New Versions of Old Folk Songs

The English folk song Scarborough Fair dates back to late medieval times, when the seaside resort of Scarborough was an important venue for tradesmen from all over England. Scarborough Fair was actually a huge forty-five day trading event, starting around August fifteenth, which was exceptionally long for a fair in those days. Now that there's a sense of place and time, on this episode of New Sounds, you'll hear many new versions of old folk songs like Scarborough Fair, including the ambient arrangement of that tune by the British musician/composer/producer Tom Green, a.k.a. Another Fine Day. Also, bassist-leader Marc Johnson, along with drummer Peter Erskine and celebrated guitarists Bill Frisell and John Scofield take on the folk ballad "Black Is the Color of My True Love’s Hair," a tune probably from the Southern Appalachian Mountains. Plus Nora York’s riveting interpretation of one of the most famous of Irish folk songs “She Moved Through The Fair,” and more.

PROGRAM #2292 New versions of old folk songs (First aired Thurs. 6/3/2004)





Simon & Garfunkel

Parsley, Sage, Rosemary & Thyme

Scarborough Fair, excerpt [1:00]

Columbia /Legacy #66001***

Another Fine Day


Scarborough Fair [5:30]

Climate Records #3004

Paul Lansky

Folk Images

Delia [5:00]

Bridge #9060***

Heritage (Darol Anger, et al)

New Interpretations of American Roots Music

Pretty Polly [8:30]

Six Degrees #7569***

Last Forever

Last Forever

In The Pines [2:30]

Nonesuch #79447***

Nora York


She Moved Through The Fair [3:30]

Polystar #5070 Japanese import.
Info at

Charles Lloyd

The Water Is Wide

The Water Is Wide [5:00]

ECM #1734**

Marc Johnson

Bass Desires

Black Is The Color Of My True Love's Hair [7:00]


Epiphany Project

Epiphany Project

Black (Is The Color Of My True Love's Hair) [2:30]

Epiphany #0003*


New Interpretations of American Roots Music

Down In The Willow Garden [4:30]

See above.

The Wayfaring Strangers

Shifting Sands Of Time

Man of Constant Sorrow [3:30]

Rounder #0484***

*, ** - Find the recordings you've heard - go to the New Sounds Recordings Information page