The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #110621 Message #2334189
Posted By: GUEST,Lighter
06-May-08 - 01:59 PM
Thread Name: Bertsongs? (songs of A. L. 'Bert' Lloyd)
Subject: RE: Bertsongs?
My own wild guess: there were scarcely any "protest folksongs" in the 19th C. partly because potential singer-songwriters (unlike those of the 1960s) didn't think of singing as a way to protest.
And who would they mostly be singing to? Friends and neighbors. In other words, the converted.
As to why there wereso few industrial songs in general, industry wasn't a popularly recognized song genre. Songs about sailors, soldiers, milkmaids, lords & ladies, etc., had 200 or more years to develop into recognized genres. They dealt with characters whose lives were sterotypically supposed to be more "interesting" than most
(as for the milkmaids, ye ken very weel what I mean).
Perhaps tradsong/broadside/ballad tradition became moribund before working underground, for example, could be molded into something romantically "fascinating."
And if it had been, maybe the resulting songs wouldn't contain much protest anyway. The protest element in songs that were widespread in tradition, while present, is generally pretty muted. Had it been more overt, I wonder how many people would have passed the songs on. Few traditional folk audiences, I believe, were much interested in listening to "protests" as a way of entertaining themselves (that is, forgetting their troubles).
Now I'll duck....