Wednesday, April 17, 2013

A musical comparison

Thanks to my fused spine and nerve damage in my left leg, there are nights when I just can't sleep well.  No matter how tired I am, my body says to me, "You got nothing coming!" and nags at me until I have to get up to ease the aches and pains.  I try to make the best use of times like that by working on my book (which is entering its final stage of formatting prior to publication), or washing up in the kitchen, or doing other things (if they don't hurt too much!) to pass the time.

This morning, in the wee dark hours, I turned to YouTube to listen to one of my favorite modern Scottish tunes, 'The Queen of Argyle' by Silly Wizard.  Here it is.

As I was listening to it, I couldn't help but notice in the sidebar how many other artists had covered this song since it was first written.  I decided to see how musicians from different countries and cultures had modified it to suit their tastes.  That turned out to be a lot of fun.  For a start, here's what American Celtic rock group Tempest made of it.

Heading back across the Atlantic, in much slower and more meditative mood, here's the late John Wright from England with a beautifully plaintive version.  After a brief introduction, the music begins at the 1m.5s. mark.

Finally, let's hop back across the Atlantic to Newfoundland, Canada, home of many New World Celtic groups and singers.  Here's Fine Crowd with their rendition of this lovely song.

Some very interesting variations on a theme, no?



Anonymous said...

Very interesting! Silly Wizard will always be a favourite of mine though.

Stretch said...

I caught Silly Wizard on their farewell tour back in *mumble-mumble*

For my money their version of Golden-Golden is one of the most romantic of Celtic songs. Play that while wearing a kilt and no lassie can resist.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the memories... Love this particular song but have not played/sang it for years. A friend and I will get together soon to do a mandolyn/fiddle (me!) version... He's got a lovely voice and a plaintiff style on the mandolyn. Now we need some 'rhythm', maybe spoons/bodhran. Both fairly easy to play.