Hyperion Records

Day after day
January 1922
author of text

'Bridge: Songs' (CDD22071)
Bridge: Songs
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Track 17 on CDD22071 CD2 [3'58] 2CDs Dyad (2 for the price of 1)

Day after day
Rabindrinath Tagore was born in Calcutta and wrote in Bengali, translating much of his work into English himself. In 1913 he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. His collection of religious poems, Gitanjali, was provided with an introduction by W B Yeats, and six of the prose-poems were set to music by the American composer John Alden Carpenter in 1914. In 1917 Tagore published his own translation of his Bengali ‘Lyrics of love and life’ under the title of The Gardener and dedicated them to Yeats. As A E Housman in A Shropshire Lad and R L Stevenson in Songs of Travel, Tagore did not set out to tell a connected story. However, it is possible to select poems which imply one (as Somervell did with A Shropshire Lad and Vaughan Williams did with Songs of Travel). Bridge chose poems 20, 29 and 30, which are closely related love songs. Though composed over a period of three years, and published separately, it is clear Bridge thought of them as a related group. Giving the third song to male voice clarifies the underlying story of a hopeless love affair, in which the two participants are incapable of expressing their true feelings. In Day after day the girl wishes to give the man who ‘only comes and goes away’ some encouragement, but even so is unwilling that he should know where this encouragement comes from. The vague, wandering music expresses her indecision, the twisting melismas on the key phrase ‘he only comes and goes away’ showing her fascination with the mysterious man.

from notes by Michael Pilkington 1997

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