mudcat.org: Origins:same old man, sittin at the mill
Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafeawe

Post to this Thread - Sort Descending - Printer Friendly - Home


Origins:same old man, sittin at the mill

DigiTrad:
JOLLY IS THE MILLER


Related threads:
DTStudy: Jolly Is the Miller (3)
Lyr Req: Same Old Man (from Rita Connolly) (6)


sean sweeney 24 Jun 98 - 04:24 PM
BAZ 24 Jun 98 - 06:11 PM
Susan of DT 24 Jun 98 - 07:52 PM
bbc 25 Jun 98 - 08:48 AM
Chet W. 25 Jun 98 - 07:49 PM
Frank in the swamps 28 Jun 98 - 06:25 AM
Earl 29 Jun 98 - 09:05 AM
Rockaday Johnnie 29 Jun 98 - 11:07 AM
Jerry Rasmussen 16 Nov 02 - 11:03 PM
BanjoRay 17 Nov 02 - 08:55 AM
Jerry Rasmussen 17 Nov 02 - 09:00 AM
nickp 17 Nov 02 - 10:53 AM
GUEST,Billy Bob-Buck-Joe-Bob 18 Apr 04 - 06:25 PM
GUEST,Hootenanny 19 Apr 04 - 05:00 AM
Mudlark 19 Apr 04 - 04:06 PM
GUEST,Bonnie Shaljean (uncookified puter) 22 Apr 04 - 08:07 AM
Cool Beans 22 Apr 04 - 03:33 PM
Share Thread
more
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:



Subject: same old man, sittin at the mill
From: sean sweeney
Date: 24 Jun 98 - 04:24 PM

we're currently trying to re-arrange thsi folk song and can't find the original name and lyrics of this song, any help would be grreatly appreciated. msweeney@ezl.com


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: same old man, sittin at the mill
From: BAZ
Date: 24 Jun 98 - 06:11 PM

Sean
If this is the one by the Dillards I may be able to help as I've got it on vinyl somewhere. Is it something like "Same old man sittin' at the mill, mill turns around of it's own free wheel? if so let me know.
regards baz.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: JOLLY IS THE MILLER
From: Susan of DT
Date: 24 Jun 98 - 07:52 PM

Try Jolly is the Miller. It's the playparty and pretty short, but it may be some of what you want.

JOLLY IS THE MILLER

Jolly* is the miller that lives by the mill
The wheel goes 'round with a right good will
With a hand upon the hopper and another on the sack
The ladies go forward and the gents go back.

* or "Charlie"

A play-party collected in the 1940s and 1950s. RG
@playparty @work
filename[ OVRHILL5
TUNE FILE: OVERHILL
CLICK TO PLAY
RG


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: same old man, sittin at the mill
From: bbc
Date: 25 Jun 98 - 08:48 AM

I have it sung by Jerry Rasmussen & listed as traditional, called "Old Man at the Mill."

regards,

bbc


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: same old man, sittin at the mill
From: Chet W.
Date: 25 Jun 98 - 07:49 PM

Used to do this one. Only had one verse, inserted occasionally among rip-roarin' dance accompaniment:
    Same old man, works at the mill,
    And if he's not dead he's working there still,
    Hand in the hopper and hand in the sack,
    It's five miles over and two miles back.

I always thought the mill was a front for a bootlegger, hence the perceived shorter distance of the trip home.

Chet W.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: SAME OLD MAN (Holy Modal Rounders)
From: Frank in the swamps
Date: 28 Jun 98 - 06:25 AM

The Holy Modal Rounders recorded this on one of their first two albums, I don't have a turntable so I can't play them, but memory yields this much...

SAME OLD MAN
As recorded by Holy Modal Rounders on "1 & 2" (1998)

It's the same old man, sittin' at the mill.
Mill turns around of its own free will.
Yes, I'm certainly glad to be home.
New York City will continue on alone.

My mind is failin' and my body grows weak.
My lips don't form the words as I speak.
I'm floatin' away on a boat full o' pain.
You'll hear my sad cry but never see me again.

It's the same old lady, hangin' out the wash.
Now she is wearin' a mackintosh.
She was hangin' out her wash in the middle o' the rain.
Thought New York was goin' insane.

Purty(?) little leaf lyin' on the ground,
Now you are turnin' slightly brown.
Why don't you hop back up on your tree,
Turn the color green the way y' ought 'o be?

It's the same old man, sittin' at the mill.
Mill turns around of its own free will.
With my hand in the hopper and the other in a sack,
Gents come forward and the ladies fall back.

The H. M. Rounders were an outstanding old timey music duet; very faithful to the music, but with a radically free hand to the lyrics. It's a pity they seem to be so little known, possibly a result of their drug assisted decline, culminating in that pathetic counter culture icon, The Fuggs.

Frank i.t.s.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: same old man, sittin at the mill
From: Earl
Date: 29 Jun 98 - 09:05 AM

The line is:
"I'm floating away on a boat full of pain."

Another verse from the Rounders is:

It's the same old lady hanging out her wash
Now she's wearin a mackintosh
She's hanging out her was in the middle of the rain
I thought New York was going insane.

BTW - The Fugs may have been their nadir but not their culmination. In the seventies they reformed the Holy Modal Rounders as a multi-piece band and recorded several raucous mostly acoustic albums. In the eighties, the two original Rounders, Weber and Stampfel, recorded a straight duet album much like the first two. Peter Stampfel still records occasionally with his band the Bottlecaps or with a band called the Dysfunctionells. He also has an article in the revised notes for the Smithsonian Anthology.

The first two albums are definately the best. It's a shame they haven't been released on CD.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: same old man, sittin at the mill
From: Rockaday Johnnie
Date: 29 Jun 98 - 11:07 AM

It looks like the Holy Modal Rounders will be putting out another "almost duet" LP. BTW, the Fugs are a great band and said a lot of things no one else would have--i.e. "CIA Man" (Particularly their 80's live version on the "Refuse to Be Burnt Out" CD) and "South Africa" (on "No More Slavery").

One of my best 60's memories is going to Joe McCarthy's grave in Appleton wisconsin in Feb 68 with Allen Ginsberg and the Fugs while they exorcised his grave--great political theatre! They did a helluva show before that at the Cinderella Ballroom there!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: ADD: The Old Man At The Mill
From: Jerry Rasmussen
Date: 16 Nov 02 - 11:03 PM

Joe Offer brought this thread to my attention. Here are the words as I sing them. All but the "Blackbird" verse come from a recording by Clarence Ashley and friends on Old-Time Music at Clarence Ashley's released by Folkways. The two volumes have been reissued on CD by the Smithsonian. If I could only keep two folk music CDs, it would be these two..

The "blackbird" verse comes from the Leather Wing Bat, which was recorded by Burl Ives..

The Old Man At The Mill

Chorus: It's the same old man, living at the mill
         And the mill turns around of its own free will
         One hand in the hopper and the other in the sack
         Ladies step forward and the gents fall back

Then said the raven as she flew
If I was a young man, I'd have two
One for to knit and one for to sew
And I'd have a little ribbon to my bow, bow, bow
      
Then said the blackbird sitting in a chair
Once I courted a lady fair
But she turned fickle and she turned her back
And ever since then, my head's been black

Then said the owl with his head all a white
A lonesome day and a lonesome night
I thought I heard a pretty girl say
I court all night and I sleep all day

My old man's from Kalamazoo
And he don't wear no yes I do's
First to the left and then to the right
This old mill grinds day and night

Knowing Peter Stampfel, don't be surprised if his lyrics bear faint resemblance to the original.. that's why he and the Holy Modal Rounder's were so much fun..

I recorded this on the album Handful Of Songs, on the Jackrabbit label.

Jerry


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: same old man, sittin at the mill
From: BanjoRay
Date: 17 Nov 02 - 08:55 AM

The owl verse is also from a version of Leather Wing Bat by Pete Seeger
Ray


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: same old man, sittin at the mill
From: Jerry Rasmussen
Date: 17 Nov 02 - 09:00 AM

Thanks, Ray... The Leather Wing Bat shares a melody and several bird lyrics. I could just as easily have added the leather wing bat verse to this, but I liked it this way. Somebody more perceptive than I could probably trace these two songs to a common source... the missing folk link... Masato, probably..

Jerry


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: ADD Version: Same Old Man
From: nickp
Date: 17 Nov 02 - 10:53 AM

Here's what I sing - they are a complilation from various sources - looks like I can extend it a bit with some of those previously mentioned


SAME OLD MAN

Same old man sitting at the mill
Mill turns around of its own free will
Hand in the hopper and the other in the sack
Ladies step forward and the gents fall back

Down said the owl with his head all white
Lonesome day and lonesome night
Thought I heard a pretty girl say
Court all night and sleep next day

Men said the raven as she flew
If I was a young girl I'd have two
One for to fetch and the other for to sow
I'd add another string to my bow, bow, bow

Now said the tiny little leather winged bat
I'll tell you the reason that
The reason that I fly by night
Is I have lost my heart's delight

My old man's in Kalamazoo
And he don't wear no… – yes I do!
First to the left and then to the right
This old mill grinds day and night

Well I live at the mill and I spend my time
Gazing at a picture of the girl in my mind
You're so pretty, lord, what'm I gonna do
Got any grain and I'll grind it for you


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: same old man, sittin at the mill
From: GUEST,Billy Bob-Buck-Joe-Bob
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 06:25 PM

Down said a cityboy as they flew
If I was a young one I'd get two
one squeals like a pig with panties so fine
If you've seen deliverance you know whats on my mind


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: same old man, sittin at the mill
From: GUEST,Hootenanny
Date: 19 Apr 04 - 05:00 AM

Try the version by Clint Howard, that's where I first heard it. I believe it's on a recording from the Galax Fiddler's Convention (Folkways ?).
When I spoke to Clint about this song he didn't know that he had been recorded and that it would appear on an album, seems he was just competing in the ballad singers contest.

I'm not sure if it had appeared on record before then.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: same old man, sittin at the mill
From: Mudlark
Date: 19 Apr 04 - 04:06 PM

I love this song...and it is very effective played on the dulcimer in mixolydian mode.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: same old man, sittin at the mill
From: GUEST,Bonnie Shaljean (uncookified puter)
Date: 22 Apr 04 - 08:07 AM

There's a great recording of it on Jesse Colin Young's ancient vinyl LP (so ancient I'm not sure I even remember the title correctly), "Soul Of A City Boy". Fine album altogether, which I seem to recall was rare even in the good old days.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: same old man, sittin at the mill
From: Cool Beans
Date: 22 Apr 04 - 03:33 PM

Ian Matthews, post-Matthews Southern Comfort, recorded it in 1973 on an LP called Valley Hi.It's been reissued on CD.
This should get you to it on Amazon; if not (what do I know?), just run Matthews' name on amazon; it's the first recording of his that pops up and there's a sample of the song available.



http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B0000C509W/qid=1082662089/sr=2-1/ref=sr_2_1/104-3683233-7285556


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate
  Share Thread:
More...

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


Mudcat time: 28 September 6:12 AM EDT

[ Home ]

All original material is copyright © 1998 by the Mudcat Café 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.