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Nominations for 'new' traditional songs

Paul Davenport 28 Nov 11 - 10:40 AM
The Sandman 27 Nov 11 - 01:43 PM
Diva 27 Nov 11 - 01:06 PM
Diva 26 Nov 11 - 10:31 AM
BobKnight 26 Nov 11 - 07:15 AM
GUEST,888 25 Nov 11 - 08:56 PM
BobKnight 25 Nov 11 - 08:02 PM
BobKnight 25 Nov 11 - 08:00 PM
GUEST,Larry Saidman 25 Nov 11 - 05:26 PM
Tootler 18 Feb 11 - 06:23 AM
Tattie Bogle 17 Feb 11 - 08:56 PM
GUEST,Seonaid 16 Feb 11 - 07:58 PM
GUEST,glueman 16 Feb 11 - 04:08 PM
Jim Carroll 16 Feb 11 - 02:40 PM
GUEST,Alan Whittle 16 Feb 11 - 12:17 PM
GUEST,Shimrod 16 Feb 11 - 12:00 PM
GUEST,Alan Whittle 16 Feb 11 - 10:31 AM
George Papavgeris 16 Feb 11 - 09:27 AM
GUEST,Alan Whittle 16 Feb 11 - 09:19 AM
GUEST,Alan Whittle 16 Feb 11 - 09:11 AM
GUEST,TIA 16 Feb 11 - 08:26 AM
Will Fly 16 Feb 11 - 08:24 AM
GUEST,Richard I 16 Feb 11 - 08:17 AM
Jim Carroll 16 Feb 11 - 08:12 AM
Spleen Cringe 16 Feb 11 - 07:20 AM
MGM·Lion 16 Feb 11 - 07:05 AM
Will Fly 16 Feb 11 - 06:57 AM
MGM·Lion 16 Feb 11 - 06:29 AM
GUEST,TIA 16 Feb 11 - 06:29 AM
Will Fly 16 Feb 11 - 06:23 AM
Will Fly 16 Feb 11 - 06:19 AM
Paul Davenport 16 Feb 11 - 05:10 AM
Will Fly 16 Feb 11 - 04:52 AM
MGM·Lion 16 Feb 11 - 04:22 AM
Jim Carroll 16 Feb 11 - 04:13 AM
Jim Carroll 16 Feb 11 - 04:00 AM
Will Fly 16 Feb 11 - 03:55 AM
MGM·Lion 16 Feb 11 - 03:41 AM
GUEST,Shimrod 15 Feb 11 - 05:26 PM
Tootler 15 Feb 11 - 04:28 PM
GUEST,Seonaid 15 Feb 11 - 04:01 PM
Spleen Cringe 15 Feb 11 - 12:49 PM
Charley Noble 15 Feb 11 - 12:16 PM
Jim Carroll 15 Feb 11 - 12:02 PM
Tootler 15 Feb 11 - 09:37 AM
Tattie Bogle 15 Feb 11 - 09:28 AM
GUEST,Henryp 15 Feb 11 - 09:17 AM
Tattie Bogle 15 Feb 11 - 08:31 AM
Jack Blandiver 15 Feb 11 - 07:10 AM
MGM·Lion 14 Feb 11 - 11:25 PM
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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Paul Davenport
Date: 28 Nov 11 - 10:40 AM

There's a strong argument that, until the song exists in several different versions, it isn't 'traditional'. Which, of course raises a set of quite interesting question marks. Discuss – but leave me out of it. :-)


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: The Sandman
Date: 27 Nov 11 - 01:43 PM

none of them will be traditional until they are processed


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Diva
Date: 27 Nov 11 - 01:06 PM

Still haven't learned how to do blue clickies!


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Diva
Date: 26 Nov 11 - 10:31 AM

Any of the songs here would qualify. http://www.thewildbeesnest.ie

Particularly The Dunghill Boy by Fergus Russell


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: BobKnight
Date: 26 Nov 11 - 07:15 AM

Thank you guest,888 for making the "live" link. All the best. Bob


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: GUEST,888
Date: 25 Nov 11 - 08:56 PM

http://www.youtube.com/bobknightfolk#p/u


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: BobKnight
Date: 25 Nov 11 - 08:02 PM

Ah well - that didn't work.


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: BobKnight
Date: 25 Nov 11 - 08:00 PM

I write songs in traditional style - have a listen. I believe some are being sung by others.
                                           http://www.youtube.com/bobknightfolk#p/u


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: GUEST,Larry Saidman
Date: 25 Nov 11 - 05:26 PM

How about Ian Tyson's "Four Strong Winds".


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Tootler
Date: 18 Feb 11 - 06:23 AM

He clearly varies his story somewhat as I definitely heard "Scottish" from the man himself.


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 17 Feb 11 - 08:56 PM

Tootler, I know it was St Andrew's University, but the story I heard from the man himself WAS Irish trad! Go to any Scottish session and you will almost certainly hear Irish songs sung as well! (Pedants v pedants it seems! :-) )

Can I add another to the list? "The Earl of March's Daughter" by the too-soon-taken-from-us Lionel McClelland?


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: GUEST,Seonaid
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 07:58 PM

When a song speaks to you, for whatever reason, you may feel compelled to speak for it. It doens't necessarily depend on your own obvious activities.
Were the crofters part of the king's courts and fairy barrows they sang of? No, but those songs expressed something for them. As long as that expression was important to someone, the songs continued. You can express a lot of your own sorrow in a good sad song, without having to reveal your personal pain or circumstance. It's a useful emotional tool.
Yes, it's also an art form, of which certain singers were (and are) immensely and justifiably proud. But the persistence of the tradition always depended on who else cared. Still does.


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: GUEST,glueman
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 04:08 PM

I also agree, which is why there's no point criticising white English kids singing the blues or adopting American rock and roll accents or whatever. Some of the finest music ever written was sung in Latin and barely understood by those singing the vowels and consonents. One adopts a 'strategic voice' to encounter the music.


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 02:40 PM

"I don't buy the idea that you have to be part of a particular world before you can sing the song.
Amen to that.
Folk/traditional songs are narratives that deal with the human condition: that is why they have lasted so long and have more or less taken root wharever they landed.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: GUEST,Alan Whittle
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 12:17 PM

Obviously you missed that episode of The Archers where Walter Gabriel said, 'Oooh Ah! me old beauty! I be dying to sing Matty Groves, but that there song be about folks above my class...Oi know me place,me old beauty.'


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: GUEST,Shimrod
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 12:00 PM

Personally, I don't buy the idea that you have to be part of a particular world before you can sing the song. Its interesting that that was an argument that never seemed to apply to all the East Anglian Blues singers of my youth, for a start!

Nevertheless, if such a stricture did apply it would have stopped many of the ploughmen, milk maids, gypsies, fishermen etc. singing many of the ballads in Child's canon, for example, as many of those are about the doings of kings, queens, noble lords and ladies etc.

In addition I doubt whether many singers of 'The Flash Lad' in its many variants had ever been highwaymen and I bet that not all of the singers of 'The Bold Princess Royal' had actually been to sea.


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: GUEST,Alan Whittle
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 10:31 AM

You're a very good writer and a very witty guy George. I caught your gig at The Sunray FC, which is in the next village.You remind me a bit of how Harvey Andrews was at one stage. Do you know Harvey's work at all? His hay day was a bit before your time maybe.

He used to work with a guy called Graham Cooper who was an incredible musician - keyboards and guitar. It enabled Harvey to give a histrionic sweep to some of his songs - a sort of Jacques Brel feel. I kept thinking as I watched you.....someone like Graham, it might be fun for you.

Anyway...just an idea!


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 09:27 AM

You have an evil sense of humour, Al - and I like it!


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: GUEST,Alan Whittle
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 09:19 AM

By the way, did we ever agree what the 'old tradition' was?


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: GUEST,Alan Whittle
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 09:11 AM

What happens when we get a list of 'new traditional' songs we all agree? Do we give a party and sing them all? Do we award a certificate to the first person who chose that song?

What if you nominate someone's song, they get elected and then you think - I don't like him. Can we take the honour back?

This whole business is fraught with peril and uncertainty.


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: GUEST,TIA
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 08:26 AM

Or any number by Dougie MacLean


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Will Fly
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 08:24 AM

No, sorry Will; but you have not made your reasons "abundantly clear" for not performing traditional songs ~~ not to me, in any event.

Sorry Michael - I was forgetfully referring to another, older thread where we had gone over the business before. You had likened the singing of a song to an actor being given a script - to which I replied that sometimes the actor had to return the script to the agent on the grounds of unsuitability... :-)

I ought to add here, just to clarify matters, that I purposely choose material to sing which has little or no significance to anything. Just fun and frivolity- such is my shallow nature - though I do have a partiality for old Music-Hall material. Frank Crumit's "The Song Of The Prune" shows you how low I can sink.


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: GUEST,Richard I
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 08:17 AM

In response to Will Fly's interesting remarks
I do wonder about the issue of authenticity, and whether I can really "sing a traditional song as though we were part of the world that it came from".

1) A lot of the songs I learned are songs of the sea, for chanty sings and so on. It's here that I have the biggest sense of "why am I singing this"? I've never really been sailing even for pleasure, much less on a clipper. I know songs about fishing, but I know very little of the reality of fishing. That is not a world I inhabited, nor is it even a world any of my ancestors inhabited. Because I'm from Liverpool, I justify one or two to myself on the grounds that they refer to the place, and therefore have something to do with a sense of place (e.g. Roll, Alabama, Roll is an important reminder of Merseyside's role supporting the Confederacy in the American Civil War), but this isn't necessarily true. The only 'song of the sea' that I can think of as something I learned FROM being in Liverpool, and hearing it song by people I knew (at celebrations etc.) is "The Leaving of Liverpool", which clearly has associations that go well beyond the seafaring life to which the words responded.

2) I do have a big repetoire of songs I learned from family. This, I think, really is a tradition within which I am able to sing and express myself, because I'm passing on stories and songs that my own relatives passed on to me when I was a child. For example, I was sung Coulter's Candy as a lullaby when I was a child; now I sing it to my baby son when he's crying, and it clearly soothes him. The only problem here for me is a geographical one: the songs I'm thinking of here are mostly Scottish, because of having a Scottish father and uncle who sang to me. And so I'm singing songs about Scottish city life even though I'm not from a Scottish city; and to confound the problem, these songs were meant to be sung in an accent that I don't have. So the true songs which reflect the passing on of tradition through the family may, in a way, SOUND fake, even though they're not.

3) On the other hand, there are a number of songs that I've learned from my city of birth (Liverpool) that are not from 'oral tradition' in this kind of way, but definitely do reflect the place in which I grew up in. So here, I think I am singing songs that are part of my world, and I am within their world. But the method by which I learned them wasn't the 'oral tradition' in the strict sense. (An exception here, which I've already raised earlier in this thread, would be football songs which I've learned at the match and in pubs)

4) But there is also a vast swathe of songs that deal with universal issues. Ranging from jealousy to incest to the glories/dangers of drink. Can I sing these songs as though I was part of their world? I don't know. If I sing "The Bitter Withy", for example, I am not part of a cultural setting that is even aware that the willow tree rots from the inside out. However, I was raised Catholic, and I was told apocryphal stories and Jesus' childhood. Moreover, the very English issue of class conflict (Jesus as a poor boy, the rich boys looking donw on him) are meaningful to me and many of the people who've listened to me sing the song. If I sing "Lucy Wan", the reference to a broadsword is an historic anachronism (as it probably was among 19th and early 20th century singers of the song, I guess, although I'm willing to be corrected), but the horror of incest and of murder are still real get reactions from people today... it doesn't go away just because time has moved on (it is probably an immortal taboo). These are songs that I didn't learn strictly from the "oral tradition", but I don't think they're culturally alien to me, because I think the themes they deal with remain relevant.


So, in short, I sing 1) songs that I have no business singing, 2) songs that I learned as a child but that I probably sound silly singing because I have the wrong accent, 3) songs that reflect the place where I grew up, but that I didn't learn as a child, 4) songs that deal with universal themes, but that I didn't learn as a child.

Aside from category 1, I would say that the other 3 categories are 'traditional singing'. But each of them can be contested. Sorry for such a long-winded reflection!


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 08:12 AM

"There you go, Jim.."
Thanks for that Spleen - ah, those were the days!!!
"Might the scholarship and research and authenticity questions make us lose sight of the musical merit"
I think it might - if you let it.
For me, singing traditional songs is a balance between mastering the mechanics of singing, and understanding and feeling the song, falling down too heavily on one side or the other can be a disaster, espacially if you over-intellectualise your material.
I probably over-quote my favourite saying, from the introduction to Wimberly's Folklore in the English and Scottish Ballads, but here goes again:
"An American Indian sun-dance or an Australian corroboree is an exciting spectacle for the uninitiated, but for one who understands something of the culture whence it springs it is a hundred fold more heart-moving."
I've always believed that, thanks to an over-concentration on the gathering of songs as 'collectables', rather than what I believe they were - a part of peoples lives, we know virtually nothing about the people who sang them, why they sang them, what made them so important that they were passed on from generation to generation down the centuries... nothing!
There have been tantelising glimpses - Texas Gladden's description of Mary Hamilton going to her execution, Dillard Chandler's desire to 'creep up behind Lord Barnard and stab him...'... but nowhere near enough to build a complete picture.
We spent a large slice of our lives trying to fil in some of the blanks, almost certainly too little, too late, but at least a small taste of what we believe it was all about.
Walter Pardon took us out to his front gate once and pointed to the field opposite and said "That's where the pretty ploughboy used to plough"; not because he believed it but because that's what he saw every time he sang the song. That happened to us several times with singers we recorded, enough to make us believe in the universality of the songs, that they trancended their time and historical and social settings and speak for me - a retired time-served electrician that spent all of my working life in an urban background.
I don't sing regularly any more - not because I have lost interest, but because of my belief in the need to put in sufficient work before you expose your songs to the public; other activities have stopped me doing that. I miss it desperately, but Walter and Mikeen McCarthy and Mary Delaney... and all the others we have been lucky to know have been a more than adequate compensation.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Spleen Cringe
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 07:20 AM

There you go, Jim... it's only a brief mention, mind you: Steve Turner interview


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 07:05 AM

No, sorry Will; but you have not made your reasons "abundantly clear" for not performing traditional songs ~~ not to me, in any event. Still, I am happy to let the matter rest.

Regards

~M~


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Will Fly
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 06:57 AM

You're not quite with me, Michael - perhaps I haven't explained it very well - and I should separate the personal from the polemic. Forget my own personal musical likes. I may not perform many traditional songs for reasons I've made abundantly clear, but I'll perform traditional tunes until the cows come home.

My doubts are about the apparent inability of the Tradition to take in much new material because it's not been honed by the (dread phrase) "folk process" - because it has a known composer, for example - even though it may have some significance for a particular community. New material can never become Traditional because it cannot pass a test which is now unavailable to take. And I'm talking about modern songs which are written in the traditional style and genre. So the great mass of Traditional material - loaded with cultural and historical significance, an important and eloquent Document mainly from the working-class stratum of society - is, in one sense, a closed book.

What I'm trying to say in my convoluted way, is that some separation of music and 'message' may be necessary for the Tradition to remain vibrant and in growth. Perhaps such insignificant tasks as setting new words to old tunes - or old words to new tunes - might help the process.


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 06:29 AM

I see what you mean, Will, but can't {obviously as I do sing the songs} sympathise with it. When one sings, it is a performance, just as much as being in a play. One adopts a persona, recognised by convention by both one's audience and oneself, as not being one's own. Your attitude rather reminds me of that of Philip Stubbs, the Elizabethan Puritan in excelsis, to the Theatre; & of Cromwell for same reason closing down all the playhouses under his Commonwealth.

~Michael~


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: GUEST,TIA
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 06:29 AM

Both Sides the Tweed


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Will Fly
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 06:23 AM

'oings' is, of course, my own personal keyboard dialect for 'songs'!

I should also have added that, if you don't happen to live in a community where such traditions as mining have a significance - London's Bayswater, for example, where I used to live in the late '60s - then the reasons for performing are different again.


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Will Fly
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 06:19 AM

Paul - many people can and do sing these oings with feeling and with some sense of personal attachment. I can't. The fact that I've lived in a Sussex village for the past 35 years still doesn't qualify me - on my own terms - to perform a song about being a shepherd on the South Downs with any degree of adequacy. There would always be another me on the shoulder - one with horns - whispering, "Garn - gerroff!"

But the original question wasn't really about personal performance or me or otherwise. It was about the potential danger in treating these songs more as socio-cultural-historical documents, with - sometimes - just a touch of inverted class snobbery, than as entertainment and music for pleasure. I don't think one should aim overly subvert the other.


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Paul Davenport
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 05:10 AM

'How many of us now can honestly sing a traditional song as though we were part of the world that it came from?'
This is a question that has been heard many times and not satisfactorily answered in my opinion. The thing is, those worlds extend a lot further than you think. When I was a lad it was estimated that one third of the population of my home town owed their living directly or indirectly to the fishing industry. After the 'Cod War' the population has now dropped by a third! Now that actually totals 100, 000 souls. Thats a hell of a lot of people who were obviously part of that world of the fisherman. Actually I have lived all of my adult life in the Yorkshire coalfield, I have taught miners and their children. I have been harrassed by police during the miners strike, forced from my car and searched in case I was smuggling secondary pickets. When a friend died in an explosion in a coal mine it touched us deeply. I've never been down a mine but, like thousands who've lived in these villages I am a part of that world too. I reckon this is true for countless thousands of people especially when the chips are down and the community has to pull together. I'm not convinced that there's a need to actually be a miner, fisherman, or blacksmith to sing about them, it's more a matter of empathy and closeness to the people around you.


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Will Fly
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 04:52 AM

'Traditional' carries a whole lot of cultural and historical baggage that goes way beyond its entertainment function; this is what has been researched and documented extensively, and whatever happens on the club scene, it is this that will survive, both in archive form and documentation.

Jim - you must be a thought reader! I've been privately mulling over just this very point a number of times recently. (As you can see, I've nothing better to do in retirement). It's very obvious from your own detailed and personal postings here in the past that, in addition to the "cultural and historical" significance of traditional music, it has a very personal and particular significance for you - dare I say almost a liberating one? As you've described it, hearing this stuff for the first time gave a sense of direction and meaning to your life - and correct me if I'm wrong.

Now, not being a huge fan of such cultural and historical significance in song (I should stress that I also love the stuff of tradition but prefer to get my dosage of it from reading) I wonder if there's a danger of the music itself being lost. Might the scholarship and research and authenticity questions make us lose sight of the musical merit or otherwise of the melodies - perhaps forget the part they play in sheer entertainment? You might think it a trivial quibble, but one of the reasons I prefer to play, rather than sing, traditional and not-quite-traditional tunes is that, on the whole, they don't come with any baggage other than their melodies.

I'm not a weaver, nor a blacksmith, nor a shoemaker nor a miner - all those people formed part of my own ancestry in England, Ireland and Scotland but are long gone - and I can't feel it in me to sing songs as though I were one of those people. But playing tunes from all their cultures has a freedom for me that the performance of their songs doesn't. And, as I've said many times before, there's less worry about more recent traditional-style jigs, reels and hornpipes sliding into the canon than there is with songs. This is precisely because tunes aren't loaded with a cultural and historical baggage. You can play them and dance to them without a care in the world.

How many of us now can honestly sing a traditional song as though we were part of the world that it came from? Very few, is my guess. So those that do are almost characters in a sort of historical re-enactment society. Nothing wrong with that, by the way, but I have to confess that, for me, the melody is more important than the content.


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 04:22 AM

Will ~ Many thanks for your reply.

~M~


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 04:13 AM

PS;
Meant to say that the only thing that people on the folk scene are guaranteed to have in common is a love of the music, and this can vary wildly from club to club.
I don't believe this comes anywhere near any definition of 'community'.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 04:00 AM

Spleen
Thanks for your response
"in which you get mentioned, by the way"
Moi....! love to read it - be interested to read what you have to say about Canny Fettle.
What you say is true; of course clubs have evolved their own customs, practices, modes of creation... - not sure they can be described as traditions, but I suppose it's as good a name as any as long as it doesn't create the same confusions as the misuse (IMO) of the term 'folk' has. As I said, whether the songs stand the test of time and become 'traditional' in the way our folk repertoire has been recognised and documented (in great detail) remains to be seen.
The problem is that 'traditional' was applied to a specific type of song that drew us all together in the first place and is why we're talking to each other now. Those songs went through a specific process in their creation and development and have come to mean something every bit as specific as 'classical' (I'm aware that even in classical circles there are squabbles over the term). We approach the term with the expectation of finding something that relates directly to what has gone before, not necessarily in form, (though traditional songs of a particular culture do bear certain similarities to one another), but certainly in the way it has evolved, and what that evolution signifies culturally. 'Traditional' carries a whole lot of cultural and historical baggage that goes way beyond its entertainment function; this is what has been researched and documented extensively, and whatever happens on the club scene, it is this that will survive, both in archive form and documentation. It is largely what those of us who have a foot in both camps, as enthusiasts and researchers, have problems with - probably why we're such pains in the arse.
Meant to take up a point made earlier about The Prairie Home Companion definition, but haven't woken up yet, so might come back later.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Will Fly
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 03:55 AM

Michael, having words to a song inscribed on your front door is not a performance of it in public. Neither are the words being printed and doled out to people by having it inscribed there. If I tattooed the words on my chest, I wouldn't have to pay every time I breathed... The law of copyright is odd and pretty complex at times - but not that odd!

As far as the crowds in the Kop are concerned, the spontaneous singing of a song is not a public performance from which the crowd, the club or a TV company is making money. Neither the club nor the TV company has any control over what a football crowd spontaneously sings. Do I pay the PRS a fee for every song I sing out loud as I walk up the High Street to collect my morning paper? I think not.


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 03:41 AM

Reverting to Never Walk Alone ~~

"I have actually long wondered what was the position of the Rodgers & Hammerstein estate. Can they claim a royalty every time the crowd is heard singing You'll Never Walk Alone on Match Of The Day or Sky tv? And, if so, do they? And from whom? & do Liverpool pay them anything for having the words inscribed on their gate? And, if not, why not?"

~ I asked some days, and many posts, ago; but nobody has come up with an answer; so I repeat the question here.

This seems to me a matter of some interest, and I wonder if any Catter out there [we all know that Catters among them comprehensively cover every possible field of human knowledge!] can supply an answer.

~Michael~


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: GUEST,Shimrod
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 05:26 PM

I would suggest that anyone who thought that 'Last Thing On My Mind' was Irish or Scottish trad. was either (a) completely ignorant of Irish and/or Scottish trad. folk song (not to mention Tom Paxton's output) or (b) a bit 'intellectually challenged'.


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Tootler
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 04:28 PM

Never heard it sung in Ireland in 40 years, but maybe I'm moving in the wrong/right circles,

Possibly because it was never recorded by the Dubliners. ;-)


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: GUEST,Seonaid
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 04:01 PM

An anthropologist (I believe it was Marston Bates) once observed that you could make almost anything disappear if you tried hard enough to define it.


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Spleen Cringe
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 12:49 PM

Jim, sorry to take so long to respond to your response to my response etc - I've been busy writing an article on Canny Fettle (in which you get mentioned, by the way!)...

Anyhow, just a couple of things. I was interested to see your dictionary definition of "traditional" included "Any time-honoured practice or a set of such practices." Now, I know I should probably pause to attempt to define both "time-honoured", "practice" and, for that matter, "any", but it does occur to me that any practice that has been going on for years in the folk scene, such as the writing of new songs in the traditional folk idiom, might be accurately described as one of the traditions of that scene. I do accept your point that such a tradition is different to the older tradition of creating and passing down and mutating songs within a village or region or work community, but as that tradition is almost certainly extinct in the UK, this newer tradition (60 years young!) in the folk community is an interesting developement in its own right and, it might be argued, a tradition in its own right, albeit one that is slightly different to the older defunct folk tradition - largely because of the differences in what constitutes community. It is fascinating to think that for the past 60 years there has been a group of people who self-consciously attempt to write songs that echo and pay homage to the traditional songs of these islands and get taken up and sung by other members of that community, some of whom will not only have not met the author, but not even be aware of their existance. I wonder what this process is, if its not a form of the folk process still alive and kicking in this particular community of interest?

"Going by your own definition - what right have you to suggest that Elvis tributes don't count at a folk club - the club is the community, therefore anything they care to put on is 'traditional' - isn't that what you are suggesting?"

Not at all. For a start off, I'm not attempting to define anything, just to describe something that appears to be actually happening in a particular community - if you accept my description of the folk scene as a community. If its not, it certainly looks and behaves like one! As for Elvis tributes, I would suggest that would be something slightly different to writing new songs in the style of traditional songs. Though, of course, there is an argument that some of Elvis's earliest singles were rooted in the blues and folk traditions of the American south, if different in execution and purpose.

Anyway, I digress. Back to listing great songs, I reckon.


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Charley Noble
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 12:16 PM

I'm mulling over whether any of the poems by C. Fox Smith (1882-1954) that have been adapted for singing will become "traditional." There are many that would be good candidates in terms of structure and tune but only a few that have become anonymous enough so that people actually thought they were traditional.

"Homeward" comes to mind, composed during World War 1 and which resurfaced in the 1970's as an anonymous poem whose location shifted from the Western Front to India. Sarah Morgan spotted it in a military newsletter and adapted it for singing, retitling it "Home, Boys, Home," and it's now been recorded by more than a dozen different groups, and sung at innumerable folk clubs.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 12:02 PM

"The Last Thing on My Mind":
Never heard it sung in Ireland in 40 years, but maybe I'm moving in the wrong/right circles,
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Tootler
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 09:37 AM

[Pedant note]
She was told it was Trad Scottish - She was at St. Andrews University at the time.
[/Pedant note]

I agree he enjoys telling the story, though. He adds that she did manage to persuade the singer, somewhat reluctantly, that it was not trad when she told him who her dad was!


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 09:28 AM

I think he was not displeased, as he delights in telling the story!


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: GUEST,Henryp
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 09:17 AM

"The Last Thing on My Mind": Tom Paxton tells how his daughter was in the audience when someone sang it. She thanked the singer for singing "my dad's song", only to be told it was trad irish! (Much like the John Conolly story re Fiddler's Green).
-----------------------------------------------------
The song had passed the acid test. The appropriate response would be; And that's the ultimate tribute to him!


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 08:31 AM

"You'll never walk alone"is in 4/4 in "Carousel" but in 6/8 in Gerry Marsden's version: could this be "the folk process"?

"Yellow on the broom" great song, but borrowed the tune from "The Female Drummer": the former is now probably a lot better known than the latter.

"The Last Thing on My Mind": Tom Paxton tells how his daughter was in the audience when someone sang it. She thanked the singer for singing "my dad's song", only to be told it was trad irish! (Much like the John Conolly story re Fiddler's Green).

I'd like to nominate some of Davy Steele's songs, e.g. The Last Trip Home re the change from horsepower to mechanisation on farms, and Farewell to the Haven, re the demise of the fishing industry - and on the same topic, Scott Murray's "Guiding Light". Several of Robin Laing's, Ian McCalman's and Karine Polwart's, especially 'Follow the Heron" which is already sung by just about every community choir in Scotland.

Then for tunes: "Calum's Road" by Donald Shaw, and any number of Phil Cuningham's, John McCusker's and Gordon Duncan's.


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 07:10 AM

Here's The Saint Anne of Dunkirk: http://soundcloud.com/rapunzel-and-sedayne/st-anne-of-dunkirk

See below for whys & wherefores.


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Subject: RE: Nominations for 'new' traditional songs
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 14 Feb 11 - 11:25 PM

... who, Kitty, also wrote "I am a Dundee Lassie", to tune of "The Lass of Fyvie", which is on Topic's great The Iron Muse industrial song compilation.

~M~


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