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Travellers'Songs McColl/Seeger NewCD-Rom

Vic Smith 24 Sep 15 - 09:31 AM
GUEST,Nick Dow 24 Sep 15 - 10:29 AM
GUEST,Mike Yates 24 Sep 15 - 11:50 AM
Vic Smith 28 Sep 15 - 01:59 PM
Steve Gardham 28 Sep 15 - 02:38 PM
Steve Gardham 28 Sep 15 - 04:28 PM
Vic Smith 28 Sep 15 - 04:49 PM
Vic Smith 28 Sep 15 - 05:19 PM
GUEST,Nick Dow 28 Sep 15 - 07:43 PM
JHW 29 Sep 15 - 04:29 PM
GUEST,padgett 30 Sep 15 - 02:34 PM
Vic Smith 12 Oct 15 - 07:45 AM
JHW 13 Oct 15 - 07:02 AM
Steve Gardham 13 Oct 15 - 03:09 PM
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Subject: Travellers'Songs McColl/Seeger NewCD-Rom
From: Vic Smith
Date: 24 Sep 15 - 09:31 AM

Less than an hour ago, my postman handed quite a big bunch of packages - some very tasty CDs amongst them, but one made me rush to my computer straight away - a CD-ROM version of the great 1977 MacColl/Seeger book "Travellers' Songs from England and Scotland" - all the songs plus 130 .mp3 recordings including 40 by Caroline Hughes. I've only had a cursory glance but I am convinced of the importance of it already.
I am going to be a very engaged and happy bunny for a long time.

It is so new that Rod Stradling has not yet got around to mentioning it on the Musical Traditions website.
Here. by way od introduction, is what Rod says on the introductory page of the CD-ROM:-

Welcome to the CD-ROM version of



Travellers' Songs from
England and Scotland
by Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger, 1977


Important - please read this first!



When compiling their book, MacColl and Seeger presented the songs in the best possible way - they used the most stable tune, in a good singable key, utilising verses from more than one recording when available, and presented in a sensible order. So, in some cases, the sound file you hear will not exactly match what's printed on the page.

Moreover, most of these recordings were made in the early-1960s, and have been archived in various places since then. Unfortunately, this has meant that a good number of the recordings have not been traceable in their principal archives at the British Library, London, or Ruskin College, Oxford - although Raymond King, Learning Resources Manager at Ruskin, has been extremely helpful. In these cases, I am very grateful to Jim Carroll and Pat Mackenzie for supplying copies of many of the missing recordings. And also to Tom Spiers, Vic Smith, and Terry Yarnell for the very last four, which are not actually MacColl and Seeger recordings. Only one of the 156 songs does not have a sound file.

And - for what is now the fifth MT Records' publication containing recordings made by Ewan and Peggy - I must express my sincere thanks to Peggy Seeger for her enthusiastic permission to use the text and recordings you will find in these pages.

This CD-ROM project is composed of Web Pages, and runs in your Web Browser - though be aware of a problem with Chrome (see below). It works in exactly the same way as most websites do. There is a 'side of page' Navigation Bar, always in view, which provides links to all parts of the book. All the individual songs are accessible from either the Table of Contents page, the Singers page, or the two Index pages. Furthermore, there are links on each Song page 'On' to the next song and 'Back' to the previous one.

Since this book contains some large pages of text, and since wide lines of text are difficult read (particularly on modern wide-screen monitors), it has been designed to run in a relatively narrow window.

The staff notations for songs are displayed as graphics with MP3 sound file links - shown by them being outlined in blue (or purple). Where there is no sound file available, the outline is in black. When clicked, the link will activate your currently installed media player - which may obscure the page you were reading at the time!

Unfortunately, if you use Google's Chrome browser you will have no choice about this although, if you right-click the notation graphic and choose 'open in a new tab', it doesn't obscure the page ... but you will end up with tabs open for each song you listen to! Most other browsers allow you to choose which media player to use. If you use the Windows Media Player, you can set it to run in 'Compact Mode', which overcomes this problem. To do this, click the button in the bottom/right corner of the Player (the text 'Switch to compact mode' pops up). If you use a different Media Player, you can probably set it to run in a similar compact mode.

Once activated by playing the first MP3 sound file, just click anywhere in the main page (even whilst it's still playing) and it will disappear, but continue to play, and will play again when you click the next sound file.


Rod Stradling - Autumn 2015


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Subject: RE: Travellers'Songs McColl/Seeger NewCD-Rom
From: GUEST,Nick Dow
Date: 24 Sep 15 - 10:29 AM

This looks wonderful. I met Caroline Hughes daughter Carrie when I was collecting in Dorset, couldn't get her to sing though. I got some great memories about her Mother. No doubt Rod will E.mail me soon. Thanks for the details Vic.


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Subject: RE: Travellers'Songs McColl/Seeger NewCD-Rom
From: GUEST,Mike Yates
Date: 24 Sep 15 - 11:50 AM

My copy arrived this morning, too. An amazing project. Another great one from Rod.


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Subject: RE: Travellers'Songs McColl/Seeger NewCD-Rom
From: Vic Smith
Date: 28 Sep 15 - 01:59 PM

Announced today on the Musical Traditions website :-

Another new MT Records' CD-ROM release
Travellers' Songs from England and Scotland, by Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger (MTCD254). Songs collected in 1962 - 1976, a 387 page digital book with 155 embedded MP3 sound files.

MacColl and Seeger's 1977 book was years ahead of its time in terms of its detailed consideration of all aspects of Gypsy and Traveller songs and culture in the UK. The Introduction and Music Notes are hugely informative, as are the 12 pages on the 18 singers.

All the 131 songs (in 155 versions!) are here as full length MP3 recordings, as well as the original texts and staff notations. Everything is cross-referenced and linked.

The singers concerned are: Emily Baker; Willie Cameron; Charlotte Higgins; Jock Higgins; Caroline Hughes; Henry Hughes; Sheila Hughes; William Hughes; Ruby Kelby; Christina MacAllister; Wilhelmina MacAllister; John MacDonald; Maggie McPhee; Big Willie McPhee; Nelson Ridley; Maria Robertson; Levi Smith; Jeannie Thompson.

This is essential reading - and listening - for anyone with an interest in Gypsy and Traveller songs and culture in the UK.

It's available now from the MT Records website, price £12.00 + p&p.


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Subject: RE: Travellers'Songs McColl/Seeger NewCD-Rom
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 28 Sep 15 - 02:38 PM

Vic,
Is this the actual recordings of the singers? If so I just can't believe you get all this for just £12. Amazing value. I have had the book since it came out and have found it very useful.


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Subject: RE: Travellers'Songs McColl/Seeger NewCD-Rom
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 28 Sep 15 - 04:28 PM

Just had a reply from Rod. It is the actual recordings of the singers, unbelievable value!


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Subject: RE: Travellers'Songs McColl/Seeger NewCD-Rom
From: Vic Smith
Date: 28 Sep 15 - 04:49 PM

It is, Steve. Not just amazing value but amazingly user-friendly.

Let's take Georgie - Number 16 page 91 in the book. On the CD-ROM:-
* Insert the disc - an opening introductory page comes up - Welcome to the CD-ROM version,
* Click on "Move on to the Digital Book" at the bottom of the page.
* That takes you to a Contents page with clickable links to all 131 songs. Click on 16 Geordie (Child 209)
* That opens the page and the introduction and the bibliography are identical to that given in the book. That is followed by the 'A' version from Henry Hughes. The musical stave in in a box followed by his 6 verses.
* Click anywhere in that box. This opens another screen and opens the associated sound file and we hear the six verses from Henry's rough and wonderful voice with a fair amount of chatter in the background (mainly Caroline's). Wonderful stuff!
* Click the 'Back' button to take you back to the Geordie page.
* Scroll down to the 'B' version. There is Levi Smith's version - again there is a box with the stave followed by his three verses.
* Click on the box and you open a sound file to hear one of my all-time favourite voices and the most garbled version of a ballad that you are ever likely to hear
* Back once again to the Geordie page. There is a 'C' version of the ballad, this time a recording of Nelson Ridley. Unlike the first two versions, I am not familiar with this one. It bears great similarities in text and tune to Levi's but the approach to the song is fascinatingly different.

I hope that I am managing to convey the sustained enjoyment that I am getting from this CD-ROM. All sorts of other things that I ought to be doing are simply not getting done.


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Subject: RE: Travellers'Songs McColl/Seeger NewCD-Rom
From: Vic Smith
Date: 28 Sep 15 - 05:19 PM

1968.
We were at a ceilidh at Belle & Alex Stewart's house in Yeaman Street, Rattray, Blairgowrie. Many of the giants of Scottish traveller singing were in the room and we sat on the floor very quietly and soaked it all up. An old lady was asked to sing and she sang The Bonny Hoose o'Airlie. I remember feeling that it was disappointing that she was singing it to the tune of Loch Lomond. I was used to it being sung by Belle to a different tune.
This was Charlotte Higgins. I've just heard it again (No. 15 on the CD-ROM) for the first time in 47 years and I'd like to tell you, Charlotte, that I was wrong, very wrong. Now your version sounds more of less perfect.


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Subject: RE: Travellers'Songs McColl/Seeger NewCD-Rom
From: GUEST,Nick Dow
Date: 28 Sep 15 - 07:43 PM

The moral of that story is to keep looking keep listening and keep learning. Can't wait for my copy.


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Subject: RE: Travellers'Songs McColl/Seeger NewCD-Rom
From: JHW
Date: 29 Sep 15 - 04:29 PM

Just got the emailout about it. Reckon its a must! I shall order it now.


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Subject: RE: Travellers'Songs McColl/Seeger NewCD-Rom
From: GUEST,padgett
Date: 30 Sep 15 - 02:34 PM

Just received the CD and mp3s of the singers and notes etc overnight!

Ray

also have the Sam Larner from MT as recorded by McColl/Seeger

format needs a bit of getting used to btw, but more you look the better your search technique!!


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Subject: RE: Travellers'Songs McColl/Seeger NewCD-Rom
From: Vic Smith
Date: 12 Oct 15 - 07:45 AM

I've just been asked to review this for fRoots, I might be able to say some nice things about it!!!


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Subject: RE: Travellers'Songs McColl/Seeger NewCD-Rom
From: JHW
Date: 13 Oct 15 - 07:02 AM

Got mine and it is amazingly comprehensive. i can't sit listening to the computer though and will have to put clips on cd that will play in the car.

Forget that - I've just been out to the car and the songs play straight away!


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Subject: RE: Travellers'Songs McColl/Seeger NewCD-Rom
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 13 Oct 15 - 03:09 PM

Wow! I know I'm slow. I'm just going to order mine.


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