Mudcat Café message #784700 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #40616   Message #784700
Posted By: CET
15-Sep-02 - 07:35 PM
Thread Name: German folk music II
Subject: RE: German folk music II
I am just beginning to learn a German folk song that made me think of this thread. It's printed in a collection called "Songs of Man", edited by Norman Luboff and Win Stracke (I think I might start a separate thread about this book. It's great!)

The song is called "The Speckled Fish" in English and it is a German version of "Lord Rendall". In fact, it's almost a verse for verse parallel. In the version of Lord Rendall that I've heard the dying young man has been fed poisoned eels. The German version goes like this:

"Was gab sie dir zu essen? Heinerich, mein lieber Sohn!" "Sie kocht mir einen bunten Fisch, Frau Mutter mein, O weh! Mein junges Leben, Vergeben hat sie's mir."

In Lord Rendall, the young man wishes his sweetheart a rope to hang herself. In the German song, it's:

"Ich wunsch ihr die ewige Holl und Qual"

(Sorry, no umlauts)

I like the tune, but it's strangely bouncy for such a macabre theme. I think Mozart might have known this tune, since it has similarities to something that Papageno sings in the Magic Flute.

I would be glad to post the lyrics if anyone is interested.