This page is for music that is not a fiddle tune, a traditional ballad, or a typical original song. I also plan to include some short essays or editorials and other non-MP3 content--some day.
Japanese Folk Songs
I am in the midst of recording a series of Japanese folks songs that deal with matters of historical or cultural significance (the files are housed on a different server). Most of these songs are from the Meiji Era (ca. 1867-1912) and reflect the values of their time and place. My playing and singing, in most cases, is based on sheet music. In general, the tempo here is faster than "authentic" Japanese versions, which would be sung slowly and with much vibrato and other vocal ornamentation. During searches for versions of these songs out there on the web I have found a variety of renditions, even a Brazilian Samba version of the Tabaruzaka melody.
Click the link next to each song for the original lyrics and an English translation.
Miya-san, miya-san 宮さん, 宮さん (1868) <lyrics & brief notes>
Tabaruzaka 田原坂 (1877) <lyrics & brief notes>
Hotaru no hikari 蛍の光 (1881) <lyrics & brief notes>
Sumera mikuni 皇御国 (1883) <lyrics & brief notes>
Aogeba tōtoshi あおげば尊し (1884) <lyrics & brief notes>
Saijo 才女 (1884) <lyrics & brief notes>
Battōtai 抜刀隊 (1885) <lyrics & brief notes>
Norumanton-gō chinbatsu no uta ノルマントン号沈没の歌 (1887) <lyrics & brief notes>
Dainamaito-don ダイナマイトどん (1888) <lyrics & brief notes>
Here is a song that I wrote in June 2008 for the denizens of the campsite where I hung out at Mt. Airy. It will make little or no sense to anyone who wasn't there: "The Good Book" (lyrics and chords).
Short Essays and Editorials
1. Is it possible to get a fiddle for $100 or less that sounds OK and is in good playing shape? Perhaps so. For a detailed essay on this matter, see: "What Kind of Fiddle Can You Get for a C-Note?"
Random Photos (most recent ones first)