The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #16745   Message #158203
Posted By: Malcolm Douglas
04-Jan-00 - 11:49 PM
Thread Name: Info Req: Polly's Love (Waterson-Carthy)
Subject: RE: Info Req: Polly's Love (Waterson-Carthy)
I was glad -and interested- to be able to help.  Songs surviving in tradition do tend to become shortened, and that isn't necessarily a bad thing; broadsides were often over-long and badly written, so the oral "filtering" process can result in something that actually works much better as a song.  It can be helpful, though, to be able to go back a step or two in order better to understand the material we're working with.  After all, tradition exists in a context, and the better we understand that, the more justice we can do it. THE CRUEL SHIP'S CARPENTER is on the Database, incidentally, here.  Described as "transcribed from the singing of Mike Waterson".  There's also an American version of PRETTY POLLY, here, and a version of The Gosport Tragedy, from The Penguin Book of Canadian Folksongs, here.  Reminds me that Banks of Red Roses contains a similar murder sequence, though I don't think that it's directly related.  If you find out any more, do let us know!