Week 12: Two sisters, The wind and the rain, Percy’s song

Child 10, the Two Sisters, survived in a number of different variants. Here are two of them, which have nothing in common except their origins; in effect, they tell the first and second halves of the story.

Two sisters is an unusually brief and laconic telling of the story, or part of it; it ends quite suddenly. The recording features nothing but voices.

The wind and the rain is a highly untypical variant of an American version of the ballad; it has the end of the story, combined with a different first half. The recording features melodeon – a new instrument for me.

Percy’s Song, lastly, is the work of a 22-year-old Bob Dylan: clearly a man who knew his folksongs, including The wind and the rain. The recording features quite a variety of stuff.

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