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BOTM July 2020 The Three Ravens

Nick Wyver

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Probably inspired by the choice of La Follia as SOTM last month, I've gone back in time for this month's ballad to 1611 and probably earlier. It's a cheerful little ditty concerning ravens speculating about taking breakfast on a dead knight, but don't let that bother you - the tune's very nice. :)

There are lots of versions of the words. Here's one:

There were three ravens sat on a tree,
Downe a downe, hay downe, a downe,
They were as black as they might be.
With a downe, downe, downe
Then one of them said to his mate,
Where shall we now our breakfast take?
With a downe, derrie, derrie, downe, downe.
Down in yonder dear green field,
Downe a downe, hay downe, a downe,
There lies a Knight slain under his shield,
With a downe, downe, downe
His hounds they lie down at his feet,
So well do they their Master keep,
With a downe, derrie, derrie, downe, downe.
His hawks they fly so eagerly,
Downe a downe, hay downe, a downe,
There's no fowl dare him come nie
With a downe, downe, downe
Down there comes a fallow Doe,
As great with young as she might go,
With a downe, derrie, derrie, downe, downe.
She lifted up his bloody head,
Downe a downe, hay downe, a downe,
And kissed his wounds that were so red,
With a downe, downe, downe
She got him up upon her back,
And carried him to earthen lake,
With a downe, derrie, derrie, downe, downe.
She buried him before the prime,
Oh derrie
She was dead herself ere euen-song time.
God send every gentleman,
Such hawks, such hounds, and such a Leman

It's a folk song so most (all?) the versions you'll find on Youtube are played pretty straight but don't let that stop you mucking about with it. This is my favourite, Sarah Leaonard assisted by John Harle.
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h-MXpyXL-tE


As usual the wonderful @nigeld has provided the wherewithal to get you going. It can all be found here.

When @nigeld asked me to host this month's BOTM I quickly recorded this unaccompanied bit before he had time to provide the stuff. It might give you some ideas. I'll do something with the accompaniment when I get access to saxes and recording gear again. Building work at home has meant playing room is off limits at the mo.
The Three Ravens
 

nigeld

I don't need another mouthpiece; but . . .
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Here's a fairly straight folk-singer arrangement.

 

nigeld

I don't need another mouthpiece; but . . .
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The backing track repeats the song 5 times. If anyone wants a shorter version, then just let me know.
 
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Nick Wyver

Nick Wyver

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I thought I would give this a go! I had to run through it a couple of times as I am experimenting with an in line Marshall Reverb pedal at the recording stage. This is a straight no fiddle single take no post processing. YAS Mki Jody Jazz DV MP 3.5 L Rigotti Classic reed.

Nice one. I hope it spurs a few more to have a bash.
 
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