Blow the Wind Southerly

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Blow the Wind Southerly card, disegno di Natalie Reid

Una vecchia melodia del Border (Northumbrian Folk Song) “Blow The Wind Southerly” con un testo andato in stampa nel 1834 nella raccolta The Bishoprick Garland compilata da Sir Cuthbert Sharpe, resa famosa da Kathleen Ferrier (che la registrò nel 1949); così scrive Robert Cummings “il testo di Blow the Wind Southerly u pubblicato per la prima volta in Inghilterra in una raccolta del 1834, canzoni, ballate e vari altri scritti, intitolata “The Bishoprick Garland” a cura di J. Ritson. In realtà, solo una piccola parte di quella poesia è stata usata per questa canzone tradizionale. La melodia probabilmente precede le origini del testo del diciannovesimo secolo. Gli autori di entrambe le parole e la musica sono anonimi, ma la canzone può essere rintracciata nella Contea del Northumbria, nel nord dell’Inghilterra. La piacevole melodia del ritmo è adorabile nel suo fascino sentimentale e nei modi spensierati e folk. Ha un contorno a forma di U [il fraseggio della melodia è a forma di U] e, stranamente, la sua frase di chiusura ha una sorprendente somiglianza con le ultime note della famosa melodia di “We Wish You a Merry Christmas”. I due temi sono d’altra parte di una diversa espressione emotiva, Blow the Wind Southerly è a stento gioviale nel suo significato di desiderio, ma è dolce e leggero nella sua malinconia. Il testo parla di una giovane donna che implora il vento di soffiare a sud per portare a riva la nave del suo amante. Questa deliziosa canzone piacerà alla maggior parte degli ascoltatori interessati alla canzone tradizionale.” (tratto da qui)

Una melodia romantica ma triste che è eseguita spesso nel canto lirico con ensemble orchestrali o cameristici: sebbene la versione in frammento non sia esplicita, sappiamo che si tratta di un lamento, l’uomo è morto in mare e la donna che canta ritorna ossessivamente a scrutare il mare nella vana speranza del suo ritorno.

Andreas Scholl & Orpheus Chamber Orchestra in Wayfaring Stranger – Folksongs 2001

Lisa Hannigan live, 


Chorus
Blow the wind southerly,
southerly, southerly,
Blow the wind south
o’er the bonny blue sea;
Blow the wind southerly,
southerly, southerly,
Blow bonnie breeze, my lover to me.
I
They told me last night
there were ships in the offing,
And I hurried down
to the deep rolling sea;
But my eye could not see
it wherever might be it,
The barque (1) that is bearing
my lover to me.
II
I stood by the lighthouse
the last time we parted,
Till darkness came down
o’er the deep rolling sea,
And no longer I saw
the bright bark of my lover.
Blow, bonny breeze
and bring him to me.
III
Oh, is it not sweet to hear
the breeze singing,
As lightly it comes
o’er the deep rolling sea?
But sweeter and dearer by far
when ‘tis bringing,
The barque of my true love
in safety to me.
Traduzione italiana Cattia Salto
Coro
Soffia vento del Sud,
del Sud, del Sud
soffia vento del sud
sul mare azzurro
Soffia vento del Sud,
del Sud, del Sud
portami dolce brezza, il mio amore
I
Mi hanno detto ieri sera
che c’erano delle navi in vista
e mi sono precipitata giù
verso il mare profondo,
ma i miei occhi non riuscivano a scorgere dove potesse essere
il brigantino che porta
il mio amore verso di me
II
Stavo accanto al faro
l’ultima volta che ci siamo separati finchè sopraggiunse l’oscurità
sul mare profondo
e non vedevo più
il bel brigantino del mio amore.
Soffia dolce brezza
e portalo da me!
III
Oh non è dolce sentire
mormorare la brezza
mentre leggera
viene sul mare profondo?
Ma di gran lunga più dolce e cara quando porta
il brigantino del mio amore
in salvo da me.

NOTE
1) barque significa genericamente barca (bark) e nello specifico indica un brigantino (o brigantino a palo)

Stessa melodia per THE BOSTON COME-ALL-YE

FONTI
https://musescore.com/churchorganist/scores/156777
https://www.8notes.com/scores/3606.asp

Blow The Wind Southerly

Blow the Wind Southerly card, design from Natalie Reid

Leggi in italiano

An old melody of the Border (Northumbrian Folk Song) “Blow The Wind Southerly” with a text printed in 1834 in the collection “The Bishoprick Garland” compiled by Sir Cuthbert Sharpe, made famous by Kathleen Ferrier (who recorded it in 1949); Robert Cummings writes  “The text to Blow the Wind Southerly was first published in England in an 1834 collection of songs, ballads, and various other writings called The Bishoprick Garland and was edited by J. Ritson. Actually, only a small part of that poem was used for this traditional song. The melody probably predates the early nineteenth century origins of the text. The authors of both the words and music are anonymous, but the song can be traced to Northumbrian County in northern England. The leisurely paced melody is lovely in its sentimental charm and carefree, folk-ish manner. It has a U-shaped contour, and, oddly, its closing phrase bears a striking resemblance to the last notes in the famous melody to “We Wish You a Merry Christmas.” The two themes are otherwise of a different emotional cast, Blow the Wind Southerly is hardly jovial in its sense of longing, but it is gentle and light in its melancholy. The text speaks of a young woman beseeching the wind to blow southerly to bring her lover’s ship to shore. This delightful song will appeal to most listeners with an interest in traditional song.” (from here)

A romantic but sad melody that is often performed in lyric singing with orchestral or chamber ensembles: although the fragmented version is not explicit, we know that it is a lament, the man died at sea and the singing woman returns obsessively to scrutinize the sea in the vain hope of his return.

Andreas Scholl & Orpheus Chamber Orchestra from Wayfaring Stranger – Folksongs 2001

Lisa Hannigan live, 


Chorus
Blow the wind southerly,
southerly, southerly,
Blow the wind south
o’er the bonny blue sea;
Blow the wind southerly,
southerly, southerly,
Blow bonnie breeze, my lover to me.
I
They told me last night
there were ships in the offing,
And I hurried down
to the deep rolling sea;
But my eye could not see
it wherever might be it,
The barque (1) that is bearing
my lover to me.
II
I stood by the lighthouse
the last time we parted,
Till darkness came down
o’er the deep rolling sea,
And no longer I saw
the bright bark of my lover.
Blow, bonny breeze
and bring him to me.
III
Oh, is it not sweet to hear
the breeze singing,
As lightly it comes
o’er the deep rolling sea?
But sweeter and dearer by far
when ‘tis bringing,
The barque of my true love
in safety to me.

NOTE
1) barque generally means boat (bark) and specifically indicates a brig 

Same melody of THE BOSTON COME-ALL-YE

LINK
https://musescore.com/churchorganist/scores/156777
https://www.8notes.com/scores/3606.asp

Windy old weather (Fishes Lamentation)

Leggi in italiano

The songs of the sea run from shore to shore, in particular “Windy old weather”, which according to Stan Hugill is a song by Scottish fishermen entitled “The Fish of the Sea”, also popular on the North-East coasts of the USA and Canada.
TITLES: Fishes Lamentation, Fish in the Sea, Haisboro Light Song (Up Jumped the Herring), The Boston Come-All-Ye, Blow Ye Winds Westerly, Windy old weather

A forebitter sung occasionally as a sea shanty, redating back to 1700 and probably coming from some broadsides with the title “The Fishes’ Lamentation“. “This song appears on some broadsides as The Fishes’ Lamentation and seems to have survived as a sailor’s chantey or fisherman’s song. Whall (1910), Colcord (1938) and Hugill (1964) include it in their chantey books. We also recorded it from Bob Roberts on board his Thames barge, The Cambria. It also appears in the Newfoundland and Nova Scotia collections of Ken Peacock and Helen Creighton“. (from here)

A fishing ship is practicing trawling on a full moon night, and as if by magic, the fishes start talking and warning sailors about the arrival of a storm. The fishes described are all belonging to the Atlantic Ocean and are quite commonly found in the English Channel and the North Sea (as well as in the Mediterranean Sea).
The variants can be grouped into two versions

FIRST VERSION  Blow the Man down tune

In this version the fish warn (or threaten) the fishermen on the arrival of the storm, urging them to head to the ground. The text is reported in “Oxford Book of Sea Songs”, Roy Palmer

Bob Roberts, from Windy old weather, 1958

David Tinervia · Nils Brown · Sean Dagher · Clayton Kennedy · David Gossage from Assassin’s Creed – Black Flag
“Windy Old Weather”

Dan Zanes &  Festival Five Folk from Sea Music 2003 a fresh version between country and old time.

I
As we were a-fishing
off Happisburgh(1) light
Shooting and hauling
and trawling all night,
In the windy old weather,
stormy old weather
When the wind blows
we all pull together
II
When up jumped a herring,
the queen (king) of the sea(2)
Says “Now, old skipper,
you cannot catch me,”
III
We sighted a Thresher(3)
-a-slashin’ his tail,
“Time now Old Skipper
to hoist up your sail.”
IV (4)
And up jumps a Slipsole
as strong as a horse(5),
Says now, “Old Skipper
you’re miles off course.”
V
Then along comes plaice
-who’s got spots on his side,
Says “Not much longer
-these seas you can ride.”
VI
Then up rears a conger(6)
-as long as a mile,
“Winds coming east’ly”
-he says with a smile.
VII
I think what these fishes
are sayin’ is right,
We’ll haul up our gear(7)
now an’ steer for the light.

NOTES
1) Happisburgh lighthouse (“Hazeboro”) is located in the English county of ​​Norfolk, it was built in 1790 and painted in white and red stripes; It is managed by a foundation that deals with the maintenance of more than one hundred lighthouses throughout Great Britain. 112 are the steps to reach the tower that still works without the help of man. The headlights at the beginning were two but the lower one was dismantled in 1883 due to coastal erosion. The two lighthouses marked a safe passage through the Haagborough Sands
2) In the Nordic countries herrings (fresh or better in brine or smoked) are served in all sauces from breakfast to dinner. “It is a fish that loves cold seas and lives in numerous herds.The herring fishing in the North Seas has been widespread since the Middle Ages.It is clearly facilitated by the quantity of fish and the limited range of their movements. trawlers and start the fishing season on May 1, to close it after two months.In all the countries of North America and Northern Europe this fishing has an almost sacred character, because it has been for years the providence of fishermen and is a real natural wealth In the Netherlands and Sweden, for example, the first day of herring fishing is organized in honor of the queen and is proclaimed a national holiday ” (from here)
3) Thresher shark thresher, thrasher, fox shark, alopius vulpinus.with a characteristic tail with a very elongated upper part (almost as much as the length of the body) that the animal uses as a whip to stun and overwhelm its prey. The name comes from Aristotle who considered this fish very clever, because he was skilled in escaping from the fishermen
4) the mackerel stanza is missing:
then along comes a mackerel with strips on his back
“Time now, old skipper, to shift yout main tack”
5) perhaps refers to halibut or halibut, of considerable size, has an oval and flattened body, similar to that of a large sole, with the eyes on the right side
6) the “conger” is a fish with an elongated body similar to eel but more robust, can reach a length of two or three meters and exceeds ten kilos of weight. It is a fundamental ingredient in the Livorno cacciucco dish!
7) another translation of the sentence could be: we recover our networks

SCOTTISH VERSION, Blaw the Wind Southerly tune

In this version the fish take possession of the ship, it seems the description of the ghost ship of “Davy Jone”, the evil spirit of the waters made so vividly in the movie “Pirates of the Caribbean”. An old Scottish melody accompanies a series of variations of the same song.
davy-jones

 

Quadriga Consort from Ship Ahoy, 2011 ♪ 

Michiel Schrey, Sean Dagher, Nils Brown from, Assasin’s Creed – Black Flag  titled “Fish in the sea” (stanzas from I to III and VIII)

I
Come all you young sailor men,
listen to me,
I’ll sing you a song
of the fish in the sea;
(Chorus)
And it’s…Windy weather, boys,
stormy weather, boys,
When the wind blows,
we’re all together, boys;
Blow ye winds westerly,
blow ye winds, blow,
Jolly sou’wester, boys,
steady she goes.
II
Up jumps the eel
with his slippery tail,
Climbs up aloft
and reefs the topsail.
III
Then up jumps the shark
with his nine rows of teeth,
Saying, “You eat the dough boys,
and I’ll eat the beef!”
IV
Up jumps the lobster
with his heavy claws,
Bites the main boom
right off by the jaws!
V
Up jumps the halibut,
lies flat on the deck
He says, ‘Mister Captain,
don’t step on my neck!’
VI
Up jumps the herring,
the king of the sea,
Saying, ‘All other fishes,
now you follow me!’
VII
Up jumps the codfish
with his chuckle-head (1),
He runs out up forward
and throws out the lead!
VIII
Up jumps the whale
the largest of all,
“If you want any wind,
well, I’ll blow ye a squall(2)!”

NOTES
1) literally “stupid head” is a common saying among the fishermen that the cod is stupid, because it does not recognize the bait and lets himself hoist docilely on board.
2) the fishermen were / are very superstitious men, in all latitudes, it takes little or nothing to attract misfortune in the sea, it is still a widespread belief that the devil or the evil spirit has power over the sea and storms.

AMERICAN VARIANT: THE BOSTON COME-ALL-YE

Of the second version, the best-known in America bears the title “The Boston as-all-ye” as collected by Joanna Colcord in her “Songs of American Sailormen” which she writes”There can be little doubt that [this] song, although it was sung throughout the merchant service, began life with the fishing fleet. We have the testimony of Kipling in Captains Courageous that it was a favourite within recent years of the Banks fishermen. It is known as The Fishes and also by its more American title of The Boston Come-All-Ye. The chorus finds its origin in a Scottish fishing song Blaw the Wind Southerly. A curious fact is that Captain Whall, a Scotchman himself, prints this song with an entirely different tune, and one that has no connection with the air of the Tyneside keelmen to which our own Gloucester fishermen sing it. The version given here was sung by Captain Frank Seeley.”

Peggy Seeger from  Whaler Out of New Bedford, 1962

I
Come all ye young sailormen
listen to me,
I’ll sing you a song
of the fish of the sea.
Then blow ye winds westerly,
westerly blow;
we’re bound to the southward,
so steady she goes
.
II
Oh, first came the whale,
he’s the biggest of all,
he clumb up aloft,
and let every sail fall.
III
Next came the mackerel
with his striped back,
he hauled aft the sheets
and boarded each tack(1).
IV
The porpoise(2) came next
with his little snout,
he grabbed the wheel,
calling “Ready? About!(3”
V
Then came the smelt(4),
the smallest of all,
he jumped to the poop
and sung out, “Topsail, haul!”
VI
The herring came saying,
“I’m king of the seas!
If you want any wind,
I’ll blow you a breeze.”
VII
Next came the cod
with his chucklehead (5),
he went to the main-chains
to heave to the lead.
VIII
Last come the flounder(6)
as flat as the ground,
saying, “Damn your eyes, chucklehead, mind how you sound”!

NOTES
1) In sailing, tack is a corner of a sail on the lower leading edge. Separately, tack describes which side of a sailing vessel the wind is coming from while under way—port or starboard. Tacking is the maneuver of turning between starboard and port tack by bringing the bow (the forward part of the boat) through the wind. (from Wiki)
2) porpoise is often considered as a small dolphin, has a distinctive rounded snout and has no beak like dolphins
3) it  is the helmsman shouting
4 ) smelt it (osmero) is a small fish that lives in the Channel and in the North Sea; its name derives from the fact that its flesh gives off an unpleasant odor
5) literally “stupid head” is a common saying among the fishermen that the cod is stupid, because it does not recognize the bait and lets himself hoist docilely on board.

Blow the Wind Southerly

LINK
http://www.pubblicitaitalia.com/ilpesce/2013/1/12262.html
http://www.contemplator.com/sea/fishes.html
http://moodpoint.com/lyrics/unknown/song_of_the_fishes.html
http://www.shanty.org.uk/archive_songs/windy-old-weather.html
https://mainlynorfolk.info/cyril.tawney/songs/windyoldweather.html
http://www.mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=149445
http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=49498
https://thesession.org/tunes/11479
http://bestpossiblejob.blogspot.it/2008/09/come-all-ye-young-and-not-so-young.html