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Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away

Liz the Squeak 26 Nov 99 - 11:26 PM
Jeri 26 Nov 99 - 11:30 PM
emily rain 26 Nov 99 - 11:41 PM
Liz the Squeak 26 Nov 99 - 11:45 PM
sophocleese 27 Nov 99 - 01:10 AM
sophocleese 27 Nov 99 - 01:25 AM
Margo 27 Nov 99 - 08:15 AM
Jeri 27 Nov 99 - 09:51 AM
Liz the Squeak 27 Nov 99 - 03:54 PM
Liz the Squeak 27 Nov 99 - 03:55 PM
sophocleese 27 Nov 99 - 04:25 PM
lamarca 28 Nov 99 - 07:41 PM
Margo 28 Nov 99 - 10:49 PM
Susan A-R 28 Nov 99 - 11:16 PM
Malcolm.Smith@durham.ac.uk 29 Nov 99 - 06:42 AM
Liz the Squeak 06 Dec 02 - 02:51 AM
Barbara 06 Dec 02 - 03:57 AM
Dave Bryant 06 Dec 02 - 05:52 AM
Liz the Squeak 06 Dec 02 - 06:24 PM
delphinium 07 Dec 02 - 11:41 AM
delphinium 07 Dec 02 - 12:08 PM
lamarca 08 Dec 02 - 12:14 AM
denise:^) 08 Dec 02 - 01:48 AM
Liz the Squeak 08 Dec 02 - 03:04 PM
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Subject: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 26 Nov 99 - 11:26 PM

Can anyone help with lyrics to a song about a holiday? The chorus goes something like .................. spindle, bobbin and spool away, .................... For this is my holiday.

It was a girl, singing whilst she spun, about her holiday coming up.

I remember Isla St Clair singing it on BBC TV way back in the 1970's on her programme 'The song and the story', an excellent series where she went about singing folk songs and explaining them, usually in costume. Someone used to sing it at my folk club, back in the 1980's, but I never noted it down, thinking I had it in one of my books. Well, I don't, any helpers please??

LTS


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: Jeri
Date: 26 Nov 99 - 11:30 PM

I think Silly Sisters (Maddy Prior & June Tabor) recorded it. I have a tape, I'm just not sure where it is.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: emily rain
Date: 26 Nov 99 - 11:41 PM

hmm, it's not on their self-titled or no more to the dance albums, and i'm not aware of any others. damn. there's a local group that sings this song, and it is indeed beautiful. i wish i could be of more help.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 26 Nov 99 - 11:45 PM

Oh bums. I'd thought of Silly Sisters too, but you beat me to it. Wouldn't surprise me if I do have it somewhere like that, I've forgotten more than half of my record collection and never learnt any of the SO's, which outnumbered mine 6-1. The only records we had in common were the Kipper Family and the Goons 'Ying Tong Song'.....

Ho hum, back to the forum again, but thanks for looking so promptly!

LTS


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: sophocleese
Date: 27 Nov 99 - 01:10 AM

It is Maddy Prior that I've heard do this. Give me a couple of minutes and I'll try and figure out which album.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: sophocleese
Date: 27 Nov 99 - 01:25 AM

Okay I just checked the Net. The song is on the album Summer Solstice, Maddy Prior and Tim Hart. Its called Serving Girl's Holiday, but it doesn't list the lyrics. I'll dig my tape out tomorrrow if nobody's got them down first and punch them in.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: Margo
Date: 27 Nov 99 - 08:15 AM

I have some friends that sing this song. I'll send Jonathan a message and get him to respond. I don't know the words myself.... Margo


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: Jeri
Date: 27 Nov 99 - 09:51 AM

An attempt at the lyrics has been made here. The song is at the bottom of the page. (Well, it's a start.)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 27 Nov 99 - 03:54 PM

Yes that is the one, you remembered more than me. The line is 'For tis now a holiday'

The one that starts

It's 50 long springtimes, - the tag line is 'The ladies go dancing at Whitsun. The title may possibly be 'Dancing at Whitsun', that is certainly what I know it as, but cannot for the life of me find where it is, swiss cheese brain and an ever expanding record collection....

Thanks again,

LTS


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 27 Nov 99 - 03:55 PM

It is, 'Dancing at Whitsun, in the digitrad as that, as below.

DANCING AT WHITSUN (words by John Austin Marshall)

It's fifty long springtimes since she was a bride, But still you may see her at each Whitsuntide In a dress of white linen with ribbons of green, As green as her memories of loving.

The feet that were nimble tread carefully now, As gentle a measure as age will allow, Through groves of white blossoms, by fields of young corn, Where once she was pledged to her true-love.

The fields they stand empty, the hedges grow (go) free-- No young men to turn them or pastures go see (seed) They are gone where the forest of oak trees before Have gone, to be wasted in battle.

Down from the green farmlands and from their loved ones Marched husbands and brothers and fathers and sons. There's a fine roll of honor where the Maypole once stood, And the ladies go dancing at Whitsun.

There's a straight row of houses in these latter days All covering the downs where the sheep used to graze. There's a field of red poppies (a gift from the Queen) But the ladies remember at Whitsun, And the ladies go dancing at Whitsun.

on Bok, Trickett, Muir record. FSI- . Also Redpath Philo and Tim Hart and Maddy Prior on Summer Solstice

Copyright John Austin Marshall @war @dance filename[ DNCWHIT Tune file : FLSEBRD2

LTS


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: sophocleese
Date: 27 Nov 99 - 04:25 PM

If you're interested in the lyrics to Maddy Prior songs you can try this site:

http://www.soldigit.net/gaudela/prior/frames.html


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: lamarca
Date: 28 Nov 99 - 07:41 PM

Liz, BruceO gave me a ton of info on the origins of the song two years ago when I was learning it from Maddy Prior's album - here's the thread:

http://www.mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=2647&messages=8

Maddy (or Isla St. Clair)left out the really fun part of the holiday (I especially like 'by godus deth, thou dest me wow!)...


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: Margo
Date: 28 Nov 99 - 10:49 PM

The song my friend sings is "Serving Maid's Holiday". He didn't have the lyrics, rather the gal he sings with occasionally. I'm curious, since no one has referred to the song by this title, I wonder if the lyrics my friend has are different.... I'll ask. Margo


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: Susan A-R
Date: 28 Nov 99 - 11:16 PM

Thanks for the Maddy Site. I'll enjoy that one a lot.

Susan A-R


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: Malcolm.Smith@durham.ac.uk
Date: 29 Nov 99 - 06:42 AM

Dancing at Whitsun is also on "Anthems in Eden" by Shirley Collins.

Malcolm.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 06 Dec 02 - 02:51 AM

Strange how this spinning song hasn't made it into the DT yet...... still no luck there when I wanted to refresh my memory.... mainly because I'd forgotten to note down the words first time round!!

LTS


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: Barbara
Date: 06 Dec 02 - 03:57 AM

Did you want the words, still, Liz? Or are they on Maddie's site, and I just haven't checked the links? I could probably transcribe them if desired.
Blessings,
Barbara


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: Dave Bryant
Date: 06 Dec 02 - 05:52 AM

I seem to remember Shirley Collins singing this one, and yes I know it as "Serving Maid's Holiday".


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 06 Dec 02 - 06:24 PM

I'd still like the words please... all those I've managed to find have been illegible, incomprehensible, inaudible or incomplete.

Thanks.

LTS


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Subject: Lyr Add: SERVANT GIRL'S HOLIDAY / SERVING GIRL...
From: delphinium
Date: 07 Dec 02 - 11:41 AM

According to my ears, the words as Maddy Prior sings them are pretty much as transcribed by Lamarca on the previous thread mentioned above.

It looks as if these may be selected verses from a longer poem I found at this web site, which according to the heading, is from "Medieval English Verse", page 224. I wonder if this refers to the Penguin paperback of this title with translations of the old English by Brian Stone. Here are the words (includes some of the "interesting bits" left out by Maddy):

I've waited longing for today:
Spindle, bobbin, and spool, away!
In joy and bliss I'm off to play
Upon this high holiday.

Spindle, bobbin, and spool, away,
For joy that it's a holiday!

The dirt upon the floor's unswept,
The fireplace isn't cleaned and kept,
I haven't cut the rushes yet
Upon this high holiday.

Spindle, bobbin, etc.

The cooking herbs I must fetch in,
And fix my kerchief under my chin.
Darling Jack, lend me a pin
To fix me well this holiday!

Spindle, bobbin, etc.

Now midday has almost come,
And all my chores are still not done
I'll clean my shoes till they become
Bright for a high holiday.

Spindle, bobbin, etc.

In pails the milk has got to go;
I ought to spread this bowl of dough -
It clogs my nails and fingers so
As I knead this holiday!

Spindle, bobbin, etc.

Jack will take me on my way,
And with me he will want to play:
I needn't fear my lady's nay
On such a high holiday!

Spindle, bobbin, etc.

And when we stop beside the track
At the inn this Sunday, Jack
Will wet my whistle and pay my whack
As on every holiday.

Spindle, bobbin, etc.

Then he'll take me by the hand
And lay me down upon the land
And make my buttocks feel like sand
Upon this high holiday.

Spindle, bobbin, etc.

In he'll push and out he'll go,
With me beneath him lying low:
'By God's death, you do me woe
Upon this high holiday.'

Spindle, bobbin, etc.

Soon my belly began to swell
As round and great as any bell;
And to my dame I dared not tell
What happened to me that holiday.

Spindle, bobbin, and spool, away,
For joy that it's a holiday!
^^


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: delphinium
Date: 07 Dec 02 - 12:08 PM

I should have said the title of that poem is given as The Servant Girl's Holiday. The title used by Maddy Prior & Tim Hart on Summer Solstice (and also by Priscilla Herdman, Anne Hills & Cindy Mangsen on Voices of Winter) is Serving Girl's Holiday.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: lamarca
Date: 08 Dec 02 - 12:14 AM

I think I remember hearing that Maddy Prior took the poem mentioned by Bruce O and delphinium and set it to the tune of the Christmas carol, "The Friendly Beasts". Bruce's words on the thread mentioned above are in the original Old English, with thorns and youghts and other unpronouncable and unwritable letters, and Delphinium's lyrics are a really good translation to modern English. My husband and I perform this in some of our "Work Song" sets...


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: denise:^)
Date: 08 Dec 02 - 01:48 AM

I heard it on the Herdman/Hills/Mangsen CD Voices of Winter .


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Spindle, bobbin and spool away
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 08 Dec 02 - 03:04 PM

Thanks all.

Much appreciated.

LTS


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