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Transatlantic folk flak

MGM·Lion 11 Oct 09 - 02:33 AM
Peace 11 Oct 09 - 03:03 AM
MGM·Lion 11 Oct 09 - 03:16 AM
Peace 11 Oct 09 - 03:23 AM
GUEST,Gerry 11 Oct 09 - 06:53 AM
MGM·Lion 11 Oct 09 - 09:10 AM
BobKnight 11 Oct 09 - 11:15 AM
MGM·Lion 11 Oct 09 - 11:47 AM
Midchuck 11 Oct 09 - 05:26 PM
Peace 11 Oct 09 - 05:29 PM
Uncle_DaveO 11 Oct 09 - 07:27 PM
Uncle_DaveO 11 Oct 09 - 07:29 PM
Peace 11 Oct 09 - 07:30 PM
frogprince 11 Oct 09 - 08:27 PM
GUEST,Gerry 11 Oct 09 - 09:09 PM
Midchuck 11 Oct 09 - 09:44 PM
Rapparee 11 Oct 09 - 10:50 PM
Little Robyn 12 Oct 09 - 02:13 AM
meself 12 Oct 09 - 09:42 AM
Little Robyn 12 Oct 09 - 03:09 PM
Sue Allan 12 Oct 09 - 04:02 PM
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Subject: Transatlantic folk flak
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 11 Oct 09 - 02:33 AM

'The Gaslight which at that time was run by Sam Hood -- who named his daughter Robin,' wrote Peace on another [Dylan talking nonsense?]] thread.

This raised in me the thought that the fact that Robin is a man's name in UK but a woman's in US, while Marian is always a woman in UK but a man in US (it was John Wayne, Big·Ole·Rooster·Cogburn·Himself's real name, gorblimey!) has the potential to raise all kinds of intercontinental misapprehensions, and thoughts of role reversal, when it comes to the Robin Hood ballads.

Another source of misunderstanding between the Folkies of our nations, I have discovered over the years, concerns the Child ballad of Lord Thomas & Fair Annette [or, more usually, Elinor: but Child himself uses Annette, tho Elinor is more widespread], #73. The heroine's rival for Lord Thomas's affections is referred to in all versions as The Brown Girl; so American singers, publishers, collectors &c tend to refer to this ballad under the title of The Brown Girl. BUT that is the actual title, given by Child, for another of his ballads, #295 ? the one about the man who rejects his lover for being 'too brown' but then wants her back or he will die for love, whereupon she justifiably responds that when he does her mourning will take the form of dancing on his grave. This confusion between the titles of the two ballads [which appears to me to be a purely American phenomenon, Brit singers &c resolutely retaining the distinction in naming the ballads] as I say furnishes a constant, if minor, source of misunderstandings between the nations.

Can anyone think of any other examples of confusing folkloric differences of usage?


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Subject: RE: Transatlantic folk flak
From: Peace
Date: 11 Oct 09 - 03:03 AM

My goodness. Where to start.

Before I came to Mudcat I knew what traditional music was. And folk music. I still do, but no one else in the world agrees with me. How can sooo many people be wrong?

Many songs share a 'similar' history to that of Child #295. I'm thinking of "House of the Rising Sun" and "St Jame's Hospital".

Streets of Laredo. Where does THAT fit?

Good thread, Michael.


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Subject: RE: Transatlantic folk flak
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 11 Oct 09 - 03:16 AM

Well, Streets of Laredo, [& also its variant Lee Tharin's Barroom sung so inimitably by Hedy West]: all part of the huge Unfortunate Rake/Young Man·Girl Cut Down In Prime/St James Hospital·Infirmary family of songs; which have the charming, & almost universal, attribute of the demand for the Funeral With Full Military Honours even where not the least appropriate, as with gamblers-girls-cowboys ? tho why, right from the start when it often was a Young Soldier/Sailor, he should have thought that dying of the pox warranted such a display of Military Glory has never been quite clear to me.

Many thanks for your kind words about the thread.


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Subject: RE: Transatlantic folk flak
From: Peace
Date: 11 Oct 09 - 03:23 AM

" . . . why, right from the start when it often was a Young Soldier/Sailor, he should have thought that dying of the pox warranted such a display of Military Glory has never been quite clear to me."

Thanks. I have a mouthful of coffee on my keyboard.


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Subject: RE: Transatlantic folk flak
From: GUEST,Gerry
Date: 11 Oct 09 - 06:53 AM

Robin is not unknown as a man's name in the US - the Baseball Hall Of Fame counts Robin Roberts and Robin Yount among its members - and John Wayne's name was Marion, not Marian.

I was very surprised the first time someone in England offered to knock me up in the morning, as I took this to be an obvious biological impossibility.


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Subject: RE: Transatlantic folk flak
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 11 Oct 09 - 09:10 AM

Sorry: thank you; yes, I knew that; but Marian & Marion are sort of interchangeable here - in versions of Robin Hood as well as in naming daughters. As you say, Robin can do for either in US; & increasingly, thru US influence, here, tho female form often spelt with a -y-; and even then it's sort of rare. Can Marion/Marian be a female name in US also?


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Subject: RE: Transatlantic folk flak
From: BobKnight
Date: 11 Oct 09 - 11:15 AM

Vivian, and Hilary can be male names in some parts of the UK - mostly south east England. I'd hate to think what might happen to a kid (male) with that name here in Scotland


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Subject: RE: Transatlantic folk flak
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 11 Oct 09 - 11:47 AM

We're drifting a bit on to the question of androgynous names: interestingly, both Vivian & Hilary started off as definitely male ? how/why did they get hijacked? And how funny of the Scots to think them in any way eccentric ? and what would happen round here to a man poncing around in a skirt? {Only joking, honest ? put your skian-dhu awa' - aaaarrrrrggggghhh!!!}!

Another [I find] unnecessarily confusing phenomenon is that you never know nowadays whether a Sam is Samuel or Samantha; a Harry, Henry or Harriet or Angharad; a Charlie, Charles or Charlotte. Bring back the distinctions by Law; that's what I say.

And now, please ? nuff o' names ? let's have some more folkie-flak!


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Subject: RE: Transatlantic folk flak
From: Midchuck
Date: 11 Oct 09 - 05:26 PM

I get pissed when British people describe me as "pissed," when I'm actually very happy indeed!

Peter


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Subject: RE: Transatlantic folk flak
From: Peace
Date: 11 Oct 09 - 05:29 PM

"Put your boots in the car."

"My boot's already IN the car."


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Subject: RE: Transatlantic folk flak
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 11 Oct 09 - 07:27 PM

Peace said, in part:

Robin is a man's name in UK but a woman's in US, while Marian is always a woman in UK but a man in US (it was John Wayne, Big·Ole·Rooster·Cogburn·Himself's real name, gorblimey!)

I haven't bothered to look it up, as I should, but I believe his name was not "Marian" but "Marion". At least that is, as I understand it, the male version.   I stand to be corrected, if wrong in this.


Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: Transatlantic folk flak
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 11 Oct 09 - 07:29 PM

My father-in-law was named Courtney, which is what I understand always to have been a male name, but it's been stolen of recent years, more's the pity!

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: Transatlantic folk flak
From: Peace
Date: 11 Oct 09 - 07:30 PM

Only thing I'd correct, Dave, is that I didn't say that. MtheGM said it.


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Subject: RE: Transatlantic folk flak
From: frogprince
Date: 11 Oct 09 - 08:27 PM

At one point in life I had friends known as Ricky, Sam. Charlie, Ralph, and Carol. Carol was the male.


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Subject: RE: Transatlantic folk flak
From: GUEST,Gerry
Date: 11 Oct 09 - 09:09 PM

I can't think of any other examples of confusing folkloric differences of usage, except for the one we just discussed a few days ago, the different usage of "folk rock" on either side of the Atlantic.

As for Marion as a US female name, see this song


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Subject: RE: Transatlantic folk flak
From: Midchuck
Date: 11 Oct 09 - 09:44 PM

At one point in life I had friends known as Ricky, Sam. Charlie, Ralph, and Carol. Carol was the male.

My last name (and that of my father and his and so back to the late 1600's, anyway,) is Cady. Lately that's become a popular first name to give girls. I wonder if there's a Cady Cady anywhere, yet - or if some bride had to keep her maiden name so it wouldn't happen.

Peter.


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Subject: RE: Transatlantic folk flak
From: Rapparee
Date: 11 Oct 09 - 10:50 PM

I went to college with woman named something like Robert Alice Young -- she was born after her father had died and was sort of named for him. Her sex as quite apparent, but she was drafted TWICE. The first time she explained it all, including her birth cert, and the draft board wrote and said okay, all is in order and we understand why you didn't register and just forget it.

Then a couple years later she received a second draft notice. This time she send a note saying she couldn't appear for immediate induction because "my fiance wouldn't like it." She never heard from the again.

I think it best to assume you shouldn't assume.

My wife once rode around Dingle in the boot with cousin. And "Put on your old gray bonnet" takes on a whole new meaning.


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Subject: RE: Transatlantic folk flak
From: Little Robyn
Date: 12 Oct 09 - 02:13 AM

Down under, Robyn with a Y is a girl's name while Robin with an I is the male version.
When I went to England and introduced myself, people often raised their eyebrows.
Robyn


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Subject: RE: Transatlantic folk flak
From: meself
Date: 12 Oct 09 - 09:42 AM

Um .... why? Did they raise their eyebrows, that is.


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Subject: RE: Transatlantic folk flak
From: Little Robyn
Date: 12 Oct 09 - 03:09 PM

Cos they thought I was a funny lookin fella!
Actually, in 1972, on an old train from London going south to visit a Northumbrian piper living there, I was wearing my jeans and a jacket. I held open a carriage door for a little old lady and she said "Thank you sonny." I just smiled. Well, I'm not very big and my hair is usually cut short but I did'nt think I was particularly masculine.
Robyn


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Subject: RE: Transatlantic folk flak
From: Sue Allan
Date: 12 Oct 09 - 04:02 PM

Midchuck - I know someone with the surname Cadie, and I pointed out to him that in the Wigton version of Cumbrian dialect a cadie was a hat,and he said the same applied in the north east ... it may be a Romany word. So, hello Mr Hat!


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