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Lyr Req: The Irish Hop Pole Puller

GUEST,Infrequent but always polite guest 18 Jul 15 - 07:24 PM
Joe Offer 18 Jul 15 - 11:18 PM
Jim Carroll 19 Jul 15 - 03:27 AM
GUEST,Infrequent but always polite guest 19 Jul 15 - 04:29 AM
doc.tom 19 Jul 15 - 05:15 AM
GUEST,Infrequent but always polite guest 19 Jul 15 - 06:40 AM
GUEST,Infrequent but always polite guest 19 Jul 15 - 11:03 AM
GUEST,Martin Ryan 19 Jul 15 - 11:52 AM
Joe Offer 19 Jul 15 - 03:52 PM
GUEST 20 Jul 15 - 06:38 AM
GUEST,Infrequent but always polite guest 20 Jul 15 - 07:00 AM
Vic Smith 20 Jul 15 - 08:42 AM
GUEST,Infrequent but always polite guest 21 Jul 15 - 06:13 AM
Long Firm Freddie 21 Jul 15 - 11:49 AM
Vic Smith 21 Jul 15 - 01:04 PM
GUEST,Infrequent but always polite guest 05 Aug 15 - 11:09 AM
GUEST,Molly-not-dancing 26 Sep 15 - 09:02 PM
GUEST,Mike Yates 24 Oct 15 - 05:42 AM
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Subject: Lyr Req: The Irish Hop Pole Puller
From: GUEST,Infrequent but always polite guest
Date: 18 Jul 15 - 07:24 PM

Hi all, does anyone have the lyrics to The Irish Hop Pole Puller please? It's Roud #1709.

First line: I'm Coster Joe from down our street

Chorus: She was a modern laundry girl was blue-eyed Mary Fuller, until she went and eloped from Kent with an Irish hop pole puller.

Vaughan Williams Memorial Library entry:

http://www.vwml.org/record/RoudFS/S363785

British Library sound archive (Pop Maynard singing and, alas, coughing):

http://sounds.bl.uk/World-and-traditional-music/Reg-Hall-Archive/025M-C0903X0486XX-0600V0

Thank you for your time.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Irish Hop Pole Puller
From: Joe Offer
Date: 18 Jul 15 - 11:18 PM

Sounds intriguing, but I'm having trouble making out the lyrics, too. Do you have any more you can post, so we can work together on the part you haven't figured out?

I found a recording from a group named "Okee Dokee" here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2FCY6I0_pik

There's a very nice recording here: https://afolksongaweek.wordpress.com/2012/09/


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Irish Hop Pole Puller
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 19 Jul 15 - 03:27 AM

Fairly obviously a Victorian music hall song.
It was recorded by Mike Yates from Sussex singer, George Spicer and issued on the Topic l.p., Blackberry Fold
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Irish Hop Pole Puller
From: GUEST,Infrequent but always polite guest
Date: 19 Jul 15 - 04:29 AM

Yes, Jim, definitely a comic music hall song, and I'd guess late Victorian or even afterwards from the language and socio-economic details.

Thank you for the links, Joe! I hadn't come up with that Okee Dokee video at all. I'll get comparing and transcribing, and post a full set of lyrics here when I'm done.

If anyone else has any more information then I'd still be grateful for it. Thank you all for your time.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Irish Hop Pole Puller
From: doc.tom
Date: 19 Jul 15 - 05:15 AM

Tim Hart used to sing it before Tim & Maddy became Steeleye Span. I believe he had it from the George Spicer recording but didn't record it himself. Sorry - that's really not very helpful is it.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Irish Hop Pole Puller
From: GUEST,Infrequent but always polite guest
Date: 19 Jul 15 - 06:40 AM

It might not be "helpful" doc.tom but it's certainly interesting. I like knowing who's been singing a song (and which audiences appreciated it). Thank you.


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE IRISH HOP-POLE PULLER
From: GUEST,Infrequent but always polite guest
Date: 19 Jul 15 - 11:03 AM

I've added my own notes at the end but corrections and alternative suggestions are welcome.

The Irish Hop Pole Puller (Roud #1709, collected from George "Pop" Maynard and George Spicer)

I'm Coster Joe from down our street,
Me heart is nearly broke.
I've lost me blooming dona,
Me coster cart and moke.
I'll tell you how it all occurred
From the time we took the road
'Til we came to those lovely fields in Kent.

She was a modern laundry girl,
Was blue-eyed Mary Fuller,
'Til she went and sloped from Kent
With an Irish hop pole puller.

We started from the Rose and Crown
With mirth, and pleasure bent.
We caused a big sensation
In every place we went.
For Mary Ann was well made-up
With a red plaid shawl and hat,
And a lovely ostrich feather
Was bought by me, the flat.

She was a modern laundry girl,
Was blue-eyed Mary Fuller,
'Til she went and sloped from Kent
With an Irish hop pole puller.

We drove as far as Crockham Hill
And then to Hunton Bull.
Mary Ann expressed her wish
To watch them pick and pull.
I loved her so, I couldn't say no,
We went down to the fields
When suddenly the cart collapsed
And off come both the wheels.

She was a modern laundry girl,
Was blue-eyed Mary Fuller,
'Til she went and sloped from Kent
With an Irish hop pole puller.

My Mary screamed, some fellows came.
I could have done without them,
Especially two young Irish chaps
With willing ways about them.
One said his name was Tim,
The other Mike O'Brien.
Who I could see, with half an eye,
My Mary fixed her eye on.

She was a modern laundry girl,
Was blue-eyed Mary Fuller,
'Til she went and sloped from Kent
With an Irish hop pole puller.

Now I fell in a jealous rage
And had a row with Tim.
Mike O'Brien he picked it up
And knocked me in the bin.
Then some policemen came along
And run me into jail.
It's a wonder now that I'm alive
To tell to you the tale.

She was a modern laundry girl,
Was blue-eyed Mary Fuller,
'Til she went and sloped from Kent
With an Irish hop pole puller.

When I got out from doing time,
I found myself forsook.
Mary-ann and Mike O'Brien
Had slung their blooming hook.
So when you take your dona out,
Just keep away from Kent,
Or you'll come back broke and lose your moke
And wish you hadn't went.

She was a modern laundry girl,
Was blue-eyed Mary Fuller,
'Til she went and sloped from Kent
With an Irish hop pole puller.

Notes

Date: probably after 1880 because of the language.

All the versions I've heard seem to be "modern laundry girl" but I wonder if that's a folk processing of "Magdalen laundry girl" as there was, for example, a "Magdalen" institution in Whitechapel from 1758 to 1966, i.e. the Magdalen Hospital for the Reception of Penitent Prostitutes. Just an idle speculation on my part.

Gloss

coster (costermonger): street trader
blooming: a mild intensifier and euphemism for "bloody" (music hall slang, from 1879)
dona: woman, especially a girlfriend, from the Portugese/Spanish "donna" (Polari, from 1859)
moke: donkey or inferior horse (slang, from 1855)

'til she sloped: presumably either " 'til off she sloped" from the slang "sloped off" or " 'til she's eloped" after folk processing
Irish: in the hop-picking context "Irish" is as likely to mean Irish Traveller as a man of Irish ethnicity

Rose and Crown: pub, obviously
Crockham Hill to Hunton: 25miles/40km or so
Hunton Bull: The Bull is a pub
pleasure-bent: like hell-bent but more pleasurable ;-)
caused a big sensation: were admired

well made-up: happy
bought by me [the flat?]: he's probably referring to himself as "the flat" (slang, from 1753), i.e. a foolishly conventional person, or it's folk processing of "that's flat" (slang, from 1598), meaning it's the truth.

Tip: usually short for Thomas
chucked me in the bin: slang for "finished me off", or possibly a reference to a hopper for hops. ;-)

doing time: being held in custody, usually a prison sentence (as little as a few days for minor disorderly conduct)
forsook: forsaken
slung their blooming hook: gone

come back broke: with no money (slang, from 1661) but also a pun on our hero's broken heart which was mentioned earlier


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Irish Hop Pole Puller
From: GUEST,Martin Ryan
Date: 19 Jul 15 - 11:52 AM

Magdalen, pronounced "maudlin", seems very likely alright.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Irish Hop Pole Puller
From: Joe Offer
Date: 19 Jul 15 - 03:52 PM

This is great! Thanks a lot for posting these lyrics.
-Joe-


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Irish Hop Pole Puller
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Jul 15 - 06:38 AM

That's what I was thinking, Martin. I'm sure any Comedy Costermonger music hall act worth his salt could sing "modern" to imply "maudlin" or "mag-d'lin" if he wanted to.

You're welcome, Joe. Thank you again for the link to Okee Dokee.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Irish Hop Pole Puller
From: GUEST,Infrequent but always polite guest
Date: 20 Jul 15 - 07:00 AM

P.S. The anonymous "Guest" comment above was me again but I forgot to sign it, sorry.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Irish Hop Pole Puller
From: Vic Smith
Date: 20 Jul 15 - 08:42 AM

GUEST,Infrequent but always polite guest wrote
"Hunton Bull: The Bull is a pub"


It is; but there isn't and as far as I know, there never has been a pub called The Bull in the fairly secluded hamlet of Hunton. However, just four miles away - and on a main road - is the village of Linton where there is a pub called The Bull. This has led me, when I sing it, to make these lines:-
We drove as far as Crockham Hill
And then to Linton Bull....


.... but then I know that pedantry has been known to get the upper hand in my reasoning sometimes.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Irish Hop Pole Puller
From: GUEST,Infrequent but always polite guest
Date: 21 Jul 15 - 06:13 AM

"Linton Bull" sounds an entirely reasonable alteration, Vic. Although if you're aiming for geographical accuracy I suppose the long journey from Crockham Hill in a coster's broken down donkey cart might need shortening too.

I wish I had an older version of the lyrics to compare.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Irish Hop Pole Puller
From: Long Firm Freddie
Date: 21 Jul 15 - 11:49 AM

There's a property in Hunton called the Old Bull House; it was Grade II listed in 1987 and was formerly a pub.


Grade II Listing

LFF


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Irish Hop Pole Puller
From: Vic Smith
Date: 21 Jul 15 - 01:04 PM

Thanks for that Freddie. I'm glad to be proved wrong! Funny having two pubs called The Bull so close to one another.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Irish Hop Pole Puller
From: GUEST,Infrequent but always polite guest
Date: 05 Aug 15 - 11:09 AM

I hope one "bump", after a fortnight's break, is okay.

I'm still interested in any more information about this song, especially if anyone has any more specific ideas about its origins beyond probably being a (London) music hall song disseminated after 1880 or so.

Thank you all for your time, again.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Irish Hop Pole Puller
From: GUEST,Molly-not-dancing
Date: 26 Sep 15 - 09:02 PM

Interesting footnote: Fred Russell, Putney born ventriloquist started appearing around 1886 with his doll named Coster Joe. Wikipedia and elsewhere has info and it appears he was working well into the 1940s. It's amazing what you can learn from QI elves.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Irish Hop Pole Puller
From: GUEST,Mike Yates
Date: 24 Oct 15 - 05:42 AM

I am hoping to include George Spicer's version of the song on a forthcoming Musical Traditions CD. As yet the CD has no title.


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