recognising/identifying an old song

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yaoayao
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recognising/identifying an old song

Postby yaoayao » Tue May 24, 2016 8:34 pm

Hello fellows,

in 1915 or 1916 gave the Chinese Buddhist Master LI Shutong new text to a song from the USA and used it (the new text and the original melody with piano accompany) in Buddhist ceremonies in China. Master LI wrote only that the composer of song was American and his name was "Smith W. G.".

Melody and piano accompany of the song with the new Chinese text is attached here. May be you can help in recognising and identifying:

1. Who is "Smith W. G."? (I guess it may be William George Smith from Cleveland Ohio. But I could not find this melody from his works which I can find.)
2. The original song? Do you know it?

Any help would be appreciated

thanks
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jossuk
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Re: recognising/identifying an old song

Postby jossuk » Thu May 26, 2016 2:07 am

I agree with your guess about the original composer. It might help if you could give a translation of the text. Also, there are a few inaccuracies in the piano accompaniment (measures 5 and 6) where the melody notes do not match the vocal part.

yaoayao
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Re: recognising/identifying an old song

Postby yaoayao » Mon May 30, 2016 8:39 pm

Hello Jossuk,
thanks for your answer. The Chinese text was given by Master LI, which should have nothing to do with the original text in English. The Chinese text is about the "Honesty", something like "only honesty is most import ...". It is hardly to translate the Chinese text into English.
As to measures 5 and 6, may be Master LI changed a little to pass the Chinese text, I don't know. But from known examples he would just write new Chines text and use the original melody and piano accompany.
Thank you for your agreement that the original composer is William George Smith. But based on which of his work??

Sorry, the guessed original composer should be "Wilson George Smith", not "William George Smith".


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