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Lyr Add: The Bold Robber

In Mudcat MIDIs:
The Jolly Bold Robber
The Saucy Bold Robber


Malcolm Douglas 01 Jan 00 - 04:47 PM
katlaughing 02 Jan 00 - 09:28 AM
jabjo 02 Jan 00 - 01:28 PM
Malcolm Douglas 02 Jan 00 - 03:44 PM
jabjo 02 Jan 00 - 05:20 PM
Alan of Australia 04 Jan 00 - 02:25 AM
MudGuard 04 Jan 00 - 02:43 AM
toadfrog 24 Apr 01 - 08:37 PM
Malcolm Douglas 24 Apr 01 - 08:48 PM
toadfrog 24 Apr 01 - 11:14 PM
Joe Offer 24 Apr 01 - 11:58 PM
toadfrog 26 Apr 01 - 02:01 AM
GUEST,John Mayberry 26 Apr 01 - 03:39 AM
RoyH (Burl) 26 Apr 01 - 07:05 AM
GUEST,Gerry 07 Dec 16 - 07:43 AM
Steve Gardham 07 Dec 16 - 02:43 PM
Steve Gardham 07 Dec 16 - 03:39 PM
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Subject: Lyr Add: THE JOLLY BOLD ROBBER^^
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 01 Jan 00 - 04:47 PM

This song was collected by Ralph Vaughan Williams from a fisherman called Anderson, of King's Lynn in Norfolk, England, and published in his Folk Songs from the Eastern Counties (1908, re-published in 1961 in a collected edition edited by Cecil Sharp, as English County Songs), and subsequently in A.L. Lloyd's Folk Song in England (1967), which is where I found it.  It is confusingly called The Saucy Bold Robber; the more obvious title I use here is also that used by Brass Monkey on their 1983 recording of it, the only one I have ever come across.

The Jolly Bold Robber

Oh come you good people that go out a-tippling,
I pray you give attention and listen to my song.
I'll sing you a ditty of a jolly bold robber,
Stood seven foot high, in proportion quite strong.

He robbed lawyer Morgan and old Lady Dawkins;
Five hundred bright guineas from each one of them;
And as he was a-strolling he met a young sailor,
And bold as a lion he slewed up to him.

"Hand over your money, you saucy young sailor.
You've plenty of bulk in your pocket, I know."
"Oh, aye," says the sailor, "I have got a bit of money,
And I'd damned if I see why I should give it to you.

I've just left my ship, give the press-gang the slip,
And I'm bound up to London my sweetheart to see.
I've four bright sovereigns for to pay our sweet lodgings,
So I pray you, jolly robber, please leave it to me."

Then the robber caught hold of that gallant young sailor;
With a blow like a pole-axe felled him to the ground.
"Oh aye," says the sailor, "You have struck me quite heavy,
And now I'll endeavour to repay you in kind."

It was then, boys, they stripped and like tigers they skipped,
And they fought blow for blow like to soldiers in the field.
At the ninety-seventh meeting it was the completing,
For this gallant young sailor the bold robber he killed.

Then the sailor looked down on the bloodstained bold robber.
"I hope you'll forgive me, old fellow," says he,
"But if I had just lifted a thousand bright guineas,
I'm damned if I'd have stopped a poor sailor like me."

"The moral is Brechtian;" says Lloyd, "it is folly to rob the poor when one can so much more profitably plunder the rich."  The tune is a particularly fine one in the aeolian (La) mode; I will send a midi of it to the Midi site.
^^
Malcolm


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Bold Robber
From: katlaughing
Date: 02 Jan 00 - 09:28 AM

Thanks, Malcolm, great song, can't wait to hear the midi.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Bold Robber
From: jabjo
Date: 02 Jan 00 - 01:28 PM

Malcolm,

Like you, I know no other sources for the song. My memory may be misleading me, but in the 'English County Songs' book, aren't the names of the lawyer and lady different?

Jabjo

Still, it's encouraging that such excellent songs have been rediscovered less than 20 years ago - who knows what I might find...


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Bold Robber
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 02 Jan 00 - 03:44 PM

Jabjo

I haven't seen English County Songsfor a long time; just quoted from Lloyd's bibliography.  I must try to get to the serious library when the holidays are over...

Malcolm


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Bold Robber
From: jabjo
Date: 02 Jan 00 - 05:20 PM

Malcolm,

Will do the same, but as I remember it, the English County (or Country as Brass Monkey would have it) Songs has several lyrical variations...

jabjo


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Bold Robber
From: Alan of Australia
Date: 04 Jan 00 - 02:25 AM

G'day,
Thanks to Malcolm The Midi can be downloaded from the Mudcat MIDI site

Cheers,
Alan


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Bold Robber
From: MudGuard
Date: 04 Jan 00 - 02:43 AM

jabjo,
I have a version by John Faulkner where the Lady is called Dorking (the lyrics are given for the song, so this is not from listening to the song), but the Lawyer has still the name Morgan
There is no source for the lyrics given.

MudGuard


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Bold Robber
From: toadfrog
Date: 24 Apr 01 - 08:37 PM

This is a good song; I have an old tape of Lloyd singing it. Since you have the MIDI, how come it never made it onto the DT?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Bold Robber
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 24 Apr 01 - 08:48 PM

It can take quite a long time for things to get into the DT proper; the workload is pretty huge for the very few people who do the compiling.  As a sort of "halfway house" for tunes belonging to songs posted in the Forum, Alan of Oz set up the  Mudcat Midi Pages; the tune for The Bold Robber is currently held there, but the link Alan gave above is out of date now.

Click to play

Malcolm


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Bold Robber
From: toadfrog
Date: 24 Apr 01 - 11:14 PM

Thanks a lot, Malcom! I didn't mean to denigrate your fine work. Just wanted to make sure this one didn't get lost.


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Subject: Song harvesting
From: Joe Offer
Date: 24 Apr 01 - 11:58 PM

Hi, toadfrog. If you see the birdie wings ^^ next to the song, that means that the song has been harvested for submission to the Digital Tradition. Jim Dixon and I do most of the harvesting. We do the inital correction of formatting and searching to see if we might already have the song, and then we send the texts on to Dick Greenhaus and Susan of DT for final processing. Dick has the hardest job - formatting the tunes and putting all the information into the database.
If you see triple wings (one redundant wing), that means that the song has already been posted, or is already in the Digital Tradition. That third wing is our way of mildly chiding those who post what has already been posted.

I'd like to add that I'm in awe of the great research people like Malcolm do when they post songs - there are many who do good work, but Malcolm's especially good at it. He posts fascinating background information, not just the lyrics. His lyrics postings often stimulate some fascinating discussions. My hat is off to you, Malcolm.

-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Bold Robber
From: toadfrog
Date: 26 Apr 01 - 02:01 AM

Thanks for putting me straight. By the way, I submitted two suggested songs by posting them to "Looking for New Songs to Sing." I see now that was incorrect, but hope they don't get overlooked-they are good songs.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Bold Robber
From: GUEST,John Mayberry
Date: 26 Apr 01 - 03:39 AM

It's also on an old Roy Harris album. Either "Champions of Folly" or, or, or......can't think of the other one, sorry. Good song.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Bold Robber
From: RoyH (Burl)
Date: 26 Apr 01 - 07:05 AM

You are correct John. Under the title 'The Saucy Bold Robber' its on 'Champions of Folly' Topic 12TS256, pubs 1975. Roy Harris, with backings by Martin Carthy, Vic Gammon, and Bobby Campbell. This is on vinyl, so most likely found on the second hand market nowadays. However, the song is also on'Bold Sportsmen All' Topic TSCD495, a CD which has 8 songs by Ewan MacColl, 8 by A.L.Lloyd, and 1, 'Saucy Bold Robber', by Roy Harris.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Bold Robber
From: GUEST,Gerry
Date: 07 Dec 16 - 07:43 AM

It's also on Nic Jones, Game Set Match.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Bold Robber
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 07 Dec 16 - 02:43 PM

The version posted by Malcolm has seen some redaction if the version given in JFSS8 (1906) is anything to go by. I've always been somewhat suspicious of this unique one (as is my wont). It sounds too good to be true, great words and super tune, a step above the usual broadside doggerel it partly imitates. If I get time I'll post the song as collected. It's only the odd word here and there and the version Malcolm posted is a definite improvement.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: The Bold Robber
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 07 Dec 16 - 03:39 PM

The Bold Robber (Title given in JFSS and my Master Title)

O come you good people that go out a-tippling,
I pray give attention and list'n to my song,
I'll sing you a ditty of a jolly bold robber,
Stood seven feet high in proportion quite strong.

He robbed lawyer Morgans and lady of Dorgans, (?)
Five hundred bright guineas from each one of them,
Till he was a-walking he met a young sailor
And bold as a lion he steppe`d up to him.

"Deliver your money, my jolly young sailor,
You have plenty of bulk in your pocket I see,"
"But then (aye?)" says the sailor, "I have plenty of money,
But while I have life I have got none for thee.

I have just left my shipping and taken my money,
I'm bound for old England my friends for to see,
I've ninety bright guineas my friends to make merry,
So I pray, jolly robber, don't take it from me."

Then the saucy bold robber struck the jolly young sailor,
Such a blow on the head which brought him to the ground,
"But aye (?)" says the sailor, "you have struck me quite heavy
But I must endeavour to return it again."

O then they did strippe`d like lambkins they skippe`d
They went life for life like to soldiers in field,
And the ninety-eighth meeting it was a completement
And this jolly young sailor the robber then killed.

Says the jolly young sailor to the bold saucy robber,
"I hope you won't lay any blame upon me,
If I'd been a robber of ten hundred guineas
I never would have stopped a poor sailor like me."

Sung by Mr Anderson at King's Lynn Jan 10th 1905. Tune noted by Vaughan Williams.

Kidson makes one or two general comments chiefly that he has never come across it anywhere. No broadside has come to light. I'm pretty certain the 'ninety-eighth meeting it was a completing' line comes from one or more of the prize fight ballads. The rest of Anderson's repertoire is well-known ballads


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