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katy cruel/robin rowell info?

Steve Gardham 24 Feb 19 - 02:18 PM
GUEST,MAG 24 Feb 19 - 01:58 PM
Steve Gardham 19 Feb 19 - 04:15 PM
GUEST,MAG as guest 19 Feb 19 - 03:47 PM
PHJim 10 Feb 19 - 06:26 PM
GUEST,mag at library 10 Feb 19 - 01:37 PM
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Subject: RE: katy cruel/robin rowell info?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 24 Feb 19 - 02:18 PM

Newell>>Rowell>>Cruel
Proper names are notoriously fickle in folksong especially over long periods, e.g. Andrew Barton morphs into Henry Martin. And where a single Christian name occurs over similar periods some songs have more different names than same ones from version to version.

Not sure what you are suggesting with the 'Robin' connection. Quite a few versions have Rob and Bob in them. A good start would be trace all of the American versions and then try to link back the earliest to British relatives.

In oral tradition almost anything is possible, and this is compounded when we factor in the conscious rewriting of the broadside writers. Stanzas are shifted around almost at random from song to song especially with songs like this that have little cohesive narrative.

Another early piece that shares some stanzas with the family is the Scots song 'Aye Wauking 0'


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Subject: RE: katy cruel/robin rowell info?
From: GUEST,MAG
Date: 24 Feb 19 - 01:58 PM

Thank you. Steve
this gives me more locations to pursue.

It may not be relevant, but I hope it is: Derivation of the name "Rowell"
and Robin = Robin of the wild Hillsides. This would make the verse about entertaining children relevant: unfortunately, once upon a time the odd were objects of ridicule by children.

any thoughts on that?

tia, MAG


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Subject: RE: katy cruel/robin rowell info?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 19 Feb 19 - 04:15 PM

Okay 'Katy Cruel' Roud 1645 and Roud 3182.
Relates to other titles as follows some of which will be in the DT.
The Lightbob's Lassie
The Ploughboy's Lassie
The Leaboy's Lassie
The Light Bob's Honey
Lingboo's Lassie
Rob's Lassie
All of the above are in the Greig-Duncan collection
The Light Bob's Honey
Fancy Lad (broadside on the Bodleian Ballads website, type in that title to the search box)

Aye for Saturday Night

Harry Newell, A New Song called (broadside in the Madden Collection reprinted in Holloway and Black, Volume 1 'Later English Broadside Ballads'
Regimental Song in Vermont Folk Songs and Ballads
Nancy Newell
The Hexhamshire Lass
The Cobbler's Boy in Cox's Folk Songs of the South p491
Jess MacPharlane (Broadside from 1796)


All of these are closely related songs containing stanzas in common with Katy Cruel. If you can't source any I will have a look at my collection and post the ones most relevant.


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Subject: RE: katy cruel/robin rowell info?
From: GUEST,MAG as guest
Date: 19 Feb 19 - 03:47 PM

I know this "Robin Rowell" is obscure - Malcolm would have known.
Can anyone point me to less known sources of old Scottish ballad?
is not in Child's

tia. MAG


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Subject: RE: katy cruel/robin rowell info?
From: PHJim
Date: 10 Feb 19 - 06:26 PM

My favourite version is Karen Dalton's: Katy Cruel - Karen Dalton


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Subject: katy cruel/robin rowell info?
From: GUEST,mag at library
Date: 10 Feb 19 - 01:37 PM

I have always liked the song "Katy Cruel" -- lyrics a d tune of refrain are so captivating
when I started digging around to find out more about it, it seems to have many lines in common w/ an old Scots ballad, Robin Rowell, about which I can find nothing.
Some things about Robin Rowell make sense of parts of Katy Cruel.
Does anyone know where I can get more info?

writing in not from home, MAG


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