The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #14888   Message #1897009
Posted By: Malcolm Douglas
30-Nov-06 - 07:34 PM
Thread Name: Origins: Meaning of John Barleycorn
Subject: RE: Meaning of John Barleycorn
Must I repeat, every time this thread is dragged back out of the grave, that there is no 'Traffic version' of the song? They merely recorded an arrangement, as I have said before and will doubtless have to say again, of Shadrack 'Shepherd' Hayden's version as published in The Penguin Book of English Folk Songs.

It is a "version" only in the same way that Benjamin Britten's arrangement of 'The Foggy Dew' is a "version" of that song. It is quite nice to listen to, but can tell us nothing whatever about what the song "means".

If you seek meaning, then read the other threads (see links above), many of which have far better information than is to be found here. Better still, read Peter Wood's paper, 'John Barleycorn: The Evolution of a Folk-song Family' in The Folk Music Journal (Volume 8 Number 4 2004), which traces its development through various forms from its first appearance in the 16th century.