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GUEST,Steve Gardham Review: Marrowbones (EFDSS Songbook reissue) (18) RE: Review: Marrowbones (EFDSS Songbook reissue) 05 Aug 07

Okay, Button,
Great to hear from you. Hope you're still squeezing that box. How're your mum and dad? Now I'm retired I can finish my sentences with as many prepositions as I like to with for and upto.

I enjoyed working on Marrow Bones with Malcolm who is a brilliant researcher. I rarely manage to come up with pieces of info he isn't already aware of. (There it is, another preposition!) The perks were good too, trawling through the Hammond ms and coming across juicy pieces of rare songs. Frank's 4 books only scraped the surface.

However I have to state I won't be officially working on The Wanton Seed for several reasons, primarily because I am heavily involved in getting Yorkshire collections onto the internet in the Yorkshire Garland Project and I don't have time.

Secondly I'd rather work to get unpublished material out in the open than songs that have already been published.

Thirdly songs collected down south dominate the market both recordings and books and it's about time we did something to redress this imbalance.

Fourthly I am much more interested in making available the songs as they were sung by the source singers, not the concoctions of scholars, and Frank, bless his soul, on a few occasios has put together bits of what are different songs. This doesn't matter to most people. I've been singing some of them for forty years myself, but technically speaking these are new songs composed by Frank, and not really representative of the tradition. I must add though this is only 2 or 3 songs out of nearly a 100.

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