Sunday, March 20, 2011

Pål sine høner

It was my friend's father's 80th birthday party today. As is common with important birthdays in Norway, there was a big party with 40 or 50 family members gathered, complete with an entertainment program. I came in to play guitar for a rendition of Pål sine høner (Paul's hens), a traditional folk tune that my friend had written new words to match events from her father's life. I got some gifts for my guitar playing, so I suppose this marks my debut as a "professional" musician.

Here's a video of the song. It tells the story of a boy who is watching after the hens and one escapes. A fox gets it, the boy fights off the fox with a stone, but the hen is mortally wounded and the boy doesn't dare go home. But he takes the hen to the local mill and trades it for a bag a flour, and thus can return home with head high. It supposed to be some kind of social commentary where the fox represents intrusive government. I'll leave it to you to figure out the metaphor.

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