The Cherry Tree Carol

Uploaded on 1 Dec 2009
Joan Baez ~ THE CHERRY TREE CAROL ~

“All collected versions of this most popular of the traditional Christmas carols contain additional verses telling of the birth, crucifixtion and resurrection of Jesus. Joan`s version, which uses only the cherry-tree narrative proper, has a feeling of completeness which leads one to guess that this may have been the carol`s original form. The cherry-tree verses derive from the aprocryphal New Testament, while the the additional verses are based on the approved gospels and may have been added at a later date to make the carol theologically “sound.” The melody used here derives from the singing of Maud Long for the Library of Congress. English and American texts are virtually identical, except for Joseph`s crucial outcry: “Let the father of the baby gather cherries for thee!” In the English texts Joseph is somewhat more literary and less passionate: “Let him pluck thee a cherry that brought thee with child.”

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