Wednesday, March 6, 2013

The Songcatcher and Me - my new book

It's almost there! I've just finished correcting the bound proof of my new novel, The Songcatcher and Me, and it will be published within the month. ( ISBN 978-1-927481-36-3).

The publisher is Baico Publishing Inc., 294 Albert Street, Suite 103, Ottawa, ON, K1P 6E6.  613-829-5141

The cover blurb reads: "It is 1957 and fourteen year old Sheila feels stalled, living with her tired grandmother and irritable uncle at their failing country store in the back of beyond. Then a songcatcher turns up and everything changes."

A songcatcher is a collector of folk songs, an ethnomusicologist. By now (2013), all the old folksongs of English/Irish/Scots origin in North America may well have been collected, written down and catalogued, but in the 1950s in Ontario this was not the case, and my novel takes readers back to those days.

The book includes nine "folksong" lyrics by myself. Obviously these are not authentic old songs; they are my attempt to write in the style and spirit of "genuine" folk songs. I would have liked to have quoted lyrics from known folk songs, but the trouble is, when these songs are arranged and recorded by a singer, that particular arrangement and set of lyrics is copyright of the singer.

I showed my nine "folksongs" to Pat Moore, an Ottawa singer/songwriter, who wrote a tune for one of them: "Beneath White Sails He'll Fly". The tune certainly elevates the poem and I hope she will use it someday on an album.

The Songcatcher and Me is aimed at teens/young adults, but older readers who want to travel back in time to the '50s are welcome too.

Contact Baico or myself for a copy.

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