Monday, December 20, 2010

The Great Song Book

The Great Song Book
edited by Timothy John
music edited by Peter Hankey
illustrated by Tomi Ungerer
Ernest Benn, 1975
originally published by Diogenes Verlag as Das Grosse Liederbuch

No Great Monday Give today, but Santa Claus is Coming to Town on classic VHS has won me a few moments at the computer. I thought I'd share this book since it's getting gifted in about 24 hours. Who doesn't want Tomi Ungerer for Christmas, no? The pages house a collection of 60 traditional songs and ballads, all well and good, but interspersed are full-page plates and random Ungerer drawings illustrating the tunes. I am simply in love with these pictures. The topmost was taken from the Christmas Songs chapter, in which you can also see Mary lying down in the manger, glowing post-birth (in pure uncensored Tomi-style).

There's also Songs of Dance and Play, Fireside Songs, Folk Songs and more. Goosey, Goosey Gander... John Peel... Clementine... The Ash Grove... and my all-time favorite Christmas Song, Good King Wenceslas...

Good King Wenceslas looked out
On the feast of Stephen
When the snow lay round about
Deep and crisp and even
Brightly shown the moon that night
Though the frost was cruel
When a poor man came in sight
Gathering winter fuel.


Also by:
The Hat
Zarelda's Ogre
Seeds and More Seeds
The Three Robbers
Moon Man
Orlando The Brave Vulture
Christmas Eve at the Mellops'
I Am Papa Snap and These Are My Favorite No Such Stories
The Beast of Monsieur Racine
The Mellops Strike Oil
Book of Various Owls
No Kiss for Mother


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