The Wind and Rain

With Hurricane Irene bearing down on all the Eastern Seaboard today and tomorrow (Stay safe everyone!), this song kept running through my head. I first learned it in college, when my interest in Shakespeare exploded. “The Wind and the Rain” is featured in King Lear, Twelfth Night, and other plays–depending on how the director wants to feature music in the productions.

Here are the words:

Wind and Rain
Attributed to William Shakespeare

When that I was and a little tiny boy,
With heigh-ho, the wind and the rain,
A foolish thing was but a toy,
For the rain it raineth every day.

Chorus

With heigh-ho, the wind and the rain,
For the rain it raineth every day.

But when I came to man’s estate,
‘Gainst knaves and thieves men shut their gate.

Chorus

But when I came alas to wive,
By swaggering could I never thrive.

Chorus

But when I came unto my beds,
The toss-pots still had drunken heads.

Chorus

A great while ago, the world began,
With heigh-ho, the wind and the rain,
But that’s all one, our song is done,
And we’ll strive to please you every day.

This also gave me a new opportunity to learn about another English singer, Alfred Deller, who performs the above. Here he is performing “Greensleeves”:

Reflections on a Special Day

There’s a reason that Joni Mitchell’s song, “The Circle Game,” has been going through my head all day, but I won’t discuss why.

I started liking this song several years ago, when my love for carousels was in high gear. I still love carousels. My earliest memory of riding one was in kindergarten, when my school went to a carnival. I don’t know where it was. Either my mom or one of the volunteers stood with me to help me keep my balance. I loved the feeling of whirling around. The horses seemed magical, and I kept staring at their colors.

The carousel at Clemyjontri Park is the best, but I also have fond memories of the one on the Mall. (See the YouTube video below.) A friend rode it with me the day we explored Georgetown and the rest of Washington, DC. I couldn’t get on the horses, but got into the “chariot seats” easily. Today, when I’m down there, I like to go over and watch the kids ride for a few minutes on my way to the next exhibit. It’s cute how they wave to the family members who chose not to get on. They are having a ball, as I used to.

The one at Glen Echo Park is really cool, but I’ve only seen it on a PBS program.

I also have a small collection of carousel horse music boxes that were gifts from my aunt at various times. I should play them more. They are still very beautiful. 

Anyway,”The Circle Game” contains much wisdom. I realize it so much more now. Here are the lyrics, and Joni Mitchell singing it in a 1972 Carnegie Hall performance:

Yesterday a child came out to wonder
Caught a dragonfly inside a jar
Fearful when the sky was full of thunder
And tearful at the falling of a star

Then the child moved ten times round the seasons
Skated over ten clear frozen streams
Words like when you’re older must appease him
And promises of someday make his dreams

And the seasons they go round and round
And the painted ponies go up and down
We’re captive on the carousel of time
We can’t return we can only look
Behind from where we came
And go round and round and round
In the circle game *

Sixteen springs and sixteen summers gone now
Cartwheels turn to car wheels thru the town
And they tell him take your time it won’t be long now
Till you drag your feet to slow the circles down

And the seasons they go round and round
And the painted ponies go up and down
We’re captive on the carousel of time
We can’t return we can only look
Behind from where we came
And go round and round and round
In the circle game

So the years spin by and now the boy is twenty
Though his dreams have lost some grandeur coming true
There’ll be new dreams maybe better dreams and plenty
Before the last revolving year is through

And the seasons they go round and round
And the painted ponies go up and down
We’re captive on the carousel of time
We can’t return we can only look
Behind from where we came
And go round and round and round
In the circle game

A New Song to Enjoy

Yesterday, my aunt and I shared peach cobbler and coffee at Dogwood Tavern. It’s a sports bar, but they also have music going. One song caught my ear because I liked the melody. An Internet search led me to the band–the Gin Blossoms. The song is “Follow You Down.” I had never heard of the band or the song before now. They are a 1990s band. They formed in 1987, actually. Apparently they have undergone personnel changes and have done solo projects, but it’s good to know they are still recording and performing. I don’t think the 1990s qualify as classic, but I’ll add it anyway. Here’s the video, and then one that showcases the words:

 

I listened to another of their songs, “Found Out About You,” which also sounds good:

Gin Blossoms – Found Out About You – YouTube.

Music Is Everywhere!

A gray day today–but we went to the farmer’s market anyway. There’s always a lot of people, and a lot of neat things to buy for salads, recipes and stuff. and it’s always nice to talk with people when you get the chance. And people are always out walking their dogs.

And there’s always music. This morning a guy was playing bluegrass and the blues, and as we wandered through, I could hear Jean-Joseph Mouret’s “Rondeau.” It’s otherwise known as the theme from Masterpiece Theatre. When I looked across the street, I saw that a man was playing it on violin, and a woman played it on the cello. They performed other duets, but I didn’t recognize the compositions. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to cross over and tell them how much I liked their playing.

Here is a version of “Rondeau” that I liked. Usually, I associate it with trumpets, but a YouTube search shows that people enjoy playing it on the piano, organ, harp and many other instruments. Here is one I liked: