Composed in 2012, the two pieces in Sadie Harrison’s Heartoutbursts! take their inspiration from traditional English folk.
'...in the folk-song there is to be found the complete history of a people, recorded by the race itself, through the heartoutbursts of its healthiest output. It is a history compiled with deeper feeling and more understanding than can be found among the dates and data of thegreatest historian...'(Percy Grainger 1922)
In 1905, Joseph Taylor won a Lincolnshire folksong competition with his rendition of Brigg Fair, a song he had learnt from a gypsy. Australian composer Percy Grainger subsequently published a setting in his Lincolnshire Posy, with Delius using the tune in his rhapsody, Brigg Fair. Both composers sought to vivify the tradition of English folksong, celebrating not only the ancient tunes and words but also the qualities of particular folksingers like Joseph Taylor.
Harrison’s own Australian Heartoutbursts! follow unashamedly in the Grainger tradition with echoes of the original folktunes underpinning both songs Brigg Fair and The Seeds of Love. Although different in character, both texts use similar images as analogies for the joys and despairing associated with love - the lark and violet symbolize youth, the lily as virginity, the red rose as true love, and the willow representing falsehood and abandonment.