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Broadside ballad entitled 'Recitation. My Dear Old Saxhorn'


The first verse begins: 'I love thee, I prize thee, and who can scorn / Or chide me for loving my dear tenor horn? / Together we've journeyed for many long years, / And the thoughts of our parting would cause bitter tears.' The name of the author has been included: 'J. Williams, Formerly of the Band XL Regt.'

This light-hearted song recounts the very long and special relationship that has developed between Jim Williams and his 'E flat Saxhorn'. They appear to have shared the best of times, 'When together we shared in the honour and praise', and the worst of times, 'I have one solace left me, this true friend of mine'. Although the notion of a special bond existing between a man and a musical instrument is a humorous one, the sentiments found in Williams' 'Recitation' are surprisingly touching.

Early ballads were dramatic or humorous narrative songs derived from folk culture that predated printing. Originally perpetuated by word of mouth, many ballads survive because they were recorded on broadsides. Musical notation was rarely printed, as tunes were usually established favourites. The term 'ballad' eventually applied more broadly to any kind of topical or popular verse.

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Probable period of publication: 1880-1900   shelfmark: RB.m.143(040)
Broadside ballad entitled 'Recitation. My Dear Old Saxhorn'
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