Fife Tunes of the American Revolution
by Kate Van Winkle Keller
Sandy Hook, CT: The Hendrickson Group, 1997
40 pages FIF-bk: $6.00
||" . . a comprehensive, reliable and engaging book of music that deserves a place in every fifer’s library.” —Susan Cifaldi, Music Librarian, Company of Fifers and Drummers
This is a modern edition of melodies for the fife collected in Ellington, CT in 1777. Born in 1760, Giles Gibbs, Jr, was just old enough to be a member of the local militia. He lived in a small town, but the 59 tunes he wrote down are from sources far beyond the Great Swamp and the wide Connecticut River. His music is from the Lexington alarm, the French and Indian War, the Beggar’s Opera, Masonic songs and old ballads. Scottish and Irish melodies, French dances, English marches by Handel and psalm tunes fill his pages, some copied from books, many written out by ear. Even "Yankee Doodle" is included, but with a very strange title.
Gibbs’s book is unusual for its concise, local and dateable contents. It gives a unique view of musical practice in a small colonial New England town at a pivotal time in our history. This study sheds light on the sources of his music, the outward connections of his world, and the network of music that linked British-American communities on both sides of the Atlantic.
Military Duty Music: The Drums Call, To Arms, Doublings of the Troop, The French Troop, Singlings and Doublings of Johnsons’s Troop, Lord Loudon’s Singling of a Troop, Foot March; Retreats: Lovely Nancy, The Pretty Cupid; The Pioneers March, The Rogues March, The Dead March, Tattoo.
Marches: The Brick Maker March, The British Grenadiers March, The Cuba March, The Cuckoo’s Nest March, The Dorcesters March, The Dukes March, The Eagle March, General Wolfe’s March, The Haymaker March, Jack’s Quick Step, King George’s March, The Marquis of Granby’s March (2 tunes), Nancy Dawson’s March, Rakes of Marlow Quick Time, The Recruiting Officer, Thehos Gendar [Yankee Doodle], Trim the Velvet, The Turk’s March, The White Cockade, The White Joke March, The Wicklow’s March.
Instrumental Pieces and Dance Music: The Bonny Lass of Aberdeen, Farewell Sweethearts and Wives, The Granile’s Delight, Lady Hope’s Reel, The Lady’s Breast Knot, The Old Man, Over the River to Charley, Queen Mab, The Queen of Hearts, The Red Joke, The Right Way to Dublin, Rose Castle, Saint Patrick’s Day in the Morning, Sakey Bids Ms, Stones Grings All.
Song Airs: The Black Sloven, The Darling Swain or the Flowers of Edinburgh, The Mason’s Daughter, The Morning Air; Psalm Tunes: The Funeral Thought, Landaff, Saint George’s.
SAMPLE INNER PAGES: