Rudolph The Rednosed Reindeer


The surprises keep coming. Just when I was getting ready for the familiar, cheesy jolly-along, this! As Jon explains, “Possibly the finest example of ‘one song to the tune of another’ ever devised – credit must go to BACCApella (from Bacca Pipes Folk Club). Fay has sung with them for many years and I have started tagging along more recently.” Rudolph given an almost baroque, round setting to the tune Northfield from The Sacred Harp. Interestingly the Keighley Folk Club as was, was re-christened The Famous  Bacca Pipes Folk Club (on account of its crossed church warden’s logo by, ‘a designer who could sing a bit called Peter Bellamy.’ You can link to the club’s history here. And as I say, the surprises keep coming.

You can buy the December digital album now from all good download stores.


48 Responses to “Rudolph The Rednosed Reindeer”

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Derek Webster. Derek Webster said: RT @folksongaday: Latest Post: : Rudolph The Rednosed Reindeer […]

  2. Jane Ramsden says:

    Oh, a seriously big improvement on the ordinary tune! What a delight! I was just getting carolled out, but this one has been a real treat! You have chosen well, Glasshopper!

    I’m sure you know really and it’s just a typo, but it is ‘Keighley’, not ‘Keighly’. And for those not from “round ‘ere”, it’s not pronounced like Kylie Minogue, or Keeley Hawes, but Keith-ley. Fay and Jon, you will both know that. There’s a song on Tim Hart & Maddy Prior’s Heydays where it’s annoyingly sung incorrectly. Think it must be The Dalesman’s Litany, which I like apart from that. Bacca Pipes, just down the road from me… if I weren’t too scaredy cat to sing alonga…

  3. Jane Bird says:

    Brilliant 😀

  4. muzza says:

    A jolly bit of excellent, enjoyable Baccapella but it just goes to show how shallow the friendship of some reindeers can be! Rudolph should have told them to jingle off!

  5. Nick Passmore says:


  6. SRD says:

    Love it. Shades of Brian Cope’s version of ‘Jilted John’.

  7. muzza says:

    Hey you fellows, as a complement to AFSAD..check out Simon’s (he of the grey beard)Advent songs on

  8. John Bryson says:

    Love it – completely different and so well sung

  9. Shelley says:

    Fabulous! We heard Baccapella do this a few weeks ago and couldn’t believe our ears!

  10. Kit Bailey says:

    I actually can’t stop listening to this!

  11. Karen Russell says:

    That’s cheered me up no end. Feeling very off colour this morning so just what I needed!!! THANK YOU and a very Merry Christmas to you all.

  12. Katie says:

    Another gem! Have bought the December album already and am looking forward to playing it to the rest of my family, who haven’t got the folk bug yet, they’re in for a treat!

  13. Mike New says:

    another great! who are all the other people with Jon. Their names should be in lights also. Keep them coming.

  14. Simon says:

    Muzza thanks for the plug a new post about it is overdue and like I said thanks for keeping me company….

    I’m glad you’ve all enjoyed this it made me laugh out loud. Apologies for the typo, now corrected (thanks Jane.) As penance I’ll never be rude about Geoff Boycott again! Well…

  15. Simon says:

    Mike the chorus was introduced back here on 2nd of December.

  16. Mike New says:

    Simon thanks for that I should have been more alert.

  17. John Burton says:

    The group Crucible, of whom three are involved in the chorus (unless you include Lucy as well) taught Northfield at the Goderich Celtic College one year. I still have the music with a notation that “You can sing Rudolph to this tune” Until now I ha never heard the whole thing though. Maybe it’s one we should “Borrow”

  18. Joel Griffiths says:

    A delight to hear our Rudolph slowed down a little and sung beautifully. Baroque indeed. We normally race through it as if someone is standing on the accelerator. Any comment I make here is not official Baccappella policy but is my own opinion.

  19. […] the already known. I would highly recommend his waltz timing of ‘Jingle Bells’ and this group a’cappella version of ‘Rudolf the Rednosed Reindeer’. Happy […]

  20. Maggie says:

    What a wonderful song -thanks

  21. Lenora Rose says:

    As I mentioned in the other comment section, i now have to take back my concern that Jon did this song. Because that tune made it quite quite wonderful. Jon, you’re a miracle.

  22. Rosie says:

    Fantastic. To think that I never liked this song before and now I want to play it all the time!

  23. Andy says:

    I LOVE this! Thank you so much for bringing such joy into my life!

  24. Martha says:

    Very well-sung! I hadn’t realized that Rudolph went with 155 (Northfield), though I know it goes with 186 (Sherburne). But I think it goes with 155 better now that I’ve heard it.

    I’d like to hear an album of you singing shape note songs in their original versions. 😉

  25. Philomena Bloggs says:

    Marvellous stuff- I do hope Tim Eriksen gets to hear this!

  26. Lyn Dearborn says:

    It’s cold, rainy, lonely Xmas day, waiting for Children to call, but this song almost made
    me imagine a cheery fire at Grandma’s house after 8 hours on the train, with Grandma’s lovely voice, & cousins searching for hidden candy. I really miss good harmony singing!

  27. elfpix says:

    God help us all when Northfield gets sucked into Xmas junk.

    Wonderful, nay unto priceless! Thank you so very much.

  28. John Biggs (Welsh Marches) says:

    Marvellous !!!! ” Ah”, I hear someone say, “but is it really folk music ?” I dare anyone to fire up that debate again, over Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer.

  29. Jane Ramsden says:

    Yup, very much enjoy well-known songs sung to equally-familiar tunes not their own, so to speak. Far better than setting a traditional song to some inferior modernity!

    “Ain’t Got Far To Go” now to Christmas Day! For something completely different, try the appropriately-named Harry Bird and the Rubber Wellies:

  30. Peter Walsh says:

    That was wonderful from you BACCAs (you have better voices than your outer space cousin CHEW…hahaha!).
    Also wonderful was Janie’s link. Thanks Ted! And also for buying me the Rubber Wellies CD last year… what a gal.

  31. Diana says:

    A surprise indeed! Very jolly though, enjoyed the choral work immensely.

    Peter I am sorry to say I missed your alter ego one B. W. on television on Saturday but believe I have the DVD somewhere, so all is not lost.

  32. Peter Walsh says:

    @ ‘Daina’, I didn’t know that Die Hard was on! The only Bruce that I knew was on telly that day, was Sir Bruce F (at my local ballroom…). Of course my Saturday night was spent in a darkened room listening to Sandy Denny – I wonder who had more fun…

  33. Daina says:

    Peter you without a doubt. Still a shame you missed Bruce, but I expect like everything else on the telly it will be repeated. As for the other Bruce the least said the better.

  34. Simon says:

    Jane thanks so much for that link, the video and the song are both beautiful.

  35. Diana aka Daina says:

    LInda I am sorry that Colin has to be off work for 6 long weeks before he has a review. Lets hope he gets the all clear at the end. You can’t do very much with a thumb out of action. I like my new name but don’t quite know how to pronounce it.

    Pleased to see that Colin is taking an interest in the songs and comments on AFSAD and it is helping to ease the boredom whilst he is incapacitated.

    Have you hid the Xmas presents safely? He did find the plum pudding after all.

  36. John Biggs (Welsh Marches) says:

    Jane, thank you for the link, I keep going back and playing it again.

  37. Jane Ramsden says:

    Glad y’all enjoyed the link. I have more in mind when I get roundtuit!

    Just listening to Jon, Bellowhead and everyone else who took part in last year’s BBC Christmas Folk Session. Quite surreal, being on here, and that going on on the telly! Just wrapped the last of the Christmas presents – yeh! Can’t go to bed without doing the cat litter though – doh!

  38. Peter Walsh says:

    Just rewatched it mesen Janie; great version of Mistletoe Bough by Bellowhead! Everyone made a real effort to dress for the occassion too. Good to see Ted has BBC4!

  39. Muzza+414days (NW Surrey-UK) says:

    Good old Rudolph……..and here is fairy Jan who is a regular contributor to AFSAD……keeping the traditions alive

  40. Diana says:

    Such a lovely change from the accepted song. Enjoyed it and the choral work was excellent.

  41. Jan says:

    Have just sat down after spending the day slaving over a hot stove Christmas cooking -phew! Thanks, Muzza, for adding the fairy for me. I hope it raises a chuckle or two, and a very merry Christmas from me to one and all!

  42. Brad says:

    Carole and I sang this fugued for two voices at an annual Christams Eve gathering of singers. Several Shape Note singers pleasantly surprised. The gathering decided this to be adopted as a standard from now on as it is such uplifting fun to sing.

  43. Old Muzza(NW Surrey.UK says:

    Lovely to see Fairy Jan and Fairy Nuff doing their stuff again…glad the vid is posted here

  44. […] choral arrangements of carols like “When Shepherds Watched Their Flocks by Night.” He included it on Dec. 22, 2014, in a yearlong project called A Folk Song A […]

  45. Old Muzza (NW Surrey-UK) says:

    Jan……Are you still out there performing !

  46. OldMuzza(NWSurrey UK) says:

    Oh Jan…..ref video above…..what a joy that we can revisit your forgettful fairy every year.
    Hope all AFSADers are keeping safe and well…Canada and USA due for a big storm with frighteningly low temperatures….let’s hope we just have to put up with the rain in the UK and it doesn’t lurch across the Atlantic.

  47. OldMuzza(NW Surrey UK)) says:

    Wey hey…great to see Jan the fairy again….ohhhhhh
    I can resist no longer:-
    Did you know that there was Bruno the brown nosed reindeer….he was in harness immediately behind Rudolph but couldn’t stop as quickly!!
    Sorry Daina…you’d definitely have had something to say about that!

  48. OldMuzza(NW Surrey UK)) says:

    Drat….forgot to wish you all Happy Winter Solstice…..We are halfway through the woods and now on our way out and heading for Spring and Summer!!…yeah!

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