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       John Ralph


This Pilgrims Progress. The Stories behind the Songs.

This Pilgrims Progress. The stories behind the songs.

1) Beads and Bows and Moccasins.

British Colombia, Canada, a few years ago. The Rocky Mountains. Stories of first nation people. They had their children taken away and English place names replaced their native ones. In America I saw an first nation group dancing for dollars.

2). Join in the Dance. A reflection on nature and our interconnectedness with it.

3).Ghost Dancer Spirit Warrior. After reading the book Jandamarra and the Bunuba resistance by Banjo Woorunmarra and Howard Pederson I was inspired to write this song about the amazing freedom fighter from the Kimberly. He was thought to have supernatural powers, he was a Ghost Dancer and Spirit Warrior.

4).McKinnons /Leaving Ely. Two Mandolin tunes. The first dedicated to Jamie McKinnon local Scottish folk singer and co organiser of the Waneroo folk club. So proud of his Scottish heritage.

I was in The RAF for a while and posted to RAF Ely in the UK. I wrote this march on leaving this wonderful place.

5).The Diet Song. I know lots of people who are dieting. Hmmmm!

6).The Little Tea room on the mountain side.(An Atheists Hymn).

Canada, Lake Louise. A trek up the mountain to the meeting of the six glaciers. When you near the top there is a little tea room. (it was heaven!!!).

When I observe people when walking I wonder if they approach life in the same way that they walk. Some dawdle along taking the easy path, some stray off the path to satisfy their never ending curiosity, some walk fast, head down to achieve their goal of getting to the top.

Dedicated to all of us non-believers who walk on without a guide.

7). Hymn to the Morning. Again, inspired by the Canadian Rockies. On getting back to Australia I added on the last two verses when hearing the Adani Mine would go ahead to provide more jobs.

8). The River. Walking on a winter’s day by the Swan River at Kangaroo point near Matilda bay. River was turbulent and swirling. This instrumental fell from my fingers on returning home.

9).Circle to the Left. My wife and I go Contradancing every month. A wonderful way to spend an afternoon. This dedicated to the Maylands Contradancing group and all dancers out there.

10) I’m Glad to be a Morris Dancer. I have always been on the fringes of the Morris but never had time to commit to them. There are some great teams here in Perth. Although this is a light-hearted look at the Morris it must be remembered that it has a history dating back to rituals of pagan times.

11).Morris Tunes. I used to lay in a duo with a great Melodeon player and all round nice chap Steve Green He was the founder member of the Kings Morris in Kings Lynn Norfolk, UK. These tunes were absorbed from him.

a) The Black Joke

b) Moll in the Wood

c) The Oystergirl.

12). Bat in the Bedroom. Canada. On the way to Banff. Stopped in a motel overnight. Two o’clock in the morning a fluttering in the bedroom. My worst nightmare.

13). Walk on Water. Many year ago Just after Deb and myself were married we loved in the middle east and travelled the world. I remember rice fields in India and water everywhere. This is a love song dedicated to Deb.

14.)The Little Tea Room remix. A slightly slower version in a different key with a mandolin riff. I couldn’t decide which one I liked