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Night Visiting, Earliest revival version

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NIGHT VISITING SONG


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Steve Gardham 18 Jan 10 - 06:41 PM
RTim 18 Jan 10 - 06:49 PM
RTim 18 Jan 10 - 06:53 PM
RTim 18 Jan 10 - 07:02 PM
Jim Carroll 18 Jan 10 - 08:06 PM
Ferrara 18 Jan 10 - 08:23 PM
Arkie 18 Jan 10 - 08:24 PM
Ferrara 18 Jan 10 - 08:27 PM
Richard Bridge 18 Jan 10 - 08:28 PM
Les in Chorlton 19 Jan 10 - 03:38 AM
GUEST,EKanne 19 Jan 10 - 03:59 AM
Les in Chorlton 19 Jan 10 - 04:03 AM
GUEST,EKanne 19 Jan 10 - 04:29 AM
Bryn Pugh 19 Jan 10 - 05:01 AM
peregrina 19 Jan 10 - 05:16 AM
Terry McDonald 19 Jan 10 - 05:31 AM
Jim Carroll 19 Jan 10 - 05:47 AM
Steve Gardham 19 Jan 10 - 06:23 AM
Jim Carroll 19 Jan 10 - 06:34 AM
GUEST,Ed 19 Jan 10 - 06:49 AM
MGM·Lion 19 Jan 10 - 07:07 AM
Les in Chorlton 19 Jan 10 - 09:59 AM
Steve Gardham 19 Jan 10 - 10:16 AM
GUEST,jim bainbridge 28 May 14 - 04:59 PM
GUEST,Gealt 05 Nov 14 - 02:54 PM
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Subject: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 18 Jan 10 - 06:41 PM

Hi,
I'm interested in finding the version of Night Visiting Song that was sung in harmony by lots of groups in the 60s. I don't need the text as I can sing it already. I think it was the version popularised by Ray and Archie Fisher. Was this the earliest version? I am not wanting references to Willy O, or The Grey Cock. What was the source of the song that starts 'I must away, love, I can no longer tarry. This morning's tempest I have to cross. I must be guided without a stumble into the ar---ms of my dear lass.' I am well aware of those versions that have a different starting verse and I know in most versions recorded this is actually the second verse.

I'd contact Ray but I know she is rather unwell at the moment.

Thanks for looking,
SteveG


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: RTim
Date: 18 Jan 10 - 06:49 PM

You don't mean the one in Purslow's Marrowbones do you?

http://www.folkinfo.org/songs/displaysong.php?songid=242


Tim Radford


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: RTim
Date: 18 Jan 10 - 06:53 PM

Gardiner got it from Will. Stockley and he called it The Lovers Ghost or Time Has Come.
It is Roud 192 - and the original can be found in the Take6 files as The Loveres Ghost.

Tim


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: RTim
Date: 18 Jan 10 - 07:02 PM

Oops - Roud 179...although that looks a little suspect?

Tim


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 18 Jan 10 - 08:06 PM

It was first issued on a Topic EP (Far Over The Forth?) and I have in mind that wherever the text came from, the tune was a Breton one they put to it.
As has been said, the text appears to be based on William Stockley's version, but has been adapted, either by Purslow (The Wanton Seed) or by the singers.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: Ferrara
Date: 18 Jan 10 - 08:23 PM

This is from memory so there will be mistakes. I believe it's from Norman Kennedy's. Maybe it's what you're looking for.

The time has come, I can no longer tarry
This morning's tempest I must shortly brave
To cross the moors and high towering mountains
Until I'm in the arms of my own true love.

He rode til he came to his true love's dwelling
And knelt down gently upon a stone
And whispered softly into her window
"Does my own true love lie there alone?"

She lifted her head up from off her down white pillow
She lifted the blankets from off her breast
And raised herself up onto an elbow,
"Who's that disturbing me from my night's rest?"

"'Tis I, 'tis I, 'tis I your own true lover,
Pray open the door, love, and let me in
For I am wet, love, and also weary,
For I am wet, love, unto the skin."

She's raised herself up with the greatest of pleasure,
She's opened the door and she's let him in
And all that night they lay in each other's arms
Until that long night was past and gone.

And when that long night was past and over,
And when the small cocks began to crow
He's shook her hand, aye, they've kissed and parted
He's saddled and bridled and away did go.

... Well there's one line that escapes me right now. I suspect it will come back, or I can probably locate the album. Hope this is what you want.

Rita Ferrara


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: Arkie
Date: 18 Jan 10 - 08:24 PM

I heard Norman Kennedy sing this ages ago.


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: Ferrara
Date: 18 Jan 10 - 08:27 PM

Should have checked first ... this version is in the DT.


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 18 Jan 10 - 08:28 PM

Surely it is Burns with a chorus added later. That's what the late Pete Hicks used to say anyway, and he was there in the revival soup having been the replacement banjo player for a certain Donegan in a certain jazz band.


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: Les in Chorlton
Date: 19 Jan 10 - 03:38 AM

Alasdair Clayre, "100 Folk Songs and New Songs", World's End Music 1968,and Wolfe Publications 1969, gives the words quoted above by Rita Ferrara and gives Ray & Archie as the source with no other details.

L in C


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: GUEST,EKanne
Date: 19 Jan 10 - 03:59 AM

Jim -- I'm fairly certain that the Breton tune to which you refer was, in fact, the tune attached to "The Twa Corbies".
I heard Ray and Archie sing this song often in the early/mid-60s and (as I remember it) the introduction moved from night visiting into bundling customs, with no real mention of source. It was certainly a very popular song at the time, probably because it had a sweet tune which was easily harmonised (for those who wanted to) and could be accompanied readily with a simple guitar ripple.


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: Les in Chorlton
Date: 19 Jan 10 - 04:03 AM

Stivell and comany do a rattling version of a song which clearly has Twa Corbies as the tune. Twa Corbies itself is well established with a fairly consistant set of words from way back.

L in C


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: GUEST,EKanne
Date: 19 Jan 10 - 04:29 AM

Sorry -- forgot to say that the Breton tune (for Twa Corbies) came from Glasgow schoolteacher Morris Blythman, who was taught it by Breton folk-singer Zaig Montjarret (with an acute accent on the e!). Morris recognised the 'rightness' of the match and it began to be sung around, and was also published in a weekly series of Scottish folksongs that Norman Buchan provided for the Weekly Scotsman newspaper in the late 50s/1960 or so. The songs in this column became the impetus for the eventual publication of Norman's "101 Scottish Songs".
To go off on a wee divert, both Norman and Morris were English teachers and had folk clubs in their respective schools (Rutherglen Academy and Allan Glen's), they were close friends and both shared their book and record libraries generously with interested youngsters. Ray and Archie were brought up just a couple of streets away from Norman's house, and were often round there looking for songs, and when Norman and his wife Janey began putting on concerts with visiting singers like Cisco Houston etc., Ray and Archie were often included on the bill. So, although it was a sizeable city, Glasgow's folk music community was close-linked.
Apologies for any thread drift.


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: Bryn Pugh
Date: 19 Jan 10 - 05:01 AM

Here is the version that Jeannie Carpenter and I sang, in the mid to late 1960s. I had this from the singing of Ray and Archie Fisher.

I must away now, I can no longer tarry.
The morning tempest I have to cross :
I must be guided without a stumble
Unto the arms I love the most.

And whe he's come to his true love's dwelling -
He's knelt down gently upon a stone.
And through the window he's whispered slowly :
'Is my true lover within at home ?'

She's raised her head from off her down-white pillow.
She's raised the blanket from off her breast -
And through the window she's whispered slowly
'Who's that disturbing me at my night's rest ?'

'Wake up, wake up, love - it is your own true lover.
Wake up, wake up, love and let me in.
For I am wet, love, and also weary -
For I am wet, love, unto my skin.'

She's raised her up then, with the grandest pleasure.
She's raised her up and she's let him in.
And they lay locked in each others' arms
Until that long night was past and gone.

And whn that long night was past and over.
And whn the smoke clouds began to form -
He's taken her hand, aye - they've kissed and parted.
He's saddled and mounted and away did roam.

Hope this helps.


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: peregrina
Date: 19 Jan 10 - 05:16 AM

The notes on the record cover for "Far over the Forth" by Ray and Archie Fisher say the following about the Night Visiting Song:

"This is a composite version from field recordings made by Hamish Henderson. There is a whole series of night visiting songs in Scotland ranging from the bawdy, such as the "Laird o' Windy Wa's " to the tender. This is a particularly good version of the latter. An English version, "The Grey Cock", but with supernatural overtones, may be found in the "Penguin Book of English Folk Songs"


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: Terry McDonald
Date: 19 Jan 10 - 05:31 AM

Bryn's version is exactly as I/we learnt it in the mid sixties from, I think, Exeter Folk Club's 'Journeymen' (Ken Penney et al).


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 19 Jan 10 - 05:47 AM

EKanne
Thanks for the correction - I'm sure you are right.
I thought I might still have the EP, but couldn't find it.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 19 Jan 10 - 06:23 AM

Wow! What an amazing response! Between you all, you have I think covered what I needed. Many thanks. Mary, spot on. Basically it was a composite version from Hamish's recordings but first popularised by Ray and Archie. I am including this in the notes to the new edition of Wanton Seed.

As a thankyou I include here the new Roud numbers hot off the press for the 3 different songs previously classified in roud as 179.
Those versions of Child 248 and known as The Grey Cock including Joyce and most American versions will retain the 179 number. Our song posted above including 'I'm a Rover Seldom Sober' will be 22568, and the Irish 'Willy O'/Biscayo' will be 22567.

If I can impose upon you all a little further I'll include here a third draft of my note for your comments if that's okay.

'One of the most beautiful and popular songs in the English-speaking canon, this song has a variety of versions, made confusing by the fact that the first stanza (lacking here) can be any one of three markedly different ones. the most popular versions in the last century
appear to have originated in Scotland. In the 1960s when this version was first published two very different Scottish versions became very popular. Harmony groups from John O' Groats to Land's End warbled away a gentle version popularised by Ray and Archie fisher, and in direct contrast, but no less popular, James Grant's 'I'm a Rover' in 9:8 was roared out in the bar-room with great gusto. Both of these were eclipsed by Cecilia Costello's hauntingly beautiful 'Grey Cock', undoubtedly one of the greatest folk songs of all time, albeit a collation of three different songs, Night Visit Song (first 5 stanzas) , The Grey Cock (Roud 179, Child 248), and an Irish broadside ballad, 'Willy O' (Roud 22567) A mixture of these last two form the final 5 stanzas. Whoever strung these stanzas together in ireland was a musical genius.'


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 19 Jan 10 - 06:34 AM

"Whoever strung these stanzas together in ireland was a musical genius.'"
Assuming, of course, it was an individual who strung them together and not the result of a folk process - nah - couldn't be; the non literate Bill Cassidy and all his Traveller couterparts must have got them from a book!!!
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: GUEST,Ed
Date: 19 Jan 10 - 06:49 AM

Hi Steve,

You don't know me, but may I suggest that you get rid of the undoubtedly one of the greatest folk songs of all time phrase? I don't disagree with you, but it's too much personal opinion. Let the reader decide such things.

The last sentence that Jim Carroll refers to should also be ditched. It serves no purpose.

Otherwise, great. Just my opinion, obviously.

Ed


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 19 Jan 10 - 07:07 AM

Why GUEST·Ed, this is an opinion forum — no point denouncing others for "too much personal opinion": esp when it's "Just [your] opinion, obviously".

That's my opinion on the matter 4 U! IMO ...

Regards - Michael


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: Les in Chorlton
Date: 19 Jan 10 - 09:59 AM

What a surprise - a fascinating, thoughtful, well researched collection of posts turns unpleasant around post 20.

Cheers

L in C


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 19 Jan 10 - 10:16 AM

Michael,
Actually thanks for the defence, but I think Ed could be right. I wasn't just expressing an opinion on the forum, I had put down what I was intending to write as notes to a version of the song in the book, and perhaps I should delete those descriptions, or at least add the word 'arguably'. It certainly is a personal opinion.

Jim,
You are very likely correct if we were discussing discussing Bill Cassidy's hybrid version which is mixed up in all sorts of ways with Willy O and Night Visit (No Grey Cock)

BUT the description is of Cecilia Costello's version which is a very different kettle of fish.

The first 5 stanzas are a straight take from 'Night Visiting Song'.
Stanzas 6 and 9 are straight from Willy O and the other 3 stanzas are taken from a version of 'The Grey Cock'. Nowhere else does a combination anything like this occur (unless you know better of course). To me this is a very deliberate collation. Have another CLOSE look and then give us your opinion.

If you wish I can give you a similar breakdown of Bill's version which is very different to Cecilia Costello's. Bill's version certainly does have the hallmarks of passing through much oral tradition.


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: GUEST,jim bainbridge
Date: 28 May 14 - 04:59 PM

returning to Ireland after many years, I'm struck by how popular this song is among singers at singing sessions as well as singers more of the 'folk/pub singer' persuasion. From time spent in West Cork in the 90s I always thought that 'Willie McBride' was the most popular 'folk' song in Ireland, but might have to revise that opinion now...
       have just come across this and my theory now is still that Luke Kelly heard Ray & Archie singing it & it spread around Ireland from there- there are obviously some parallel storylines in Ireland, but it is pretty certainly, in the usual version certainly Scots rather than Irish- whatever. it's still a great song, so well done Ray & Archie and Luke too!


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Subject: RE: Night Visiting, Earliest revival version
From: GUEST,Gealt
Date: 05 Nov 14 - 02:54 PM

I've just heard the version below sung by Laura Cortese of Halali (Artist: Laura Cortese Song:I Must Away Love Album: Hush)on Folk Alley.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I2KgbgGzL2A

Not a patch on Ray Fisher or Luke Kelly.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rwUXa3VdCUI

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6WMttFDFI44


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