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Black Is the Color of my True Love's Hair (arr Hatton)

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Traditional, arranged by Gaylen Hatton


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General Info

Year: 1997
Duration: c. 2:05
Difficulty: (see Ratings for explanation)
Original Medium: Folk song
Publisher: Unknown
Cost: Score and Parts - Unknown


Instrumentation

(Needed, please join the WRP if you can help.)


Errata

None discovered thus far.


Program Notes

Black Is the Color (of My True Love's Hair) is a traditional folk song first known in the US in the Appalachian Mountains but originating from Scotland, as attributed to the reference to the Clyde in the song's lyrics. The musicologist Alan Lomax supported this Scottish origin, saying that the song was an American "re-make of British materials."

Many different versions of this song exist, some addressed to females and others addressed to males. These words are set to two distinct melodies, one of which is traditional and the other was written by the Kentucky folk singer and composer John Jacob Niles. Niles recalled that his father thought the traditional melody was "downright terrible", so he wrote "a new tune, ending it in a nice modal manner."

- Program Note from Wikipedia


The text references a girl who is waiting for her lover to return from sea.

Black is the color of my true love’s hair.
His face is like some rosy fair,
The prettiest face and the neatest hands,
I love the ground whereon he stands.
I love my love and well he knows,
I love the ground whereon he goes,
If you no more on earth I see,
I can’t serve you as you have me.
The winter’s passed and the leaves are green,
The time is passed that we have seen,
But still I hope the time will come,
When you and I shall be as one.
I go to Clyde for to mourn and weep,
But satisfied I never could sleep.
I’ll write you a few short lines,
I’ll suffer death ten thousand times.
I love my love and well he knows,
I love the ground whereon he goes,
If you no more on earth I see,
I can’t serve you as you have me.


Commercial Discography

None discovered thus far.


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


Performances

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  • Brigham Young University (Provo, Utah) Symphonic Band (Kirk Saville, conductor) – 14 February 2019


Works for Winds by this Composer


Resources