About Drake Oranwood

Drake Oranwood (Eric Schrager) is a singer, songwriter, producer, lutenist, and medieval enthusiast who brings modern sensibilities to original songs set long ago and far away.

Known World Cooks & Bards

I’m in LaGuardia Airport waiting for a flight to St. Louis. This weekend is the 8th Known World Bardic Congress and Cooks Collegium (aka Known World Cooks & Bards, or KWCB). I’ve wanted to attend this event ever since I decided that “bard” was a thing I wanted to do. Known World gatherings for any given interest, or complementary pairing, usually happen every other year. (Other interests that have gatherings include dance, music, scribal arts, and brewing. There are many.) KWCB, however, is being held for the first time in 5 years, because various challenges came up (including the recent spate of 50th anniversaries for the SCA and the earliest kingdoms, as well as the challenges of finding a suitable site).

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Sheet music added for Pack Out Day

Since the song seemed to be well-received at Pennsic and afterward, it occurred to me that I had never finished the sheet music transcription for “Pack Out Day”, in case folks would like to learn it. (Part of the reason is that I hadn’t quite worked out what the intro and the ending were going to sound like for the recording. Given it’s more modern than most of my SCA stuff, we’ll do a class repeat and fade, but that doesn’t work so well for a live performance…I came up with an ending that works for the Pennsic concert, so I’ve transcribed the song basically the way it was performed there. (Caveat: I often find transcription mistakes later on, so there’s a non-zero chance I will revise this later.)

A&S Journey: Dowland, “Clear or cloudy”

Returning to Elizabethan music, this will be the third and last piece by John Dowland planned for this series (next, we will turn to Thomas Campion, a particular favorite of mine). Today’s entry, “Clear or cloudy”, is actually the newest period piece in my repertoire, as I have only started the process of learning to sing and play it in the last month or two.

Nature of work: Song (or “air”) for one to four voices and lute, lyrics in English

Historic source: John Dowland, (The Second Booke of Songes or Ayres, first published 1600, song 21)

Primary source: Full PDF facsimile can be downloaded at the International Music Score Library Project.

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A&S Journey: Thomas the Rhymer & “I Must Be Silent”

Coming back from a wonderful Pennsic, we will take a digression from Elizabethan music this week to focus on a new performance piece that originates from older source material. Feel free to watch or read the new song, “I Must Be Silent”, either before or after the discussion of its sources.

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Video from Pennsic: Carpe Diem f. Vincenzo da Brescia!

Last fall, when I started filking ABBA for Wilhelm and Vienna, I reached out to Vincenzo da Brescia (aka Vince Conaway), whose mastery of the hammered dulcimer delights listeners at Pennsic as well as at Renaissance Faires all over the country and internationally. The Mamma Mia filk demanded hammered dulcimer at the Pennsic concert, I suggested, and to my delight he agreed.

Vincenzo and I will be collaborating again soon on a recording for the album in progress, but in the meantime, here is “Carpe Diem” in its full, accompanied, silly glory.

Home from Pennsic (Pack Out Day!)

Just got home from Pennsic. For those of you who are on the road or unpacking, I thought I’d share this song from the concert on Monday (along with the song page).

Public service announcement

Because it seems to carry different weight coming from a man…

Harassing women in the street is not okay at Pennsic or anywhere else. It’s on the rise this year and we are all as a community responsible for keeping everyone safe. Here is a link to a bystander intervention guide.

The Pennsic community is beautiful and amazing. Everyone deserves to enjoy it without unwelcome attention, and if you don’t understand that, you’re going to learn it or we are going to remove you from this community.