Oak Leaves Falling
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An autobiographical song - Autumn 1968, woods near our homes in South Yorkshire. Written for Shirley in 2001, prompted by a sepia print of the photo I took that day. Well, would you be happy to have oak leaves carefully added to your hair?
Peak: #13   (151,036 songs currently in Acoustic)
Peak in sub-genre: #2   (19,855 songs currently in Acoustic Folk)
Upload date
October 05, 2006
Meta data
MP3 3.2 MB, bitrate 320 kbps.
3:31 minutes
David Kilpatrick © David Kilpatrick
Story behind the song
On January 30th 2001 I wrote the main guitar theme and quickly recorded it as a six-minute track with some variations, on my Lowden O-10. On January 31st around 11.00pm I edited it to regular number of bars and cut out the variations I didn't like. I added a rythm guitar track with a Landola 12-string, and a bodhran and shaker (played together) for a drum track. I wrote the words after looking up at a photograph of Shirley, aged 16, with oak leaves in her hair and thinking about when the picture was taken; we were walking under a big oak tree, on our way up the path which led past a lightning-blasted oak where all paths met. A leaf fell and lodged in her hair. I picked up more leaves, and added them, for photo. We toned the print sepia and vignetted it in antique style, and it's still in perfect condition 38 years later. We were both 16. The lyrics took about an hour to write, and the final recording of the vocals used two tracks but one has been cut right back.
I remember woods in autumn Walking by the running water Tree cathedral stained leaf windows Kissing at the gritstone altar Walking by the running water Hear the small birds calling, calling Through the rustling air Catch the oak leaves falling, falling Weave them in your hair Like the oak tree caught by lightning I was struck right to the heart Lost on paths that kept dividing Trusting that we should never part Yellow gorse and golden bracken Hawthorn hedge and weeping willow Sandy paths across the bent grass Cinder tracks to quarried hollows Rising smoke from coal-fires burning Street lamps softly glow Falling mists of evening turning Us again to home (chorus repeat, and line repeat to end)