Come Back Stephen

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X:1 T:Come Back Stephen M:2/4 L:1/8 R:Reel B:Elias Howe – Musician’s Omnibus Nos. 6 & 7 (Boston, 1880-1882, p. 594) B: http://ks4.imslp.net/files/imglnks/usimg/c/c7/IMSLP601433-PMLP562790-ONeill_Rare_Medium_M40_M8_v6.7_text.pdf Z:AK/Fiddler’s Companion K:A E/>E/D/>B,/ E/>E/C/>A,/| E/>E/D/>B,/ E/>E/C/>A,/| {^d}[E/e/]>E/D/>B,/ E/>E/C/>A,/| [E/e/]>E/D/>B,/ E/>E/C/>A,/| E/>E/D/>B,/ E/>E/C/>A,/| E/>E/D/>B,/ E/>E/C/>A,/| {^d}[E/e/]>E/D/>B,/ E/>E/C/>A,/| [E/e/]>E/D/>B,/ E/>E/C/>A,/|| ^dBc^A B/c/B|c/>B/A/>F/ Bz/e/|^d/B/c/^A/ B/B/B|F/>B/A/>F/ Ez/e/| ^d/>B/c/>^A/ B/B/B|c/>B/A/>F/ Bz/e/|^d/>B/c/>^A/ B/B/B|c/>B/A/>F/ Ez/e/| A/>c/B/>d/ c/e/~e|A/>c/B/>d/ c/A/~A|A/>c/B/>d/ c/>e/~e|f/>e/d/>B/ B/>A/~A| A/>c/B/>d/ c/e/~e|A/>c/B/>d/ c/A/~A|A/>c/B/>d/ c/>e/~e|f/>e/d/>B/ Az:|]



COME BACK, STEPHEN. AKA - "Come Back Steben." American, Minstrel Air (2/4 time). D Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). "Come Back, Stephen" is an "Ethiopian Melody"--a blackface minstrel skit-song. The composition was credited to performer G. White of White's band of Serenaders, who held forth at the Melodeon, 53 Bowery, New York, according to George Christy's 1854 songbook. However, a version was published some years earlier in Boston, in 1848, as "Come Back Steben, Negro Cavatina as sung by a Kentuckian". The 1848 publication (along with some later ones) includes the extra-musical direction: "To be sung in the imitation of the mew of a Cow, by closing the mouth on the middle note and forming the other against the roof of the mouth." The song was printed in dialect, and begins:

Come back, Stephen! come back!
Come back, Stephen! come back!
Another:-- Oh! oh! I'se a-coming!
Voice Oh! oh! I'se a-coming!

It can be found in playbills of the Ethiopian Serenaders (1849), Rainer and Donaldson's Minstrels (1851) and White's Serenader's (1852).


Additional notes



Printed sources : - George Christy (Christy's and White's Ethiopian Melodies), 1854; pp. 43-44. Elias Howe (Musician’s Omnibus Nos. 6 & 7), Boston, 1880-1882; p. 594.






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