The Boring stuff
        This is the 4th edition of the Avacal bards book. I hope I manage to cover every thing. I know there are some things missing from this edition - much of it due to a computer crash - so please tell me if you are looking for something. You will notice that some songs are missing and have been replaced by website address' where you can find the music (either as recorded songs or actual music books). This is due to copy write. I hope to add the music for the new songs in a few weeks - once my computer is back up and running (some force really does not want me to get the 4th edition out). I will replace only the pages I change in the next print run of the 4th edition.

        I now have page numbers and a separate index of titles due to popular demand. J
        Thank you to everyone who helped on my never-ending project, and who gave me permission to use their songs. Thank you also to my proofreaders without you and your suggestions this book wouldn't be half as good as it is. (Viridis, Zena, Genevieve, Thorvald, Breannan, and Christine to name a few)

        If your song suggestions are not in here it’s not because I won’t include them eventually, it’s because I had to stop at ~100 pages so that I could add music scores (this pushed the size of the book up to 190 pages). Look for the next update sometime next year (2004).

        Please contact me if you’ve got songs you’d like added. J

        This book is intended to be a source for learning, and a method of recording the popular songs of the area. I have ignored some copyright laws in creating this book. In no way should it be sold for profit, and it should only be used for educational purposes. I apologize to those songwriters whom I didn’t contact about printing their songs. If you are one of the authors or know of a contact address for one of them and they haven’t been contacted by me about this project please drop me an email or snail mail – also if an author wishes a song removed please have them contact me. Thanks. J

Here’s to The Best Bardic Group, Avacal!
Let’s keep up the spirit. Hmmmm… I think that’s it...  

The Music 
        The music in this book is largely written out from my memory, which doesn’t always get the tune right… if you have a new or variant on a tune (or think I just got the tune all wrong) please contact me I’ll add or correct what I have. I also have minimal musical theory background - if the notation looks strange that's why. If you’d like to help, forward me music please - in gif or jpeg format…. I’d really like the help. 

Bardiquette Discussion, About This Book & Info For New Bards 

This book is made up of the favorite songs of the populace of Avacal. I know I've missed a bunch if you have a favorite that isn't in the book please email me and I'll see what I can do.

          I’ve tried to group like songs together, so look through the sections. I have included a very incomplete list of which people in Avacal commonly perform which songs. Hopefully this will help in finding a person to teach a song in here. If there is no performer listed the song is either commonly known, or I couldn’t remember who performed it. (If I missed you as a performer contact me, I will fix this.) 

          After some long discussions with a number of people I’ve sort of come up with Bard etiquette guidelines… If you have suggestions, or want to discuss a point with me, please do (I’m sort of muddling my way through this). 

1)    Take turns.

2)    There is no one right way to sing a song or its lyrics.

3)    Be attentive to the performer.

4)    If you can help it, don’t join in performances unless asked, or you know the performer well enough to know they don’t mind. Join in for choruses if indicated – and please indicate if you’d like people to join in. Some songs are exempt if every one joins in go for it.

5)    For informal (campfire) singing generally join in, especially if the performer remains seated – standing usually indicates that they’d like you to listen – but not always. Try to add to and not detract from the song when you join in… don’t drown out the singer….. confused yet? I know I am. J

6)    Encourage people when they are trying something new.

7)    Don’t be afraid to ask for help/critique from known bards (we don’t bite… much).  J

7.5)    Conversely, don’t critique someone unless they have asked for it, specifically from you.

8)    Share: the limelight, your knowledge, your songs and stories.

9)    If the person who wrote or filked the song is present at the bardic circle, ask them to perform it or ask their permission before you perform it .… I really should practice what I preach sometimes. J

10)     Practice everywhere to everyone all the time. (Not quite Bardiquette… oh well… be polite about it though)  


About the Indices
         The index number is not the page number, but the song number. This is so the book can be easily expanded. The next edition has page numbers included.

         The indices also include first and common lines, so if you don’t know the name of the song look up the line that floats around your head. (If I haven’t included a common line that bugs you tell me, I’ll add it.)  

         Also, the little monks that help me on this project have not figured out how to exclude the word “The” from alphabetizing the index, so look under “The” for songs that (might) begin with “The”.  

         If anyone has suggestions for alternate indices tell me… Thanks.  

The “How do I become a Bard” question
         To my knowledge there is no formal way to become a bard, just show up and sing, play, or tell stories. If you do it often enough, people will come to know you as a bard… But I could be wrong here, and perhaps there is an Avacal Secret Song Society (Ass s) with a secret Bardic initiation ceremony I don’t know about…. But for some reason people started calling me a bard one day (and frankly I don’t think I’m that good a performer, just very enthusiastic). So come out & join in, we’d love to hear you. JJ

       I’ll stop blabbing now… seems I got two pages of writing 

                                 -Kataryna Dragonweaver, January 16, 2003 
                                             (eclipsek @ DigitalWeb. net) <remove Spaces>