finding the collection a tune came from

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Jack Campin
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Joined: Tue Jul 07, 2009 1:54 am
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finding the collection a tune came from

Postby Jack Campin » Mon Aug 10, 2009 1:28 pm

I got curious about Chinese tunes. There is one tune that almost every Chinese folk band plays, under various names ("The Forbidden City" or "Singing and Dancing in the Village", for two). I've got it on three or four recordings, and I know I've got an ABC of it as well. I'd like to know more about its history.

Problem is, the ABC is in one of two files, HAN1.ABC and HAN2.ABC, each of which contains nearly 600 folk tunes with the titles only given in Chinese (which I can't read at all) and the text in German (which I can't read very well). The region each tune came from is carefully doumented, and there are some interesting remarks about them, but no editor or location for the files is stated in the text. It seems to have come from Seymour Shlien but there's nothing on his site to explain how such an astonishing collection came his way.

So, two questions.

1. Anybody know which of Shlien's tunes I'm after? It's a couple of years since I spotted it but I think it's latish on in one or other file, in a version different from any I have in audio.

2. Generally, could it be made easier to get from the search page to the file on its original site? That's where any explanation of what the transcriber was up to is going to be found.

And a general appeal: for chrissake, when you put an ABC file up on the web, put some identifying information in it so people can find you. Ideally, put it in every tune header.

cwalshaw
Site Admin
Posts: 63
Joined: Wed Jun 10, 2009 11:50 am

Re: finding the collection a tune came from

Postby cwalshaw » Mon Aug 10, 2009 10:53 pm

Hi Jack,

Jack Campin wrote:It seems to have come from Seymour Shlien but there's nothing on his site to explain how such an astonishing collection came his way.


There's a little about it here:
http://ifdo.ca/~seymour/runabc/esac/esacdatabase.html

which links to here:
http://www.esac-data.org/

Jack Campin wrote:1. Anybody know which of Shlien's tunes I'm after? It's a couple of years since I spotted it but I think it's latish on in one or other file, in a version different from any I have in audio.


Sorry - can't help with that one.

Jack Campin wrote:2. Generally, could it be made easier to get from the search page to the file on its original site? That's where any explanation of what the transcriber was up to is going to be found.


If you're talking about the search page on this site, it's not too difficult - from the search page, e.g.
http://abcnotation.com/searchTunes?q=china&f=c&o=a

click on "tune page" (just under the tune title). Then on that page, e.g.
http://abcnotation.com/tunePage?a=ifdo.ca/_seymour/runabc/esac/HAN2/0495

the first line says "In the file HAN2.abc from Seymour Shlien" and there are links from both "HAN2.abc" to the original abc file and "Seymour Shlien" to the root page of Seymour's collection (though it may not always be that easy to navigate from the latter to the former, depending on how the collection is organised).

Jack Campin wrote:And a general appeal: for chrissake, when you put an ABC file up on the web, put some identifying information in it so people can find you. Ideally, put it in every tune header.


Good point - ideally people should use the Z: field (e.g. to put in a URL or email address).

Hope this helps,

Chris


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