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Music / Heather Dale

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Canadian recording artist and touring musician Heather Dale writes songs for "modern dreamers": witty, fun-loving, imaginative people who aren’t afraid to be different. Heather’s original songs tap into legends, mythology, history and fantasy.

Heather Dale is a full-time touring musician, whose original songs explore legends, mythology, history and fantasy, fusing the Celtic folk tradition with a healthy mix of world music and rock influences. Her most famous songs are based on Arthurian legends, with Mordred's Lullaby in particular becoming very famous. In 2015 a musical based on these works, Queens of Avalon, was funded and created via Indiegogo.


Heather's website can be found here.

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  • Light of the North (1996; cassette only — out of print; songs celebrating an idealized Medieval culture)
  • White Rose (1997; cassette only — out of print; songs celebrating an idealized Medieval culture)
  • The Kingsword (1997; cassette only — out of print; the first recording of some of Dale's King Arthur songs)
  • Bow To The Crown (1998; cassette only — out of print; songs celebrating an idealized Medieval culture)
  • Dances by the Marian Ensemble (1998; instrumental versions of Medieval dance music, re-released on CD in 2003)
  • The Trial of Lancelot (2000; Dale's first studio album, featuring 9 of her King Arthur songs)
  • Call The Names (2001; a compilation of 20 of Dale's songs, originally appearing on her cassette tapes)
  • The Call The Names Book (songbook) (2001)
  • This Endris Night (2002; Dale's arrangements of early Christmas carols; she plays all the instruments herself)
  • May Queen (2003; a follow-up to Dale's "The Trial of Lancelot" CD, with ten more of her original King Arthur songs)
  • The Road to Santiago (released in April 2005; ten original songs and two cover songs, all inspired by legends & folktales)
  • The Hidden Path: Live & Rarities (released in November 2006; fourteen tracks of live recordings, alternate recordings and traditional songs)
  • The Legends of Arthur (story/songbook; 120-page re-telling of the King Arthur legend, with sheet music for Dale's Arthurian songs) (2006)
  • The Gabriel Hounds (released in May 2008; fourteen original songs, all inspired by legends & folktales)
  • Heather Dale: Live in Köln (2008; live CD of a German concert)
  • Heather Dale: Live in Montreal (2008; live CD of a Canadian concert)
  • The Green Knight (released in July 2009; fourteen original songs inspired by the idealized Middle Ages and the Renaissance)
  • Avalon (released in December 2010; new versions of Dale's Arthurian Legend songs, 18 on one CD)
  • Heather Dale: Live in Connecticut (released in October 2011; live CD of an American concert)
  • Fairytale (released in December 2011; music about growing up, dealing with the real world, and still keeping a healthy dose of fantasy in your life)
  • Perpetual Gift (released in September 2012; a free CD experiment released by Dale, with 14 original songs performed live with her full band, plus an intro/outro explaining that fans are encouraged to copy & share the songs widely.)
  • My Celtic Heart (released in November 2013; sixteen of her favorite traditional Celtic ballads from her childhood.)
  • Imagineer (released in August 2014)
  • Spark (released November 2016; another Christmas Album.)
  • Heather Dale: Live in Dallas (released in September 2018)
  • Sphere (released in October 2018)


Heather Dale's music contains examples of

  • Abusive Parents:
  • Action Girl: Marie from Fille du Roy, and Sedna from Sedna.
  • Advertisement:
  • The Bard: Come and be Welcome and The Bards of Ealdormere encourage other bards and storytellers to join in.
  • Changeling Tale: Changeling Child is about a woman who accepts a changeling son from the fairies. He remains an infant for 50 years or more, since it's implied his human mother's ghost still cares for the immortal infant.
  • Courtly Love:
    • Tristan and Isolde covers the subject, even if it's of the more tragic side.
    • With Your Grace as Inspiration is a happier example.
  • Creation Story: Sedna is the Inuit story of the creation of sea life, rendered in song.
  • Dead Person Conversation: Lily Maid is Elaine of Astolat talking about her love for Lancelot from beyond the grave.
  • Daddy's Girl: The daughter of the Duke in The Old Duke is his only child and heir, and he is clearly very fond of her, valuing her as much as a son in a society that thinks he is a fool for it.
  • Exact Words: You have to be extremely careful when making requests of the fairies, as the human mother in Changeling Child discovered.
  • The Fair Folk: The song "Fair Folk" specifically addresses them and does a good job describing how creepy they can be.
  • The Fool:
    • Pierre in Pierre And Marianne. Also a Cloudcuckoolander.
    • Don Ambruglio in Up Into The Pear Tree.
  • Gayngst-Induced Suicide: The cover of "I Never Will Marry" is a love between two women, one of whom killed herself, and the protagonist will never marry a man as she pines for her.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar:
    • "I saw a maid milk a bull" from Martin Said To His Man. On the surface, it's meant to be just one of the improbable, drunken nonsensical things being said. But really? "I saw that maid milk that bull/With every stroke a bucket full."
    • "I've got a big knife with a rusted blade And a bunny-fur top that'll get you — ahem!" from The Smith's Circle.
    • In Pierre and Marianne, there's the line "My dear, I bring you my good ass I'm told I ride it well I've got a gift in my underwear We'll share at the wedding bell".
    • Averted in Up Into The Pear Tree, when young Pyrrhus chides his lord for brazenly kissing his lady in public. In The Decameron, the original source, they weren't just kissing.
  • The Good King: I Follow My King is about one such King and why the singer follows him.
  • The High Queen: Along with The Good King, the leaders the listener is encouraged to acknowledge in Bow To The Crown. Guinevere describes herself as this in Queens of Avalon.
  • Lady of War: The main character in One Of Us, who becomes an accomplished fighter in the SCA.
  • Law of Inverse Fertility: "Changeling Child" concerns a couple who wanted a child for twelve years, but the wife can't have one. Driven to desperation, she bargains with the fairies to give her one, which turns out badly.
  • Literal-Minded: Either out of ignorance or malice, the fairies give an infertile woman a changeling baby... who never ages, as a babe was what she asked for.
  • The Middle Ages: A main source of inspiration for Geather's songs, including the "Current Middle Ages", aka the Society for Creative Anachronism.
  • Minimalist Cast: The musical Queens of Avalon has S.J. Tucker and Heather as Guinevere and Morgana, with others being talked about but never seen.
  • No Pronunciation Guide: "Culhwch and Olwen" mispronounces Culhwch's name as something like "cul-uch" rather than "kill-hooch" (with the ch in both cases sounding like the ch in "loch"."
  • "Not Making This Up" Disclaimer: "These are the actual medieval lyrics, I didn't make this up" for a radar-dodging lyric in Martin Said To His Man during public performances.
  • Omniglot: Heather sings in English, French, Gaelic, Latin, German, and even Wyandot.
  • Perfectly Arranged Marriage: What the narrator of "As I Am" is hoping for.
    "Don't take me out of duty, don't take me out of pride
    Just take me if the man you see is one you'd stand beside
    I'm offering an open heart, I'm asking for your hand
    And I only ask you take me, you take me as I am..."
  • Roguish Poacher: The Poachers is about a band of these in the time of William the Conqueror. They aren't evil men, but Robin Hood-esque types just trying to get by under the overlordship of a new and more tyrannical lord than King Harold.
  • Selkies and Wereseals: The Maiden and the Selkie is about a human girl (whose great-grandmother is implied to be a selkie) and a "Seal-Lord" selkie who wants her for his bride.
  • Sadly Mythtaken: Culhwch and Olwen refers to Modron as Mabon's father. Modron is his mother, with his father being uncertain, though people think that his father's name was Mellt (blending him with another Mabon mentioned in Arthurian mythology.)
  • Speak of the Devil: "Black Fox". A fox hunter frustrated with the lack of quarry remarks that he would chase the Devil himself if he were there, with predictable results.
  • Tyke-Bomb: Mordred's Lullaby is about Morgan turning Mordred into one.
  • Wandering Minstrel: Troubador is about one of these. It is implied that the titular harpist has died.
  • Warrior Prince: The Prince described in True And Destined Prince is clearly one of these.
  • Yank the Dog's Chain: "Changeling Child" tells about a childless woman who goes to the faeries to ask for a baby. After a long night's bargaining, she comes home with one, to great joy from her and her husband — only for them to find that their "son" will never grow beyond babyhood. Even in death, the mother still tends the changeling.


Example of: