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Re: Filksong Genealogy: Green Hills of Harmony

sci-fantasy:

filkyeahfilk:

(Series: Filksong Genealogy)

So there’s this lovely folk song, variously called “Farewell tae th’ Creeks” or “Banks of Sicily,” which like many folk songs has gone through a lot of different permutations.  The above is a rendition by the Chad Mitchell Trio; their lyrics can be found here, while the original lyrics can be found here.

What happens when filkers get hold of something like this?  Welllll … a lot of things.

Here’s “Green Hills of Harmony” (lyrics) by Al Frank, performed here by (I think) Dandelion Wine.  It’s about the Dorsai, a fictional mercenary society from a science fiction book series by Gordon R. Dickson.

And here’s Frank Hayes’s parody of “Green Hills,” entitled “Don’t Ask” (lyrics).  It’s … also about the Dorsai.  Sort of.

And here is what may be the most recent riff on the same tune:  Erin & Rand Bellavia’s Pegasus-nominated filksong “Cliffs of Insanity.”

There’s much more to the story!

(You’re right about Dandelion Wine–that’s the recording from their album “The Face on Mars.”)

See, one major reason the Dorsai are still heard of, despite the Childe Cycle books not exactly being bestsellers anymore (Dickson died in 2001 and hadn’t published a new such book in almost a decade even then), is this:

In 1973, at TorCon 2, the 31st World Science Fiction Convention in Toronto, the only security there were local rent-a-cops, who among other things didn’t get along with the fans and didn’t really work out well–notably someone walked off with a Kelly Freas original (Kelly being one of the most well known artists in fandom) by showing the art show rent-a-cop a receipt for a much cheaper piece. The guard didn’t know any better than to say “no way you paid that for this piece.”

So, the legendary Robert Asprin, SF writer, cosplayer, SCAdian, filker, and fan extraordinaire, decided Something Must Be Done. Thus, he set up a fannish group to help work conventions: Door guards, hall monitoring (for drunk fans needing help back to their rooms as well as extraction from uncomfortable come-ons), auctioneering, even operations help. He got permission from Dickson to call the group the Dorsai Irregulars, the idea being that these were the “weirdos” of the otherwise traditionally military mercenary Dorsai.

And Bob himself being one of the major filkers of his age (arguably, he brought filk out of the back rooms and into function space at conventions; he definitely assigned the filk community its signature whiskey), he got some of his filker friends to help. To this day the roster of the DI is chock-a-block with some of the leading lights and senior songsters of the filk community, including Bob and Anne Passovoy, Murray Porath, Michael “Moonwulf” Longcor, Mark Bernstein, Bill and Gretchen Roper, Bill and Brenda Sutton, Steve MacDonald, John Hall, and more I’m not going to list one by one.

See John Hall’s “Filk Music and the Dorsai Irregulars” for more.

(And yes, Frank’s “Don’t Ask” is more about the Irregulars than the Regulars.)

Shai Dorsai!

(“I’ve never met a shy Dorsai!”)

Reblogging for the Rest Of The Story.  😀

What I don’t see much of is kids in college or just out of college doing it. Maybe they’ve moved on to anime.

Frank Hayes, interviewed about filk music by Alanna Nash

This is hilarious to me (despite being one of the sad truths of Filk These Days), because on one hand I think the (to my mind, at this point artificial) divide between science fiction and anime actually has distanced older fans from younger ones, and on the other hand it recalls the joke that never gets old, pointing at any given thing and saying “is that anime”

Folk Music in a Digital Age: The Importance of Face-to-Face Community Values in Filk Music

“At its best, the filk room is a special locus in space and time, created for and by the community, and is a safe, encouraging place for individual and group play, support and, most of all, co-creation and collaboration. At its core is a heightened group experience, created by active participation and immersive intensity with the goal of giving all participants a feeling of creative satisfaction and belonging…

In the filk room, and in other folk performance forms, co-created group experience arises from the manipulation and eradication of the performer/audience boundary.”

Long-time filker, professor, and ethnomusicologist, Sally Childs-Helton, recently published an excellent article about the nature of filk performance, with an examination of the differences between Millennials and older generations in fandom and what the future of filk might look like because of this.  I highly recommend checking it out if you’re interested in The State of Filk or fandom history in general.

If you download the article from this link, it gives the author some digital brownie points, so definitely do that if you can!

And if you don’t have the time or inclination to read academic articles on fandom (why not???  I guess some people are like that), I’ll leave you with a quote from the end of the article, from an interview with someone who had worked as a professional folk musician for years but was attending her first filk session, because I think it’s inspiring:

“You’re sitting around, swapping songs, and everyone gets a chance to play. I’ve
been going to folk music conventions for years, but you people are actually doing folk music.”

Gone Filkin’ – Dandelion Wine

Gone filkin’ it’s a sunny day
Gone filkin’ in the Milky Way
Gone filkin’ in the key of E
A filk circle is the place I want to be

“Gone Filkin’” by Tom Jeffers, a heartfelt and only moderately tongue-in-cheek tribute to the filk genre. Performed by Tom’s band, Dandelion Wine.

Lyrics available here.

We Are Who We Are – Vixy & Tony

I usually prefer to get studio recordings when I can, if only to make it more likely that all the words will be intelligible but…this one is special.  They set out to create a geek anthem, and boy did they ever.

Michelle Dockrey said this about writing this song:

Background: this was commissioned by Tony, who wanted a geek anthem. I got partway through writing it and found myself blocked. Thinking of all the things still wrong, and things that were going on at the time both in and out of fandom– harrassment, backlash over representation, lack of protections still for so many– I just didn’t see how I could write a song about how much it got better.

I confessed this tearfully to Tony, who said, essentially, “write it the way you see it.”

“We Are Who We Are,” by Vixy & Tony, lead vocals by Michelle Dockrey with Tony Fabris on guitar, Betsy Tinney on cello, Sunnie Larsen on violin, and the attendants of FilkCONtinental 2014…as themselves.  Lyrics and more information here

Every Single Song She Sings Is Tragic – Jeff and Maya Bohnhoff

“Every Single Song She Sings Is Tragic,” by Jeff and Maya Bohnhoff, a parody of (do I need to say it) “Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic” by The Police

….this song could be about me and I feel the need to apologize, even in the context of this blog – I know I pass over a lot of probably good songs because I’d just rather have ose, dammit

This song made it onto the “Best Adapted Song” Pegasus brainstorming poll for 2016, and I urge you to check out the lists, whether you plan on voting (and every single one of you is eligible to vote, yes, looking at you) or are just looking for some good song recs.

Valdemar’s Song (The Baron and the Minstrel of the Hall) – by Efenwealt Wystle

“So much of life in the SCA is centered around interactions between teachers and students. We all have so much to learn from each other, and none of us has all the answers. Though we all walk different paths on our quests, they all point to the same place. That place is made up of the very best qualities and talents within each of us. Learning to find that and forgive each other’s imperfections is what brings us all closer to our Dream.”

“Valdemar’s Song (The Baron and the Minstrel of the Hall),” by Efenwealt Wystle.  Valdemar, in this case, is an SCA persona, not the Lackey novels.

This song…it’s beautiful, and inspiring, and oddly sad.

Songs that Matter – Terence Chua

There are songs for a world filled with fairytales
There are songs for a world more mundane
But the words and the music are dancing as one
And the magic they weave is the same

“Songs that Matter,” by Terence Chua

Lyrics available here

Ukulele

“Ukulele,” a song about very serious musician problems, to the tune of “Hallelujah”

 

full disclosure, I found this song on Facebook at 3 AM, I don’t know if it’ll hold up in daylight

…but I’m pretty sure it will

I am incredibly disappointed that’s it not actually performed with a ukulele, though.  What’s up with that.

Cards-Against-Humanity-themed filk circle: bad idea, or worst idea? (Filk-themed Cards Against Humanity: better bad idea, or even worse worst idea?)

patrickat:

animatedamerican:

sci-fantasy:

animatedamerican:

theragnarokd:

animatedamerican:

dog-of-ulthar:

oh god

I can think of a couple of ways this could go

either you play CAH normally but every round somebody has to find or improvise a song based on the winning card, or

“WE’RE BANNED FROM ARGO EVERYONE, BANNED FROM ARGO JUST FOR _____.”

(winning card: “Another fucking rendition of ‘Banned From Argo’.”

ahahahahaha oh god the urge to make up more cards

this could be so very terrible

… are you by any chance coming to OVFF this year

other cards: “requesting ‘horse tamer’s daughter’ after somebody just finished singing ‘ice and fire’”

“the guy who ALWAYS sings (for a given definition of the word) ‘tomorrow i leave for battle’”

“trying to sing ‘wanderlust’ after your voice already died”

“march of cambreadth at 1AM”

“post-apocalyptic leslie fish”

(…oh god I just imagined leslie fish in Mad Max Fury Road and my brain is broken)

If I ever write a Mad Max Fury Road fic, there’s an excellent chance that Leslie fish is getting tuckerized as one of the Vuvalini.

The anti-Doof Warrior. (With black powder and alcohol.)

but anyway, Filkers Against Humanity.

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1iuqsLA0Ohm8zX__brCvtF5gk0t-FL8UsecsXaXkd4Fc/edit?usp=sharing

(With apologies, so far, to Josh and Lisa.)

AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

*already editing*

“another filk of that same Billy Joel tune”

“settling for a word that sort of rhymes”

“Weird Al Yankovic”

this is extremely important

Filk is the music of SF fandom. Its subject matter ranges from “a detailed deconstruction of a weighty Asimov tome in 27 verses” to “stuff my cat did to my yarn last Friday.” There are a lot of puns. Some of the songs are completely original; others are parodies. A few are parodies of parodies. Then there are the parodies of parodies of parodies. I could go on.

Kari Maaren (x)

so this is a thing that happened

Not My Job: Actor Oscar Isaac On Folk Music Vs. Filk Music

Playback – Andrew Ross

animatedamerican:

Playback
to the tune of Billy Joel’s “We Didn’t Start the Fire
filk lyrics by Andrew Ross

Mary Shelley, HG Wells, people meeting at hotels
Rudyard Kipling, people singing ditties at the bar
Gilbert, Sullivan, rounds of Young Man Mulligan
Poul and Karen Anderson, songs in Key of R

Martha Keller, Tolkein, songs of worlds as yet unseen
TH White’s Arthurians, Frederick Pohl’s Futurians
Tom Lehrer, Mondegreens, Slan Shacks, fanzines
Music circles, Reprints, Jacobs has a misprint!

We shouted “MacIntyre!”
It’s our cry of battle for the Old Dun Cattle
We shouted “MacIntyre!”
And we haven’t parted since the circle started

Amazing Stories Annuals, Pelz’s Filksong Manuals
Dr. Demento tunes, Callahan’s Crosstime Saloons
Hope Eyrie, Leslie Fish, bounced potatoes off the dish
Robert Aspirin, Gwen Zak, Dawson’s Christian, Captain Jack

Off Centaur, Teri Lee, making love in zero-G
Filthy Pierre, Longcor, black market Tullamore
Juanita Coulson, Red Lions, badges marked with Dandelions
Dorsai have a Fan Club! Jello in the bathtub!

Don’t set the cat on fire
It will only fight it if you try to light it
Don’t set the cat on fire
And we haven’t parted since the circle started

Peter Beagle, Consonance, chili cursed with sentience
HOPSFA, NESFA, ConChord, and the Pegasus Award
PFNEN, Ose, Amway, Talk Like a Pirate Day
Dandelion Digitals, Julia Ecklar and the gulls

Bob Laurent, Asimov, Jeff and Maya Bohnhoff
Rocky Horror Muppet Shows, Frank Hayes feeling indisposed
Bill Sutton DIY, Marischiello goodbye
Challenger! Final tour! What else must we all endure?

We saw the sky on fire
While the world was staring, we were Jordin Karing
We saw the sky on fire
And we haven’t parted since the circle started

Kathy Mar, Next Gen, Tullamore is back again
Steve Macdonald, Elfquest, Interfilk funds a guest
Tom Smith, 307 Ale, Lee Gold, Heather Dale
Phoenyx, Keepers of the Flame, Filkontario’s Hall of Fame

Echo’s Children, Bab-5, need a fool to feed the drive
Hamlet done by John Woo, Marilisa Valtazanou
GaFilk, Urban Tapestry, lives rich in fantasy
Airwalls down at Orycon! Firebells at Baycon!

We didn’t start a fire
We were all but deafened, and began Kanefin’
We didn’t start a fire
And we haven’t parted since the circle started

Blake Hodgetts, Proteins, Vixy, Tony, Thirteen
Stone Dragons, Moxie, Zander, Heather into Alexander
Bill and Gretchen, dead mouse, alligators in the house
ConFlikt, Judi Filksign, Tragedy at East Hill Mine

Mary Crowell, Faerieworlds, brony boys and Wicked Girls
Britain’s Talis Kimberly, Seanan’s Kellis-Amberlee
Doubleclicks! Browncoats! Cats! FuMP! Toy Boat!
Release the Cello! Sasquon! Thor! Pass another Tullamore!

We didn’t start the choir
It’s been so cathartic for the longest bardic
We didn’t start the choir
But when our turns have gone, it will still go on and on until the dawn…

Do not anger a bard, for your name is silly and it scans to ‘Greensleeves’.

Ancient filk proverb, from the blog of Terence Chua

Added to the Music Masterlist

fuckyeahfilk:

askmiddlearth:

Tons of you have been helping build up the Masterlist of Songs Inspired by Tolkien – thank you so much to everyone who’s sent in links to new songs! I’ve still got lots more to add (including all of The Tolkien Ensemble, yikes), but here’s the songs that were recently added:

Remember, if you’ve got more to add, please let me know – and include a link with your suggestion!!! (otherwise it will not be added)

Likely of interest to my followers!

And mine, though they’re probably more or less the same people.

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