Wednesday, September 3, 2014

"Mein Herz ist im Hochland" - New Musical Settings By German Composers 1836-1842 (Burns in Germany)

Among the most popular songs in Germany during the second half of the 19th century and the early 20th century was "Mein Herz ist im Hochland". This was an adaptation of Robert Burns' "My Heart's In The Highlands" with - numerous - different melodies. For some reason it was never published here with the original tune (see Scots Musical Museum, Vol. 3, 1790, No. 259, p. 268, available at the Internet Archive).

But we must distinguish here between two lines of tradition. On one hand the song was offered as a "Volkslied", usually with Ferdinand Freiligrath's translation. Friedrich Silcher was the first to publish it in a collection of "Folksongs" in 1837. Others like Ludwig Erk would follow his lead (see my texts about Silcher's and Erk's versions in this blog). All in all at least six different tunes - some old, some new - were used for this song and it appeared in numerous collections. 

On the other hand a great number of German composers took one of the available translations - most popular were those by Freiligrath, Philipp Kaufmann or Wilhelm Gerhard (see The Earliest German Translations…, in this blog) - and wrote a new tune. I have counted more than 60 of these publications between 1836 and 1899. At the moment I am trying to put together a bibliography of these works. Here is the first part with all the new settings published between 1836 and 1842. This information is extracted from Hofmeister XIX, a database of Hofmeisters Monatsberichte which is invaluable for research into 19th century German music and Ernst Fleischhack's Freiligrath's Gedichte in Lied und Ton (Bielefeld 1990, here pp. 68-73). 
  • Friedrich W. Jähns, Schottische Lieder und Gesänge, mit Begleitung des Piano-Forte. Gedichtet von Robert Burns, übersetzt von Philipp Kaufmann, Op. 21, Heft II. 4 Gesänge für Bass, Bariton od. Alt, Berlin, Crantz [1836], No. 1, pp. 2/3 (at BStB-DS; see Hofmeister, Nov. 1836,p. 125)
  • Carl Wilhelm Greulich, Jäger-Lied für Tenor mit Begleitung des Piano-Forte und Horn ad lib. (Mein Herz ist im Hochland), Letzte Arbeit des Komponisten, Berlin, Westphal [1837] (see Hofmeister, August 1837, p. 106, no extant copy)
  • Wenzel J. Tomaschek, Drei Gesänge, componiert für eine Singstimme mit Pianoforte-Begleitung, Op. 92, Hamburg, Cranz [1839], No. 3: "Mein Herz ist im Hochland" (see Hofmeister Oktober & November 1839, p. 142; copies at ÖNB, Wien, MS16405-4°; SMI, Regensburg, xxx)
  • Heinrich Marschner, Lieder nach Robert Burns von F. Freiligrath für eine Sopran oder Tenorstimme mit Begleitung des Piano-Forte, Op. 103, Mainz, Schott [1839], No. 6, pp. 12-13 (online available at the Internet Archive; also at IMSLP, see Hofmeister, Dezember 1839, p. 154)
  • Friedrich Kücken, Drei Duette für Gesang mit Begleitung des Pianoforte, Op. 30, Berlin, Bechthold [1840], No. 2: "Mein Herz ist im Hochland" (see Hofmeister August 1840, p. 107 ; also in later edition: Sechs Berühmte Duette für zwei Singstimmen. Opus 15 und 30, Leipzig, Peters [1894], No. 5, pp. 23-30, pdf [bound together with Sechs Berühmte Duette für zwei Singstimmen. Opus 8 und 21, Leipzig, Peters, n. d.])

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  • Robert Schumann, Myrthen. Liederkreis von Göthe, Rücker, Byron, Moore, Heine, Burns und Mosen, Op. 25, Leipzig, Kistner [1840], Heft 3, No. 1: "Hochländers Abschied" (see Hofmeister, Oktober 1840, p. 143; see a later edition, No. XIII, pp. 30-2, at the Internet Archive; more later editions of this collection are available at IMSLP
  • Carl Krebs, Mein Herz ist im Hochland. Lied für eine Singstimme mit obligater Pianoforte-Begleitung, Op. 73, Für Sopran od. Tenor, 1/3 Thlr., Schuberth & Comp, Hamburg u. Leipzig, T. Trautwein, Berlin, T. Haslinger, Wien, n. d. [1840] (pdf; see Hofmeister, Dezember 1840, p. 172, see also this text in my blog)
  • Otto Bähr, 6 Lieder für Mezzo-Sopran, Alt oder Bariton mit Begleitung des Pianoforte, Leipzig, Breitkopf & Härtel [1841], No. 5: "Mein Herz ist im Hochland" (see Hofmeister, November 1841, p. 172)
  • Julius Stern, Zwei Gesänge, No. 2: "Mein Herz ist im Hochland", in: Sammlung von Musik-Stücken aus alter und neuer Zeit als Zulage zur neuen Zeitschrift für Musik, 13. Heft, Juni 1841, pp.10-11, available at Hathi Trust (also in Julius Stern, 6 Gedichte von Reinick, Eichendorff, Burns, Chamisso, für eine Singstimme mit Begleitung des Pianoforte, Op. 8, Magdeburg, Heinrichshofen [1841], No. 4: "Mein Herz ist im Hochland" (one extant copy in the library of Schumann-Haus, Zwickau, $Zwi17#4625,2-A4/D1 )

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  • Leopold Lenz, Mein Herz ist im Hochland, nach dem Schottischen des Robert Burns, in: Musikbeilage zu August Lewald (ed.), Europa. Chronik der gebildeten Welt, 1841, 26 (see Catalog BStB München, 4 1796-1841, 26), also in: Leopold Lenz, 7 Lieder für 1 Singstimme mit Begleitung des Pianoforte, op. 29, Leipzig, Breitkopf & Härtel [1843], No. 3 (see Hofmeister, Februar 1843, p. 29, one extant copy at BStB, München, 2 10766
  • Henry Hugh Pearson, 6 Lieder von Robert Burns nach Freiligrath für eine Singstimme mit Begleitung des Pianoforte, Op. 7, Leipzig, Kistner [1842], No. 3: "Mein Herz ist im Hochland" (see Hofmeister, Juni 1842, p. 97 , one extant copy at Badische Landesbibliothek, Karlsruhe, DonMusDr 2260)
  • W. E. Scholz, 4 Lieder, Op. 30, 7tes Liederheft, Breslau, Cranz [1842], No. 4: "Des Schotten Abschied" (see Hofmeister, Juni 1842, p. 97; no extant copy?)
  • Alexander Fesca, Drei Lieder von Robert Burns in Musik gesetzt für eine sopran- oder Tenorstimme mit Begleitung des Pianoforte, op. 21, Braunschweig, Meyer [1842], No. 1: "Mein Herz ist im Hochland" (see Hofmeister, September 1842, p. 144 , one extant copy at Badische Landesbibliothek, Karlsruhe, DonMusDr 1035)
  • J. Sommer, 6 Gesänge für 4 Männerstimmen, Op. 3, Coblenz, Geswein [1842] (see Hofmeister, Oktober 1842, p. 160; no extant copy?)
This list shows nicely how the interest in Burns' songs grew at that time. The first one was Friedrich Wilhelm Jähns in 1836. He used Philipp Kaufmann's translation which was already available at that time even though his complete book would only be published in 1839. One more - Greulich - followed in 1837 but the great flood only started in 1839/40 with five new publications and then seven more in 1841/2. Interestingly some were dedicated exclusively to Burns' songs, like Jähns, Marschner, Pearson and Fesca. This demonstrates his newfound popularity in Germany. One should also take into account that there were some more collections of Burns' translated texts set to new music that didn't include this particular song (like Kufferath's 6 Lieder, 1841, see this text in this blog). 

"Mein Herz ist im Hochland" remained popular among composers for the rest of the century. Until 1849 there were at least 15 more relevant publications, among them works by Ferdinand Hiller, Niels Gade. Between 1850 and 1899 at least 33 new settings would follow. In fact for more 60 years this song never went out of fashion. 

  • Ernst Fleischhack, Freiligraths Gedichte in Lied und Ton, Bielefeld 1990
  • Hofmeister XIX = Musikalisch-literarischer Monatsbericht neuer Musikalien, musikalischer Schriften und Abbildungen, Hofmeister, Leipzig 1829ff (online available at Österreichische Nationalbibliothek; searchable database: Hofmeister XIX (Royal Holloway, University Of London)
  • The code for the midi-player used here is c/o: The problem with midi - Note for webmasters ( Many thanks!

Monday, September 1, 2014

Old German Songbooks, No. 15: Gustav Damm & Robert Schwalm (published between 1880-1900)

Here are some songbooks I have recently found in antiquarian bookshops. They were all published between 1880 and 1900 and collections like these - for students respectively schools - with what was the standard repertoire at that time were quite common. I always get the impression that every editor was recycling the same songs over and over again and in the end everybody must have known them by heart.
  • Gustav Damm (i. e. Theodor Steingräber), Kommersliederbuch. 132 Vaterlands-, Studenten-, Volks- und humoristische Lieder mit beigefügten Melodien. Neue Auflage, Leipzig, Steingräber, n. d. [first edition 1895, see Hofmeister XIX, Januar 1895, p. 15] (= Edition Steingräber Nr. 48)
    Download pdf (35,3 MB)
  • Gustav Damm (i. e. Theodor Steingräber), Liederbuch für Schulen. 168 ein-, zwei- und mehrstimmige Lieder. 11. Stereotypausgabe in neuer Orthographie, Hannover, Steingräber, n. d. [early 1880s; Hofmeister XIX: 8th ed., May 1879, p. 156; 17. ed., March 1889, p. 117]
    pdf (55 MB)
Gustav Damm was a pseudonym of Theodor Steingräber (1830-1904). He had written an instruction book for piano - first published in 1868 - that became immensely popular and was reprinted regularly. In the late 70s he started a music publishing house (information from Edition Steingräber - History). Even though music for the piano made up the greatest part of his program he also tried out other genres. His Kommersliederbuch is quite similar to Max Friedländer's Commersbuch that had been published some years earlier (see Old Songbooks, No. 11, in this blog). Songbooks for students were always in good demand but apparently Damm's attempt was apparently not that successful. 

On the other hand his Liederbuch für Schulen seems to have been very widely used in schools. It was first published in the 1870s and then regularly republished in new editions. This here is the 11th edition that came out in the early 1880s. It remained on the market until the 1920s when a 35th edition with 188 songs became available. 

Apparently Steingräber had no time to write four-part arrangements for these songs and therefore outsourced this task to Robert Schwalm (1845-1912), a composer, arranger, editor and choirmaster who worked in Königsberg since 1875 (information from Nordostdeutsche Komponisten, Edition Romana Hamburg). Schwalm had already edited other works for Steingräber publishing house, mostly piano music and he remained a regular contributor to his program (information found via Hofmeister XIX). 
  • Robert Schwalm, 123 Volkslieder und Gesänge zum Schulgebrauch in Mittel- und Oberklassen. Der 18. Auflage des "Liederbuchs für Schulen von Gustav Damm" entnommen und für gemischten Chor bearbeitet. Mit besonderer Berücksichtigung der Verfügungen der kgl. Regierungen und Schulkollegien über Schullieder-Sammlungen, Leipzig, Steingräber, n. d. [1889, see Hofmeister XIX, September 1889, p. 371]
    pdf (61,2 MB)
Songbooks for schools were a lucrative field and therefore Schwalm did one himself, but of course for another publisher. This Schulliederbuch first came out in 1890 and remained in print at least until 1913 when a 9th edition was published. I have here the 4th edition from 1899: 
  • Robert Schwalm, Schulliederbuch. 188 ein- und zweistimmige Lieder nebst einer kurzgefaßten Chorgesangschule. Mit besonderer Berücksichtigung der Verfügung der Königl. Regierungen und Schulkollegien über Schullieder-Sammlungen. 4. Auflage, Halle, Gesenius, 1899; first edition with 183 songs listed in Hofmeister, Oktober 1890, p. 442; 3rd edition, November 1896, p. 576)
    pdf (58,5 MB)
It should be added that Schwalm also edited another collection of four-part arrangements for schools, the Chorsammlung zum Unterricht an Schulen that was first announced in Hofmeisters in April 1887 (p. 192). That one sold apparently very well. I have the 14. edition published - posthumously - in the 1920s. According to the title-page this was the "111.-116. Tausend". In fact successful songbooks for schools were most welcome as a source of safe and steady income for both its editors and their publishers.

Old German Songbooks, No. 14: Volkslieder-Album (1864)

  • Volkslieder-Album. Eine Sammlung ausgewählter Volkslieder für eine Singstimme mit Begleitung des Pianoforte, Berlin, Trautwein, n. d. [1864]
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This is a collection of some of the most popular so-called "Volkslieder" with simple piano accompaniments. These kind of booklets were cheaper than single sheet music editions but looked better and more sophisticated than songbooks. The target audience were amateur musicians who loved to sing and make music at home. 

There is no publication date, but a book with this title in Hofmeisters Monatsberichten in April 1864 (p. 83). Here we can find altogether 32 songs with simple piano arrangements and one may say that they were among the most popular from this genre. Besides the well known German standards like the unavoidable "Lorely" this booklet also includes of generous amount of foreign pieces, of course with German texts.

Thomas H. Bayly's "Long, Long Ago" had become immensely popular in Germany but it was usually regarded as an "Irisches Volkslied" (No. 30: "Lang' ist es her"). Thomas Moore's "The Last Rose of Summer" was also well known since Friedrich von Flotow had used it in his opera "Martha" in 1847 (here No. 13: "Letzte Rose"). Not at least the anonymous editor included "Robin Adair", at that time ubiquitous in songbooks of all kinds. There were also Sicilian, Russian and Swedish songs. A favourable review can be found in Pädagogischer Jahresbericht 16, 1864 (Leipzig 1865, pp. 407 & 409, at BStB-DS):
"Das sind wirklich 'ausgewählte', oder vielmehr auserwählte Volkslieder, 32 an der Zahl, mit leicht spielbarer, sehr discreter Klavierbegleitung; eine Sammlung, die nichts enthält, was nicht musikalisch charaktervoll, poetisch bedeutsam wäre, und welcher deshalb die weiteste Verbreitung - auch um der hübschen Ausstattung willen - zu wünschen ist".
Another review in the AMZ in 1867 (Vol. 2, 1867, p. 161, at Google Books) was not as positive. This writer admonished the complete lack of information about the songs in this collection: 
"[...] wie es sich der Herausgeber überhaupt sehr bequem mit dem Nachweise gemacht hat; so hat er es nicht einmal der Mühe für werth gehalten, die namen der Componisten, welche ja meistentheils bekannt sind, anzumerken, nur selten treffen wir einen Namen [...] Wir möchten unserseits nur den Herausgeber fragen, ob das Lied 'Hans und Liese' zu den Volksliedern zu zählen und warum der Name des Componisten (Curschmann) nicht genannt ist? Soll etwa durch das Letztere die Einschmuggelei gedeckt werden?"
Other songs were lifted from Friedrich Silcher's books. The "Matrosenlied" was written by Gerhard and Pohlenz, the German words for "Robin Adair" were also by poet Wilhelm Gerhard, to name only some more examples. But this sloppiness was not untypical for the attitude of many publishers and editors towards the "Volkslied"-genre. Eveybody who had tagged his songs that way - or whose songs were regarded as "Volkslieder" - would quickly find them reprinted in other collections, usually without proper acknowledgement. "Folk songs" were seen as common property, no matter who had written them and the music publishers felt justified to recycle them for free.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Sheet Music: Carl Krebs, "Die süsse Bell", 1841 (Burns in Germany)

  • "Die süsse Bell". Gedichtet von dem Schotten Robert Burns. In Musik gesetzt Für eine Singstimme mit obligater Pianoforte-Begleitung und Fräulein Sophie Löwe Kön. Preuss. Kammersängerin zugeeignet von C. Krebs, Kapellmeister, Op. 90, Schuberth & Comp., Hamburg u. Leipzig, n. d. [1841]
    Download pdf (5,7 MB, my own scan)
 I have already mentioned a couple of times the great fad for Robert Burns in Germany that started in the late 1830s. A considerable amount of translations as well as a great number of new musical settings for these German adaptations were published until the end of the century (see again for the background: Selle 1981). Carl Krebs (1804-1880, see Fürstenau in ADB 17, 1883, pp. 99-100; also Christern 1850), Kapellmeister at the court in Dresden, was among the first composers to turn his attention to the germanized Burns.

It seems he found Wilhelm Gerhard's book of translations (Robert Burns' Gedichte, Leipzig 1840, available at BStB-DS) in a bookshop and was so fascinated by these texts that he "immersed himself in it at home at his piano" and then "created a significant series of songs" (this story from Christern 1850, p. 31, at BStB-DS). The first 9 were published in December 1840 (see the advert in the AMZ, Vol. 42, No. 52, p. 1078, at Google Books), among them "Mein Herz ist im Hochland" - translation not by Gerhard but by Ferdinand Freiligrath - which I have already discussed here (see here). More would follow during the next couple of years (see Dupont 1971, p. 142-3).

"Die süsse Bell" was first announced in Hofmeisters Monatsberichten in April 1841 (p. 61). It is a German version of "My Bonie Bell" (see Scots Musical Museum, IV, 1792, No. 387, p. 401, at the Internet Archive):
The smiling spring comes in rejoicing,
And surly Winter grimly flies;
Now crystal clear are the falling waters,
And bonny blue are the sunny skies.
Fresh o'er the mountains breaks forth the morning,
The ev'ning gilds the Ocean's swell;
All Creatures joy in the sun's returning,
And I rejoice in my Bonie Bell.

The flowery Spring leads sunny Summer,
The yellow Autumn presses near,
Then in his turn comes gloomy Winter,
Till smiling Spring again appear.
Thus seasons dancing, life advancing,
Old Time and Nature their changes tell;
But never ranging, still unchanging,
I adore my Bonie Bell.
 Krebs used the translation included in Wilhelm Gerhard's book (No. 116, p. 203, at BStB-DS):
Der Frühling kehret lächelnd wieder;
Der eisig grimme Winter flieht;
Das Bächlein rinnt, und bunt Gefieder
Melodisch froh den Wald durchzieht.
Wie mild die Luft! wie sinkt die Sonne
In Purpurglanz dem Meere zu!
Du, Frühling, schenkst uns solche Wonne:
Mir, süße Bell, den Himmel du!

Der Lenz verblüht, des Sommers Farben
Verweht des Herbstes kühlre Luft,
Und Schnee bedeckt das Feld der Garben,
Bis wiederkehrt der Blume Duft.
So tanzt das Jahr; vorüber schweben
Die Bilder wechselvoller Zeit:
Doch, süße Bell, mit Seel' und Leben
Bleib' ich im Wechsel dir geweiht!
 It is also interesting to have a look at his new tune:

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Christern in his little biographical work about Carl Krebs claimed that this was the best of the series (p. 31, at BStB-DS) and it also may have been the most popular because it was published again several times - sometimes in new arrangements - during the coming years (see Hofmeister XIX, October 1841, p. 157, December 1841, p. 182, November 1842, p. 170, December 1844, p. 190, December 1848, p. 189).

  • [J. W.] Christern, Carl Krebs, als Mensch, Componist und Dirigent. Eine biographisch-musikalische Studie, Hamburg & New York 1850 (available at BStB-DS)
  • Wilhelm Dupont, Werkausgaben Nürnberger Komponisten in Vergangenheit und Gegenwart, Nürnberg 1971
  • Moritz Fürstenau, Art. Krebs, Karl August, in ADB 17, 1883, pp. 99-100 (available at BStB-DS)
  • Rosemary Anne Selle, The Parritch and the Partridge: The Reception of Robert Burns in Germany. A History, 2 Vols, Phil. Diss., Heidelberg 1981 (now available as: 2nd Revised and Augmented Edition, Frankfurt/M. 2013)

  • The code for the midi-player used here is c/o: The problem with midi - Note for webmasters ( Many thanks

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Old ([this time:] Swiss) Songbooks, No. 13: Ignaz Heim, Sammlung von Volksgesängen für den Männerchor (1863)

  • [Ignaz Heim (ed.)] Sammlung von Volksgesängen für den Männerchor. Herausgegeben von einer Kommission der zürcherischen Schulsynode, unter Redaktion von I. Heim. Zehnte, vermehrte und verbesserte Auflage. Fünfte Stereotyp-Ausgabe, Zürich, Fries & Holzmann, 1863
    Download pdf (53,5 MB, as usual my own scan of a book from my collection)
Ignaz Heim (1818-1880; see ADB 50, 1905, pp. 133-5, at BStB-DS; a short summary at Wikipedia) was one of the mainstays of the Swiss music scene for several decades. He made himself a name as a choirmaster, composer and editor of songbooks for choirs. I have already discussed one of his publications, the first volume of Neue Volksgesänge für den Männerchor (1863) (see No. 3 of this series, in this blog). The songbook presented here was another of his immensely popular collections of arrangements for Männergesangvereine. 

I have the 10th edition of this Sammlung von Volksgesängen - "expanded and improved" - that was published in 1863. According to the article in the ADB (p. 134) the first edition of the Sammlung von Volksgesängen had come out the same year. That means that there were at least 10 editions of this book in the course of one year. This collection remained on the market for several decades. The 119th edition was published in 1897. 

What kind of songs does this book contain? The terms "Volksgesang" and "Volkslied" should not be confused with what we understand today as "folk songs" in the narrow sense. At that time all kinds of "simple" songs for the people, songs to sing at home or in amateur choirs, were regarded as "Volkslieder". Therefore we can find here numerous pieces by popular composers, for example 15 pieces by Friedrich Silcher as well as some by Abt, Nägeli, Mendelssohn, Marschner, Schumann, to name just a few. 

I am particularly interested in foreign songs that became popular in the German speaking countries during the 19th centuries. There are not much of these kind of songs in this volume. But at least the editor included a German version of Robert Burns' "My Heart's In The Highlands" ("Mein Herz ist im Hochland", No. 188, pp. 334-5). He used the well known translation by Ferdinand Freiligrath but the tune is different from all the the other variants of this song published in Germany. It is described as "Volksweise" but Heim didn't name the source. I haven't yet found this melody in any other earlier publication and I would not be surprised if he had simply written it himself and then passed of as a "folk tune". These kind of methods were not uncommon at that time:
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