siblings and mother) abandoned the family farm to foreclosure in the Depression and moved to Seattle.

Haruo


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Haruo
Date: 10 Oct 06 - 04:30 AM

e.e.cummings' "purer than purest" is in the Unitarian hymnal (Singing the Living Tradition #250, to a tune called STAR by Vincent Persichetti). #3 in the same hymnal is Edna St. Vincent Millay's "The world stands out on either side".

Haruo


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: GUEST
Date: 10 Oct 06 - 12:28 PM

Dark Logh Na Gar - Lord Byron - tune and song (played and sung by Willie Clancy and other Irish musicians and singers
Heather Ale Robert Louis Stephenson (recorded from Wexford Traveller 'Pop's' Johnny Connors
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Darowyn
Date: 10 Oct 06 - 01:00 PM

I know the original thread asked for poems that are not too obscure, so I apologise in advance. However I have recorded a couple of verses of Beowulf, sung in Anglo-Saxon.
I can't find any trace of anyone else attempting to do this within the last thousand years or so. It's on www.darowyn.co.uk, and I hope that posting the link is not violating any Mudcat taboos.
Cheers
Dave


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 10 Oct 06 - 02:38 PM

Welcome aboard Darowyn.

Darowyn's site

A gratuitous link for you

CHEERS
Nigel


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Haruo
Date: 10 Oct 06 - 02:56 PM

But when I go there I see no mention of Beowulf (who/which is incidentally not exactly "obscure", albeit underrecorded). Where is it?

Haruo


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: GUEST,CA
Date: 10 Oct 06 - 03:01 PM

Bit of a chuckle...a teacher of mine told me that almost all of Emily Dickinson's poems could be sung to the tune of the "Gilligan's Island" theme song. He was right. (Just a note: he was NOT an English teacher, thank goodness.)


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Micca
Date: 10 Oct 06 - 03:22 PM

Snuffy (and any one interested) there is a Stonking version of Henry Newbolts "Drakes Drum" on Firm Friends CD (Firm Friends is a quartet 2 of whom are Nutty and Treaties1) I like it so much I have been known to sing it (Can't do the harmonies that they can, tho')


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Don Firth
Date: 10 Oct 06 - 03:23 PM

Byron's "So We'll Go No More A-Roving" has been set to music by Richard Dyer-Bennet and can be heard on his first recording on his own label, Dyer-Bennet Records No. 1.
So we'll go no more a-roving
So late into the night,
Though the heart still be as loving,
And the moon still be as bright.

For the sword outwears its sheath,
And the soul outwears the breast,
And the heart must pause to breathe,
And love itself have rest.

Though the night was made for loving,
And the day returns too soon,
Yet we'll go no more a-roving
By the light of the moon.
He has also recorded "Spanish is the Loving Tongue" (by Charles Badger Clark Jr., original title, "A Border Affair"). I'm not sure if he wrote the tune or if someone else did. A couple of people have set Yeats' "The Song of the Wandering Aengus" to music. I think Jean Redpath has recorded one version of it.

Tons of stuff out there.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: GUEST,Maurice
Date: 16 Oct 06 - 03:12 PM

Sean Tyrell has recorded musical settings of many poems. Have a look at www.seantyrell.com (not sure if he spells it with one or two "l's")


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: ositojuanito
Date: 16 Oct 06 - 03:15 PM

Hi

Phil Ochs recorded 'The Highwayman'

John


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: GUEST,Maurice again
Date: 16 Oct 06 - 03:17 PM

Sorry, that should be www.seantyrrell.com


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: rich-joy
Date: 17 Oct 06 - 07:57 AM

The Widow's Uniform - Barrack Room Ballads & other Soldiers' Poems of Rudyard Kipling, as set to traditional tunes by Peter Bellamy - sung by : Dave Webber / Brian Peters / John O'Hagan / Anni Fentiman / John Morris - 1996 CD

The Man From El Dorado - songs and stories of Robert Service - by David Parry (with Ian Robb, Alistair Brown, Graham Townsend, Ken Whiteley) - CD

"A Smuggler's Song" (Kipling) - recorded by John Roberts & Tony Barrand, 1992, on Golden Hind CD - "A Present from the Gentlemen - a Pandora's Box of English Folk Songs"

"Baptism" sung and spoken by Joan Baez (music composed and conducted by Peter Schickele) - (1967) - Vanguard CD, 2003
(it still stirs me - but then, this is from my teenage years ...    :~)

Henry Lawson and AB Paterson - probably too numerous to mention!!

Selections from AE Houseman's "A Shropshire Lad" - music by Polly Bolton, with the late Nigel Hawthorne - CD

"Song, To Althea from Prison" by Richard Lovelace (and sung beautifully by my partner, Paul Lawler!) - but the music composer escapes me for the moment ...


These are the first ones that spring to mind for me ...
Cheers! R-J


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: An Buachaill Caol Dubh
Date: 17 Oct 06 - 01:33 PM

Ronald Stevenson set Hugh MacDiarmid's "Better ae gowden lyric".

And, re. original posting, WBY based his "Salley Gardens" (Irish "Saile", a willow) on two lines he remembered of a traditional song sung by a serving-woman (well, he was of the Anglo-Irish Ascendancy). There's one song, I think "Lorgaigh Streams" from the Co Donegal, with lines in it about taking Love aisy, as the leaves grow on the trees (by far the best part of the Yeats poem, anyway). Herbert Hughes set it to "The Maids of Mourne Shore", but in one of his Volumes "Irish Country Songs" he mentions with approval a variant of this apparently made by some young Irish farmer/ploughboy and sung to the Yeats words; as far's I recall HH gave the notation.


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Georgiansilver
Date: 17 Oct 06 - 02:26 PM

If you want to set poems to songs...try John Masefield...great stuff and all you have to do is make a tune......
Best wishes, Mike.


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Joe_F
Date: 17 Oct 06 - 08:49 PM

Weirdly, *I* set "So We'll Go No More a-Roving" to music while I was in highschool. However, the tune is unsingable, having a range of two octaves. Do you suppose there is a category of "closet songs", on the analogy of closet drama?


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: The Walrus
Date: 18 Oct 06 - 05:48 AM

Kipling has been mentioned several times:-

I have a CD with a 1919 recording of "Recessional" sung at a Peace Thanksgiving service (at one of the Cathedrals), the tune is that of the hymn "For Those in Peril On The Sea".

"Gethsemene" can be sung to the Easter hymn "There is a Green Hill"
"Tommy" fits to "Rising of the Moon"

W


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: mustradclub
Date: 18 Oct 06 - 06:06 AM

Dont know if its already been mentioned but surely one of the best is Patrick Kavanagh's poem Raglan Road which was set to the tune for

Dawning of the Day


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: freda underhill
Date: 03 Nov 06 - 08:10 AM

Chris Kempster is an Australian songwriter who set many of Henry Lawson's poems to music. A CD of his songs has just been published, and some of the songs can be heard here...


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: GUEST,JimP
Date: 03 Nov 06 - 08:44 AM

Here's a folk-scare era album of poetry to Kingston Trio-esque settings:

The Three Ds

While painfully earnest (Crayon Box), I quite like several of these. I especially like the Gunga Din setting.

As for songs set to other tunes, ever try the words to the Gilligan's Island theme to the tune of Mary Ellen Carter. Hey, they're both about shipwrecks . . .


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: MartinRyan
Date: 03 Nov 06 - 11:19 AM

A propos of all this:

Stan Hugill, in "Shanties from the Seven Seas" prints an anonymous poem called Seafarers which he says was well known to sailors, who sang it to "Can't Ye Dance the Polka". I've never heard it sung - and find as I read it that another tune ,"Barrack Street" , keeps coming into my head! With a few kicks here and there, it seems to fit well.

Any of you shantymen any experience of the song? I'm tempted to have a go.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Rowan
Date: 03 Nov 06 - 08:50 PM

"The pub with no beer" as a song became famous (infamous?) in the 60s but followed the theme and many of the words of a poem with the same name published in the North Queensland Gazette in January of either 1941 or 1944, from faulty memory and without supporting documentation.

In the thread on recitations I recently included the text(s) of an item ("To Morrow") that appears to have started as a poem, been converted into a song, and since been transformed into a recitation by Keith McKenry.

Cathy O'Sullivan has also recorded a Lawson poem about drilling for artesian water into a great song; unfortunately I can't remember the title of either the poem or her record but I think she is responsible for the tune.

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Haruo
Date: 04 Nov 06 - 03:41 PM

The Mennonite Hymnal: A Worship Book has a poem by Anne Bradstreet (17th century Massachusetts, Colonial America's first woman poet) set as a hymn, and Christian Worship (Northern Baptist/Disciples, 1941) sets a text by Vachel Lindsay. Not sure if these are "common" poems. I know I've heard Longfellow's "Midnight Ride of Paul Revere" sung, have sung it myself years ago, don't quite recall the tune.

Haruo


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: emjay
Date: 04 Nov 06 - 04:08 PM

Danny Doyle sang The Highwayman
Burl Ives did The Wandering of Old Aengus
Leonard Warren did a whole album of Kipling song/poems -- I think the album was called Rolling Down to Rio and was recorded in the 50s.
The Irish Rovers did Winken, Blinken, and Nod.
I have all of these on old lps, at least 20 years old, and some 50 years old, and remember them because I recently copied them to cds.


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Susanne (skw)
Date: 05 Nov 06 - 08:57 PM

Not 'common' in any sense, but Edwin Brock's 'Five Ways To Kill A Man' was adapted by Iain MacKintosh for the tune of 'Ye Jacobites By Name'. Iain recorded it on 'Gentle Persuasion' (1988). Chilling!


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 06 Nov 06 - 07:09 PM

"To Anachreon In Heaven"... The tune appears to have been a collaborative effort by members of the society. It's been claimed that it's a Carolan tune.

That's quite credible - it's a good enough tune, and it has that kind of feeling about it. But I don't know if there's any evidence for the claim.
........................
As pointed out, lots of settings of Kipling songs prior to Peter Bellamy - but I'd say his tunes knocked the rest into a cocked hat, and felt uncannily right.


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: oldhippie
Date: 23 Nov 06 - 11:35 AM

What about this poem? Anyone know if its been set to music?

Before there were pineapples, peaches, and plums
The dog and the cat were companions and chums
They lived in a highly respectable grotto
Where "God Bless Our Home" was their favorite motto

The dog had a parchment, a parchment had he
Proclaiming his right to be happy and free
The charter was signed by the patriach Noah
And witnessed in form by the goat and the boa

The dog went a-hunting on Mount Arrarat
The parchment he left in care of the cat
His trust in the cat was complete and abiding
The dog then as ever was much too confiding

The cat who was always a rover in soul
Grew bored with the cavern and went out for a stroll
Beguiled by the songs of the birds in the bowers
He ambled and rambled for hours and hours

Then out from the crannies the mouse people crept
And lunched on the parchment the puss should have kept
They flocked with their children, their nephews and nieces
They shredded the charter and ate up the pieces

When home came the dog at the end of the day
The last of his freedom was whisking away
He leaped!, But the tails disappeared in a flicker
The dog may be quick but the mouse folk are quicker

When home strolled the cat as the twilight drew dim
The dog paid the utmost attention to him
The cat who at climbing was always a leader
Escaped by a whisker and ran up a cedar

So seeking his vengeance and justly at that
The dog through the ages still chases the cat
The cat with equivalent justification
Has chosen the mouse as his favorite ration


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: GUEST,Peter Taylor
Date: 23 Nov 06 - 12:11 PM

How common do you want to be? I have an LP by Paul McNeill on which he sings The Nursery Rhyme of Innocence and Experience, a poem by Charles Causeley set to music by Tony Cullen. Most of Martyn Wyndham-Read's discs have at least one poem on. My favourite is his setting of The Sailor Home from the Sea, a poem by Dorothy Hewitt, but there's also Andy's gone with Cattle, Harry the Drover, Reedy River, Water Lily, all by Henry Lawson. In fact most of Emu Plains is poems set to music, and there are lots more, including, on Beyond the Red Horizon, Martyn's setting of Silence and Tears, a poem by Byron which he decided was miserable enough to make a great folk-song.


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Jill
Date: 23 Nov 06 - 06:13 PM

I set Henry Lawson's WWI poem, The Route March, to music: it's recorded on my album The King's Well.

Of course, Robert Burns set many of his verses to traditional tunes. There are umpteen recordings of these -- take your pick.

Also poems by Sir Walter Scott. E.g., Jock O'Hazeldean is half trad., and half his -- there are recordings by Alex Campbell and Priscilla Herdman.
Then there's Violet Jacob's wonderful poem The Wild Geese Flee, which Jim Reid put to music: he sings it on one of his albums, and so does Cilla Fisher.

Another Scots poet, Lady John Scott (Alicia Spottiswoode) set her own poems to music; but my favourite of these is one that Archie Fisher sings (possibly his own tune?): Ettrick. On his album with Garnet Rogers, Off the Map.

And then there's Lady Nairne: Jean Redpath (who has also recorded
many Burns poems/songs) has an entire album of these poems.

For Irish poems: there's The Gartan Mother's Lullaby -- which many recording artists seem to think has traditional words. T'ain't so! The lyrics are still under copyright: the poet was Joseph Campbell, and his son Simon (living in Ireland) holds the copyright.

Padraic Colum's poetry has also been set to music.

It's too late at night here (in Jerusalem) to think of any others, but I'm sure I'll think of more in the morning.

G'night!

Jill


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Stewie
Date: 23 Nov 06 - 06:53 PM

Hey Rowan,

That Lawson poem you mentioned re Cathie O'Sullivan is actually by Banjo Paterson. Fewer of his poems lend themselves to musical settings than Lawson's - shame on you for robbing the man of this one. The title of Cathie's record was 'Song of the Artesian Water' Larrikin LRF-047. Her setting of Lawson's 'The Teams' is also on the LP.

Regards, Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Haruo
Date: 23 Nov 06 - 09:34 PM

That dog-cat-and-mouse poem is pretty good. Who's it by? When and where? It should go well to any tune you might use for the Night before Christmas.

Haruo


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Rowan
Date: 24 Nov 06 - 01:56 AM

Thanks Stewie!
It's not often I'm right but I was wrong on this occasion.
You've reminded me that there are several Australian poems that Skreitch used to recite that several other have set to music, thinking that because they were Australian poems they must have been by Lawson or Paterson when they were by other (now forgotten) bush poets. When I get my books out of storage I'll be able to refresh my memories of them.

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: oldhippie
Date: 24 Nov 06 - 07:36 AM

Haruo,
no idea who the cat/dog/mouse poem is by, or its title - something my father used to read to us kids some 50 years ago.....perhaps someone here knows.


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: An Buachaill Caol Dubh
Date: 24 Nov 06 - 07:43 AM

Jill mentions "The Gartan Mother's Lullaby": I'd thought it the work of the same person who did "My Lagan Love", and I had the idea that this was "Seumas MacCathamoil" (?spelling), which would translate as "James" rather than "Joseph". Did he write under this name, or is that the name of the person who made the air?


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: GUEST,Mad Musix
Date: 28 Jan 07 - 01:47 PM

Hi people
Anyone got the words to hand of 2 poems by Hugh Lupton ... Bleary Winter, and Mari Lwyd ...

ATB
Norm


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: GUEST,Mad musix
Date: 28 Jan 07 - 04:34 PM

On 2nd thoughts, looking back, perhaps they aren't "commom poems". So, sorry to barge in folks ... I'll do a new thread

Byee
Norm


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: GUEST, still docked
Date: 29 Jan 07 - 01:25 PM

I've grown to like Charles Hubert Hastings Parry's musical setting of Tennyson's "Crossing the Bar," which I found at ingeb.org, although I haven't heard a performance or record of it. It may sound too Edwardian for some.


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Stewart
Date: 29 Jan 07 - 02:01 PM

Here's a poem by John E. M. Sumner as collected by Hugh Brown ("All I can recall is an older gentleman sent me a copy from the Liverpool area some time back when I was searching for "tree" info on my grandfather (also from that area). I would think Mr Sumner is probably from that area."). It's a lovely poem, which I have set to music here

LIVERPOOL BAY – John E. M. Sumner

The strong salt winds at Liverpool
That sweep across the Bay
Once brought the great proud ships of old
With teak from Mandalay,
With bars of gold from lands untold,
With cloves from Zanzibar,
With tea and jute from Chittagong
And rubber from Para;
Trim figurehead and snowy sail,
Tall mast and taper'd spar,
A rhythmic shanty from the waist,
The smell of Stockholm tar.

Whilst yet the fog bells clang and drone
And eyes are tired and red
With peering over weather cloths
To see what looms ahead;
Or Summer shakes her train of gold
And dawn breaks slow, supreme,
With funnels red and funnels white
Reflected in the stream;
The times have changed on Merseyside,
The years have travell'd on,
And ugly ducklings plough and sheer
Where once there sailed a swan.

Safe anchored in a landlocked bay,
Washed by some river cool,
They lie at rest in fairer ports
Than even Liverpool;
Forgotten, garland'd with mist and fog
They drowse at anchor there,
Whilst crews of bearded sailormen
Patrol each deck and stare;
Borne faintly on an eerie wind
There goes a bosun's call,
Scraping as dim yards come around,
The clacking of a pall.

Then idly, these tall ships will turn
And hearken to the breeze
That whispers in the ghostly shrouds
Of days remote from these;
Remembering weeks of driving sleet
And high seas round the Horn,
And little islands, silver rimmed,
Where mollymawks are born;
Recalling long, cool, fragrant nights
Beneath a Southern moon;
The Rio Grande or Shenandoah
To a concertinas tune.

Yet often, just before the dawn,
They see in dreams afar
The glimmer of the Crosby Light
And rain across the Bar.

Cheers, S. in Seattle


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Songster Bob
Date: 29 Jan 07 - 02:43 PM

I seem to be one of four folkies and one classical composer who have set Arthur O'Shaunessy's "Ode" to a tune. Elgar did it in 1912, so he beats out Bob Zentz, Lorraine Lee Hammond, Jake Walton and me when it comes to being early in the game.

But who wouldn't want to sing something that starts out,

"We are the music-makers,
We are dreamers of dreams"?

I don't know of any recordings of Bob's, Lorraine's or my setting of it, but Jake Walton did record his. Elgar, who knows? It's a choral piece and there are probably any number of obscure recordings of same.

Someone up-thread said that "Drink to Me Only" comes from Bing Crosby. That would surprise Geo. Washington and his contemporaries, who knew the song pretty well, I'm told.


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: GUEST, still docked
Date: 29 Jan 07 - 03:30 PM

That's a splendid poem, Stewart. I wish my father were still alive so that I could read it to him. Thank you.


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: GUEST, still docked
Date: 29 Jan 07 - 04:18 PM

And I had thought "movers and shakers" to be a recent expression, Songster Bob.


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Haruo
Date: 30 Jan 07 - 01:38 AM

Speaking of Tennyson's Crossing the Bar set by Parry, Parry's most famous such setting is doubtless Blake's "Jerusalem".

Haruo


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: DriveForever
Date: 31 Jan 07 - 12:45 AM

One of my favorite's is Joni Mitchell's "Slouching Towards Bethlehem"
adaptation of W.B. Yeats poem.


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Leadfingers
Date: 31 Jan 07 - 04:52 AM

Just had a scan through , and am surprised to NOT see any Tolkein in here !
Donald Swann set all of 'Tales of Tom Bombadil' and recorded them , with most of Tolkein's 'Elvish' poems -IN ELVISH on an old ARGO LP .


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Subject: RE: Common poems set to music
From: Leadfingers
Date: 31 Jan 07 - 04:53 AM

Which brings us nicely to 100 posts


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