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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
GUEST,eliza c England's National Musical-Instrument? (1943* d) RE: England's National Musical-Instrument? 12 Nov 08

David, there are people who contribute to the gene pool of the tradition and there are people who do not. There are people who work extremely hard in order that you might make what you want out of our traditional music, have as much access to it as possible.
But we do not work for you. It's not that we demand your gratitude or anything, but learning other people's repertoires off their records, in essence taking their life's work as the base materials for your own ends, life's work that is intended to give to the tradition, and then demanding its ownership for in return for no endeavour of your own, is not the oral tradition (I can read just fine in lower case, thankyou). It isn't. It is a new thing, one that isn't necessarily bad as for some recordings are the only access that they have and the only way the new tradition has to keep going and flourish. But we do not want our commercial recordings and the fruits of our labours to be allied to your political agenda, it is anathema to us, and therefore you can't expect us to be quiet when we come across it. We are immigrants. The traveller side of the family especially must stand against what you believe. What is your stance on Gypsies I wonder? How do they fare in the new world order? Where do you put them?
When I grew up learning traditional songs from the traditional singers themselves it was considered the very least courtesy to ask, the same if by misfortune of geography you had to learn from recordings and you ran into them by chance, say at the National festival or at the House. No-one is stopping you from singing music that does in essence belong to you. Apparently no-one is stopping you from being blind to common courtesy as well as genuine concern for the state of your knowledge either. Choke on them all brother, they're all your's. But I will say it again. You are a tourist here. Tourist, tourist, tourist.

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