3
   

Songs out of time (not out of tune)

 
 
Seizan
 
Reply Thu 5 Aug, 2021 06:11 am
Hi Folks,

Here is an idea to mull over a bit. Let's enjoy a bit of fantasy...

You are suddenly and without explanation transported to, say, 150 years ago. We will assume you are in an English-speaking country, and for that time, the language and diction is not too far different from today (outside of terms that do not exist at that time).

Possibly you are on a ship -- a merchant ship, the HMS SomethingOrOther, or some less attractive prospect. You have been found out and dragged before the Captain as a possible stowaway.

You are dressed strangely, have no spendable money, your wallet and ID etc. are worthless curiosities, and there is no way to communicate with your own time period... Even your accent (or lack thereof) is a bit suspicious.

You are lost, penniless, hungry, and possibly on the verge of being arrested for vagrancy and perhaps even "lunacy" unless you come up with some plan to survive until you can figure this whole thing out. On the ship, you might be thrown in the brig, or overboard.

You decide to offer to sing for a meal at a local pub (or to entertain the Captain and his mates at their meal). You can play guitar or piano well enough to accompany yourself, and your voice isn't bad.

But all you know are 20th and 21st century songs...

What song or songs do you choose to sing that the audience (most of which are sailors, or drunks, brawlers, and "ladies of the evening") will not only understand, but appreciate?

Bear in mind that NONE of these songs have yet been written, the tempo and rhythm are new and strange, and you may have to change some words to suit the times.

For example, S&G's "Sound of Silence" might be OK for a quiet beginning, but changing "... and in the neon light I saw" to "but in the lighting flash I saw", and other more time-appropriate changes.

"Where have all the flowers gone?" might being tears to the eyes of some hardened sailors or soldiers. Maybe Cat Steven's "Morning has Broken", or something by Paul McCartney? Perhaps a few Oscar Brand rowdy sailor's songs?

What do you think? Imagine yourself in that position -- singing such songs for a rough audience, and your songs are all first-time-ever-to-be-heard...

More?
 
izzythepush
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Aug, 2021 07:29 am
@Seizan,
Merchant ships do not start HMS.

That’s the Royal Navy HMS stands for Her/His Majesty’s Ship.

Merchant ships start with something else depending on their purpose.

MV, (Merchant vessel), being the most common.
edgarblythe
 
  3  
Reply Thu 5 Aug, 2021 12:17 pm
Fire as done by the Pointer Sisters

I'm ridin' in your cart, you play the harmonica
You're pullin' me close, I just say no
I say I don't like it, but you know I'm a liar
'Cause when we kiss, Ooooh, fire

Late at night, you're takin' me home
You say you wanna stay, I say I want to be alone
I say I don't love you, ut you know I'm a liar
'Cause when we kiss, ooooh, fire

You had a hold on me, right from the start
A grip so tight, I couldn't tear it apart
My nerves all jumpin', actin' like a fool
Well, your kisses they burn, but my heart stays cool

Well, Romeo and Juliet, Samson and Delilah
Baby you can bet, a love they couldn't deny
My words say split, but my words they lie
'Cause when we kiss, ooooh, fire

Ooooh, fire
Kisses like fire
Burn me up with fire
I like what you're doin' now
Fire
Touchin' me
Fire
Touchin' me
Burnin' me
Fire
Take me home
0 Replies
 
Seizan
 
  2  
Reply Thu 5 Aug, 2021 02:31 pm
@izzythepush,
The comma between "merchant ship, HMS etc., meant "or". Sorry.

But I hope the rest was clear enough.
0 Replies
 
hightor
 
  3  
Reply Thu 5 Aug, 2021 02:47 pm
Chega de Saudade by Antônio Carlos Jobim (originally in Portuguese)

No more blues, I'm going back home
No, no more blues, I promise no more to roam
Home is where the heart is
The funny part is my heart's been right there all along

No more tears and no more sighs
And no more fears, I'll say no more goodbyes
If travel beckons me, I swear I'm gonna refuse
I'm gonna settle down and there'll be no more blues

Everyday while I am far away
My thoughts turn homeward, forever homeward
I've traveled 'round the world in search of happiness
But all the happiness I've found was in my hometown

No more blues, I'm going back home
No, no more dues, I'm through with all my wandering now
I'll settle down and never roam and find a man and build a home
When we settle down, there'll be no more blues
Nothing but happiness when we settle down, there'll be no more blues

Everyday while I am far away
My thoughts turn homeward, forever homeward
I've traveled 'round the world in search of happiness
But all the happiness I've found was in my hometown

No more blues, I am going back home
No, no, no more dues, I'm through with all my wandering now
I'll settle down and never roam and find a man and build me a home
When we settle down, there'll be no more blues

When we settle down
When we settle down
When we settle down
There'll be no more blues
There'll be no more blues, blues



Beyond the Sea by Charles Trenet and Jack Lawrence

Somewhere beyond the sea
Somewhere waiting for me
My lover stands on golden sands
And watches the ships that go sailing

Somewhere beyond the sea
She's there watching for me
If I could fly like birds on high
Then straight to her arms I'd go sailing

It's far beyond a star
It's near beyond the moon
I know beyond a doubt
My heart will lead me there soon

We'll meet beyond the shore
We'll kiss just like before
Happy we'll be beyond the sea
And never again I'll go sailing

I know beyond a doubt
My heart will lead me there soon
And we'll meet, I know we'll meet beyond the shore
We'll kiss just as before

Happy we'll be beyond the sea
And never again I'll go sailing
No more sailing
So long, sailing, sailing, sailing
Goodbye, farewell, my friend, no more sailing
So long, sailing, no more sailing
No more, farewell
Auf Wiedersehen to you
No more sailing
No more
Oh, no more sailing
No more, no more
No more sailing
No more, one more time
No more sailing
But if she comes back, if she comes back
What a beautiful thing, what a crazy thing
Because there are less fishes swimming in the sea
Than the kisses I will give her on her mouth

In my arms, the hugs will be a million of hugs
Tight like this, glued like this, silent like this
Hugs and kisses and tenderness without end
To end with this thing, of living far away from me
I dont want this thing anymore, of you living like that
Let's forget this thing, of you living without me
I dont want this thing anymore, of you living far away from me
0 Replies
 
jespah
 
  5  
Reply Thu 5 Aug, 2021 03:25 pm
@Seizan,
Stand By Me by Ben E. King

When the night has come, and the land is dark
And the moon is the only light we'll see
No, I won't be afraid, oh, I won't be afraid
Just as long as you stand, stand by me
So darlin', darlin' stand by me
Oh stand by me
Oh stand, stand by me, stand by me

If the sky that we look upon should tumble and fall
Or the mountain should crumble to the sea
I won't cry, I won't cry, no, I won't shed a tear
Just as long as you stand, stand by me
And darlin', darlin' stand by me
Oh stand by me
Whoa stand now, stand by me, stand by me

And darlin', darlin' stand by me
Oh stand by me
Oh stand now, stand by me, stand by me

Whenever you're in trouble won't you stand by me
Oh stand by me
Whoa stand now, oh stand, stand by me...

Whenever you're in trouble won't you stand by me
Oh stand by me
Whoa stand now, oh stand, stand by me


It's also pretty easy to sing, even if you don't have much of a voice.
0 Replies
 
Seizan
 
  2  
Reply Fri 6 Aug, 2021 02:57 pm
We have to be sure all the terms and phrases used in any songs will be understood in context by people of that era. Otherwise, the audience gets bored trying to figure out the song meaning and you get thrown out of the pub, off the ship, or to the wolves...

"Blue" may not mean sadness or loneliness but something entirely different, if it had an emotional meaning back then. "Baby" may not mean "my beloved" in the context of "darling".

"Stand by me" is excellent!

I feel "Let it Be" by Sir Paul would be a hit.

Elton's "Saturday Night's Alright for Fighting" would be a great one for the rowdy crowd. I'd have to change the words "diesel train / switchblade / motorbike" but I bet I could figure something out at "no-notice or your life"...

:-)
hightor
 
  2  
Reply Sun 8 Aug, 2021 06:26 am
@Seizan,
Quote:

"Blue" may not mean sadness or loneliness but something entirely different, if it had an emotional meaning back then.


Apparently it did:

Quote:
blues (n.2) "depression, low spirits," 1741, from blue (adj.1) in the sense "low-spirited" (c. 1400).

source

I should have edited out the extraneous Vegas stuff in Beyond the Sea — rather unfitting but the four line stanzas seem okay.
Seizan
 
  1  
Reply Sun 8 Aug, 2021 04:11 pm
@hightor,
Oh, I thought the extra lyrics to "Beyond the Sea" were rather interesting. I never knew there was more to it. Thanks!

I accept "blue", I wasn't sure. Maybe baby, too.

"Johnny, I Hardly Knew Ye" might get you applause and an extra mug of beer in some places, or shot in others. But I think most folk songs would seem entertaining enough to save your life.
0 Replies
 
Joeblow
 
  3  
Reply Mon 9 Aug, 2021 08:34 am
Dennis is a menace with his "anyone for tennis?"
And beseeching me to come and keep the score
And Maud saya "Oh Lord! I'm so terribly bored!"
I really can't stand it anymore
I'm going out to dinner, with a gorgeous singer
To a little place I've found down by the quay
Her name is Patricia, she calls herself Delicia
And the reason isn't very hard to see
She says God made her a sinner just to keep fat men thinner
As they tumble down in heaps before her feet
They hang around in groups like battle-weary troops
One can often see them queue right down the street
You see Patricia, or Delicia, not only is a singer
She also removes all her clothing
For Patricia is the best stripper in town
And with a swing of her hips she started to strip
To tremendous applause she took off her drawers
And with a lick of her lips she undid all the clips
Threw it all in the air, and everyone stared
And as the last piece of clothing fell to the floor
The police were banging on the door
On a Saturday night, in eighteen sixty-four
Take it away boys!
But poor Patricia was arrested and everyone detested
The manner in which she was exposed
And later on in court, well, everybody thought
A summer run in jail would be proposed
But the judge said, "Patricia
Or may I say, Delicia
The facts of this case lie before me
Case dismissed, this girl was in her working clothes!"
And with a swing of her hips, she started to strip
To tremendous applause she took off her drawers
And with a lick of her lips she undid all her clips
Threw it all in the air, and everyone stared
And as the last piece of clothing fell to the floor
The police were yelling out for more!
On a Saturday night in eighteen sixty-four
On a Saturday night in eighteen sixty-four

Songwriters: Chris de Burgh
Patricia the Stripper lyrics © BMG Rights Management

0 Replies
 
Joeblow
 
  2  
Reply Tue 10 Aug, 2021 06:43 am
Uh oh. Is it off to the stocks with me?
Seizan
 
  1  
Reply Tue 10 Aug, 2021 03:36 pm
@Joeblow,
Not today. Saved by the date, 1864. Was the song written around that time? A bit risque for the Civil War era, but I think the ruffian crowd would shout for an encore...

:-)
Joeblow
 
  2  
Reply Wed 11 Aug, 2021 04:57 am
@Seizan,
No, no, I tried to follow the rules Smile
It was written in 1975. I took license with the date in the song, it should read 1924, so I underlined the change. If you can bear listening to it, you'll be singing along by the end

And with a swing of her hips...
Seizan
 
  1  
Reply Wed 11 Aug, 2021 07:45 am
@Joeblow,
I didn't get a chance to listen to it (in the teacher's office in school). But I liked the lyrics. I'll try to give it a listen when the house quiets down tonight. I wonder what the captain of the Good Ship Venus and the mateys would make of it...

Extra beer for you...!
Joeblow
 
  1  
Reply Wed 11 Aug, 2021 04:10 pm
@Seizan,
Yay!

0 Replies
 
 

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