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Lyr Req: No My Love Not I / When Fishes Fly / Rue

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PRETTY LITTLE MISS


Related thread:
Chords to Some do call it rue (5)


Phil Edwards 15 Sep 08 - 10:43 AM
GUEST,leeneia 15 Sep 08 - 10:51 AM
Snuffy 15 Sep 08 - 07:16 PM
Michael 16 Sep 08 - 04:53 AM
The Villan 16 Sep 08 - 06:15 AM
The Doctor 17 Sep 08 - 06:18 AM
GUEST,Shimrod 18 Sep 08 - 05:49 AM
The Doctor 18 Sep 08 - 06:34 AM
Jim Dixon 06 Oct 08 - 02:37 PM
Steve Gardham 06 Oct 08 - 04:23 PM
Steve Gardham 06 Oct 08 - 04:26 PM
GUEST,tom bliss 07 Oct 08 - 08:30 AM
Jim Dixon 08 Oct 08 - 11:56 AM
GUEST,tom 08 Oct 08 - 03:13 PM
My guru always said 06 Dec 11 - 05:56 PM
Mo the caller 07 Dec 11 - 05:25 AM
katlaughing 07 Dec 11 - 02:44 PM
Mysha 07 Dec 11 - 04:55 PM
Mysha 22 Jul 16 - 10:11 PM
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Subject: There's an earworm in my father's garden
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 15 Sep 08 - 10:43 AM

This afternoon I was listening to Mary Humphreys's No My Love, Not I on Music Well, and fell to wondering why I always misremember the lyrics. One line in particular - if I sing the chorus, it always comes out as

"There's a worm in my father's garden, and some do call it rue"

instead of 'herb'. Which makes no sense at all, as well as not being a very pleasant image.

The mystery was solved when I remembered this. Some eerie similarities, I think you'll agree. I wonder if the song originated as a tribute to No My Love, Not I - perhaps composed by someone who hadn't actually heard it but had met someone who raved about it:

"Brilliant song, got a great chorus, it goes... hang on... something, something, There's a... yes, that's it,
There's a er... la la la la garden,
And erm... da da da da rue

Think it's 'rue'. Something 'ooh', definitely. Great song."

(Yes, I have got more important things to do, why do you ask?)


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Subject: RE: There's an earworm in my father's garden
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 15 Sep 08 - 10:51 AM

1. You're stuck with the worm. It isn't going to go away.

2. Change the line to 'it nips the leaves of rue.'

Ta da! Folk process.


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Subject: RE: There's an earworm in my father's garden
From: Snuffy
Date: 15 Sep 08 - 07:16 PM

There's a worm at the bottom of the garden
And his name is Wiggerly Woo
There's a worm at the bottom of the garden
And all that he can do
Is wiggle all night and wiggle all day
The folks round here they all do say
There's a worm at the bottom of the garden
And his name is Wiggerly Woo.

(might be wriggle, not wiggle)


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Subject: RE: There's an earworm in my father's garden
From: Michael
Date: 16 Sep 08 - 04:53 AM

There's a donut in Granny's greenhouse.

Just thought you might like to know.

Mike


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Subject: RE: There's an earworm in my father's garden
From: The Villan
Date: 16 Sep 08 - 06:15 AM

Its a lovely song. So here is the link to When Fishes Fly - Mary Humphreys & Anahata


You need to scroll the songs on the right hand side until you come to When Fishes Fly


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Subject: RE: There's an earworm in my father's garden
From: The Doctor
Date: 17 Sep 08 - 06:18 AM

Mary Humphreys is responsible for putting these verses together, and for the information that rue was regarded, certainly in the 19th century, as an abortifacient. Tom Bliss adapted Mary's version and recorded it on his CD Mixed Moss, adding that in the days before bird migration was properly understood swallows were believed to be immortal. Trio Threlfall on their latest CD, Sweet Nightingale, have used the same sources and come up with a slightly different version again. But which ever way you take it it's a very good and attractive song.


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Subject: RE: There's an earworm in my father's garden
From: GUEST,Shimrod
Date: 18 Sep 08 - 05:49 AM

The song has an attractive tune - but the text is anything but attractive! A young man has his 'wicked way' with a young woman and then, when she gets pregnant, abandons her to a life of begging ...

Interestingly, there is a related song in the 'Foggy Dew - More English Folk Songs from the Hammond & Gardiner Mss., ed. Frank Purslow' (EFDSS, 1974) collection called 'The Newfoundland Sailor'. In this song the eponymous sailor arrives in London and meets an attractive young woman. They have an affair and he asks her to marry him and return to Newfoundland with him. She replies:

"If I were to marry I should be much to blame,
My friends and relations all would me disdain;
You are of such low degree, and I'm so very high,
Do you think that I'd marry you?
No, no my love, no, no etc."

After the sailor has returned home she discovers that she is pregnant and writes to him asking him to return. He reminds her of her previous scorn and suggests that she resort to begging.

This is a much more nuanced song of sexual politics - although neither protagonist emerges with much credit!


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Subject: RE: There's an earworm in my father's garden
From: The Doctor
Date: 18 Sep 08 - 06:34 AM

The verse quoted by Shimrod forms part of Trio Threlfall's version, but sung by the man. But having said that I believe Mary Humphreys changed the gender for her version anyway. The general implication of all three versions I know is that they sleep together, which was much more acceptable in the past if they were engaged, but then refuses the final step of marriage. On finding she's pregnant she has second thoughts, but his response is that she's missed her chance. Perhaps still not totally edifying, but not quite as reprehensible.


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Subject: Lyr Add: NO MY LOVE NOT I / WHEN FISHES FLY
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 06 Oct 08 - 02:37 PM

Lyrics and title copied from Mary Humphreys and Anahata's web site and checked against the sound file at sound file at the Mary Humphreys & Anahata' MySpace page (where it is called WHEN FISHES FLY).


NO MY LOVE, NOT I (WHEN FISHES FLY)

CHORUS: When fishes fly and swallows die, young men will prove true.
There's a herb in my father's garden and some do call it rue.

1. As I walked out one morning, it was in the month of May.
There I spied a fair young maid a-gathering of sweet may.
I asked of her to bed with me—I'd marry her by and by—
But the answer she gave to me was, "Oh, no, my love, not I."

2. So we walked and we talked together till at length we did agree
To sit down on a mossy bank beneath a shady tree.
The blackbird and the sweet song thrush flew in and out the bush,
And the song they sang in chorus was "Oh, no, my love, not I."

3. Now twenty weeks being over, she grew thick around the waist.
This poor girl she grew pale and wan. Her stays they wouldn't lace.
Her gown it wouldn't pin nor her apron strings won't tie,
And she rued the day she said to him, "No, my love, not I."

4. So she wrote a letter to her true love to come immediately.
The answer that he sent her was "No, my love, not I.
Supposing I should come to you, on me they'd put the blame.
My parents would be angry and my friends would me disdain.

5. "And all the very best thing I can advise you for to do
Is to take your baby on your back. Begging you should go,
And when that you grow weary, you can sit you down and cry,
And think on the day you said to me, "Oh no, my love, not I."

[Performed by Mary Humphreys & Anahata on their album "Sharp Practice," Wild Goose CD 312, 2003.]


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: No My Love Not I / When Fishes Fly
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 06 Oct 08 - 04:23 PM

'O No My Love not I' is a widely printed broadside ballad c1780-1860. It varies quite a lot. An 11st version The Forsaking Maid's Resolution appears in The Hunter's Garland BL 11621 c 5 11.2 but other versions range from 5 sts. I think 'The Newfoundland Sailor' which has sts in common is a later offshoot. Off the top of my head Mary's version is pretty standard with a chorus made of bits of commonplaces.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: No My Love Not I / When Fishes Fly
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 06 Oct 08 - 04:26 PM

I should add there at least 4 different printings in the Bodleian, mostly under NMLNI.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: No My Love Not I / When Fishes Fly
From: GUEST,tom bliss
Date: 07 Oct 08 - 08:30 AM

I picked up on the way the refrian in the 'letter' verse sounds like an instruction, when sung by a male, and changed the last verse to suit. the 'original' lyric suggests the man is also regrtful, and I wanted to reflect that not ALL men are callous bastards!

my lyrics and a full mp3 on my website. (cant do clicky on this phone). www.tombliss.co.uk

tom


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Subject: Lyr Add: RUE (Tom Bliss)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 08 Oct 08 - 11:56 AM

Here's Tom Bliss' version, copied from his web site:
(You can play a sound file on that page.)

RUE
Tom Bliss

1. As I walked out one morning, all early in the day,
I spied a fair young maid a-walking, gathering sweet may.
I begged of her to bed with me, to marry if she do.
There's a herb in my father's garden, and some they call it rue.

CHORUS: When fishes fly and swallows die, young men will prove true.
There's a herb in my father's garden, and some do call it rue.

2. We walked and we talked together, till at length we did agree
To lay upon a bank of ivy, 'neath a shady tree.
The song thrush and the blackbird, in and out the bush they flew.
There's a herb in my father's garden, and some do call it rue.

3. When twenty weeks are over, and her stays no longer tie,
She writes to me a letter, but to my shame I reply:
"My family would have none of me, if I should marry you."
There's a herb in my father's garden, and some do call it rue.

4. So maybe she went begging with our baby on her hip,
Or maybe to the old wise woman, medic for to sip.
If I could have my time again, there's much that I'd not do.
There's a herb in my father's garden, and some do call it rue.


[Recorded on "Mixed Moss," SLIP 009, 2005.]


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: No My Love Not I / When Fishes Fly / Rue
From: GUEST,tom
Date: 08 Oct 08 - 03:13 PM

lol! that's out of date, I must change it. my verse two actually reverts to Mary's version,

'lay apon a mossy bank'

but i'd toyed with ivy because it sounded better, and darker.

Cloudstreet heard the song at this stage, so their version does use the ivy line.

tom


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: No My Love Not I / When Fishes Fly / Rue
From: My guru always said
Date: 06 Dec 11 - 05:56 PM

I so enjoyed hearing Mary Humphreys singing this song that I took it up myself, a lovely version. But I always felt that there was a 'final' verse missing where the 'Young Man' gets his com'uppance. I was certain that he should be keel-hauled at least *grin*

So whenever I've introduced the song I have asked the audience to consider writing that 'final' verse and when I sang it at Herga FC during the UK launch of the 'This is Us' CD set I asked my usual request.

And I was delighted to find that my request has been successful! Mysha had travelled from his home in Holland to be at the launch to present his song 'Catalunya Spirit' and took my request to heart.

Following our discussions we have agreed on the following 'final' verse:

So she took her baby on her back; to his parents' home she came
They would disown the young man then... till she would bear his name
He begged of her to wed with him... a golden ring he'd buy
But all the answer she gave of him was, "Oh, no, my love, not I".

Thankyou Mysha!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: No My Love Not I / When Fishes Fly / Rue
From: Mo the caller
Date: 07 Dec 11 - 05:25 AM

Back to the OP. If you try singing the 'worm' words to the 'herb' tune you can easily slip from one to another.
Another good song ruined.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: No My Love Not I / When Fishes Fly / Rue
From: katlaughing
Date: 07 Dec 11 - 02:44 PM

MGAS, thanks for posting Mysha's verse. It's great.Well done, Mysha! I'd never heard the song until your rendition on the CD. It is infectious and I love it, esp. with you singing it!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: No My Love Not I / When Fishes Fly / Rue
From: Mysha
Date: 07 Dec 11 - 04:55 PM

Hi,

One small correction, and one comment:
- While I took a night bus from Holland to get to London, my home is actually in Frisia.
- I wrote these additional words so they might be sung. While it's kind to compliment me with them, I hope someone will bring these dead scribbles to life with their singing breath. Share it with us if you do.

Thanks,
                                                                  Mysha


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: No My Love Not I / When Fishes Fly / Rue
From: Mysha
Date: 22 Jul 16 - 10:11 PM

Hi,

Just to add that MGAS told me that she does indeed sing this version, and last year at Ely festival I've sung it as well. The dead scribbles have indeed come to life as a song.

Bye,
                                                                Mysha


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