English folk music collector Cecil J. Sharp (1859 1924) was one of the most renowned musicologists in the area of true folksong, and these 100 folksongs were all collected by him from actual singers all across Britain. The tunes are presented precisely as they were originally taken down from the lips of the singers, and the lyrics are the best, most intelligible versions of the actual words and variants. Arranged for medium voice and piano, these songs are among the best in the English folk tradition, and through the survival of Border ballads and others in the United States, in the American folk tradition as well.
Included are "Henry Martin," "Robin Hood and the Tanner," "Lord Bateman," "Barbara Ellen," "The Outlandish Knight," "The Golden Vanity," "The Green Wedding," "Lord Rendal," "Lord Lovel," "The Death of Queen Jane," "The Crystal Spring," "The Drowned Lover," "O Waly, Waly," "Fanny Blair," "The Lark in the Morn," "Hares on the Mountains," "The Brisk Young Bachelor," "Sweet William," "Scarborough Fair," "The Keeper," "The Robber," "Botany Bay," "Admiral Benbow," "The Ship in Distress," "A Brisk Young Sailor," "The Twelve Days of Christmas," "The Ten Commandments," "The Barley-Mow," and many more.
The editor has provided a general introduction to the field of English folksong and substantial notes on all of the songs, citing related versions, historical allusions, etc. Amateur and professional singers will find this collection to be of unusually high quality, and it is of great interest to collectors, musicologists, and historians of culture."