I Went to the Market

Conductor Notes:

Here is another gem of an arrangement by Montreal ‘s Donald Patriquin of a French-Canadian folk song. This is the story of a young boy who arrives at market with his basket of apples to sell. The first girl he meets is a lawyer’s daughter, who only deigns to notice him long enough to “buy” two dozen apples without paying for them. The boy is philosophical in the end, but disappointed that she is so far out of his league. With its trademark extroverted, demanding piano accompaniment and lively tempo, Patriquin’s I Went to the Market has been performed by many children’s, youth and women’s choirs in recent years. Some of the appeal of this particular work is probably that it is more in English than in French, so not as much rehearsal time is needed on words. Conductors who are not familiar with colloquial French pronunciation are strongly encouraged to find someone to help them put what look like so many sounds into one syllable!

Composer / Arranger Notes:

I do not have a great deal to say about I Went To The Market except that it is the ‘finale’ of World Music Suite One, a suite of 6 songs from around the world, commissioned by the Toronto Children’s Chorus in celebration of its Twentieth Anniversary. I chose this song for a few reasons. It is a vibrant song in its own right. It is an example of a small number of bilingual Canadian folksongs that reflect the harmony normally enjoyed by members of the two ‘founding nations’ and tells of how a farmer, finding himself smitten by love, is duped out of a few dozen apples by the daughter of a lawyer. So, it is also humorous. It is ‘climactic’ and as it is the ‘finale’ of World Music Suite it also makes a nice ending to a concert, or a portion of it. I Went To The Market is available as an SATB arrangement and so the piece may be sung by a massed choir in which SSA and SATB choruses participate. (Has anyone compiled a list of pieces available for such performance?!) It has an interesting and challenging piano accompaniment, to which may be added all or any of the optional instruments: clarinet (or flute or oboe or violin) Cello, Horn and Woodblock. I believe it originated in that most bilingual of provinces, New Bunswick. It is published by earthsongs.

References:

This lists any discs, concerts or collections where this piece is included.

Collections:

Concerts:

Text:

I went to the market; mon pĀ“tit panier sous mon bras; (my little basket in hand)

The first girl I met was la fill’ d’un avocat. (was the lawyer’s daughter)

Refrain

I love you, vous n’m’entendez guerre, I love you, vous n’m’entendez pas.

(you hardly hear me – you don’t hear me at all)

The first girl I met was la fill’ d’un avocat.

‘Monsieu’ what’av you got dans ce beau p’tit panier la?”

(in that lovely little basket?)

Refrain

” Monsieu’ what ‘av you got dans ce beau p’tit panier la?”

“I’ve got some apples n’m’en acheteriez vous pas?”

(won’t you buy some from me?)

Refrain

“I’ve got some apples n’m’en acheteriez vous pas?”

“Oh! Give me two dozens, pis l’bon homm’ te paiera ca”

(and the guy will pay you)

Refrain

“Oh! Give me two dozens, pis l’bon homm’ te paiera ca”

I gave her two dozens mai l’bon homm’ y payait pas –

(but the guy did not pay)

Refrain

Such is the business avec la fill’ d’un avocat!!!

(with the lawyer’s daughter)

Refrain