Wednesday, January 11, 2012

"Annabel Lee" by E.A.Poe as performed by Sarah Jarosz

Yesterday's newspaper brought word of this 20 year old acoustic musician to my attention. Sarah Jarosz is making herself heard, and known, as a fine musician and performer. This evening will mark her first appearance in Charlotte at one of my favorite venues, Neighborhood Theatre. Having not heard of this remarkable young woman before I went to You Tube and found several very nice arrangements of some well-known songs and ballads. But of all the songs I listened to, this is the one that got me.

Annabel Lee, which seems to be spelled several different ways, depending on where you look, (I have used the spelling from the 1940 Washington Square Press edition of "Great Tales and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe") is one of my favorite poems by Poe, and is probably the first one of his works I ever heard. It has that "sing-song" type of cadence to it which makes it perfect for the second grade, which is where I first heard it. That was 50 years ago.(Thanks, Mrs. Sanders!) But Ms. Jarosz has given it a new and unique quality. Her arrangement actually adds to the drama and mystique of the poem. It was an unexpected treat.

Ms. Jarosz, who is not yet 21, has already performed with Bela Fleck, Shawn Colvin and Vince Gill. That’s quite impressive for someone of her age. Keep your eye on her as her career continues to rise. She covers everyone from Edgar Allan Poe to Tom Waits, as well as writing some of her own compositions. For more information about this Ms. Jarosz, including booking info, use this link;

"Annabel Lee" by Edgar Allan Poe

It was many and many a year ago,
In a kingdom by the sea,
That a maiden there lived whom you may know
By the name of Annabel Lee;
And this maiden she lived with no other thought
Than to love and be loved by me.

I was a child and she was a child,
In this kingdom by the sea;
But we loved with a love that was more than love-
I and my Annabel Lee;
With a love that the winged seraphs of heaven
Coveted her and me.

And this was the reason that, long ago,
In this kingdom by the sea,
A wind blew out of a cloud, chilling
My beautiful Annabel Lee;
So that her highborn kinsman came
And bore her away from me,
To shut her up in a sepulchre
In this kingdom by the sea.

The angels, not half so happy in heaven,
Went envying her and me-
Yes!- that was the reason (as all men know,
In this kingdom by the sea)
That the wind came out of the cloud by night,
Chilling and killing my Annabel Lee.

But our love it was stronger by far than the love
Of those who were older than we-
Of many far wiser than we-
And neither the angels in heaven above,
Nor the demons down under the sea,
Can ever dissever my soul from the soul
Of the beautiful Annabel Lee.

For the moon never beams without bringing me dreams
Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;
And the stars never rise but I feel the bright eyes
Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;
And so, all the night-tide, I lie down by the side
Of my darling- my darling- my life and my bride,
In the sepulchre there by the sea,
In her tomb by the sounding sea.

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