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CAROLS FOR THE SOLSTICE (an alternative selection)

CAROLS FOR THE SOLSTICE (an alternative selection)

Playing tracks by

Brian Gulland and Satch Norton, Assembly Rooms, Glastonbury and Norman Iles.

Chart positions

This upload was 40th in the #folk chart.

Carols for Solstice
Recorded at the Assembly Rooms, Glastonbury, November 1997 by "Brian Gulland and Satch Norton"

This is a selection of restored solstice carols, these are not personal versions or parodies but restorations of the carols back to what might have been their original versions; Pagan Fertility Dance Songs.

(more details in the comment section)

One Love


Stella Heath

The Holly and the Ivy to the tune of To be a Pilgrim - interesting; and I'm glad they've sped the rhythm up. Hyns can sound terrribly humdrum :)

Dread Cabbage

True Stella ....Humdrum is a good description and I think making them a bit more upbeat would certainly do them no harm :)

Dread Cabbage

“Our modern day carols probably evolved from a tradition of pre-Christian sung fertility dances, which is believed to have survived up to the 14th Century in this country. The dances are believed to have been similar in format to the branle (pronounced brawl) - Old French circle dances and Breton - style Andro or processional line dances.

There are lurid tales of debauched revelry and huge processions dancing from town to town, often lead by a naked woman. These would almost certainly be connected to the Germano - Celtic rite of Yule on winter solstice, celebrated as Saturnalia by the Romans. The Wassails come from a distinct Anglo-Saxon tradition, also connected with fertility. "Waes Heil" means good health

Many of these versions are the work of Norman Iles, a lifetime's work in searching out and restoring these songs and many others to their original meaning and form.