The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #143515   Message #3835526
Posted By: GUEST,Jim Bainbridge
29-Jan-17 - 01:27 PM
Thread Name: Sammy Bar.. Irish version.
Subject: RE: Sammy Bar.. Irish version.
Yes, a considered post, Roy McLean- I do agree that a SHORT intro to a song can be appreciated by listeners, but not when talking down to people who may know more than you. To say 'Here's Dirty Old Town' by Luke Kelly' might be an example of this. But to return to the subject, Cyril never did this, despite his vast knowledge. And Martin Ryan, yes agreed about keeping it short- the kind of intro saying the 'song's about him & she did that & then she did this & after that they went to.......' and yes it happens!

But I don't like section 5 of your otherwise reasoned post- this is traditional music, I think, and to talk of the 'original' version and then disapproving of modifications to that 'original' just miss the point, this is a music of constant change not frozen in time. Yes, respect is due to all the repertoire, and especially to songwriters who have a right to have their work delivered as intended, unless agreed otherwise with the writer.

A similar attitude comes from Jack Campin. The two tunes you mention -'McLeod's Reel' and 'Bluebell Polka' have a history and I don't doubt that Miss MacLeod existed but the tunes were not delivered to yer man Kerr in Scotland nor to the other one in the mid-1770s in a flash of light by the Angel Gabriel. It was almost certainly already in existence in some form.
And perish the thought- there is no proof this material was even Scottish, musicians travelled even then, Using material from the folk tradition was OK for Dvorak and Vaughan Williams so why not others?

These tunes were probably collated/ plagiarized (you choose which- I don't know) from existing material and why not?
And to say there is a formula for the polka negates the very nature of traditional music. Historically there may have been written down 'classic' polkas with many examples of the formula mentioned as the 'correct' one.
But the music has moved on & to deny it is to put the music in a straitjacket which will kill it. there are many styles of polka in 2017, but to set up rules about it would deny that such as Walter Bulwer and Scan Tester had any right to their own way of playing them.

And all you English players, even the tunes you play from the Bulwer/Tester/Woods/Cann repertoire are not sacrosanct- theirs is NOT the definitive version, to be played note-for note -anything can be re-arranged -give the music respect but GO ON GO ON do it your own way!!

ps Jack, its not surprising about your six million hits on google- that's what people think- welcome to the real world!