Banshee – Cheshire Moon

The only thing certain in each life is death
As sure as each heartbeat and every last breath
The cry of the Banshee each soul must heed
But who in this world calls for me?
Yes, who in this world calls for me?

“Banshee” by Cheshire Moon. I didn’t realize until I listened to this how much I needed Love Songs About Death Omens in my life.

Lyrics and chords available here.

Filksong Genealogy: Sealskin

filkyeahfilk:

I never thought that I could hold you forever
Always knew deep down you’d have to go home
I can be grateful for these bright years together
And I know you miss the salt sea foam
If you hurry, you can still catch the tide, my love
If you hurry you can still catch the tide.

“Still Catch the Tide” by Talis Kimberley, performed here by Seanan McGuire with Michelle “Vixy” Dockrey, Tony Fabris, S.J. Tucker, and Amy McNally.  Lyrics are available here.

This is one of my favorite songs to sing along to when I want to be Sad About The Sea (a specific emotion that I experience with alarming regularity.)

If you want a selkie song with a happy ending, check out “The Maiden and the Selkie” by Heather Dale or “Glass Half Full of the Sea” by Benjamin Newman.

She puts on sealskin with a steady hand
Beast at sea, woman on land
She puts on sealskin, the color of foam
She knows what’s next: going home

“Sealskin” by Batya Wittenberg, performed here with the able assistance of Gary Ehrlich (guitar) and Joshua Kronengold (vocals), is the story of “Still Catch the Tide” rearranged to the tune of another Talis Kimberley song about a shapeshifting woman with a human lover: “Velvet” (lyrics and audio here).

… and it owes its existence in no small part to Bob Kanefsky’s “Velvet Tide” (lyrics here), which is a comedic song that takes the story of “Velvet” and rearranges it to the tune of “Still Catch the Tide.”

(Series: Filksong Genealogy)

 

Still Catch the Tide – Seanan McGuire and friends

I never thought that I could hold you forever
Always knew deep down you’d have to go home
I can be grateful for these bright years together
And I know you miss the salt sea foam
If you hurry, you can still catch the tide, my love
If you hurry you can still catch the tide.

“Still Catch the Tide” by Talis Kimberley, performed here by Seanan McGuire with Michelle “Vixy” Dockrey, Tony Fabris, S.J. Tucker, and Amy McNally.  Lyrics are available here.

This is one of my favorite songs to sing along to when I want to be Sad About The Sea (a specific emotion that I experience with alarming regularity.)

If you want a selkie song with a happy ending, check out “The Maiden and the Selkie” by Heather Dale or “Glass Half Full of the Sea” by Benjamin Newman.

Come To The Garden – Lillie Blue

bluespacequeen:

Come To The Garden: an original song inspired by The Adventure Zone, an actual play D&D Podcast by the McElroy Brothers (and daddy). From Magnus to Julia. Lyrics under the cut. Thank you for listening!

Keep reading

Even if you’ve never heard of The Adventure Zone, please listen to this, the tune is absolutely gorgeous

Dawson’s Christian – Vixy & Tony

There are stories of the Dutchman, the Celeste and Barnham’s Pride
There are stories of the Horseman and the Lady at his side
But the tale that makes my blood run cold, the more because it’s true
Is the tale of Jayme Dawson and his crew
Yes, the tale of Dawson’s Christian and her crew

A newer recording of one of my favorite classic filk songs, “Dawson’s Christian,” a space opera ghost story, originally Duane Elms.

Autonomous – Marshall Burns

This song was written by Marshall Burns (and animated here by Sunny Adams) for the novel Autonomous by Annalee Newitz, and she wrote a really good post about the genre she’s calling “Canadian prairie futurism” and how it relates to traditional music.  I’m just gonna copypaste a chunk of it here because it’s such a good explanation of a huge part of the filk ethos:

Two summers ago, when I was finishing the first draft of my novel Autonomous, I watched Marshall play and thought about the future. Back then he was at Leopold’s Tavern, and I’d come to the crowded bar with a bunch of family after a long dinner full of conversations about politics and art. This is the sort of thing we might do more often if there were an apocalypse, I mused. We’d gather in some communal shelter, after a day of hunting and gathering in the trashed wastes. Then somebody from our family would start to sing. We’d raise our voices too, to take our minds off the famine and plague and wildfires.

But it’s also the exact kind of thing we’d do in a Utopian future. Imagine us surrounded by carbon-neutral farms whose plants are monitored by sensors and satellites. Our brains would be crackling with ideas, thanks to government-funded science education. After a productive day in the fields and the labs, we’d gather at the co-op watering hole and sing our brains out in agrarian socialist solidarity. We’d all sound great too, because we’d have optimized our vocal chords with open source biotissue mods.

Maybe it sounds a little strange to say that Marshall’s old-fashioned songs gave me these vivid, contradictory images of the future. But I see the future clearly in these anachronistic moments. If we can still hear traditional prairie music in a modern city bar, then it’s a kind of guarantee that people of the future will still be listening to us. As Marshall sang, I could imagine distorted bits of my own culture still alive in a world utterly transformed by time’s passage.

And besides all that, enjoy a song about sad robots!

Hold the Line – Terence Chua

Hold the line – don’t retreat and don’t surrender
Hold the line – though around you others fall
We will give our last full measure
May the fates all treat us kind
So hold the line, my boys, just hold the line

“Holy the Line,” by Terence Chua, a war song applicable to real life or to a dozen sci-fi and fantasy universes, as ones’ predilections direct.

Lyrics/Download

The Lady – Urban Tapestry

But the Lady is faithful, she rides the bright sea
Her bowing is graceful, full of dignity
She speeds ‘cross the water, the wind at her back
And the crew hopes she’ll carry them home

“The Lady,” by Urban Tapestry (Debbie Ridpath Ohi, Allison Durno, and Jodi Krangle)  plus Tom Jeffers on bass, Dave Clement on lead guitar, and Kylea Fulton on pennywhistle

An immigration song…about vampires.

Ballade of the Blue Rose – Clarsa McElhaney

"I know the secret longings hidden deep within the songs you sing,

     "and though I've never loved I must now for the sake of the rising Spring.

"I will fulfill your secret dream from now until the next sunrise

     "if you'll consent to let me have, the fire, from your eyes."

If there’s one thing filkers can’t seem to get enough of, besides puns, it’s weird and ominous songs about musicians.  “Ballade of the Blue Rose,” by Coral de Chauncey (Wendy Murphy) and Brad of Cambria (Brad Banyan), sung by Clarsa McElhaney.  Lyrics and chords available here.

Filksong Genealogy: By the Time I Get To…

 

Yesterday I journeyed for half a million miles.
Now I’m stacked up on an aircraft’s back.
This last part takes a while.

“Phoenix,” by Julia Eckar (lyrics), is a heartwrenching song about a futuristic space ship with a soul.  “By the Time I Get To…”, by Bob Kanefsky (lyrics), is one of those rare parodies that’s almost as poignant as the original song, this time about very realistic spaceflight, and picking up the pieces after re-entry.

(Series: Filksong Genealogy)