Beltaine Song: The Warming Season's On

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One meaning of the season of Beltaine not often understood by modern folks, who are used to food just kind of appearing at restaurants and groceries, is that historically by this time of year it was not uncommon for people to be running low on food or even be starving. In a well-managed home where nothing had gone wrong, there was food into the spring, but this was really the season where you found out whether last fall's harvest was going to be enough to keep you going. And to make matters worse, food preservation techniques weren't what they are now with refrigeration, so rot was a real problem. This all meant that around this time of year, an average person was eagerly awaiting fresh vegetables, and the Beltaine celebration is in part about seeing the signs of fertility and growth that tell us that we'll be able to eat fresh food and won't starve to death in the next few months.

Musically, this is a rather festive slip jig. Slip jigs have the classic triplet rhythm very common to Irish traditional music and dance, but 3 larger beats per measure instead of 2, thus leading to the unusual 9/8 time signature. To make up for that rhythmic challenge, the harmonies are much more comfortable for guitarists in particular, although it's also quite playable on a ukelele: D, G, A, and Em, a.k.a. "the 4 chords of pop".

All works are copyright by yours truly, but may be distributed under Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share-Alike 4.0. That means, in short, you can use them yourself and your grove, and play the song to your heart's content both in private and in public, but must give credit where credit is due, and if you're planning on selling something involving this song we need to talk about that first.

Sheet Music

The Warming Season's On


The Warming Season's On

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Sharon Chenoweth 1 year, 8 months ago

You never disappoint, Dave! ♥️🌱🎼🎵🎶

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