We are singing two selections from the set of “Old American Songs” by Aaron Copland, “Ching-A-Ring Chaw” and “The Boatmen’s Dance. Sheet Music – £ – Old American Songs II No. 5 Ching-a-Ring-Chaw Minstrel song for mixed choir (SATB) with piano accompaniment. English. CHING-A-RING CHAW. 3. (Minstrel Song) Des. Res en HEAVE A. S.A.T.B.. Adapted by Aaron Copland. Arranged for Chorus by Irving Fine. RY AN: TNI A4.
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It is true that after the Civil War there were some minstrel shows that featured black performers in blackface. By around the shows chinb become a major American musical form, with packed audiences. The best answer is the following: The black characters tended to be portrayed in negative ways, as lazy, unintelligent and happy-go-lucky but also musically talented.
Turning to some straightforward American folk songs must have been a relief.
Now that we know the source of chinf song some of the puzzling lines become clear. You may recall that there was a brief period of about a decade rlng Haiti was a republic governed by former slaves who had risen up against their white masters.
How did we get the spirituals? So the use of the makeup did not in and of itself indicate prejudice. Both are great to perform, though. I cannot leave this particular subject without mentioning Al Jolson, most famous for his performance in the first talkie, The Jazz Singer, who performed often in blackface but who was also known as a proponent of racial integration.
Ching-a-ring Chaw lyrics – Aaron Copland original song – full version on Lyrics Freak
Has anyone else encountered such a problem? By the time Copland chinng ransacking the Boston University Library for lyrics the minstrel shows were pretty much dead, but he was certainly aware of their legacy.
In spite of, or perhaps because of, the cing popularity of the minstrel shows, there was a lot of controversy about them. See the bottom of this post for videos. Copland nee Kaplan would be horrified to think so.
Then my revivalist theory hit the dust: First, some general background. Segregationists, and especially slaveowners, saw them as subversive, especially in the sympathetic chinng of runaway slaves.
When I read through the lyrics of this piece at our first rehearsal I assumed that it was some type of backwoods revivalist hymn, with its references to the Promised Land and the glory of God. Copland has left intact as much as he can even as he broadens the theme to that of a s rather a specific Promised Land.
But if this was originally a song about the earthly joys of life in a free land, those references make sense.
Ching-a-ring Chaw Lyrics
Racism and the transformative power of xhing are all packed into this one short selection. And here was where the story got really interesting, because it was indeed the case that the original song was drawn from pre-Civil War minstrel shows. Tell them, in that case, they would have to stop singing other forms of music performed by African-Americans throughout the past hundreds of years: This post fulfills both conditions. Most people just enjoyed them without feeling any need to justify them; others did try to legitimize the portrayals by saying that the shows provided a venue for black music and culture.
The fascinating thing about that first set is that it was commissioned by the composer Benjamin Britten, and it had its premier in England at his Music and Art Festival, with Britten himself playing cnaw piano.
Tell them, also, that the expression of African-American music, even if organized and arranged by arguably the best American composer-arranger of the 20th Century who happened to be Jewish, has nothing at all to do with supporting slavery. The words are actually supposed cbing represent the strumming of a banjo, so I was wrong in that assumption.
Copland invested a great deal of dhaw and energy researching the material for the songs, which were a great success at the festival. If so, what to say???? In some circles the heavy hand of political correctness has descended on this selection.