William Pint & Felicia Dale

Celebrating the ocean in song

When I see winter return


For a dozen years we took part in the Magical Strings Celtic Yuletide concerts in the Pacific Northwest. We collected a number of seasonal songs for the concerts and, after many requests for them we decided to put out this collection.

William first heard The January Man sung by that foremost singer of English songs, Martin Carthy. It was written by Dave Goulder, an English songwriter and master builder of dry stone walls.

Over the Hill and Over the Dale came to us by way of our friend John Roberts in his Nowell, Sing We Clear group. We fell in love with its beautiful images and phrases crafted by J. M. Neal (the same fellow who brought you Good King Wenceslas.)

Our friends Telynor (John and Anna Peekstok)recorded a version of Quant Je Voi Yver Retorner (When I See Winter Return) The lyrics tell of a wandering musician looking at the approaching season and wishing (advertising?) for a rich and kind patron to provide food and shelter in exchange for music. With the help of Felicia's mother we added extra verses describing more of the wonderful things musicians might dream of when the weather turns cold and a description of the many benefits of sheltering wandering minstrels (Tell Bill Gates we're open to offers!)

Ring in the New Year (Ring It In) has become a tradition at the Yuletide concerts. A round takes on a life of its own when about 900 people are joining in. We added parts in the studio (though not quite that many of them.)

The opening notes of the great Irish harper, O'Carolan's Planxty Loftus Jones sound very much like Joy to the World.

The traditional German carol, Lo, How a Rose E'er Blooming is a melody lovely enough to stand without much beyond a voice or two. We added a few whistles though.

The Woodcutter's Song provides some valuable information for those with fireplaces or wood stoves as well as an atmosphere of warmth and light.

The Copper Family is one of the first families of song in England and their Christmas Song The Trees Are All Bare reminded us of some of the traditional songs that crossed the Atlantic and settled in the Appalachian Mountains hundreds of years ago.

As fans of nautical music, we couldn't resist the urge to take a few liberties with I Saw Three Ships by giving it the feel of a sea shanty. The jig that follows, Scotland Over the Border, comes from the fine Irish tune collection, The Northern Fiddler.

Our version of Tomorrow Shall be my Dancing Day uses only the Christmas verses of a much longer song. Usually done played to a Morris Dance tempo, we've slowed it down considerably.

The great Scottish poet Robert Burns’ best known song, Auld Lang Syne closes our album as it used traditionally to close out each year and welcome in the new.

The January Man
Tomorrow Shall be my Dancing Day
Planxty Loftus Jones
Lo, How a Rose E'er Blooming
Quant Je Voi Yver Retorner
The Trees Are All Bare
The Woodcutter's Song
Over the Hill and Over the Dale
I Saw Three Ships
Ring in the New Year
(Ring It In)
Auld Lang Syne

Produced by:

William Pint & Felicia Dale
Recorded at:

JB Productions, Bellevue, WA., Engineered by:

Jim “Engineer Boy” Bachman
and Alicia Healey
Cover photo by
Annette Brigham,
Photo by
R. Carroll
Graphic design by:

A. Robineau

Waterbug Records WBG 0039 ©1997 William Pint & Felicia Dale

Felicia Dale vocals, hurdy-gurdy, whistles
William Pint vocals, acoustic guitar, Octave mandolin, bodhran.

Thanks to:
Captain Dale for financial and moral support
Adrienne Robineau
J.B. for his ceaseless good spirits

 A collection of songs for the winter season. These songs try to capture that feeling of the fireplace’s warmth against the cold of the long winter nights.

When I See Winter Return for me is a jewel among the albums I have received and played so far this year from all of the record companies.”

Michael Schroeter

Country Folk Radio Show

Buende, Germany