||Cello - Liner Notes
1. Bràigh Loch Iall (The Braes of Locheil)
I first heard this song on the Alan Lomax recordings made in the 1950s of Scottish folk music, sung by Mrs. Rena MacLean. This Gaelic love song can be found in several tune collections. The present arrangement places the Scottish loch somewhere on the road between Delhi and Narnia.
I shall go, why should I not?
To the pasture of the cows where a girl sings sweetly,
To the Braes of Locheil where the deer is belling…
Shelley whistle, oboe, harp
Barry cello, zither
Sources: World Library of Folk and Primitive Music, Vol. III, Alan Lomax (Rounder CD 1743); Three Streams Traditional Music of Scotland and Ireland, Distant Oaks (North Wind, 1998; www.distantoaks.com/nwr).
2. Aoibhneas Éilís Ní Cheallaigh (Elizabeth Kelly’s Delight)
Here’s a slip jig I learned from the pipe playing of Jared White. A fine traditional tune in a contemporary setting.
Barry cello, cittern, harmonium, pipe organ, finger cymbals
Sources: Three Streams Traditional Music of Scotland and Ireland, Distant Oaks (North Wind, 1998; www.distantoaks.com/nwr); The Long Long Note, Deiseal (Starc Recording Studios, Dublin, 1992).
3. Lochaber No More
I learned this tune from fiddler Alasdair Fraser. According to the historian Donal O’Sullivan, Irish harper Thomas Connellan (c.1640 - 1698) claimed the tune was his own, but it was universally referred to at the Belfast harp meeting of 1792 as being written by Myles O’Reilly (b. 1635) with the title “Limrick’s Lamentation.” According to O’Sullivan, O’Reilly “refashioned” the tune from one of a Scottish Highland origin. In 1724 the poet Allan Ramsey wrote the ballad “Farewell to Lochaber” based on O’Reilly’s melody. Three centuries later this melody is as poignant as ever.
Farewell to Lochaber, farewell to my Jean. Where heart some wi’ thee, I ha’e mony days been. ForLochaber no more. Lochaber no more. We’ll maybe return to Lochaber no more.
Barry cello, pipe organ
Source: The Life and Times of an Irish Harper, Donal O’Sullivan (Routledge and Kegan Paul, Ltd., London, 1958).
4. Old Heddon of Fawsley
Morris dances are ancient English ritual dances. They were believed to have evolved from a Moorish dance form called a moresca which was popular in the 15th century. Cecil Sharp believed Old Heddon to be a variant of the well known tune Country Gardens. The resemblance is certainly there.
Barry cello, percussion
Source: Folk - Dance Airs collected and arranged for the pianoforte, Cecil Sharp
(Novello and Company, Ltd., London, 1909).
5. O Ho The Pretty Chain
The American Shaker movement brought to this world a wealth of great melodies. This song, categorized as an “extra song” (not a dance tune, but a more reflective tune) is from the Shaker community at South Union, Kentucky.
O ho the pretty chain
That binds us all together
O ho its links are love
Thats wrought by faithful labor.
Shelley English horn
Neal mountain dulcimer
Source: The Shaker Spiritual, Daniel Patterson (Princeton University Press, New Jersey, 1979).
6. Gycklarpolskan av Peter Erson (Jesterpolska by Peter Erson)
One of the happiest tunes I can think of, Gycklarpolskan, by the late nyckelharpist Peter Erson, I learned from the sackpipa playing of Per Gudmunson. It was composed about 1982, when Peter and Per were both teaching at Wicks Castle in Uppland. This was the first time Peter had played with a sackpipa. He was so inspired by the sound, he completed Gycklarpolskan that evening.
Harris hammered dulcimer
Barry cello, pipe organ, percussion
Source: Sackpipa, Per Gudmunson (Giga Glp-8, Sweden, 1983).
7. Cantiga de Santa María #206
Alfonso X (1221-1284), also known as “El Sabio” (The Wise), was king of Castile and Leon. During his reign, Arab, Jewish, and Christian scholars wrote many great works of history, astronomy and the other sciences. Alfonso, a musician himself, also direct- ed the collection of more than 400 cantigas de Santa María, songs that praise the miracles brought about by the Virgin Mary (cantigas de miragre), as well as poetic hymns in praise of the Virgin (cantiga de loor). Alfonso was truly a troubadour of Mary, and one of his life’s ambitions was to renew the bonds that tie us all to the spiritual world through music. Cantiga #206 is one of many that use both duple and triple meters within one song.
Barry cello, pipe organ, percussion
Sources: La Musica de las Cantigas de Santa Maria Del Rey Alfonzo El Sabio (1943); text from Alfonso X El Sabio, notes by Riccardo Delfino (Naxos Recordings, 1994).
I’ve always liked early dance tunes, particularly this one. I’ve added a counter- melody and supportive harmony, and imitated the vibe of “early” woodwinds with the pipe organ.
Chris frame drum, bohdran, tambourine
Barry cello, pipe organ
Sources: Examples of Music Before 1400, Harold Gleason (Appleton-Century-Crofts, Inc. New York); Anthology of Medieval Music, Richard H. Hoppin (W. W. Norton & Co., 1978).
9. Caoineadh an Spailpín (Gypsy’s Lament)
Here’s a beautiful Irish melody I had the good fortune to stumble upon one day in the excellent book of airs by Tomas Ó Canainn.
Barry cello, dilruba, pipe organ, zither
Source: Traditional Slow Airs of Ireland, Tomas Ó Canainn (Ossian Publications, Ltd., Cork, Ireland, 1995).
10. I Love to See the Wheels in Motion
A “circular march” from the Shaker community at Enfield, New Hampshire dated November 5, 1844. My wife, Shelley, arranged this tune for our friend Debra Spencer to sing, then I stole it from her and re-arranged it for this recording.
I love to see the wheels in motion
Love to see them moving round
Love to hear the drums a-beating
Love to hear the trumpets sound.
Shelley oboe, harp
Barry cello, zither, harmonium
Source: The Shaker Spiritual, Daniel Patterson (Princeton Univ. Press, New Jersey, 1979).
11. Shto Mi E Milo
Macedonia trad. (based on the Ethel Raim arr.)
For several summers I had the good fortune (?!) of being lulled to sleep by the sounds of our local Balkan group practicing into the night. The sound has filtered through the years and into this recording. Thanks to Kitka, Shira-Devra Cion, and Anne Cleveland.
How nice it would be to have a shop in Struga: to sit and watch the girls carry water, in their colorful jars, where the students meet.
Barry cello, dilruba, pipe organ
Source: Diaphonica CD 098, Kitka (www.kitka.org).
12. Ladom Se, Goro Zalade
Bulgarian trad. (based on the Philip Koutev arr.)
I always thought the arrangements of Philip Koutev would work well with a cello ensemble. This version of Ladom Se, Goro Zalade is based on the Koutev arrangement, then expanded for a mixed ensemble of celli, dilrubas and harmoniums.Thanks to Village Harmony.
Shade fell on the hillside. Nikola wants to go hunting. His mother says, “No don’t go son, you’ll meet enemies.”
Barry cello, dilruba, pipe organ, harmonium
Source: Traditional Songs of the Balkans, edited by Mary Kay Brass (Village Harmony, Northern Harmony Publishing Co., 1995).
13. Polska efter Pelle Fors
A polska from Vikbolandet. I learned it from Hedningarna’s premiere recording of 1989. I feel that all the music we hear and play lives happily in our heads without borders between folk, classical, Western, or Eastern. This arrangement takes the Swedish polska through the San Francisco Conservatory as well as India.
Barry cello, octave mandolin, shaker
Source: Hedningarna, (Alice Musik Produktion, Sweden, 1989).
14. Thugamar Féin an Samhradh Linn (We Brought the Summer with Us)
In the book Three Streams, Deborah White writes about this song: “A summer carol that would have been sung and danced as a round dance to welcome the season.
The word ‘samhradh’ refers not only to summer itself, but also to the garland that the maidens would weave and wear upon their heads while dancing.” This tune, says Bunting, “is probably extremely ancient. It was sung by the band of Virgins that went out of Dublin to welcome the Duke of Ormond when he landed in Ireland.”
Jared Scottish smallpipes
Neal mountain dulcimer
Barry cello, cittern, pipe organ, bells
Sources: Three Streams Traditional Music of Scotland and Ireland, Distant Oaks (North Wind, 1998; www.distantoaks.com/nwr); Ancient Irish Music, (Edward Bunting Dublin, 1796).
15. Inis Oírr (Inishere)
Thomas P. Walsh/Ireland
I learned this tune from two wonderful musicians, flutist Muireann Nic Amhlaoibh and harpist Áine Minogue. Áine had sent it to me suggesting it for this recording, and Muireann played it for me before I had a chance to learn it from Áine. It’s great when a tune insists on making itself known! Inis Oírr, the smallest of the Aran Islands, is where Muireann spent her childhood.
Muireann low whistle
Barry cello, cittern, shaker
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