Mudcat Café message #2482679 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #115776   Message #2482679
Posted By: Folkiedave
02-Nov-08 - 03:56 PM
Thread Name: While Shepherds Watched/Ilkley Moor
Subject: RE: While Shepherds Watched/Ilkley Moor
My first experience of the Sheffield carols as they are known was about 1974 and I was at a pub which is no longer a "carolling hole" where they sang impromptu. A man gave me a set of words done on a "Gestetner" machine - in colour.

Then I picked up a few similar copies which people gave out at Dungworth. I picked another up at Worrall.

Then I went to Dungworth and got a number of various versions of the carols - but by that time I knew most of the words. The other copies of the words came into my hands and then (as I remember) the "red book" was published with the help of Whitbread Brewery in the Community scheme. The "red book" was called "Jack Goodison's collection of Local and Traditional Carols". It was dedicated to his wife who died in 1991 and was published in July (??!!) 1992.

I also have a copy of the carols done by Loxley Silver Methodist Band - two copies of carols by Bradfield Choral Society and another by Bradfield Evening Instute Choral Society.

My first "Blue Book" was published by Worral Male Voice Choir dates from 1982 - this was repeated in 2003. This is the one most people use nowadays. It includes 15 tunes for "While Shepherds".

The "red book" has 12 tunes to "WSWTFBN"; perhaps not many would know that there are also seven tunes to "Hark the Heralds Angels Sing". I can think of three tunes it is actually sung to.

Some of the early books have "strange" songs in them. E.G. "Miners Dream of Home". The reason for this (I think) is simple - on Boxing day there is also a "sing" but this is a bit "free and easy" and people sing/sang their party piece - one of these was "MDOH" and that is how it came to be in the books. When I first came to live in this area of Sheffield they still sang in one of the pubs at Sunday lunch-time and ended with songs like that.