Dan Dutton’s Ballad Project

Welcome to the ballad project! I am a painter and ballad singer living in Kentucky, USA. This site has words and images related to some of the ballads that I like to sing.

The link below "ballad image index" includes paintings of scenes described in 36 ballads. The list of ballad titles below click to individual pages with lyrics, images, and some thoughts about those particular ballads.

This site is a sketchbook of sorts for Ballads of the Barefoot Mind... performances of ballads (visual or sonic), discussions, and who knows what else. For information, or if you have comments: Email: dand31@webtv.net

About the music: I have made recordings of the ballads listed on this site, and I will be happy to share them with you. Email for information. (This is not a commercial site, so I cannot list the modest cost of the CDs here!) The CDs are beautifully recorded by Jody Kirkpatrick, a long-time collaborator...we print everything ourselves for individual requests.



The Ballads:

click name for lyrics and discussion




About the Paintings:

The paintings of ballad scenes are from a set of 12. I began the set early in the 90s...painting three before the demands of "The Secret Commonwealth" opera project diverted my attention and time. In 2003, Steve Wilson and Laura Lee Brown encouraged me to continue work on the ballad paintings...the images you see here are greatly due to their support. All of the paintings are on linen canvas. The paints are handground oils.

Click here for an complete Image Index for the Ballads of the Barefoot Mind.


Froggy Went A-Courting

oil on canvas, acrylic on wood, 8' x 10', 2004


The Elfin Court: detail from Tam Lin

oil on canvas, 2004


The Ballads: CD

Compact disc recordings by Dan Dutton of the ballads, with accompaniments on guitar, charango, dulcimer, lute and harp, are available. The recordings were made in 2004 by Jody Kirkpatrick in the legendary Chamber of Illusion. Copies of the recordings are made upon request. For details as to how CDs may be aquired, please email the singer at dand31@webtv.net

CD 1 (Red Rose/Green Briar) includes:

True Thomas
Barbara Ellen
Lord Bateman
The Farmer's Curst Wife
The House Carpenter
False Sir John
The Fox
Black Jack Davy
John Henry
Stagger Lee


CD 2 (A Murder of Crows) includes:

Riddles Wisely Expounded
Jimmy Randall
The Two Sisters
Polly Vaugn (The Shooting of His Dear)
Pretty Polly
The Boar Hunter
The Two Crows
Thomas and Ellender
The Frog's Courtship
Babes in the Woods
Usher's Well


CD 3 (Pull, Pick, Pluck)

Lord Lovel
How Came That Blood?
The Cruel Mother
The Holland Handkerchief
Miles Weatherhill
The Selkie
The Merry Golden Tree
The Little Soldier Boy
The Unquiet Grave
Tam Lin