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History of 'The Wind and Rain'?

04 Jul 99 - 01:50 PM (#92319)
Subject: History of 'The Wind and Rain'?
From: Mike

In a couple of movie versions of Shakespeare -- the Tempest and 12th Night, if I recall correctly -- the same song, with the refrain "Oh, the wind and rain" (or perhaps, "Oh, the Wind and The Rain") is used. I believe that I have heard a recording of a version of the Cruel Mother with this refrain replacing "The Greenwood side-e-o", but can't place it -- and I suspect that there may be other songs with the same refrain. Does anyone either know any songs with this refrain or have any specific information about the song used in the movies?

At least one of these movies was a Taylor/Burton version, and one of them (maybe the same one) had Ben Kingsley in it as the Fool -- I haven't seen them myself, so I'm a little fuzzy on th

04 Jul 99 - 05:05 PM (#92361)
Subject: RE: History of 'The Wind and Rain'?
From: rich r

The song is a version of "The Two Sisters", aka Child #10. Search the DT for "two sisters" or "wind and rain" comes up with several versions. There are a number of recorded versions. One of my favorites was by the Red Clay Ramblers.

rich r

04 Jul 99 - 06:37 PM (#92393)
Subject: RE: History of 'The Wind and Rain'?
From: dick greenhaus

I thnk that the Shakespearian one you're looking for is When That I Was a Little Tiny Boy in which ...the rain it raineth every day. No connection with the Two Sisters variant.

05 Jul 99 - 02:07 AM (#92470)
Subject: RE: History of 'The Wind and Rain'?

There is a song done by Kilby Snow whose refrain is "The Wind and the Rain". It tells the story of a two lovers who go out in a boat and the man kills the woman for refusing to mary him. It is another one of those stories where parts of the woman are made into a musical instrument. In this case a fiddle which will only play the tune "All the Wind and the Rain"

When sings it along with the autoharp, it is very effective. I think he claims to have learned it from his grandmother in N. Carolina.

It doesn't seem to bear any resemblance to the Elizabethean "Hail, Ho, the Wind and the Rain."


05 Jul 99 - 04:07 AM (#92498)
Subject: RE: History of 'The Wind and Rain'?
From: Murray on Salt Spring

The Shakespeare song is sung as an Epilogue to "Twelfth Night" by the Fool. The tune it goes to is traditional in the theatre [published several places, e.g. Chappell's Popular Music of the Olden Time, p. 225. Another verse (which is a parody, I expect) is sung by the Fool in "King Lear".[He that has a little tiny wit, / With a heigh ho! the wind and the rain, / Must make content with his fortunes fit, / For the rain it raineth every day.] - the refrain's occurrence in ballads will be after this time, I suppose, but I wouldn't be surprised to learn that Shakespeare was using a verse (or a tune) already well current in his time. The unique version with the refrain was collected in West Virginia in 1931 [in Bulletin of the Folk-Song Society of the North-East no. 12 (1937), p. 10.] BTW: Wooldridge's edition of Chappell (Old English Popular Music), 1893, doesn't give the tune, because as he rather snootily says it (like some other stuff) rests "upon no better authority than tradition". [Sic.]

05 Jul 99 - 05:38 AM (#92503)
Subject: RE: History of 'The Wind and Rain'?
From: Alan of Australia

Also seems to bear a strong resemblance to Bob Dylan's "Percy's Song".

05 Jul 99 - 10:26 AM (#92537)
Subject: RE: History of 'The Wind and Rain'?
From: bob schwarer

Sarah Gray & Ed Trickett do a version. Sandy probably knows what album it's on.

Bob S.

05 Jul 99 - 11:36 AM (#92553)
Subject: RE: History of 'The Wind and Rain'?
From: Chet W.

I do the version like the one by the Red Clay Ramblers, that starts "Two lovin' sisters went walkin' side by side", and after the murder the miller fishes out the body with his "long hook and line" and proceeds to make fiddle parts from the hair and finger bones. It was already such a grisly song, I was moved to add some verses in that vein, and every time we do the song more verses are improvised. Some examples:

He made a salad bowl from the top of her head....

He made a xylophone from her little rib cage....

He made an axe handle from her little femur bone....

He made a fine necklace from her pearly white teeth....

The possibilities are endless. Sometimes it does get out of hand. If you consult an anatomy book you could sing it all night.

I get perverse, Chet W.

05 Jul 99 - 11:46 AM (#92555)
Subject: RE: History of 'The Wind and Rain'?
From: rich r


You've gone and done what I've only though should be done to that song for years. Taking it over the top. I often wonder if songs of that type were originally meant to be satire, but became sereious (possibly because it was passed on by some banjo player who didn't get it ;-)). I may have to go and learn the song now with your "improvements"

rich r

05 Jul 99 - 12:23 PM (#92564)
Subject: RE: History of 'The Wind and Rain'?
From: Chet W.

Thanks Rich. Please post any good ones you come up with. Maybe we could do the same with some other songs? "I Gave my Love a Cherry" comes to mind.


05 Jul 99 - 12:40 PM (#92567)
Subject: RE: History of 'The Wind and Rain'?
From: jeffs

The two versions I've heard are the Garcia/Grisman and the Pentangle. The Pentangle rendition is really different and goes by the title "Cruel Sister". Still shows up as Child #10 though.