mudcat.org: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafeawe

Post to this Thread - Printer Friendly - Home
Page: [1] [2]


Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?

DigiTrad:
FATTY GROVES
LORD BANNER
MATTIE GROVES


Related threads:
Lyr Add: & info req. Matty Groves (Fairport/DT) (16)
Lyr Add: Matty Groves (parody) (18)
Matty Groves - who's the 'baddy'? (182)
Lyr Req: Billy Ross' Mattie Groves (3)
Lyr Req: Dudley vrsn of 'Matty Groves' (7)
(origins) Origins/Versions: Matty Groves / Mattie Groves (60)
Origins: Mattie Groves - What year? (81)
Bawdy Matty Groves? (37)
Mathy Groves - oil of green (40)
Lyr Req: Matty (Mathy) Groves (15)
Tackling Matty Groves: Linde Nijland (1)
Matty Groves - still around? (9)
Chord Req: Matty Groves (18)
Tune Req: fiddle sheet music for musgrave (12)
(origins) Origins: Ballad of Little Musgrave (8)
Nic Jones - Analysis of Little Musgrave (74)
Lyr Req: Mathy Groves (12)
Sexual jealousy:why ask this question-Matty Groves (47)
Matty Groves pocket knife query (30)
(origins) Origins: What/Where is Buckelsfordbery? (31)
Tune Req: jeannie robertson's little matty groves (5)
Lyr Req: Irish Mattie Groves (9)
Lyr/Chords Req: Little Musgrave and Lady Barn (31)
Lyr Req: Matty Groves (21)
Matty Groves (16) (closed)
Lyr Add: Matty Groves^^^ (8) (closed)
Help: mattie groves (9)
Lyr/Chords Req: Matty Groves (7) (closed)
Matty Groves (15)


GUEST,Booter 06 Aug 21 - 07:27 AM
Bill D 05 Aug 21 - 06:20 PM
Dave Rado 05 Aug 21 - 05:50 PM
Bill D 05 Aug 21 - 03:01 PM
Bill D 05 Aug 21 - 02:41 PM
Dave Rado 05 Aug 21 - 09:30 AM
Steve Gardham 05 Aug 21 - 06:29 AM
Dave Rado 04 Aug 21 - 08:52 PM
GUEST 04 Aug 21 - 08:51 PM
Steve Gardham 01 Jun 21 - 10:20 AM
Steve Gardham 27 May 21 - 05:16 PM
Jack Campin 26 May 21 - 05:38 PM
Brian Peters 26 May 21 - 02:50 PM
Brian Peters 26 May 21 - 02:45 PM
Brian Peters 26 May 21 - 02:05 PM
GUEST,Booter 26 May 21 - 11:19 AM
Dave Rado 26 May 21 - 10:34 AM
Dave Rado 26 May 21 - 10:32 AM
Steve Gardham 25 May 21 - 04:00 PM
Dave Rado 25 May 21 - 02:46 PM
Dave Rado 25 May 21 - 02:43 PM
Jack Campin 24 May 21 - 04:33 PM
Steve Gardham 24 May 21 - 03:59 PM
Steve Gardham 24 May 21 - 03:36 PM
Jack Campin 24 May 21 - 03:11 PM
Jack Campin 24 May 21 - 02:33 PM
Brian Peters 24 May 21 - 02:06 PM
Steve Gardham 24 May 21 - 12:20 PM
Brian Peters 24 May 21 - 05:16 AM
Steve Gardham 23 May 21 - 03:52 PM
Brian Peters 23 May 21 - 01:46 PM
Steve Gardham 23 May 21 - 12:35 PM
Jack Campin 23 May 21 - 11:58 AM
GUEST,# 23 May 21 - 11:15 AM
Steve Gardham 23 May 21 - 11:09 AM
Steve Gardham 23 May 21 - 10:48 AM
Steve Gardham 23 May 21 - 10:45 AM
Steve Gardham 23 May 21 - 10:40 AM
Jack Campin 23 May 21 - 07:28 AM
Jack Campin 23 May 21 - 05:14 AM
Jack Campin 23 May 21 - 04:02 AM
Dave Rado 23 May 21 - 02:35 AM
Dave Rado 23 May 21 - 12:40 AM
Dave Rado 23 May 21 - 12:36 AM
Jack Campin 22 May 21 - 07:45 PM
Dave Rado 22 May 21 - 05:51 PM
Dave Rado 22 May 21 - 05:48 PM
Steve Gardham 22 May 21 - 05:37 PM
Dave Rado 22 May 21 - 05:36 PM
Jack Campin 22 May 21 - 05:34 PM
Share Thread
more
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:








Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: GUEST,Booter
Date: 06 Aug 21 - 07:27 AM

Itís well documented that Jeannie learned her version from a visiting American folklorist- Sandy Paton.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Bill D
Date: 05 Aug 21 - 06:20 PM

Ok.. I don't have the Prince Heathen LP. I just thought his tune 'felt' a lot like hers in style.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Dave Rado
Date: 05 Aug 21 - 05:50 PM

Martin Carthy wrote in his sleeve notes that he set his version to the tune of a completely unrelated folk song called "The Holy Well."


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Bill D
Date: 05 Aug 21 - 03:01 PM

Now, upon looking on YouTube, I see a quite different, more 'spirited' version by Jeanne Robertson than the MP3 I have.

   (I have problems singing "Lord Randall" because I have 3-4 very different versions in my head.)

In folkdom, it's never been required to do a song exactly the same way every time.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Bill D
Date: 05 Aug 21 - 02:41 PM

In over 70 versions I have, the only one... so far.. that seems to 'feel' like a different tune is Jeannie Robertsons. She sings more slowly than most others and put her own stamp on it.

I will gradually explore a few others, but the Nic Jones tune seems to dominate.


Now... I just listened to the Martin Carthy version from above, and it is a bit like Robertson's. I am not a scholar of these things..only a collector.. but I wouldn't be surprised if Carthy hadn't heard and played with Robertson's.

   In any case, I enjoy those more than the faster versions with over-done, twangy, guitar.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Dave Rado
Date: 05 Aug 21 - 09:30 AM

Hi Steve

I know but they were still both associated primarily with Northumberland. And there is only one Lord Barnard at any given time and he was associated primarily with Northumberland. It just seems highly likely to me that the song would have originated in that region. I realise there's no proof.

Dave


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 05 Aug 21 - 06:29 AM

The Musgraves and the Barnards held land all over the north and in Scotland, and very likely the south as well. All of the rich and powerful had this going back many centuries, mainly through intermarriage, probably before any of the ballads were made.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Dave Rado
Date: 04 Aug 21 - 08:52 PM

Sorry I forgot to reset the cookie - that last post was by me!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: GUEST
Date: 04 Aug 21 - 08:51 PM

Apologies for the delay but I've finally read the section on Chappell in Karen McAulay's thesis - many thanks to Jack for the link.

IMO she doesn't paint Chappell in a negative light at all, and doesn't consider him to have been anti-Scots. He did have a mission to dispel the myth that England had no national music, and he did make some mistakes, but she doesn't seem to think he had an "agenda" in the sense of the word that would imply he would be willing to intentionally twist the truth or mislead people in order to promote his aims. I think she considers him to have made serious efforts to be fair. Many of his Scottish contemporaries did consider him to have been anti-Scottish but Karen seems to think that this says more about their Scottish nationalism and their dislike of the idea that some tunes that were then considered to have been Scottish might actually have originated in England than it does about Chappell.

She points out that he had planned to write a collection of Scots tunes, and although he never got round to it he did do some work on this. She ends her section on Chappell by writing:
William Chappell clearly enjoyed a continued interest in Scottish music, and was meticulous in his efforts to set the record straight as he perceived it. Admittedly, some would argue that his theories might have been misguided. Yet arguably it was not this, so much as the sensitivity of nationalist epistemologies that caused such upset.
If we accept that he was basically honest and meticulous and that he tried to be fair, which Karen clearly believes to be the case, then I don't see why we can't accept that when he wrote: "The tune is the usual traditional version", he honestly believed that to be true. Maybe he did get the transcription he used from Rimbault but I don't think that proves that he didn't also hear it sung orally as a traditional tune.

The fact that he didn't quote his source for the tune seems to me to have been unfairly held against him in this thread, given that it applies equally to both Rimbault and to Motherwell.

Steve says the tune has a similarity to Tudor pieces in style, and if true, that would back up the idea that it is possible that it goes back to the origins of the song, which were indeed in the Tudor period. (It was first quoted from in a 1611 play so it was clearly already very well known by then, which means it was probably dates back at least to the Elizabethan era).

So I think it is fair to say that it is a traditional tune that the song was probably sung to in both England and Scotland in much of the 19th century and quite likely much earlier; and that it is possible that it is as old as the song itslef.

I also think it's highly likely that it originated in the Durham area, given the protagonists' names; and so I'm going to sing it in a Northumberland accent.

Many thanks for everyone's help with this, it's been fascinating.

Dave


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 01 Jun 21 - 10:20 AM

Refresh!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 27 May 21 - 05:16 PM

Thanks for that, Jack! Looks to be straight up my street. But that's a lot of reading.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Jack Campin
Date: 26 May 21 - 05:38 PM

Some of Macaulay's work is here. I think she's written more on Chappell specifically. This should help with some of Dave's questions anyway.


U of Glasgow thesis


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Brian Peters
Date: 26 May 21 - 02:50 PM

Actually, Bell Duncan's reminds me a bit of the Marrowbones version of 'John Blunt', which Nick Dow believes was brought to Dorset by Scottish troops, if I remember rightly.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Brian Peters
Date: 26 May 21 - 02:45 PM

Thanks, Booter, for directing us to those examples from Carpenter. Astonishing that the ballad was still going strong in 1930, even though Greig doesn't seem to have found it.

There are three Carpenter versions with tunes. Mr Campbell's is rather like the tune for 'Young Allan', while Mrs, Campbell's is a lot simpler and more repetitive. Both are modal with a gapped scale. Bell Duncan's is pentatonic (no 4 or 7) and major, again fairly simple. None of them looks to me much like the one in Chappell, though it's just occurred to me that Chappell's is similar to that of 'Lucy Wan' as published in Lloyd and Vaughan Williams' Penguin Book (from Mrs Dann of Cambridge). Good news for Dave Rado in his search for an English tune since, even if Chappell did copy it out of Motherwell via Rimbault, it does appear that it saw service as a generic ballad tune in England!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Brian Peters
Date: 26 May 21 - 02:05 PM

I've just listened to the Jean Ritchie version, learned (according to Bronson) from her Uncle Jason. Her tune is the fairly commonplace one collected several times by Sharp and others in the mountains, but prettier than most on account of that little lift from the 5th at the beginning of the third phrase.

The really interesting thing, though, is the text, which is clearly an Americanized rendition of Child 81A, the 'Wit Restor'd' version - curiously 'Lord Bernard' is changed to 'Arnol', but 'Little Musgrave' remains unaltered. I wonder whether it was Jean or her Uncle who reconstructed the ballad.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: GUEST,Booter
Date: 26 May 21 - 11:19 AM

James Madison Carpenter collected 4 versions in NE Scotland in the 1930s. These can be accessed via the Vaughan Williams Memorial Library. He transcribed the tunes for some and recorded one I think from Bell Duncan though the recording is not the best. Was wondering how these compare with the Chappell and Motherwell tunes,


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Dave Rado
Date: 26 May 21 - 10:34 AM

Interesting that Bronson thought there was a connection between one branch of the American tunes and the Motherwell one - but it would seem that branch has never been recorded.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Dave Rado
Date: 26 May 21 - 10:32 AM

Thanks Steve - I guess I must have imagined a resemblance between those tunes.

I'm confused about something Jack wrote though. In one post he wrote:
Karen says Chappell's publication of this song predates his feud with the Scottish musical establishment, so there may not be any ulterior motive behind him cutting Motherwell out of the narrative
But in an earlier post Jack wrote:
Chappell's position that Scottish tradition was overrated runs right through PMOT. He was pretty unpleasant about it.
I don't understand how those two statements can both be right, given that Chappell only ever published the song in PMOT? The statement from Karen seems to me to imply that PMOT predated Chappell's feud with the Scottish musical establishment, but Jack's earlier statement seems to be to imply that his feud runs through PMOT. Presumably I must be misunderstanding something?

Dave


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 25 May 21 - 04:00 PM

Jean's lovely tune reminds me of the tunes I've hear to 'Lord Thomas and Fair Eleanor'. I can't hear a resemblance to Motherwell's. Her tune is in Bronson's Ab group of 15 versions mostly from the Appalachians. If you're interested in the tune families to the 74 versions of the tune he gives, reading his headnotes would be a must. They don't mean much to me as I don't understand the technical language used. He does tentatively make a connection of one branch of the American tunes to the Motherwell tune.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Dave Rado
Date: 25 May 21 - 02:46 PM

the Jean Ritchie recording is the only American recording I've heard whose tune seems to me to be related to the British one - and it's also the only American recording that refers to Little Musgrave rather than Matty Groves (although it's Lord Arnold rather than Barnard in her rendition).


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Dave Rado
Date: 25 May 21 - 02:43 PM

Very interesting discussion, many thanks.

Regarding Brian Peters' comment that:
The same tune crops up for #81 in the recently-published 1909 collection of the Kentucky ballad collector Katherine Jackson French. However, it's pretty obvious that she copied it from Chappell and grafted on the text of a Kentucky version collected by Olive Dame Campbell - something the editor doesn't seem to have spotted.
There is a version of Little Musgrave (not Matty Groves although it's American), sung by Jean Ritchie, who came from Kentucky - and the tune she sang it to sounds to me as if it was based loosely on the Motherwell/Chappell/Rimbault tune, although it's very different from it - there's a youtube recording here. Do others hear a simiilarity between her tune and the British one?

Dave


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Jack Campin
Date: 24 May 21 - 04:33 PM

I don't have any definite example of Motherwell notating a song in the field, but the tone of those notes in Blaikie (written for his own use) suggest confidence with notation.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 24 May 21 - 03:59 PM

Having now had a listen to the tune it doesn't sound much like most traditional tunes I know. It does to me have a similarity to Tudor pieces I have heard and those of The Robin Hood type. The nearest I could get to some of the phrases in trad tunes were 'Young Banker',
'Just as the tide was flowing' and Joseph Taylor's tune for 'Sprig of Thyme'.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 24 May 21 - 03:36 PM

I do believe several universities are working on a tune concordance for folksongs and ballads, so it might be worth waiting to see what they come up with. We could offer this one up to test their systems.

>>suggest that he did have his own notated copies of the tunes.<< Does this mean that there is some evidence to suggest that he was capable of pricking down the tunes himself?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Jack Campin
Date: 24 May 21 - 03:11 PM

I checked the theme code of the tune with Gore's fiddle tune index and nothing matches. So it looks like no form of it got transmogrified into an instrumental. Which doesn't necessarily mean it didn't exist in the song repertoire, but at least, nobody thought any earlier form of it was groovy enough to dance to.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Jack Campin
Date: 24 May 21 - 02:33 PM

The handwritten notes he left in Blaikie's ms (which I included in my ABC file) suggest that he did have his own notated copies of the tunes.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Brian Peters
Date: 24 May 21 - 02:06 PM

Is this tune a variant of one of the tunes in earlier collections like Thomson, R A Smith, Johnson?

I'm assuming you're suggesting that it was borrowed from another song, Steve? I believe all of those collections are online so I might try to track it down one of these days, though it would be a bit of a task!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 24 May 21 - 12:20 PM

So the next question is, where did Motherwell get it from. Was he capable of noting down tunes himself or did someone do it for him? Is this tune a variant of one of the tunes in earlier collections like Thomson, R A Smith, Johnson?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Brian Peters
Date: 24 May 21 - 05:16 AM

Steve: Rimbault is online at the Internet Archive, and the tune he prints (fully harmonized) is identical to that in Chappell. Bronson says that Rimbault 'follows Motherwell with editorial alteration', so I think that settles it, as you suggest.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 23 May 21 - 03:52 PM

I think Bronson said that Rimbault was responsible for the editorial changes and tidying up. I haven't got a copy of Rimbault so I can't be definite, but that seems the likely scenario. If Rimbault was fairly slack about his source, then Chappell would just assume the tune was traditional in general.

Chappell published an earlier version of PMOT in 1840, titled 'A Collection of National English Airs consisting of Ancient Song, Ballad & Dance tunes'. It contains pretty much the same material as the later PMOT but there is no 'Little Musgrave' which again suggests he got it from Rimbault already altered as opposed to Motherwell.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Brian Peters
Date: 23 May 21 - 01:46 PM

Interesting discussion. Having compared the Motherwell tune with Chappell's, I thought at first that the latter was copied, and then tidied up slightly by making the quaver couplets consistently dotted and removing the unexpected flat 7th. However, the changes in bars 6 and 7 look less like editorial changes, so I'm more inclined to give the benefit of the doubt, although I still think it's quite unusual to find two variants so alike in what might have been very distant locations.

The same tune crops up for #81 in the recently-published 1909 collection of the Kentucky ballad collector Katherine Jackson French. However, it's pretty obvious that she copied it from Chappell and grafted on the text of a Kentucky version collected by Olive Dame Campbell - something the editor doesn't seem to have spotted.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 23 May 21 - 12:35 PM

I see no reason why the same tune wouldn't have been used both sides of the border. The ballad was obviously very popular in London, and by 1600 England and Scotland, though it was another century to the Union, were inextricably linked by intermarriage of the nobility if nothing else. Not long after 1700 Ramsay was publishing books chock full of London theatre and pleasure garden songs. 'Scotch' songs were very popular in London in the 17th century, albeit mostly imitations.

By Ritson's time just about all traditional ballads had fallen out of usage in England, or were certainly off the radar. Even Percy's Reliques which set Europe afire and had its effect on Scotland, moved very little in England, except as reading matter for the well-off.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Jack Campin
Date: 23 May 21 - 11:58 AM

Karen sent me this link to Motherwell:

Little Mushiegrove

It looks from that as if the song had fallen out of tradition on the English side of the border (or Ritson would have noticed it). There are slight differences between Motherwell and Chappell - if anything, Chappell makes it sound more Scottish than Motherwell did. Karen says Chappell's publication of this song predates his feud with the Scottish musical establishment, so there may not be any ulterior motive behind him cutting Motherwell out of the narrative - but his version is so closely related he has to have got it either from the same tradition as Motherwell or from some oral retransmission of what Motherwell printed. Since this was 200 years after the song was written, not far from the border, tunes it was sung to can't have been very definitely from one side or the other.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: GUEST,#
Date: 23 May 21 - 11:15 AM

The following https://singout.org/matty-groves-little-musgrave-and-lady-barnard/

https://singout.org/matty-groves-little-musgrave-and-lady-barnard/

The three-part article from Sing Out! may be of use. It is interesting and related, but maybe a bit too tangential.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 23 May 21 - 11:09 AM

Bronson gives 74 tunes and all but 2 are from America.
Motherwell's tune was repeated in Rimbault 'Musical Illustrations of Bishop Percy's Reliques' 1850. I'd hazard a guess that this is where Chappell got it from.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 23 May 21 - 10:48 AM

Bronson quote 'None of these early texts, so far as I have learned, either preserves or names a tune.' Bronson didn't get everything right but 99.5% is good enough for me! And as far as tunes go probably 100%.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 23 May 21 - 10:45 AM

We haven't yet mentioned the Scottish Panmure Ms text which predates any of the English broadsides (c1620) Online somewhere. My own personal opinion, backed up by the number of 17th century versions is that the ballad was then well-known in both England and Scotland and trying to pinpoint its origin is a futile exercise.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 23 May 21 - 10:40 AM

Another curiosity is that Child published all the tunes he had access to for the ballads in his final volume, finished off by Kittredge after Child's death, and there is no tune for Child 81!! Curiouser and curiouser!! Surely he had a copy of Motherwell.

As you can both see, I was a bit slack when saying the Chappell tune had a bass line. Obviously it is in 4 part harmony or piano notation as Jack says.

Chappell must have spent the latter part of his life in Edinburgh as his records are in the Uni there and his family lived on there after his death. I have some personal correspondence of WC to Ebsworth and I had his own personal copy of PMOT which I gave to Steve R. Inside the volume were copies of his death notices and these letters. It looks like his daughter owned the copy after him.

WC edited the first 3 volumes of Roxburghe, with Ebsworth seeing to the rest. Jack is absolutely right. Both of them were very skeptical about Scottish ballad provenance, but it has to be said, not without reason in most cases. Peter Buchan comes in for about as much slating as Child gave him.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Jack Campin
Date: 23 May 21 - 07:28 AM

what reason could a collector have for transposing a tune and adding a base harmony if they all they were doing was making a copy of some sheet music, as opposed to collecting it from someone's singing or playing?

Chappell wasn't a collector, he was a musicologically inclined anthologist. PMOT was intended for people to sing to at the piano - the accompaniments added to the commercial viability of the project (and Chappell would have been a good judge of that given his role in the family firm). Putting the tune in G was the best choice for voices in the soprano/tenor range (always the first one any collection was published for.

B flat wouldn't have suited as many singers. This suggests Motherwell may not have changed it from whatever the source was - some alto or bass, perhaps.

We know where Motherwell got a lot of his material. One source was Andrew Blaikie, whose manuscript I have transcribed into ABC in my website. Blaikie doesn't give his own sources. I think C.K. Sharpe was another one - if so he will have stated his source, he was far ahead of his time in scholarly standards.

Bruce Olson told me he'd been analyzing Motherwell's tunes and finally got fed up with it as everything seemed to come from some unattributed and garbled earlier source that he already knew about. He didn't mention Little Musgrave though. But if anyone's found an earlier copy of what Motherwell printed, Bruce will have done. The archive of his site here would be worth a look.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Jack Campin
Date: 23 May 21 - 05:14 AM

This is the kind of ballad sheet Chappell was refwrencing. "To an Excellent New Tune"... which isn't there.

https://deriv.nls.uk/dcn3/7440/74407506.3.jpg

There is a reason why this made sense. Ballad sheets were sold by hawkers who sang the ballad in the street to advertise it. There was no need for either them or their buyers to pay much attention to any notation printed on the sheet - Simpson's book lists hundreds of instances when it was gibberish.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Jack Campin
Date: 23 May 21 - 04:02 AM

He references a source for the text. He doesn't imply he got the tune from there - the title mentions a tune but as Steve says that doesn't mean it provided one. His wording is deliberately vague about where he did get it.

Chappell's position that Scottish tradition was overrated runs right through PMOT. He was pretty unpleasant about it.

Karen is researching 19th century Scottish music publishing now (that's the main focus of the blog I cited) but her thesis was on Chappell - she probably knows more about him than anyone.   That blog cites comments from him about the Advocates Library in Edinburgh that imply he had to have visited it in person. How much time he spent in Scotland beyond occasional visits I don't know. In any case, Motherwell's book was internationally distributed and so high profile in the field that Chappell must have had a copy.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Dave Rado
Date: 23 May 21 - 02:35 AM

Also, I don't see why it's impossible to take Chappeell's statement that "the tune is the usual traditional version" at face value. If the song was widely sung in this country at that time to that tune, then he wouldn't have had to collect it from some named singer or have had any reason to do so - which would also explain why Motherwell didn't name a source.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Dave Rado
Date: 23 May 21 - 12:40 AM

Also what reason could a collector have for transposing a tune and adding a base harmony if they all they were doing was making a copy of some sheet music, as opposed to collecting it from someone's singing or playing?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Dave Rado
Date: 23 May 21 - 12:36 AM

He did reference an English source - he said he got it from Bagford. You don't believe him but you can't prove that he didn't.

Motherwell can't reference a Scottish source, so where does that leave him?

Who is Karen Macaulay?

Dave


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Jack Campin
Date: 22 May 21 - 07:45 PM

Chappell had an agenda. He thought the Scots had been given far too much credit for originating tunes that were actually English. And he went way too far in the other direction. Not crediting Motherwell would fit in with that. What he says in that page makes it clear he did NOT get it from any written English source he could reference.

Collectors transpose tunes all the time, for many reasons. It's common now for collectors to state the key they found the tune in - Bartok and Grainger did that - but it wasn't in Chappell's time.

I'll ask Karen Macaulay.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Dave Rado
Date: 22 May 21 - 05:51 PM

Also I thought you said Motherwell's version was in a different key and that Chappell's had a base harmony? If so it's not a straight copy.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Dave Rado
Date: 22 May 21 - 05:48 PM

Hi Steve

So why not mention Motherwell, when he mentions so many other sources, if he got it from Motherwell? And why call it "the usual traditional tune" if he didn't think it was traditionally sung to that tune?

I don't see why he and Motherwell couldn't both have got it from the tradition. I presume Motherwell doesnn't quote his source either, so I don't see why one is necessarily being evasive and the other isn't.

Dave


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 22 May 21 - 05:37 PM

Look forward to hearing it, but I have to say Chappell's tune very much looks to have been copied from Motherwell note for note. I'm pretty certain what Chappell was referring to in Bagford was a version of the broadside sans music. That tune may well date back to earlier times, or it may be that Motherwell's informant simply put the ballad to another ballad tune. I'll be able to give a more informed opinion when I've heard your rendition. I don't sight read but I have a pretty good ear.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Dave Rado
Date: 22 May 21 - 05:36 PM

PS - I think it's almost certain that Chappell didn't get the tune from Motherwell, because Chappell wrote:
"A copy of the ballad is in the Bagford Collection, entitled "A lamentable ballad of Little Musgrove and the Lady Barnet, to an excellent new tune." It is also in Wit restored, 1658; in Dryden's Miscellany Poems, iii. 312 (1716); and in Pcrcy's Reliques, series 3, book i.
I can't imagine why he would cite all those sources and yet omit mentioning Motherwell if he had really got the tune from Motherwell.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Trad. English tune for Little Musgrave?
From: Jack Campin
Date: 22 May 21 - 05:34 PM

Chappell seems to be deliberately evasive about where he got the tune. What was "usual" about it?

Karen Macaulay might know the real scoop.

https://claimedfromstationershall.wordpress.com/tag/william-chappell/


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate
Next Page

  Share Thread:
More...

Reply to Thread
Subject:  Help
From:
Preview   Automatic Linebreaks   Make a link ("blue clicky")


Mudcat time: 17 January 11:42 PM EST

[ Home ]

All original material is copyright © 1998 by the Mudcat Cafť Music Foundation, Inc. All photos, music, images, etc. are copyright © by their rightful owners. Every effort is taken to attribute appropriate copyright to images, content, music, etc. We are not a copyright resource.