Top Ten Tuesday

Posted February 16, 2016 by Nicky in General / 12 Comments

This week’s theme is all about music — and one of the suggestions is “10 songs I wish were books”. Well, let’s see…

  1. Suzanne Vega’s ‘Gypsy’Please do not ever look for me, but with me you will stay / and you will hear yourself in song blowing by one day.
  2. Dar Williams’ ‘The Ocean’. I didn’t go back today, I wanted to show you / that I was more land than water / I went to pick flowers, I brought them to you / Look at me, look at them, with their salt up the stem.
  3. Danny Schmidt’s ‘Firestorm’. I used to flap my tongue like fists of flint against the granite fools / Until sparks blazed in my eyes, it’s true / But now I’m done with that, I haven’t / Torched the woods to kill one rabbit / Not for years, not until they came and fucked with you.
  4. Show of Hands’ ‘Haunt You’. I’ll haunt you / Sleep in fear / Whisper curses in your ear / I’ll course right through your heart of steel.
  5. Jon Boden’s ‘Beat the Bounds’. Sat behind the broken wheel / soft-top gone, nothing left to steal / broken shades upon her eyes / oblivious to cloudy skies.
  6. Fairport Convention’s ‘Matty Groves’. “A grave, a grave,” Lord Donald cried / “To put these lovers in / But bury my lady at the top / For she was of noble kin.”
  7. Heather Dale’s ‘Lady of the Lake’. And their touch was like a lover’s / Clear and sweet, drenching and unfolding / With no need for air or sunlight in the deep / And in the passions that they bared / In pledges won and secrets shared / They’d stand together in what destiny would bring / And crown a king.
  8. Heather Dale’s ‘Confession’. She’s given up the veil, the vows she’d sworn / Abandoned every effort to conform / Without a word to anyone she’s gone her way alone / A dove escaping back into the storm.
  9. Dar Williams’ ‘This Was Pompeii’. I am thinking about a teacup / Suspended and half-served / and all the scholars know is that it’s perfectly preserved.
  10. Thea Gilmore & Joan Baez’s ‘The Lower Road’. From the fruit on a poplar tree / To the bruise round a band of gold / From the blood in a far country / To the war of just growing old / We travel a lower road / And it’s lonely and it is cold.

I listen to folk music a lot, so there’s a whole wealth of songs which tell stories. And sometimes I’d like a glimpse deeper…



12 responses to “Top Ten Tuesday

  1. ::cough:: That Fairport Convention song would be “Matty Groves.” As I’m sure you’re aware, there is a number of books written about “Tam Lin”!

    Now you’ve gotten me thinking about a novel version of “Matty Groves.” Hmm. Hasn’t anyone done it before? And if not, why the heck not?!

    • Ugh, that would be because I originally picked an element of “Tam Lin” that I hadn’t seen in a novel, but changed my mind and picked “Matty Groves”. I’ve never come across a novelisation or even a short story of it — if you find one anywhere…

        • I… can’t find it now. And I’m wondering if I was thinking of a different version which I heard recently and can’t find again either…

            • Hmmm. *checks* Nope, not that either. I have a feeling it was something relatively obscure Spotify suggested to me in my “discover weekly” playlist. Female singer. And I seem to recall it wasn’t directly from or adapted from the usual Child Ballad wording. Focused more on the part where her father realises she’s pregnant, I think… I recall something about her “going among” the ladies and gentleman and — gah, I can’t grab enough of it to google.

              It may be my imagination it had anything different in it, just that it might have sparked me to think about it in a different way…

                • Anais Mitchell! I found it. Here, the last one.

                  The bit that caught my eye:

                  “What makes you pull the poison rose?
                  What makes you break the tree?
                  What makes you harm the little babe
                  That I have got with thee?”
                  “Oh I will pull the rose, Tamlin
                  I will break the tree
                  But I’ll not bear the little babe
                  That you have got with me”
                  “If he were to a gentleman
                  And not a wild shade
                  I’d rock him all the winter’s night
                  And all the summer’s day”

                  • Aha! That album is on my to-buy list and not yet in my collection 😉 And that version is definitely different than others I’ve heard. That is very interesting that she basically says “none of the gentleman are good enough for me, but if a gentleman was the father I would keep the baby.”

  2. Great list of songs! I would be terrible at this topic, since I rarely pay attention to lyrics in songs. But I think a lot of country songs would make good books (most of them are already like a mini story anyway!)

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