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Request: En Roulant Ma Boule


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I'd like to figure out an Anglo arrangement for the French-Canadian voyageur song "En Roulant Ma Boule". I was inspired by the recording that is accompanied with an accordion, so it seems plausible to arrange for a concertina as well.

 

Here's a transcription of the melody in ABC, with some guitar chords that I got from the internet. Unfortunately, the chords don't sound that good to me (at least when played with back via a MIDI player with a concertina sound font), but I'm not competent to figure out what's wrong. The accordion player in the recording doesn't seem to be doing normal oom-pah accompaniment anyways.

 

X:1
T:En Roulant Ma Boule
L:1/8
M:6/8
K:D
"D" f2 e d2 A | "G" BAB "D" A3 | "D" f2 e d2 A | "A7" (B2 c) "D" d3 |
"D" f2 e d2 A | "G" BAB "D" A3 | "D" f2 e d2 A | "A7" (B2 c) "D" d2 A |
"D" d2 e d2 A | "G" B2 B "D" A3 | "D" d2 e d2 A | "G" B3 "D" A2 A |
"D" d2 e d2 A | "G" B2 B "D" A3 | "D" d2 e d2 A | "G" B3 "D" A2 A |
"D" d2 d "A7" e2 e | "D" f2 d "A7" e2 e | "D" f2 d "A7" e2 e | "D" fed "A7" e3 |
"D" f2 e d2 A | "G" BAB "D" A3 | "D" f2 e d2 A | "A7" (B2 c) "D" d3 |]

 

 

Edited by Owen Anderson
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I don't have a helpful response, but I remember singing this song in elementary school music in Virginia 45 or so years ago.  Haven't heard it since.

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On 3/12/2022 at 2:38 AM, Owen Anderson said:

Unfortunately, the chords don't sound that good to me (at least when played with back via a MIDI player with a concertina sound font), but I'm not competent to figure out what's wrong.

 

The chords are OK. They aren’t the most imaginative, but none of them are in any way “wrong.” Perhaps what sounds awkward in your MIDI playback is the moment where the A7 chord in measures 4, 8 and 24 exists over the passing B before the chord tone, C#, appears a moment later. I suspect this would sound fine if you heard it played by an organic musician on a physical instrument.

 

If you want to fix the chords so they’re a little more interesting and also avoid the momentary dissonance mentioned above, try this:

 

In measures 2, 3, 5, 6, 9, 11, 13, 15, 17, 18, 21 and 22 put D/F# for the chord in the 2nd half of the measure, and in measures 4, 8 and 24 Change the A7 chord to a G, followed by a quick A7 over the C# (or leave the A7 chord out entirely, treating the C# as a dissonant passing tone while the chords go from G to D).

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On 3/12/2022 at 7:38 AM, Owen Anderson said:

I'd like to figure out an Anglo arrangement for the French-Canadian voyageur song "En Roulant Ma Boule". I was inspired by the recording that is accompanied with an accordion, so it seems plausible to arrange for a concertina as well. etc...

Nice. I found a score (in C) plus the words here.

Edited by lachenal74693
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