RECORDINGS CURRENTLY AVAILABLE:
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SONGS FOR GROWN-UPS:
‘SONGS FOR THE INNER CHILD’ SERIES:
Songs to Walter de la Mare, settings of 40 poems by one of the English-speaking world's
great poets, sung by the composer, backed by members of the Aomezeyck Ensemble.
This is the third in a projected series SONGS FOR THE INNER CHILD -- settings of poems written for children (but also enjoyable by grown-ups) by some of the finest English-language poets of the Victorian and Edwardian eras.
Walter de la Mare was a prolific writer of poems, but also wrote short stories and novels. He is perhaps best known for his poem "The Listeners." He died in 1956.
By permission of the Society of Authors as the representative of the Walter de la Mare estate, the CD also contains a 24-page booklet with the texts of the 40 songs.
Samples from Songs to Walter de la Mare:
Songs to Eugene Field, settings of 21 poems by one of America's best-loved poets, sung by Kathleen Johnson, and backed by the Aomezeyck Ensemble.
This is the second in a projected series SONGS FOR THE INNER CHILD -- settings of poems written for children (but also enjoyable by grown-ups) by some of the best English-language poets of the Victorian and Edwardian eras.
Eugene Field, a contemporary of Robert Louis Stevenson, was known in his day as America's Children's Poet. He wrote not only for children, but about childhood too. Most of his poems for children are still as fresh today as they were a hundred years ago.
Kathleen Johnson is a music therapist. As a singer and composer she has published a CD (entitled "You Might As Well Live") combining her music with poems by Dorothy Parker.
The songs in this Field CD are very melodic treatments of 21 of some of Field's most popular poems for children, including quite a number of lullabies.
"As in the Stevenson CD, it is difficult to fit the music into a specific niche. Marry light classics with folk music, and you're half-way there. I think Field would have liked what I did with his poems." -- The composer.
The CD contains a 24-page booklet with the text of the 21 songs. The illustrations, with one exception, are by youngsters from the Ottawa area.
Samples from the CD "Songs to Eugene Field".
Songs to Robert Louis Stevenson, 25 settings of poems from Stevenson’s A Child’s Garden of Verses, sung by mezzo-soprano Lisa Lapointe with guitar accompaniment by John Klepko. A simple, respectful and very melodic treatment of Stevenson's poems, that can be enjoyed by children and adults alike.
“My approach to these poems was to give them the kind of melody that a turn-of-the-century composer of light classics with an affinity to folk music would have applied. I'm thinking of Percy Grainer and Albert Ketelbey, for instance. -- The composer.
“Yes, they have affinities with lieder, in the quiet, intimate tone and the educated dialogue between voice and accompaniment--except that introductions and codas are shorter than in many lieder. The beautiful voice by Lisa Lapointe is also not in bel canto style (which would indeed have made them more Edwardian but at the same time more self-consciously 'art songs') -- more like the careful folk style of Joan Baez, I thought. However, both artists' careful choice of tone... and the soft Dowland-like guitar 'commentary' are a real delight. Hmm... well-kempt folk songs, quiet Dowland-like guitar- songs, intimate folk-lieder in the lute-song tradition?” -- Richard Dury. (Robert Louis Stevenson website: www.unibg.it/rls)
"I really enjoyed listening to these. They have a lovely folk-like quality, but they're fresh and they're perfectly tuned to the Stevenson verses that I know some of you know so well." -- Eric Friesen, Studio Sparks, CBC Radio 2.
The CD contains a 16-page booklet with the text of the 25 songs.
Samples from the CD "Songs to Robert Louis Stevenson".
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Click here to contact Byte-town Fyfer if you wish to be advised on the availability of the next project(s) in the series. We will not bother you by eM for any other purpose, nor sell, trade, rent, lend or give out your eM address to anyone else.
The above songs and more, are available in four parts for mezzo-soprano, violin/flute/oboe, piano/harp, and cello. They are arranged in four suites: the first three arranged by the composer, proofed and edited by Anne Dubrofsky; the fourth suite arranged by Canadian composer Kevork Andonian, whose works have been performed and recorded internationally. For inquiries, please click here.
The song ‘Bush and Thorn’ (also known as ‘A Bush, A Tree, A Stone’) sung and played by harpist Therese Schroeder-Sheker on her 1991 CD entitled In Dulci Jubilo (Celestial Harmonies 13039-2) of which reviewer Richard Banks said in 1998:
“I was most impressed with Bush and Thorn, a contemporary work by the Dutch-born Canadian immigré Sjef Frenken. This song has a more celtic sound than any of the others, combined with the ethereal quality which is present throughout the record. Ms. Schroeder-Sheker sings and plays with a rare intensity.”
This CD is still available as far as we know, and can be ordered through your friendly neighbourhood music store, or may be downloaded from the internet.