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Marje Nineteenth-Century Folk Songs (42) RE: Nineteenth-Century Folk Songs 16 Aug 15

Oh, I agree that a new song can't immediately be a folk song, but it may become one in time, and I know some of the songwriters I mentioned are more than happy for the "folk process" to be applied to their works, with or without payment.

It's a bit unrealistic,though, to expect (say) fishermen or rail workers to absorb the songs they have inspired. It's a nice idea, but the sad fact is that working people very rarely sing during, or about, their work nowadays. I know that Dave Webber's May Day song is sung at Padstow and is sometimes claimed by the Cornish as their own, which is close to what MacColl hoped for, but in most cases I think we'll have to make do with the songs being sung by an assortment of people from various walks of life who find something in the songs that they can relate to, albeit indirectly. This has always happened - you don't have to be a murderer to enjoy a murder ballad.

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