logo The English and Scottish Popular Ballads
edited by Francis James Child (digital edition)

Unfortunately, this CD-ROM is still not yet available in the UK.

From 'Heritage Muse', a digital, searchable text on CD-ROM with linked glossaries, indexes, geographic gazetteer, essays, maps, and MIDI files of the tunes...  Plus a compilation audio CD with some of the top performers of traditional music.

The English and Scottish Popular Ballads, compiled and edited by Francis J Child and published in the last decade of the nineteenth century, is the standard reference for British ballads.  To describe a ballad as a 'Child ballad' is to immediately authenticate its bona fides. The original ten-part in five-volumes set, along with reprints from the mid-twentieth century are long out of print, occasionally available at high cost.

Marking the 120th anniversary of the 1882 publication, a digital edition of the complete set of original books has been developed for release in December 2002.  The price is $100 for the two CD-Rom package with the booklet and access to our "registered users" area on the web.  There is institutional pricing also available for schools and public libraries.

This new computerized edition offers fully searchable digital text of all 2600+ pages with enhanced study aids including glossary and index links, a new geographical gazetteer with ballad maps, computer playable MIDI files of all music notations, and new scholarly essays on the role of ballad scholarship in the coming century.  The work is available on CD-ROM (single user or network license) or through content providers via the INTERNET.  Each computerized text CD-ROM is accompanied by an audio CD (playable in a standard stereo CD player) containing 15 music tracks of outstanding, contemporary interpreters, preservers, and collectors of the living song tradition from around the world.

For the first time ever, this seminal work will be widely available to scholars, educators, and enthusiasts in a comprehensive digitally searchable and printable version. Individual ballads - or indeed the entire 2,600+ plus-page collection - can be printed out.  Looking up unfamiliar words is easy using built-in hyperlinks between lyrics and glossary.  The Gazetteer supplies the geographic location of places mentioned in the ballads with brief historic notes, and is cross-referenced to both the ballad texts and newly developed ballad maps.  Additional images, commentary, music tracks, and other enhanced content will be available on this web-site.

The English and Scottish Popular Ballads (digital edition) published jointly with ESPB Publising Ltd is the first in a series of works under The Heritage Collectors, a digital library of traditional music presented by Heritage Museum, Inc.

Each data CD-ROM in The Heritage Collectors Series includes:

Find - any word, phrase, or partial word one occurrence at a time
Search - for a list of occurrences of any word, phrase, or partial word.  This routine also allows for proximity, word stemming, "sounds like", and thesaurus searches. Audio CD (included with CD-ROM version)

New ballad tracks for the compilation audio CD reflect music styles ranging from solo un-accompanied song to contemporary folk-rock bands.  Recordings and interviews are included from artists such as Fairport Convention, Jean Ritchie, Peggy Seeger, Martin Carthy, Archie Fisher, Heather Heywood, John Roberts and Tony Barrand, Louis Killen, Caroline and Sandy Paton, Heather Wood, Anita Best, Tom Spiers and Larkin Bryant, Julia Friend, and Jen Larson, among others.  The performances include representative texts directly from or related to the Child Ballads including: The Keech i the Creal, Robin Hood and the Bishop of Hereford, Old Bangum, The Three Ravens, Lord Thomas and Fair Annet, Young Henry, Lady Margaret and Sweet William, Gypsie Laddie, The Battle of Otterburn and more.  There are historical ballads, murder ballads, humorous songs, and mystical stories, all illuminated by the singing traditions of Appalachia, Scotland, England, Newfoundland, and New England.  The accompanying liner notes and interview tracks offer insights into the artist's song selections, performance and style choices, and biographies.

ISBN: 0-9724471-0-5

For more information contact: info@heritagemuse.com   or Tel: (001) 212-721-9382


Rod Stradling - e-mail: rod@mustrad.org.uk    Tel: 01453 759475
snail-mail: 1 Castle Street, Stroud, Glos GL5 2HP, UK

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