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battleplan

by Bella Hardy

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    Winner: Best Singer BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards 2014 Bella Hardy's new studio album battleplan, the brooding follow-up to the award winning Songs Lost & Stolen. On battleplan, traditional ballads are re-imagined from a female perspective, and personal experiences are reflected against fairy tales and folklore. Allowing the old and the new to mingle more than on previous albums, Bella has chosen to record some of her favourite traditional songs; songs which would be familiar to many had they not undergone a fair amount of repurposing, amalgamating and, in some cases, entire tune transplants – as is essential to the folk process. In Hardy's hands, songs some hundreds of years old could've been written yesterday, while those from her own pen have the echoes of history behind them. Of her own songs, Bella says: "I've always snuck bits of my own life into songs - that's just the way I write. But in the past I've altered it enough so it's no longer about me. I don't feel the need to turn songwriting into my therapy, although I enjoy it in others. But on this album I've been more honest, which I don't regret." Produced by Mattie Foulds (responsible for recordings by Karine Polwart, Alasdair Roberts, Lau and many more), Bella is backed on battleplan by her band The Midnight Watch, featuring the top drawer talents of Mattie himself on drums, Anna Massie on guitar & banjo, Angus Lyon on keys & accordion, and James Lindsay on bass.

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  • Full Digital Discography

    Get all 15 Bella Hardy releases available on Bandcamp and save 25%.

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality downloads of Love Songs, Among These Stars (Black Lives Matter) (Single), Postcards & Pocketbooks: The Best of Bella Hardy, Colorado (single), The Same Mistakes (single), Hey Sammy, Eternal Spring, With The Dawn, and 7 more. , and , .

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1.
I've been loving you Like a soldier in the peacetime waiting for the war With my heart on the horizon and one eye on the door I'd swallowed up my pride And the tears that made my throat raw, conceded my defeat When that sound came to my window so neat and so complete Gypsy voices, singing Dum... Bought by a man with gold and silver and shoes, and a promise Thought I'd be a good man's wife and life would be complete But the nights turned cold and the moon changed her face and my temper And you looked right through me, like you never knew me I've been loving you Like the frosted trees of winter, waiting for the spring But my heart was sweetly melted when first I heard him sing Oh my dark eyed gypsy Dum... I kicked off my heels and I dressed in leather And I straight ran down the stairs to my true love He said “Will you go with me my darling one, my dearie? And I swear Lord Cassilis will ne'er come near thee” What care I for feather beds? 'll be sleeping in the fields for such a love as this Let Lord Cassilis keep his money, I'll keep my gypsy's kiss And his soft voice singing Dum...
2.
Oh now brave boys, you're marching off to foreign wars Drums a' beating, banners flying The Devil, tonight my home you'll see Love fare thee well Oh, whisky you're the devil, you're leading me astray Over hills and mountains and to Americay You're sweeter, stronger, decenter than any man my way Whisky you're my darling drunk or sober If you've no taste for whisky, let wormwood steal your soul If you're looking for false hearted girls The Devil, tonight my home you'll see Love fare thee well The sea's too full of witchcraft, you'll sooner sink than swim But if you reach the furthest shore The Devil, tonight my home you'll see Love fare thee well They say new friends are silver, and old friends they are gold But when your friends have drunk you dry The Devil, tonight my home you'll see Love fare thee well
3.
When I was on horseback, wasn't I pretty When I was on horseback at the break of the day Wasn't I pretty when I rode from the city And met with my downfall on the first day of May Come mother, come father, and sit down beside me Come sit down beside me and hear my sad case For my poor heart it is breaking, and my head it is aching And my soldier has left me in shame and disgrace Why couldn't he tell me before he disordered me Why didn't he tell me his secret in time For I could have bought pills, and the salts of white mercury But now I am done for, and cut down in my prime So beat the drum slowly, and play the pipes lowly Play me a dead march as we come along And lift my wretched body and lay me down easy I'm a true hearted girl, never meant to do wrong
4.
All my friends and all you flash girls, take a warning by me And never build your nest at the top of the tree For the green leaves they will wither and the roots will decay And the beauty of a young girl so soon fades away Once I had the colour as red as the rose But now I am pale as the lily that grows My looks are all gone like the men from my door And it if wasn't for flash company I'd have never have been so poor Singing and dancing were all my delight And keeping flash company has ruined me quite It's ruined me quite and a great many more And if it wasn't for flash company I'd have never have been so poor So take this yellow handkerchief in remembrance of me And I hope you will wear it in your flash company Flash company's been the ruin of me, and a great many more And if it wasn't for flash company I'd have never have been so poor
5.
I buried you down, I buried you deep deep down I buried you down, I buried you deep deep down I buried you down Now my heart is in three pieces The smallest of the three Is trapped inside of me A tiny shard that rattles where the whole thing used to be The second follows you As you drink through the town And knows of every dark eyed girl that you parade around Three pieces of my heart Three pieces of my heart Three pieces of my heart Three pieces of my heart The last piece wanders lost But love, that was the cost The biggest part of my poor heart had no-one left to trust So a warning take by me Don't share your love for free For men will lie as surely as there's salt in the salt sea Three pieces of my heart Three pieces of my heart Three pieces of my heart Three pieces of my heart I buried you down, I buried you deep deep down I buried you down, I buried you deep deep down Now my heart is in three pieces
6.
Ghosts by my bed I see when I'm waking And I sigh to my sister, I'd rather be sleeping Last night I dived in the deep blue sea with a man that loved me Why couldn't I stay Sleeping Beauty? In the broad light of day how the ugly shows in me With my soft eyes closed I was his perfection But here I stand before you now with my eyes wide open The day has turned sour and it's only 10.30 I'm flighty and I'm lusty, and as she said, hell's murky We go out and we live and we roam, and then we bring the worst of ourselves home again Wars, they are lost before they're begun For battles, they never go to plan I'm a disappointment from the moment I rise to the moment I close my eyes But here I stand before you now with my eyes wide open Beware those who want their women to be roses without thorns For life's as much in kisses as it is in blood and grit Look like the innocent flower, but be the serpent under it
7.
Through lonesome woods I took my way So dark so dark as dark can be The leaves were shivering on every tree Which don't you think was grief to me Don't you think was grief to me As I was going through Dibden town I saw my true love sitting down Saw another girl sitting on my man's knee Which don't you think was grief to me Don't you think was grief to me I called my true love by his name And up he rose and to me came I gave him kisses by one two three But none so sweet as he gave me None so sweet as he gave to me Now winter's gone, the summer's come The small birds from their nest is flown He's told me plainly unto my face “You're not the young girl I love best Not the young girl I love the best” Through lonesome woods then I'll make my way So dark so dark as dark can be I'll never love if not loved by thee Which don't you think is grief to me Don't you think it's grief to me
8.
An outlandish knight came from the north lands And he scarcely could leave me alone And he promised he take me the wide world to see Oh fly home lost ladies, fly home He said “Come fetch to me some of your father's bright gold Fetch me some of your mother's own fee And come fetch me the best nags from out of your yard Where they stand full thirty and three Where they stand full thirty and three” She's mounted onto her silver-white horse And he's mounted her father's strong grey And they've rode till they've come to the rocky sea shore Three dark hours before it was day “Oh light off, light off your silver-white horse And deliver yourself unto me For six pretty girls have I drowned right here And the seventh girl you now shall be Oh the seventh girl you now shall be” “Pull off, pull off your soft silken gown And deliver it here unto me For the fabric's too fine and too costly by far To let rot in the cold briny sea And pull off, pull off your good holland smock And deliver it here unto me For it seems like a waste to let such clothes be lost While the fishes they nibble at thee While the fishes they nibble at thee” “Well if I must strip down full naked and bare Cut the thorn that grows there by the brim Or else it might catch in my curly gold hair And tear my glittering skin” Well he's taken his knife and he's turned to the thorn That grows by the salt water's brim But so speedy she's run and she's pushed him so hard That she's thrown this false young man in To the foam she's fast thrown him in He's tumbled up high and he's tumbled down low Till he's come to the rocky sea side, crying “Catch hold of my hand, my pretty fair lady And I will make you my bride” “Oh lie there, lie there, you false hearted man Make your bed in the deep briny blue For six pretty girls have you drowned right here But the seventh girl has drowned you Oh the seventh girl has drowned you”
9.
If you Find yourself following The sound of laughter tumbling down the street Find your feet stumbling into that old pub where we used to meet If you Find your lips mumbling The soft words to that song we used to sing Maybe you might ring me Maybe you might think to call Or maybe you don't think at all If you Find your eyes wandering And looking for that 'breakfast, no thanks' glance Just the chance of finding some gone Monday morning Sunday night romance If you Find the nights drawing in And you're tired of another lonesome fling Maybe you might ring me Maybe you might think to call Or maybe you don't think at all If you Find your lips mumbling The soft words to that song we used to sing Maybe you might ring me Maybe you might think to call Or maybe you don't think at all
10.
Living for limelight, scared of the solitude Looking for loneliness and scared of the crowds we need We're not impressed with the fireworks We're looking for Lucy's spiders in the sky And we're broken down How could I really expect you to stay When even the moon's slowly drifting away? Drifting away The jigsaw's complete with pieces remaining Bent down and worn out and no longer fitting We didn't lose faith, the road rose up and took it And we're broken down I forgot what to sing, you forgot what to say And even the moon's slowly drifting away Drifting away... We melted down the medals when the game went to our heads We fired the philosophers and went back to our beds We're looking for stars on an overcast day And even the moon's slowly drifting away Drifting away...
11.
One More Day 02:48
Have you heard the news, Charlie? One more day We're homeward bound tomorrow One more day Only one more day, Charlie Only one more day Oh rock and roll me over, Charlie One more day Heave and sight the anchor, Charlie One more day Oh heave and sight the anchor One more day Only one more day, Charlie Only one more day Oh rock and roll me over, Charlie One more day I'm bound away to leave you, Charlie One more day But I will not deceive you One more day Only one more day, Charlie Only one more day Oh rock and roll me over, Charlie One more day One more day, Charlie One more day Oh rock and roll me over, Charlie One more day

about

Bella Hardy's brooding follow-up to the award winning 'Songs Lost & Stolen'

credits

released April 22, 2013

Featuring Bella Hardy & The Midnight Watch
Bella Hardy: Singing, Fiddle, Clonky Piano
Anna Massie: Guitar, Banjo, Vocals
Angus Lyon: Piano, Rhodes, Accordion, Vocals
James Lindsay: Double Bass, Vocals
Mattie Foulds: Percussion, Sneaky Piano

Produced by Mattie Foulds
All songs published by Domino Publishing Co. Ltd. (PRS)
Recorded and mixed by Mattie Foulds at Mobile With A Home Studios, Heriot Toun
Mastered by Stuart Hamilton, Castlesound Studios, Pencaitland Photographs by Louis DeCarlo
Design by Emma Hardy at Noe Design
Noe Records NOE06

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Bella Hardy UK

“Brit folk's finest” Mojo Magazine • “Enduringly seductive” The Telegraph • “A fine, no-nonsense interpreter of traditional music and an excellent songwriter” The Guardian • “An aura of sophisti-cation that will win over listeners who never set foot in a folk club” The Sunday Times • “…a shining star in the folk scene’s firmament” fRoots Magazine • “A triumph of folk art-pop” Songlines Magazine ... more

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