Mudcat Café message #3335021 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #90963   Message #3335021
Posted By: GUEST,Suibhne Astray
07-Apr-12 - 02:21 PM
Thread Name: Origins: Fakenham Fair
Subject: RE: Origins: Fakenham Fair
Why do you need to describe those who try to help you out with that as Separatist Traddies (06 Apr 12 - 08:20 PM), which I presume from context is meant as a pejorative.

Let me explain. Whilst a lover of the general idiom of English Traditional Song in the classic sense, I'm not at all convinced of many of the working theories / assumptions surrounding it. In the current instance, I'm broadly agreeing with pretty much everything that's been said, whilst suggesting that the song is rooted in the cultural context of its time, i.e. the creation of someone familiar with the various idioms of early 20th century popular song be it Music Hall, Broadside survivals or you're actual 100% bona-fide Traditional Song, which, as I say, does not, and never has, exist in a vacuum.

I think the song is exceedingly self-conscious

In one way it certainly is, but not with respect of general folksiness, which is one of the reasons it appeals as a piece of honest-to-goodness vernacular writing, rather than a 'fakesong' per se. If I found it in a Broadside I wouldn't be surprised; it has that sort of hackneyed feel about it. As I say, it reads like that, but it sings as something quite natural, probably because it was written to the tune. I'm not suggesting the song is old as such, but the mind of the song seems to know what it's doing - it's concise, simple, to the point, and as such it's first-person narrative seems very real somehow.