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Lyr Req: The Collier Lad (from Annie Cosgrove)

GUEST,AR 15 Feb 11 - 09:48 AM
Fred McCormick 15 Feb 11 - 12:09 PM
GUEST,AR 15 Feb 11 - 12:48 PM
Little Robyn 15 Feb 11 - 01:18 PM
Little Robyn 15 Feb 11 - 01:23 PM
GUEST,AR 15 Feb 11 - 01:39 PM
Steve Gardham 15 Feb 11 - 02:23 PM
Les in Chorlton 15 Feb 11 - 03:20 PM
Steve Gardham 15 Feb 11 - 06:49 PM
GUEST,AR 15 Feb 11 - 06:54 PM
GUEST,AR 15 Feb 11 - 07:01 PM
Steve Gardham 15 Feb 11 - 07:29 PM
GUEST 15 Feb 11 - 08:04 PM
GUEST 16 Feb 11 - 01:55 PM
Steve Gardham 16 Feb 11 - 04:02 PM
GUEST,AR 16 Feb 11 - 04:43 PM
GUEST 17 Feb 11 - 04:58 PM
GUEST,Ewan McVicar 06 Aug 11 - 03:06 AM
GUEST,Ewan McVicar 06 Aug 11 - 03:10 AM
dick greenhaus 06 Aug 11 - 07:50 PM
dick greenhaus 06 Aug 11 - 07:57 PM
GUEST,Ewan McVicar 07 Aug 11 - 06:54 AM
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Subject: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad- Annie Cosgrove
From: GUEST,AR
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 09:48 AM

Hello all, I am looking for information about the song 'The Collier Lad', sung by Annie Cosgrove, recorded by Alan Lomax in Newtongrange in 1953. The song as I hear it doesn't match any of the lyrics in the Digital Tradition Database.

Thanks!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad- Annie Cosgrove
From: Fred McCormick
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 12:09 PM

Roud has the Blantyre Explosion, collected by A.L. Lloyd from Mrs Cosgrove, but not by Lomax.

He also has the GRESFORD DISASTER Collected from Mrs Cosgrove by Alan Lomax and published on Caedmon TC 1144/Topic 12T 159 (`Jack of All Trades'). No date given

Finally, there is also We're aa jolly wee miner lads, collected from Mrs Cosgrove by Hamish Henderson in 1957. This is a version of Six Jolly Miners.

It doesn't sound to me as though it's any of those. If you can post some of the lyrics, that might help.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad- Annie Cosgrove
From: GUEST,AR
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 12:48 PM

'The Collier Lad' - Annie Cosgrove (62), Recorded by Alan Lomax, Newtongrange, 1953 (Annie Cosgrove learnt the song at the age of 17 in Blantyre from a fellow miner's wife called Mrs MacConville)

Approximate transcription:

I wish that weel (?) the collier lad a face I ne'er had seen
Nor so often in his company that I had had a' been
Of all the sweethearts that I had, he's the one that I love best
And the mair he was a wee collier lad my heart lies in his breast

It was on last Sunday morning my love was gone to Mass
He had no thoughts of listing til a soldier he did pass
He had no thoughts of listing nor to go and serve the king
It was company enticed my love to drink of the ale so brown
And the money that they gave my love was a shilling and a half a crown

When I go to Erder Shore (?) I'll buy to thee a glass
And when I go to Portsmouth I'll sail it with my love
And when I go to Maryhill some pretty fair maids I will see
They may tig and toy and sport and joy but I'll always think of thee


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad- Annie Cosgrove
From: Little Robyn
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 01:18 PM

Well verse 2 has a hint of The White Cockade.
But I don't recognise any of the other words.
Robyn


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad- Annie Cosgrove
From: Little Robyn
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 01:23 PM

However, I just Googled Annie and it offered me this:

Research Centre

Robyn


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad- Annie Cosgrove
From: GUEST,AR
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 01:39 PM

Thanks! The tune has an Irish feel to my ears...


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad- Annie Cosgrove
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 02:23 PM

Sorry to be negative but it looks like a selection of lines from several songs badly cobbled together, or at best garbled.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad- Annie Cosgrove
From: Les in Chorlton
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 03:20 PM

Isn't the general feeling that when Bert did things like:

a selection of lines from several songs badly cobbled together

He did it rather well?

L in C#


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad- Annie Cosgrove
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 06:49 PM

Exactly! So it's not Bert's cobbling then. Presumably this is what was sung. It looks more to me like the singer was trying to recall several songs and stringing it together rather haphazardly to please the collector.

On the other hand it doesn't appear in the expanded edition of 'Come all ye Bold Miners' or any others of Bert's. It wouldn't have been in the first edition because that was 1952. Of course it could always refer to a sea-going collier.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad- Annie Cosgrove
From: GUEST,AR
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 06:54 PM

Thanks for your help, people. Your input is much appreciated.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad- Annie Cosgrove
From: GUEST,AR
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 07:01 PM

ps- yes Steve, this is what was sung by Annie Cosgrove on the recording as transcribed by me. Some of the words are difficult to discern.
There's a brief interview of Annie by Alan Lomax on the tape during which she says she learned it at the age of 17, in Blantyre, from a Mrs McConville or MacConville. Annie was recorded singing the song at the age of 62, so I suppose it's very likely that she might have forgotten or garbled the lyrics of the song, which of course does seem like a stitching-together of various song fragments, in the intervening period.
Still, Annie's vocal performance of the song is very powerful, regardless of the 'problematic' text.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad- Annie Cosgrove
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 07:29 PM

Where can one listen to the recording, AR? It would be interesting to see if the tune was similar to any of the fragmented songs it contains.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad- Annie Cosgrove
From: GUEST
Date: 15 Feb 11 - 08:04 PM

Steve, please follow the link in Little Robyn's second reply above - there you can hear a sample of the original recording.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad- Annie Cosgrove
From: GUEST
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 01:55 PM

Thanks, Guest.
The style of the singer and the short sample make it difficult to identify the tune. The style of that short sample reminds me of some of the Scottish traveller singers. Travellers are noted for stringing together fragments of ballads to make effectively new songs. Plenty of examples of this in MacColl and Seeger.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad- Annie Cosgrove
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 04:02 PM

Sorry last post was me.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad- Annie Cosgrove
From: GUEST,AR
Date: 16 Feb 11 - 04:43 PM

Yep, the style is very Scottish Traveller-like, the open-throated conyach style... But I don't think Annie Cosgrove is a Traveller. Possibly the Mrs McConville from whom she learned the song was an Irish Traveller living and working in the Central Belt of Scotland, which wouldn't be at all surprising given the time period in question.
Of course there has always been a lot of cultural exhange between Ireland and Scotland, a lot of Irish song tunes, etc ending up in Scotland - eg Sheila Stewart's 'The Lakes of Shillin' - and the ABBA form of the rhyme scheme along with the Mixolydian tune screams 'Irish' to me... I wonder whether any Irish Mudcat users might have anything to contribute?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad- Annie Cosgrove
From: GUEST
Date: 17 Feb 11 - 04:58 PM

BUMP


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad (from Annie Cosgrove)
From: GUEST,Ewan McVicar
Date: 06 Aug 11 - 03:06 AM

An interview I did with Annie Cosgrove's son Robert has just uncovered that this is not Annie singing at all. On Peter Kennedy's Folktrax site he says he recorded the same song from a Jane Holland of Blantyre, but I suspect this is in fact the Lomax recording, copied and claimed by Kennedy. I am seeking help elsewhere about this. Maybe AR will contact me - my ewanandlinda email address is findable through Google and I am on Facebook.
Ewan


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad (from Annie Cosgrove)
From: GUEST,Ewan McVicar
Date: 06 Aug 11 - 03:10 AM

By the way, the tune seems a version of that used for Paddy's Green Shamrock Shore. Many of Blantyre's miners came of Irish stock - including my grandfather, who was born in Blantyre.
Ewan


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad (from Annie Cosgrove)
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 06 Aug 11 - 07:50 PM

See "Recruited Collier" in Digitrad


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad (from Annie Cosgrove)
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 06 Aug 11 - 07:57 PM

THe Kennedy recording is FolkTrax 511--Jane Howard sings it there. It does not sound as aif it' a re-editing of the LOmax recording. Very nice CD, BTW ("A-mining We Will Go)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Collier Lad (from Annie Cosgrove)
From: GUEST,Ewan McVicar
Date: 07 Aug 11 - 06:54 AM

Thanks, Dick. Apologies for maligning Kennedy on this occasion. So maybe Kennedy recorded Jane Holland in Blantyre, and gave Bob Holland's name to Alan Lomax, which led him to Annie Cosgrove. Or maybe Lomax found her through A L Lloyd, who collected from her for Come All Ye Bold Miners, how I do not know.


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