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Lyr Req: ways of the traveller dying out

Desert Dancer 24 Sep 08 - 05:46 PM
MartinRyan 25 Sep 08 - 03:13 AM
tradpiper 25 Sep 08 - 06:12 AM
MartinRyan 25 Sep 08 - 06:28 AM
Wolfgang 25 Sep 08 - 08:11 AM
tradpiper 25 Sep 08 - 12:30 PM
MartinRyan 25 Sep 08 - 12:44 PM
tradpiper 25 Sep 08 - 12:58 PM
Tradsinger 25 Sep 08 - 02:18 PM
Desert Dancer 25 Sep 08 - 02:39 PM
Jim Carroll 25 Sep 08 - 05:21 PM
tradpiper 25 Sep 08 - 05:51 PM
Charley Noble 25 Sep 08 - 08:35 PM
Jim Carroll 26 Sep 08 - 03:02 AM
tradpiper 26 Sep 08 - 06:19 AM
MartinRyan 28 Sep 08 - 05:47 PM
GUEST,wheresthemamam 18 Nov 08 - 10:27 AM
MartinRyan 18 Nov 08 - 05:39 PM
Elmore 05 Jan 13 - 12:13 PM
Keith A of Hertford 05 Jan 13 - 12:33 PM
Elmore 05 Jan 13 - 05:26 PM
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Subject: Lyr Req: ways of the traveller dying out
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 24 Sep 08 - 05:46 PM

From the "Traditional singers altering songs?" thread, an inquiry and some replies, below.

~ Becky in Tucson

Subject: RE: Traditional singers altering songs?
From: tradpiper - PM
Date: 24 Sep 08 - 09:00 AM

Hi all. I am a traveller. I learnt many of my songs round the yog Iron. many from old cassettes, and from ballad books. With the digital age I can actually find the correct lyrics on-line, a great bonus.

So from my point of view I would do my very best to understand and reproduce the words and tune that i heard. I would not modify them , but try to be faithful to the original rendition that attracted me.

there is one particular song i have not got, and would really like to find. Its about the old ways of the traveller dying out. If that rings a bell, please contact me.

An amusing twist I found in a printed version of Spancil hill. the correct lyrics are; an old horse fair in county Clare' was rendered as ' a hairy ass fair ' I mean! this same version twisted the lyrics in other places as well.

i encountered many such changes over the years, too many to mention. and im sure i have contributed to this, with misheard lyrics passed on!!

Subject: RE: Traditional singers altering songs?
From: tradpiper - PM
Date: 24 Sep 08 - 04:55 PM

The song I am after, 'the old ways of the traveller are dyin'. I heard it once, . In the morning yer man had moved on. Its clearly a traditional travellers song. So were I to find the words written down, would I remember the melody he sung it to. ? To some extent.
I read music so I would hope to have the dots. So if I learnt it from the printed page, combined with my memory how would it go were I to meet him again and we sung it together?
Firstly I would merge with his singing. I would copy' phrasing, inflexion, and tone of voice, to blend in. So the version I sung before hand, would be the template, the ground upon which I would base my rendition. but its quite likely that there would be a number of different lyrics due to the different sources. I would of course ask him to tell me the words to write down. Of course a recording would be great, but that kind of thing was unavailable when I learnt many of my songs. it would be the words writ out and the melody remembered.

So come on !, anyone know the song? Its been bugging me the last , maybe 14yrs!

Some songs have missing verses, for some reason a verse is lost. Finding a missing verse is like gold dust to me, let alone a missing song.!


Subject: RE: Traditional singers altering songs?
From: curmudgeon - PM
Date: 24 Sep 08 - 05:17 PM

tradpiper - the only song that comes to mind from what you seek is "Freeborn Man" by Ewan MacColl - not trad, but now fifty years old.

"Winds of change are blowing,,, old ways are going,
Your travelling days will soon be over."


Subject: RE: Traditional singers altering songs?
From: GUEST,mg - PM
Date: 24 Sep 08 - 05:17 PM

It's not the Ewen Macoll one is it?

The buying and selling the old fortune telling

Fairwell to the tents and the old caravans
The tinker the gypsy the travelling man
..

You can tell I don't know it. Lots of people know it.

There's a bylaw to say you must go on your way
And another that says....


Subject: RE: Traditional singers altering songs?
From: Vic Smith - PM
Date: 24 Sep 08 - 05:21 PM

Tradpiper wrote:-
The song I am after, 'the old ways of the traveller are dyin'. I heard it once

Could the song that you are after be the one that starts:-

The old ways are changing you cannot deny
The day of the traveler's over
There's nowhere to gang and there's nowhere to bide
So farewell to the life of the rover.

in which case it is Ewan MacColl's Thirty Foot Trailer which is available on this site at
http://www.mudcat.org/@displaysong.cfm?SongID=2359


Subject: RE: Traditional singers altering songs?
From: Tradsinger - PM
Date: 24 Sep 08 - 05:23 PM

It's "The Thirty Foot Trailer" by Ewan Macoll. You can find the words easily on the Internet plus various versions on Youtube. Let us know if this is the song you are looking for.

Tradsinger


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: ways of the traveller dying out
From: MartinRyan
Date: 25 Sep 08 - 03:13 AM

Thirty Foot Trailer it is, alright. Very popular in Ireland.

The "hairy ass fair in the County Clare in a place they call Spancelhill" is from Pecker Dunne's Sullivan's John

Regards


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: ways of the traveller dying out
From: tradpiper
Date: 25 Sep 08 - 06:12 AM

Ok, of course, my mistake. great song , shame it only has three verses. A great favorite... of course!

tradsinger, i couldn't find any vsn on you tube.... i will check again, its also know as the Aold ways are dying is it? I just found a vinyl of Ewans album and a cd of 'the travelling people' so I will work away at it from there. What a man eh? I had vaguely heard his name mentioned before but now i find that he wrote quite a few of the songs I sing! Im looking forward to hearing more of his stuff.Please excuse my ignorance! Many of 'my' ballads were learnt from friends on the road, sources were never asked!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: ways of the traveller dying out
From: MartinRyan
Date: 25 Sep 08 - 06:28 AM

tradpiper

You're welcome!

In fact, there are more verses to Sullivan's John - though you don't often hear them. I'm not sure if we've dug 'em out before - I'll have a look.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: ways of the traveller dying out
From: Wolfgang
Date: 25 Sep 08 - 08:11 AM

Tradpiper,

the song was written for the "Radio Ballad No. 8: The Traveling People" which is now available on CD. It has some more very good songs in it including interviews with Travelers ("I Am Tired Of Always Having To Shift...") and "good" citizens ("I Mean We're Fed Up With Gypsies Living In Our Area..."). Some of the other songs by MacColl on this CD:

Go, move, shift ("Born in the middle of an afternoon...")
Terror time ("Where do you go and where do you stay...")
Traveling People ("I'm a freeborn man of the traveling people...")

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: ways of the traveller dying out
From: tradpiper
Date: 25 Sep 08 - 12:30 PM

More verses to Sullivan John!! Now that's something I would like to see!!
Hang on, ddnt pecker Dunne write that song? So its not old horse fair but the other line?!? Hmm, how sure are you of that? Maybe he wrote both of the lines, for different audiences? Pecker certainly claims to have written it and I'm not about to doubt his word... what say ye?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: ways of the traveller dying out
From: MartinRyan
Date: 25 Sep 08 - 12:44 PM

I know that I've heard a few extra verses (to Sullivan's John) occasionally over the years - most recently at some stage this summer. Can't find them on line at the moment but I'll make enquiries over the weekend.

Regards


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Subject: Lyr Add: SULLIVAN'S JOHN
From: tradpiper
Date: 25 Sep 08 - 12:58 PM

this is the version I have;

O Sullivan's John to the road you've gone
    far away from your native home.
You've gone with the tinker's daughter
    for along the road to roam.
O Sullivan's John you won't stick it long
    'till your belly will soon get slack.
Up along the old road, with a mighty load.
    and your toolbox on your back.

There's an old Jill from oer the hill
    with her babe to her back strapped on.
She has an oul ash plant in her hand
    for to drive her oul donkey along.
Enquiring in every public house on the way
    as along the road she passed,
Is there anyone here to stand me a beer,
    and some where to rest me ass.

There's a old horse fair in County Clare
    in a place they call Spancil Hill.
Where my brother James got a rap of a hames,
    and poor Paddy they tried to kill,
They loaded him up in an oul ass and cart,
    as along the road to go.
Oh good luck to the day that he roved away
    for to join with the tinkers crew.


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Subject: Lyr Add: THIRTY FOOT TRAILER (Ewan MacColl)
From: Tradsinger
Date: 25 Sep 08 - 02:18 PM

Thirty Foot Trailer (Ewan MacColl)

The old ways are changing you cannot deny
The day of the traveller is over
There's nowhere to go and there's nowhere to bide
So farewell to the life of the rover

Chorus:
Goodbye to the tent and the old caravan
To the tinker, the gypsy, the traveling man
And goodbye to the thirty foot trailer

Farewell to the cant and the Romany tongue
Farewell to the Romany talking
The buying and the selling, the old fortune telling
The knock on the door and the hawking

Goodbye to the tent and the old caravan
To the tinker, the gypsy, the traveling man
And goodbye to the thirty foot trailer

Farewell to the besoms of heather and bloom
Farewell to the creels and the basket
The folks of today they would far sooner pay
For a thing that's been made out of plastic

Goodbye to the tent and the old caravan
To the tinker, the gypsy, the traveling man
And goodbye to the thirty foot trailer

The old ways are passing and soon will be gone
For progress is aye a big factor
It's sent to afflict us and when they evict us
They'll tow us away with a tractor

Goodbye to the tent and the old caravan
To the tinker, the gypsy, the traveling man
And goodbye to the thirty foot trailer

Farewell to the pony, the cob and the mare
The reins and the harness are idle
You don't need a strap when you're breaking up scrap
So farewell to the bit and the bridle

Goodbye to the tent and the old caravan
To the tinker, the gypsy, the traveling man
And goodbye to the thirty foot trailer

Farewell to the fields where we've sweated and toiled
At pullin' and crownin' and liftin'
They'll soon have machines and the traveling queens
And their menfolk had better be shiftin'

Goodbye to the tent and the old caravan
To the tinker, the gypsy, the traveling man
And goodbye to the thirty foot trailer

You've got to move fast to keep up with the times
For these days a man cannot dander
There's a bylaw to say you must be on your way
And another to say you can't wander

Goodbye to the tent and the old caravan
To the tinker, the gypsy, the traveling man
And goodbye to the thirty foot trailer


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: ways of the traveller dying out
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 25 Sep 08 - 02:39 PM

Goodbye to the Thirty Foot Trailer Mudcat search results (DT and Forum)

Freeborn Man Mudcat search results (DT and Forum)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: ways of the traveller dying out
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 25 Sep 08 - 05:21 PM

I have heard that 'The Pecker' Dunn didn't write Sullivan's John, but got it from somebody else - would welcome any information on this.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: ways of the traveller dying out
From: tradpiper
Date: 25 Sep 08 - 05:51 PM

Well I heard this too, but pecker said he knew sullivan john, and wrote the song about him. Its a absolutely brilliant song, without a doubt.

Who is this mysterious 'somebody else'?
Normally, if someone claims they wrote a tune, or song they are going to make a fuss about someone else claiming it. Isn't that right?
No, I think it was written by Pecker, until someone   stands up and say 'NO, I Wrote it' this is when, where and why. [ failing that someone who says; xxx wrote it, here's when where and why.]
All this Pecker has done. who else has? And why would a man such as pecker claim something as his own when it wasn't? For what reason?

On the road, as in any area of life there are good and bad. Life is rougher, but the rewards are priceless. A man lives on his wits and is judged by his word.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: ways of the traveller dying out
From: Charley Noble
Date: 25 Sep 08 - 08:35 PM

This thread is surreal!

There are so many levels of reality in it and what is the true reality?

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: ways of the traveller dying out
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 26 Sep 08 - 03:02 AM

"Who is this mysterious 'somebody else'?"
I honestly can't remember, but I got the information from the late Tom Munnelly, who was arguably one of the greatest collectors of traditional song ever and whose knowledge of the subject was second to none.
Tom told me the name of the composer (another Traveller) when we both attended a concert in Limerick at which 'The Pecker' was performing. Unfortunately he isn't around any more to ask, which is why I raised the point.
It is easy enough to get the names wrong nowadays - I wish I had a euro for every time I have heard Jimmy Crowley's 'Pool Song' - which, of course, was written by Con 'Fada Ó Drisceol.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: ways of the traveller dying out
From: tradpiper
Date: 26 Sep 08 - 06:19 AM

That's very interesting Jim. I certainly wouldn't doubt Tom, but as to his source? well without a name and lineage I would be inclined to stick with Pecker. He certainly didn't seem like a man who would claim something as his own when it wasn't.

It is, I agree, very easy to get composers names wrong in trad. Its done all the time. But like I say, If a man wrote a tune/song and then found out another was claiming it as his own, there would be trouble.
That's a very different issue as to an authors name being quoted wrongly through ignorance. These things happen and are generally cleared up pretty quickly IMO.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: ways of the traveller dying out
From: MartinRyan
Date: 28 Sep 08 - 05:47 PM

Made a few enquiries at this weekend's Frank Harte festival regarding the long version of Sullivan's John. It's definitely out there - but nobody has yet pinned down a source. When it turns up, I'll post it in one of the Sullivan's John threads and draw attention to it from here.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: ways of the traveller dying out
From: GUEST,wheresthemamam
Date: 18 Nov 08 - 10:27 AM

I will put your minds at ease Pecker did write this he told me himself.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: ways of the traveller dying out
From: MartinRyan
Date: 18 Nov 08 - 05:39 PM

I've still got to pin down those extra verses....

Regards


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: ways of the traveller dying out
From: Elmore
Date: 05 Jan 13 - 12:13 PM

Anybody know what the phrase "the knock on the door" in the second verse means? I've been revisiting this song recently, and that phrase sounds ominous. Could be harmless though.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: ways of the traveller dying out
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 05 Jan 13 - 12:33 PM

The knock on the door and the hawking.
Hawking means selling door to door.
You have to knock on the door to offer your wares, so quite harmless and not ominous.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: ways of the traveller dying out
From: Elmore
Date: 05 Jan 13 - 05:26 PM

Thanks, Keith, I guess I should've known, since I Knew what hawking means, but the knock on the door reminds me of some sort of dictatorship.


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