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> Steeleye Span > Songs > Maddy Prior: Sing, Sing All Earth

Shepherds, Arise!

[ Roud 1207 ; trad. (Copper, 1971 / Pickard-Cambridge, 1926)]

Shepherd's Arise in one of the best-known songs from the Copper Family. Words and music are in both The Copper Family Song Book, and Bob Copper's book, A Song for Every Season. Bob and Ron Copper sang Shepherds, Arise! on the anthology Songs of Ceremony (The Folk Songs of Britain Volume 9; Caedmon 1961; Topic 1970). This recording is also on the Free Reed 4 CD anthology Midwinter. The Copper Family also sang this live in Will Noble's barn in Denby Dale, Yorkshire in September 1986, together with Martin Carthy, Norma Waterson and maybe a very young Eliza Carthy. This recording was included in the Holme Valley Tradition's cassette Will's Barn. And Bob, John and Jill Copper and Jon Dudley sang it on their CD Coppersongs 3: The Legacy Continues.

Waterson:Carthy recorded Shepherds, Arise! for their fourth album, A Dark Light. Eliza Carthy plays the violin prelude and accompanies the first three verses. Martin Carthy and Eliza Carthy finish on guitar and violin. Martin Carthy commented in the album's sleeve notes:

A lot of nonsense is talked in some quarters, when referring to us, about “The First Family of Folk” or even (God help us) “The Royal Family of Folk”. People who do that, in my view, want their backsides kicking—hard. If there is one family in this country who deserve such a title—and I must confess to the severest of collywobbles at the idea of anyone being saddled with such a miserable title—then that family is surely The Copper Family of Sussex. Shepherds, Arise! is a salute to them and gives us a chance to pay tribute to real nobility. Thanks very much.

In 1969, The Young Tradition split up while recording their album of Christmas songs with Shirley and Dolly Collins, The Holly Bears the Crown; and it was only in 1995 that the album was finally released. But two songs from it, The Boar's Head Carol and Shepherds Arise (here called The Shepherd's Hymn) were published by Argo on a single in 1974. Nearly a decade later, Peter Bellamy sang Shepherds Arise solo on his cassette Fair Annie: English, Irish, Australian and American Traditional Songs. Another recording of him with Louis Killen live at McCabe's Guitar Shop, Santa Monica, California in 1982 was included on his Free Reed anthology Wake the Vaulted Echoes.

Shepherds, Arise! was also sung by Oak on their 1971 album Welcome to the Fair; this track was also included on the Topic anthology The Season Round.

The Albion Band sang Shepherds Arise in 1985 on their album A Christmas Present from The Albion Band.

Maddy Prior and the Carnival Band recorded this carol as Sing, Sing All Earth on their 1997 Christmas tour for their live album Carols at Christmas and in 2005 on their DVD An Evening of Carols and Capers Another live recording, from the Maddy Prior, Family & Friends Christmas tour of 1999, was released on the CD Ballads and Candles.

Jon Boden, Jess and Richard Arrowsmith, Gavin Davenport, Fay Hield and Sam Sweeney sang Shepherds Arise at the Royal Hotel in Dungworth as the December 24, 2010 entry of Jon's project A Folk Song a Day.

Kate Rusby sang Shepherds Arise on her 2011 Christmas album, While Mortals Sleep.

Lyrics

The Copper Family sings Shepherds Arise!

Shepherds arise, be not afraid, with hasty steps prepare
To David's city, sin on earth,
With our blest Infant—with our blest Infant there,
With our blest Infant there, with our blest Infant there.
Sing, sing, all earth, sing, sing, all earth eternal praises sing
To our Redeemer, to our Redeemer and our heavenly King.

Laid in a manger viewed a Child, humility Divine,
Sweet innocence sounds meek and mild.
Grace in his features—grace in his features shine,
Grace in his features shine, grace in his features shine.
Sing, sing, all earth, sing, sing, all earth eternal praises sing
To our Redeemer, to our Redeemer and our heavenly King.

For us the Saviour came on earth, for us his life he gave,
To save us from eternal death
And to raise us from—and to raise us from the grave
To raise us from the grave and to raise us from the grave
Sing, sing, all earth, sing, sing, all earth eternal praises sing
To our Redeemer, to our Redeemer and our heavenly King.

Waterson:Carthy sing Shepherds Arise!

Shepherds, arise! be not afraid, with hasty steps repair
To David's city, sing all earth,
Unto our blest Infant—unto our blest Infant there,
To our blest Infant there, to our blest Infant there.
Sing, sing, all earth, sing, sing, all earth eternal praises sing
Unto our Redeemer, unto our Redeemer and our heavenly King.

Laid in a manger view the Child, humility Divine,
Sweet innocence, how meek and mild.
Grace in his features—grace in his features shines,
Grace in his features shines, grace in his features shines.
Sing, sing, all earth, sing, sing, all earth eternal praises sing
Unto our Redeemer, unto our Redeemer and our heavenly King.

For us the Saviour came on earth, for us his life he gave,
To save us from eternal death
And to raise us from—and to raise us from the grave
To raise us from the grave, to raise us from the grave
Sing, sing, all earth, sing, sing, all earth eternal praises sing
Unto our Redeemer, unto our Redeemer and our heavenly King.

(Repeat first verse)

Maddy Prior sings Sing, Sing All Earth

Chorus (after each verse):
Sing! Sing all earth!
Sing! Sing all earth! Eternal praises sing,
To our Redeemer,
To our Redeemer and our heavenly King!

Shepherds arise, be not afraid;
With hasty steps repair
To David's city: see the maid
With her blest Infant there.

For us the saviour came on earth,
For us his life he gave,
To save us from eternal death,
And raise us from the grave.

To Jesus Christ, our glorious King,
Be endless praises given.
Let all on earth his mercies sing,
Who made our peace in heaven!

Links

See also the Mudcat Café thread Lyr Add: Shepherds Arise.