The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #24676   Message #322376
Posted By: Bob Bolton
18-Oct-00 - 10:49 PM
Thread Name: Lyr Req: Musselburgh Fair and Musselburgh Field
Subject: RE: Lyr/Chords Req: The Two Musselburgh Songs
G'day again Mark et al,

Looking over the whole thread and links ... the one thing we have not found is the alleged Scots song of the same tune Musselburgh Fair that Lloyd cites. Hmmm!

Lloyd was not too forthcoming on any of his provenance - in a letter to Australian collector John Meredith he admitted that he had done no "collecting" as such in Australia when he was out here as a young lad. he went on to say that his great contribution to the Australian genre was his interpretion of Lachlan Tigers, based on his memories of how it was done when he was out here between the World Wars.

A careful comparison of his text with that collected by Dr Percy Jones (or passed on to him by the columnist/later author Bill Wannan) shows near identity, except for a bit of polishing up, filling in 2 lines and a switch to Lloyd's more "working class" phraseology. Lloyd has made a strong and popular song from the collected text but his reticence on sources has always been further muddied by those (particularly Victorians) who have tried to use him to refute the solid work of Meredith in the 1950s.

They clearly resented the fact that this was mostly conducted in NSW - because John did not own a car or even drive. (40 pound tape recorders are no fun on a bicycle - heading over the Great Divide!) Evidence shows that the mobility of Australians means that most song is fairly common to all regions, but the Victorians liked to proclaim their preference for "The Lloyd Version" ... even though that would have been from NSW as well (If it had existed)!


Bob bolton