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Folk Against Fascism

TheSnail 12 Jun 09 - 09:49 AM
Folknacious 12 Jun 09 - 09:44 AM
The Borchester Echo 12 Jun 09 - 09:32 AM
TheSnail 12 Jun 09 - 09:25 AM
treewind 12 Jun 09 - 08:59 AM
Andy Jackson 12 Jun 09 - 08:50 AM
Jack Campin 12 Jun 09 - 08:27 AM
Folknacious 12 Jun 09 - 08:14 AM
Ruth Archer 12 Jun 09 - 08:02 AM
GUEST,Tom Bliss 12 Jun 09 - 07:53 AM
treewind 12 Jun 09 - 07:50 AM
Azizi 12 Jun 09 - 07:40 AM
The Sandman 12 Jun 09 - 07:38 AM
The Sandman 12 Jun 09 - 06:42 AM
theleveller 12 Jun 09 - 06:24 AM
SPB-Cooperator 12 Jun 09 - 06:14 AM
Lox 12 Jun 09 - 06:10 AM
Ruth Archer 12 Jun 09 - 06:07 AM
Folknacious 12 Jun 09 - 06:00 AM
Andy Jackson 12 Jun 09 - 05:31 AM
theleveller 12 Jun 09 - 05:26 AM
Andy Jackson 12 Jun 09 - 05:25 AM
IanC 12 Jun 09 - 05:00 AM
Andy Jackson 12 Jun 09 - 04:59 AM
SPB-Cooperator 12 Jun 09 - 04:51 AM
Ruth Archer 12 Jun 09 - 03:20 AM
VirginiaTam 12 Jun 09 - 02:46 AM
Azizi 12 Jun 09 - 01:51 AM
Azizi 12 Jun 09 - 01:13 AM
Azizi 12 Jun 09 - 01:05 AM
Dorothy Parshall 11 Jun 09 - 11:54 PM
jeddy 11 Jun 09 - 10:22 PM
Ian Fyvie 11 Jun 09 - 10:12 PM
TheSnail 11 Jun 09 - 08:42 PM
Andy Jackson 11 Jun 09 - 07:35 PM
Dave the Gnome 11 Jun 09 - 06:51 PM
Dave the Gnome 11 Jun 09 - 06:40 PM
Andy Jackson 11 Jun 09 - 06:35 PM
The Sandman 11 Jun 09 - 06:26 PM
Dorothy Parshall 11 Jun 09 - 06:10 PM
Folknacious 11 Jun 09 - 04:45 PM
Rifleman (inactive) 11 Jun 09 - 04:29 PM
theleveller 11 Jun 09 - 04:10 PM
Anne Lister 11 Jun 09 - 03:59 PM
Crow Sister (off with the fairies) 11 Jun 09 - 12:37 PM
Rifleman (inactive) 11 Jun 09 - 12:32 PM
theleveller 11 Jun 09 - 12:16 PM
GUEST,Neil D 11 Jun 09 - 11:56 AM
Andy Jackson 11 Jun 09 - 11:46 AM
Rifleman (inactive) 11 Jun 09 - 11:12 AM
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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: TheSnail
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 09:49 AM

Correction -

Would you have told the residents* and members of the B&B Club (later known as the Singers Club) that their policy of only singing songs from your own culture "sound(ed) like the BNP manifesto."?

* Who included Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Folknacious
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 09:44 AM

Getting it quite so spectacularly wrong takes some doing.

Yes, I'm not sure how you manage it

One of the purposes of this exercise is to prevent British folk music becoming tainted by the BNP. You seem to be saying that the battle is already lost; that the BNP already have possesion.

Not at all. How on earth you and old Lietnenant Birdsnest manage to completely misinterpret plain English is beyond me. Which bit of "If a club says it specialises in folk and traditional music, but really means British or English folk and traditional music, and by that really means the music of white British or English people who have been resident in the UK for (let's say) more than 100 years, then explaining that in terms which don't run close to the BNP manifesto will be difficult" are you having such trouble with?

The BNP don't have posession and I hope they never will: they might do if careless explanations of motivation (and heads in sand) play into their hands.

The other people who worry me are the little Englander folkies who look at the BNPs sweetened camouflage words and go "oh, they might just have a point." The only point the BNP have is on the end of their bayonets.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 09:32 AM

Oh no, not again.

Policy @ Ballads & Blues as determined by the membership.

Not Ewan MacColl (who had a wide repertoire from all over.
And not the Singers' but the Ballads & Blues.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: TheSnail
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 09:25 AM

Folknacious

No, of course we don't. But we have to be very careful how we explain why. If a club says it specialises in folk and traditional music, but really means British or English folk and traditional music, and by that really means the music of white British or English people who have been resident in the UK for (let's say) more than 100 years, then explaining that in terms which don't run close to the BNP manifesto will be difficult. Possible, maybe (just maybe) justifiable, but difficult.

Getting it quite so spectacularly wrong takes some doing.

One of the purposes of this exercise is to prevent British folk music becoming tainted by the BNP. You seem to be saying that the battle is already lost; that the BNP already have possesion. The only way we can prevent this scum taking it over is making it truly our own WITHOUT having to justify ourselves.

Would you have told Ewan MacColl that the policy at the Singers Club of only singing songs from your own culture "sound(ed) like the BNP manifesto."?


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: treewind
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 08:59 AM

I've now tried signing the "not in my name" thing and I got an error message too (a different one from Tom). I'll keep trying...

Anahata


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Andy Jackson
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 08:50 AM

Azizi:
Sorry, I can do confused...But my sentiments were correct


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Jack Campin
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 08:27 AM

That said, I believe that the current description (as I read about it on Mudcat-of Anglo British folk music (to use the "Anglo" meaning "White"terminology that is known in the United States)

Please DON'T. Many Scots, Welsh and Irish will find that INCREDIBLY offensive. We AREN'T English, not even if you use a Latinate word for "English" to say so. "Traditional music of the British Isles" will do.


lends itself to expropriation by the BNP because it has so few non-White practitioners and followers/fans and because it appears to consider itself the only "traditional music" in Britain.

The Scottish experience suggests differently. Pretty near any political demonstration by forces on the left will have a Highland piper (or band thereof) near the front.   There might well also be a samba school, but the expectation is that at least a large fraction of people involved in Scottish traditional music can be expected to turn up at any event opposing the sort of thing the BNP stands for. (The only kind of music in Scotland specifically associated with the far right is fife-and-drum band music, as used by the Orange Order).

There are a few non-white performers of Scottish music - mainly on the bagpipes (and that's been routine for decades), but one of the best-known Scottish traditional pub singers in Edinburgh is of Chinese extraction.

Getting morris sides at the front of English anti-fascist demos, and covered by the media when doing it, would help.


In addition, the acceptance of songs with the "N" word, if that does occur as I read on Mudcat,

Fairly unusual - I don't think I've ever heard that in a British folk performance, even one of the most antiquarian variety - but remember that the word itself doesn't carry quite the same nightmare emotional freight that it does in the US.

At any rate there is absolutely NO chance that you would hear the word used in a British folk performance in a context where it would lend support to fascists.


and the custom of blackening up don't help answer any charge that might come (and I do believe will come) from people who are/will be far less friendly to your (our) cause than me.

Blackening up really is an irrelevance. It doesn't historically have anything to do with African people or images of them, and it isn't generally perceived to be related to racial issues, even by racists. Blacked-up dance teams look more like mineworkers coming off shift than anything else. It's crazy to try and pick a fight with people who perform in that tradition - more likely to lose allies for the anti-fascist movement and create new friends for the BNP.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Folknacious
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 08:14 AM

FOLKNACIOUS,why should folk club organisers change their booking policies?why should the EFDSS change its policy. if you want a multinational/ international folksong/ music club,start one.

Did I suggest they should? As is often the case, you read selectively, buzzed by your own bonnet bees. All I was saying is that people who want to specialise just need to present their case in a way that doesn't accidentally sound like the BNP manifesto. The EFDSS have managed that. Not too hard, unless you are chasing bees.

Luckily I don't need to start my own. There's a very good one that I already attend which programmes all sorts of traditional music found in the UK, mostly from the white majority, occasional from a minority, which seems appropriately balanced, fun, successful, and not do-gooder tokenist at all


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 08:02 AM

I don't think it is appropriate to define Anglo by its American meaning when it's being used in England, Azizi. From Wiki:

"The term Anglo is used as a prefix to indicate a relation to the Angles, England or the English people, as in the terms Anglo-Saxon, Anglo-American, Anglo-Celtic, Anglo-African and Anglo-Indian. It is often used alone, somewhat loosely, to refer to the English people in The Americas, Australia and Southern Africa. It is also used, both in English-speaking and non-English-speaking countries, to refer to Anglophone people of other European origins.

Anglo is a Late Latin prefix used to denote English- in conjunction with another toponym or demonym. The word is derived from Anglia, the Latin name for England, and still the modern name of its eastern region. Anglia and England both mean Land of the Angles, a Germanic people originating in the north German peninsula of Angeln."

English folk music is largely comprised of the indigenous folk music of England. It is not considered by anyone I know as the only traditional music in England - from ska to bhangra, it's all here, and long may it prosper.

There is nothing wrong, as Dick Miles has insightfully pointed out, with having a society or group dedicated to a particular genre of music or dance. As long as that society is welcoming and open to people of all backgrounds, and they too, as Britons (whether naturalised or born here) are allowed to feel equal ownership over that heritage, I don't really see the problem. I also think it's important to look for natural points of convergence. I'm hoping to have a project at Sidmouth next year which will look at Caribbean and English mumming traditions. It involves bringing a group of Dominican and Kittitian mummers to Sidmouth. It also involves work in local schools looking at both traditions. For me, these are natural and organic ways of examining diversity: find the points of commonality and use them as an entry point into each other's cultures.

That doesn't mean I think every folk club or singaround should contain African Caribbean songs - in fact, when at my local singaround a bunch of white, middle class people start singing Let My People Go or Bob Marley's Redemption Song, I cringe. I'd rather clubs and folk events were simply open and welcoming to anyone from other cultures who wishes to explore them.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: GUEST,Tom Bliss
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 07:53 AM

I tried to upload a photo and it went 404 - but if it does that just quit and log in again.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: treewind
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 07:50 AM

Never mind the political bickering, here's something else we can all do:
(I don't think anybody's mentioned this yet)

There's a petition which says NOT IN MY NAME. The petition will
be handed into the European Parliament on the day that BNP leader Nick
Griffin takes his seat.

http://action.hopenothate.org.uk/notinmyname

Get your digital cameras clicking!
(you are asked to send in a photo of yourself holding up a card saying "not in my name")
63478 signatures already. That seems pretty amazing to me: it must have been running for a while)

Anahata


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Azizi
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 07:40 AM

Here are some random comments:

Miskin Man, I recall reading on this thread or on another current thread something about the oppression of musicians and other creative composers/performers in Pakistan. That being the case, I can understand how you substituted the nation name "Pakistan" for the nation name "Nigeria". Bottom line-I have no problem with that.

**
I feel that too much energy on this thread is being spent on people feeling a need to declare that they aren't racist. I don't like the way this looks and feels. In the past, I've received private messages from some folks saying that they try to be extra careful what they say around me because they are concerned that I would call them a racist or-if I don't out and out call them a racist-I and other people might consider them racist.

This troubles me because 1. I rarely have indicated that something someone wrote is racist (note I'm talking about a person's actions and not the person himself or herself) and 2. I want to be seen as "just one of the group" and feel that I shouldn't be thought otherwise just because of my race and just because I sometimes feel the need to raise issues of prejudice/racism and/or respond to issues that others here have raised about race/prejudice. In other words, I don't go around Mudcat or my offline life accusing Mudcatters and guests at being racism.

That said, I believe that the current description (as I read about it on Mudcat-of Anglo British folk music (to use the "Anglo" meaning "White"terminology that is known in the United States)lends itself to expropriation by the BNP because it has so few non-White practitioners and followers/fans and because it appears to consider itself the only "traditional music" in Britain. In addition, the acceptance of songs with the "N" word, if that does occur as I read on Mudcat, and the custom of blackening up don't help answer any charge that might come (and I do believe will come) from people who are/will be far less friendly to your (our) cause than me.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: The Sandman
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 07:38 AM

Folknacious
:here are the aims of the EFDSS
MISSION STATEMENT:

The English Folk Dance and Song Society will develop its resources, namely the Vaughan Williams Memorial Library, Cecil Sharp House, its professional staff and its members, to:

• maintain itself as a centre of excellence for the study, practice and dissemination of traditional English folk song, dance and music;
• provide national and local outreach services that enable and increase access;
• celebrate diversity and promote equality.
I do not think this is racist.
FOLKNACIOUS,why should folk club organisers change their booking policies?why should the EFDSS change its policy.
if you want a multinational/ international folksong/ music club,start one.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: The Sandman
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 06:42 AM

Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Folknacious - PM
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 06:00 AM

We don't all have to do it all.

No, of course we don't. But we have to be very careful how we explain why. If a club says it specialises in folk and traditional music, but really means British or English folk and traditional music, and by that really means the music of white British or English people who have been resident in the UK for (let's say) more than 100 years, then explaining that in terms which don't run close to the BNP manifesto will be difficult. Possible, maybe (just maybe) justifiable, but difficult. On the other hand, occasionally including traditional musicians from your local Somali, Polish or Bangladeshi community in a small way might easily be seen as tokenism if your heart's not in it. Always having positive reasons to explain whatever you do is a good start, and supporting FAF would be another, to make everything very clear.
so does that make the Northumbrian Pipers society racist,because it promotes ,a SPECIFIC MUSIC,[IMO]no,it only becomes racist when it excludes other nationalities from playing that music.
Neither is Comhaltas racist,because it promotes Irish music.
it is justifiable,just as Strathspey and Reel societies are justifiable,they are justifiable because they gives people pleasure,and providing these societies are open to all nationalities they are not racist.
would you expect the Sheffield, Yorkshire carol singers,to start singing   French carols? to combat the BNP,that is ridiculous.
one of the hallmarks of Fascism,is telling others what they should do
if you want a multi cultural folk music club start one,you are free to do so.
it will only be when the BNP takes power that you will not be free to do so.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: theleveller
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 06:24 AM

As a resident of the area that voted in the first fascist MEP (through intention or apathy), I feel the need to try to alert my fellow East Ridingers to the dangerous path that has been embarked on – especially as Hull was the birthplace of William Wilberforce, the man whose vision and efforts helped to end the slave trade in Britain. So I've written what I hope will be a rallying call to those who oppose these evil people. I intend to sing it at every opportunity.

The Legacy

In Hull, William Wilberforce first struck the spark
That kindled a beacon which lit up the dark
And as the flames soared it was clear to see:
The message that men must be equal and free.

Chorus:
So keep it alive, now, keep it alive,
William's legacy has to survive.
Freedom's hard-won so don't let it die
Use your voices and votes to stamp out the lies.

Today there are those who would put out Will's flame
And put our traditions and values to shame.
If you're black or you're brown, or a leftie, or gay,
Get out of our country, you're not welcome, they say.

Chorus

Now they don't have shaved heads, they wear collars and ties
But the cold light of hatred still shines in their eyes
And instead of the boot they use soft words and smile
But the message they peddle is equally vile.

Chorus

They may now think their views have legitimacy
And the Queen may invite them to join her for tea
But let's stand together and blow on Will's flame
And shout to these bastards: "Not in my name!"

Chorus

So good people of Hull and the East Riding towns
Don't let these bigots and fascists gain ground.
We've opened the door to their doctrine of hate
Now let's slam it again before it's too late.

Chorus

(Tune to follow).


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: SPB-Cooperator
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 06:14 AM

Folk music has been here longer than the BNP manifesto.
Worker co-ops have been around longer than the BNP manifesto.

We should not be apologising for the what we hold dear because the BNP are trying to hijack it. People own folk music, not the facist/Nazi movement. Suggestion to organisers: put Folk against Facism posters up at their venues, and refer to FaF in your adverts.

Br proud of how our traditionas are contributing and enriching a worldwide, diverse culture, of which we are a sma;ll part.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Lox
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 06:10 AM

"This action in Pakistan is exactly what we are guarding against."



... erm ... you mean Nigeria ...




... hey ... if I hadn't someone else would have ... :-)


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 06:07 AM

"although at the moment a bit vague"

We are raising awareness amongst the wider public of the attempt by the BNP to appropriate traditional music and culture as part of its racist definition of nationalism, and to claim that culture as theirs. We are attempting to block that appropriation. We are exposing the BNP as a party which has not changed, no matter how much they try and spin their PR, but which is still full of nazis and fascists. This is a specific agenda and a specific response to a specific set of circumstances - namely, the election of the BNP in Yorkshire, their selling of folk music on their website despite the wishes of the artists involved, and their campaign guides which advise activists to infiltrate folk culture. At the moment, that is what this is about. If it develops over time to embrace wider issues and themes that's fine, but in the meantime, I feel that there are a lot of existing groups who already cover these things and, while we may share solidarity with them, they are doing what they do very well and anyone is very welcom to join them.

The campaign through which we will do this is still in development (which is forgiveable, I think, given that the whole thing is still only 4 days old). But it will cetainly include events, concerts, and distribution of awareness-raising materials such as badges, stickers and t-shirts, plus leaflets which explain the reasons behind the campaign.

I hope that's clear. I think it's all there on the facebook page, really.



By the way, to everyone who's told me about the identity theft - ta. Yes, they've done a "Hoff Bridge" on me, too. It's been reported to Facebook. Sad, really, but at least it exposes the BNP and their grubby little tactics to anyone who thinks they've "changed".


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Folknacious
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 06:00 AM

We don't all have to do it all.

No, of course we don't. But we have to be very careful how we explain why. If a club says it specialises in folk and traditional music, but really means British or English folk and traditional music, and by that really means the music of white British or English people who have been resident in the UK for (let's say) more than 100 years, then explaining that in terms which don't run close to the BNP manifesto will be difficult. Possible, maybe (just maybe) justifiable, but difficult. On the other hand, occasionally including traditional musicians from your local Somali, Polish or Bangladeshi community in a small way might easily be seen as tokenism if your heart's not in it. Always having positive reasons to explain whatever you do is a good start, and supporting FAF would be another, to make everything very clear.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Andy Jackson
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 05:31 AM

Third try.

All together now !!


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: theleveller
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 05:26 AM

"At the same time our traditions should sit comfortably alongside other traditions such as Diwali and Eid and Carnival "

This diversity is actively promoted in schools. My daughter goes to a CofE Primary school (it's the only primary school in the area)and alongside our traditional festivals, they learn all about those of other cultures.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Andy Jackson
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 05:25 AM

I expect many will have seen this already, bu links are cheap enough!!
It says everything really.

FAF Andy


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: IanC
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 05:00 AM

I think they said Patel is AMONG the most common surnames. There are 729862 Smiths at the last count. Patel comes 45th with 119855.

:-)


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Andy Jackson
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 04:59 AM

Ruth: I agree of course we must stick to our important,although at the moment a bit vague brief.
BUT, Azizi has a very valid reason to broaden the information gathering. This action in Pakistan is exactly what we are guarding against. Whilst we should not as a body actively engage ourselves in their problems it serves as a warning to us.
As an individual I shall be keeping an eye on the Pkistan problem and doing whatever small thing I can, but as an individual at the moment.
Thanks Azizi for your input, it has opened my eyes several times.

FAF Andy


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: SPB-Cooperator
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 04:51 AM

Pne of the things folk against facism is about is ownership of folk and ensuring that it does not ecome a right wing propagandist tool.

Yes, we should be proud of our tradtions and open let all people irrespective of nationality and ethnicity share in the pleasure the provide.

At the same time our traditions should sit comfortably alongside other traditions such as Diwali and Eid and Carnival (even if we get the date wrong in Notting Hill). I was invited to attend a party to celebrate Eid once and fekt honoured to receive the invitation.

Lets promote lots of folk events, roots events, other cultural events to celebrate how it is the richness of diverse cultures makes Britain great, and welcome all people to enjoy and participate.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 03:20 AM

"Isn't that what movements such as Folk Against Fascism is all about? Or is the concern about creativity being potentially stifled and actually stifled only there when it comes to White people??"

Standing in solidarity with other groups is very important, Azizi. But as I've explained previously, Folk Against Fascism has a very specific brief, and if we're not careful, the group could become diverted from that brief by trying to address too many issues on too large a scale.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 02:46 AM

A slight aside.

Heard on Beeb R4 this morning. The most common surname in Great Britain is 1/4 of a million strong and it is the name Patel.

I think this perfect.

I have invited Britain born Asian friend/former colleague to attend folk club with me, but folk music is not her cup of tea. Invited Turkish friend but she is young and prefers to spend her evenings playing snooker or riding about on motor bike with her partner.

In fact I have invited all close colleagues and friends and only one has attended once. The general attitude is not interested. So we need to address the young.

Having said that I wonder how we can first meet and then invite BME groups to engage in folk music and dance of Great Britain? I think one way would be through school fetes. If local Morris teams, ceileidgh clubs and folk musicians and singers would just approach the parent associations, get and invite, attend, do demos and provide recruitment literature and really welcome all.... oh dear....

Sigh.. I am dreaming again.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Azizi
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 01:51 AM

I meant to post a hyperlink to that Mudcat thread that Guest Felipa started to alert us to the oppression of creativity that is occurring in one province of Nigeria. Here's that link:

thread.cfm?threadid=121513&messages=7 "11 Hausa songs banned in Kano, Nigeria"

**

At this time, the only other posting besides Felipa's and mine is a comment that "jokes" about Nigerian scam. I sincerely hope that other 'Catters and Mudcat guests will visit that thread and demonstrate your support for the songwriters, musicians, authors, film makers, actors, and other creative people who are being oppressed in that particular part of Nigeria.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Azizi
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 01:13 AM

Correction to my first sentence of that repost:

"If you do not care for the loss of freedom that other creative people are experiencing, you should at least realize that you are laughing and sneering at information such at this at your own peril."

**

Here is an additional excerpt from that article about censorship in the Islamic province of in the northern part of Nigeria, West Africa:


"The censors board in Nigeria's northern Kano State was instituted in 2001 after the controversial implementation of Islamic shari'a law in Kano State. Film-making was at first banned outright, but the filmmakers' association of Northern Nigeria (MOPPAN) suggested a "review" board as a compromise measure, which allowed the industry to continue, though with certain restrictions on language, dress and "close dancing between men and women." (Five of the ten laws were specifically related to women's clothing or interaction with men.)...

he imprisonment clause has been put into effect several times. Besides Adam Zango, who was imprisoned in September 2007, pioneering Hausa director and former Kano State gubernatorial candidate Hamisu Lamido Iyan Tama was jailed after copies of his film Tsintsiya were impounded from a video shop in Kano in May 2008. He was accused of not registering his company Iyan Tama Multimedia with the censorship board.

(A court case reveals that the company had, in fact, registered and paid the required fees.) Ironically, the director was arrested the day of his return from the Zuma Film Festival in Abuja where Tsintsiya had won an award for Best Film on Social Issue. "

-snip-

Click http://ipsnews.net/africa/nota.asp?idnews=43857
to read more about what is now happening in Northern Nigeria and what could happen to creative people in my nation and your own nation if people aren't vigilant and pro-active.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Azizi
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 01:05 AM

I am reposting this comment from a current thread here because I believe it is pertinent this discussion:

Subject: RE: 11 Hausa songs banned in Kano, Nigeria
From: Azizi - PM
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 01:01 AM

If you do not care for the loss of freedom that other creative people are experiences, you should at least realize that you are laughing and sneering at information such at this at your on peril. What is occurring in this Islamic province of the multi-religious nation of Nigeria, is a sign of what could occur in other nations if people are not pro-active and vigilant. For instance, were a fascist government headed by the BNP ever to achieve real power in Britain or other parts of the United Kingdom, they would target song composers, musicians, film makers, vocalists, actors and other creative people just as is now occurring in that one particular area of Nigeria.

This excerpt of that 2008 "Nigerian Writers, Film-makers Defy Censors"
article that Guest Felipa alerted us to should serve as a warning of things to come:

"Kano State government officials have burned books they say promote immorality...

The imprisonment clause has been put into effect several times. Besides Adam Zango, who was imprisoned in September 2007, pioneering Hausa director and former Kano State gubernatorial candidate Hamisu Lamido Iyan Tama was jailed after copies of his film Tsintsiya were impounded from a video shop in Kano in May 2008. He was accused of not registering his company Iyan Tama Multimedia with the censorship board.

(A court case reveals that the company had, in fact, registered and paid the required fees.) Ironically, the director was arrested the day of his return from the Zuma Film Festival in Abuja where Tsintsiya had won an award for Best Film on Social Issue.

The new censorship regime has had the effect of suppressing Hausa filmmaking in Kano, Northern Nigeria's largest city. The exact size of the industry is hard to determine, but a 2002 study by the national censors board counted 133 Hausa films produced between January and August of that year, making the Hausa film industry second in size only to Yoruba.

Although filmmakers are still doing post-production in Kano, locations have been moved to neighboring states, the majority now being shot in neighbouring Kaduna State. Filmmakers bypass the Kano State Censors Board by marking "Not for sale in Kano" on their films and selling them in other states.

Following the exodus of the Hausa film-making scene from Kano State, Malam Rabo, the director general of the censors board, turned his attention to the writers in the state...

The suppression of creativity in Nigeria is hardly a new phenomenon. Writers have been imprisoned and even executed like novelist and activist Ken Saro-Wiwa. However, the popular imagination combined with the subversive possibilities of such new technologies point to the impossibility of the task undertaken by the Censorship Board.

Filmmakers travel out of state to film and bring the digital tapes back in to edit, taking them back out of state to market. Writers, kept from publishing articles in local newspapers, repeat sentiments on blogs and pass digital photos of correspondence with the censors via email listserves.

Bus drivers plaster the windows of their ramshackle vehicles with stickers of "porn-star" Hiyana. Young people cite watching movies as inspiration for using their phones to record conversations with corrupt lecturers and authority figures who they then expose as hypocrites.

In the Clarendon lectures given at Oxford University in 1996, formerly imprisoned Kenyan novelist Ngugi wa Thiong'o theorised that whereas the state seeks to silence alternate stories, "art tries to restore voices to the land. It tries to give voice back to the silenced". In Northern Nigeria , despite state-sponsored bans, book burnings, and imprisonments, it is becoming difficult to silence those voices in the first place."

http://ipsnews.net/africa/nota.asp?idnews=43857


-snip-

We Mudcatters should be standing in solidarity with the creative people in that Northern province of Nigeria instead of making stupid jokes about them. Isn't that what movements such as Folk Against Fascism is all about? Or is the concern about creativity being potentially stifled and actually stifled only there when it comes to White people?


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 11:54 PM

DeG: "Pop music has lots of examples of being influenced by music from, for instance, the Beatles' Maharisi Yogi days to Sting's Arabian themed Desert Rain. There must be plenty of folk musicians out there doing the same."

OF course. And has been for centuries. The flamenco evolved from the whirling dervish. I see the steps of all contemporary dances in ancient folk dances. Musicians are certainly affected by the music around them. Just a different sort of evolution. To be aware is to begin to understand our connectedness. We do not need to lose by it. We gain with awareness and still can maintain the integrity of the traditional - all the better by our awareness. Look at very old trad music and see if there is not an influence from the Crusades in there at times???

The fascists cannot take anything from us unless we allow it, give up our power, fail in our vigilance.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: jeddy
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 10:22 PM

IAN, you are quite right when you say there is a gap in the market, so to speak, that is just what they want the brits to think . that the BNP are for the ordiary people, if i didn't know them better i might have been persuaded, i know the truth about them and MOST of their policies still SOUND good, it is no wonder then that the less inclined are completely taken in.

as for what folk clubs should do about this.....abSOLUTELY NOTHING.. keep doing what you are doing, you know what your' punters like and when they want something abit different,becuase they tell you and discuss it.
we should not let the threat of the BNP change how and why we do the things we love.

take care all

i can't wait to get my FaF t shirt and wear it with pride x x


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Ian Fyvie
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 10:12 PM

"I do believe that is why they got in, thankfully not because people believe in their aims." (Miskin Man)

On BBC TV tonight I think it was Dianne Abbot MP who said the BNP got in through large numbers of working class voters being disillusioned with New Labour (where the New Labour's former middle class voters have gone to the Greens).

As Miskin Man mentions, it's not generally that these working class voters are racist. Quite apart from the "two fingers to the three main parties" factor, it is that New Labour has left a vacuum in areas of huge working class concerns such as privatisation, feeding the Bankers instead of saving manufacturing jobs - things that Old (Peoples') Labour would have (one would hope) adressed.

Where the Red and Green Left hasn't beeen active, thousands are only hearing one party saying what they want to hear on those traditional Labour issues.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: TheSnail
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 08:42 PM

Thanks to Anne Lister and Captain Birdseye. Spot on. Saved me a lot of typing.

There are a wide variety of folk clubs and folk dance organisations. We don't all have to do it all.

Bryan Creer


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Andy Jackson
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 07:35 PM

I for one don't intend to be swayed by the BNP to change my preference for Britsh music. Luckily I think we have already established that that does not make me a racist.

FAF Andy


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 06:51 PM

I cross posted with Dick -

some folk clubs promote English traditional music

Yes, we do indeed. But maybe we should be widening the definition of traditional English music? England has been multi-national for hundreds of years and the traditions that immigrants brought with them are now as much a part of traditional English life as Morris dance! Like I said earlier, Chicken Tikka Masalla and Balti are now part of traditional English food. Surely we can do the same with music.

Pop music has lots of examples of being influenced by music from, for instance, the Beatles' Maharisi Yogi days to Sting's Arabian themed Desert Rain. There must be plenty of folk musicians out there doing the same.

DeG


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 06:40 PM

I am slow on the uptake about political issues at times as can be demonstrated in various threads on the 'cat but I do eventualy cotton on:-)

The more I think about this issue the more important I realise it is. If we let the BNP have their way we will loose a lot of what we take for granted. Imagine for one minute that we allow them to use Folk music and ritual dance in the way they want we will get the situation that the Folk club and Morris team will move from the slightly comedic butt of media jokes to an art form associated with this hateful organisation. Anyone involved will become tarred with the same brush and I, for one, will not sit back and let that happen.

I urge anyone and everyone involved in traditional English music and dance to ensure that we fight the incidious invasion of our culture. If that means actively going onto the streets and making sure that everyone, from all cultures represented in the UK, are not only welcome in but can make a real difference to our traditions then that is what we should be doing.

I'm on a mission...

DeG


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Andy Jackson
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 06:35 PM

A guy on Question time (BBC1 UK) just now admitted to voting BNP. When questioned why he replied from a written list with all the usual BNP lines. When pushed he had to admit it was to "put two fingers up to the three main parties".

I do believe that is why they got in, thankfully not because people believe in their aims. This is not a call to apathy but rather the reverse, we should be engaging the BNP voters in proper dialogue and expose the truth of the BNP.

FAF Andy


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: The Sandman
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 06:26 PM

a very good post from Ann Lister.
it is important that we do not allow english folk music to be hijacked by the BNP.
In my opinion the answer is for folk club organisers to carry on with exactly the booking policies,that they feel is right for their club.
some folk clubs promote English traditional music,some folkclubs promote contemporary songwriters ,some clubs promote both,some clubs promote blues.,long may that continue.
English,Scottish , Welsh, Irish folk music needs to be promoted.,as does other national folk music.
if a promoter wishes to run a club that is exclusively folk or roots music from another country,that is good.
or if he /she wishes to start integrating folk music from other areas in to the musical programme,that is his/her choice.,the organiser is taking a gamble,and might be well advised to introduce,these changes gradually,or to seek the opinions of club regulars first,alternatively there might be a lot of new faces,who wish to hear a more international flavour of music.
If he/ she does not want to do this it does not make the organiser a racist.,any more than would be the case,if it was an Indian person running an exclusively Indian folk music club in England ,India or anywhere else.
But The reason for running a Folk/Roots club,should be,because the organiser enjoys the music and wishes to promote it.
imo ,it seems incorrect for organisers to suddenly change their booking policies because of a fear that English folk music is being hijacked by the BNP,or because they think it might be a useful way of countering the BNP.
the best way[imo] to counter the BNP is to defeat their arguments intellectually ,MBS GEORGE has not yet replied to the many posts,which might suggest that she knows that her points of view would be made to look exactly what they are,intellectually bankrupt.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 06:10 PM

Folk = Volk = people = ALL people regardless of whether we are "folk musicians" or what evers. "Folk" does not either denote nor connote someone wrapped up in the "folk scene." The music of the folk (people) of any part of the world has always included protest music, music telling about life as it is/was. Was that not the original purpose? Wandering minstrels carrying the news from hamlet to hamlet? And now - the internet carries the message around the world in seconds!!

I see the Brits, or is it just the English, sticking closely to only music/dance that is "traditional". I see the US and Canadian folk sorts, festivals, what have you, sticking to "trad" music and contemporary "folk" and if any dancing at all - square, contra, or Morris.

Would it be too broadening for the dance of the folk of other lands to be included? I love our folk music and musicians, prefer the more contemporary to the hard-core trad. But I live to dance and my preferred dance is the dances of the people - international folk dance - Greek, Serbian, etc. I feel in touch with those who have danced these for hundreds of years, with their music and their spirit.

Perhaps broadening our own horizons would help us, and others, to broaden theirs? Lest our world be defined by the perimeter of our halo? (No offense meant to anyone.)

In any case, it is good to see folks standing up to be counted. Let us not sit down until we have rocked the boat.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Folknacious
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 04:45 PM

Anne:

ENGLAND, HALF-ENGLISH

Words & Music : Billy Bragg

My mother was half-English
And I'm half-English too
I'm a great big bundle of culture
Tied up in the red, white and blue
I'm a fine example of your Essex Man
And I'm well familiar with the Hindustan
'Cos my neighbours are half-English
And I'm half-English too

My breakfast was half-English
And so am I you know
I had a plate of Marmite soldiers
Washed down with a cappuccino
And I have a veggie curry about once a week
The next day I fry it up as 'Bubble 'N' Squeak'
'Cos my appetite's half-English
And I'm half-English too

Dance with me
To this very English melody
From Morris dancing to Morrissey
All that stuff came from across the sea

Britannia, she's half-English
She speaks Latin at home
St. George was born in the Lebanon
How he got here I don't know
And those three lions on your shirt
They never sprang from England's dirt
Them lion's are half-English
And I'm half-English too

Le-li Umma le-li-ya
le-li Umma le-li-ya
Le-li Umma le-li-ya
bledi g'desh akh! le-li-ya

Oh my country
Oh my country
Oh my country
What a beautiful country you are


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Rifleman (inactive)
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 04:29 PM

"Rifleman, is there anything in particular, which makes you feel that you wish to stand back?"

"Some people are more a pain in the arse than sitting on the fence is."
I'm niot actually sitting on the fence, but I do believe I'll do things my way in my time.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: theleveller
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 04:10 PM

"Some people are more a pain in the arse than sitting on the fence is."

Well, that's something we agree on.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Anne Lister
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 03:59 PM

Catching up, belatedly as ever ...I don't see any kind of "either/or" about people and their preferences for music from different cultures and their own. However, as this thread is concerned with the attack on "British" folk music (perhaps this should be "English") via the attentions of the BNP, and as English folk music and dance have been under various forms of attack by the media over more years than I want to think about (mostly humour, mostly harmless, admittedly, but not helpful), and as it is often more difficult to attract grant funding for projects to do with English folk culture than for music and dance from other cultural backgrounds ... in short, as in this context English folk music is very much the minority interest and one of the few places it happens is in folk clubs my point was that I don't want accusations of nationalism, fascism, jingoism and racism to attach to folk clubs that don't book other varieties of world music as a result of their booking policy.

The cultural diversity question, applied to modern Britain, is indeed complex and full of contradictory potholes, to mix my metaphors and images. All I'm saying is that everyone is entitled to be proud of their own heritage, and that includes English folk enthusiasts and performers. No "either/or" involved. And when it comes to the old chestnut about how we're all essentially mixed ethnicities anyway over here - actually, not necessarily. In my family history the biggest mix was between Yorkshire and Oxfordshire, with a sprinkling of Devon, back at least as far as 1700. And most of them, I'm very proud to say, agricultural labourers or aspiring white collar workers rather than titled aristocrats.

And none of this makes me a white supremacist, a racist or a follower of the BNP. I don't think I'm better than anyone else, but I do insist that my cultural heritage is equal to anyone else's. I am rather tired of feeling apologetic about being English - and unable to make a statement about this without appearing to be a moronic nationalist.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Crow Sister (off with the fairies)
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 12:37 PM

Rifleman, is there anything in particular, which makes you feel that you wish to stand back? I think like me, TheLeveller simply found your statement confusing. I didn't understand whatever point it was that you were making, or what exactly you'd been thinking about.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Rifleman (inactive)
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 12:32 PM

"Wait before you do what? Support it? Oppose it? Sitting on the fence can be a pain in the arse"

that's the wonderful thing about democracy, you do what you want

Some people are more a pain in the arse than sitting on the fence is.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: theleveller
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 12:16 PM

"I'll wait and see how far some people are willing to go with this issue. "

Wait before you do what? Support it? Oppose it? Sitting on the fence can be a pain in the arse :)


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: GUEST,Neil D
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 11:56 AM

Speaking of crossing the line into violence, a long-time racist anti-semite attacked the National Holocaust Museum in Washington D.C. yesterday killing a security guard before being shot himself. Security guards at that museum are trained to be always on high alert because it is one of the most threatened institutions in America, a sad fact indeed. Otherwise he would have killed many more innocents. The MSNBC story reports that this man was a frequent attendee of American Friends of the British National Party rallies.


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Andy Jackson
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 11:46 AM

I have always considered myself "non political" I don't "do" politics, but by God I care about my fellow man. The whole idea of the BNP appalls me and in fact scares me. I particularly dislike the idea of appropriating the music I love and have worked hard for all my adult life. This is why I joined FAF, triggered by the wayward thinking of a previous friend.
I hope we get a coherent mission statement organised for the website. Fo my pen'orth it's deeper than Racism and probably deeper than the BNP although they must be the main target for the immediate future.
Good luck to FAF and all who Faff around within.

Andy


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Subject: RE: Folk Against Fascism
From: Rifleman (inactive)
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 11:12 AM

Been thinking about this.....

""given some of the people already supporting this, we're not talking pie-in-the-sky - something exciting is going to happen"

I'll wait and see how far some people are willing to go with this issue.


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