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THE SONG.
PERHAPS the most popular of all forms of verse is the song, and it is easy to understand why this is so. The sentiment embodied in a song is simple, direct, and lies on the surface of our# common nature. Love, patriotism, the blended associations of natural beauty with human feelings, the buoyant life and dangers of the deep,—these, and such-like materials of song, are topics that attract the fancy, and appeal to the hearts of all. Again, the song, if it is a good one, is short, its rhythm smooth and exact, its rhymes ring out clear, its words are simple and natural, and, moreover, it is generally wedded to a melody which lingers in the ear long after the sounds have died away. It makes no appeal to the intellect, but it stimulates the sensuousness of our nature, and thrills into life the dormant phantoms of memory.
It does not flavour of the " superior person " to say that the bulk of human kind do not possess cultivated artistic tastes : a sonnet of Shakspere's or a fugue by Bach would doubtless fall flat on the general ear, while a simple ballad or a pathetic song rarely fails to touch a sympathetic chord, or moisten the eye of the most apathetic listener.






E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III