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Uptempo Folk Songs

Azizi 09 Jan 07 - 08:38 PM
Azizi 09 Jan 07 - 08:42 PM
DeeRod 09 Jan 07 - 08:45 PM
wysiwyg 09 Jan 07 - 09:19 PM
Leadfingers 09 Jan 07 - 09:31 PM
Jack Campin 09 Jan 07 - 09:47 PM
Rabbi-Sol 09 Jan 07 - 10:30 PM
Amos 09 Jan 07 - 11:48 PM
Bert 10 Jan 07 - 12:41 AM
Cluin 10 Jan 07 - 12:44 AM
stallion 10 Jan 07 - 03:17 AM
GUEST 10 Jan 07 - 03:46 AM
Richard Bridge 10 Jan 07 - 07:23 AM
Scoville 10 Jan 07 - 11:10 AM
Scrump 10 Jan 07 - 11:34 AM
McGrath of Harlow 10 Jan 07 - 01:22 PM
Richard Bridge 10 Jan 07 - 04:44 PM
Uncle_DaveO 10 Jan 07 - 04:46 PM
Rowan 10 Jan 07 - 05:11 PM
Janice in NJ 11 Jan 07 - 11:38 AM
The Sandman 11 Jan 07 - 04:33 PM
Bill D 11 Jan 07 - 04:53 PM
GUEST,Frank Hamilton 11 Jan 07 - 04:59 PM
jacqui.c 11 Jan 07 - 05:06 PM
Cluin 11 Jan 07 - 08:19 PM
Willa 12 Jan 07 - 12:28 PM
The Sandman 12 Jan 07 - 12:34 PM
GUEST 12 Jan 07 - 02:38 PM
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Subject: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: Azizi
Date: 09 Jan 07 - 08:38 PM

No disrespect at all intended, but somehow, I have this idea of European and European American folk songs as being slow or moderate in tempo, with very little percussive features.

Is this true?

If you were making a list of uptempo, percussive [is this the same thing?] folk songs of European origin or European American origin or otherwise, which songs would you list?

Thanks for your input.


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: Azizi
Date: 09 Jan 07 - 08:42 PM

I neglected to say to please use which ever definition of folk music that suits you.

Best wishes,

Azizi


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: DeeRod
Date: 09 Jan 07 - 08:45 PM

Having led an FSGW Get-a-way workshop on swashbuckling songs I suggest you start with the first Clancy Bros., and Dubliner's records
I have a few million more suggestions too, but that should whet the appetite. Sorry, regretably no polkas.


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: wysiwyg
Date: 09 Jan 07 - 09:19 PM

Oldtime tends to be pretty uptempo.

Uptempo and percussive are NOT the same thing, but what ultimately makes a tune uptempo is largely a question of how one chooses to interpret it-- so the list would be limited only by one's personal performance choices. Also, sung music will tend to be less percussive than fiddle tunes and other dance-oriented music.

~S~


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: Leadfingers
Date: 09 Jan 07 - 09:31 PM

A lot of polkas in English and Irish Dance and of course reels and jigs as well !
Some few thousand fairly up tempo songs in all our traditions , despite the slow ballads ! Even some of the newer fellows dont just write dreary navel gazing songs !


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: Jack Campin
Date: 09 Jan 07 - 09:47 PM

"Mary Mack".


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: Rabbi-Sol
Date: 09 Jan 07 - 10:30 PM

Many songs by "The Weavers" were up tempo. For example "The Rock Island Line".

Percussion and accoustic music somehow do not mix, just like oil and water.

                                           SOL ZELLER


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: Amos
Date: 09 Jan 07 - 11:48 PM

Big Ball in Boston
Rolling in My Sweet Baby's Arms
Deep Water Blues
Mule Skinner Blues
Don't Let Your Deal Go Down
Blow, Ye Winds in the Morning

Dozens of Irish songs, fishing songs, fighting songs, rebel songs, cowboys songs, railroad songs come to mind in a small flood which are op-tempo.

A


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: Bert
Date: 10 Jan 07 - 12:41 AM

Just a few for starters...

Lincolnshire poacher
Ilkley Moor Bah't 'at.
Uncle Tom Cobley
Begone Dull Care
The Country Vicar
The Schoolboy version of "One Man Went to Mow"
Nobby Hall
The Crawdad Song


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: Cluin
Date: 10 Jan 07 - 12:44 AM

The Rocky Road to Dublin.
Bog in the Valley-O


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: stallion
Date: 10 Jan 07 - 03:17 AM

I agree with WYSIWG on interpretation, sea shanties tend to be linked to the particular job in hand and the tempo that fits, we refer, effectionately, to the ones we do as "hamster wheel" shanties which are a tad up tempo. Also, there are examples of folk songs whose accompaniment is only the Bodran (ok I am not trying to spell it, I sing ok), see the Corries et al.


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: GUEST
Date: 10 Jan 07 - 03:46 AM

There are plenty of up-tempo songs here; unfortunately there is a tendency among singers today to slow them down a funereal pace (I blame the Wetersons, whose aim in life appeared to be to make all traditional songs sound the same).
The result is that you can often leave a club or a session with the impression that you have only heard one song all night - lasting 2 hours.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 10 Jan 07 - 07:23 AM

Funny that, I tend to speed many up - like Maui which I play as fast as I can do that tricky chord run Em D G B Em in the middle, and Gentlemen of High Renown which has had me accused of "You've been jazzing it up again".

High Barbary can be quite horrid to play at the speed I like it.


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: Scoville
Date: 10 Jan 07 - 11:10 AM

The following are mostly of European-American and/or much-diluted African-American origin and are, at least in my experience, usually moderate-to-fast tempo. Not all of them are particularly old, though (but then we're not that old a country, are we?). It's a bit of an odd question, though, because the distinctions between "singing" songs, dance tunes, fife tunes, etc. get blurry very fast, as does the "ancestry" of many songs, since many "white" folk tunes started out as published sheet music or were restructured from African-American tunes (Old Joe Clark, Little Liza Jane, etc.).

And I'll warn you that my experience is mainly in string-band music, which is less likely to be sung and more likely to be played very fast, so I don't think folk music is particularly slow. From what I know of the ballads that are most near older British tradition (Barbara Allan, Barkshire Tragedy/Two Sisters, Lord Bateman, Old Bangum, etc.), yes, they do appear to be in the slower-to-moderate range, but it's hard to sing intelligibly much faster than that, and I don't know how British our versions of these still are.

Dance tunes that are also commonly sung:
Sugar in the Gourd
Cotton-Eyed Joe
Barlow Knife
Way Down on the Old Plank Road
Train on the Island
Ida Red
Sally Anne
Wildwood Flower (ca. 1859--does that still count?)
Dixie (ca. 1858. Sometimes played as a dirge, yes, but sounds better fast)
Kingdom Coming (Year of Jubilo, probably ca. 1866)
Fall on my Knees
Danced All Night With a Bottle in my Hand
Paddy, Won't You Drink Some Cider?
Cluck, Old Hen
Waterbound/Stay All Night

Songs (not generally danced-to):
Wild Bill Jones
Been All Around This World (Hang Me, Oh, Hang Me)
Bring the Traitors In
Girl Behind the Bar (West-Side Tavern)
Greenback Dollar (similar to Gold Watch & Chain)
Johnson Boys
Little Sadie
Old Bangum (the one about the killer hog)


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: Scrump
Date: 10 Jan 07 - 11:34 AM

I've sometimes found it interesting to sing a normally fast song more slowly and reflectively, or vice versa. It sometimes casts a different meaning on the lyrics. Sadly I can't think of a good example at present, but has anyone else noticed this?


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 10 Jan 07 - 01:22 PM

Rule of thumb is that stories are best told at a relatively leisurely pace, dancing is mostly done more uptempo; and this tends to apply in most cultures.

Plenty of exceptions in both cases, butb that's what "rule of thumb" implies.


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 10 Jan 07 - 04:44 PM

Compare "If you gotta make a fool of somebody" as done by Freddy and the Dreamers to the Bonnie Raitt version done at about half the speed, Scrump!


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 10 Jan 07 - 04:46 PM

Songs that immediately come to my mind:

The Old Chisholm Trail
The Next Big River (I'm bound to cross)
The Devil and the Farmer's Wife (aka The Farmer's Curst Wife)
Some Little Bug
Devilish Mary

Lots more there, if I had time to sit here and think a while, but I don't.

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: Rowan
Date: 10 Jan 07 - 05:11 PM

The following is a quick trawl through some (more or less 'European') songs. Some are up tempo IMO and others are more measured but I wouldn't call any of them "slow".   Some (eg the first listed) may seem "percussive" because of their use of particular words combined the usual tempo but I I think of percussion differently. I have a dim memory of a rtrack of a Five Hand Reel LP (?) with a Scottish side drummer playing solo that was almost as 'melodic' as many other tracks I've heard. Ditto a track of the bones played by the subset of musicians that had played with O'Riada at the Gaiety but who resisted becoming part of the Chieftains; can't remember their name(s) now.
A proper cup of coffee
Apprentice Song
Battler's Ballad
CHICKEN ON A RAFT
Lazy Harry's
Old Dun Cow
Polly on the shore (Bowes et al)
RUBBER BAND
Sergeant Small
Sweeny Todd the Demon Barber
Sydney Harbour Ferry
THE BLACKLEG MINER
The Miner
The Poison Train
Wee pot stove

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: Janice in NJ
Date: 11 Jan 07 - 11:38 AM

Keep My Skillet Good and Greasy
Rock About My Saro Jane
Boil Them Cabbage Down
Groundhog
Devilish Mary
Little Maggie
Darling Corey
Buffalo Gals
Sail Away, Ladies
If I Had My Way (Sampson)
Down on Penny's Farm
The Ox Driver's Song
Red Apple Juice
Risselty Rosselty


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: The Sandman
Date: 11 Jan 07 - 04:33 PM

good god, i,m agreeing with jim carroll again.
Buffalo skinners,Ball of yarn,game of all fours,Boys of Killybegs,John Blunt, Old woman from wexford,Murshem gherkin,Blarney roses.


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: Bill D
Date: 11 Jan 07 - 04:53 PM

Some songs are just not meant to be fast...and I have heard FAR too many things speeded up for some purpose I just don't comprehend. Just to cram more into a space? For adrenaline? To prove you can play fast? .....I dunno.

Take the song "Shawnee Town", which is about poleing and rowing a boat....it truly suffers at Bluegrass tempo...
   ...and pumping shanties! They NEED a slow tempo to get the feel of what was going on.

There are cute 'patter' songs which are fun to zip thru, but mercy! It ain't a race!


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: GUEST,Frank Hamilton
Date: 11 Jan 07 - 04:59 PM

American folk songs depend on the area in which they were originated. As illustrated above, the dance tunes of the Appalachians tend to have lyrics, some used for dancer's calls and some to suggest humorous content. Many of these songs were crossed-over from the Minstrel Show tradition which was very popular in the South due to the touring companies of "Uncle Tom's Cabin". The tunes were widely used as dance tunes in "hoe-downs" or "set-runnings". Some of the more lugubrious ballads found themselves transformed into bowlderized versions that had humorous takes on serious subjects. The five-string banjo accompanied many of the songs from the earlier Minstrel Show tradition. Some of the songs were tongue-twisters with nonsense syllables that might have suggested Gaelic phrases as forebears. A lot of "bob-a-link-a-die-do's" in choruses are a case in point. "King-kong-kitchy cant'cha tie me O" etc.

Many popular songs from the dance tradition in African-American blues party songs are uptempo and humorous such as "Diddy Wah Diddy" and Georgia Tom's "Tight Like That".
Leadbelly had a number of these tunes in his repitiore. "Rock Island Line", "The Grey Goose", "Fannin' Street" and "You Can't Lose-a Me Charlie" come to mind.

The notion of the ballad singer singing lugubrious songs is probably a recent one due to the image of the Joan Baez followers languishing in the coffee-houses of the 60's. This was an exagerration of the "ballad" rather than representative of the American folk tradition.

Some uptempo folk songs to consider:

"Come on girls we're going to Boston"
"Fod"
"Springfield Mountain"
"Hoosen Johnny" (var. of "The Old Grey Mare"
"Lynchburg Town"
"Boil Them Cabbages Down"
"Poor Liza Jane"
"Goin' Down to Cripple Creek"
"Keep My Skillet Good and Greasy"
"I Don't Lie, Buddy" (Lead and Josh)
"Ten Nights Drunk"
"Ole Rueben".."Train 45"
"Cindy" "Old Joe Clark"
"Train on the Island"
"Eggs and Marrowbone"
"Shady Grove"
"Poor Howard's Dead and Gone"
"Goin' Down to Cairo (Kay-ro)
"Born About Ten Thousand Years Ago"
"Sourwood Mountain"
"Jubilee"
"Year of Jubilo"
"Bowlin' Green"

and many more.

Frank


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: jacqui.c
Date: 11 Jan 07 - 05:06 PM

Landlord Fill the Flowing Bowl

Ye Jacobites By Name


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: Cluin
Date: 11 Jan 07 - 08:19 PM

Tzena Tzena


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: Willa
Date: 12 Jan 07 - 12:28 PM

Brisk Young Widow, Jeannie Johnson, One Eyed Cook, Sovay, I Live Not Where I Love, Linden Lea


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: The Sandman
Date: 12 Jan 07 - 12:34 PM

I live not whereI love, up tempo,NO Its modereato[at the fastest], the lyrics are reflective.


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Subject: RE: Uptempo Folk Songs
From: GUEST
Date: 12 Jan 07 - 02:38 PM

Says the man who also lists "Murshem gherkin"!


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