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Northern Songs S-Z

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Northern Songs “S”

Scarpette Ricamate, Le

(Huei, Come Balla Ben, Uhe, Come La Bala Ben)

As sung by L’allegra Compagnia

Refrain:
Huei, come la bala ben quela lì (or, Uhe, come la balla ben, quella lì)
Huei, come la bala ben quela là
Huei, come la bala ben quela lì, quela lì, quela là

Le scarpette ricamate, ricamate di seta nera (pronounced “ricamade”)
Per andare a ballare la sera
Per andare a ballare la sera
Le scarpette ricamate, ricamate di seta nera
Per andare a ballare la sera
Sempre in cerca dei tirabüscion (pronounced “tirabüsciün”)

Refrain

Le scarpette ricamate, ricamate di seta rossa
Per andare a ballar con la mossa
Per andare a ballar con la mossa
Le scarpette ricamate, ricamate di seta rossa
Per andare a ballar con la mossa
Sempre in cerca dei tirabüscion

Refrain

Next, some additional verses (sung by three unidentified boys on Youtube):

Le scarpette ricamate, ricamate di seta gialla
Per andare a ballar nella stalla
Per andare a ballar nella stalla
Le scarpette ricamate, ricamate di seta gialla
Per andare a ballar nella stalla
Sempre in cerca dei tirabüscion

Refrain

Le scarpette ricamate, ricamate di seta rosa
Per andare a ballar con la sposa
Per andare a ballar con la sposa
Le scarpette ricamate, ricamate di seta rosa
Per andare a ballar con la sposa
Sempre in cerca dei tirabüscion

Refrain

Rough translation:

As sung by L’allegra Compagnia

Refrain:
Oh how well she dances, over here and over there and everywhere.

The dancing shoes embroidered with black silk, for going to dance in the evening. Always in search of a big corkscrew.

The dancing shoes embroidered with red silk, for going to dance with movement.
Always in search of a big corkscrew.

Refrain

Next, some additional verses (sung by three unidentified boys on Youtube):

The dancing shoes embroidered with yellow silk, for going to dance in the stable.
Always in search of a big corkscrew.

The dancing shoes embroidered with pink silk, for going to dance with the wife.
Always in search of a big corkscrew.

(“The Embroidered Dancing Shoes”. A jolly dancing tune. Is “a big corkscrew” intended to have another meaning? And I don’t get the last verse. I thought that all along they were singing about a woman, but suddenly someone is wearing pink(!) embroidered shoes to dance with the wife. Maybe by that time in the evening, with the wine flowing, everything is a bit mixed-up. Grade: C+.)

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Scior Sindich, El

(O Scior Sindich)
(compare with Bionda di Voghera, La)

(The lyrics, sung by the Andreoli family, are taken from the track “Andreoli – Era Samolaco” provided by Therese Cooper, with variant lyrics, from Samolaco Oggi E Ieri by Amletto Del Giorgio, indicated in brackets,)

A la sera seren serena {Ala sira, sirin sireta}
La bella figlia la va a spassar {La bèla figlia la va a spàs}
A la sera seren serena
La bella figlia la va a spassar
Per una strada si lunga lunga {giò per ‘na strada si lónga lónga}
Sotto l’ombra la si fermò {sóto}

Passa uno si la saluta {pàsa}
Passa ‘n altro la varda là
E passa via su primo amore {e fin che la pàsa ‘l so primo amore}
E un bacino si lu ‘l ghe dà
E passa via su primo amore
E un bacino si lu ‘l ghe dà

Alla sera seren serena
la bella figlia la torna a ca’ {in ca’}
e la che disse con la sua mama {la ghe raconta ala suài mama}
Mama mia, m’han bacià
e la che dise con la sua mamma
Mama mia, m’han bacià

Se t’han baciato figlietta mia
prendi la chiave poi va a dormir {durmì}
Doman mattina, ma di un bon’ora {duman matina}
Dal Sciór Sindich anderòi mi
Doman mattina, ma di un bon’ora {duman matina}
Dal Sciór Sindich anderòi mi

O Scior Sindich, O Signor Sindich {O sciór sindich, o lü sciór sindich}
Ascoltate la mia ragion
Si mi han baciato la figlia mia
E ne voglio soddisfazion
Si mi han baciato la figlia mia
E ne voglio soddisfazion

Soddisfazione che voi volete {Ma che sodisfazion volete}
La vostra figlia detene a ca’ {tignìla in ca}
E non lasciatela anda a strada
Far l’amore con quel solda’
E non lasciatela andar per strada
A far l’amore con che quel solda’ {cun i suldà}

I miei soldati, soldati belli {I soldati son brava gente}
Che l’amore la san ben fà
Lor gh’imprometon ma di sposarla
Poi la lascia la libertà {poi la lasciano in abbandon}
Lor gh’imprometon ma di sposarla
Poi la lascia la libertà

Rough translation:

In the serene evening
The beautiful daughter went out to pass the time.
(repeat)
She went on a long road
And stopped in the shade.

One man came along and greeted her.
Another passed by and looked at her.
And then her first love passed by,
And gave her a little kiss.
(repeat last two lines)

(Same pattern below)

In the serene evening
The beautiful daughter returned home,
And she told her mother,
“They have kissed me.”

If they have kissed you, my little daughter,
Take the key and go to sleep.
Tomorrow morning, first thing,
I will go to the mayor.

Oh Sir Mayor, oh Sir Mayor,
Hear my plea.
They have kissed my daughter
And I want satisfaction.

As for the satisfaction that you want,
Keep your daughter at home
And don’t let her walk around the streets
To make love with those soldiers.

My soldiers, my fine soldiers
Know well how to make love.
They promise to marry the girl
Then drop her.

(“Mr. Mayor”. I am assuming that “sindich” is the local word for “sindaco”, the mayor or sindic of a comune (township). This tells of a time when daughters were expected to be kept home and protected. Any mishap was, apparently, the family’s dishonor. Still this is a beautiful old folksong. Grade: A.)

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La Figlia del Borghese

These lyrics, found on http://www.inilossum.it, tell a story very similar to that of El Scior Sindich. It seems to have been a popular theme.

La bella figlia del borghese
E che per acqua la se n’va;
quando fu sta’ a metà la strada
la mise a riposar.

La riposa e poi la dorme
E soto l’ombra d’un bel fior;
passò di lì un ufiziale
e un bel bacio el g’ha donà.

La bela figlia torna a casa
E lo racconta al suo papà:
“O papà, mio caro papà,
Un ufiziale el m’ha bacià!”

“Vegnirà doman matina
da la giustizia noi andrem!”
“O Giustizia, cara Giustizia
Mi voria sodisfazion!”

La sodisfazion l’è questa:
de tegner la figlia a cà.
E no lasciarla fuor di note
Co gli ufiziali a far l’amor.

Rough translation:

The pretty daughter of the burgher
Went out to get water.
When she was out in the street
She stopped to rest.

She rested and then she slept,
Under the shade of a beautiful flower.
An officer passed by there,
And gave her a nice kiss.

The beautiful daughter returned home
And told her father.
“Oh father, my dear father,
An officer kissed me!”

“Come tomorrow morning
We will go to the judge!”
“Oh judge, dear judge,
I would have satisfaction!”

This is the satisfaction:
Take your daughter home
And don’t let her go out at night
To make love with the officers.

(“The Daughter of the Townsman”. Similar tale and same “moral” as in El Scior Sindich. I think a lot has to be read into this story. Did she really go out just to get water and innocently fall asleep? In any case, once again the girl (or her family) seems to get most of the blame. I have not heard this song, so will not grade it.)

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Sciur Padrun da li Béli Braghi Bianchi

First, as sung by the great Giovanna Daffini:

Refrain:
Sciur padrun da li béli braghi bianchi (Mr. Boss, with the nice white pants)
Fora li palanchi, fora li palanchi (pronounced “fuera” or “foera”))
Sciur padrun da li béli braghi bianchi
Fora li palanchi ch’ anduma a cà (fork over the money so we can go home)

A scüsa sciur padrun
Sa l’èm fat tribüler
Che era li prèmi volti (or, i era li prèmi volti; or, l’eran)
Che era li prèmi volti
A scüsa sciur padrun
Sa l’èm fat tribüler
Che era li prèmi volti
Ca ‘n saiévum cuma fèr

Refrain

Prèma al rancaun
E po’ dopu a ‘l sciancàun
E adés ca l’èm tot via
E adés ca l’èm tot via
Prèma al rancaun
E po’ dopu a ‘l sciancàun
E adés ca l’èm tot via
Al salutém a po’ andèm via

Refrain

E non va più a mesi
E nemmeno a settimane
La va a pochi giorni (or, a poche ore)
La va a pochi giorni
E non va più a mesi
E nemmeno a settimane
La va a pochi giorni
E poi dopo andiamo a cà

Refrain

E quando al treno a scëffla
I mundèin a la stassion
Con la cassiétta in spala
Con la cassiétta in spala
E quando al treno a scëffla
I mundèin a la stassion
Con la cassiétta in spala
Su e giù per i vagon

Refrain

Next, an additional verse sung by L’allegra Compagnia:

E quando che el tren arriva
Arriva a la stassion
Sarem ‘rivadi a casa
Sarem ‘rivadi a casa
E quando che el tren arriva
Arriva a la stassion
Sarem ‘rivadi a casa
Col saluti di sciur padrun

Next, some other verses:

Al nostar sciur padrun
L’è bon come ‘l bon pan
Da stér insëma a l’érsën
Da stér insëma a l’érsën
Al nostar sciur padrun
L’è bon come ‘l bon pan
Da stér insëma a l’érsën
Al dis – Fé andèr cal man –

Incö l’è l’ultim giürën
E adman l’è la partenza
Farem la riverenza
Farem la riverenza
Incö l’è l’ultim giürën
E adman l’è la partenza
Farem la riverenza
Al noster sciur padrun

Quando saremo a casa
Dai nostri fidanzati
Ci daremo tanto baci
Ci daremo tanto baci
Quando saremo a casa
Dai nostri fidanzati
Ci daremo tanto baci
Tanti baci in quantità

My rough translation:

Refrain:
Sir boss with the beautiful white pants
Shell out the money, shell out the money
Sir boss with the beautiful white pants
Shell out the money, so we can go home

Excuse us, Mr. Boss
If we have made trouble for you
It was our first time, it was our first time
Excuse us, Mr. Boss
If we have made trouble for you
It was our first time, we did not know how to do it.

(same pattern below)

First the weeds were uprooted
And then they were cut
And just now we have removed them all
We salute you and are going off

There is less than a month
Not even a week
Only a few days
And then we will go home

And when the train whistles
The weeders will be at the station
With their bags on their shoulders
Up and down the whole train

And when the train arrives
Arrives at the station
We will be home
With regards from Mr. Boss

Our Mr. Boss is good
Like good bread
He always stays up on the bank
Saying, “Use those hands!”

Today is the last day
And tomorrow is the departure
We will give a bow (pay our respects)
To our Mr. Boss

When we are at the homes
Of our sweethearts
We’ll give them lots of kisses
Plenty of kisses

(“Sir Boss with the Nice White Trousers”. A song of the rice field weeders (le mondine). I have seen comments by different Italians stating that the text is in Lombard, or Emilian, or some other “dialect”. One French source says that the language is a sort of pidgin, since the women came from different districts in the north and worked out a common language from among their various dialects. That source also says there is an implication of sabotage in the work, intentionally reversing the steps for cutting and uprooting weeds and transplanting the rice. Grade: B+.)

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Sem Valtellin

         (Noi Som Alpin; Mi Son Alpin; Num Semm Alpinn)

Noi som Alpin          (or, Noi sem, or Nil sem)
A n’ piase ‘l vin
Gh’avem l’innamorada, gh’avem l’innamorada
Noi som Alpin
A n’ piase ‘l vin
Gh’avem l’innamorada, ‘tacà al quartier

Same pattern as above:

Vicin al quartier
Alla caserma
Tengo ‘na bella serva, tengo ‘na bella serva
Vicin al quartier
Alla caserma
Tengo ‘na bella serva per fare l’amor.

Cantare e ber
Fare l’amor
Son per un vecio Alpino, son per un vecio Alpino
Cantare e ber
Fare l’amor
Son per un vecio Alpino un gran dover

Other versions:

Mi son Alpin, me pias el vin           (or, nui suma alpin, am pias el vin)
Tengo l’innamorata, in fondo al quartier

Other verses (entitled Num Semm Alpinn), found on http://www.inilossum.it

Num Semm Alpinn

Num semm Alpinn, num semm Alpinn
Ghe pias el vin, ghe pias el vin
Gavem l’innamurada, gavem l’innamurada
Num semm Alpinn, num semm Alpinn
Ghe pias el vin, ghe pias el vin
Gavem l’innamurada sempre visin,
Sempre visin

((Same pattern below.))

Tacà al quartier
Vicino alla caserma,
gavem ‘na bella serva
per far l’amor

Per far l’amor
Senza pensier
Ghe vor con del bon vino
Pien i biccerr!

Cantar e ber
Fare l’amor
Ma son per un Vecio Alpino
Un gran dover!

Rough translation:

We are Alpine soldiers
And we love wine
We have girlfriends, we have girlfriends
We are Alpine soldiers
And we love wine
We have girlfriends, near our quarters

Same pattern as above:

Near our quarters
At the barracks
I’ve got a pretty maid, I’ve got a pretty maid
Near our quarters
At the barracks
I’ve got a pretty maid, for making love.

To sing and drink
And make love
Are for a veteran Alpine soldier
Great duties

To make love
With no worries
You need some good wine.
Fill the glass!

(“We Are From Valtellin”. Valtellin is a valley in Lombardy, north of Milan. There must have been original verses, but most of the ones here have been changed to brag about the drinking and loving exploits of Alpine soldiers, including the verse: “It is the duty of the Alpine soldier to sing, drink and make love.” Grade: B.)

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Smortina, La

Tutti dicon che sono smortina
Ma è l’amor che mi rovina
Quando poi sarò sposina
I miei colori ritorneranno.

L’altra sera mi sono sognata,
di trovarmi a te vicino           [I found myself]
con la testa sul tuo cuscino (pillow)
e mi giravo di qua e di là
e mi giravo di qua e di là.

Another verse, found on http://www.inilossum.it:

Se l’è vero che tu mi ami,
dammi un pegno del tuo amore (a token, pledge)
fai contento sto misero cuore
e poi di gioa io morirò

Rough translation:

Everybody calls me the pale one
But it’s love that is ruining me.
When I become a bride
My colors will return.

The other night I was dreaming.
I found myself near you.
I cushioned my head on your arm
And you took me here and there.

Another verse:

If it’s true that you love me,
Give me a pledge of your love,
Make this miserable heart content
And then I will die of joy.

(“The Pallid Girl”. It is love that has ruined her, but once she is married her colors will return. A beautiful song. Grade: B.)

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Son Bersaglier di Sangue Bon

  (Di Sangue Bon; L’Innamorata)
(similar to Sem Valtellin, etc.)

Son Bersaglier (son Bersaglier) di sangue bon (di sangue bon)
Tengo l’innamorata, tengo l’innamorata
Son Bersaglier (son Bersaglier) tengo le piume sul cappell
Tengo l’innamorata vicino al quartier

La ritirà (??te giua suonar ??)
Io devo andar (io devo andar)
L’innamorata piange, l’innamorata piange
La ritirà (??te giua suonar ??)
Io devo andar (io devo andar)
Dammi un bacin d’amore
?? a la ?? Bersaglier

(repeat)

(Next, to a different melody:)

Io sento il gioco de la scorriata         (gioco = fool ??)
La bella innamorata d’un ??carretier??
Se innamorata de la scorriata
?? ci un balla lire lira ?? fare l’amor

La senta il gioco de la scorriata
La bella innamorata d’un ??carretier??
Se innamorata de la scorriata
?? ci un balla lire lira ?? fare l’amor

Rough translation:

I am a crack marksman of good stock.
I have a girlfriend, I have a girlfriend
I am a crack marksman; I have the feathers in my hat.
I have a girlfriend near headquarters.

The retreat is sounded, I ought to go.
My sweetheart cries, my sweethear cries.
The retreat is sounded, I ought to go.
Give your marksman a kiss of love.

(repeat)

(Next, to a different melody:)

?I feel like a fool being beaten.
The beautiful lover of a wagoner.
Beloved by ?????
It’s a ball to make love.

(“I am a Light Infantryman of Good Blood”. The Bersaglieri were (are?) soldiers of a crack corps in the Italian army, sharpshooters. In this song, like the case of the Alpine soldiers in Sem Valtellin, the Bersagliere gets to brag a bit about his prowess as a lover. Grade: B.)

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Spazzacamin, El

(dal dialetto Milanese)

Su e giù per la contrade, di qua e di là si sente
‘na voce allegramente, ‘na voce allegramente
Su e giù per la contrade, di qua e di là si sente
‘na voce allegramente, ‘riva el spazzacamin

S’affacia a la finestra, la bella signorina
Con voce graziosina, con voce graziosina
S’affacia a la finestra, la bella signorina
Con voce graziosina, ciama el spazzacamin

Prima lo fa entrare, e poi lo fa sedere
Gli dà mangiare e bere, gli dà mangiare e bere
Prima lo fa entrare, e poi lo fa sedere
Gli dà mangiare e bere, per poi spazzà el camin

E dopo aver mangiato, mangiato e ben bevuto
Gli fa vedere il buco, gli fa vedere il buco
E dopo aver mangiato, mangiato e ben bevuto
Gli fa vedere il buco, il buco del camin

E quel che mi rincresce, O caro giovinetto
Che il mio camin l’è stretto, che il mio camin l’è stretto
E quel che mi rincresce, O caro giovinetto
Che il mio camin l’è stretto, com’ el farà a passar

Non dubitar signora, son vecchio del mestiere
So fare il mio dovere, so fare il mio dovere
Non dubitar signora, son vecchio del mestiere
So fare il mio dovere, su e giù per il camin

E dopo quattro mesi, la luna va crescendo
La gente va dicendo, la gente va dicendo
E dopo quattro mesi, la luna va crescendo
La gente va dicendo, l’è lo spazzacamin

E dopo nove mesi, è nato un bel bambino
Che somigliava tutto, che somigliava tutto
E dopo nove mesi, è nato un bel bambino
Che somigliava tutto, a lo spazzacamin

Rough translation:

Up and down the neighborhood, here and there is heard
A cheerful voice, a happy voice.
Up and down the neighborhood, here and there is heard
A happy voice: “The chimney sweep is coming!”

The beautiful young lady looks out the window.
With a gentle voice, with a graceful voice,
The beautiful young lady looks out the window.
With a gentle voice, she calls the chimney sweep.

First she had him enter, then she had him sit.
She had him eat and drink, she gave him food and drink.
First she had him enter, then she had him sit.
She had him eat and drink, so that he could then clean the chimney.

And after he had eaten, eaten and drunk his fill,
She made him see the hole, she made him see the hole.
And after he had eaten, eaten and drunk his fill,
She made him see the hole, the chimney hole.

And what I regret, oh dear young man,
Is that my chimney hole is tight.
And what I regret, oh dear young man,
Is that my chimney hole is tight. How can it get through?

Never doubt, lady, I’m an old hand at this.
I’ll do my duty, I’ll do my duty.
Never doubt, lady, I’m an old hand at this.
I’ll do my duty, up and down the chimney.

And after four months, the moon is growing,
The people are saying, the people are saying.
And after four months, the moon is growing,
The people are saying, “It’s the chimney sweep.”

And after nine months a beautiful baby was born
That completely resembled, that completely resembled.
And after nine months a beautiful baby was born
That completely resembled the chimney sweep.

(“The Chimney-Sweep”. Everyone cheers when he comes to town. He is a master of his trade, doing a great job for the lady of the house. But nine months later, a beautiful baby looks just like him. Grade: A-.)

———————————————————-

Canzone dello Spazzacamino

This is a completely different song from the one above, but has the same title and subject matter – the chimney sweep. It was recalled by and sung to me by my cousin, Dr. Louis Bertolotti. He was brought up in Ferno, near Milan. While he was attending school in nearby Gallarate during the Second World War (he and his elders had to hide his American citizenship from the Germans), he and the other students played and sang and pursued other activities at the Oratorio. He was “scouted” as having a good voice, and a student Jesuit taught him this song. He wrote down the words for me, to the best of his recollection after so many decades.

Oh . . . Oh . . . spazzacamin
Spazzacamino, spazzacamino
Ho freddo, ho fame, son poverino
In riva al lago, ove son nato
C’è mia mamma, abbandonata.
Come l’uccello che lascia il nido
Per guadagnare qualche quattrin.                   (to seek a little money)
Tutto il giorno vo attorno e grido
Spazzacamino spazzacamino, spazzacamin.

Torino è grande, ma il paesello
Ove son nato mi par più bello,
E sempre sempre vado col core
In riva al nostro Lago Maggiore.
E dico intanto, Nel casolare
La mamma mia che mai farà?
Sarà seduta al focolare,
Oppure le reti aggiusterà?

Non ho nessuno che mi vuol bene,
E che s’affligga delle mie pene.
Ho gli occhi foschi, la faccia oscura,
Ai fanciuletti metto paura.
Sì, poveretto, sì, brutto io sono,
Perfin la mamma dice al bambin:
Se d’ora innanzi non sarai buono,
Chiamerò il nero spazzacamin!

Se ho sete, bevo dell’ acqua pura,
Se ho fame mangio pan di mistura
E vo soffiando sopra le dita
Quando la mano ho intirizzita.
Con le mie scarpe che sono rotte
Ho nella neve da camminar,
E con un soldo per ogni notte,
Ho un po’ di paglia per riposar.

E quando, al sorgere del bel mattino,
Ascolto il gemito del passerino
Che par cantando, onori iddio,
Allor mi sveglio, Lo prego anch’io
Prego che presto m’arrivi il giorno
Che al mio paese posso tornar.
Veder la mamma, saltarle attorno,
Metterle in mano tanti quattrin.

Ma se, arrivato, mi si facesso
Incontro alcuno e mi dicesse
Prendi, bambino, questo sentiero           (or, prendi, fanciullo)
Che ti conduce al cimitero
Ove la terra appena smossa                     (freshly tilled, dug up)
Non ha un fil d’erba, un fiorellino
La seppellita, entro una fossa
C’è la tua mamma.
Spazzacamin, spazzacamin.

Rough translation:

Oh . . . Oh . . . chimney sweep
Chimney sweep, chimney sweep
I’m cold, I’m hungry, I’m poor.
By the lake, where I was born,
There’s my mom, abandoned.
Like the bird that leaves the nest,
To seek some money
All day long I go around and cry,
“Chimney sweep, chimney sweep, chimney sweep!”

Turin is grand, but the village
Where I was born seems to me more beautiful.
And always, always I go in my heart
To the shore of our Lake Maggiore,
While I say, “In our cottage,
What ever will mother be doing?
Will she be sitting at the fireplace,
Or mending the nets?”

I have no one who loves me
And who comforts my pains.
I have gloomy eyes, a dark face,
I scare the children.
Yes, poor fellow, yes, I’m ugly.
Even the mother tells her child:
“If you’re not good from now on,
I’ll call the black chimney sweep!”

If I’m thirsty, I drink just water,
If I’m hungry I eat bread of mixed grains,
And I blow on my fingers
When my hand gets numb.
With my shoes that are broken
I walk through the snow,
And with a penny each night
I have a little straw to lie down on.

And when, at the dawn of a fine morning,
I listen to the twittering of the sparrow
Which seems to be singing honors to God,
Then I get up. I pray to Him, too,
I pray that soon the day will come
When I can go back to my country,
See Mom, cavort around with her,
And put many coins in her hand.

But, arriving home,
I meet someone who tells me,
“Take, child, this path
That leads you to the cemetery
Where the freshly dug-up earth
Has not a blade of grass, nor a little flower.
There, buried in a grave,
Is your mother.”
Chimney sweep, chimney sweep.

(“The Song of the Chimney Sweep”. This is considered to be one of the classic nursery rhymes (filastrocche per bambini), although it seems a bit grim to be sung to children. In an Internet search, I found a portion of it used as a sample in an 1879 grammar exercise book, so it goes back before that date. According to an article in Italian Wikipedia, the Valley of Vigezzo, in Piedmont near Lombardy, is called the “Valley of the Chimneysweeps” for the large number of young people who emigrated from there to northern Europe in the 17th and 18th centuries to carry out that trade. This must be their song, since it references Lake Maggiore, which is not far from Val Vigezzo. I have not yet “graded” this song, as I am not very familiar with the tune.)

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Sta Campagnola

Quando fa notte
In campagna non si va
Morire lei mi fa
Sta campagnola

(Repeat each verse and each chorus)

Chorus:
Che bel faccin che la g’ha
Che bel nasin che la g’ha
Che bel boccin che la g’ha
Sta campagnola

Quando fa giorno
Su i campi a lavorar
Cantar si fa sentir
Sta campagnola

Rough translation:

When night falls
I don’t go out to the countryside
She is to die for
That country girl.

(Repeat each verse and each chorus)

Chorus:

What a pretty face she has
What a pretty little nose
What a pretty little mouth
That country girl

When day breaks
Off to the fields to work
She makes me want to sing
That country girl

(“That Country Girl”. Regardless of whether I’m resting at night or working in the fields by day, thinking of the lovely face of that girl makes me want to sing. Grade: A.)

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Stelutis Alpinis

In Friulian. Written during World War I by Arturo Zardini, from Pontebba in Udine. I have rendered a rough translation.

Se tu vens cassù tas cretis
Là che lôr mi àn soterât
A l’è un splàz plen di stelutis
Dal mio sanc l’è stât bagnât

Par segnâl, une crosute
Je scolpide lì tal cret
Frà chês stellis nàs l’erbute
Sot di lôr jo duàr cuièt

Ciòl su ciòl une stelute
Je à ricuarde il nostri ben
Tu i daràs ‘ne bussadute
E po’ plâtile tal sen

Quand che a ciase tu sês sole
E di cùr tu preìs par me
Il mio spirt atôr ti svole
Jo e la stele sin cun te

Translation:

If you come up here on the rocky crag
Where they buried me
There is a clearing full of edelweiss
That was bathed with my blood

As a sign there is a small cross
Carved there in the rock
Grass grows between the edelweiss
And below I sleep in peace

Pick, pick an edelweiss
To remind you of our love
You will give it a little kiss
And then hide it in your breast

When you are alone at home
And you pray in your heart for me
My spirit will be around you
The edelweiss and I will be with you

(“Edelweiss”. “Stelle Alpine” in standard Italian. This song has become a hymn of Alpine soldiers. I try not to include many military songs but this one is very poetic and is dear to the Friulians. Grade: B.)

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Sul Monte Grappa         (La Ricciolina; Il Militare; Bersaglieri Song)

Sul Monte Grappa ci sta una ricciolina (3 times)
Che fa l’amore col Bersaglier (2 times) (or, col militar)

(same pattern below))

O Ricciolina, tu sei la mia morosa
Sei la morosa del Bersaglier

Oh Bersagliere, cammina un pò più piano!
Se no la mamma ci sentirà

Se la ci sente, no ci fa andare in camera
Così l’amore non si può far

Il Bersagliere la bacia e poi va via
Col passo lesto da Bersaglier (or, E quando torna la sposerà)

La Ricciolina, la piange e con ragione
Per la passione del Bersaglier

A quattro mesi la luna va crescendo
E per l’amore di un Bersaglier

A nove mesi è nato un bel bambino
Facendo presto, da Bersaglier (or, con la divisa da bersaglier)

A cinque anni andava in bicicletta
Col pennacchietto da Bersaglier (small plume) (or, con la cariola)

Ed a venti anni era sottotenente
Nel reggimento del suo papa.

Rough translation:

On Monte Grappa there is a curly-haired girl (3 times)
Who made love with a sharpshooter (2 times)

(same pattern below)

Oh curly hair, you are my girlfriend
You are the girlfriend of the Bersaglier soldier

Oh sharpshooter, walk a little more softly
Or else my mother will hear us

If she hears us, she won’t let us go into the room
So we won’t be able to make love

The sharpshooter kissed her and then went away
With the fast pace of a Bersagliere (or, when he returns he will marry her)

The curly haired girl cried, and with good reason
For the passion of the Bersagliere

At four months the moon was growing
And for the love of a Bersagliere

At nine months a beautiful baby was born
Soon making a Bersagliere (or, in the uniform of a Bersagliere)

At five years he went around on a bicycle
With feathers in his cap like a Bersagliere (or, with the cart of a Bersagliere)

And at twenty years he was a lieutenant
In his father’s regiment

(“On Mt. Grappa”. Monte Grappa is in the Veneto part of the Alps and was the location of heavy fighting in WWI. The words are typically set to a marching tune. The theme is a common one in these folksongs: A pretty girl is seduced and abandoned by a guy passing through. The baby grows up to take after his old man. (In the version here, at age twenty he joins his father’s regiment.) In some versions the Casanova is a Bersagliere (elite infantryman), in others just a regular soldier. There undoubtedly are other variations. Grade: C+.)

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Sul Ponte di Bassano

         (anonymous; from World War I)

(Preface:)

Eccole che la riva
Sta bele moscardine
Son fresche e verdoline
Colori no ghe n’à.

Colori no ghe nemo        (or, no ghe n’avemo)
Ne manco gh’en serchemo        (or, a gnanca gh’en serchemo)
Ma un canto noi faremo
Al Ponte di Bassan.

(Main song:)

Sul Ponte di Bassano
Là ci darem la mano       (some versions sing the first two lines twice)
Noi ci darem la mano
Ed un bacin d’amor, ed un bacin d’amor, ed un bacin d’amor

Per un bacin d’amore
Succedon tanti guai         (or, succese)
Non lo credevo mai
Doverti abbandonar, doverti abbandonar, doverti abbandonar

Doverti abbandonare
Volerti tanto bene           (or, ma te voglio tanto bene)
Queste son le catene        (or, è un giro di catene, or, rompere il catene)
Che m’incatena il cor, che m’incatena il cor, che m’incatena il cor        (or, cuor)

Che m’incatena il cuore,
sara la mia morosa
A maggio va a sposa
E mi vo fa soldà, e mi vo fa soldà, e mi vo fa soldà

E mi vo fa alpino
Dal quinto regimento          (or, Al)
Non partirò contento
Se non ti avrò sposà, se non ti avrò sposà, se non ti avrò sposà.

(Alternate verses)

che m’incatena il cuore
che m’incatena i fianchi         (flanks, sides)
in mona tutto quanti
quelli che mi vol mai, quelli che mi vol mai, quelli che mi vol mai.

Or,

Che m’incatena il cuore
Che m’incatena il fianco
Non posso far di manco (do more than)
Di piangere e sospirar, pianger e sospirar, pianger e sospirar.

Che m’incatena il cuore, che m’incatena i fianchi!
In mona tutti quanti
Quelli che mi vol mal, quelli che mi vol mal, quelli che mi vol mal.

Another (final?) verse:

Che m’incatena il core
Che m’incatena a vita!
Ohimè che son tradita
Per un bacin d’amor.

Rough translation:

(Preface:)

?? Look, they have arrived,
Those pretty fashionable girls
They are fresh and verdant
We have no colors

We have no colors at all
And lack a rainbow ??
But we’ll make a song
On the Bridge of Bassano

(Main song:)

On the Bridge of Bassano
There we held hands (some versions sing the first two lines twice)
We held hands
And shared a little kiss of love

From a little kiss of love
Came so many woes
I will never believe you
I ought to leave you

I ought to leave you
But I love you
These are the chains
That shackle my heart

What shackles my heart
Is my girlfriend
She’ll be married in May
And I go off to be a soldier

I’ll go to be an Alpine soldier
Of the Fifth Regiment
But I won’t leave happily
If I don’t marry you

(Alternate verses)

That which chains my heart
That which shackles my sides
Are all those fools
Who do not want me ever

Or,

That which chains my heart
That which shackles my sides – –
I can’t do more
Than cry and sigh

Another (final?) verse:

That which chains my heart
That which shackles my life – –
Alas, I am betrayed
By a little kiss of love.

(“On Bassano Bridge”. By coincidence, this song is related to Sul Monte Grappa, above. Bassano used to be called Bassano Veneto, but the name was changed to Bassano del Grappa after WWI, to commemorate the battles fought on nearby Monte Grappa. It is also apparently where grappa was first made. The bridge in Bassano is old and famous, but here it is simply the site for a love song. The lovers fall in love holding hands on the bridge. Then they fall apart, the woman set to wed another man, the singer due to join the army (an Alpine regiment, of course; according to Wikipedia, Bassano Bridge is revered by the Alpini). But he will not part contented unless he can get her to change her mind and marry him. This is set to a march tune. Grade: A-.)

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Sulla Montagna

(Vieni Piccina)

(From the track “Andreoli – Era Samolaco” recorded in 1976 and provided by Therese Cooper. It was sung by her Andreoli family members. Additional lyrics {in brackets}found at http://www.inilossum.it)

Lassù sulla montagna con me ti porterò
Sarai la mia compagna e sempre t’amerò.

Vieni piccina, non farmi più soffrir (or, vieni la piccina)
L’alba è vicina, è l’ora di partir.

Tra i pini della vetta c’è un nido per l’amor, (vetta = summit)
Da tempo là ci aspetta quel mazzolin dei fior

Vieni piccina, non farmi più soffrir
L’alba è vicina, è l’ora di partir.

{Che importa se cade la neve
L’amor ci saprà riscaldar (riscaldar = to heat up; to inflame)
Sui monti, piccina, si deve
Col sole e col gelo felici cantar.}

Vieni piccina, non farmi più soffrir
L’alba è vicina, è l’ora di partir.

Rough translation:

I will take you with me up there on the mountain
You will be my partner and I will love you always

Refrain:
Come, little one, do not make me suffer anymore
Dawn is near, it is time to depart

Among the pines of the summit there is a nest for love
That little bunch of flowers has been waiting there for us

Refrain

{So what if the snow falls. Love will warm us.
Up in the mountains, little one, you must sing happily with the sun and with the frost}

Refrain

(“Up on the Mountain”. There’s a love nest there among the pines. Grade: A.)

####################################

Chicken Cacciatore

This was a favorite of my uncle Bruno Mazzer.

Ingredients (based on a 3-lb. chicken; adjust accordingly for different weight)

3 lbs. spring chicken (or frying chicken), cut in pieces
½ cup flour
½ cup oil or butter
¼ cup chopped onion
1 clove garlic, chopped fine
½ cup chopped carrot
¼ cup chopped parsley
¼ lb. fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 basil leaf
1 bay leaf
1 No. 2 can of tomatoes (or fresh tomatoes, in season)
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. or more of black pepper
¼ cup marsala, sherry or white wine

Directions:

Dredge the chicken in flour, sprinkle with salt and brown slowly in oil or butter until golden brown on all sides in a big frying pan, Le Creuset or the like. Remove the chicken and place it in a covered dish in a warm place. Brown the onion, garlic, carrot, parsley, basil and bay leaf in the oil or butter left in the frying pan. Add the tomatoes, crushed, to the browned vegetables in the frying pan. Add the salt and pepper and bring this to a boil. Add the chicken and wine and simmer for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until the chicken is tender and the sauce is at the desired consistency.

Tips: Shortening can be used instead of oil or butter.

You can add 1 tsp. of dried oregano, green pepper, substitute red for white wine, etc.

You can use tomato paste (1 small can) instead of tomatoes.

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Northern Songs “T”

Ta Pum!

Venti giorni sull’Ortigara
Senza il cambio per dismontà
Ta pum ta pum ta pum, ta pum ta pum ta pum

Ho lasciato la mamma mia
L’ho lasciata per fare il soldà
Ta pum ta pum ta pum, ta pum ta pum ta pum

E domani si va l’assalto         (or, ?? ci va??)
Soldatino, non farti ammazzar
Ta pum ta pum ta pum, ta pum ta pum ta pum

Dietro ponte c’è un cimitero         (or, Nelle valle c’è un cimitero)
Cimitero di noi soldà
Ta pum ta pum ta pum, ta pum ta pum ta pum

Cimitero di noi soldà
Presto un giorno ti vengo a trovar           (I’ll see you there someday soon)
Ta pum ta pum ta pum, ta pum ta pum ta pum

Other verses:

Quando portano la pagnotta            (the payroll)
Il cecchino comincia a sparar         (magpie; i.e., machine gun)
Ta pum ta pum ta pum, ta pum ta pum ta pum

Quando sei dietro a quel muretto
Soldatino non puoi più parlà

Con la testa pien de peoci
Senza il rancio da consumà             (mess, ration)

Quando poi si dicende a valle
Battaglione non ha più soldà

Battaglione di tutti i morti
Noi giuriamo l’Italia salvar            (swear, oath)

Battaglione di tutti i morti
A Milano quanti imboscà         (shirk, find a cushy job in wartime, hide)

Queste povere vedovelle
Non si possono più consolà

Con la gamba ancora fasciata           (bandaged)
Reggimento mi toca tornà             (my turn to return)

Rough translation:

Tweny days on Mount Ortigara
Without being relieved
Ka-boom, ka-boom, ka-boom, ka-boom, ka-boom, ka-boom

(same pattern below)

I left my mother
I left her to become a soldier

And tomorrow we attack
Soldier, don’t get yourself killed

Across the bridge there is a cemetery
A cemetery for us soldiers

A cemetery for us soldiers
Someday soon I’ll go find you there

Other verses:
When they bring the bread
The sniper starts to shoot

When you are behind that little wall
Soldier, you will no longer be able to speak

With a head full of filth
And no rations to eat

Then when you can descend to the valley
The battalion has no more soldiers

A battalion of all the dead
We swear to save Italy

A battalion of all the dead
In Milan so many are shirking

These poor widows
They can no longer be consoled

With my leg still bandaged
It’s my turn to go back to the regiment

(“Ta Pum” means something like “Ka-Boom”. In WWI at one point the Austrians came over wasteland and occupied Mt. Ortigara. To them it was not worth much, but it overlooked three Italian cities, which could be hit by Austrian cannons. So the Italians deemed it vital to re-take the mountain. But there was only a narrow path up it. The Italians had more cannons but could not deploy them. It was a slaughter. Finally after 20 days the Italians took the mountain. The next day the Austrians took it back. After more (but less intense) fighting the Italians re-captured it. More likely, the Austrians just said, you can have the damn place if you want it so bad. Some Italian generals got sacked for allowing the massacre.

This song is about that battle. The soldier sings of twenty days on Ortigara without a relief. There is a cemetery across the bridge, for us soldiers. Someday soon I’ll be taking you there. Meanwhile, other guys are malingering back in Milan. Etc. Etc. (The soldiers had a lot of time to make up verses.) Grade: A.)

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Te L’ho Detto Tante Volte

La mia mamma la mi diceva
Stai attenta figlia mia
Stai attenta ai giovanotti
Ti potrebbero ingannar.          (or, ti potesti ingannar)

Ritornello:
Viva l’amor biondina, viva l’amor bionda         (or, daghela ben biondina, etc.)
Viva l’amor biondina, viva l’amor bionda

Te l’ho detto tante volte
Non guardari i marinai
Che se non ti pentirai            (who will not repent for you?)
Non ti sposerai mai più

Te l’ho detto tante volte
Lascia stare i bersaglieri
Sono sempre lusinghieri
Non ti sposerai mai più           (or, ti potesti lusingar)

Te l’ho detto tante volte
Non andar con gli aviatori
Che son tutti incantatori        (charmers)      (or, amatori)
Non ti sposerai mai più           (or, ti potesti innamorar)

Te l’ho detto tante volte
Lascia perdere l’alpino
Quello beve solo vino         (or, bere solamente vino)
Non ti sposerai mai più

La mamma mia mi diceva
Non fidarti mai dei mori
Sono tutto traditori
Non ti sposerai mai più

La mamma mia mi diceva
Non fidarti mai dei biondi         (or, non prendere dei biondi)
Che son tutti vagabondi
Non ti sposerai mai più

La mamma mia mi diceva
Non fidarti mai dei rossi
sono guai e sempre grossi         (or, saltafossi = jump around?)
Non ti sposerai mai più

La mamma mia mi diceva
Non prendere i castani
Che son tutti barbagiani         (stupid fellow, dolt)
Non ti sposerai mai più

(Mi resto celibe.)

Alternate versions:

La mia mamma che mi vuol bene
Mi diceva tutti giorni non guardar i giovanotti
Ti potesti rovinar

Rough translastion:

My mom told me
Be careful, my daughter
Be careful of young men,
They may deceive you (or, they can deceive you)

Refrain:
Long live love, little blond, long live love, blondie

I’ve told you many times
Don’t look at the sailors.
If you don’t repent
You will never marry

I’ve told you many times
Forget the sharpshooters
They always flatter
But will never marry you

I’ve told you many times
Don’t go out with aviators
They are all charmers
They’ll make you fall in love

I’ve told you many times
Forget about the alpine soldiers
They only drink wine
They’ll never marry you

My mother told me
Never trust dark-haired guys
They’re all traitors
They’ll never marry you

My mom told me
Don’t take up with blond guys
They’re all bums
They’ll never marry you

My mom told me
Never trust redheads
They are trouble and always gross
They’ll never marry you

My mother told me
Don’t take up with brown-haired guys
They are all dolts
You will never get married

(I’ll stay celibate.)

Alternate versions:

My mother, who loves me,
Told me every day, “Don’t look at the young men
You could be ruined.”

(“I Have Told You Many Times”. A mother warns her daughter to beware of men with blond hair, red hair, brown hair, soldiers, sailors, etc., humorously listing their bad points. In other words, all men are beasts. Grade: B+.)

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Testamento del Capitano, Il

(Capitan della Compagnia, Il)

Il capitan della compagnia (or, E il capitan)
Egli è ferito e sta per morir (or, e l’è ferito e stà per morir)
E manda a dire ai suoi alpini
Che lo rivengano a ritrovar (or, perchè lo vengano a rittrovar)

I suoi alpini gli mandan dire (or, … ghe manda a dire)
Che non han scarpe per camminar
“O con le scarpe, o senza scarpe
I miei alpini li voglio qua!”

“Cosa comanda sior Capitano
I suoi alpini eccoli qua!” (or, che noi adesso semo arrivà)
“Io comando che il mio corpo
in cinque pezzi sia taglià

Il primo pezzo alla mia patria
Che si ricordi del suo alpin,
Secondo pezzo al battaglione
che si ricordi del suo capitan.

Il terzo pezzo alla mia mamma
Che si ricordi del suo figlio alpin (or, del suo figliol)
Il quarto pezzo alla mia bella
Che si ricordi del suo primo amor

L’ultimo pezzo alle montagne
Che lo fioriscano di rose e fior!”
L’ultimo pezzo alle montagne
Che lo fioriscano di rose e fior!

Rough translation:

The captain of the company
Is injured and about to die
He sends word to his alpine soldiers
Who came to retrieve him

To his Alpini whom he commanded,
Who had no shoes to walk in, he said:
“With shoes or without shoes,
I want my Alpini here.”

“What is your command, captain?
Your Alpini are here.”
“I command that my body
Be cut into five pieces.

The first piece to my homeland,
To the memory of its Alpini.
The second piece to the battalion,
To the memory of its captain.

The third piece to my mother,
To the memory of her alpine son.
The fourth piece to my darling,
To the memory of her first love.

The last piece to the mountains,
So that they will bloom in roses and flowers!”
The last piece to the mountains,
So that they will bloom in roses and flowers!

(“The Testament of the Captain”. With his dying breath he gathers his Alpine soldiers and testifies to his love for his country, the battalion, his mother, his girl, and to the mountains. This is another of the songs that Eileen Menegus Debesis sang in her choral group during her time in San Vito di Cadore. Grade: B+.)

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Tradotta, La

As sung by L’allegra Compagnia

La tradotta che parte da Torino
A Milano non si ferma più
Ma la va diretta al Piave
Cimitero della gioventù

Siam partiti siam partiti in ventinove
Ora in sette siam tornati qua
E gli altri ventidue
Son si porti tutti a San Donà (or, son morti tutti)

Cara suora cara suora son ferito
A domani non ci arrivo più
Se non c’è qui la mia mamma
Un bel fiore me lo porti tu

A Nervesa a Nervesa c’è una croce
Mio fratello l’è si porto là (or, l’è disteso là)
Io ci ho scritto su “Ninetto”
Che la Mamma lo ritoverà
Io ci ho scritto su “Ninetto”
Che la Mamma lo ritoverà

Rough translation:

The troop train that leaves from Turin to Milan does not stop anymore but goes straight to the Piave, the cemetery of youth.

Twenty-nine of us set out but only five have returned here. The other twenty-two are all dead at San Donà.

Dear sister, I am injured, and there will be no more tomorrows for me. If Mother does not come here, bring me a beautiful flower.

At Nervesa there is a cross. That is where my brother fell. I have written “Ninetto” on it so that Mother can find it.

(“The Troop Train”. This song is about the battle of the Piave river in Treviso in June of 1918. San Donà (di Piave) and Nervesa (della Battaglia) are towns in the province of Treviso that were in the thick of the fighting. According to the account of the official French observer, Henri Kervarec (as recorded in Source Records of the Great War, Vol. VI, ed. Charles F. Horne, National Alumni, 1923, which can be found on the website firstworldwar.com), one of the Austro-Hungarian objectives in their attack was to put pressure on the Italians, to prevent them from sending troops to the French front. This did not work, at least to the extent that my grandfather (from that very area) and his unit were sent to France to fight. The battle was a decisive victory for the Italians (after some earlier defeats). This probably was the battle my grandmother used to talk about. She remembered giving water to and bandaging up wounded Austrians (actually, many were Hungarians), even though they were the enemy and her own husband was fighting against them, because they were suffering so horribly in their retreat. Grade: C+.)

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Tragico Naufragio Della Nave Sirio, Il

E da Genova il Sirio partiva
Per l’America al suo destin
E da bordo cantarsi sentivano
Tutti allegri varcare confin

Urto il Sirio un terribile scoglio
Di tanta gente la vi s’era fin
Padri e madri abbraciate a suoi figli            (or, abbraciavan i suoi figli)
Scomparivan fra le onde del mar           (or, e si sparivano fra)

E fra loro un vescovo c’era
Dando a tutti la benedizion.

Other verses:

Tutto ??endrio ******?? Cai
Son parento nel gran dolor

Rough draft:

The ship Sirius left from Genoa
Bound for America, to its destiny
And those on board felt like singing,
All of them happy to cross the border

The Sirius collided with a terrible reef
So that the lives of many people ended
Fathers and mothers embraced their children
Disappearing in the waves of the sea

And among them was a bishop
Giving to all his blessing

Other verses:
?????

(“The Tragic Shipwreck of the Sirius”. The ship hits a reef on its way to America from Genoa. Many passengers are lost “among the waves of the sea”, while a bishop on board gives a last benediction. Based on a true incident. Grade: B+.)

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Trenta Giorni de Nave a Vapore

Trenta giorni di nave a vapore
Che nell’America noi siamo arrivati
E nell’America noi siamo arrivati
Abbiam trovato né paglia e né fieno
Abbiam dormito sul piano terreno
E come le bestie abbiamo riposà
Abbiam dormito sul piano terreno
E come le bestie abbiamo riposà
E come le bestie abbiamo riposà

America allegra e bella
Tutti la chiamano l’America sorella
Tutti la chiamano l’America sorella
La la la la lalalalala
Lalalalala la la la la

Ci andaremo coi carri dei zingari
Ci andaremo coi carri dei zingari
Ci andaremo coi carri dei zingari
In America voglio andar

America allegra e bella
Tutti la chiamano l’America sorella
Tutti la chiamano l’America sorella
La la la la lalalalala
Lalalalala la la la la

E l’America l’è lunga e l’è larga
L’è circondata da monti e da piani
E con l’industria dei nostri italiani
Abbiam fondato paesi e città
E con l’industria dei nostri italiani
Abbiam fondato paesi e città

America allegra e bella
Tutti la chiamano l’America sorella
Tutti la chiamano l’America sorella
La la la la lalalalala
Lalalalala la la la la

Rough translation:

Thirty days by steamship
We’ve arrived in America
We’ve arrived in America
We have found neither straw nor hay
We’ve slept on level ground
And we’ve rested like the beasts
[repeat last lines]

America, happy and beautiful
Everyone calls it America our sister
Everyone calls it America our sister
La la la la lalalalala
Lalalalala la la la la

We’ll go by gypsy wagons
We’ll go by gypsy wagons
We’ll go by gypsy wagons
I want to go to America

America, happy and beautiful
Everyone calls it America our sister
Everyone calls it America our sister
La la la la lalalalala
Lalalalala la la la la

And America is long and wide
Surrounded by mountains and plains
And by the industry of us Italians
We’ve built towns and cities
And by the industry of us Italians
We’ve built towns and cities

America, happy and beautiful
Everyone calls it America our sister
Everyone calls it America our sister
La la la la lalalalala
Lalalalala la la la la

(“Thirty Days by Steamship”. Another of the many immigrant songs. These lyrics seem to be in standard Italian, so maybe this song should be in the Central Italy section, but I first heard it sung by a Piemontese group in an Alan Lomax collection. Grade: B.)

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Tre Sorelle, Le

       (C’ereno Tre Sorelle; Erano Tre Sorelle; Noi Siamo Tre Sorelle)

(Il Pescatore Dell’Onda seems closely related in words and theme. Note that there are many different versions of words and melodies for Tre Sorelle.)

First, here is a version by Corale Eco:

C’ereno tre sorelle, ahò.         (repeat each line; same pattern throughout)
E tutt’e tre d’amor
Giulietta la più bella             (or Ninetta, etc.)
Si mise a navigar

Nel navigare un giorno, ahò
L’anel gli cadde in mar
Volgendo gli occhi all’onde
La vidde un pescator.

O pescator dell’onde, ahò
Vieni a pescar più in qua
Ripescami l’anello
Che mm’e caduto in mar.

E se te lo ripesco, ahò
Cosa mi darai tu?
Ti dò trecento scudi
E la borsa ricamà

Non vo’ trecento scudi, ahò
Né borsa ricamà
Solo un bacin d’amore
Se melo vuoi donar.

Here is a version sung by Lino Straulino. It is from an album of his Friulian songs, but this seems to be all or mostly standard Italian:

La c’eran tre sorelle
Pianta di rosa e ramo d’amor
Le c’eran tre sorelle
E tutt’e tre d’amor

Marietta la più bella
Pianta di rosa e ramo d’amor
Marietta la più bella
Si mise a navigar

(Same pattern below)

E navigan do ‘l mare
L’anello le cascò

Oi, pescator del mare
Venite qui a pescar

Pescate il mio anello
Che me ha cascà en el mar

Se aiuto lo ripesco
Cosa mi ??vu stu dar??

Ti dono cento scudi
E una borsa ricamà

Non voglio cento scudi
Né borsa ricamà

Un sol’ bacin d’amore
E quello che basterà

Cosa diran le gente?
Vedendo ci a baciar

Ci bacerem di notte
Quando nessuno vedrà

Vedrà soltanto la luna
Ma quella la spia non far

Vedranno soltanto le stelle
Ma quelle non sanno parlar

(This next version is from Lazio, as sung by Grupo Sperimentale di Canto Populare):

C’erano tre sorelle
Pianta de rosa e ramo de fior
C’erano tre sorelle
E tutt’e tre d’amor

La Giulia è la più bella
Pianta de rosa e ramo de fior
La Giulia è la più bella
E se mise a navigar

(Same pattern below)

Lo navigà che fece
E l’anello le cascò         (“le” sounds like “elie”)

Guardando verso l’onda
Lo vidde un pescator

O pescator dell’onda
L’anello vieni a pescar

Se io te lo ritrovo
Che cosa a mi vuoi donar?

Ti dono cento scudi
E una borsa ricamà

Non voglio né cento scudi
E né borsa ricamà

Solo un bacin d’amore
Se tu melo vuoi dar

Ci vederà la luna
E la luna la spia non far

Ci vederà quel Dio
E al inferno ci manderà

Al inferno mangeremo
Beveremo e faremo l’amor

Rough translation:

There were three sisters, oh, (repeat each line; same pattern throughout)
And all three were in love
Juliet, the most beautiful,
Set out sailing

When sailing one day, oh,
Her ring fell into the sea
Turning her eyes to the waves
She saw a fisherman

Oh fisherman of the waves, oh,
Come fish over here
Fish up my ring
That I dropped into the sea

And if I fish it up for you, oh,
What will you give me?
I’ll give you three hundred coins
And an embroidered purse

I don’t want three hundred coins, oh,
Or an embroidered purse
Only a little kiss of love,
If you want to give it to me

The Lino Straulino version:

There were three sisters,
Rose plant and branch of love,
There were three sisters
And all of them were in love

Marietta, the most beautiful,
Rose plant and branch of love,
Marietta, the most beautiful,
Began to sail

(Same pattern below)

And while sailing on the sea
She dropped her ring

Oh fisherman of the sea
Come here to fish

Fish up my ring
That I have dropped into the sea

If I help you fish it up
What would you give me?

I’ll give you a hundred coins
And an embroidered purse

I don’t want a hundred coins
Or an embroidered purse

Just a little kiss of love
And that will be enough

What will the people say,
Seeing us kiss?

We’ll kiss at night
When no one will see

Only the moon will see,
But it does not tattle

Only the stars will see,
But they don’t know how to speak

Next, the Grupo Sperimentale di Canto Populare version:

There were three sisters,
Rose plant and flower branch.
There were three sisters
And all three were in love

Julia was the most beautiful,
Rose plant and flower branch,
Julia was the most beautiful
And she began to sail

(Same pattern below)

Her sailing caused her
To drop her ring

Looking over the sea
She saw a fisherman

Oh fisherman of the wave
Come here to fish up my ring

If I find it for you
What would you want to give me?

I’ll give you a hundred coins
And an embroidered purse

I want neither a hundres coins
Nor an embroidered purse

Only a little kiss of love
If you want to give it to me

The moon will see us
And the moon doesn’t tattle

God will see us
And he’ll send us to hell

In hell we will eat,
Drink and make love

(“The Three Sisters”. This has a theme I’ve come across in several ballads and seems very common (see O Pescatore del Onda and La Linda La Va al Fosso, above). A girl drops her ring in the sea and calls over a fisherman to find it. He says, what will you give me if I retrieve it? She says, some coins and an embroidered purse (!?). He says, I don’t want that, I just want a kiss from you. In some versions she says (but clearly just flirting with him), “How dare you! I’ll tell my father and he will put you in prison. If you want my love, you have to talk to daddy.” In the version here that I like best (the one by Lino Straulino), she just says, “What will folks say if they see us kissing?” The boy says, “We’ll do it at night when no one is watching. Just the moon, which does not tattle, and the stars, which cannot talk.” Grade: A)

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Tu Sei La Stella Di Noi Soldà

        (E Le Stellete; Piave; Bandiera Rossa)

E le stellete che noi portiamo son disciplina, son disciplina (or portastecchini=toothpicks)
E le stellete che noi portiamo son disciplina di noi soldà

Chorus:
E tu biondina capricciosa garibaldina tru la la
Tu sei la stella, tu sei la stella
E tu biondina capricciosa garibaldina tru la la
Tu sei la stella di noi soldà

E la gavetta che noi portiamo è la cucina, è la cucina            (mess-tin)
E la gavetta che noi portiamo è la cucina di noi soldà           (or, il lavandino, a sink)

Same pattern as above:

E la borraccia che noi portiamo è la cantina è la cantina          (flask)

E le scarpette che noi portiamo son le barchette

Ed il cappello che noi portiamo si è l’ombrello

E le giberne che noi portiamo son portachicche          (cartridge pouch; tobacco pouch)

E questo zaino che noi portiamo l’è la dispensa           (backpack; mobile sideboard)

Rough translation:

And the daggers that we carry are the toothpicks, are the toothpicks
And the daggers that we carry are the toothpicks of us soldiers

Chorus:
And you capricious little blond follower of Garibaldi tru la la
You are the star, you are the star
And you capricious little blond follower of Garibaldi tru la la
You are the star of us soldiers

And the mess-tin that we carry is the kitchen, is the kitchen
And the mess-tin that we carry is the kitchen of us soldiers

Same pattern as above:

And the canteen that we carry is the wine cellar of us soldiers

And the shoes that we wear are the boats of us soldiers

And the hat that we wear is the umbrella of us soldiers

And the cartridge pouches that we carry are the tobacco pouches of us soldiers

And this backpack that we carry is the pantry of us soldiers

(“You Are the Star of Us Soldiers”. A march. The chorus is about a blonde, capricious “garibaldina” (follower of Garibaldi), so this song must go back to the wars for the unification of Italy, from the 1840s through the 1860s. The main verses do not allude to this girl at all. They humorously comment on the everyday equipment of the soldiers. Their canteens serve as their wine cellars, their stilletos as their toothpicks, and so on. This same tune was set to words about defending the Piave River against the Austrians in WWI, and also, as Bandiera Rossa (Red Flag), was (is?) the anthem of the Italian Communist Party. Grade: A-.)

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Meat

Cassola (cassoeula)

This was another specialty of our house, from the Lombard side of the family. I make it sometimes, but never as good as my mother did.

Savoy cabbage is available in supermarkets for most of the year nowadays, but our family tradition is that the savoy cabbage is best after the first frost of fall.

Apparently, the real Italian recipes call for using pig’s foot, pork sausage, pork rind, and even ears and tails, but we just use (pork) spare ribs.

Ingredients:

A few tbs. olive oil, just enough to start the browning process
1 small onion, diced
6 lbs. pork ribs
5 lbs. savoy cabbage, cut up
3 carrots, sliced
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Brown the spare ribs, onions and carrots in a large pot. When browned, remove the ribs and “drain” them on paper towels to get rid of some of the fat, if you wish. Put them back in the pot and add the cabbage, a bit of a time if there is too much cabbage for the pot. Cook until the meat starts to come off the bone. Cook with cover on unless there is too much liquid in the bottom of the pot. If that happens, uncover the pot to boil some liquid off, or you can remove some of the liquid with a spoon. If you wish to remove some of the fat, you can skim that off, too.

Tips: Some people add 1-2 tbsp. of vinegar in the last 15 min. of cooking. (I have never done that.)

You can add celery (1-2 stalks, diced) and some diced tomatoes if desired.

Serve with polenta, with bread, or just “as is”.

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Northern Songs “V”

Va L’Alpin

Va l’Alpin su l’alte cime           (summits, peaks)
Passa a volo lo sciator           (the skier passes rapidly, flying)
Dorme sempre sulle cime
Sogna mamma e casolar        (cottage; or, sogna alpe e casolar)

Fra le rocce e fra i burroni         (ravines, gorges)
Sempre lesto è suo cammin         (swift, agile)
Quando passar la montagna
Pensa sempre al suo destin.

Pensa, Alpin, al tuo destino
C’è il ghiacciaio da passar         (glacier)
Mentre vai col cuor tranquilo
La valanga può cascar         (avalanche; tumble down)

Pensa, Alpin, la tuo casetta
Chè la riverdrai ancor
E pensa all tuo bimba        (or, c’è una bimba che t’aspetta)
Orgogliosa del tuo amor        (proud, elated)

Rough translation:

The alpine soldier goes on the highest peaks
The skier goes flying by
He always sleeps on the summit
Dreaming of mother and the farmhouse

Among the rocks and among the ravines
He is always quick in step
When passing the mountain
He always thinks of his fate

Think, Alpino, of your fate
There is the glacier to pass
While you go with a tranquil heart
An avalanche may tumble down

Think, Alpino, of your cottage
That you will see again
And think of your child
Who is proud of your love

(“The Alpine Soldier Travels”. The life of an Alpino up in the mountains. The melody is based on a Russian folksong about the cossack Stenka Razin. Grade: C.)

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Valdôtaine, La

(Valdostana, La)

A nineteenth century song from Aosta Valley (Valle d’Aosta) in extreme northwest Italy, bordering France and Switzerland. The natives are said to speak French, Italian and their own tongue, Valdôtain, a dialect of Arpitan. The version I heard, sung by a mixed choral group on an Alan Lomax record, seems to be in standard French (although maybe with a local accent). The Italian translation is by Gian Mario Navillod, according to the website Tapazovaldoten.

In French:

J’ai cru trouver loin de la Doire,
Un séjour plus cher à mon coeur.
Plein d’une espérance illusoire
Ailleurs j’ai cherché le bonheur.
Mais quand j’ai connu ma folie
Sentant mon coeur brûlant d’amour
J’ai voulu revoir ma patrie
Et ceux qui m’ont donné le jour.
[repeat last four lines; same pattern below]

J’ai voulu, comme l’hirondelle,
Chercher un ciel, au doux zéphir.
Mais quand la maison paternelle
Vint s’offrir à mon souvenir,
Je me suis dit, l’âme attendrie,
Renonce à ce pays lointain.
Je veux vivre dans ma patrie
Et je veux mourir dans son sein.

J’ai trouvé des plaines fertiles,
Des collines et des vallons,
Des prés riants, des lacs tranquilles,
Et des champs couverts de moissons.
J’ai vu le ciel de l’Italie,
Du ciel Français j’ai vu l’azur,
Mais le beau ciel de ma patrie
Est, a mes yeux, cent fois plus pur.

J’ai bu dans la coupe étrangère
Des vins vieux et des vins nouveaux.
On a souvent rempli mon verre
Et du Champagne et du Bordeaux.
Ces vins, dit-on, n’ont point de lie
C’est une bien douce liqueur
Mais le nectar de ma patrie
Renferme encor plus de douceur.

Loin de mes montagnes si belles,
J’ai coulé bien de jours sereins.
J’ai trouvé des amis fidèles
Loin des bras de mes Valdôtains.
Mais les amis de ma patrie
Sont les plus fidèles amis,
Et les plus beaux jours de ma vie,
Je les coule dans mon pays.

Loin des regards de votre mère
Cherchez un bonheur idéal.
Partez pour la terre étrangère
Ennemis du pays natal.
Quand à moi, c’est à ma patrie
Que je réserve mes amours,
Toujours, toujours je l’ai chérie
Et je la chérirai toujours.

Tout est brillant dans la nature,
Le Ciel nous sourit en tous lieux,
Partout l’onde a son doux murmure
Et l’oiseau ses concerts joyeux.
Partout la fleur dans la prairie
Frappe nos regards enchantés,
Mais les beautés da la patrie
Surpassent toutes les beautés.

Le sol qui m’a donné naissance
Est le sol le plus fortuné.
Je préfère à toute la France
Le beau pays où je suis né.
Blâmant l’homme qui s’expatrie
Je dis et je dirai toujours:
Vive Aoste, ma chère patrie,
Vive le berceau de mes jours!

In Italian:

Ho creduto di trovare lontano dalla Dora
Un posto più caro al mio cuore
Pieno di una illusoria speranza
Ho cercato altrove la felicità
Ma quando ho riconosciuto la mia follia
Sentendo bruciare d’amore il mio cuore
Ho voluto rivedere la mia patria
E chi mi ha messo al mondo
[repeat the last lines; same pattern below]

Ho voluto come la rondine
Cercare un cielo dal dolce zefiro
Ma quando la casa paterna
Mi si presentò nel ricordo
Mi sono detto l’anima intenerita
Rinuncia a questo paese lontano
Voglio vivere nella mia patria
E voglio morire nel suo seno

Ho travato delle fertili pianure
Delle colline e dei valloni
Dei ridenti prati dei laghi tranquilli
E dei campi coperti di messi
Ho visto il cielo dell’Italia
Del cielo francese ho visto l’azzurro
Ma il bel cielo della mia patria
È ai miei occhi cento volte più puro

Ho bevuto nella coppa straniera
Dei vini dolci e dei vini nuovi
Si è sovente riempito il mio bicchiere
Di Champagne de di Bordeaux
Questi vini si dice non hanno feccia (fondo)
Sono una dolce bevanda
Ma il nettare della mia patria
Racchiude ancora più dolcezza

Lontano dalle mie montagne così belle
Ho trascorso numerosi giorni sereni
Ho trovato amici fedeli
Lontano dalle braccia dei miei valdostani
Ma gli amici della mia patria
Sono i più fedeli amici
E i più bei giorni della mia vita
Li trascorro nel mio paese

Lontano dagli sguardi di vostra madre
Cercato una felicità ideale
Partite per la terra straniera
Nemici del paese natale
Per quanto mi riguarda è alla mia patria
Che dedico il mio amore
Sempre sempre l’ho cara
E l’avrò cara per sempre

Tutto è scintillante nella natura
Il cielo ci sorride in ogni dove
Dappertutto l’onda ha un dolce mormorio
E l’uccello canta gioioso
Dappertutto i fiori del pascolo
Colpiscono il nostro sguardo incantato
Ma le bellezze della patria
Sovrastano tutte le bellezze

Il suolo che mi ha fatto nascere
È il suolo più fortunato
Preferisco a tutta la Francia
Il bel paese dove sono nato
Biasimando l’uomo che espatria
Dico e dirò sempre
Viva Aosta la mia cara patria
Viva la culla dei miei giorni.

Rough translation:

I thought I found far from the Dora
A place more dear to my heart.
Full of an illusory hope,
I sought happiness elsewhere.
But when I realized my folly,
Feeling my heart burning with love,
I wanted to see my homeland again
And those who brought me into the world.

I wanted, like the swallow,
To look for a sky with a gentle breeze.
But when my family home
Came to my memory,
I said to my soul, tenderly,
Renounce this distant country.
I want to live in my homeland
And I want to die in her bosom.

I found fertile plains,
Hills and valleys,
Laughing meadows and tranquil lakes
And fields full of crops.
I have seen the sky of Italy,
I’ve seen the azure of the French sky,
But the beautiful sky of my country
Is, in my eyes, a hundred times more pure.

I have drunk in a foreign cup
Old wines and new wines;
I have often filled my glass
With Champagne and Bordeaux.
These wines, it is said, have no dregs;
They are very sweet liqueurs.
But the nectar of my homeland
Contains even more sweetness.

Far from my beautiful mountains
I spent many peaceful days.
I found good friends
Far from the arms of my Valdostans.
But the friends of my homeland
Are the most loyal friends
And the best days of my life
I spend in my country.

Out of sight of your mother
You look for an ideal happiness,
Traveling to the foreign land,
Enemies of the native land.
As for me, it is to my country
That I reserve my love.
Always, always I cherish her
And I will cherish her forever.

Everything is brilliant in nature,
Heaven smiles at us everywhere,
Everywhere the wave has its soft murmur
And the bird its joyful concerts.
Everywhere the flowers in the meadow
Impress our enchanted looks,
But the beauty of the homeland
Surpasses all the beauties.

The soil that gave birth to me
Is the most fortunate soil.
I prefer more than all of France
The beautiful country where I was born.
Censuring the expatriate,
I say and I’ll always say,
“Long live Aosta my dear homeland,
Long live the cradle of my days!”

(“The Aosta Valley”, composed and written by Léon-Clément Gérard (1810 – 1876), a priest born in the town of Cogne in Valle d’Aosta. This song has been called the national poem of the Valle d’Aosta. It should not be confused with another work, the “Montagnes Valdôtaine”, that is the official anthem of the Autonomous Region of the Valle d’Aosta. The word “Aosta” derives from “Augusta Praetoria Salassorum”. The Salassi were the locals conquered by the Romans around 25 BC. So Valle d’Aosta literally means the “Valley of Augustus”. Grade: B.)

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Vicino alla Marina

Vicino alla marina dove c’è un bello stare tru la la            [place?]
//repeat each line//
Si vede i bastimenti a gallegiar sul mar           [floating]

A gallegiar sul mare ci vuole le barchette tru la la
A far l’amor di sera ci vuol le ragazette        

Le ragazette giovane e l’amor non lo san fare tru la la
Noi ‘altri giovanotti gliela faremo fare

Rough translation:

Close to the marina, where there is a nice place tru la la
//repeat each line//
You can see the ships floating on the sea

You need boats to float on the sea tru la la
You need girls to make love in the evening

The young girls don’t know how to make love tru la la
We other young folks will show them how

(“Near the Seacoast”. There is a beautiful spot to watch the ships. The young girls don’t know how to make love, but we boys can teach them how. Grade: B-.)

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Vieni Sulla Barchetta

(lyrics found on http://boulegadis.d-maps.com)

Vieni sulla barchetta, vien’ morettina, vien’
Guarda che bianca luna, guarda che ciel seren   X2

Vien’ sulla barchetta, vien’ morettina, vien’
Sei la mia speranza, non far mi più penar   X2

Vien’ sulla barchetta, vien’ morettina, vien’
Vieni sulla barchetta, vieni con me a remar   X2        (remare = to row)

(Then, with same pattern as above:)

Sei la mia bellina, vien’ morettina crudel    X2
Soridono le stelle, ma piange – il tuo fidel    X2

Rough translation:

Come onto the boat, come, little brunette, come
Look at the white moon, look at the serene sky X2

Come onto the boat, come, little brunette, come
You are my hope. Don’t make me suffer any more X”

Come onto the boat, come, little brunette, come
Come onto the boat, come row with me X2

(Then, with same pattern as above:)

You are my beauty. Come, cruel little brunette X2
The stars smile, but he cries – – your faithful X2

(“Come Onto the Boat”. A sweet tune, even sappy, but one that you’d want the gondolier to sing while he rows you through the canals. Grade: B.)

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Vinassa, Vinassa

(E Sul Cervino)

(Originally from Trieste? Vinassa means grape pomace.)

Là nella valle c’è un’osteria         (or, E in fondo valle)
L’è l’allegria, l’è l’allegria
Là nella valle c’è un’osteria
L’è l’allegria di noi Alpin

Chorus:
E se son pallida dei miei colori           (or, nei miei colori)
Non voglio dottori, non voglio dottori
E se son pallida come una strassa
Vinassa, vinassa e fiaschi de vin.

Là su pei monti c’è un punto nero         (or, Là sopra i monti c’è un buco nero))
È un cimitero, è un cimitero
Là su pei monti c’è un punto nero
È un cimitero di noi Alpin.

(Chorus)

Là in mezzo al mare c’è una biondina
L’è la rovina, l’è la rovina
Là in mezzo al mare c’è una biondina
L’è la rovina di noi Alpin.

(Chorus)

La nella valle c’è una ragazza
Che la va pazza per noi Alpin.

La nella valle c’è una caserma           (barracks)
Requiem eterna per chi la sta

(Other verses – from http://www.gruppoalpinoprato.it)
(Same pattern as above)

E sul Cervino c’è una slavina (the Matterhorn)
L’è la rovina di noi Alpin.

Sul Monte Rosa c’è una colonna
L’è la Madonna di noi Alpin.

E in fondo valle c’è una osteria
L’è l’allegria di noi Alpin.

Là nelle valle c’è la Rosina
L’è la rovina di noi Alpin.

Rough translation:

There in the valley there is a tavern
It is the joy, it is the joy
There in the valley there is a tavern
It is the joy of us Alpine soldiers

Chorus:
And if I am pale in my colors
I don’t want doctors, I don’t want doctors
And if I am as pale as a rag
Grape pomace and flasks of wine

There on the mountains, there is a black spot (or, a black hole)
It is a cemetery, it is a cemetery
There on the mountains, there is a black spot
It is a cemetery of us Alpine soldiers

(Chorus)

There in the middle of the sea, there is a blond girl
She is the ruin, she is the ruin
There in the middle of the sea, there is a blond girl
She is the ruin of us Alpine soldiers

(Chorus)

There in the valley, there is a girl
She goes crazy for us Alpine soldiers

There in the valley, there is a barracks
Eternal rest for those who are there

(Other verses – from http://www.gruppoalpinoprato.it)
(Same pattern as above)

And on the Matterhorn there is an avalanche
It is the ruin of us Alpine soldiers

On Monte Rosa there is a pillar
It is the Madonna of us Alpine soldiers

And at the bottom of the valley there is an inn
It is the joy of us Alpine soldiers

There in the valley, there is Rosina
She is the ruin of us Alpine soldiers

(“Grape Pomace” [which is used for making grappa]. A solders’ song. This is about the taverns that are the delight of the Alpine soldiers and the girls that are their ruin. Chorus: When I get sick, I don’t want doctors. Bring me a flask of wine. Grade: B.)

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Vin ‘l è Bon, El

(Venetian; in standard Italian: Il Vino è buono)

El vin l’è bon, l’è bel bicer, xe mejo na serva che un cavalier

Pomidori ‘n tel orto intorceva la foja
Le tose sul leto e moria de la grata

Chorus:
El vin l’è bon, l’è bel bicer, xe mejo na serva che un cavalier
El vin l’è bon, l’è bel bicer, xe mejo na serva che un cavalier

Pupà zo in staea forniva el mul
I tosi in campagna con un deo ‘n tel naso

(Chorus)

La nona ‘n tel quarto misieva i pajoni
El nono contento el grateva i sinoci

(Chorus)

Pupà in cantina neva la britola
Le tose sul leto e grateva le rece

(Chorus)

La nona cativa rampeva sul mur
Par quel che el nono . . . parampampampam

(Chorus)

Rough translation:

The wine is good, the glass is beautiful
A serving girl is better than a knight

The leaves on the tomatoes in the garden twist and twine
?? The girls in bed die from the grating ??

Chorus:
The wine is good, the glass is beautiful
A serving girl is better than a knight
The wine is good, the glass is beautiful
A serving girl is better than a knight

?? Dad in the stable supplied the mule
The kids in the countryside with a finger in their noses ??

(Chorus)

?? Grandma in her bedroom on a straw mattress
Grandpa is content grating the ??????

(Chorus)

?? Dad in the wine cellar with a knife
The girls in bed are grating the nets ??

(Chorus)

The mean grandma is climbing the wall
Because the grandpa . . . parampampampam

(Chorus)

(“The Wine is Good”. A Venetian drinking song. One version can be seen on the Youtube post of “sonapipian”. Grade: B.)

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Violetta, La

È la Violetta, la va la va (la va la va, la va la va)
La va sul campo e la s’era insugnada
Che gh’era ‘l so gingin che la rimirava         (for each verse, repeat the last two lines)

Perchè mi rimiri, gingin d’amor, gingin d’amor gingin d’amor?
Io ti rimiro perchè tu sei bella,
Dimmi se vuoi venire con me alla guerra

No, no alla guerra, non vo’ venir, non vo’ venir, non vo’ venir
Non vo’ venire con te alla guerra
Perchè si mangia male e si dorme per terra

No, no, no per terra, non dormirai, non dormirai, non dormirai.
Tu dormirai sopra un letto di fiori
E quattro begli Alpin ti faranno gli onori

Rough translation;

There is Violet; she goes, she goes
She goes on the field and was so dreamy
She drove him so lovesick that he gazed at her (repeat the last two lines)

(Same patttern below)

Why are you staring at me, loopy in love?
I’m staring at you because you are beautiful
Tell me if you want to come with me to the war

No, I don’t want to go to the war
I don’t want to go with you to the war
Because you eat badly and sleep on the ground

No, no, you won’t sleep on the ground
You’ll sleep on a bed of flowers
And four handsome Alpine soldiers will do you the honors

(“Violet” [as in a woman’s name]. When she walks across the field, the soldier can’t help but gaze at her. He invites her to come off to the war with him, but Violetta declines, because the food is bad and you have to sleep on the ground. He says, no, she will sleep on a bed of flowers, and four handsome Alpine soldiers will “do her the honors”. I wonder if this is a metaphor for all soldiers, not just this girl. A bed of flowers with four soldiers standing guard – – could this be a military funeral?

In any case, this song also was a standard at northern Italian gatherings in New Jersey, with each “la va la va” song by a different part of the group. Grade: A.)

#################################

Veal Scallopine

Ingredients:

Thin slices of veal
Some flour
Olive oil to coat the fry pan (a few tbsp. or so)
2 tbs. butter
¼ cup white wine (more as needed)
A few capers

Directions:

Flour thin slices of veal, fry in the oil on both sides, for 2-3 minutes. Then set the meat aside in a dish. Add the white wine to the oil in the pan. Then add a few capers and the butter. Heat this mixture thoroughly and serve it over the veal.

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