FolkWorld #74 03/2021
© Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Child Ballads: The Three Ravens

The Three Ravens

"The Three Ravens" (Child 26, Roud 5) is an English folk ballad, printed in the song book Melismata compiled by Thomas Ravenscroft and published in 1611, but it is perhaps older than that. Newer versions (with different music) were recorded right up through the 19th century. Francis James Child recorded several versions in his Child Ballads (catalogued as number 26). A Scots language ballad called "Twa Corbies" ("Two Ravens" or "Two Crows") has lyrics based on "The Three Ravens" with a similar general story, but with a darker twist. Twa Corbies is sung to a different melody.

The ballad takes the form of three scavenger birds conversing about where and what they should eat. One tells of a newly slain knight, but they find he is guarded by his loyal hawks and hounds. Furthermore, a "fallow doe", an obvious metaphor for the knight's pregnant ("as great with young as she might go") lover or mistress (see "leman") comes to his body, kisses his wounds, bears him away, and buries him, leaving the ravens without a meal. The narrative ends with "God send euery gentleman / Such haukes, such hounds, and such a Leman".

Text of the ballad

The lyrics to "The Three Ravens" are here transcribed using 1611 orthography. They can be sung either straight through in stanzas of four lines each, or in stanzas of two lines each repeating the first line three times depending on how long the performer would like the ballad to last. The second method appears to be the more canonical, so that is what is illustrated below. The refrains are sung in all stanzas, but they will only be shown for the first.

The Three Ravens
There were three rauens sat on a tree,
downe a downe, hay downe, hay downe,
There were three rauens sat on a tree,
with a downe,
There were three rauens sat on a tree,
They were as blacke as they might be.
With a downe, derrie, derrie, derrie, downe, downe.
The one of them said to his mate,
Where shall we our breakfast take?
Downe in yonder greene field,
There lies a Knight slain under his shield,
His hounds they lie downe at his feete,
So well they can their Master keepe,
His Hawkes they flie so eagerly,
There's no fowle dare him come nie
Downe there comes a fallow Doe,
As great with yong as she might goe,
She lift up his bloudy head,
And kist his wounds that were so red,
She got him up upon her backe,
And carried him to earthen lake,
She buried him before the prime,
She was dead her self ere euen-song time.
God send euery gentleman,
Such haukes, such hounds, and such a Leman.

The Twa Corbies

Written heavily in the Scots language, "The Twa Corbies" probably dates from the 18th century and was first published in Walter Scott's Minstrelsy in 1812. Child (I, 253) quotes a letter from Charles Kirkpatrick Sharpe to Walter Scott (August 8, 1802): "The song of 'The Twa Corbies' was given to me by Miss Erskine of Alva (now Mrs Kerr), who, I think, said that she had written it down from the recitation of an old woman at Alva."

Laoise O'Brien

Laoise O'Brien: The Child Ballads
»My background is in Early Music. I wanted to begin with this track because the most famous version of the tune is that of Thomas Ravenscroft (c1588-1635), from Melismata (1611), although the melody most likely predates this. This is the repertoire that I grew up on so it seemed a good place to start. There are hints of Ravencroft's version in this arrangement but the track's main purpose is to demonstrate the musicians from various genres who have come together to record this album. The song is dark, and thematically has been associated with occult symbolism, so I wanted to layer a number of dark and earthy colours around Fionn's bass voice to create the appropriate atmosphere.«

Fionn Ó hAlmhain (voice), Francesco Turisi (harmonium/percussion), Laoise O'Brien (bass recorder), Malachy Robinson (viol/double bass), Jonas Rake (electric guitar), Eamon Sweeney (lute)

Artist Video Laoise O'Brien @ FROG

It has a more dark and cynical tone than the Three Ravens, from which its lyrics were clearly derived. There are only two scavengers in “The Twa Corbies”, but this is the least of the differences between the songs, though they do begin the same. Rather than commenting on the loyalty of the knight's beasts, the corbies tell that the hawk and the hound have forsaken their master, and are off chasing other game, while his mistress has already taken another lover. The ravens are therefore given an undisturbed meal, as nobody else knows where the man lies, or even that he is dead. They talk in gruesome detail about the meal they will make of him, plucking out his eyes and using his hair for their nests. Some themes believed to be portrayed in "Twa Corbies" are: the fragility of life, the idea life goes on after death, and a more pessimistic viewpoint on life. The loneliness and despair of the song are summed up in the final couplets;

O'er his banes [bones], when they are bare,
The wind sall [shall] blaw for evermair

There are a few different versions of this anonymously authored poem. The full text of at least one version of the poem is as follows:

As I was walking all alane,
I heard twa corbies making a mane;
The tane> unto the t'other say,
‘Where sall we gang and dine to-day?’
‘In behint yon auld fail dyke,
I wot there lies a new slain knight;
And naebody kens that he lies there,
But his hawk, his hound, and lady fair.
‘His hound is to the hunting gane,
His hawk to fetch the wild-fowl hame,
His lady's taen another mate,
So we may mak our dinner sweet.
‘Ye'll sit on his white hause-bane,
And I'll pike out his bonny blue een;
Wi ae lock o his gowden hair
We'll theek our nest when it grows bare.
‘Mony a one for him makes mane,
But nane sall ken where he is gane;
Oer his white banes, when they are bare,
The wind sall blaw for evermair.’

This ballad was one of 25 traditional works included in Ballads Weird and Wonderful (1912) and illustrated by Vernon Hill.


Ewan MacColl

The English and Scottish Popular Ballads (The Child Ballads) Volume I
Ewan MacColl sang The Three Ravens on The English and Scottish Popular Ballads: Vol. 1 Child Ballads (1961): »The first printed copy of this ballad is in Ravenscroft's Melismata, London 1611. In The Popular Music of the Olden Time, 1855, Chappell remarks that the ballad was still so popular in some parts of the country that he had “been favoured with a variety of copies of it, written down from memory, and all differing in some respects, both as to words and tune, but with sufficient resemblance to prove a similar origin.” Motherwell in his Minstrelsy, 1827, describes it as being “very popular in Scotland”, where it is more commonly known as The Twa Corbies. The version here is given from Kidson's Traditional Tunes, 1891, and comes from the village of Stoney-Middleton, Derbyshire.«

Artist Video Ewan MacColl

"The Three Ravens" or "Twa Corbies" have been performed and recorded by artists such as Heather Alexander, Annwn, A Chorus of Two, Ayreheart, Damh the Bard, Bishi, Boiled in Lead, Scott Boswell, Djazia Satour, Cécile Corbel, Clam Chowder, The Corries, Crooked Mouth, Alfred Deller, The Duplets, Frances Faye, Richard Dyer-Bennet, Fiddler's Dram, Ray & Archie Fisher, John Fleagle and Ewan MacColl, John Harle, The Hare and The Moon, Peter, Paul and Mary, Bert Jansch, Joel Cohen, Kalin Sivov, Andrew King, Mandala Folk, Marie Little, Malinky, Old Blind Dogs, Omnia, Kate Price, Schelmish, Sol Invictus, Sonne Hagal, Sequester, Steeleye Span, Andreas Scholl, Hamish Imlach, Libera (choir), Richard Thompson, Ariella Uliano, Diana Obscura, Terre di mezzo, Kenneth McKellar, Custer LaRue and The Baltimore Consort, Merry Wives of Windsor, Sportive Tricks, The Creepy Bard, The Sands Family, Alice Moving Under Skies, Astral Weeks, Winterfylleth and Faun. The album Farewell Aldebaran contains a song clearly based on Three Ravens but the lyric credits go to Judy Henske, music by Jerry Yester.

In popular culture

Translations and adaptations in other languages

Both "The Three Ravens" and "Twa Corbies" have been translated to other languages, typically all sung to the same melody as Twa Corbies, or that of the Breton song called An Alarc'h (The Swan).

Known versions include:

Archie Fisher Ray Fisher

Far Over the Forth
Ray and Archie Fisher sang Twa Corbies on the EP Far Over the Forth (1962): »When is a ballad not a ballad? Answer—when it isn't sung. The Twa Corbies has for long been regarded as one of the most flawless as it is one of the grimmest of all our ballads; but it wasn't being sung. No tune appeared to survive in oral tradition and attempts at setting it remained literary, academic and dead. Then R.M. Blythman (the Scots poet “Thurso Berwick”) set it [in ca 1956] to this marvellously sombre old Breton tune, An Alarc'h, The Swan, learned from the Breton folk-singer Zaig Montjarret. The result was astonishingly right and The Twa Corbies has passed into the repertoire of our younger folk-singers. It is related to the English Three Ravens

This recording was included on the compilation (New) Electric Muse (1975/1996): »'The Twa Corbies', number 26 in Child's collection, was set by Ray and Archie to a Breton folk tune, 'An Alarch' (The Swan) learnt from Zaig Montjarret and later popularised by the Breton celtic harp-player Alan Stivell. It was one of the first in which a transatlantic-based rhythm was married to a traditional British text. The song is related, through a different version, to the Corpus Christi Carol, or 'Down in Yon Forest'. Pushkin reworked the first three verses into Russian.«

Jim Causley Emily Portman

Blood and Honey

The Devil's Interval (Lauren McCormick, Emily Portman & Jim Causley) sang Two Crows on Blood and Honey (2006): »Harry Adams sang The Three Crows to Bob and Jacqueline Paton in 1977 calling it “an old pub song”. Some people think it is related to the ancient ballad The Three Ravens but in our scholarly opinions we feel the connection is highly dubious! Emily folked it up a bit, added some lines and lost a crow along the way.«

Jean Redpath

Jean Redpath
Jean Redpath sang Twa Corbies on her Scottish Ballad Book (1962): »Proof that not all of the “big ballads” are big in both form and feeling, Twa Corbies owes much of the power of its impact to its very brevity. In contrast to the more hopeful Three Ravens—that form of the ballad which is more widely known—this version presents in five compact stanzas its hard and cynical comment and captures the very spirit of the Anglo-Saxon fatalism, especially in the terrible finality of the last two lines. In this form the ballad is rare in Britain, has no European analogies and is practically unknown in Canada. The popularity of The Three Ravens and its variants in America has been attributed to minstrel stage burlesque. Since it is difficult to explain how such apparently restricted oral tradition has resulted in such a perfect and unique poem, it has been suggested that Twa Corbies is in fact a formal composition, perhaps from the pen of Motherwell. Whatever its origin, this ballad, start and desolate as it is, remains one of the most arresting I know.«


Malinky: 3 Ravens
Malinky recorded Three Ravens as the title track of their second album, 3 Ravens (2002): »Karine [Polwart] first heard this sung by Susan Thores. It's related to the much better known ballad The Twa Corbies. Our arrangement takes its inspiration from the brilliant Breton band Skolvan.«


In Colour
Cara recorded Three Ravens / Ravin' in the Bathroom on In Colour (2004) and In Full Swing (2007): »Gudrun [Walther] discovered this song on Malinky's CD Three Ravens. These cite Susan Thores as the source. The song is related to the Scottish ballad Twa Corbies, which can be found in several variations in the Child ballad collection. Claus [Steinort] composed the tune Ravin' in the Bathroom one morning while drying his hair.«

Maddy Prior (Steeleye Span)

Steeleye Span
Steeleye Span, Hark! The Village Wait (1970): »... otherwise known as the Two Ravens, and sometimes called The Three Ravens. First printed in [Scott's] Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border in 1803 it is one of the most popular of the Scottish ballads. For those unused to the dialect the two birds are discussing the pros and cons of eating a newly slain knight. Ashley Hutchings: “This goes back to the 13th Century at least, and it was recorded at Tim's suggestion.” Why is it particular about a knight? Why not a footsoldier? “Songs that go back a long way are usually about Lords and Ladies, possibly because they were a great source of interest to the people, rich and poor.”«

Maddy Prior, Year (1993): »Reflection on death in its physical reality is known to the Buddhists and Hindus, but in the West only in Medieval times was it dealt with directly and evoked by skeletons carved on graves and gruesome images of Death the Reaper. In these more antiseptic times there is little in this line and flowers, wreaths and gentle doves cloud the unacceptable thought of our mortal destination. This song dates from earlier times and is for me a brilliant examination of decay. [R.M. Blythman] set the stark old Scottish words to this moody Breton tune and we have amplified its Gothic atmosphere. ‘Corbies’ means ‘carrion crows’ and ‘hause bane’ is a ‘breast bone’.«

New Electric Muse II
New Electric Muse II (1997): »On their 1996 album Time, in another example of studio polish lending new perspective to the tradition, Steeleye Span plunges the imagery of "scraggy feathered mean beaked carrion crows tearing at the tender flesh of a dead, deserted knight" into an orchestral cauldron forged by the latest version of their electrified line-up... King Arthur's children facing up to their own mortality, perhaps?«

Incidentally, a German folk band called Hoodie Crows recorded just another Child ballad, Lord Ronald. Let us also revisit two strange tales from Steeleye Span's 2019 album, Est'd 1969 (The Boy and the Mantle, The Laily Worm and the Mackerel of the Sea) and former Span fiddler Peter Knight's 2020 album with the Gigspanner Big Band (Betsy Bell and Mary Gray, Earl Brand).

Lord Randall

Hoodie Crows

Hoodie Crows

»I learned this song of the dangers of Scottish cuisine from the inimitable Aaron Jones at Castle Fürsteneck. He got this version of this classic ballad from the Macmath collection.«

Hoodie Crows @ FROG

 Listen to  Lord Randall  from:
       Cara", Cara (Live), Lynched, 
       Vicki Swan & Jonny Dyer

 Watch  Lord Randall  from:
       Cara, Martin Carthy, Dick Gaughan,
       Joe Heaney,  Lankum, Ewan MacColl,
       Reg Meuross, Alasdair Roberts , 
       Swan & Dyer, Lucy Ward
Lord Randall (© Mainly Norfolk) 

Classic English and Scottish Ballads

Lord Randall (Child No. 12)

Jean Ritchie, vocal

Roud 10; also known as "Lord Rendal"; from FW 2302, 1960/SF 40145, 2003

»"Lord Randall" is a well-known Child ballad. The lord in the story has had various names over the years but has come to be known as Lord Randall. This is another ballad found throughout Europe. Kenneth Goldstein points to an Italian text ("L'avvelenato" ["The Poisoned Man"]) first published in the early 17th century and stated that the earliest English-language version was printed in the late 18th century.

In the song a son has been poisoned and is being asked by his mother about his state. Knowing he is dying, he tells his mother whom to leave his belongings to. The question-and-answer pattern of "Lord Randall" was used in later folk songs. Bob Dylan based his song "A Hard Rain's Gonna Fall" on "Lord Randall."

Jean Ritchie
Viper, Kentucky, native Jean Ritchie (1922-2015) was an important popularizer of the Appalachian dulcimer in the United States. She was a singer, songwriter, song collector, and author. Growing up, she was highly influenced by her very musical family. After college at the University of Kentucky, she moved to New York City and became a social worker, where she used the music from home in her work. Gradually she began to perform concerts for the public.

Ritchie recorded numerous albums over the years for a variety of labels. She also traveled to both Ireland England in 1952 on a Fulbright scholarship (with her husband George Pickow) to record traditional singers. SHe was the author and editor of a number of songbooks and books on how to play the Appalachian dulcimer. Jean learned this ballad from her uncle Jason.«

Artist Audio
"Classic English and Scottish Ballads from Smithsonian Folkways (from The Francis James Child Collection)", Smithsonian Folkways, 2017

Deacon, John Clare and the Folk Tradition
»This is Child, No. 12, a truly international ballad story which occurs in many traditions across the world. In the Journal of the Folk Song Society of 1905 (No. 10, p. 43), Miss Gilchrist gives various possible explanations for the name of the victim being generally Lord Randall, Ronald, Rendall or Renald in the English-language versions. The story passed into the music hall where it was well known as 'Henry my Son', and there are several recorded versions in which the victim is referred to as King Henry.«

George Deacon "John Clare and the Folk Tradition", Francis Boutle, 2002

"Lord Randall", or "Lord Randal", (Roud 10, Child 12) is an Anglo-Scottish border ballad consisting of dialogue between a young Lord and his mother. Similar ballads can be found across Europe in many languages, including Danish, German, Magyar, Irish, Swedish, and Wendish. Italian variants are usually titled "L'avvelenato" ("The Poisoned Man") or "Il testamento dell'avvelenato" ("The Poisoned Man's Will"), the earliest known version being a 1629 setting by Camillo il Bianchino, in Verona.

Lord Randall returns home to his mother after visiting his lover. Through the mother's inquiry, it is gradually revealed that the Lord has been poisoned by his lover, who has fed him poisoned eels. In some variants, Lord Randall dictates his last will and testament after realizing he has been poisoned. His lover's motive for poisoning him is never discussed.

In 1962, Bob Dylan modeled his song "A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall" on "Lord Randall", introducing each verse with variants of the introductory lines to each verse of "Lord Randall". Dylan's ballad is often interpreted as a reaction to the Cuban Missile Crisis. Dylan himself disclaimed this as an oversimplification, and in reality, Dylan first publicly performed the song a month before the crisis.

Lord Randall

Lord Randall and John Blunt must be among the more widespread story-ideas in the folk consciousness, the stories remaining more or less the same and varying according to locale and-or the individual imagination of whoever sings them. […] I have to thank Phil and Sid of Edinburgh for the original idea which led me recasting the tune sung to Lord Randall, known as My Wee Croodlin' Doo.
– Martin Carthy

Child Ballad #12. Thought to be one of the oldest traditional ballads of England, it might be about Randolph, 6th Earl of Chester, who died in 1232. A young lord is poisoned by his ‘love’. In the song he bequeaths his estate to his family and justice to his poisoner.
– Vicki Swan and Jonny Dyer

The Boy and the Mantle

"The Boy and the Mantle" is Child ballad number 29, an Arthurian story. Unlike the ballads before it, and like "King Arthur and King Cornwall" and "The Marriage of Sir Gawain" immediately after it in the collection, this is not a folk ballad but a song from professional minstrels.

A boy comes to King Arthur's court with an enchanted mantle that can not be worn by an unfaithful wife. Guinevere dons it, and so does every other lady in the court; only one can wear it, and only after she confesses to kissing her husband before their marriage. Other boys also bring a wild boar, that can not be cut by a cuckold's knife, and a cup that a cuckold can not drink from without spilling it, and these also reveal that every wife at court has been unfaithful.

The magical test of fidelity which virtually every woman fails is a common motif, being found first in fabliau and romances, such as The Faerie Queene, where Florimel's girdle fits the pattern, and Amadis of Gaul, where no one unfaithful to his or her first love can pass an archway.

Isabel Lilian Gloag: The Magic Mantle (1898)

An Arthurian tale where, whilst in Carlisle (he wasn’t always in Cornwall!), a boy happens along with the means to test the court as to whether they are faithful to their spouses or not. The three tests are for the ladies to don the “Mantle Veritas” with embarrassing results if they’re not constant and true, and the men to try to cut into a boar's head or to drink from a magic horn successfully. Sometimes the latter two tests were to determine whether a man was a cuckold or not, but Maddy and I decided that all the tests would be for fidelity. The chorus and the main instrumental theme were written by us and developed in rehearsal but the verse melody is traditional. We were fortunate to have the addition of the eminent harpsichordist Sophie Yates, which puts us beautifully in a ‘court-like’ place even though there weren’t any harpsichords at that time! (Mind you, there weren’t any electric guitars either!)
– Steeleye Span

The Laily Worm and the Machrel of the Sea

"The Laily Worm and the Machrel of the Sea" is Child ballad number 36.

Steeleye Span

Steeleye Span @ FROG

 Watch  The Boy and the Mantle  from:
      Steeleye Span

The Boy and the Mantle (© Mainly Norfolk) 

 Watch  The Laily Worm  from:
      Rachel McDonough

The Laily Worm (© Mainly Norfolk) 

 Watch  Betsy Bell and Mary Gray  from:
      All Souls Night

Betsy Bell and Mary Gray (© Mainly Norfolk) 

 Watch  Earl Brand  from:
      Gigspanner Big Band

Earl Brand (© Mainly Norfolk) 

Gigspanner Big Band

Peter Knight's Gigspanner Big Band: Natural Invention

Peter Knight @ FROG

A young man, transformed into a laily (loathly, or loathsome) worm, tells his story: his father married an evil woman as his stepmother, and she transformed him into a worm and his sister into a mackerel. His sister combed his hair every Saturday. He has killed seven knights, and if the man he was speaking to was not his father, he would be the eighth. His father sends for the stepmother, who claims his children are at court. He makes her use her silver wand to turn his son back, and then her magic horn to summon the fish, although the daughter holds back rather than let the stepmother transform her again. The father burns the stepmother at the stake.

This ballad has motifs in common with "The Laidly Worm of Spindleston Heugh", "Kemp Owyne", and more with "Allison Gross", but is an independent one, and a traditional one, unretouched by literary forms. The sister can comb the hair in "Allison Gross" because she still has her human form; Francis James Child believed that part of the original tale has been lost, in which she could assume her human form again for part of the week. The horn has a logical plot function in this tale, unlike "Allison Gross". It is psychologically sound that the fish wishes to avoid her stepmother, but that plot twist leaves her still a fish; Child believed that, here, also, part of the tale was lost.

The Laily Worm

This is Child Ballad 36, a song which he describes as “mutilated and defaced”, but pure tradition. Much reading of ballads makes you fill in, mentally, missing parts, but here we’ve attempted to make the story clearer, and in our usual way put tunes to it of our own devising. Worms, serpents and dragons are sometimes interchangeable and there are many stories from around the world where characters are shape shifted into these loathsome creatures. Alison Gross, another ballad we have sung, takes revenge on a lover’s rejection by turning him into a worm, but she also has the ability to change him back again and the similarity will be why Child has placed these ballads next to each other in his collection. But ballads, like fairy tales, are not driven by the need for happy endings and, if they intend to teach about life, then ballad similarities may be suggesting options of different outcomes.
– Steeleye Span

Bessy Bell and Mary Gray

Bessy Bell and Mary Gray are "twa bonnie lassies", the subject of one of the Child Ballads. According to the ballad, Bessy and Mary were daughters of two Perthshire gentlemen, who in 1666 built themselves a bower to avoid catching a devastating plague. The girls were supplied with food by a lad in love with both of them; the lad caught the plague and gave it to them, and all three sickened and died.

Two similar hills near Omagh, County Tyrone (Northern Ireland) were named after Bessy Bell and Mary Gray by Scottish immigrants who went to Ireland to make their passage to America. Sliabh Troim ('mountain of elder') is the original Irish name of Bessy Bell, also recorded as Sliab Toad. There also exist twin hills in Staunton, Virginia which were named after the girls by Scottish immigrants. Two adjacent volcanic cones in the Auckland volcanic field, New Zealand, (Otara Hill and Green Hill) were referred to by 19th-century European settlers as Bessy Bell and Mary Gray (See 1859 map).

Betsy Bell and Mary Gray

The most interesting aspect of this traditional song is what it doesn’t reveal. Based on fact, Betsy’s and Mary’s endeavour to escape the plague by building a remote bower was undone by the arrival of a lover bearing food and gifts, and subsequently the plague, which was believed to have been carried on a necklace taken from a victim.
– Gigspanner Big Band

Earl Brand

"Earl Brand" (Child 7, Roud 23) is a pseudo-historical English ballad. The hero, who may be Earl Brand, Lord Douglas, or Lord William, flees with the heroine, who may be Lady Margaret. A Carl Hood may betray them to her father, but they are always pursued. The hero kills the pursuers and is mortally wounded. He gets the heroine to his mother's house, but when he dies, she dies of sorrow.

This ballad has many similarities with Child ballad 8, Erlinton, where the lovers succeed in their escape, and the fight scenes often have details in common across variants. Francis James Child only reluctantly separated them, but concluded that because the lovers' assailants are her kin in Earl Brand and strangers in Erlinton, they were separate types.

Scandavian variants often have a detail that Child believed was originally contained but lost from the English ballad: the hero warns the heroine not to speak his name, and when he is about to kill her last brother, she begs him by name to let the brother live to bear the news, and this causes his death. These variants include the Danish Ribold and Guldborg and Hildebrand and Hilde and the German Waltharius and Þiðrekssaga. Auld Carl Hood is also an old man in the Scandavian variants; he appears to be a malicious figure of Odin or Woden.

Many variants of this ballad end with flowers growing from the lovers' grave. This is a common motif for all manner of ballads having no other connection, such as Fair Margaret and Sweet William, Lord Thomas and Fair Annet, Fair Janet, and Lord Lovel, and in tales and ballads found throughout Europe and parts of Asia. This is found in the legend of Tristan and Iseult, which is sometimes supposed to be the source, but there is no evidence for its being older in the romances than in the ballad. Frederick William Burton drew upon a Danish ballad of this type for his "Meeting on the Turret Stairs", depicting the parting of the lovers before the fight.

Earl Brand

Another discovery from Cecil Sharp’s Appalachian collection. A beautiful tune, but a tragic story. However, we take the image of the rose and the briar to symbolise love conquering all in the end.
– Gigspanner Big Band

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia [,,,,,]. Wikipedia® is a registered trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., a non-profit organization.

Text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License.

Date: January 2021.

Photo Credits: (1) "The Three Ravens", (2) "Twa Corbies", (3) Laoise O'Brien, (4) Ewan MacColl, (5) Archie Fisher, (6) Ray Fisher, (7) Jim Causley, (8) Lauren McCormick & Emily Portman, (9) Jean Redpath, (12) Maddy Prior, (15) Hoodie Crows, (16) Jean Ritchie, (18) "The Boy and the Mantle", (19) Steeleye Span, (20) "The Laily Worm and the Machrel of the Sea", (21) Peter Knight's Gigspanner Big Band, (22) "Bessy Bell and Mary Gray", (23) "Earl Brand", (unknown/website); (10) Malinky, (11) Cara (by Walkin' Tom); (13) "The Three Ravens", (14) "Twa Corbies", (17) "Lord Randall", (by ABC Notations).

FolkWorld Homepage German Content English Content Editorial & Commentary News & Gossip Letters to the Editors CD & DVD Reviews Book Reviews Folk for Kidz Folk & Roots Online Guide - Archives & External Links Search FolkWorld About Contact Privacy Policy

FolkWorld - Home of European Music
FolkWorld Homepage
Layout & Idea of FolkWorld © The Mollis - Editors of FolkWorld