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GUEST,Gibb Sahib The Advent and Development of Chanties (891* d) RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties 24 Mar 10

Last post was me, sorry.

John M. -- Thanks for that link to Epstein's book. The section on worksongs that you referenced gives nice context to these late 18th/early 19th sightings of New World Black work-songs. It also provides even earlier references that are very similar. At this point, I don't feel the urge to reproduce any more from these years (unless they have lyrics or great detail.) In fact, they are amazingly consistant (redundant!?). And I don't think I've ever seen the word "extempore" used so many times!

The "extempore" quality was clearly (to my reading) something foreign (or at least very notable) to the observers. I wonder if, in the coming decades, when non-Blacks adopted some of the Black songs/practices, this *aesthetic* was transfered as well. We know there was much *variation* in the chanties shared by later sailors, but was it quite to this degree? Did the process of petrification of verses begin only in the 20th century revivals, or had a sort of standardization already begun as soon as the genre crossed cultures? Something to think about when looking at later 19th century examples of chanties.

John, thanks also for the Southern & Wright volume. I'd found that one earlier, and I've been gradually breaking out the various relevant bits, which I will try to sort by decade as they come.


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