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Welcome to Hyperion Records, an independent British classical label devoted to presenting high-quality recordings of music of all styles and from all periods from the twelfth century to the twenty-first.
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Geoffrey Wright’s Transatlantic Lullaby is a song of immediate appeal, and was written in 1936 for a Gate Theatre musical on that most English of subjects, an English prep school; the matron is an American floozie who sings her charges to sleep with her Transatlantic Lullaby. Both the soft-shoe shuffle of the refrain and the haunting parallel triads that accompany the singer’s opening lines unerringly conjure up the sleeping city.
New York skyscrapers are sleeping;
Dawn comes creeping on—
Street lamps are shining more clearly;
Night has nearly gone.
Poppa and Momma both are yawning now;
All their goodnights will soon be said.
It won’t be long until the morning now,
And time to go to bed.
Soft Manhattan evenings fall;
A velvet dusk envelops all;
On Hudson River distant tugboats cry.
Ship to ship, and shore to shore,
The waters make a shining floor,
And hum a transatlantic lullaby.
Wall Street is empty and dozing,
Broadway’s closing down.
The coppers go slowly plodding
Through the nodding town.
Bronx and Manhattan tuck the covers in;
Brooklyn and Queens put out the light.
Each little doorway lets its lovers in—
In from the dying night.
Soft Manhattan evenings fall …
The sky is silky dark;
It’s cool in Central Park;
The trolley cars go clanging past.
The busy day is done;
The lights fade one by one,
And broadway goes to bed at last.
Tomorrow seems a distant dream,
And still the rocking waters gleam
And hum a sleepy transatlantic lullaby.
Reproduced by permission of Chappell Music Ltd and International Music Publications