Mudcat Café message #3343879 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #22617   Message #3343879
Posted By: Jim Carroll
27-Apr-12 - 04:02 AM
Thread Name: Origin: High Germany
Subject: RE: Origin: High Germany
'English traditional song as collected by the likes of Sharp...."
You are either not reading what I have written or are deliberately misrepresenting my point - which was in response to your "English working people people were too busy earning a living to make songs themselves"
My point was that there are many examples of working people doing exactly that - the hardship of their lives being one of the reasons why they made songs (among others).
"Some of your points I feel I've already answered"
You have answered none of them; you have attempted to explain away some of the flaws of your hypothesis with top-of-the-head excuses. Most you have totally ignored - poor grasp of and attitude to literacy (where it existed), the contrast with knowledge we have of Irish and Scots oral tradition of song making and that of rural England, on-the-spot opinions of Hindley, Walton, Maidment, et-al, that these were songs made by country people and communities, Ms Laidlaw's statement that writing the songs down killed them off rather than perpetuated them, the credibility gap in your claim of being able to trace back so many traditional songs to broadside origins when you have virtually no examples to do so prior to the beginning of the 20th century.............
The description you have been given of illiterate song sellers reciting traditional songs to the printer in order to sell them.... and many more points you appear to have no answer for really need dealing with before your theory can be taken seriously.
I'm not sure where the 'flowery language' comes into all of this, surely the contrast of the overblown language of the broadsides and the rounded singability of the oral examples suggest that it is extremely unlikely of the latter developing from the former.
Take the song in question - High Germany - and contrast the chunky version you produced with those found in the oral tradition - suggestion enough for me of a "hack" taking an existing piece which reflects the stark realities of army life and its camp-followers, and re-making it into something else.
"You continue to misquote me"
I have not at any time misrepresented your argument, on the contrary, it is you and your "Merrie England" and "whistling ploughboys" cliches who has distorted mine - apparently to cover up the fact that your arguments are based on (as you first described way back) "a gut reaction" rather than the hard evidence you would need to prove that English people were recipients rather than makers of the song that reflected their lives and conditions so realistically ad passionately.
Your extending this to include tales, music, customs, lore, etc. (and your failure to qualify such a suggestion) blows the idea totally out of the water for me.
You stick with your "gut reaction" - I'll settle for my hard evidence, gained partially by having spent a long time with traditional singers (some from a still-living tradition) and questioning them on the relationship and function of their songs to their everyday lives.
Jim Carroll