Wendy Grossman | Roseville Fair

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Roseville Fair

by Wendy Grossman

Traditional and American and British contemporary folk on guitar, banjo, concertina, and foot.
Genre: Folk: Traditional Folk
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Roseville Fair (Bill Staines)
3:19 album only
2. The Lark in the Morning (Irish traditional)
2:10 album only
3. Seven Gypsies (English traditional)
4:41 album only
4. The False Young Man (traditional)
2:44 album only
5. A Scarborough Settler's Lament (Canadian traditional/Sandy Glend
3:39 album only
6. The minstrel (Graham Pratt)
4:17 album only
7. Cameron Highlanders (Scottish traditionaln)
2:25 album only
8. One Morning in May (traditional/Jean Ritchie)
4:01 album only
9. Sir Patrick Spens (traditional)
4:29 album only
10. Archie's March/The Gravel Walk (Archie Fisher / traditional)
2:35 album only
11. Turning Toward the Morning (Gordon Bok)
5:54 album only


Album Notes
Please see my Web site for updates to these liner notes, current bookings, instructional pages on banjo and guitar tunings and playing the autoharp, downloadable MP3s, and more.

Original liner notes for Roseville Fair
An itinerant musician's survival kit has to include such eclectic skills as knowing how to cut and butter an onion bagel while driving down the highway at sixty miles an hour, instant comprehension of the geography of any area one happens to find oneself in, weight lifiting, and finding new material. My replies to questions like, "Where do you find your songs?" are generally vague mumbles about "other singers, records, books," trailing off into a cloud of dust. In sheer gratitude for the number of songs I have begged, borrowed, stolen, and otherwise learned from other people, I'd like to be more specific here about my sources.

Roseville Fair us probably my current favorite of all of Bill Staines's songs, which is a hard spot to fill because I like so many of them. The Lark in the Morning is a fairly common Irish jig that I used to hear played on late weekend nights at the Unmuzzled Ox in Ithaca, NY. Seven Gypsies I got from Gordon Tyrrell of Halifax, West Yorkshire, by surreptitiously taping him one night at an English folk club (he has since recorded it). The False Young Man I found in Cecil Sharp's English Folk Songs Collected in the Southern Appalachians. A Scarborough Settler's Lament was given me by Wendy Price in Dewsbury, West Yorkshire. Sandy Glendenning, credited with writing the song in about 1850 in Edith Fowke's The Penguin Book of Canadian Folk Songs, must have been from somewhere around Langholm in Scotland near the border, because when I sang there my host took me around and showed me all the landmarks mentioned in the song. I heard Graham and Eileen Pratt at the Islington Folk Club in London in October, 1977, and immediately asked them for The Minstrel.

Cameron Highlanders and Archie's March/The Gravel Walk were both learned off records of The Boys of the Lough, slowed down to half speed so I could catch all the notes. Bill Steele of Ithaca, NY, gave me a tape of Berkeleyite Janet Smith singing One Morning in May with someone else in harmony, saying it was Jean Ritchie's version of the song. I learned it, and was later told that, "Jean Ritchie's tune makes a great harmony to the one you sing..." (that's the folk process for you). Sir Patrick Spens was on a record of Nic Jones with a stunning guitar arrangement; the persent version came about following a suggestion by Jon Wilcox. "Archie's March" is to be found on a record of Archie Fisher as a break in the middle of a long ballad. I never did learn the correct title, though I'm sure it must have one. Turning Toward the Morning is a somewhat wry song of comfort by Gordon Bok that has stuck by me through it all.

Being one of the wordier people you're likely to meet, I am surprised to find that five years on the road leave me with little to say other than an awful lot of thank yous. To all the people who have ever given me a bed for the night, fed me a meal, taught me a song, or given me a swift kick in the right direction when I needed it, thank you, and I hope I can return the favor one of these days. To the people at Springfield Sound, thanks for making the recording process so comfortable. To Lyn Stocks for the front cover. To Paul Mills and Chuck Garvin, who've done a lot of work beyond the call of duty in helping to get this record out while I am pursuing my itinerancy, thank you is neither adequate nor meaningful. But thanks anyway.

Wendy Grossman
Ithaca, NY
July, 1980



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If you like DE DANANN or Pentangle,you must buy this Wendy's CD.

Eli N Selling

If you are going to record the music Of Bill Staines and Gordon Bok you had better know what you are doing. Wendy Grossman not only covers these songs with true respect and beauty, she adds her own beautiful touch as well. I'm a harsh critic when covering the greats, and Wendy Grossman does an outstanding job. (p.s. I wish she did more of this)