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Lyr Add: Gay Green Gown

concertina ceol 25 Mar 04 - 05:29 PM
Sorcha 25 Mar 04 - 07:23 PM
Malcolm Douglas 25 Mar 04 - 07:42 PM
VirginiaTam 07 Jan 09 - 03:26 PM
VirginiaTam 07 Jan 09 - 03:31 PM
Joe Offer 07 Jan 09 - 03:51 PM
VirginiaTam 07 Jan 09 - 03:59 PM
Matthew Edwards 07 Jan 09 - 04:55 PM
Malcolm Douglas 07 Jan 09 - 05:44 PM
Bill D 07 Jan 09 - 05:48 PM
Bill D 07 Jan 09 - 06:09 PM
Matthew Edwards 07 Jan 09 - 07:07 PM
GUEST,julia 07 Jan 09 - 07:12 PM
Joe Offer 07 Jan 09 - 09:18 PM
NigelParry 04 Aug 16 - 11:39 PM
Reinhard 04 Aug 16 - 11:54 PM
Reinhard 04 Aug 16 - 11:59 PM
Steve Gardham 05 Aug 16 - 11:19 AM
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Subject: Lyr Req: Gay Green Gown
From: concertina ceol
Date: 25 Mar 04 - 05:29 PM

Anyone got the lyrics and tune for a song called "Gay green gown". I heard the song on an LP by Graham and Eileen Prat (over 20 years ago now!) but I can't find the tune or lyrics anywhere.

The song is about how a young woman betrays her sweetheart for a gay green gown - it's all a trick dreamt up by a witch of course!

Be really grateful if anyone could help me out.

many thanks


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Gay Green Gown
From: Sorcha
Date: 25 Mar 04 - 07:23 PM

First, tell us any lyrics you have, then put green gown in the white search box at the top. Let us know if any of those threads include it...


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Subject: Lyr/Tune Add: THE GAY GREEN GOWN
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 25 Mar 04 - 07:42 PM

This is one of the surprising songs that appeared in Ruth L Tongue's engaging book The Chime Child (Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1968). Although they were presented as having been collected from various (pseudonymous) singers in Somerset in the early part of the 20th century, all but one have never been found anywhere else, and internal evidence suggests that many of them were written by the same person; quite possibly Miss Tongue herself, though it is impossible to be sure. With the caveat that they may be fakes and not real traditional songs, they are nevertheless interesting and unusual, and well worth attention. I've posted a few here in the past.


THE GAY GREEN GOWN

The Proud Ladye she rode through the wood,
And there in her way the Wicked One stood.
"Now welcome, Proud Ladye, Light down! Light down!
For I must give thee a gay green gown.
'Twill punish thy pride, for no honest Bride
Wears such a gown, wears such a gown - a gay green gown."

The Proud Ladye rode out of the wood,
And her tears fell fast for her maidenhood.
"I will not cause my mother to frown,
I will not sully my Father's Crown-
With my little pen-knife I will take my young life."
And all for a gown, all for a gown - a gay green gown.

The Proud Ladye she laughed in scorn
"No Imp of the Pit by me shall be born!
Now God me forgive that I take my own life,
For maid I am none, and I'll never be wife.
A Leman of Hell, in flames I must dwell
All for a gown, all for a gown - a gay green gown."

The Proud Ladye she stabbed so deep
Her heart's blood trickled down to her knee.
The gown that was green was crimson to see
And red, red, red was her winding sheet.
Now let the bell toll for this Lost Ladye's soul
And all for a gown, all for a gown - a gay green gown.


"Collected", said Miss Tongue, "from Isaiah Sully over a period of sixteen years, from 1904-20."


X:1
T:The Gay Green Gown
B:Ruth L Tongue: The Chime Child, Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1968
S:"Isaiah Sully", West Somerset, 1904-20 (perhaps)
L:1/8
Q:1/4=140
M:3/4
K:C
E2|A4 G2|E4 E2|D3 C D2|E4 E2|A3 A A2|
w:The Proud La-dye she rode through the wood, And there in her
c4 c2|B B3 G2|A4 A2|e3 d c2|A G3 A2|
w:way the Wick-ed One stood. "Now wel-come, Proud La-dye, Light
E4 D2|E4 A2|c4 B2|G2 G2 e2|A4 G2|(EA3)||
w:down! Light down! For I must give thee a gay green gown._
E2|A F3 E2|A4 e2|d4 cB|A4 G2|
w:'Twill pun-ish thy pride, for no hon-est Bride Wears
M:4/4
EE D4 A2|DD E4 c2|(BA3) E4|A6|]
w:such a gown, wears such a gown, a gay_ green gown."


Other songs from the book, and more information on Isaiah Sully and other of Miss Tongue's pseudonymous sources, can be seen at:

On Sedgemoor (The Marsh Fever)
The Green Lady
The Broomsquire's Bird Song
The Worthy Wood Carol
The Three Danish Galleys

The Green Lady is also in the DT, but the notes are a little mangled and the additional information (and corrections) available in the Forum thread have not yet been incorporated.


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Subject: Lyr Add: GAY GREEN GOWN
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 07 Jan 09 - 03:26 PM

GAY GREEN GOWN

(Graham & Eileen Pratt)

The proud lady
Rode into the wood
And there in her way
The wicked one stood
Now welcome proud lady
Lie down, lie down
And I will give you
A gay green gown
T'will punish thy pride
For no honest bride
Wears such a gown
Wears such a gown
A gay green gown

The proud lady
Rode out of the wood
And tears fell fast
For her maidenhood
I will not cause
My mother to frown
I will not sully
My father's crown
With my little pen knife
I'll a take my young life
And all for a gown
All for a gown
A gay green gown

The proud lady
Laughed loudly in scorn
No imp for the pit
By me shall be born
Now god me forgive
That I take my young life
For maid I am none
And I'll never be wife
A leman of hell
In a flames I must dwell
And all for a gown
All for a gown
A gay green gown

The proud lady
She stabbed herself deep
Her hearts blood trickled
All down to her feet
The gown that was green
Was now crimson to see
And red, red, red
Was her winding sheet
Now let the bell toll
For this lost lady's soul
And all for a gown
All for a gown
A gay green gown


Graham & Eileen Pratt Copyright
Clear Air of the Day

VT


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: GAY GREEN GOWN
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 07 Jan 09 - 03:31 PM

Note to above.

I only have a cassette copy of orginal LP so don't know full attribution for above song.

If anyone knows more please supply.

Many thanks

VT


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gay Green Gown
From: Joe Offer
Date: 07 Jan 09 - 03:51 PM

Very interesting song, but I can't find anything more about it. I did a google search for "wears such a gown" "honest bride" - and came up only with this thread. This page (click) on the Bob & Gill Berry recording of the song, says the song came from the singing of Graham and Eileen Pratt, and was collected from Isaiah Sully. I hope somebody will come up with something.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gay Green Gown
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 07 Jan 09 - 03:59 PM

Yeah I just PMd you about troubles I am still having with search function. Sigh.

I searched gay green gown twice on the Old Forum Search and got nada. Then searched again after I posted mine and voila, there is the one posted in March 2004.

I give up.

I would rather just PM my lyrics to a clone, rather than duplicate what has already been done.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gay Green Gown
From: Matthew Edwards
Date: 07 Jan 09 - 04:55 PM

Don't give up!
According to the OED a "green gown" is a good old-fashioned euphemism for 'a throwing young Lasses on the Grass and Kissing them' or as Anthony Munday put it even more clearly in 1602 "At length he was so bold as to giue her a greene gowne when I feare me she lost the flower of her chastity".
There is a lovely song 'The Gown of Green' (Roud 1085) which was sung by Jack Norris of Cuckfield, Sussex and also by the great English gypsy singer Harry Brazil of Gloucestershire.
The song derives from a broadside which was first published as a 'Sequel' to an earlier 'Gown of Green' ballad which referred to events in the American Revolutionary War.
There is an earlier Mudcat thread on The Gown of Green which has some useful information, but nothing about the origins for Graham and Eileen Pratt's song.
Matthew


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gay Green Gown
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 07 Jan 09 - 05:44 PM

No connection to Roud 1085, this is probably a fabrication of Ruth Tongue's making. I posted the whole thing with tune and full source information nearly 5 years ago in response to a request in thread  Lyr Req: Gay Green Gown.

It should be obvious by now that the search engine is malfunctioning at the moment, so now is not the time to be bulk-posting song lyrics. Leave it a few days until things are back to normal; there is no hurry.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gay Green Gown
From: Bill D
Date: 07 Jan 09 - 05:48 PM

Yes...I have the Ruth Tongue book, and that seems to be the only source for the song. I'm surprised anyone has recorded it.

It's kind of a well-done little thing. Too bad it has the taint of fakery about it.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gay Green Gown
From: Bill D
Date: 07 Jan 09 - 06:09 PM

If anyone would like a scan of a part of the book (It has musical score in back) I'd be glad to make one & upload it. (PM me if I miss seeing your request.)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gay Green Gown
From: Matthew Edwards
Date: 07 Jan 09 - 07:07 PM

Thanks for the link, Malcolm. I haven't read The Chime Child, but the song perfectly illustrates just how hard it is to compose a 'folk song'; while the song is quite a powerful piece of poetry which makes very good use of traditional themes, the rhythm and diction and the subject (a rape by the Devil) are all too artificial to be folk material.
All the same I wouldn't regard the song itself as being 'tainted' - it's still an enjoyable(?) song to listen to.
I shouldn't have suggested it is related to 'The Gown of Green' other than as an example of the term 'green gown', but I must confess some admiration for the way the song packs in some traditional images such as a little pen knife, a lost lady, a green gown, a tolling bell and a winding sheet!
Matthew


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gay Green Gown
From: GUEST,julia
Date: 07 Jan 09 - 07:12 PM

I learned this from my friend Kaity Newell who heard it from Graham and Eileen in Nottingham probably 30 years ago.. does that make it a folk song ;-)
It was my daughter's favorite song when she was five...
Julia


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gay Green Gown
From: Joe Offer
Date: 07 Jan 09 - 09:18 PM

Not to worry, Virginia Tam. I combined the two threads, and your lyrics posting was a good contribution of a modern interpretation of the song.
The search engine has been updated recently, so I don't know why it didn't pick the song up. Indexed search engines like that one are faster, but they have lots of flaws. I generally prefer to search by thread title using the Filter on the Forum Menu page, or to search by message title or poster name in the Old Forum Search in the Quicklinks menu on most Mudcat pages.
-Joe-


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gay Green Gown
From: NigelParry
Date: 04 Aug 16 - 11:39 PM

Does anyone know if Ruth L Tongue is still alive, or when she died?

Thanks

Nigel


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gay Green Gown
From: Reinhard
Date: 04 Aug 16 - 11:54 PM

According to chapter 2, "Old Shepherd", in "The Chime Child", Ruth L. Tongue met him as a toddler, and he died about 1903. So she would have been born around 1900. It's unlikely that she's still alive.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gay Green Gown
From: Reinhard
Date: 04 Aug 16 - 11:59 PM

To be more precise, the liner notes of Jackie Oates' album "Lullabies" say Ruth L. Tongue was born in 1898 and died in 1981.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gay Green Gown
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 05 Aug 16 - 11:19 AM

Malcolm stated earlier 'all but one of the songs' are not found elsewhere. Anyone know which is the one? All Tongue-in-cheek stuff!


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