DESCRIPTION: "When the blackbird in the spring On the willow tree Sat and rock'd, I heard him sing, Singing Aura Lee." In praise of a "maid of golden hair." The singer describes how even the bird praise her. He begs her hand in marriage
AUTHOR: Words: W. W. Fosdick / Music: George R. Poulten
EARLIEST DATE: 1861 (sheet music published by John Church of Cincinnati)
KEYWORDS: courting love nonballad lyric
FOUND IN: US
REFERENCES (5 citations):
RJackson-19CPop, pp. 14-17, "Aura Lea" (1 text, 1 tune)
Emerson, pp. 62-63, "Aura Lee" (1 text)
Fuld-WFM, p. 117, "Aura Lea--(Love Me Tender)"
WolfAmericanSongSheets, #72, p. 6, "Aura Lee" (1 reference)
ST RJ19014 (Full)
NOTES: At times like this, one wishes we had a keyword, "Great-tune-lousy-words."
Originally published as a minstrel tune in 1861, verses were printed by both Union and Confederate presses, and the first important parody ("Army Blue") was used by the West Point class of 1865.
As for what Elvis Presley did with the tune, the less we say of that here, the better. - RBW
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