Chorus

Love amid the ravages of war: Ukraine sniper Evgenia Emerald, 31, referred to as Joan of Arc, has married a soldier on the frontlines. I was unable to find how many kills she has had. Photo from Google Images:

I’m partially learning another song. In the past year I’ve learned the rousing chorus to Adele’s Rolling in the Deep, the first three chords of AC/DC’s Back in Black and some of Apache by The Shadows, which, to my surprise given the American nature of the subject, is a UK band. I no longer have the will to learn full songs. And my musicianship, never polished, has deteriorated with age. This morning I looked up the tab to the chorus of Red River Valley, which has been a staple of country music for heaven knows how long. Its origin is a mystery. “According to Canadian folklorist Edith Fowke, there is anecdotal evidence that the song was known in at least five Canadian provinces before 1896,” and possibly goes back to 1870. It went by various titles for decades, and began from a female point of view, a woman seeing her man off to war. In 1927 Hugh Cross and Riley Puckett were the first to record it in its most common form. It has since been recorded many times and has been used in films and TV by artist as diverse as Bing Crosby and Connie Francis. Just about any doc on the genre will include the tune. Here’s the chorus I will butcher:
“So come sit by my side if you love me.
Do not hasten to bid me adieu.
Just remember the Red River Valley,
And the cowboy that has loved you so true.”
Fascinated by the usage of “hasten,” which I don’t recall in any other song, I googled it, and lyrics.com turned up 617 instances, although, judging by the first page, most are different artists doing the same song, none of which were familiar. The tab I found uses the chords A, E, A7 & D. One good thing about having a terrible voice, key doesn’t matter. (Facts from Wiki) The following clip features Marty Robbins doing it live, followed by the recording. Robbins passed away at 57 in 1982. Unfortunately, I don’t know the two gentlemen harmonizing:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ezJkRDQmL2Y
Here’s a still from the performance:

My thanks to my constant benefactress, who donated two works of non-fiction to the floating book shop, and to the three kind folks who combined to buy six titles in Russian on this crisp, beautiful day.

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vic fortezza

I was born in Brooklyn in 1950 to Sicilian immigrants. I’ve had more than 50 short stories published world wide. I have 13 books in print.