A Family Heritage

New folk music and folk-song materials in this comprehensive study are particularly important for singers, folk music enthusiasts, ethnomusicologists, comparative and cultural studies scholars, and those interested in Canadian culture.

LaRena Clark was a great singer and knew many fine songs. Her wide repertoire covers almost the complete range of types and topics of traditional Anglo-Canadian songs. Comparison with other collections in Canada, the United States, the British Isles, and Australia indicate just how unique and far-reaching it was.

Clark's background and her varied ancestry shaped her repertoire. The account of her parents' activities gives a vivid picture of folk life in rural Ontario during the early years of this century. She knew some Canadian songs previously unreported, and she wrote songs with a strong Canadian flavour.

Musically, Clark's songs are a microcosm of practices characteristic of British folk music throughout the English-speaking world. Particularly noteworthy is her constant reworking of traditional materials, procedures, forms, and individual tunes.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents
A Family Heritage 1
Contents 6
Acknowledgements 10
Women and Folksongs 12
I. Introduction 12
My Relationship with LaRena 14
LaRena's Repertoire 14
General Aspects of LaRena 16
II. LaRena's Story 18
Background 18
Early Life 19
LaRena and Gordon 20
LaRena's Songs and Records 22
LaRena Tells of Her Ancestors 24
LaRena Talks of Her Songs 27
III. The Songs 30
1. CLASSIC BALLADS 32
2. SONGS OF TRUE LOVE 56
3. SONGS OF FALSE LOVE 94
4. RETURNED LOVER BALLADS 126
5. THE BURNS CONNECTION 140
6. BAWDY BALLADS 148
7. NORTH AMERICAN ROMANTIC BALLADS 164
8. COMIC SONGS 174
9. IRISH SONGS 192
10. ENGLISH SONGS 202
11. AMERICAN SONGS 216
12. LOCAL CANADIAN SONGS 232
13. LUMBERING SONGS 240
14. LARENA'S COMPOSITIONS 256
IV. LaRena's Place in Musical Tradition 270
V. Summing Up 276
Sources and References for LaRena's Songs 278
LaRena's Family Songs 290
LaRena's Recordings 300
LaRena's Compositions 304
Publications Cited 306
Recordings Cited 310
Index of Songs 316
Index of First Lines 318