CONFESS. AKA and see "Confesse, His Tune," "Court Lady," "Rosamond." English, Country Dance Tune and Air (6/8 time). E Minor (Barnes, Karpeles, Raven, Sharp): D Minor (Chappell). Standard tuning (fiddle). One part (Chappell): ABB (Barnes, Sharp): AABB (Karpeles, Raven). The ballad was first published in Playford's English Dancing Master of 1651 and was retained in the long-running series through the 10th edition of 1698, after which it was dropped. The title "Court Lady" first appeared as an alternate title in the 4th edition of 1670, and remained with the main title until the melody was dropped. "Confesse, His Tune," another alternate title, is similar to "Mr. Basse, His Tune," and refers to French dancing master Nicholas Confesse who was attached to the Jacobean court. He choreographed The Lords Masque in 1613, staged as part of the wedding celebration of the Earl of Somerset, King James's favorite, and other masques, as well as taught dancing to the court. He is associated with a courante popular among lutenists called Confesse's courante, which he may or may not have composed (he may simply have delivered the steps).
Printed sources: Barnes (English Country Dance Tunes), 1986. Chappell (Popular Music of the Olden Times), vol. 1, 1859; p. 165. Karpeles & Schofield (A Selection of 100 English Folk Dance Airs), 1951; p. 15. Raven (English Country Dance Tunes), 1984; p. 21 & p. 38 (the latter is a facsimile copy of the Playford original). Sharp (Country Dance Tunes), 1994; p. 32.
X:1 T:Confesse T:Confesse, or the Court Lady M:6/8 L:1/8 B:Chappell - Popular Music of the Olden Times (1859) S:Dancing Master, 1650 Z:AK/Fiddler's Companion K:Dmin D | D2E F2G | A2A A3 | B3A2A | d2d ^c2D | D2E F2G | A2A A3 | B3 A2A | d2d ^c2A | e2c f2d | ec2 A2=B | cA2 ^G2A | A^G2 A2A | F2G A>BA | BA2 G3 | A2d ^c2d | e^c2 d2 ||