This recording ‘Bailero’ from the ‘Chants d'Auvergne’ (‘Songs from the Auvergne"); is one from a collection of folk songs from the Auvergne region of France arranged by Joseph Cantaloupe for the soprano voice and orchestra between 1923-1930. These songs are sung in the local language, Occitan.
Cantaloupe travelled throughout France to collect folk songs, making arrangements for voice and instrumental accompaniment. Without his painstaking work these simple folk songs which were orally passed down from one generation of shepherds to the next would have been lost forever.
Cantaloupe leaves us an enduring legacy of the most exqustively beautiful simple music ever written.
The music blends beautifully with the majestic scenery of this high plateau area in southern France with expanses of green rolling hills stretching out as far as the eye can see and richly carpeted in wildflowers which echos the lyrics of skylarks.
It is worth waiting for theses few pictures in the clip to glimpse the magificient scenery and imagine the dulcet tones of a maiden to a shepherd across the river :
‘Are you having much fun’?
‘None at all, and you’?
Shepherd the meadow is in flower, come over here to tend your flock?
The grass is greener in my field.
Shepherd the river runs between us. I can’t get across!
Then I’ll come across and fetch you
Click here for the clip - this recordng is as fantastic for me as was when I first heard it many years ago sung then by rising star Jessye Norman !!