Rocking Carol [PDF Download]
This rather lovely lullaby carol was first published in 1920 in Czechoslovakia, from where it made its way into the Oxford Book of Carols, published in 1928.
The shape of the tune, and the repetition of the words ‘we will rock you’ do much to suggest the gentle rocking of a cradle. Formally, it seems to have an extra bar in the first phrase, but this is a rather charming addition that perhaps goes back to its origin as a folk carol.
Arrangement and teaching content
Our arrangement presents the tune simply shared between the hands, but we’ve chosen B flat major, which gives plenty of practice of reading B and E flats. Keep the transition between the hands as smooth as possible.
Although in one hand position, there are some useful stretches to be made and practice of playing D above middle C as a ledger-line note in the bass clef.
Despite the simplicity of the tune, a warm, rich harmony is possible by way of accompaniment, and this is the essence of the gentle duet part. Pupils should play an octave higher when playing as a duet, where their tune can shine and ‘sing’ in its own space.
David Blackwell & Karen Marshall
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