Category Archives: folk song

Selkies

It’s been a while since I posted on a folksong but I’ve had one going around in my mind for a fair time. It’s Child Ballad no. 113, The Great Silkie of Sule Skerrie. The version in my music collection … Continue reading

Posted in Child Ballad, folk music, folk song, Kidnapped, Nineteenth century fiction, Robert Louis Stevenson, Scotland | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Ballads and books: The inspirations behind ‘After the Ruin’

The following post was originally published on Heroines of Fantasy on 23rd March 2015. Louise Turner has invited me here today (Louise, Thank you!) to talk about After the Ruin. You will, I hope, read it for yourself so I … Continue reading

Posted in Child Ballad, fantasy novel, folk song, Hadley Rille Books, Harriet Goodchild author | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Out in the wild

After the Ruin is published. And this makes me very, very happy. Thank you to Terri-Lynne DeFino and Eric T. Reynolds of Hadley Rille Books. It took a long time, for reasons none of us could foresee back in 2013, … Continue reading

Posted in fantasy novel, folk song, Harriet Goodchild author, novel, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Night visiting

Well, it’s autumn, the evenings are darkening, the clocks are about to go back and Hallowe’en is approaching. Time to think about ghost stories. One of the most poignant I know is the Wife of Usher’s Well (Child Ballad no. … Continue reading

Posted in Allegory, Child Ballad, death, folk music, folk song, Karine Polwart, love, Music | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The tender side of a monster

History in song again. I think Henry VIII a monstrous figure, even within the context of his time. He set no limit on himself, and others suffered for it. Nevertheless there is a very tender portrayal of him in Child … Continue reading

Posted in Child Ballad, death, folk music, folk song, Henry VIII, Jane Seymour, love, Music | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Blood in the borders

Very short post this one: a reminder that the United Kingdom hasn’t always been so, and may not be so again. History’s a bloody, messy thing and today’s a day to remember that. It’s the 499th anniversary of the battle of … Continue reading

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Cross-dressing lovers and faithless sailors

I was at a folk festival a couple of weeks ago and Ioscaid were playing. I hadn’t heard them before but hope I will again very soon. One of the songs in their set seemed familiar enough to start with, … Continue reading

Posted in folk music, folk song, love | Tagged , , , , , | 8 Comments

Knights, and their impossible demands

More upon knights in this post (for some reason, my readers like posts about knights and who am I to disappoint them?).  Child Ballad no. 2 is The Elfin Knight. It has a certain overlap with The Outlandish Knight (Child … Continue reading

Posted in Allegory, Child Ballad, Dr Faustus, folk music, folk song, Imagined Village, knights, love | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Old tales, retold

Where do stories come from? Who knows, is the only answer; from somewhere deep inside us as we try to make sense of our place within the world. However, once they exist they get retold, over and over, and reformed … Continue reading

Posted in Child Ballad, death, folk music, folk song, Kathleen Ferrier, love, Malinky | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

From Faversham to Tunis: the pirate’s tale

I don’t, on the whole, recommend that you go to folk song as evidence for what actually happened in one period of history or another. Facts get distorted as stories are improved by the telling (or singing). Nevertheless I’ve found … Continue reading

Posted in Child Ballad, folk music, folk song, Music, pirates, Spiers and Boden | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment