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Jim Besser

Poll: Tune Of The Month For December, 2014

Poll: TOTM December, 2014  

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Wow: the end of the year. Where did the time go? Guess time really flies when you're playing a concertina. We've done a lot of fun tunes in 2014; here's hoping we keep it going in 2015!
To get you in the mood, here’s a selection of tunes from different genres; I hope you find one that catches your fancy.
Classical: In the Bleak Midwinter
How about some Gustav Holst?
According to Wikipedia, "In the Bleak Midwinter" is a Christmas carol based on a poem by the English poet Christina Rossetti written before 1872 in response to a request from the magazine Scribner's Monthly for a Christmas poem.[1] It was published posthumously in Rossetti's Poetic Works in 1904. The poem became a Christmas carol after it appeared in The English Hymnal in 1906 with a setting by Gustav Holst.
Here’s a sublime choral version. Far less sublime is this version I did last year for the December Theme of the Month on Anglo.
Pop: Let it Snow
This is a jolly pop standard from 1945, written by lyricist Sammy Cahn and composer Jule Styne. According to Wikipedia, it’s one of the best selling songs of all times, and it’s been covered by countless artists.
Last year I was playing in a holiday parade and the tuba player started playing this jaunty, swingy little tune as we marched. "Hey, this is really fun," I thought at the time. There's lots you can do with it. Learn it, and become the big hit at your next holiday party!
And I couldn’t resist posting this awesomely bizarre rendition.
English: Abbott’s Bromley Horn Dance.
I’ve had multiple requests requests to include this as a TOTM option. It's the tune most associated with the haunting Abbott's Bromley Horn Dance, which is a yearly feature of the Christmas Revels programs in the United States, and performed during December by many Morris dance teams.
But in the UK town where it originated many centuries ago these days the ritual dance is performed in September, using a number of different tunes, including Yankee Doodle and Pop Goes the Weasel. I've also heard the tune played as a fast jig for contra dances.
It's a wonderful, evocative tune good at any season, but for many of us it conjures up misty, mystical winter evenings.
Read about it here and here, and see the dance and hear the tune on this video. And this one. Here it is on melodeon, without the distraction of dancers.
French: Bourrée d'Aurore Sand
I found this lively dance tune when I was searching for a cool klezmer tune to include in the TOTM poll and went to the YouTube channel of one of my favorite bands - the German group 17 Hippies, which performs a variety of Eastern European genres in a supercharged, fun style. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xh7onr2_EJY . But in looking at more videos and notation, I realized it's French.
Well, it's a bourree. DUH.
Here it is in its native habitat, so to speak. And this one: if you can figure out what this video is about, let me know.
Maybe one of our c.net friends in France can elaborate on the tune's origins. Whatever they are, it's a fun tune and pretty easy.
That's it for December. Hope you find a tune that you want to learn, record, post and discuss!

 

Edited by Jim Besser

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Thanks for 17 Hippies, Jim! They're great! (though I must say, that this kind of music sounds very "fusion" with english lyrics).

If you like some cool Klezmer music with an energetic punch, you might find Polish band Klezmafour interesting https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FVDzrdourao or Neofarius Orchestra #249 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fW01C1FCV_A

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Seventeen Hippies rock, though I'd prefer to play it more trad.

Still, it's all fun.

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Please Note: Let it Snow may be subject to copyright, I have an abc file but message me for a copy as I don't want to post it here. If it's voted in as tune of the month the situation would require clarification.

 

X:1
T:In the Bleak Midwinter
R:March
C:Gustav Holst 1906
O:Germany
Z:Paul Hardy's Xmas Tunebook 2012 (see www.paulhardy.net). Creative Commons cc by-nc-sa licenced.
M:4/4
L:1/4
Q:1/4=120
K:G
"G" B>c d B|"Em" A2 G z|"Am" A>B A E|"C" A2- "D" A z|"G" B>c d B|"Em" A2 G z|"C" A B "D7" A>G|"G" G4|
"C" c>B c d|e2 "Em" B2|"G" d B A G|"D" F3 z|"G" B>c d B|"Em" A2 G z|"C" A B "D" A>G|"G" G4|]
W:In the bleak midwinter frosty wind made moan,
W:Earth stood hard as iron, water like a stone;
W:Snow had fallen, snow on snow, snow on snow,
W:In the bleak midwinter, long a go.
W:
W:(Christina Rosetti, 1872)


X: 1
T: Abbots Bromley Horn Dance [Em]
N: From the Nottingham Music Database
S: EFDSS
M: 6/8
K: Em
e \
| "Em"B2e G2e | "Em"B2e E2G | "Am"FGA "Em"GAB \
|1,3 "B7"AGF "Em"G2 :|2,4 "B7"AGF "Em"E2 :| \
e \
| "Am"c2e cde | "Am"A2c ABc \
| "D"FGA "(Em)"GFE | DEF "Bm"B,2g |
| "Em"e2g efg | "Am"c2e cde \
| "G"dcB "D"AGF | "Em"E3 E2 |: \
A \
"Em"BcB "Am"c3 | "Em"BcB "Am"e3 | "Em"BcB "B7"AGF \
|1 "Em"G3 "B7"G2 :|2 "Em"E3 E2 |]


X:1
T:Bourrée dite Aurore Sand
R:Bourrée à 2 temps
Z:abc transcription Simon Wascher
N:please mail errors to: simon.wascher@chello.at
M:2/4
L:1/8
K:Gm
D|G3/2A/2 Bc|d3d|d3/2g/2 ^fg|d3d|e3/2d/2 cA|B3/2A/2 GB|A3/2G/2 AB|G3:|
| :D|d3/2c/2 Bc|d3/2c/2 Bc|d3/2c/2 de|d3/2c/2 Bc|d3/2c/2 Bc|d3/2c/2 Bc|d3/2c/2 BA|G:|

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Please Note: Let it Snow may be subject to copyright, I have an abc file but message me for a copy as I don't want to post it here. If it's voted in as tune of the month the situation would require clarification.

 

 

 

Thanks.

 

My plan, if this is chosen, is to provide a link to the score instead of posting it here.

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Thanks for 17 Hippies, Jim! They're great! (though I must say, that this kind of music sounds very "fusion" with english lyrics).

 

If you like some cool Klezmer music with an energetic punch, you might find Polish band Klezmafour interesting https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FVDzrdourao or Neofarius Orchestra #249 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fW01C1FCV_A

 

Thanks, those are both great. The Klezmafour video is really exotic.

ONe of the things I like about 17 Hippies is how they mix and match genres, and do it all with incredible energy.

 

I sort of think of them as a an Eastern European counterpart to BEllowhead: high energy, bring in numerous influences.

 

I like trad, but I also like fusion.

Edited by Jim Besser

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Re Bourree d'Aurore Sand, for those of us who don't get on with ABC notation and want the notes without cutting pasting etc, herewith a link to the notation

http://archive.folx.org/tune/bourree-2-temps/bourree-aurore-sand-934

Nice to see a classical piece. Shame that it's the "wrong" version of In the Bleak Midwinter. I've always been a devotee of the Harold Darke arrangement, and find the Holst one far too syrupy. All a matter of taste, I suppose -_-

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Nice to see a classical piece. Shame that it's the "wrong" version of In the Bleak Midwinter. I've always been a devotee of the Harold Darke arrangement, and find the Holst one far too syrupy. All a matter of taste, I suppose -_-

But isn't the point of Tune of the Month that we can take just the melody (the tune) and arrange it as we see fit?

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Re Bourree d'Aurore Sand, for those of us who don't get on with ABC notation and want the notes without cutting pasting etc, herewith a link to the notation

 

http://archive.folx.org/tune/bourree-2-temps/bourree-aurore-sand-934

 

Nice to see a classical piece. Shame that it's the "wrong" version of In the Bleak Midwinter. I've always been a devotee of the Harold Darke arrangement, and find the Holst one far too syrupy. All a matter of taste, I suppose -_-

Well, it is Holst's composition.......

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Eh? That's a rather puzzling comment , the meaning of which escapes me - a bit like saying that a book is a book?Christina Rossetti's poem was written in the 1870s, but not published until 1904. Holst's setting of the poem was the first one in 1906, but Harold Darke's arrangement of 1911 was actually voted Best Christmas carol by an international group of choirmasters and choral specialists in 2008. There are quite a few other settings of the poem, including one by Benjamin Britten and another by Bob Chilcott.

All of which is quite off topic .... sorry!

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Eh? That's a rather puzzling comment , the meaning of which escapes me - a bit like saying that a book is a book?Christina Rossetti's poem was written in the 1870s, but not published until 1904. Holst's setting of the poem was the first one in 1906, but Harold Darke's arrangement of 1911 was actually voted Best Christmas carol by an international group of choirmasters and choral specialists in 2008. There are quite a few other settings of the poem, including one by Benjamin Britten and another by Bob Chilcott.

 

All of which is quite off topic .... sorry!

 

Nah, not off topic, interesting!

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Re Bourree d'Aurore Sand, for those of us who don't get on with ABC notation and want the notes without cutting pasting etc, herewith a link to the notation

 

http://archive.folx.org/tune/bourree-2-temps/bourree-aurore-sand-934

 

Nice to see a classical piece. Shame that it's the "wrong" version of In the Bleak Midwinter. I've always been a devotee of the Harold Darke arrangement, and find the Holst one far too syrupy. All a matter of taste, I suppose -_-

Well, it is Holst's composition.......

 

 

 

Eh? That's a rather puzzling comment , the meaning of which escapes me - a bit like saying that a book is a book?Christina Rossetti's poem was written in the 1870s, but not published until 1904. Holst's setting of the poem was the first one in 1906, but Harold Darke's arrangement of 1911 was actually voted Best Christmas carol by an international group of choirmasters and choral specialists in 2008. There are quite a few other settings of the poem, including one by Benjamin Britten and another by Bob Chilcott.

 

All of which is quite off topic .... sorry!

 

I think the point was that however appealing Darke's arrangement may be, Holst invented the tune.

 

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Of course Mudcat has had a spirited discussion about In the Bleak Midwinter, very much along the lines of the discussion here, but MUCH longer:

 

http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=31533

 

About 1/3 the way down somebody posted an ABC of the Darke version:

 

X:1
T:In the Bleak Mid-winter
M:4/4
Q:1/4=120
K:G
B3Ad2B2|G4F4|E3FG2E2|D8|G3GB2G2|e4d4|B2A2d3G|
c8|B3Ad2G2|=F3EE4|G4c2E2|D8|G3AB2G2|G2A2B2c2|
d8|d6B2|G15/2||

 

The ending sounds pretty foxed to me, maybe somebody could correct it and then folks could choose which version to play?

 

Added:

 

I found this beautiful rendition on Youtube:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k3FwwnLvELw

 

which has a running score and from that score the last bar should be |G8|| rather than |G15/2||

 

A Youtube comment: "if you genuinely prefer this to the Holst, I seriously fear for your soul (and your ears)". This seems to cause dissent everywhere!

 

Here is a PDF score: http://www3.cpdl.org/wiki/images/9/9c/In_the_bleak_midwinter.pdf

 

Like most folks I am used to the Holst version, but I kind of like the surprises in the Darke version.

 

 

Edited by Don Taylor

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Like most folks I am used to the Holst version, but I kind of like the surprises in the Darke version.

 

So if it becomes December's TotM, how many of us will join the Darke side? B)

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Eh? That's a rather puzzling comment , the meaning of which escapes me - a bit like saying that a book is a book?Christina Rossetti's poem was written in the 1870s, but not published until 1904. Holst's setting of the poem was the first one in 1906, but Harold Darke's arrangement of 1911 was actually voted Best Christmas carol by an international group of choirmasters and choral specialists in 2008. There are quite a few other settings of the poem, including one by Benjamin Britten and another by Bob Chilcott.

 

Well, albeit being aware of the mere existence of other versions I hadn't heard or read any of them as yet. With a first glance at the Drake setting I come to seceral conclusions as follows:

 

1. Our tune (if chosen) would be a composition by Holst, which might be arranged or adapted ad lib.

 

2. Irene had mentioned another version first, then arrangement. It would be no problem to skip the Holst arrangement (if found to "syrupy" or whatever) and keep the tune he composed.

 

3. Complication: I really doubt that Drake's version could be referred to as a genuine new composition. At least the beginning relies heavily upon the signature notes by Holst.

 

4. I myself am not very fond of The Planets, and might dislike a "syrupy" arrangement here too, but find the mere tune beautiful, appealing, and kind of folky too. Not sure about what Drake did too it so far...

 

Best wishes - Wolf

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Like most folks I am used to the Holst version, but I kind of like the surprises in the Darke version.

 

So if it becomes December's TotM, how many of us will join the Darke side? B)

 

Not me, apparently... :D

 

(preferring the plain and simple here...)

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