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EFDSS cock-up

Spleen Cringe 28 Jan 10 - 02:02 PM
Jack Blandiver 28 Jan 10 - 04:12 PM
Ruth Archer 28 Jan 10 - 04:35 PM
Crow Sister (off with the fairies) 29 Jan 10 - 05:22 AM
Ruth Archer 29 Jan 10 - 05:46 AM
Crow Sister (off with the fairies) 29 Jan 10 - 06:44 AM
Jack Blandiver 29 Jan 10 - 07:21 AM
Jack Blandiver 29 Jan 10 - 07:33 AM
Ruth Archer 29 Jan 10 - 07:36 AM
GUEST,The Shambles 29 Jan 10 - 07:44 AM
Crow Sister (off with the fairies) 29 Jan 10 - 08:04 AM
Jack Blandiver 29 Jan 10 - 08:54 AM
Ruth Archer 29 Jan 10 - 09:08 AM
RTim 29 Jan 10 - 09:24 AM
Crow Sister (off with the fairies) 29 Jan 10 - 11:23 AM
Crow Sister (off with the fairies) 29 Jan 10 - 12:47 PM
Howard Jones 29 Jan 10 - 02:03 PM
Crow Sister (off with the fairies) 29 Jan 10 - 02:21 PM
Crow Sister (off with the fairies) 29 Jan 10 - 02:27 PM
Jack Blandiver 29 Jan 10 - 02:47 PM
Jack Blandiver 29 Jan 10 - 03:35 PM
Richard Bridge 29 Jan 10 - 03:58 PM
Spleen Cringe 29 Jan 10 - 04:03 PM
Spleen Cringe 29 Jan 10 - 04:14 PM
Jack Blandiver 29 Jan 10 - 04:21 PM
GUEST,The Shambles 29 Jan 10 - 04:36 PM
Richard Bridge 29 Jan 10 - 07:04 PM
Jack Blandiver 30 Jan 10 - 05:13 AM
Folkiedave 30 Jan 10 - 05:42 AM
Folkiedave 30 Jan 10 - 05:45 AM
stallion 30 Jan 10 - 05:51 AM
Folkiedave 30 Jan 10 - 06:12 AM
Andy Jackson 30 Jan 10 - 06:22 AM
EnglishFolkfan 30 Jan 10 - 08:24 AM
Ruth Archer 30 Jan 10 - 09:05 AM
Ruth Archer 31 Jan 10 - 09:01 AM
Howard Jones 31 Jan 10 - 09:32 AM
Brian Peters 31 Jan 10 - 10:17 AM
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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Spleen Cringe
Date: 28 Jan 10 - 02:02 PM

Diane: You clearly haven't seen the man's record collection...


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 28 Jan 10 - 04:12 PM

...which includes much of VOTP, like the one featured in THIS little tableau, which is an especial favourite. However, this stuff is our national heritage and an archive of essential cultural documents. To make further Commercial Folk Product out of it, is not only flogging a dead horse, but also taking the piss somewhat. At least with The Fall re-issues you get a second disk of crucial extras for considerably less than you pay for a VOTP volume.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 28 Jan 10 - 04:35 PM

I'm not sure how the pin barrel harp issue has become conflated with the idea of putting the sound archive on line. The successful funding for one was not a preclusion of funding the other. My understanding is that, at the time that the funding was initially achieved for the sculpture and the other improvements, EFDSS had a fund-raiser working on their behalf to develop and submit a number of different applications to different funders. Some were successful; some were not. The sculpture project is one that was. This doesn't mean that the society prioritised the sculpture project over the sound library, it means that the sculpture project happened to be successful in achieving funding.

"Anyhoo, given what we know of the Traditional Singers, in what sense I wonder are these people ordinary? Which presumably means the collectors were somehow extraordinary - hmmmm..."

That is not what John implied.

At the end of the day, I'm sure we'd all like to see the sound archive on-line with open access (you'll note that the recently digitised collections are available to anyone, not just members of the Society). The project will cost a lot of money and take a lot of time. I am sure EFDSS would be happy to receive the donations of all those who are keen to benefit from this project; I presume they are already supporting such initiatives through their EFDSS membership.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Crow Sister (off with the fairies)
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 05:22 AM

"all those who are keen to benefit from this project;"

It's not something that would greatly benefit me personally *now*, as a non-folkie I was motivated enough to find other routes - however such an initiative would have made my initial learning curve much smoother. As for *people at large* however, I'm sure it could help vastly in helping to make other non-folkies aware of the existance traditional song. Traditional song is a very niche interest, itself contained within the niche interest of folk music. If you don't dig folk music as a commercial genre, you are unlikely to know anything of English traditional song.

It's a great pity that virtually the only people who even know of its existance, are middle-class Guardian reading professionals of a certain age. As I said to one of my early corespondants "I didn't even know this stuff existed, is there something wrong with this picture?" On another thread recently, a couple of music bloggers asked for constructive suggestions about how the folk community could begin collectively working on making sound archives publicly available online. Supportive posts came from Jim Carroll and a couple of others, but otherwise I watched with some interest the amount of energy that was put into rejecting these young enthusiastic bloggers ideas from several of the posters here. If the BNP, as the new self-styled folk-lovin' "voice of the people" hasn't already cottoned onto some of this as potential political propaganda, you can bet they soon will. I can easily imagine Lizzie Cornish stylee tirades about the exclusive world of middle-class academic Traddies busy jealously keeping the musical heritage of the ordinary working people to themselves, coming out of Nick Griffins mouth.

As for actively contributing to such an initiative myself, absolutely yes - I think making the songs of 'the people' readily available to 'the people', would be a project of immense collective cultural worth. And certainly one that far outstrips any possible value in tarting up the gardens of C# house - but I guess that's an issue to be taken up with those individuals who decide what projects are worth funding with public money.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 05:46 AM

"And certainly one that far outstrips any possible value in tarting up the gardens of C# house - but I guess that's an issue to be taken up with those individuals who decide what projects are worth funding with public money."

Indeed. At a presentation last week at the House of Commons about the new research (by Trish Winter and Simon Keegan-Phipps of the University of Sunderland) into folk music and representations of Englishness, I took the opportunity, given the nature of the event, to ask some questions of MPs from the All-Party Folk Committee about putting folk traditions more at the heart of England's cultural life and identity. I mentioned the fact that Ireland and Scotland value their folk heritage far more highly, but it has taken their own revivals and substantial government investment to make this happen. The response was a load of waffle from MPs who are afraid to have this conversation, because they are afraid to talk about what being English might mean in the context of a multi-cultural society. I made it clear that I myself am an immigrant and therefore not approaching this subject from a right-wing nationalist perspective, but it became immediately clear that issues of Englishness, identity and heritage, and the place of folk in that dialogue, was something to be skirted around rather than explored.

While this is the case, I cannot see any public funder acknowledging how important these archives are, and what a fundamental place they have in the heritage of this country. And things that are not valued rarely receive large-scale public funding.

EFDSS recently attained RFO status from the Arts Council - but the agenda for delivery is very much dictated by the Arts Council itself, and is led by a set of pre-ordained priorities for activity. Moreover, the level of funding is paltry when compared to similar organisations in Ireland or Scotland. EFDSS may be finally on the ladder, but in terms of gaining real recognition and a status that is appropriate to the treasures that the Society conserves and wishes very much to disseminate, there is a long way to go.


With regard to "tarting up the gardens", a substantial amount of the funding was used for disabled access provision, as Diane says.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Crow Sister (off with the fairies)
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 06:44 AM

"I mentioned the fact that Ireland and Scotland value their folk heritage far more highly, but it has taken their own revivals and substantial government investment to make this happen. The response was a load of waffle from MPs who are afraid to have this conversation, because they are afraid to talk about what being English might mean in the context of a multi-cultural society."

Sobering and worrying too - it's precisely this kind of spineless political shuffling around anything 'English' that plays right into the hands of hard right-wing nationalists..

Anyway, thanks for your considered response.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 07:21 AM

All-Party Folk Committee about putting folk traditions more at the heart of England's cultural life and identity.

That has to be the most depressing thing I've ever read on Mudcat. Folk Traditions ARE the heart of England's cultural life and identity - just not the sort of Folk Traditions that an All-Party Folk Commitee (!) are likely to recognise as being Folk Traditions. Looks like we're on the brink of a WAV-like State Funded Volkism here, where nothing can be truly Folk unless sanctioned by the APFC.

Meanwhile, out here in the real world, life, and folk (music, song, lore, tales, customs, traditions etc. etc.) quite happily endures as a consequence of simply living and breathing.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 07:33 AM

it's precisely this kind of spineless political shuffling around anything 'English' that plays right into the hands of hard right-wing nationalists..

Englishness will always be the reserve of Hard Right-Wing Nationalists, which is why the majority of English people (whatever their cultural or ethnic background) don't even give the matter a second thought. They're too busy getting on with it to be bothered about the defining of it, much less the funding of it, or even an All-Party Folk Committee who seek to put folk traditions more at the heart of England's cultural life and identity.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 07:36 AM

...for a minority of the populace that's true. Sweeney. Crowsister wants to know why more people don't know about the EFDSS sound archive and why they don't have access to it. There are two issues here: funding and status. Even if you put the sound archive on line, for free, right now, 95% people in England would not suddenly be on their knees thanking god for this wonderful treasure laid before them - they'd carry on watching X Factor and eating their Pringles (presumably this is the sort of enduring folk activity you're referring to, Sweeney?).

For this aspect of our national heritage to be celebrated, it needs to be valued. More visibility would help, and this could be achieved through an acknowledgement from the government that this stuff matters and deserves recognition. Look at the centre for Irish traditional music that was opened in Dublin a few years ago, with state-of-the-art conservation facilities and great accessibility. It was a multi-million pound project. The Irish Minister for Culture attended the opening. That's because their musical heritage is important to the Irish. English traditional heritage continues to be a parochial irrelevance or, at worst, an embarrassment. Folk may "endure", but for most people in England it doesn't even exist.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: GUEST,The Shambles
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 07:44 AM

Meanwhile, out here in the real world, life, and folk (music, song, lore, tales, customs, traditions etc. etc.) quite happily endures as a consequence of simply living and breathing.

If only that were true. The participants who try to carry on such traditions may be quite happy but these only just endure despite the best efforts of national and local government to obstruct them by entaglement in official red tape.

Mumming plays need Premises License Entertainment Permission to make them legal and any thing that is provided to enable the public to entertain themselves in music and dancing also needs this permission as an Entertainment Facility. See:

thread.cfm?threadid=126147&messages=80


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Crow Sister (off with the fairies)
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 08:04 AM

"Englishness will always be the reserve of Hard Right-Wing Nationalists, which is why the majority of English people (whatever their cultural or ethnic background) don't even give the matter a second thought. They're too busy getting on with it to be bothered about the defining of it,"

Defining 'Englishness' as a concept isn't of interest to me either and is something of a red herring I think. Actual songs that just happen to be English by the simple matter of being forged here, are what's of interest. The revival inspired a generation of enthusiasts for traditional song, that generation is still breathing just about, but it would be nice if a few more of us were simply aware that this stuff is there.

I was at an alt-music festival a while back and singing some E. Trads to myself while I was working, and this dreadlocked hippy said to me: "Those old Irish songs are amazing, hearing that sent a shiver up my spine!"


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 08:54 AM

English traditional heritage continues to be a parochial irrelevance or, at worst, an embarrassment. Folk may "endure", but for most people in England it doesn't even exist.

Folk, in that sense, is marginal middle-class pastime based on the cultural plundering of material that pretty much ceased to be of any relevance to the culture that spawned it. Hence it was dying out, for all sorts of reasons, and so it was lifted out of its natural context and placed in ossuaries by way of a Revival which is, of course, nothing of the sort. It once sense it remains our common cultural heritage, in another sense it remains totally irrelevant simply because it has been surpassed & replaced by things that are more immediate and more rewarding. It remains heritage - residue - the sort of thing we get in museums, but have no immediate relevance to how we live our lives today. I am working class - I was almost expelled from school back in 1977 for singing Lucy Wan during a smoking session behind the bike-sheds thus freaking out a third year girl. Well I remember producing my precious copy of the PBOEFS in defence - which of course worked because then a lurid tale of incest and murder, became officially sanctioned by RVW. Now if I'd come up with Lucy Wan muself, as someone did once upon a time, I dare say the beak wouldn't have been so lenient. I suppose I realised back then that Folk Song could never be truly subversive, or of any immediate cultural or societal relevance, which was fine by me, but meanwhile, culture goes on, folk culture especially. Thus will it always be, as you say, a parochial irrelevance or, at worst, an embarrassment, whilst the real stuff endures as true folklore because of its revelavance to peoples lives today.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 09:08 AM

That's your opinion, Sweeney, and you have put forward this interpretation on numerous occasions. While you are certainly entitled to it and you always make interesting and thought-provoking points, many people will not agree. I feel that heritage can be active and living. EFDSS exists to help with that process.

For me, the sound archive is "the real stuff", and I would like more people to have access to and awareness of it. I would like the government to acknowledge traditional music and dance (and calendar customs and oral culture) in the same way it recognises stately homes and, more recently, industrial heritage - with status and funding. Admittedly, if more people got their hands on the music and songs they would be open to all sorts of interpretations, and not all of us will like all of them, but I would rather that than traditional music, dance and song be ignored, sneered at and generally swept under the carpet.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: RTim
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 09:24 AM

I am STILL finding the title of this thread completely wrong and misleading.
- Can it be changed!!

Tim Radford


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Crow Sister (off with the fairies)
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 11:23 AM

"For me, the sound archive is "the real stuff", and I would like more people to have access to and awareness of it. I would like the government to acknowledge traditional music and dance ... with status and funding. Admittedly, if more people got their hands on the music and songs they would be open to all sorts of interpretations, ... I would rather that than traditional music, dance and song be ... generally swept under the carpet."

Amen RuthA. Unfortunately, Sweeney's objections regarding the middle-class niche nature of interest in our collective folk heritage, reminds me somewhat of the BM's classic stance regarding the Elgin Marbles which runs a bit like: "Those wogs didn't give a damn about their heritage then, so why should we bestow such precious ancient artifacts upon smelly peasants who are clearly incapable of appreciating them?"

I know full well So'P doesn't think anything like this. But it's a fine line between saying the common man abandoned his traditional culture when the industrial revolution and the X Factor came along, to saying BECAUSE he now doesn't know anything about it, it's not worth offering it back to him to re-discover.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Crow Sister (off with the fairies)
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 12:47 PM

"Folk Traditions ARE the heart of England's cultural life and identity"

There's a bit of semantic confusion here for me, regards the use of the term 'folk', much as I enjoy Karaoke and all.

I am a working-class person, who has (relatively) recently discovered that there exists a working-class cultural heritage of song and music of which I was formerly utterly oblivious.

I have inadvertantly stumbled upon a working-class heritage which is both *theoretically* easily accessable by anyone who can so much as hold a tune, but is nevertheless *pragmatically* innacessable to anyone who doesn't also happen to be a white, middle-aged semi-academic dilettante.

I have a real problem with this.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Howard Jones
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 02:03 PM

Crow Sister, in what way do you find folk music is made "pragmatically inaccessible" to you or to other working-class people? I've always felt that folk clubs and festivals are usually welcoming to anyone who shows an interest in the music - but then I'm white, middle class and middle aged, so perhaps I would. However I've come know people from all backgrounds through folk music, although in most cases I've no idea what class they consider themselves to be.

I do however disagree with the notion that there is some middle-class conspiracy to keep folk music away from the unwashed masses. The working class has twice rejected folk music - once in the early 20th century when the folk tradition was replaced by mass entertainment, and again in the 1960s when, after a brief period in the spotlight when it was taken seriously, it ceased to be part of mainstream popular music and retreated to the folk clubs. If folk music owes its survival to the middle-class collectors of the early 20th century and middle-class audiences of more recent years, it's because the working class has on the whole chosen to ignore it.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Crow Sister (off with the fairies)
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 02:21 PM

"Crow Sister, in what way do you find folk music is made "pragmatically inaccessible" to you or to other working-class people?"

Off the cuff Howard, err nobody I know, even knows that traditional English song exists at all, so that tends to make it rather inaccesable (compared to say Shakespear for exanple). But then not even my middle-class classical & early music 'snob' friends know about it either, so I guess the niche is even tighter than the one I initially offered.. ;-)


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Crow Sister (off with the fairies)
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 02:27 PM

"I do however disagree with the notion that there is some middle-class conspiracy to keep folk music away from the unwashed masses"

No conspiracy of course, simply a cultural trend which by default automatically enables access to the better educated middle-classes and equally disables access to the less well educated working-classes. There is irony here for me here, considering the musically illiterate nature of the oral tradition that these songs were initially harvested from.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 02:47 PM

Revival Folk Music is as relevant to English Culture as model railways are to our transport system or The English Civil War Society to our National Defence. We're dealing with anachronistic hobbyism; an eccentric, charming, curiosity, great fun if you're so inclined, but ultimately just a middle-class fantasy. It is laughable that Nationalists (WAV / BNP etc.) see it as having cultural currency, or actuality, at all.

I don't believe the working-class abandoned anything, just culture moves on, and tastes change accordingly; we keep moving. Whilst the Tradition Songs & Ballads came about in a very different society to our own, they are the product of the same creative forces that create all truly Popular Musics - be it the ballads collected by Francis J Child to the songs written by Ian Curtis and Mark E. Smith. I've explored this idea elsewhere (see HERE) - my conclusion being that all the Holy Cows of the Folk Revival (The 1954 Karpeles Definition, The Folk Process, even Folk Music itself) are fantasies simply because ALL MUSIC is determined by precisely the same creative means respective to the human context of culture, community and, most importantly, individuality.

Folk is a bourgeois fantasy of a working-class culture stripped of individual creativity and seen only in terms of its collectivity and plundered accordingly. In this sense CS's Elgin Marbles analogy holds true - such class condescension is exactly that which justified the evils of colonialism and is evident in Folklore Studies well into the 20th Century. Indeed, much Neo-Paganism is founded on the notion that Folk Custom and Seasonal Ceremony carry symbolic / mystical significances beyond the understanding of the participants, just as Baring-Gould believed the traditional singers couldn't possibly appreciate the significance of what they were singing.

The culture of Traditional English Folk Song was one of creative musical mastery - no different from what happens today, whatever the genre.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 03:35 PM

If folk music owes its survival to the middle-class collectors of the early 20th century and middle-class audiences of more recent years, it's because the working class has on the whole chosen to ignore it.

ROTFLMAO!


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 03:58 PM

Sweeney O'Pibroch, I don't think I've ever known anyone write as much gibberish and nonsense as you. If you are barely comprehensible to someone with an IQ that is well, fairly high, two degrees, and 40 years experience of reading the English legislative tradition and bureaucratese, and indeed has taught at two universities and one college of further education, where the fuck do you get off saying that folk music has been stolen from the working class? If you aren't part of the solution you are part of the problem (paraphrase from the MC5).

It is compete nonsense to say that the transmission of current music is similar to that of the pre-recording era. Nowadays the consumption of popular music is mostly via recording, not via performance (one's own or others') and indeed as far as performance goes the merit is judged by the similarity of the performance to the recorded original.

Your opposition to the learning and study of folk music so that it can be understood and continue to be enjoyed reminds me greatly of the gin-and-Jaguar-belt revolutionaries from Gerards Cross with whom I was somewhat acquainted in the 60s.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Spleen Cringe
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 04:03 PM

I dunno about the rest of the country, but I would hazard that in the North West there are still a fair few older, working class folkies at the clubs and singarounds - often slightly eccentric, mildly obsessive hobbyists. I do fear however - and not just in terms of folk music but also in terms of, for instance, men who create alternative universes in their sheds - that they are a dying breed...

I blame it on the demise of industry, the weakening of the trades unions and the creeping invasion of me-politics into every walk of life. The replacement of the communal by the individual in many ways leaves less room for individuals to thrive and flourish and instead encourages conformity to pre-cast norms and aspirations (that usually revolve around shopping or some other form of mass commerce).

Another thing I like about the art that was created for the C#House garden was that in a strange way it reminded me, in spirit, of my Great Uncle Albert, who was a great example of a garden shed mad inventor (and still drove a motorbike with Auntie Floss in the side car when they were in their 70s...).


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Spleen Cringe
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 04:14 PM

Richard, that first paragraph was a bit odd. I roughly translate it as "You're talking gibberish because I can't understand you and I'm very intelligent. Because of this folk music can't have been stolen from the working classes and by the way, you're part of the problem." Have I missed anything?

Try kicking back and enjoying Suibhne's missives for what they are: the work of a consummate storyteller and obsessive prankster on a mission to provoke debate, discussion and discourse.




Didn't the MC5 get the quote from John Sinclair who got it from the Black Panthers?


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 04:21 PM

Nowadays the consumption of popular music is mostly via recording, not via performance (one's own or others') and indeed as far as performance goes the merit is judged by the similarity of the performance to the recorded original.

Bollox, Richard. Here I must quote myself:

Time was the only available recording media was Human Memory - which comes supplied with a pair of excellent stereo binaural microphones and, as is supposed, near perfect recall especially when used in a (mainly) non-technological culture where people are more creative by default - thus playback is apt to emphasise the idiosyncratic nature of the thing. In terms of sampling and remixing of existing material there is evidence enough of the sort of fluidic mastery I've been arguing for elsewhere with respect of Folk Song. This is the exact same mastery that would have been commonplace in the trades of the time, so it shouldn't surprise us that ordinary people (so-called) were making & singing these songs any more than a so-called ordinary person (such as a Susan Boyle or an Alfie Boe) can capture the hearts of millions today with what is, in essence, a natural born talent defined by the traditions of their respective cultures.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: GUEST,The Shambles
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 04:36 PM

Folk is a bourgeois fantasy of a working-class culture stripped of individual creativity and seen only in terms of its collectivity and plundered accordingly. In this sense CS's Elgin Marbles analogy holds true - such class condescension is exactly that which justified the evils of colonialism and is evident in Folklore Studies well into the 20th Century. Indeed, much Neo-Paganism is founded on the notion that Folk Custom and Seasonal Ceremony carry symbolic / mystical significances beyond the understanding of the participants, just as Baring-Gould believed the traditional singers couldn't possibly appreciate the significance of what they were singing.

I like the cut of your jib, young fellow-me-lad. It probably does hold true in England at least.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 07:04 PM

No, Spleen, it says that if that degree of baffle-gab is needed for Sweeney's "argument" that argument can't have anything to do with anyone or anything other than baffle-gab merchants. Take me to a pub anywhere in the country where the working man, the historical possessor of the music that Sweeney says the baffle-gab merchants stole from that possessor, would have any idea what Sweeney was saying.

It's simply pseud's corner come to life.

As to your onanistic quotation, Sweeney, you make my point. It was not the chattering classes who preserved and evolved folk music. It was ordinary people, not by design, not in specified combination, but by the aggregate effect of their individual decisions and errors.

If it was good vicars and professors who took that notes that preserved that, what's your problem? Better it be noted and available thereafter than not.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 30 Jan 10 - 05:13 AM

It was not the chattering classes who preserved and evolved folk music. It was ordinary people

Precisely what I've been saying, although I'd take issue with the term ordinary people. As I said elsewhere, in my experience of traditional songs & the singers thereof there is nothing in the least bit ordinary about these people. However, it was the Chattering Classes who hatched the concept of Folk Song and its attendant Holy Cows (The 1954 Definition, The Folk Process etc.) in an attempt to prove that this music was the product of the collectivity of a ill-educated impoverished class in which individual creativity was impossible largely on account of that ill-education & impoverishment. To go back to E.P.Thomson: Folklore, in England, is largely a literary record of 18th and 19th century survivals recorded by parsons and by genteel antiquarians regarding them across a gulf of class condescension. The same is true of Folk Song, and remains so to this day, as posts such as yours demonstrate. Meanwhile, the working-classes continue to make great music & sing great songs, just as they always have done. The self-same Tradition that gave us the so-called Folk Songs is alive and well, just the nature of those songs are different simply in terms of genre. Nothing has died, it has only changed, as society has changed, and the experiences of the people with it.   

not by design, not in specified combination, but by the aggregate effect of their individual decisions and errors.

Yes by design; yes in specified combination, yes by individual decision, and maybe even by error too - after all, mistakes often lead to the most wondrous discoveries - but ultimately, by the self-same individual musical mastery that was as much part of working-class culture down the ages as it is today.

*

A private note for Richard's eyes only:

I'm a bit worried by the overall tenor of your posts here, dear boy. Like WAV you justify your outrage with a pointless precis of an wholly irrelevant CV then proceed to tell us how little you know, or even care about for the subject in hand - and all couched with a hostility that is as wearying as it is entirely misplaced. If you've got anything to add here, then by all means do so - but please leave the aggression & insults out of it. I suggest you get together with Folkiedave and find a suitable anger management counsellor to sort out your - er - little problem.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Folkiedave
Date: 30 Jan 10 - 05:42 AM

As I read your posts I wonder if you and Dave Spart are related.

Folklore, in England, is largely a literary record of 18th and 19th century survivals recorded by parsons and by genteel antiquarians regarding them across a gulf of class condescension.

Just because EP Thompson wrote it about Folklore doesn't mean to say it is true about folk song. I am not sure it is even true about folklore since many of the 19th century "survivals" were in fact 19th century "creations".


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Folkiedave
Date: 30 Jan 10 - 05:45 AM

And if Richard and I form a partnership to solve our so-called problem how about you and Lizzie Cornish getting together? You could solve two problems at once that way.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: stallion
Date: 30 Jan 10 - 05:51 AM

Such scholarship!............... Middleclass thieves?..........mmmmmmmmm. My view is that it is art, I personally like impressionist paintings, for most of my formative years that is how I saw the world (got glasses and turned things around!)they do not date, I sketch, I am not very good, but I do it and i bet most of us doodle, not high art grant you. Music is art be whoever and whatever   and where. Artefacts are kept in Museums for public veiw and study, lately museums like Yorvic, Beamish et al are re-creating a flavour, snapshot if you like, of pastimes. My personal veiw of the music I sing albeit much of it written a long time ago is in the here and now i am not trying to recreate some past existance I am out on a night out for a sing and a good time. So purists cock a snook if you like but if you put the music in a museum it will die. Use it, in the here and now it's fun and maybe that's why so many youngsters join in with our session at the Tap because it is about having a good time . Oh and the working class thing is bollocks,the majority of us work to pretend otherwise is you buying into the crap that keeps us all in our place.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Folkiedave
Date: 30 Jan 10 - 06:12 AM

People with an interest in folk song might find thisuseful.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Andy Jackson
Date: 30 Jan 10 - 06:22 AM

My 'ead 'urts. I'm glad I only have to enjoy Folk Music and not have to dissect it!
Now where were we??
I was just sent this clip of THAT MACHINE, and it does it more justice.
Of course the fact that it was built by an ex BBC engineer makes sense now! It takes one to know one and in my experience we all border on slight mechanical madness!

Tear yourself away from the, undoubtedly fascinating, word play above and listen here instead.

The Sharpsichord

Sorry about drifting the thread back on course!!!


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: EnglishFolkfan
Date: 30 Jan 10 - 08:24 AM

English musical eccentricity ~ at it's best

More of the Sharpsichord show:

Megaphone magic
Pin-Barrel Harp with Chris Wood singing 'The Long & Winding Road'

Swoon and sway
Pin-Barrel Harp Chris Wood operating and Henry Dagg playing Saw   'The Long & Winding Road'


Surely this is one for finding a home in the The Museum of British Folklore as and when it is finally established.

Why can't we delight in these wonderfully crafted flights of fantasy: maybe a better thread title would have been 'EDFSS to miss out on it's inspired creation'


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 30 Jan 10 - 09:05 AM

"Why can't we delight in these wonderfully crafted flights of fantasy: maybe a better thread title would have been 'EDFSS to miss out on it's inspired creation'"

1. The EFDSS are not making a judgement on the beauty or the validity of Henry Dagg's work.

2. The commission (and the grant) was for a piece for the garden; Mr Dagg's piece evolved in a direction that he decided was unsuitable for an outdoor space.

3. The artist said that the nature of the piece would require round-the-clock security, something that was never part of the original contract and, indeed, would be beyond EFDSS's means to provide within the designated space.

4. The piece requires someone on hand to operate it for visitors. Again, this was not part of the original brief, nor was it provided for within the funding.

These are the reasons why EFDSS is, unfortunately, unable to accept the piece. This is not to say it's not an interesting and beautiful thing, but unfortunately it is not the piece that the Society commissioned, nor is it what the funders agreed to pay for. Hopefully it will find a good home soon.


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 31 Jan 10 - 09:01 AM

from today's Observer:

Victoria Coren's take


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Howard Jones
Date: 31 Jan 10 - 09:32 AM

So nearly a good article. She just couldn't resist that "Hey, nonny no".


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Subject: RE: EFDSS cock-up
From: Brian Peters
Date: 31 Jan 10 - 10:17 AM

I've just been spending some profitable hours with those "exalted bourgeois antiquarians" whose jottings are available on Take 6 . And come up with a few good songs, too. Thanks EFDSS.


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