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Lyr Add: I'll Hang my Harp

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THE SARACEN


Related thread:
Lyr Req: I'll Hang My Harp on a Willow Tree (Bayly (13)


CET 10 Sep 06 - 05:42 PM
John MacKenzie 10 Sep 06 - 05:48 PM
Malcolm Douglas 10 Sep 06 - 06:29 PM
GUEST,CET 10 Sep 06 - 07:38 PM
GUEST 11 Sep 06 - 04:29 AM
John MacKenzie 11 Sep 06 - 04:40 AM
Malcolm Douglas 11 Sep 06 - 09:31 AM
GUEST,thurg 11 Sep 06 - 11:49 PM
Kaleea 12 Sep 06 - 02:05 AM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 12 Sep 06 - 07:53 AM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 12 Sep 06 - 01:46 PM
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Subject: Lyr Add: I'LL HANG MY HARP (from Pamela Morgan)
From: CET
Date: 10 Sep 06 - 05:42 PM

This is from Pamela Morgan's CD, "Ancestral Songs". The liner notes describe how she learned the song from two brothers on Fogo Island. Does anybody know the origin of this song? From the style, I would guess it's from the late nineteenth or early twentieth century. She sings it beautifully as she does all the others on the CD.

I'll hang my harp on a willow tree
I'm off to the war again
My peaceful home holds no charms for me
Nor the battlefield no pain

The lady I love she will soon be a bride
With a diadem on her brow
Oh, why did she flatter my boyish pride?
She's going to leave me now

She took me away from my warlike lord
She gave me a silken suit
I thought no more of my master's sword
But played with my lady's lute

She seemed to think me a boy above
Her pages of low degree
But if I had loved with a boyish
It would have been better for me

I'll hide in my breast every selfish care
I'll flush my cheeks with wine
And when smiles await the bridal pair
I'll hasten to give them mine

I'll laugh and I'll sing though my heart may bleed
I'll walk in the festive train
And if I survive, I'll mount my steed
And off to the war again

One golden tress of her hair I'll twine
In my helmet's sable plume
Then on the fields of Palestine
I'll seek an early doom

And if by the Saracen's hand I fall
'Midst the noble and the brave
A tear from the lady I love is all
I'll ask for a warrior's grave


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: I'll Hang my Harp
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 10 Sep 06 - 05:48 PM

Edmund I found this looks pretty early to me. Tavern in the Town is the only other song I know with a line about 'Hanging my harp [heart?] on the weeping willow tree'
Giok


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: I'll Hang my Harp
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 10 Sep 06 - 06:29 PM

For an old posting of this song here (1976), see thread  Unknown, 'to me anyway' song from crusades

The text was harvested for the DT, and can be seen at  THE SARACEN

Both can be found easily enough via the onsite search engine. Not added to the DT entry so far is the information, added to the discussion in 2001, that the song was written by the prolific Thomas Haynes Bayly in the first half of the 19th century.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: I'll Hang my Harp
From: GUEST,CET
Date: 10 Sep 06 - 07:38 PM

Many thanks, Giok and Malcolm. And thanks to Jim Dixon for doing all that research in 2001. I particularly enjoyed finding the University of South Carolina's music library website.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: I'll Hang my Harp
From: GUEST
Date: 11 Sep 06 - 04:29 AM

Norfolk traditional singer Walter Pardon sang it - he leaned it from an uncle and thought it to be Victorian - he was always very accurate in dating his songs
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: I'll Hang my Harp
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 11 Sep 06 - 04:40 AM

I wonder if the hanging a harp in a tree, willow, weeping or otherwise is derived from the story of the Greek god of the wind Aeolus.
There is an instrument played only by the wind called an Aeolian Harp info on site here . Poem by Samuel Taylor Coleridge here.
Giok


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: I'll Hang my Harp
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 11 Sep 06 - 09:31 AM

I should think it's a Biblical rather than Classical reference.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: I'll Hang my Harp
From: GUEST,thurg
Date: 11 Sep 06 - 11:49 PM

Please elaborate on the biblical reference ...


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: I'll Hang my Harp
From: Kaleea
Date: 12 Sep 06 - 02:05 AM

As I recall, an actual Greek Aeolian Harp which I once saw was as tall as me--about 5 feet--& had something like a dozen strings of differing gauges which were tuned to the same note. It's been so many years back that I can no longer recall which note. The wind going across the strings caused the strings to sound-vibrate-creating a fabulous sound, but the overtones were magnificent, and amazing!

I ran into a fellow harper at a renfair once. Her harp was a small, freestanding lever harp. The stiff breeze blowing about that day vibrated her harpstrings & made quite a lovely sound.
In the "church modes," aeolian is the mode, or scale, which sounds like the scale which you hear when you play all of the white keys on a piano from beginning and ending with A, aka, A natural minor. It might be interesting to go back in time & be a fly on the wall to find out why the original person, way back whenever, chose one of the wind gods, Aeolus, Keeper of the Winds, for the natural minor.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: I'll Hang my Harp
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 12 Sep 06 - 07:53 AM

Psalms 137:

1.
By the rivers of Babylon, there we sat down, yea, we wept, when we remembered Zion.

2.
We hanged our harps upon the willows in the midst thereof.

3.
For there they that carried us away captive required of us a song; and they that wasted us required of us mirth, saying, Sing us one of the songs of Zion.

4.
How shall we sing the Lord's song in a strange land?



Mick


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: I'll Hang my Harp
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 12 Sep 06 - 01:46 PM

Jim Dixon (if you're following this)

Re your attribution to Bayly in the other thread, where did that come from? All the copies I've looked at have either no attribution or only an arranger; I can't find a copy atrributed to Bayly.

Mick


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