At the time, I knew that having the their first exposure to such a classic novel was wrong somehow, even though it seemed innocent enough. Most of the older neighborhood kids had seen the movie, so I followed the tend and let my kids watch the kidified (yeah, I made that word up) version of the classic by Mr. Dickens. But still what was lost in the translation of the classic still bothers me a little today. Oh not in a big way, but I know it has tainted the original message, feeling and meaning forever for my kids. Whenever the see a version of this classic, they will first think of Mickey Mouse.
When I was a very small child, my parents use to play the song “Scarborough Fair” by Simeon and Garfunkel. I was amazed by the song and I thought the two singers were geniuses. I couldn’t totally understand the words, but I knew the lyrics were a bit magical to me, and I was in awe of them. I often wondered how these two individuals came up with such striking lyrics! I really thought they were something special… But, in this case I was wrong!
You see the lyrics to “Scarborough Fair” and the basic melody has existed a bit before Simon and Garfunkel sung the classic song. In fact, it’s from Medieval times and had various versions of the ballad!
While there is a great chance that I would have never heard the song if it wasn’t sung by Simeon and Garfunkel, I think it’s a bit deceiving letting people believe that they created the ballad. Perhaps they did mention it on the album, and my parents knew and just never told me… But I bet a lot of you didn’t realize this little fact either.
It is a great song, but it wasn’t the original…
I wonder how many more things in life are like this great little song? Remakes of some other great piece of work by others in time? I know the original writers of this song is uncredited and unknown.
This is a simple example, but I wonder how often we miss hearing the original version of such works in its original context?
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