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Monday, August 27, 2012

Memorable Melodies: Miss Thomasina Tucker's Repertoire, Part II

As promised, here's Part Two of Miss Tommy Tucker's Repertoire! In the opening story of Kate Douglas Wiggin’s Ladies In Waiting, our heroine, aspiring singer Thomasina Tucker, finds that her repertoire of old-fashioned ballads and folk songs doesn’t always go over well with audiences, some of whom prefer more modern or sophisticated music. But happily for Tommy, it does succeed in helping her win the heart of one particular listener, the solitary and lonely Fergus, whose melancholy soul is touched by and opens up to her passionate voice!

Our first post covering some of her famous tunes focused on those of Irish origin, and here we have ballads of Scottish and English birth. Be sure to check out our article about James Hogg, the Scottish poet known as "The Ettrick Shepherd," who is widely credited with penning our first selection!

Charlie Is My Darling
There are several different sets of lyrics to this Scottish ballad. This earlier version performed here, attributed to both James Hogg (1770 – 1835) and Carolina Oliphant, Lady Nairne (1766 – 1845), was a patriotic song of the Jacobite movement, referring to Bonnie Prince Charlie and his efforts to regain the throne of Scotland. A later version by Robert Burns was less political and more of a romantic song.

Phillida Flouts Me
An anonymous English song of unrequited love from the 17th century, subtitled, “Or, a Country Lover’s Complaint.” (The second half of the video is a different song.)

Early One Morning
An English folk song, dating to some time in the 18th century. As with many folksongs, there are many different versions, but this appears to be the best-known.

Barbara Allen
Another old and very well-known folk song dating back at least to the 17th century, which may have originated in northern England or Scotland. The version sung here by Jo Stafford is one of several different tunes the song has been sung to, and there are many variations on the lyrics. A different version of the song was featured beautifully in the 1951 film adaptation of A Christmas Carol.

POSTED BY:  Elisabeth Grace Foley

Ladies in Waiting by Kate Douglas Wiggin
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