monday music trivia: the common root of “Scarborough Fair/ Canticle”, “Girl from North Country” and “Boots of Spanish Leather”
A bit of a return to Monday music trivia after a while off, mostly because I was talking about this connection the other day and thought it was interesting.
Which British folk singer’s arrangement of the traditional Anglo-American ballad Scarborough Fair (aka “The Elfin King”) was appropriated by Simon & Garfunkel and also inspired Bob Dylan’s songs “Girl from the North Country” and “Boots of Leather”?
Martin Carthy taught Paul Simon his version of “Scarborough Fair”. Art Garfunkel did addition arrangement of the song before it was recorded. Carthy still plays and records. Dylan also borrowed some of the arrangement and melody for “Girl of the North Country” and then adapted that song for “Boots of Spanish Leather”.
These are three great songs. Listen to them all below. Can you hear the similarities.
Simon & Garfunkel – Scarborough Fair/ Canticle (streaming)
Bob Dylan – Girl from the North Country (streaming)
Bob Dylan – Boots of Spanish Leather (streaming)