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Streets of Laredo

DigiTrad:
BARD OF ARMAGH
PILLS OF WHITE MERCURY
STREETS OF LAREDO (Cowboy's Lament)
THE DYING LUMBERMAN
THE LINEMAN'S HYMN
THE STREETS OF LOREDO
THE TROOPER CUT DOWN IN HIS PRIME
UNFORTUNATE LASS


Related threads:
Lyr Req: Trooper Cut Down in His Prime (Roy Palmer (47)
Lyr Req: Handful of Laurel (9)
Streets of Laredo - 'Live in the Nation'?? (57)
Streets of Stavanger aka The Seasick Norwegian (8)
Lyr Add: Pills of White Mercury (26)
Lyr Req: Streets of Toledo (Paul Clayton) (18)
(origins) Origins: Pills of White Mercury (36) (closed)
Chords Req: Pills of White Mercury (Old Blind Dogs (16)
(origins) ...all wrapped in white linen. (63) (closed)
BUCK'S ELEGY -- A corrupt text? (65) (closed)
Lyr Add: Tom Sherman's Barroom (4)
Lyr Req: Pills of White Mercury (5)
Lyr Req: The Pills of White Mercury (2)


Metchosin 02 Nov 99 - 04:06 AM
Llanfair 02 Nov 99 - 04:13 AM
Metchosin 02 Nov 99 - 04:37 AM
Brakn 02 Nov 99 - 06:16 AM
Jeri 02 Nov 99 - 09:09 AM
Susan of DT 02 Nov 99 - 09:59 AM
dick greenhaus 02 Nov 99 - 10:00 AM
Bruce O. 02 Nov 99 - 11:33 AM
Metchosin 02 Nov 99 - 11:37 AM
Metchosin 02 Nov 99 - 11:45 AM
Greg F. 02 Nov 99 - 06:11 PM
Metchosin 02 Nov 99 - 06:18 PM
Jeri 02 Nov 99 - 11:18 PM
Bruce O. 03 Nov 99 - 12:11 AM
Metchosin 03 Nov 99 - 12:20 AM
Neighmond 11 Dec 02 - 07:04 PM
Joe Offer 11 Dec 02 - 07:38 PM
Big Tim 12 Dec 02 - 06:09 AM
GUEST,The O'Meara 12 Dec 02 - 12:17 PM
Amos 12 Dec 02 - 12:48 PM
GUEST,Blackford John 12 Dec 02 - 01:02 PM
Susan of DT 13 Dec 02 - 04:35 AM
GUEST,Les in Chorlton, Manchester 14 Dec 02 - 03:13 AM
GUEST,ceejay 15 Dec 02 - 01:35 AM
The Pooka 15 Dec 02 - 07:59 PM
GUEST,Q 15 Dec 02 - 09:41 PM
Nerd 16 Dec 02 - 12:01 PM
masato sakurai 16 Dec 02 - 01:20 PM
brid widder 19 Jan 07 - 07:36 PM
GUEST 19 Jan 07 - 08:28 PM
Acme 20 Jan 07 - 12:25 AM
GUEST,G. O'Mear 20 Jan 07 - 06:28 AM
artbrooks 20 Jan 07 - 09:07 AM
An Buachaill Caol Dubh 20 Jan 07 - 11:12 AM
Jack Campin 20 Jan 07 - 01:55 PM
Jim Lad 20 Jan 07 - 02:02 PM
Scoville 20 Jan 07 - 05:18 PM
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Subject: Streets of Laredo
From: Metchosin
Date: 02 Nov 99 - 04:06 AM

Are there any Old Blind Dogs fans out there? The song Pills of White Mercury from their album Tall Tails appears that it might be the progenitor of the Streets of Laredo, Locke Hospital, The Young Sailor Cut Down in His Prime and The Halls of the High School all of which are on the DT. Is there any way of getting the Old Blind Dogs version on the digitrad? It sure is a fabulous version.


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Llanfair
Date: 02 Nov 99 - 04:13 AM

Don't forget "When I was on Horseback" I'm fascinated by this song, and how it has travelled the world , changing with the times. Any more versions?, and I'd love to see the words to "pills of white mercury" hwyl, Bron.


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Metchosin
Date: 02 Nov 99 - 04:37 AM

Fromw hat I've been told, the original tune is Irish and predates the Pills of White Mercury version, but I can't remember the name. Maybe somebody out there knows?


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Brakn
Date: 02 Nov 99 - 06:16 AM

It's similar to the Bard of Armagh.

Mick Bracken


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Jeri
Date: 02 Nov 99 - 09:09 AM

"The Unfortunate Rake" is believed to be the original. Oddly enough, there are a bunch of variants in DigiTrad, but TUR is not.

(click here to search for Unfortunate Rake).


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Susan of DT
Date: 02 Nov 99 - 09:59 AM

We numbered thi ssong family DT #350. If you search for #350, ou get 8 hits. Jeri's search yielded 5. Whenwe realize we have a family of songs, we give them a number and try to find all of the songs to number (an imperfect process).


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 02 Nov 99 - 10:00 AM

A bunch of versions of Unfortunate Rake/Streets of Laredo/St. James Infirmary will be in the soon-to-be-released Fall 1999 version of DigiYrad.


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Bruce O.
Date: 02 Nov 99 - 11:33 AM

There is no known early copy of "The Unfortuate Rake". The tune is known from a collection of Irish tunes published by Smollet Holden, c 1805, and it's in 'Crosby's Irish Musical Repository' 1808 (copy on my website).

The earliest copy of the song now known is "The Buck's Elegy", c 1800, and the pills are in it in the line "I'd took pila cotia, all sorts of white mercury."


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Metchosin
Date: 02 Nov 99 - 11:37 AM

I think the Bard of Armagh was the one I was trying to remember. I am not familiar with St. James Infirmary as the same tune as Pills of White Mercury, the version of St. James Infirmary that I know, is a more blusey piece. The group Old Blind Dogs does a version of the Barnyards of Delgaty which also isn't listed on the DT, only refered to in the Song on Courtship. They also do a fiddle piece called Two Pretty Maids that is absolute "chicken skin" music and a number of other songs, the lyrics of which I don't think are listed.


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Metchosin
Date: 02 Nov 99 - 11:45 AM

It would be interesting to know when white mercury was intially used as a cure for syphilus, as this would also date the song.


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Greg F.
Date: 02 Nov 99 - 06:11 PM

Mercury is cited as a treatment for syphilis in Ephraim Chambers'_Cyclopaedia: Or, An Universal Dictionary of the Arts and Sciences..._ London, 1752(under "Venereal Disease")- and, I believe also in the earlier, 1728 edition as well, but I don't have that edition available- if that's any help. May just make things worse....


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Metchosin
Date: 02 Nov 99 - 06:18 PM

I'm goin going to try to send the lyrics Pills of White Mercury, should I paste them here or start a new thread?


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Jeri
Date: 02 Nov 99 - 11:18 PM

Metchosin, is the version you have different than this "Pills of White Mercury," which I found per Susan of DT's tip by searching for #350? (This one really does have all the versions.)

I was mistaken when I said it wasn't in there.


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Bruce O.
Date: 03 Nov 99 - 12:11 AM

OED (under 'mercurial') gives a quote from a work of 1716 on the use of 'mercurials' to treat the Great Pox (syphilis).


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Metchosin
Date: 03 Nov 99 - 12:20 AM

Yup, thats it, I posted the same song in the forum from transcribing it from a recording before your notification came up. Looks like the submitter on the DT. had trouble with the word phlegm also.


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Subject: Streets of Laredo
From: Neighmond
Date: 11 Dec 02 - 07:04 PM

The song "Streets of Leredo" has a "sister song" that i have on a record My neighbor sang about 1954 or thereabouts-
As I was roamin the roads and slagyards among the pith heaps of as evening grew nigh...." and on like that. It is vaguely scottish sounding and has many many verses. As I recall the name of the mine is "High Blantyre"


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Joe Offer
Date: 11 Dec 02 - 07:38 PM

Hi, Neighmond - here's the Blantyre Explosion (click) in the Digital Tradition. I wasn't familiar with it, but it sure does follow the structure of "Streets of Laredo."
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Big Tim
Date: 12 Dec 02 - 06:09 AM

Streets of Laredo/St James Infirmary tune, I had always taken for granted were taken from the Bard of Armagh. Can anyone date the B of A? This is a more interesting song than it first appears because the "Bard" is supposedly Doctor Patrick Donnelly, Catholic Bishop of Dromore, who was deposed under the Penal Laws around 1706. He was imprisoned, escaped and became an outlaw, adopting the guise of a wandering harper, living in a hut on the slopes of Slieve Gullian mountain in South Armagh. A townland there is still called "the doctor's quarters". (Sorry for digression).


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: GUEST,The O'Meara
Date: 12 Dec 02 - 12:17 PM

The Colorado Irish Pipe Band plays a tune called "Bold Phelim Brady, The Bard of Armagh" and I've heard the song sung that way. Don't know how Patrick Donnely fits in here.


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Amos
Date: 12 Dec 02 - 12:48 PM

This song is NOT on the Mudcat CDs. About 100 others are, though.


A


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: GUEST,Blackford John
Date: 12 Dec 02 - 01:02 PM

As the saying goes:-


"One night with Venus and a lifetime with Mercury"


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Susan of DT
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 04:35 AM

I just ran a search for #350 and got 26 hits - a few false positives since the search seems to ignore the # sign - but most are variants of this song.


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: GUEST,Les in Chorlton, Manchester
Date: 14 Dec 02 - 03:13 AM

Speaking of other versions, Lanfair, I worked with a climber in the 60's who gave the words:

As I was a climbimg on the the grey slopes of Cloggy
As I was a climbimg on Cloggy one day
I met a young climber clothed all in white linen
Clothed all in white linen and colder than clay

etc

I gues Cloggy is Clogwyn something in Snowdonia


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: GUEST,ceejay
Date: 15 Dec 02 - 01:35 AM

I have a CD of John Beg O'Flaherty, a Galway singer not heard much at the moment, and on it he is doing a song called 'Bold Robert Emmett'to the same air.


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: The Pooka
Date: 15 Dec 02 - 07:59 PM

Then there was Allan Sherman's version -

As I wandered out on the streets of Miami
I said to mineself, "This is one fancy town",
I called up mine partner and said "Hullo Sammy,
Go pack up your satchel and mosey on down."

etc.


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 15 Dec 02 - 09:41 PM

The Lineman's Hymn is sung with various verses, some rough, by linemen in the west. here is a "straight" version: Lineman's Hymn
The mistake is made of overestimating tha age of the original (?) song by about 200 years.


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Nerd
Date: 16 Dec 02 - 12:01 PM

Kenny Goldstein once produced an entire LP just of versions of this ballad; Blantyre and Armagh aren't on it, but it does have versions set on American college campuses, lumber camps, the West Indies, etc. The people singing are a combination of professional folksingers (Rosalie Sorrels, Pete Seeger, and i can't remember who else) and academic folklorists who sing (Roger Abrahams, Jan Brunvand, Barre Toelken...and believe it or not Goldstein himself). It's available as a custom CD from Smithsonian Folkways, with extensive notes.


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: masato sakurai
Date: 16 Dec 02 - 01:20 PM

I heard Kenny sing live during his folksong lecture (his tape recorder was in bad condition at that time).
~Masato


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: brid widder
Date: 19 Jan 07 - 07:36 PM

I was listening to Jonnie Cash sining this tonight & was reminded of a parody... I can't for the life of me remember anything much about it except it made me laugh... does anyone have the words to the parody... or know if it is recorded & if so by whom


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: GUEST
Date: 19 Jan 07 - 08:28 PM

You sure it was Cash?    I once heard a song, too, but can't tell you was it fast or slow. I sure liked it for a minute. I think.


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Acme
Date: 20 Jan 07 - 12:25 AM

I see by your outfit that you are a cowboy
You see by my outfit that I'm a cowboy, too
We see by our outfits that we are both cowboys
If you get an outfit you can be a cowboy, too."


Smothers Brothers. :)


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: GUEST,G. O'Mear
Date: 20 Jan 07 - 06:28 AM

There's also an Irish song called 'Bold Robert Emmet,' sung most recently by John Beg O'Flaherty to this tune. I wonder which set of lyrics came first?


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: artbrooks
Date: 20 Jan 07 - 09:07 AM

I don't think The Streets of Stavenger are in there anywhere.


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: An Buachaill Caol Dubh
Date: 20 Jan 07 - 11:12 AM

Further to Big Tim's digression, the earliest version of "The Bard of Armagh" I've found is from the mid, or late, nineteenth century, and is the work of one A. Ritchie. The words bear a fairly close relationship to the three-verse set collected and arranged by Herbert Hughes and published in "Irish Country Songs" 1n 1909, but are inferior in poetic merit. The air of "Bold Robert Emmet", as given in Colm O'Lochlainn's "Irish Street Ballads", isn't the same as either "The Bard of A" or "Streets of L", tho' there are similarities


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Jack Campin
Date: 20 Jan 07 - 01:55 PM

The tune was first known as "The Banks of the Devon", after the words Burns wrote for it. He sasy he collected the tune near Inverness, from a woman singing a Gaelic song, "The Brown Dairymaid". That's a Jacobite song about the '45 written by Alasdair MacMaighstir Alasdair, not long after the event. So the tune must have been in circulation in Scotland in the middle of the 18th century, 50 years before there's any trace of it in Ireland. There's nothing very Scottish Highland about it, it's much like several broadside tunes of mixed Anglo-Scottish parentage you find in D'Urfey and Playford's publications of the late 17th century.

There are *many* Scottish and English broadsides of the early 19th century that call for "The Banks of the Devon" as their required tune, i.e. they got it directly or indirectly from Johnson's "Scots Musical Museum". The Irish balladeers would have got it from the same sources.

Mercury treatment for syphilis goes back to the first ten years of the epidemic, it was standard treatment by 1510. There's lots of 18th century doggerel about it.


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Jim Lad
Date: 20 Jan 07 - 02:02 PM

Lest we forget Eric Bogle's "No Man's Land"


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Subject: RE: Streets of Laredo
From: Scoville
Date: 20 Jan 07 - 05:18 PM

As they used to say during the . . . one of the world wars: "One night with Venus means a lifetime with Mercury."


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