Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Local Group Report – Easebourne Thursday 20th October 2016

We had to move venues last Thursday owing to an ‘at home’ darts match at The Three Moles so we tried out The Chichester Inn hoping that regular Selham members wouldn’t mind the trek to Chichester and that the pub would be suitable.  As it was 21 singers arrived and the venue was excellent.  We sang a dozen songs, old favourites like Country Life and On Sussex Hills and we practised many of the new Christmas carols that we’re trying to learn. These included the Coppers Christmas Song, Masters in this Hall, While Shepherds Watched (to the tune of Pentonville) and Hark the Herald Angels (to Alan Wheeler’s tune). We also sang the Falmer Carol, the Gloucester Wassail, Sugar Wassail and the Cruel Mother and finished up with a spirited rendition of Rolling Home.

We thought the venue lent itself well to our singing. It was certainly a jolly evening! We’re back at the Three Moles on 17th November but homeless again for 15th December so may well go back to The Chichester Inn again for a Christmas get-together if all agreeable.

Saturday, 22 October 2016


For anyone interested in singing at our seasonal events this winter ... we have booked some more extra time at the Beechwood Hall Hotel in Worthing to help us prepare.

In addition to our regular gathering there on 2nd November we will be back on Wednesday 23rd November, from 7.30 - 10.00pm.

Do come along and join us if you can.

Local Group Report – Lewes Tuesday 18th October 2016

Sixteen singers make a good gathering for singing and harmonising. Tina started us with the autumnal Halnaker Mill before progressing to Christmas Now Is Drawing Near at Hand, The Moon Shone Bright, the flowery, Pentonville version of While Shepherds Watched, Poor Froze Out Gardeners and the seraphic Falmer Carol. The Woodcutter’s Song, Sweet Chiming Bells, Hark The Herald Angels Sing, Masters in This Hall, Coppers’ Christmas Song with the recent changes, Seasons Turn (in Cmaj - starting on G and the emphasis on THIS), Pleasant And Delightful. So you can see we worked hard on concentrating on winter songs. Dawn’s daughter made the mistake of saying she was too tired to go for a run and still gave her lungs a good workout. Cat came along for the first half only so as to get the baby used to regular bed times! Only five weeks to go. We finished the evening listening to Adrian’s lovely ballad – Jack and Jill.

AGM and Local Group Report – Beechwood, Wednesday 5th October 2016

About 25 singers arrived in time for the SDFS Annual General Meeting before our usual gathering at Beechwood this month, with more joining us in time for the singing.

At the AGM, in addition to the annual reports and elections for the committee (all current members were re-elected unopposed), there was time to share and discuss ideas and plans. This included a review of hopes to make a new SDFS recording, with agreement to go ahead and an appeal for volunteers to reply to the SDFS email address if they can help with this project. We looked at having another social Wassail in January 2017 (if a suitable venue can be found now that Heene Gallery has closed), and we debated again the pros and cons of colour co-ordinated outfits for public performances and considered having SDFS badges.  Watch this space for news of these and for details of events in the pipeline for 2017.

Our singing began a little late and thank you David for stepping up when Emily was needed at home and had to go.  We managed to cover some of the songs in the set planned for Slindon Apple Day and then tried a few of our seasonal songs including the Coppers’ Christmas Song and the newly-introduced Masters in this Hall and While Shepherds Watched (Pentonville).  A busy evening but always a pleasure and we look forward to having more time on these and other winter songs at our November and December sessions.

Thursday, 6 October 2016

Christmas Songs 2016

These are our new songs for the festive season. The words for these (pdf file) can be downloaded using this link. Also download the score for While Shepherds Watched (Pentonville) which includes the bass line as sung by Emily in the last two verses in the recording below (NB the score and recording are not in the same key).

You can download recordings of these songs using the links given below. NB If you have to pay to download data on a mobile device you should not play the songs directly from this web page, but instead download the mp3 files and play these.

The Coppers’ Christmas Song download mp3

Hark the Herald Angels Sing download mp3

Masters in this Hall download mp3

While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks (Pentonville) download mp3

Monday, 3 October 2016

Slindon Apple Day 2016

Saturday 8th October 10am - 4pm
In the field behind the Jubilee Orchard and The Forge in Reynolds Lane, Slindon.

Yes, it’s that day again and keeping fingers crossed that the weather will be as good as last year. If it is variable we have the adjacent village hall in reserve.

We will be singing the two song sets that we sang at Midhurst two weeks previously, at midday and 2.00pm, so please arrive by 11.30am especially with regard to parking.

Complimentary coffee, tea and biscuits will be provided in the hall during the day for contributors.

Parking will be either on the adjacent roads through the village, or in the field to the south of the hall if you don't mind picking your way around the sheep poo!

Look forward to seeing you there.

John C.

First set:
  1. Country Life
  2. Pleasant And Delightful
  3. On Sussex Hills
  4. Rolling In The Dew
  5. Rosebuds In June
  6. Run Of The Downs
  7. Smuggler’s Song
  8. West Sussex Drinking Song
  9. Hard Times Of Old England
  10. Green Grow The Laurel
  11. The Turnip Hoer

Second set:
  1. Oak, Ash And Thorn
  2. Twanky Dillo
  3. The Magpie
  4. The Woodcutter’s Song
  5. The Nightingale
  6. Fathom The Bowl
  7. Ebernoe Horn Fair
  8. Life Of A Man
  9. Thousands Or More
  10. Sussex By The Sea
  11. Jolly Good Song

Friday, 30 September 2016

Local Group Report – Lewes Tuesday 20th September 2016

The John Harvey Tavern is under new management and we found our usual tables laid up for full dinner, so 16 of us sat around three separate tables and managed to get through 14 songs. Tina had selected those that were on set lists, but also added some we haven’t done for a while. Country Life, Oak, Ash & Thorn, The Magpie, The Run of the Downs, A Smugglers Song, The Turnip Hoer, On Sussex Hills, Rosebuds in June, Ha'nacker Mill, Poor Froze-Out Gardeners, Where Stormy Winds Do Blow, The Constant Lovers, The Woodcutter's Song and Thousands Or More. We were very pleased that Cat could join us (31 weeks pregnant) and introduce her little man to our repertoire.

Friday, 23 September 2016

Local Group Report – Easebourne Thursday 15th September 2016

Thunder and lightning accompanied us at our Selham session on 15th September but eleven of us soldiered through with a rousing set of old and new songs in our repertoire including The Woodcutter's Song and Oak, Ash and Thorn. We're looking forward to singing at our 'home' ground at Midhurst on 24th September. Alan then gave us some lovely old Music Hall songs such as What a Mouth (What a North and South) and those of us old enough to remember them joined in. He then sang the lovely The Parting Song and for Emma, the Three Moles landlady, he sang The Freeborn Man of the Travelling People.

Thursday, 22 September 2016

Shoreham Wordfest Event

Dear Singers,
One of our members, Janet Behan, is performing a play she has written on 2nd October 2016, see the flyer below, it looks very interesting. More information.
See you soon
Peter Bo

Friday, 16 September 2016

Local Group Report – Beechwood, Wednesday 7th September 2016

We welcomed two new singers to our recent gathering to sing at the Beechwood. In preparation for our September events we raised our voices in praise of the Sussex Hills before singing the ‘Kipling songs’, and revisiting and refining our rendition of The Woodcutter’s song. The rich tones of The Magpie and rustic tones of The Turnip Hoer were enjoyed as ever, as were some old favourites Ebernoe Horn Fair, Rolling in the Dew and Ale Glorious Ale. Thanks to all contributors. Notices about our SDFS and other events of local interest were shared, and reminders were given about the extra session at the Beechwood on 28th September (to refresh our winter season repertoire), and about the AGM preceding the singing at the next regular Beechwood session on 5th October.