Ralph Vaughan Williams was an English composer of the Modern era who shunned the Romantic era compositional style and instead established himself as a composer of clear textures and English folk music inspired melodies. He was influenced by French composer Maurice Ravel to move in this direction, and was able to compose many works for large and small ensembles, vocal and instrumental, throughout his 60+ year career. He is celebrated internationally but especially in England, and his music is performed and recorded frequently.
Mr. Vaughan-Williams composed 6 Studies in English Folk Song in 1926. It is a set of folk songs originally arranged for cello and piano. Each song follows the same format, a relatively plain representation of the tune followed by a more improvisatory sounding ornamented version. Mr. Vaughan Williams wrote that he wished for these songs to be “treated with love”. In this presentation the songs are arranged for harp instead of piano, and we feature a different instrument in duet with the harp for each song. In order, they are: “Lovely on the Water”, “Spurn Point”, “Van Diemen’s Land”, “The Lady and the Dragon”, “She Borrowed Some of Her Mother’s Gold”, and “As I Walked Over London Bridge”.
John Winn (1971- )
John Winn has been a popular favorite of North Country audiences since he first performed with Loon Lake Live back in the early aughts. He has composed and arranged music for all manner of groups, including two original compositions which Loon Lake Live premiered. When he’s not composing or arranging, he might be singing, playing sax or clarinet or any instrument he feels like, or doing voiceovers. When he’s not doing any of those things he’s likely gone out fishing. One day we will be as cool as he is.
In Mr. Winn’s own words — Adirondack Suite is in three movements, each conjuring a sense of life in the Adirondacks through brief aural vignettes. “Indian Village” evokes life for the native peoples who originally inhabited the area. The fiddle melody toward the end of this movement represents the arrival of settlers. “On the Lake — The Big Fish” speaks to the wonder I find at being on the water in the dawn or dusk hours. The second part depicts a fight between fish and fisherman, ending (this time) with the man proudly parading the bested fish through town. “Around the Campfire” suggests the reasons so many people love summer in the Adirondacks — to become lost in the magic of a campfire, singing songs, swapping stories, or remembering those who’ve gone on ahead.
George Gershwin (1898-1937)
George Gershwin was a first generation American composer and pianist of Ukrainian-Jewish heritage, who got his professional start on Tin Pan Alley as a songwriter but branched into musical theater and classical genres as well. He composed for chamber ensemble, orchestra, wrote two piano concertos, and the ground breaking opera Porgy and Bess in addition to countless songs, jazz standards, musical theater pieces and film/television scores.
Mr. Gershwin died young and at the height of his career. Who knows where he could’ve taken his composition had he lived longer? His interests included the music of French composers Les Six, Russian composers Igor Stravinsky and Dmitri Shostakovich, and Austrian composers Alban Berg and Arnold Schoenberg. Quite a departure from his established style!
This collection of tunes has been arranged by John Winn for string quartet and clarinet. Each has its own character that reflects the lyrics and sentiment. Enjoy! But Not For Me Old man sunshine listen you Never tell me dreams come true Just try it and I'll start a riot Beatrice Fairfax don't you dare Ever tell me he will care I'm certain it’s the final curtain I never want to hear from any cheerful Pollyannas Who tell you fate supplies a mate It's all bananas They’re writing songs of love but not for me A lucky star’s above but not for me With love to lead the way I've found more clouds of gray Than any Russian play could guarantee I was a fool to fall and get that way Hi-ho, alas, and also lack-a-day Although I can’t dismiss the memory of his kiss I guess he's not for me I was a fool to fall and get that way Hi-ho, alas, and also lack-a-day Although I can't dismiss the memory of his kiss
I Loves You, Porgy I loves you, porgy, Don’t let him take me Don’t let him handle me And drive me mad If you can keep me I wanna stay here with you forever And I’ll be glad Yes I loves you, porgy, Don’t let him take me Don’t let him handle me With his hot hands If you can keep me I wants to stay here with you forever I’ve got my man I loves you, porgy, Don’t let him take me Don’t let him handle me And drive me mad If you can keep me I wanna stay here with you forever I’ve got my man Someday I know he’s coming to call me He’s going to handle me and hold me So, it going to be like dying, porgy When he calls me But when he comes I know I’ll have to go I loves you, porgy, Don’t let him take me Honey, don’t let him handle me And drive me mad If you can keep me I wanna stay here with you forever I’ve got my man
Nice Work If You Can Get It Holding hands at midnight ‘Neath a starry sky Nice work if you can get it And you can get it if you try Strolling with the one girl Sighing sigh after sigh Nice work if you can get it And you can get it if you try Just imagine someone Waiting at the cottage door Where two hearts become one Who could ask for anything more? Loving one who loves you And then taking that vow Nice work if you can get it And if you get it Won’t you tell me how? Just imagine someone Waiting at the cottage door Where two hearts become one Who could ask for anything more? Loving one who loves you And then taking that vow Nice work if you can get it And if you get it Won’t you tell me how?
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