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Lyr Req: Two Sisters - with a harp being made?

DigiTrad:
BINNORIE
BINNORIE (TWO SISTERS)
CRUELISH SISTER
OH, THE WIND AND RAIN (The Two Sisters)
THE CRUEL SISTER
THE SWAN SWIMS BONNIE (Two Sisters)
THE SWAN SWIMS BONNIE (Two Sisters)
THE TWA SISTERS
THE TWO SISTERS (7)
THE TWO SISTERS (8)
THE TWO SISTERS (9)
THE WIND AND RAIN (Two Sisters)
TWO SISTERS (12)
TWO SISTERS (13)
TWO SISTERS (Bonnie Broom)


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Nothing to do this Friday? (Manchester, UK) (14)
Lyr Req: The Cruel Sister (esp. Old Blind Dogs) (8)
Lyr Req: american version of Two Sisters (12)
Lyr Req: Harp form a breastbone (10)
Yet another blurb about 'Cruel Sister' (3)
Lyr Req: Two Sisters (Niamh Parsons ver.) Tha (5)
Lyr Req: The Cruel Sister (from Pentangle) (12)
Percy's Song: History? (7)
Hilary Kelley (9)
Two Sisters, a' Bhean Eudach, Horpa (18)
Lyr/Chords Req: the two sisters (23)
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I am humbled (124)
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History of 'The Wind and Rain'? (11)
And A Two And A Three (5)
Lyr Add: Rollin' a-Rollin' (Child #10) (5)
Twa sisters (17)
Percy's Song (4)


MickyMan 25 Jan 18 - 11:18 AM
StephenH 25 Jan 18 - 11:35 AM
MickyMan 25 Jan 18 - 11:45 AM
CupOfTea 25 Jan 18 - 09:44 PM
Susan of DT 26 Jan 18 - 06:05 AM
Jim Carroll 26 Jan 18 - 06:13 AM
Jack Campin 26 Jan 18 - 12:23 PM
GUEST,kenny 26 Jan 18 - 12:49 PM
Will Fly 26 Jan 18 - 02:35 PM
Marje 26 Jan 18 - 03:05 PM
gillymor 26 Jan 18 - 03:14 PM
GUEST,anon 30 Jul 20 - 12:53 AM
Black belt caterpillar wrestler 30 Jul 20 - 04:57 AM
leeneia 31 Jul 20 - 11:19 AM
Mysha 31 Jul 20 - 12:40 PM
leeneia 31 Jul 20 - 08:17 PM
GUEST,geo 01 Aug 20 - 03:41 AM
Cattia 02 Aug 20 - 04:21 PM
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Subject: Lyr Req: Two Sisters - with a harp being made?
From: MickyMan
Date: 25 Jan 18 - 11:18 AM

I just heard a version of Two Sisters, set by the seaside, with the poor little sister being killed and turned into a harp by mintrels. Alas, it was streaming on Pandora with no title/performaer info.
It sounded like some kind of Celtic group, with a rfrain that included some words that sounded like "bonnie broom". It was a medium fast tempo.
Does anybody know what i probably heard? Are the words on Mudcat?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Two Sisters - with a harp being made?
From: StephenH
Date: 25 Jan 18 - 11:35 AM

Yep, you can find the lyrics in Mudcat under "The Two Sisters", "The Twa Sisters", or "The Cruel Sister." I don't know if it's what you heard, but my personal favourite version still remains the one by Pentangle on their "Solomon's Seal" album:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P3S2brPXjEM


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Two Sisters - with a harp being made?
From: MickyMan
Date: 25 Jan 18 - 11:45 AM

Yes! Thank you!   (Although the one I heard was more uptempo than your youtube link ..... I actually prefer this more intimate version.)
Reminds me that I pretty much missed Pentangle as a band. Gotta do some listening, for sure!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Two Sisters - with a harp being made?
From: CupOfTea
Date: 25 Jan 18 - 09:44 PM

Pentangle's version seemed pretty up-tempo to me, and was my go-to version of this ballad for a couple decades before Andrew Calhoun spoiled for me entirely. The "lay the bent to the bonny broom" made reference to two types of herbiage meant to repel the devil, and that melody, and refrains, more properly belonged to The Devil's Nine Questions. Now I'm not a purist, and know ballads can switch melodies and refrains like a body can change a dress or tie, but the logic of his assertation stuck with me, and I stopped singing it that way. There are so many other sets of refrains that go to this ballad, haven't settled on one yet. (I am MUCH more inclined to sing Sadie Damascus' 'Cruelish Sister' when I'm on that plot line, anyhow.)

Joanne in Cleveland


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Two Sisters - with a harp being made?
From: Susan of DT
Date: 26 Jan 18 - 06:05 AM

Several of the 15 versions of Child #10, the Two Sisters include the harp made from her breast bone:
Two Sis 13 with harp
2sis #12 with harp
2 sis Bonnie Broom
2 sis 9

Cruel Sister
Binnorie
And many more make her into a fiddle


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Two Sisters - with a harp being made?
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 26 Jan 18 - 06:13 AM

Wonerdful version of the Ballad, The Twa Sisters by Traveller Scots Betsy Whyte
]BAND 4   THE TWA SISTERS CHILD 10        
Betsy Whyte


Dear sister, dear sister, wad ye take my hand
Hee ho an sae bonnie, oh,
An put your foot on that marble stone?
An the swan swam so bonnie oh.
Dear sister, dear sister, wad ye go a walk with me,
Hae ho an sae bonnie oh,
And I will show you wonders before you return
And the swan swam so bonnie oh.

For thae was two sisters lived in a mill,
Hae ho and so bonnie oh,
For the younger sister pushed the older sister in
An was drowned in the dams o' Binnorie-oh.

Oh miller, oh miller, come stop your dam,
Hae ho an sae bonnie oh,
For I do see a maiden or a white-milk swan,
An the swan swam in Binnorie oh.

For the miller hastened, he stopped up his dam
Hae ho an so bonnie oh,
And it's then they took her and hung her up tae dry,
An the swan swam in Binnorie oh.

For thae was three fiddlers passing this way
Hae ho and so bonnie oh,
There was one of them taen her fore-finger
For to make a fiddle-pin,
And anither of them taen three links of her yellow hair
For to make some fiddle strings,
And the ither of them taen her breast-bone
For to make a fiddle that wad play a tune its lone,
And the swan swam in Binnorie oh.

Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Two Sisters - with a harp being made?
From: Jack Campin
Date: 26 Jan 18 - 12:23 PM

Isn't there a version with the refrain "the broom blooms bonnie, the broom blooms fair"? From C.K. Sharpe originally, I think.

The hair-into-harp idea is pan-European, used in Mahler's "Das Klagende Lied".


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Two Sisters - with a harp being made?
From: GUEST,kenny
Date: 26 Jan 18 - 12:49 PM

Was the singer male or female ? Any indication of nationality ?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Two Sisters - with a harp being made?
From: Will Fly
Date: 26 Jan 18 - 02:35 PM

I suspect the version you heard is by Old Blind Dogs - great stuff. Check out their version of Twa Corbies.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Two Sisters - with a harp being made?
From: Marje
Date: 26 Jan 18 - 03:05 PM

Eliza Carthy's recording of Sheath and Knife has that refrain (the broom blooms bonny, etc) but it's a different story from the two sisters.

Marje


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Two Sisters - with a harp being made?
From: gillymor
Date: 26 Jan 18 - 03:14 PM

Here are the OBD's doing The Cruel Sister , mentioned by Will.

Another trad song concerning cadaver luthiery,
Wind and Rain, the song starts at about 1:08.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Two Sisters - with a harp being made?
From: GUEST,anon
Date: 30 Jul 20 - 12:53 AM

Jack - from what I could find, the refrain "the broom blooms bonny, the broom blooms fair" originally comes from Sheath and Knife (child 16)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Two Sisters - with a harp being made?
From: Black belt caterpillar wrestler
Date: 30 Jul 20 - 04:57 AM

The Pyewackett version is worth listening to. They manage to do a very gradual slowing through the last verse, something I find very difficult to achieve in such a controlled manner.

Robin


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Two Sisters - with a harp being made?
From: leeneia
Date: 31 Jul 20 - 11:19 AM

I sing a version with refrains

Hey the gay and grinding..
By the bonnie, bonnie boughs of London

I learned it from a recording by Martin Carthy, who learned a version collected from a woman in some southern state (Virginia?). Since I have friends who play harp, I changed the magic instrument from a fiddle to a harp.

Boughs - when a river meanders, the curving pieces of land which border it are the boughs.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Two Sisters - with a harp being made?
From: Mysha
Date: 31 Jul 20 - 12:40 PM

And why are they bonny?

BFN
Mysha


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Two Sisters - with a harp being made?
From: leeneia
Date: 31 Jul 20 - 08:17 PM

In medieval times, there were abundant grasses and flowers on the boughs. Butterflies fluttered about, and birds sang sweetly. From time to time people would see princesses there.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Two Sisters - with a harp being made?
From: GUEST,geo
Date: 01 Aug 20 - 03:41 AM

Oh the versions that have "the bows/boughs of london" are very fun! I think "The Bows of London" by Stick in the Wheel may have been the first version of this ballad I ever heard.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Two Sisters - with a harp being made?
From: Cattia
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 04:21 PM

In Terre Celtiche Blog I wrote about the ballad and its variants with many music videos and related texts. Generally the blog is written in Italian but for The two sisters: Binnorie I also made the pages in English

https://terreceltiche.altervista.org/the-two-sisters-ballad-binnorie/


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