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Lyr Add: Tambo / Tam Bo, Tam Bo

Bren Ború 20 Jun 09 - 09:02 AM
GUEST,leeneia 20 Jun 09 - 09:50 AM
Declan 20 Jun 09 - 04:48 PM
Bren Ború 20 Jun 09 - 05:05 PM
Peace 20 Jun 09 - 05:17 PM
MartinRyan 20 Jun 09 - 05:17 PM
MartinRyan 20 Jun 09 - 05:19 PM
Peace 20 Jun 09 - 05:20 PM
Peace 20 Jun 09 - 05:22 PM
MartinRyan 20 Jun 09 - 05:25 PM
Peace 20 Jun 09 - 05:26 PM
Peace 20 Jun 09 - 05:29 PM
Peace 20 Jun 09 - 05:32 PM
Peace 20 Jun 09 - 05:38 PM
Bren Ború 20 Jun 09 - 05:46 PM
Declan 21 Jun 09 - 07:26 PM
Jim Dixon 01 Jul 09 - 08:10 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 01 Jul 09 - 08:50 PM
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Subject: Lyr Add: TAMBO
From: Bren Ború
Date: 20 Jun 09 - 09:02 AM

I am interested in any information anyone might have about this song. Where did it originate and who wrote it? The words (as they sound to me) are as follows but I'd appreciate any corrections and any info on "sloans":

TAMBO

Will you hire with me Tambo Tambo
Will you hire with me my love and my joe
Will you hire with me say you and say I
Oh and what a rattlin' young widow am I

What will the wages be mistress

Two pounds and five shillings Tambo Tambo
Two pounds and five shillings my love and my joe
Two pounds and five shillings say you and say I
Oh and what a rattlin' young widow am I

That's too little wages mistress

Then two pounds and ten shillings Tambo Tambo
Then two pounds and ten shillings my love and my joe
Then two pounds and ten shillings say you and say I
Oh and what a rattlin' young widow am I

What will I eat mistress

Sloans and eels Tambo Tambo
Sloans and eels my love and my joe
Sloans and eels say you and say I
Oh and what a rattlin' young widow am I

That's too slippy a diet mistress

Then potatoes and beef Tambo Tambo
Then potatoes and beef My love and my joe
Then potatoes and beef Say you and say I
Oh and what a rattlin' young widow am I

Where will I lie mistress

You'll lie in the loft Tambo Tambo
You'll lie in the loft my love and my joe
You'll lie in the loft say you and say I
Oh and what a rattlin' young widow am I

But the rats might bite me mistress

Then you'll lie with the wains Tambo Tambo
Then you'll lie with the wains my love and my joe
Then you'll lie with the wains say you and say I
Oh and what a rattlin' young widow am I

But the wains might kick me mistress

Then you'll lie with me Tambo Tambo
Then you'll lie with me my love and my joe
Then you'll lie with me say you and say I
Oh and what a rattlin' young widow am I

But that wouldn't be right mistress

Then we shall be married Tambo Tambo
Then we shall be married my love and my joe
Then we shall be married say you and say I
Oh and what a rattlin' young widow am I

Mistress you have me hired


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Subject: RE: Tambo, Origins and Words
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 20 Jun 09 - 09:50 AM

Well, 'slone' is dialect for 'sloe,' and a sloe is the fruit of the blackthorn tree.

That'll work.


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Subject: RE: Tambo, Origins and Words
From: Declan
Date: 20 Jun 09 - 04:48 PM

There's a version on this on Frank Harte's posthumous CD "There's gangs of them digging". When I get a chance I'll post any information given in the notes here (if someone doesn't beat me to it).


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Subject: RE: Tambo, Origins and Words
From: Bren Ború
Date: 20 Jun 09 - 05:05 PM

Thanks leeneia, I wouldn't have thought of sloes.

Thanks Declan, I didn't know that Frank Harte had recorded it. I'll check it out.


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Subject: RE: Tambo, Origins and Words
From: Peace
Date: 20 Jun 09 - 05:17 PM

This is from an older thread.


"Subject: Lyr Add: Magherafelt Hiring Fair
From: GUEST,Philippa
Date: 04 Apr 03 - 06:57 AM

A widow goes to Magherafelt to hire a farm worker and ends up marrying one who drives a hard bargain!

1. "Would you hire with me, Tam Bo, Tam Bo?
Would you hire with me, my heart and my Jo?
Would you hire with me? say you and say I.
And what an's rantin' young widow am I.

(He says: "What wages, mistress?")

2. "Two pounds five," etc.

(He says: "Too little wages, mistress")

3. "Then two pounds ten," etc

(He says: "What diet, mistress?")

4. "Sowans and eels," etc. -
or"Sowans, oats and water porridge"

(He says: "Too slippy diet, mistres?")

5. "Then potatoes and beef ...

(He says: "Where will I lie, mistress?")

6. "You'll lie in the loft,"

(He says: "The rats might eat me, mistress")

7. "You'll lie wi' the weans," ...

(He says: "The weans might kick me, mistress")

8. "Well then we'll get married," ...

When I saw this thread the first song that came into my mind was the Magherafelt May Fair (which has been recorded by Kevin Mitchell). The song above also bears Magherafelt in the title, but could belong almost anywhere. I see it has been mentioned in previous threads, and also as "Tam Boy". I copied these lyrics from a booklet by George Sweeny, "Hiring Fairs in Derry, Tyrone and Donegal". Derry: Guildhall Press,n.d. (circa 1985-86). I assume the "etc." menas that the ends of each line are repeated from verse to verse.

Tune to follow (eventually!)

The bibliography suggests a couple of other songs (which I might post later on if nobody else has done so):
"Hiring Fair (I Once Was a Daysman)" recording of Eddie Butcher on Free Reed Records
"The Hiring Fair at Hamiltons Bawn" published in Robin Morton Folk Songs Sung in Ulster. Cork: Mercier Press (is in DT)

and includes
Hugh Shields, Shamrock, Rose and Thistle: Folk Singing in North Derry. Belfast: Blackstaff, 1981

Jonathan Bell,"The Hiring Fairs" in Ulster Folkllife"

Patrick Campbell, "Growing Up in Donegal" in Béalóideas, 1977


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Subject: RE: Tambo, Origins and Words
From: MartinRyan
Date: 20 Jun 09 - 05:17 PM

Mmmmmmm.... My recollection is that the word is "sowans" or such. As to what it means? Let me check.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Tambo, Origins and Words
From: MartinRyan
Date: 20 Jun 09 - 05:19 PM

Oops, Peace! Crossposted.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Tambo, Origins and Words
From: Peace
Date: 20 Jun 09 - 05:20 PM

See also this bibliographical reference.


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Subject: RE: Tambo, Origins and Words
From: Peace
Date: 20 Jun 09 - 05:22 PM

Hi, Martin. It's a good memory you have. For me, it was Mr Google who led me back to Mudcat.


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Subject: RE: Tambo, Origins and Words
From: MartinRyan
Date: 20 Jun 09 - 05:25 PM

SOED gives

sowens : A kind of porridge made from oat husks and fine meal steeped in water and allowed to ferment slightly.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Tambo, Origins and Words
From: Peace
Date: 20 Jun 09 - 05:26 PM

http://trad.appspot.com/song/Tam_Buie_(Tam_Bo,_Magherafelt_Hiring_Fair)


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Subject: RE: Tambo, Origins and Words
From: Peace
Date: 20 Jun 09 - 05:29 PM

Last for a bit:

Google

Magherafelt Hiring Fair

without quotations. Lost to dig around in on the page that comes up. It's times like this we'd all benefit greatly from Malcolm's voice.


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Subject: RE: Tambo, Origins and Words
From: Peace
Date: 20 Jun 09 - 05:32 PM

"Frank Harte "There's Gangs of Them Digging"
Label: Daisy; DLCD022; 2007; Playing time: 77:47 min
If you just have to know one Irish folk singer and song collector, it is the late great Frank Harte (-> FW#7, FW#30). Frank passed away in 2005 (-> FW#31), having just completed the recording of "There's Gangs of Them Digging". His collection of Irish labour songs, the title is a quote from the song "Mountains of Mourne" by Percy French who not only had been a vaudeville artist but also an inspector of drains, spans three centuries -- before the arrival of the Celtic Tiger in Ireland. From the spailpíní, the migratory harvestmen, who were looking just for seasonal work all over Ireland or Scotland to the navvies who spent the rest of their lives in Britain and America to build roads and railways, the underground and hydro dams (having fiddles and flutes in their cases to spread the gospel of traditional Irish music too). Frank Harte, having been architect as an occupation so he knows the trade, is at his best digging up familiar tunes such as "Galbally Farmer", "Blantyre Explosion", "Hot Asphalt", Dominic Behan's "McAlpine's Fusiliers" and Ewan MacColl's "Tunnel Tigers", and moreover the unfamiliar songs from the Irish song tradition such as "Tambo" (The Magherafelt Hiring Fair), "When the Breakers Go Back On Full Time" or Kieran Halpin's "Aran Labourer" written in the late 1970's when Kieran (-> FW#31) was working on a building site in London. "There's Gangs of Them Digging" is a labour of love, the songs unaccompanied or sparsely accompanied by Donal Lunny, With its extensive liner notes it is the consummate legacy, as perfect as anything he did in his lifetime. Thank you, Frank! Rest in peace!
Daisy
Walkin' T:-)M"


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Subject: RE: Tambo, Origins and Words
From: Peace
Date: 20 Jun 09 - 05:38 PM

BARGAIN WITH ME - "Where are you going to, my boy, Billy Boy?" - Duologue Hiring Song - ROUD#366 - BUCHAN 1828 2 241 (Tune: Laird o Cockpen) - DUNCAN W254 M62 "The Rigwiggy Carlin" - FMJ 1:2 1966 pp78-80 Duncan: Mrs Gillespie 1905 "The Rigwiddy Carlin" (Tune: Kenure's on an awa or Hexham Races) - HENRY SOP #478/ HUNTINGTON 1990 p263 "Magherafelt Hiring Fair" ("Tam Bo") - KENNEDY FSBI 1975 p450 Dicky Lashbrook 1950 9v/m - PALMER EBBB 1980 #100 pp201-202 Sam Henry #748 "Magherafelt Hiring Fair" - aka: BILLY BOY - HIRING FAIR - RIGWIDDY CARLIN - SEEKING SERVICE - TAM BO or TAM BUIE) - Cf BILLY BOY - JOAN TO JAN - WHEN SHALL WE GET MARRIED? -- Alex ROBB, New Deer, Aberdeensh #323 rec on Dictaphone cylinder by James M Carpenter 1929-35 "Rigwiddy Carlin" - Dicky LASHBROOK (chimney sweep) rec by PK, Kelly, Lifton, Devon 1950 & 1952: RPL 17796/ FTX-019/ FTX-407 "Where are you going to, my boy, Billy boy?" - Duncan McPHEE rec by PK, Perth 1954: RTR#1127 & 1132/ FTX-183 "Tam Buie" (tune: Campbells are coming) - Maud BRASIL (tinker aged 17) rec by PK, Blairgowrie, Perthsh "O faer ye gaun, Will Boy?" - Bertha (of Belfast) with Tom BROWN (of Caister, Norfolk) rec by PK, Harberton, Devon 25/3/79 FTX-134 "Magherafelt Hiring Fair" --- Cajun version, Louisiana: ARHOOLIE 5009 "La Patate Chaude"


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Subject: RE: Tambo, Origins and Words
From: Bren Ború
Date: 20 Jun 09 - 05:46 PM

Wow !!!

You are going to keep me busy for a while looking at all that. Thanks for all the info.


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Subject: RE: Tambo, Origins and Words
From: Declan
Date: 21 Jun 09 - 07:26 PM

From the booklet accompanying the "There's gangs of them digging" CD:

"This song was colected by Sam Henry in Tobermore in 1938; it is listed in his collection as No. 748 and is titled as "The Magherafelt Hiring Fair". He said that at the time he collected it the song was at least 150 years old and that the diet of sowans and eels would establish the locality of the song,by this I presume that he was assuming that the listener would know that Magherafelt, being so close to Lough Neagh, would have a plentiful supply of eels from its famous eel fishery. Sowans was an article of diet in common use in Ireland. It consisted of farinasceous matter extracted from the bran or husks of oats by steeping in water, allowed to ferment slightly and prepared by boiling. Except for the first line of the first verse, the first line of each of the following verses is spoken.

The only other person I have heard singing this song was Valerie Baillie when she sang it as amemebr of 'The Irish Country Four' on one of the old Topic Records, which was recorded in 1971. I have never heard the song sung at a singing session. THe song takes into consideration all the various requirements that would be in the mind of a labourer lookig to hire, such as what wages he would have, how he would be fed, and where he would sleep. He certainly did much better than the spailpin that hired to the Galbally Farmer in Tippereary. Unlike Sam Henry's very proper ending with the marriage of the couple, in some of the other versions of the song, when the labourer declined to sleep with the weans, the woman of the house did indeed offer her the comfort of her own bed.

While I have only heard one version in Ireland, there are several versions that have been collected in England and Scotland. Peter Kennedy recorded one from Dicky Lashbrook in Devon in 1950 called "Bargain with me" or "Billy Boy". THe first publication of the song was in Peter Buchan's "Ancient Ballads and Songs of the North of Scotland in 1828, although the song is much older than the date of publication. The different versions of the song vary in the directness of their sexual references and bawdy content."

That should be enough information to keep you going for a while. If you want any further information I suggest you buy the CD, which as you might expect is well worth the asking Price. More info at www.daisydiscs.com.


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Subject: Lyr Add: TAM BO, TAM BO (Allan Cunningham)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 01 Jul 09 - 08:10 PM

From Poems and Songs by Allan Cunningham, with an introduction, glossary and notes by Peter Cunningham (London: John Murray, 1847):


TAM BO, TAM BO.

"Will ye fee wi' me, Tam Bo, Tam Bo,
Will ye fee wi' me, my heart and my jo'?
An' yese be at hame like my tae e'e,
If ye'll fee wi' a pitifu' widow like me."

Tam Bo was steeve and Tam Bo was stark,
Wi' an e'e like puss and a voice like a lark;
The widow was rosie and weel to leeve,
Wi' sense in her noddle and silk in her sleeve.

"I'll gie ye marks three, Tam Bo, Tam Bo,
Three lily white sarks, my heart and my jo',
An' mony braw things when there's nane to see,
If ye'll fee wi' a pitifu' widow like me.

"A gliff i' the gloaming to daut and woo,
A gude sharp sock and a weel gaun plough;
Wi' a simmer sun and a lilie lea;
Will ye fee wi' a pitifu' widow like me?

"A cozie bed and a cannie darke,
An' late to rise and soon frae wark,
A kindlie kiss and uncounted fee;
Will ye fee wi' a pitifu' widow like me?"

"Thae bright een gang through me like swords,
And thy ripe lips hae weel waled words,
That may win my saul and then work it woe,
We are fallible creatures," quo' douce Tam Bo.

Now what to do or say or look,
Tam wistna while the widow she took
Frae her silken purse the gowd sae free;
"Will ye fee wi' a pitifu' widow like me?"

Tam yoked the plough, he furrowed the lea,
He sowed the corn, and he pouched his fee,
While the widow she sang neither lowne nor lowe,
"He's a capital bargain, this young Tam Bo."


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Tambo
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 01 Jul 09 - 08:50 PM

Several variants.

In Sam Henry, see "Magarafelt Hiring Fair," "Tam Buie."


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