The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #111362   Message #2564538
Posted By: Malcolm Douglas
11-Feb-09 - 09:43 PM
Thread Name: Origins: Pendle, oh Pendle / Old Pendle
Subject: RE: Origins: Pendle, oh Pendle / Old Pendle
I thought there was beginning to be something a little familiar about this discussion, but had assumed that IB would have consulted the search engine before starting a new thread. Just goes to show, I suppose. The two previous threads are:

Folklore: Hunting the witch at Pendle Hill (2005-6)
Lyr Req: Old Pendle (Milton Allen, Brian Osborne) (2006)

I presumably read them at the time. Several of you lot were major participants, and variations on the same information are included.

One point raised and not yet mentioned in this new thread was the noticeable similarity of the modern 'Pendle' tune (tunes, I suppose, if we allow the possibility that the two Brians came up independently with very similar ones) to Colin Wilkie's 'You Won't Get Me Down in Your Mine'. This also appears on Songs of a Changing World, of course, sung by Nic Jones during a rather over-stylized period; perhaps that was why I hadn't previously noticed how like the 'Rosemary' melody on the same record it was.

As I mentioned earlier, the 'Rosemary' melody is fairly generic and bears in turn a resemblance to forms of 'The Unfortunate Rake' that I'd consider sufficient to treat them as members of the same family regardless of copyright issues or questions of relative originality. Wilkie's song has the feel of a relative in another branch, so to speak; and indeed, 'The Blantyre Explosion' on the same record is sung to yet another relative, more usually associated with 'The Streets of Laredo'. It must fall to those familiar with the 'Pendle' tune(s) to comment further on the degree of correspondence between all these if they think it relevant or interesting.