Holly and the Ivy
play mp3 sample: The Holly and the IvyFree PDFs/mp3
pdfs, mp3 – a cappella SAB – traditional English, new words by Tony & Margaret Dale Barrand, arr. Peter Amidon
Free download. You get a pdf score of the song and an mp3 recording of Peter and Mary Alice Amidon’s version of the song (recorded in 1989). You can try my transcription of Mary Alice’s and my harmony, or harmonize by ear.
Nowell Sing We Clear, originally Tony Barrand, John Roberts, Fred Breunig and Steve Woodruff (later replaced by Andy Davis), brought a feast of wonderful traditional English and American carols back into our repertoires. Here is their version of the traditional “Holly and the Ivy” with it’s original lyrics, recorded in the 1980’s. I highly recommend Nowell Sing We Clear book of songs: “Sing Nowell – Songs & Carols for Midwinter & Christmastide“, also available on our website store.
Tony Barrand’s wife Margaret Dale Barrand was an elementary school teacher. Tony and Margaret Dale collaborated on new verses for “The Holly and the Ivy”, turning it into song of the seasons that could be sung in Margaret Dale’s classroom.
Tony and Margaret Dale passed away in January 2022; I am grateful to their family for giving permission to include Tony & Margaret Dale’s song on this website.
THE HOLLY AND THE IVY
new verses by Tony & Margaret Dale Barrand
Oh the holly and the ivy,
when they are both full grown
Of all the trees that are in the wood,
the holly bears a crown.
Oh the rising of the sun
the running of the deer,
The playing of the merry organ,
sweet singing all in the choir.
Oh the holly bears a blossom,
as white as any flower
The rains of spring prepare the ground
with every gentle shower.
Oh the holly bears a leaf
as green as any grass
The corn it ripens in the field
as summer days do pass.
Oh the holly bears the bark
as bitter as any gall
As harvest ends the leaves turn gold
and from the trees do fall.
Oh the holly bears a berry
as red as any blood,
The heavy snows of winter
fill the dark and silent wood.