Solo Song Settings of the Poetry of Walter De la Mare. A Bibliography

Article excerpt

Adèle Paxton, Solo Song Settings of the Poetry of Walter de la Mare. A Bibliography. London: Walter de la Mare Society, 2011, 78 pp. Free digital access by emailing Giles de la Mare at giles@dial.pipex.com. Printed copy available for purchase, £10.00 sterling plus postage per copy via Giles de la Mare, 53 Dartmouth Park Hill, London NW5 1JD, UK.

"Slowly, silently, now the moon Walks the night in her silver shoon . . ."

The name Walter de la Mare (1873-1956) immediately summons to mind a flurry of poetry-such as these opening lines of "Silver." Many school children, even before they know the meaning of the word "shoon," delight in the imagery and alliteration of de la Mare's verses. Composers of song are as equally drawn to his writing, as indicated by more than 800 settings catalogued by Adele Paxton in this bibliography of solo song settings of de la Mare's poetry.

The catalogue encompasses songs that can be sung by solo voice. This includes unison songs, settings for voice and piano (with or without other instruments), and choral works that contain a section that can be excerpted for solo performance. Paxton prefaces the work with a brief biography of the poet. The bibliography is divided into two parts. The first section lists settings alphabetically by composer, and includes biographic information about the composer (date and place of birth and death), data about the publisher, and availability of each piece. In addition, Paxton includes details of the premiere and to whom it is dedicated, if known. The second part is organized alphabetically by song and poem title. The titles of the poems and the titles of the settings are cross-referenced, as composers often change the title of a poem when creating a musical setting. …