The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #28707   Message #2115343
Posted By: Mick Tems
31-Jul-07 - 05:43 AM
Thread Name: Where is 'Laugh and Half-Daft' (Wales)?
Subject: RE: Where is 'Laugh and Half-Daft' (Wales)?
It's Llandaff, three miles north of Cardiff and famous for Llandaff Cathedral. Cardiff has a strong Irish influence, hence its very own ambassador and singer, guitarist and songwriter with The Hennessys, Frank Hennessy - and the Irish built Cardiff Docks.

I first heard a woman sing Llandaff in the The Ship And Pilot (which used to be known affectionately as The Six Tits, on account of the three sisters who kept the pub.) The Cardiff version was identical to the Irish version, the verses only deviating a tiny bit:


I come down from Llandaff, half o'er the Welsh mountains
Where the leeks and the violets and the nanny goats dwell
I come down in search of a fair gentle maiden
But where she's gone to, I'm sure I can't tell.

CHORUS   I'll weep and I'll wander, o'er hills and o'er mountains
         In search of my Jenny, oh where can she be?
         I'll weep and I'll wander o'er hills and o'er mountains
         In search of my Jenny, oh where can she be?

She's the pride of her gender, her waist it is slender
Her hair is magenta and she squints with one eye
She talks like a parson, she sings like a nightingale
And if I don't find her I'm sure I will die.

The house of her parents is highly respected
Her mother milks cows on the three-legged stool
Her father's a farmer, her aunt is a lady
Her uncle's a rogue and her brother's a fool.

I courted my Jenny, I told her I loved her
We were to be married upon the May morn
But there came a bold soldier from the Royal Artillery
And on the next morning my Jenny was gone.

I searched for my Jenny, I promised I'd find her,
I went though the cupboards, I looked under the stair,
I read through the papers, I looked up the chimney,
But the sorrowful story: I found her nowhere.

Oh say, have you seen her, to you I'll describe her,
She wears a red petticoat and a cap on her head
She moves when she's walking, she speaks when she's talking
And her linen's marked P, Q, R, X, Y and Z.

She's gone with her soldier and I'll never find her,
Farewell to you, Jenny, wherever you be
No more will I wander o'er hills and o'er mountains
Farewell to you, Jenny, now goodbye to thee.

Barbara Berry, from Chirk, sent me a song which was collected by Alfred Williams. Barbara says the song was Oxfordshire/Gloucestershire/Wiltshire/Berkshire:

The Wandering Boy

My name is Dan Largan, Cockloram Cocklane,
I come from Llangartan, a land of great fame,
With my poor heart turned up and my heart full of fear
To seek a Welsh lassie, but I can't find her here.

Chorus:        Her name it is Jinny, so neat and so sharp,
        She comes from North Wales and she plays the Welsh harp.

I courted sweet Jinny six months and three days,
She sat by my side while she played her Welsh lays,   
Till a man with a banjo came strolling that way,
He saw my Welsh lassie and bore her away.

I told her I loved her as true as the stars,
I thought her a Venus but she turned out a Mars.
She shattered my hopes with one single blow,
For she tingles her harp to a nasty banjo.

If ever I meet them, as sure as the dead,
I'll smash his old banjo on the crown of his head,
And as for false Jinny, I'll leave her to die
For deserting Dan Largan, the wandering boy.

Mick Tems