The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #169041   Message #4084641
Posted By: GUEST,Felipa
22-Dec-20 - 07:32 PM
Thread Name: Sing Christmas - Alan Lomax - 1957
Subject: RE: Sing Christmas - Alan Lomax - 1957
Track 7, The Ballad of Jesus Christ, is also known as the Ballad of the Carpenter. I used to sing it at sessions in December, but I've decided that this song is really more appropriate as an Easter time song. There is nothing in the ballad about the nativity; the song starts with Jesus as a child arguing with the Aldermen and then his father he apprenticed him a carpenter to be. The song is more about Jesus the adult organizer and then Jesus crucified.

It could also be a Labour Day / May day song. You can sing it anytime. But it doesn't fit so well as a Christmas song.

I had learned the Ballad of the Carpenter from a Phil Ochs recording. I'm surprised how fast Ewan MacColl sang it for the Sing Christmas album.