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A folk song a year

Will Fly 27 Jan 12 - 08:57 AM
GUEST,Suibhne Astray 27 Jan 12 - 09:14 AM
Will Fly 27 Jan 12 - 09:18 AM
GUEST,matt milton 27 Jan 12 - 09:25 AM
GUEST,Suibhne Astray 27 Jan 12 - 10:08 AM
Mr Happy 27 Jan 12 - 10:21 AM
Bert 27 Jan 12 - 11:13 AM
Will Fly 27 Jan 12 - 11:15 AM
TheSnail 27 Jan 12 - 11:32 AM
Gibb Sahib 27 Jan 12 - 11:34 AM
Bert 27 Jan 12 - 11:43 AM
Mr Happy 27 Jan 12 - 12:02 PM
Tootler 27 Jan 12 - 12:21 PM
Phil Edwards 27 Jan 12 - 01:29 PM
Will Fly 27 Jan 12 - 02:02 PM
GUEST,Ex Singer 27 Jan 12 - 04:31 PM
theleveller 27 Jan 12 - 04:44 PM
Phil Edwards 27 Jan 12 - 06:19 PM
Gibb Sahib 27 Jan 12 - 06:40 PM
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Subject: A folk song a year
From: Will Fly
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 08:57 AM

Given the current trend, started it seems by one J. Boden, of recording a folk song at regular intervals, I'm thinking of doing the same.

Problem is, I'm not a singer of folk songs as such - so I think one a year is probably about it for me.

Any suggestions for 2012? I don't want one that's too difficult...


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Subject: RE: A folk song a year
From: GUEST,Suibhne Astray
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 09:14 AM

I usually have a Big One cooking up that could take several years before its ready for public performance, let alone recording. I've had Paddy Tunney's An Bunnan Bui simmering away for 20 years or more, but I've tried it in sessions maybe twice and it's still not quite ready, even though I'll sing it myself when I'm out walking in lonely places. I made a recording a few years back using the zither (citera) but it feels better with the fiddle. Also part of my own Fiddlesangs project I'm slowly re-learning The Keilder Hunt, but I reckon it won't be ready until the back end of August at the earliest. I say re-learning, but it never became part of my when I was living in Tyneside as it's doing now I'm living in Exile (as we ex-pat Geordies affectionately refer to Lancashire).


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Subject: RE: A folk song a year
From: Will Fly
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 09:18 AM

Ah, but Suibhne, you're an accomplished singer and performer of these things - I have your excellent CD, don't forget - and no doubt have a store of diamonds hidden away to lay before us in years to come.

I'm just an old rock'n roller who's lost his ducktail.


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Subject: RE: A folk song a year
From: GUEST,matt milton
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 09:25 AM

The thought once occurred to me to do an "A Folk Song An Hour" project. 24 hours, 24 folk songs, one caffeine-fuelled killer of a day.

Or perhaps, inspired by Napalm Death, to try "A Folk Song A Minute" - seeing just how fast you can sing those long tragic ballads...


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Subject: RE: A folk song a year
From: GUEST,Suibhne Astray
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 10:08 AM

I love the idea of miniatures. I remember Fred Frith once doing The Complete Works of Henry Cow in 60 Seconds, and I was honoured to be featured on both volumes of Martin Archer's Network CDs in the 90s, though there the remit was 90 seconds. I often might focus on the Consummate Essence of a Ballad - reducing (say) Earl Brand to its most significant 30-seconds by way of removing the episode from the narrative arc, much as the Surrealists did when they'd go into cinemas for a couple of minutes in the middle of a film and leave before they puicked up on the general plot. I can generally dip into The Archers like this & enjoy about 1 minute a month without having a clue what's going on. It's best that way. Same might be said of Ballads actually.

Scene trom The Cruel Mother - a Homage to Edward Gorey


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Subject: RE: A folk song a year
From: Mr Happy
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 10:21 AM

........one small prob: no one knows what a folk song is!




[Just grabbing me mac!]


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Subject: RE: A folk song a year
From: Bert
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 11:13 AM

...an old rock'n roller who's lost his ducktail...

Maybe some Lonnie Donnegan stuff.


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Subject: RE: A folk song a year
From: Will Fly
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 11:15 AM

Nah - it's got to be trad stuff from England... something I can get my beard into.


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Subject: RE: A folk song a year
From: TheSnail
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 11:32 AM

Chevy Chase?


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Subject: RE: A folk song a year
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 11:34 AM

Ha, good one, Will Fly. J Boden certainly wasn't original with the idea, but does seem to have had the visibility to start a trend. To the credit of most people following, there has been something more to their projects than the "at regular intervals" aspect. Because one of several criticisms I have of Boden's project is the emphasis on "each day." Otherwise, it is just "folk songs" which are all rather common and not particularly interesting IMO. And I'm afraid the requisite of having one per day (why do I get the feeling that 7 were spun off on Sundays and then posted up by a designated blogger through the week?) puts such a pressure on that, to keep up, one must turn to the old familiar stand-bys, their accessible forms (recording disseminated versions), without time for exploring any new interpretations or doing proper research on the songs. So the end result seems rather pointless except to say, "Look, I did one per day." 365 INTERESTING songs over any span of time would be a better and lasting body of work...especially if focused on a more specific theme than generic Anglo Folk Song.


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Subject: RE: A folk song a year
From: Bert
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 11:43 AM

Here is a folk song


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Subject: RE: A folk song a year
From: Mr Happy
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 12:02 PM

Bert,

So that's the suggestion for the month? [busy writing words] Ta!


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Subject: RE: A folk song a year
From: Tootler
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 12:21 PM

I didn't want to tie myself to a regular schedule so I called mine "Occasional Folk Songs". I am interpreting the word "folk" fairly loosely and am including tunes.

As you are mainly a tune man, Will, then include tunes as well.


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Subject: RE: A folk song a year
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 01:29 PM

it is just "folk songs" which are all rather common and not particularly interesting

????? I'm thankful that that hasn't been my experience. I've been listening to this stuff seriously for about five years now, and I'm still learning new old songs.

I'm afraid the requisite of having one per day (why do I get the feeling that 7 were spun off on Sundays and then posted up by a designated blogger through the week?) puts such a pressure on that, to keep up, one must turn to the old familiar stand-bys

I don't think that was Jon Boden's experience either.

At 52 Folk Songs I set myself to do one a week, which turned more or less immediately into one a week plus one or two other songs which might or might not be folk songs (as far as I'm concerned). It's not always been easy to keep up, particularly since I started to get into multi-tracking, but I've never yet been short of material.

A Folk Song a Minute

Stanley Accrington does Musgrave in one verse, which is quite impressive. I took the opposite approach with Sir Patrick Spens.

Will - if it's going to be one song, make it a good one. Sir P. S. himself, maybe, or Musgrave or Bateman or... Tell you what, we'll give you till Halloween to work up Tam Lin. How about it?


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Subject: RE: A folk song a year
From: Will Fly
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 02:02 PM

OK Pip - you're on. I started the thread, I confess, in jest. But the thought occurs to me - well, why the hell not? I play lots and lots of tunes and to pick one wouldn't be much of a challenge (apologies to Tootler). I think I've probably sung four traditional songs in all over the past 40 years:

The Rout Of The Blues
The Waters of Tyne
High Germany
In Good King Arthur's Day

All from my youth...

So I'll accept Pip's challenge and sing one song (none of the above, by the way) (a) unaccompanied (b) by Hallowe'een (c) with video...

May the Lord have mercy on my soul.


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Subject: RE: A folk song a year
From: GUEST,Ex Singer
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 04:31 PM

I must agree with Gibb Sahib's sentiments. The whole 'folk song a day' seemed a pointless exercise beyond a well engineered publicity stunt which S&B and of course the whole Bellowhead 'machinery' are very good at. Many of the songs were as you said ... all rather common and not particularly interesting ... but it's possible that the 'yoof of today' are discovering material for the first time, as we all did when we started out? The same can be siad for the B'head repertoire too ... just over arranged noise for people to bop too. It's a pity because there are some very good musicians amongst them ... Paul Sartin, Benji and of course Mr Flood, but for me the song is lost and has become just a vehicle to show off.


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Subject: RE: A folk song a year
From: theleveller
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 04:44 PM

"At 52 Folk Songs I set myself to do one a week,"

Why?


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Subject: RE: A folk song a year
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 06:19 PM

leveller - because I wanted to get some recording done throughout the year, and I knew that if I didn't set myself a regular target I'd let it slip. Also, one a day was way beyond me, and I wanted to do more than one a month. Seemed like a reasonable option really.

Beats me why anyone would want to spend their time moaning about AFSAD. I'm not the greatest Bodenista and I had a good moan about some of the song choices, but (a) 99% of it sounded nothing at all like B'head and (b) some of the songs were anything but common.

Will - good man! And unaccompanied, yet. I'll look forward to it.


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Subject: RE: A folk song a year
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 06:40 PM

Pip , if I may pay you a compliment (however tainted it may be by our disagreement of opinion over AFSAD), your project has more substance because you seem to be exploring the songs more...sort of enriching yourself and your repertoire, reflecting, etc. You *could* do one a day if you spent less time on each and just whipped them off as your interpretations of what you've heard on revival records. The week gives you more time to digest the song.

I realize that my criticism of AFSAD may be belied by numerous examples in the project, so I apologize for what may seem like a blanket statement. It is more my general impression.

I also dislike that the songs now seem to be restricted access / you have to buy them (is this true?). Why not just let the blog sit as an archive if it is really of value. It seems to masquerade as a blog --which is usually a grass-roots kinda thing, of the people for the people (perhaps that assumption about blogs is just mine). But then it has an impersonal feel (what's up with the third person writing?) and also a commercial (or at least promotional) feel. No, I don't think commercialism "taints" music necessarily, I just find it awkward in this context. Maybe some of these questions are answered; I'm sorry I don't know more about them, but I'd be pleased to be enlightened on them.


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