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2007 Ewan MacColl Bio - Class Act

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Charley Noble 15 Dec 09 - 11:40 AM
MGM·Lion 15 Dec 09 - 02:55 PM
MGM·Lion 06 Dec 15 - 05:13 AM
The Sandman 06 Dec 15 - 05:39 PM
The Sandman 07 Dec 15 - 04:24 PM
Jorrox 26 Jan 16 - 01:02 PM
The Sandman 26 Jan 16 - 01:16 PM
Jim Carroll 26 Jan 16 - 01:31 PM
Jorrox 26 Jan 16 - 01:50 PM
GUEST,jon bartlett 26 Jan 16 - 06:42 PM
MGM·Lion 27 Jan 16 - 03:51 AM
GUEST,Jon Bartlett 27 Jan 16 - 06:18 AM
GeoffLawes 07 Apr 16 - 04:18 AM
GeoffLawes 12 Apr 16 - 03:51 AM
Jim Carroll 12 Apr 16 - 04:14 AM
The Sandman 12 Apr 16 - 03:05 PM
The Sandman 23 Jan 18 - 11:53 AM
Jim Carroll 23 Jan 18 - 12:24 PM
The Sandman 23 Jan 18 - 03:35 PM
The Sandman 23 Jan 18 - 03:38 PM
Jim Carroll 23 Jan 18 - 06:23 PM
The Sandman 24 Jan 18 - 10:28 AM
Vic Smith 24 Jan 18 - 12:36 PM
Jim Carroll 24 Jan 18 - 01:26 PM
GUEST,Hootenanny 24 Jan 18 - 02:43 PM
Jim Carroll 24 Jan 18 - 07:05 PM
The Sandman 25 Jan 18 - 05:33 AM
Jim Carroll 25 Jan 18 - 05:55 AM
GUEST,Hootenanny 25 Jan 18 - 06:49 AM
GUEST,CJ 25 Jan 18 - 07:09 AM
Vic Smith 25 Jan 18 - 08:07 AM
Vic Smith 25 Jan 18 - 08:19 AM
MickyMan 25 Jan 18 - 11:38 AM
GUEST 25 Jan 18 - 02:09 PM
Jim Carroll 25 Jan 18 - 03:25 PM
Vic Smith 25 Jan 18 - 05:05 PM
GUEST,CJ 25 Jan 18 - 05:23 PM
keberoxu 25 Jan 18 - 07:02 PM
GUEST,paperback 25 Jan 18 - 07:59 PM
GUEST,Modette 26 Jan 18 - 03:30 AM
Jim Carroll 26 Jan 18 - 03:49 AM
GUEST,Jim Bainbridge 27 Jan 18 - 05:37 AM
Jim Carroll 27 Jan 18 - 06:32 AM
The Sandman 27 Jan 18 - 11:16 AM
Jim Carroll 27 Jan 18 - 11:31 AM
The Sandman 27 Jan 18 - 02:25 PM
GUEST,jim bainbridge 29 Jan 18 - 02:08 PM
Jim Carroll 29 Jan 18 - 02:41 PM
The Sandman 01 Feb 18 - 05:01 PM
GUEST,jim bainbridge 03 Feb 18 - 05:51 PM
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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: Charley Noble
Date: 15 Dec 09 - 11:40 AM

Evidently, with the exception of Curmudgeon, no one who had posted in this thread had read the biography or reported on the experience if they had. I find that observation difficult to understand given the energy that was expressed or at least released in this thread.

I'm finally plowing through my copy, and have made it through to the late 1940's. I find the discussion of political theatre very interesting and I may have to read Joan Littlewood's book as well.

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 15 Dec 09 - 02:55 PM

--- one of the main problems of the revival is that we haven't attracted critics of any great note. Literature had Leavis, Tillyard and Wilson Knight - we had Karl Dallas and Colin Irwin. Both nice guys apparently - but neither of them inclined to challenge whatever load of balls singers were talking that week - at least not in print --- WLD 4 Oct 07 03.53

Let me belatedly and immodestly say that an incomplete picture is provided here.

-Michael Grosvenor Myer- sometime regular columnist for Folk Review; folk record, concert, festival critic, The Guardian; folk book critic, The Times = &c &c &c — 'Not to know me argues yourself unknown' (Shakespeare)


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 06 Dec 15 - 05:13 AM

'Not to know me argues yourself unknown' (Shakespeare)

Not Shakespeare -- Milton: Paradise Lost IV 830

Sorry!

As I never tire of saying : "Accuracy matters".

≈M≈


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: The Sandman
Date: 06 Dec 15 - 05:39 PM

As I never tire of saying : "Accuracy matters".
Jim Carroll, take note "Accuracy matters........" This includes reading others posts accurately.


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: The Sandman
Date: 07 Dec 15 - 04:24 PM

MacColl was a fine songwriter who gave a lot of thought to his presentation of songs.


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: Jorrox
Date: 26 Jan 16 - 01:02 PM

I got the book for xmas and just finished it. I enjoyed it very much as a fact finding mission but it added little to my understanding of his music. I don't think the author is a musician so it's down to us to dig into the music on places like this. I've had a good read through the old threads and there's a lot of good reading there. This site is a great resource now.

Reading the book sent me running to Spotify, Folkways, Topic and here to be a bit of research.

I was pretty well familiar with his written songs but not so much his own recorded versions. I have to say I like his own versions of his own songs.

What I didn't realise was just how many trad ballads he seems to have been the first to record. There must be as many national repertoire ballads to come via MacColl as there are his written material.

The Clancys, Dubliners, Ian Campbell, and lots more have a large amount of 'trad' MacColl in their songbooks. For their 3rd album, and the first to have songs from outside of Ireland, The Clancys blagged a good few songs from a just-issued Folkways MacColl & Seeger LP.

And it's a shame that efforts to discuss his music always resort to bickering about his other stuff. I *am* interested in reading about the Singers Club and the rights or wrongs of the Critics Group. But don't you think it's more important that the only recording of him singing Jamie Foyers has been out of print for years? And that most of his Topic 10" 78s have languished unheard for years.? That is a huge whole in the culture of these islands.


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: The Sandman
Date: 26 Jan 16 - 01:16 PM

But don't you think it's more important that the only recording of him singing Jamie Foyers has been out of print for years? And that most of his Topic 10" 78s have languished unheard for years.? That is a huge whole in the culture of these islands."
Yes, I agree.


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 26 Jan 16 - 01:31 PM

"What I didn't realise was just how many trad ballads he seems to have been the first to record."
137 Child Ballads, some in multiple versions
More than happy to help in any way I can J to give you access to his recordings - live and otherwise.
PM me
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: Jorrox
Date: 26 Jan 16 - 01:50 PM

Thanks Jim. I've enjoyed reading your words on these threads. I will do that very thing, ta.


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: GUEST,jon bartlett
Date: 26 Jan 16 - 06:42 PM

MGM Lion, have you published any longer pieces? And where might I find them?

Jon Bartlett


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 27 Jan 16 - 03:51 AM

Thank you for your enquiry, Jon. 'Longer' than what, exactly? I was regular contributor of the Tailpiece in Folk Review in the 1970s, & also wrote there a few folk-themed parodies of known writers -- Conan Doyle, Damon Runyon, et al, & won some of their limerick & clerihew competitions, all of which I collected and self-published under title "The Despair of Dime Zillion" - one or two copies on Amazon last time I looked. But I have never published a full-length book as such. I have always regretted that, tho I can write features & reviews & brief prose & verse take-offs &c, I was born without the true creative gene. Unlike my late first wife, who was novelist & poet & biographer & critical writer, whom, if interested, you will find in Wikipedia under --Valerie Grosvenor Myer--.

≈Michael≈


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: GUEST,Jon Bartlett
Date: 27 Jan 16 - 06:18 AM

Thanks for this, Michael. I shall PM you in a day or so.

Jon Bartlett


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: GeoffLawes
Date: 07 Apr 16 - 04:18 AM

In case someone would like it . This is very cheap.
Journeyman: The Autobiography Of Ewan Maccoll Price: £ 1.43Shipping: £ 2.27 Within United Kingdom

LINK to Abe Books listing
There are many other Ewan MacColl related books on the same listing but none as cheap as this.


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: GeoffLawes
Date: 12 Apr 16 - 03:51 AM

That copy seems to have been snapped up but the next best deal is still a bargain, I think.

Price: £ 2.99-£ 2.70 Within United Kingdom ( Same link as above)


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 12 Apr 16 - 04:14 AM

Thanks for that Geoff - some gems among that lot.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: The Sandman
Date: 12 Apr 16 - 03:05 PM

Ewan MacColl, his influence can still be seen in the UK Folk Revival, his influence can be seen here today in County Cork, mainly the singing of his songs and indirectly in the resung repertoire of Luke Kelly.


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: The Sandman
Date: 23 Jan 18 - 11:53 AM

i have just read journeyman, an interesting read, very occasionally Ewan pontificates on music and shows his lack of knowledge, but on the whole a very good read


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 23 Jan 18 - 12:24 PM

"Ewan pontificates on music and shows his lack of knowledge, b"
Should have come to you to put him straight, shouldn't he Dick !!!
Oh dear
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: The Sandman
Date: 23 Jan 18 - 03:35 PM

Yes Jim,I would have put him straight, if he had asked, but Iwould consider it to have been rude unless he had asked
Ewan was a fine songwriter and singer but was not much of a musician, Peggy is a fine musician., and was responsible for most of the musical arrangements
Jim when will you stop being so defensive about Ewan. an example of ewan bollocks is page 306," the way of holding the fiddle is different"
no, Ewan not necessarily, the classical hold does not prevent a musician from being a good fiddler, what it does is allow the fiddler to play in third position in the style of n boyle, if he desires it also just like good posture in perfomance for singers allows the fiddle to perform without physical problems, this does not mean that fiddlers who hold the fiddle in a non classical way will inevitably have problems some do, some do not, one example who has is Liz Carroll, but there are others who have not, what is important with fiddle playing[regardless of the genre of the music] is how you hold the bow to enable good wrist movement. Ewan was pontificating on a subject he was ill informed about.


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: The Sandman
Date: 23 Jan 18 - 03:38 PM

however what he says about programming and other aspects of performing[ balance of repertoire is very good


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 23 Jan 18 - 06:23 PM

"Yes Jim,I would have put him straight,"
Get help Dick
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: The Sandman
Date: 24 Jan 18 - 10:28 AM

Jim it is you that needs help, please do not misquote, my quote was
Yes Jim,I would have put him straight, if he had asked, but Iwould consider it to have been rude unless he had asked.
you are constantly misquoting and insulting people on this forum , get help yourself


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: Vic Smith
Date: 24 Jan 18 - 12:36 PM

you are constantly misquoting and insulting people on this forum


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 24 Jan 18 - 01:26 PM

The phantom thumb strikes again - and then rides off into the sunset
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: GUEST,Hootenanny
Date: 24 Jan 18 - 02:43 PM

Riding off into the sunset?

Sounds like the guy who accused me of being dishonest but has yet to show me where. Despite two requests.


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 24 Jan 18 - 07:05 PM

"Despite two requests."
You've had your answer twice Hoot
A dyslexic, a megalomaniac and a typo-stalker - three for the price of one!
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: The Sandman
Date: 25 Jan 18 - 05:33 AM

is it necessary to turn every discussion in to perpetual puerility?.


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 25 Jan 18 - 05:55 AM

You talking to yourself again Dick
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: GUEST,Hootenanny
Date: 25 Jan 18 - 06:49 AM

Jim,

You seem to be a little confused, I didn't ask for you CV. But it does explain a lot.


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: GUEST,CJ
Date: 25 Jan 18 - 07:09 AM

No one is perfect.

MacColl, like all of us, had many flaws.

Refusing to even accept that basic fact makes so many of your arguments instantly questionable, Jim, as we are all SO aware of how heavily you side with Ewan, who was a mere mortal. It's similar to a football fan refusing to believe any criticism of their own beloved team, despite them languishing mid-table and at times being beaten by teams who on paper would appear weaker.

Queue an arrogant response from Jim.


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: Vic Smith
Date: 25 Jan 18 - 08:07 AM

You would think that someone who has read a statement about himself like -

you are constantly misquoting and insulting people on this forum

would at least pause to reflect that there may be something to consider in that way he words his posts here, but no, three posts later, he goes with -

A dyslexic, a megalomaniac and a typo-stalker - three for the price of one!

What does this further insult achieve but serve as further evidence of Dick's claim of this poster's sustained policy of defamation of those who have the temerity to disagree with him.
I am sure that I am not the only person who comes to Mudcat for reasoned discussion, perhaps lightened when things get a bit heavy with some humour. Yet when this person enters the discussion, anyone else who posts risks the chance of receiving the sort of bile encountered in my quotation from him above.


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: Vic Smith
Date: 25 Jan 18 - 08:19 AM

And as for typo-stalker, I was giving the person who insulted me in this way the huge benefit of the doubt in calling his lapse a "typo" when it was clear that he did not realise what a huge mistake it was not to know the difference between the Venerable Bede, the Northumbrian monk of the 7th/8th century and his rendering of this as the Veritable Bede!

Of course, it could have been his keyboard not interpreting his typing accurately again.....


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: MickyMan
Date: 25 Jan 18 - 11:38 AM

My voice recognition just entered "Ewan" as "You Nguyen".    I thought that was quite serendipitous, since MacColl was an undesputable "You Nguyen" man from the get-go!


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: GUEST
Date: 25 Jan 18 - 02:09 PM

seem to recall that in the classic book '1066 and all that' the early Christian saint in this thread was called the Venomous Bead....... bit of light relief from the 'puerility' currently on offer?


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 25 Jan 18 - 03:25 PM

"MacColl, like all of us, had many flaws."
He had indeed, knew him long enough to observe them up close
I have little interest in what people thought of MacColl
It does concern me that, of all the people I knew in the revival, he did the most work on making sense of folk song and passing on what he learned
He did this within a group though mutual discussion and sharing ideas one with the other - a process made possible by he and Peg throwing open their home to others for one night a week over a period of nearly ten years - I was lucky enough to be part of that for a short time.
As far as I know, nobody was doing anything similar and few attached importance to folk songs as an art form
That, like everything MacColl did, didn't always work, but the process was recorded and remains as a body of unique work (nearly 200 tapes worth)
I have the recordings and have been trying to raise interest in this work for several years - as with our recordings of Walter Pardon et al, there is no interest in this project in Britain so we have finally got Limerick University to agree to house it in their Wold Music Department and possibly make it available to the general public by putting it on line.
I've long given up any hope of holding a rational discussion on MacColl's work without first having to scramble over a garbage mountain of army records and name change (this latter often from Robert Zimmermann or John Pandrich fans)
"Venerable Bede, the Northumbrian monk of the 7th/8th century and his rendering of this as the Veritable Bede!"
If you care to check the Roud book thread you will find that I have quoted the name at least three times, using the correct spelling - but we mustn't let that spoil you fun, must we?
My once respectful memories of you have been wiped away by your childishly snide behaviour of late Vic
Only someone bereft of intelligent argument resorts to typos as a substitute for argument and discussion
Up to now I have never insulted you - when you pointed out the pressure broadside writers worked under I mistakenly (apparently) took it you were saying something I have always said - that they were poor songwriters because of the speed they were forced to work to earn their pennies
It was never a deliberate attempt to misinterpret what you said, but it would mean a climb-down for you to accept that, so I don't hold out too much hope and, truth to tell, I no longer care
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: Vic Smith
Date: 25 Jan 18 - 05:05 PM

but we mustn't let that spoil you fun, must we?

But it was a funny mistake! I didn't want it to be anything other than a lighter moment. If I had made such a slip and someone had pointed it out, I would have laughed at my own error and probably posted something else to continue the joke. Instead, the perpetrator, rather than seeing the funny side of his own error - the two words are quite close, after all - resorted to insult, which in my book is rather sad!

Up to now I have never insulted you... [Objection, M'Lud- I would like at this point out that there have been a number of such occurances, for instance, I give in evidence Exhibit A. The accused wrote "You really have gone over to the dark side, Vic." This was for a posting which he disgreed with. I won't waste the court's time with the numerous other examples. One only has to look two lines above the 'no insult' claim to read "your childishly snide behaviour of late Vic" and this, your honour, I would submit that a reasonable man would regard as an insult.] ... when you pointed out the pressure broadside writers worked under I mistakenly (apparently) took it you were saying something I have always said - that they were poor songwriters because of the speed they were forced to work to earn their pennies.
It was never a deliberate attempt to misinterpret what you said, but it would mean a climb-down for you to accept that, so I don't hold out too much hope.

In response to this, I need to draw the attention of members of the jury to the statement of my learned friend, Lord Miles of Ballydehob when he stated "you are constantly misquoting and insulting people on this forum" which turns our attention from the 'insulting' element of the charge to the 'misquoting' part.
In my post about broadside writers, I pointed out that the writers of the rather tiresome prose broadsides claiming to be last speech of some poor felon standing on the gallows had to finish their work quickly without time to correct any errors or to polish their words before the prisoner was swinging at the end of the rope. I likened the 'last speech of...' broadsides to football programmes; both had to be sold before the crowd dispersed (and please note 'speech' writers rather than 'songwriters' as was stated by the accused. I made no claim about the quality of their writing 'poor' or otherwise.
I now 'climb-down' not from the gallows, but from this thread but 'I don't hold out too much hope' that the light-hearted banter of this response will be received in the manner it was presented.

Finally, may I point out another slip - Guest CJ wrote - 25 Jan 18 - 07:09 - Queue an arrogant response from Jim. when he clearly meant "Cue an arrogant..." etc. I wonder if CJ - if he responds - will see the funny side or return with an insult!


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: GUEST,CJ
Date: 25 Jan 18 - 05:23 PM

Yes Vic, I noticed that too, but was typing on my phone and couldn't work out how to correct it. TBH, i wanted to delete the entire line, it was too catty.

I like Mudcat. I barely post, but use it as a resource frequently. It saddens me when the more researched members of the community fall into ridiculously entrenched mud-slinging.


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: keberoxu
Date: 25 Jan 18 - 07:02 PM

"New," my foot --
it was new eleven years ago?


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: GUEST,paperback
Date: 25 Jan 18 - 07:59 PM

[precious] Jim, men say iron sharpens iron and in this you are indomitable and as a junior will presume to also say a kind word never broke anyone's mouth [\precious]


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: GUEST,Modette
Date: 26 Jan 18 - 03:30 AM

I love the idea of a 'Wold Music Department'? Is its head called 'Chalkie'?


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 26 Jan 18 - 03:49 AM

"But it was a funny mistake! I didn't want it to be anything other than a lighter moment. "
Sure you did Vic!!
That's why you continued to make a point of it right up to the present
It's an old ploy on this forum - "when in doubt, find a typo"
"perpetrator," definition "a person who carries out a harmful, illegal, or immoral act."
"I would like at this point out that there have been a number of such occurrences"
That was a long, and sometimes quite distressing thread
Being an unashamed fan of courtroom dramas I have become fascinated by the behaviour of shyster lawyers who attempt to destroy the credibility of witnesses by presenting their evidence out of context
Because the subject is as important to me is it is I was fairly careful not to blow my top, as I occasionally do - there were a few lapses when things became personal and nasty -I never resorted to personal attacks, but others did - one individual in particular - "attention seeking", "politically driven", "no support", "if you want to criticise, go and write your own book", "you's never written one. I've written three"... and a pm that virtually descended to hate mail
In true dramatic form, you selected and my lapses and ignored the rest - all good stuff for 'Law and Order UK'. pretty shabby way of debating.
You've done the same here
"A dyslexic, a megalomaniac and a typo-stalker - three for the price of one! "
Hoot persists in demanding an answer three times to the question he keeps asking - maybe sarcasm is the lowest form of with, but it's handy occasionally
Dick - well, we've all seen how Dick behaves occasionally - I've been threatened with violence by him in the past
And you - hardly the hard-done-by victim with the behaviour I have described
As I say, typos are often handy refuges when there is nothing else
Finished here I think Vic
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: GUEST,Jim Bainbridge
Date: 27 Jan 18 - 05:37 AM

occasionally dipping into mudcat as I do, discussions about MacColl are amazingly vitriolic.
My opinion of him doesn't matter, and Mr Carroll's humourless tunnel vision about the man will not provoke a reply from me.
It just reminds me of the time in the sixties when Sunderland FC (benighted then as today!) signed the inspirational Rangers player Jim Baxter.
Local fans saw him as the saviour of the club, and could see no fault in his play. Eddie MacIntyre (Jarrow raconteur and singer) was heard to say in the middle of a football discussion in the pub...

'That Baxter, he's only got one fault'

   This was greeted by a stunned silence- was his fault a poor tackling technique, slow reactions, or a suspect hamstring? Surely the new hero was perfect in every way?

After a suitable interval, Eddie said- 'Oh yes, he has one fault, he once had a filling in his back left molar....

Thought I'd share that with you- Eddie is still active on Tyneside, and can be seen in action on YouTube- look up 'Doreen Henderson's 90th birthday party'


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 27 Jan 18 - 06:32 AM

Why do you - or does anybody do that Jim?
I've made my point about MacColl - he did a mass of research into folk song and took a day a week out of his life to work with younger and less experienced singers while the rest of the superstars got on with their careers
THat's the MacColl I knew for twenty years
Three decades after his death, people are still digging him up to give him a kicking - which says what needs to be said about both him and them
I have no interest in canonising MacColl, even if I went in for that sort of thing or believed he deserved it.
He left behind a body of work that, in my opinion, needs to be discussed and might, just might, help sort out the shambolic revival we are left with
Apart from the personal pleasure I still get from his singing, and the work he left behind, that is my attitude to a dead friend
The sick necrophobia that prevents such a discussion from taking place represents everything that went wrong with an important and extremely enjoyable part of my life
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: The Sandman
Date: 27 Jan 18 - 11:16 AM

we are trying to discuss his work including his failings as well as his good points, but we are then insulted and misquoted by you.


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 27 Jan 18 - 11:31 AM

"but we are then insulted and misquoted by you you are not Dick - you are trying to show how clever you are
"very occasionally Ewan pontificates on music and shows his lack of knowledge,"
What did you think of the book, (apart from MacColl's failings, of course)?
Personally, I found it a little disappointing - not because of any 'lack of knowledge' but because it was written in a hurry and at a particularly bad period of his life
I feel it would have been far better if it had been written before The Critics Group broke up, or some years later, when the effects of the break-up had died down.
There are much better autobiographical accounts of Ewan and even better biographical ones, mainly in sound form and partial - 'Parsley, Sage and Politics' is pretty good, and the six part series recorded in Ireland is even better
Jim


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: The Sandman
Date: 27 Jan 18 - 02:25 PM

I f you bothered to calm down and read my posts properly you would be aware that i had already given my opinion and now i quote
I am reading this and also reading journeyman , which i find a more interesting read, i have admiration for peggy as a performer, but i dont think this biography does her justice in fact it has in my opinion a negative tone and a critical carping flavour. so Jim ifound it an interesting read.no i did not find it disapoiinting .
it seems honest and explains a lot about his back groun
d and his approach to performing and songwriting, it is IMO, good. he talks openly revealing his good points and his flaws which include his lack of musicianship.
he thought a lot about performance, he analysed and intellectualised folk music, the plus side of which is the legacy of fine songs he wrote. I would recommend this book as a good read


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: GUEST,jim bainbridge
Date: 29 Jan 18 - 02:08 PM

Don't think you quite got it, Jim- yer man MacColl certainly contributed greatly to the 'folk revival' but really there is a bit more to it! Even Jim Baxter wasn't perfect- that was the point!!!

I went to the Singers' club a few times in the sixties, although never sang or played- I wasn't asked- it wasn't that sort of place, was it? We were there to pay homage to the saviours of the tradition, not to take part in it.
I respect the songs EM wrote, many were and are, excellent, but he wasn't really the man of the people his political views would demand. I found his approach analytical and the club itself to be extremely self-satisfied and worthy, unlike the other London clubs of the time, mostly with a very different approach, the best of which stressed enjoyment and involvement but with no lack of quality-

   in particular the Fox at Islington- Bob Davenport & Co-   BOO!


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 29 Jan 18 - 02:41 PM

I've said my piece on MacColl as an individual - I had twenty years to reach the conclusions I did, including a period when I lived with them while I was looking for a home and job
I'll go by that rather than a few visits to the Singers Club any day
Perssonal tastes don't enter into any of this
Can I just remind you that, some time ago, when I related a couple of personal experiences (rather than spiteful folklore legends) describing the nastiness of your own particular hero, you threw a hissy-fit that anybody should speak ill of such a hero of the people.
You appear to reserve a right for yourself that you are not prepared to extend to others.
Another occasion when MacColl's work becomes a no-go area
Ah well!! ]It's not me that doesn't get it
Let's leave it there
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: The Sandman
Date: 01 Feb 18 - 05:01 PM

yes leave it and go away.
this book is excellent and i am rereading it, his comments on performing are particularly good ,i thought it interesting that he and peggy actually practised forgetting part of a ballad and then ad libbing, what a brilliant idea. the people that cannot get away from reading from texts should take note


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Subject: RE: New Ewan MacColl Biography
From: GUEST,jim bainbridge
Date: 03 Feb 18 - 05:51 PM

I don't intend to be drawn into another pointless argument about EM v BD but don't know where the 'hissy fit' came from- - shows you have a lively imagination- you seem very sensitive about that one incident! origin somewhere in that tunnel vision I suppose?

Knowledgable as EM was, my first impression of him was when he & Peggy Seeger came to our Marsden Inn club over 50 years ago and only entered the crowded club room to do their 2x 45 mins, showing absolutely NO interest in hearing the locals or even talking to them. I've never forgotten that....


BD has his faults, have known him long enough to know that but you seem to think EM had none, it's quite clear! I do recall the Singers club well & it was boring as hell..., enough to put people off for life- bit like your posts.
& hello Dick, it may be you find his book interesting & I can't contradict that, but I think if I had a copy, I'd put it under that shoogly table in our kitchen...
Buenas Noches   Jim


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