The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #68568   Message #1155714
Posted By: IanC
06-Apr-04 - 11:01 AM
Thread Name: Lyr Req: May Carol: 'Remember lords and ladies...'
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: May Song / Carol Title Unknown.

You're right it could be a problem. I'm pretty sure The Ian Campbell Folk Group never recorded a May carol, because I've tried a load of their discographies and a UK National Sound Archive (CADENSA) search. The latter turns up 486 items, but no May Carols (or anything like). They may have sung it on one of their BBC radio programs, I suppose.

What you have is certainly the chorus of a May Carol. Around here (that's Herts, Cambs and Beds) almost every village had its own version, though they were often very similar to the next village. There's a Cambridgeshire version (collected in Coton or Comberton, I believe) and a Huntingdonshire version (?Abbots Ripton) that have been recorded (i.e. written down). Hitchin had a whole, well-documented, set of dances and songs in the 19th Century and Letchworth also had a song (pre Garden City) which I think has been recorded.