“Au Clair de la lune” #Music

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Not to be confused with Debussy’s “Clair de Lune,” a classical piece I love, this one is an 18th-century French folk song. The title literally means “By the Light of the Moon.” Its author is unknown, but the melody reigns supreme when anyone learns a musical instrument. In fact, it was one of the first songs I learned to play when I took violin lessons.

Today you’re hearing alto recorder, viola rather than violin, and Oriole soprano recorder, accompanied by ukulele. I hope you enjoy this catchy melody!

“My Bonnie Lies over the Ocean” #Music

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Here is a traditional Scottish folk song, so well known that most of us have heard it. I heard it as a child and wondered who Bonnie was. Well, Bonnie may refer to “Bonnie Prince Charlie,” but it may have other meanings as well. The song’s origin is unclear, but it remains popular in Western culture and even as a children’s song, much to my delight.

My arrangement contains viola and alto recorder, with ukulele accompaniment. I hope you enjoy it!

“I Need Thee Every Hour” #Music

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Annie Hawks wrote the poem, “I Need Thee Every Hour,” in 1872. Her pastor, Dr. Robert Lowry, wrote the refrain and the music. Though Annie Hawks wrote over 400 hymn texts, this is the only one continually published and sung today.

I hope you enjoy this arrangement with ukulele, viola, and alto recorder!

“Will Ye No Come Back Again?” #Music

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Also known as “Bonnie Charlie,” this is a traditional Scottish folk tune, author unknown. The lyrics, however, are not traditional, in the sense that they were written in one time period, about another time period which their author did not witness, and they imitate a particular style of song. The author of the poem is known; you can read more about the poem and its place in history

I hope you enjoy this arrangement played on lyre, viola, Oriole (soprano) and Yamaha alto recorder!

“We Three Kings” #Music

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Yes, I know that Christmas is either over, or hasn’t arrived yet, depending on how you look at it! But, today is Three Kings Day, when the Adoration of the Magi is celebrated in many countries. Children wake up this morning to find they have received gifts from the Three Kings. It sounds like a fun celebration to me!

This well-known carol was written in 1857. The melody and lyrics were both written by John Henry Hopkins, Jr., with the lyrics based on Matthew 2:1, which reads: “Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem,[.]”
–King James Version (KJV)

I love the refrain! I also hope you enjoy listening to “We Three Kings” played on alto recorder, viola, and zither!

“No, Not One” #Music

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This hymn was written by Johnson Oatman in 1895. I first heard it on a record album my grandfather, “Poppop Clyde,” gave me, where two women sang it as a duet in a foreign language. I never knew which language it was… However, it was not German, which I later studied extensively. Though that mystery remains, it’s a beautiful hymn!

I hope you enjoy hearing the English lyrics, viola, and alto recorder with ukulele accompaniment!

“Good King Wenceslas” #Music

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you’re probably familiar with this 19th-century carol. But did you know it is based on a real Bohemian king? You can read more

my arrangement contains viola and alto recorder, accompanied by zither. I hope you enjoy it!

“Angels We Have Heard on High” #Christmas #Music

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“Angels We Have Heard on High” was originally written in French, though its author is unknown. The English translation was written by James Chadwick in 1862. The hymn is based on Luke 2:8-15, which read:

And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.
And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.
And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.
And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.
–King James Version (KJV)

I hope you enjoy this arrangement on lyre, viola, and melody and harmony on alto recorder!

“See, Amid the Winter’s Snow” #Christmas #Music

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This is an English carol, also known as “The Hymn for Christmas.” I learned it from
Derwent Harps
just a few weeks ago.

The lyrics are a poem written by Edward Caswall and first published in 1858. Sir John Goss composed “Humility,” a hymn tune for this carol, in 1871. This is a lovely carol, not commonly heard in the United States.

My arrangement contains lyre, viola, and alto recorder. I hope you enjoy it!

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“Auf! Auf Doch, Ihr Kinder!” #Music

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This is a German folk song, urging children to “Get up!” (Auf) on Christmas morning and celebrate the Christ Child. I couldn’t find more information about it, except the lyrics, which I couldn’t remember well enough to sing. However, this is a beautiful melody, and I hope you enjoy hearing it on zither, viola, and alto recorder!