The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #50640   Message #772013
Posted By: John Minear
26-Aug-02 - 08:10 PM
Thread Name: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion-Child #18
Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
Jon, thanks very much for letting us know about your posting of "Wild Boar". Since I'm interested in how these songs travel, can you say a little about Bob Webb and where he might have found the song? Your second point is fascinating. I would vote with Grundtvig making "Sir Lionel" number one. Although it would be hard to do that without knowing any of the American "Bangum" songs. I've never understood why Child ignored the American songs. I confess I have not read any studies about him. But surely he knew of the existence of American balladry - even at Harvard! (I can only say that because my daughter is an alum, and yes I'm bragging, about her, not about Harvard).

Here are the four examples collected by Cecil Sharp in this country. One is from North Carolina, from the Big Laurel country in Madison County; one is from Woodridge, Virginia; and two are from Kentucky.

The first one was sung by Mrs. Tom Rice, on August 16, 1916, at Big Laurel. It has a very unusual tune.

Bangry Rewey a courting did ride,
His sword and pistol by his side.
Cambo key quiddle dow, quill o quon.

Bangry rode to the wild boar's den
And there spied the bones of a thousand men.

Then Bangry drew his wooden knife
To spear the wild boar of his life.

The next one was sung by Mrs. Betty Smith and Mr, N.B. Chisholm, on September 27, 1916, at Woodridge, Virginia. It doesn't say whether they sang the song together or not. That would have been unusual.

There is a wild boar in these woods,
Dellum down, dellum down,
There is a wild boar in these woods,
He'll eat your meat and suck your blood.
Dellum down, dellum down.

Bangrum drew his wooden knife
And swore he'd take the wild boar's life.

The wild boar came in such a flash,
He broke his way through oak and ash.

This one was sung by Mrs. Mollie Broghton, at Barbourville, Knox County, Kentucky, on May 10, 1917.

I went out a hunting one day,
Dellum down, dillum,
I went out a hunting one day,
And I found there where a wild boar lay,
Come a call, cut him down,
Quilly quo qua.

I hunted over hills and mountains,
And there I found him on his way.

The wild boar came in such a dash,
He cut his way through oak and ash.

I called up my army of men;
He killed one, two three score of them.

And finally, from Miss Violet Henry, of Berea, Madison County, Kentucky, Sharp collected this version on May 21, 1917.

O Bangum would a hunting ride,
Cubby kye, cudda'
O bangum would a hunting ride,
Cuddal down
O Bangum would a hunting ride,
Sword and pistol by his side,
Cubby kye, cuddal down, killy quo quam.

There must have been more verses to this last one, although Bronson does not add any and he usually does if he finds more in Sharp's notes. I find that to be a very frustrating thing about Mr. Sharp, that often he would only print a verse or two. I understand about repetition and costs. But there are so many times when I wish I had the whole song from a particular person. I understand that in some cases they were recorded in his notes, but he chose not to publish the whole thing. Unfortunately his notes are a long way off and not easily accessible. I wonder if anyone will ever publish any more of his Amercian materials.

All four of these songs are reprinted in Bronson's Volume I, of his book on the tunes of the Child ballads.