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High Germany

from Roots&Branches by GreenMatthews

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An English folk song collected by Cecil Sharp in Somerset in 1906. The war in question is the War of the Spanish Succession (1701-1714). The song recommends riding a horse 800 miles to a war zone if you’re pregnant. Don’t try this at home, kids...

lyrics

“Oh Polly my dear Polly, the rout has now begun,
And we must march away, love, to the beating of the drum.
And so, my darling Polly, you must along with me
For we're off to fight the war, my love, in High Germany.”

“Oh Billy love, oh Billy, come list what I do say,
My feet they are so tender, I cannot march away.
And besides, my dearest Billy, I am with child by thee,
Not fitted for the war, my love, in High Germany.”

"A horse have I for you, my love, and on it you shall ride
So sweet and oh so tender all like a new-wed bride
And so, my darling Polly, you must along with me
For we're off to fight the war, my love, in High Germany.”

Oh, cursed be the cruel wars that ever they should rise
And out of Merry England press many a man likewise.
They pressed my true love from me, likewise my brothers three,
And sent them to the cruel war in High Germany."

“Oh Polly my dear Polly, the rout has now begun,
And we must march away, love, to the beating of the drum.
And so, my darling Polly, you must along with me
For we're off to fight the war, my love, in High Germany.”

credits

from Roots&Branches, released September 11, 2019
Chris: voice, piano, mandocello, bass
Sophie: voice, alto recorder

words and music trad. arr. Chris Green ©2019

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GreenMatthews Coventry, UK

Chris Green and Sophie Matthews play English traditional songs and tunes in a thoroughly 21st-century kick-ass style. Using a blend of ancient instruments such as cittern, English bagpipes and shawm as well as modern folk instruments such as guitar, flute and piano accordion, they breathe new life into material from hundreds of years ago, making it fresh and relevant for a modern audience. ... more

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