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The Martins & The Coys: Ballad Opera

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THE MARTINS AND THE COYS


Related threads:
Folklore: Hatfields v. McCoys - explained? (7)
Lyr ADD: The Martins and the Coys (Cameron, Weems) (7)
Tune Req: Martins and the Coys (Variants) (1)


Mike Regenstreif 29 Feb 00 - 09:21 AM
Joe Offer 05 Jul 12 - 05:56 PM
JJ 06 Jul 12 - 08:22 AM
JJ 06 Jul 12 - 08:31 AM
Desert Dancer 06 Jul 12 - 12:09 PM
Joe Offer 06 Jul 12 - 05:10 PM
Desert Dancer 06 Jul 12 - 05:27 PM
Jim Carroll 23 Jul 12 - 03:49 AM
Jim Carroll 24 Jul 12 - 03:12 AM
Joe Offer 24 Jul 12 - 11:30 PM
GUEST 25 Jul 12 - 02:43 AM
Joe Offer 26 Jul 12 - 01:49 AM
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Subject: The Martins & The Coys: Thursday on CKUT
From: Mike Regenstreif
Date: 29 Feb 00 - 09:21 AM

As I mentioned last week, my weekly program, Folk Roots/Folk Branches is heard Thursday mornings from 9-11:30 (Eastern) on CKUT, 90.3 FM in Montreal, and available live on the web via RealAudio. The CKUT RealAudio feed is available at the Folk Roots/Folk Branches site.

In the second hour of Folk Roots/Folk Branches this week, we'll feature "THE MARTINS AND THE COYS," a 40-minute ballad opera produced for the BBC by Alan Lomax in 1944 and now reissued as "The Ballad Operas: The Martins and The Coys (Rounder)," part of the Concert and Radio Series in the Alan Lomax Collection.

Featured players: Burl Ives (narrator), Will Geer (Uncle Boone Martin), Geoffrey Bryant (Ben Martin), Jimmy Dobson (Oaty Martin), Katherine Raht (Dellie Coy), Helen Claire (Sary Coy), Woody Guthrie (Alex Coy).

Featured musicians: Lily May Ledford, Pete Seeger, Fiddlin' Arthur Smith, Hally Wood.

Supporting musicians: Tom Glazer, Cisco Houston, Rosalie Allen, Sonny Terry.

In addition to the narration and dialogue, the ballad opera includes 16 traditional and topical songs. (Note: The CD contains an additional six related bonus tracks that were not part of the BBC production and which will not be heard at this time).

There's lots of other great music on the show before and after the feature.

Mike Regenstreif


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Subject: RE: The Martins & The Coys: Ballad Opera
From: Joe Offer
Date: 05 Jul 12 - 05:56 PM

Here's information from the Rounder CD:

The Alan Lomax Collection gathers together the American, European, and Caribbean field recordings, world music compilations, and ballad operas of writer, folklorist, and ethnomusicologist Alan Lomax. The Concert and Radio Series is devoted to live concerts and radio programs produced by Alan Lomax at Town Hall and Carnegie Hall, and on CBS and the BBC. Produced in 1944 for the British Broadcasting Company, The Martins and the Coys is a fascinating curio in the Alan Lomax canon. This ballad opera finds the legendary mountain families setting aside their differences to defeat Hitler during World War II. A once-in-a-lifetime cast features Will Geer, Woody Guthrie, Burl Ives, Lily May Ledford, Pete Seeger, Fiddlin' Arthur Smith, and Hally Wood.

Track Listing

1. The Martins And The Coys - Pete Seeger/Chorus
2. Introduction - Burl Ives
3. Cumberland Mountian Bear Chase - Burl Ives/Will Geer/Pete Seeger
4. The Martins Meet The Coys - Burl Ives/Helen Claire/Katherine Raht/Will Geer/Jimmy Dobson/Geoffrey Bryant
5. Run, Boys, Run - Pete Seeger/Chorus
6. Back To The Cabin - Jimmy Dobson/Geoffrey Bryant/Will Geer
7. Black Is The Color Of My True Love's Hair - Burl Ives
8. Alec Coy At The Induction Center - 'Chairman'/'Sergeant'/Woody Guthrie
9. You Better Get Ready - Woody Guthrie/Chorus
10. At The Deer Forks Railway Depot - Burl Ives/'Stationmaster'/Katherine Raht/Woody Guthrie/Will Geer/Jimmy Dobson/Geoffrey Bryant
11. Nine Hundred Miles - Woody Guthrie
12. The Train Departs - Burl Ives
13. On Top Of Old Smoky - Hally Wood
14. An Agricultural Agent Visits The Coys - Katherine Raht/Helen Claire/Carson Robison
15. Deliver The Goods - Lily May Ledford/Rosalie/Bella Allen/Chorus
16. Alec And Ben In The Army Camp - Burl Ives/Woody Guthrie/Geoffrey Bryant/'Sergeant'
17. When We All Go Marching In - Pete Seeger/Chorus
18. The Deer Forks Victory Garden - Burl Ives/Will Geer/'Lum'/Margaret Johnson/Helen Claire/Katherine Raht
19. Red Rocking Chair - Alan Lomax/Hally Wood
20. Uncle Boone Visits The Coys - Will Geer/Katherine Raht/Helen Claire
21. How Many Biscuits Can You Eat? - Lily May Ledford/Rosalie/Bella Allen/Will Geer
22. Ben And Alec Call Off The Feud - Geoffrey Bryant/Woody Guthrie
23. All Of You Fascists Bound To Lose - Woody Guthrie/Chorus
24. Ben And Sary Meet Again - Geoffrey Bryant/Helen Claire
25. The Turtledove - Burl Ives/Hally Wood
26. Ben Proposes To Sary - Geoffrey Bryant/Helen Claire
27. Smoky Mountain Gals - Lily May Ledford/Rosalie/Bella Allen/Chorus
28. Dance All Night With A Bottle In Your Hand - Fiddlin' Arthur Smith/Woody Guthrie
29. 'Round And 'Round Hitler's Grave - Burl Ives/Woody Guthrie/Pete Seeger/Chorus
30. Closing - Burl Ives
31. The New Martins And The Coys - Pete Seeger/Woody Guthrie/Sonny Terry/Chorus
32. The Martins And The Coys - Ted Weems And His Orchestra
33. The New Martins And The Coys - The Union Boys (The Almanac Singers)
34. East Virginia Blues - Lily May Ledford
35. Sugar Babe - Lily May Ledford/Pete Seeger
36. Gypsy Davy - Lily May Ledford
37. The Girls In This Neighborhood - Lily May Ledford


Here's information about another Seeger version of "Martins and the Coys," from the Smithsonian/Folkways album titled That's Why We're Marching: World War II and the American Folksong Movement
14. THE MARTINS AND THE COYS Union Boys:
Pete Seeger, vocal/banjo; Burl Ives, vocallguitar; Alan Lomax, vocal; Tom Glazer, vocal; Sonny Terry, harmonica; possibly others. Previously unreleased track (Words by the Almanac Singers, music adaptation of”Hatfields and McCoys”; recorded March 1944, matrix 616, Smithsonian Acetate #754, 12” acetate)

The Almanac Singers assigned a few of their songs to the songwriter and song publisher, Bob Miller; he published them under the title Songs of the Almanac Singers (New York: Bob Miller, Inc., 1942). One of the songs was “The New Hatfields and the Coys,” in which the feuding families gave up their feud to join hands in fighting Hitler; Cousin Abner even agreed to stay “sober until the shooting’s over.” The theme came from the legendary Kentucky fami1y feuds: the Martin-Tolliver feud and the Hatfield-McCoy feud.

Elizabeth and Alan Lomax took this theme and wrote a musical radio play; she wrote the dialogue and he arranged the music, and the song was rewritten as “The Martins and the Coys,’ which also became the title of the radio “contemporary folk tale.” No network in the United States would carry the show, so Alan Lomax arranged to record it in the Decca studio for broadcast by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC).

The cast was a mixture of excellent actors along with folk and country musicians. Burl Ives and Woody Guthrie were both singers and actors; Will Geer, Helen Claire, and other actors helped carry the narrative; the musicians also included Pete Seeger (on furlough from the U.S. Army), Cisco Houston, Sonny Terry, Tom Glazer, Carson J. Robison, Arthur Smith, Lily May Pearson and the Coon Creek Girls, Rosalie Allen, and others.

Five of the songs used in the production are in this collection, for Lomax assembled the songs he considered to be appropriate anti-Hitler songs. Woody Guthrie either wrote them or played a major role in their composition. However, the versions in this collection are not the original BBC recordings. The musicians, as listed in the credits, recorded the songs for Moses Asch as singles, not as the radio play “The Martins and the Coys.”


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Subject: RE: The Martins & The Coys: Ballad Opera
From: JJ
Date: 06 Jul 12 - 08:22 AM

I have a bizarre memory of this as an animated cartoon, made for the movies but seen by me on TV many years ago.

Did this happen, or am I losing my mind?


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Subject: RE: The Martins & The Coys: Ballad Opera
From: JJ
Date: 06 Jul 12 - 08:31 AM

Found the answer in another thread. "Yes, there's an animated cartoon" if you're wondering.


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Subject: RE: The Martins & The Coys: Ballad Opera
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 06 Jul 12 - 12:09 PM

Looks like that's no longer available from Rounder, Joe? You must have gotten the track list from amazon.com?

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: The Martins & The Coys: Ballad Opera
From: Joe Offer
Date: 06 Jul 12 - 05:10 PM

Hi, Becky -

Rounder is in transition, and it's hard to know what's going to happen to its Lomax series. If you search for Lomax at Rounder, you will find 107 entries - and the "buy" links at those entries lead to Amazon.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: The Martins & The Coys: Ballad Opera
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 06 Jul 12 - 05:27 PM

I check the sources of "new" copies of the album at Amazon -- none of them are from Rounder. One does wonder what's happening there. :-(

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE:The Martins & The Coys: Ballad Opera
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 23 Jul 12 - 03:49 AM

Does anybody have any information on another of Lomax's ballad operas, 'The Stone of Tory' (an island off the Donegal Coast) - ie; is there a surviving recording.
Thanks,
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: The Martins & The Coys: Ballad Opera
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 24 Jul 12 - 03:12 AM

Refresh


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Subject: RE: The Martins & The Coys: Ballad Opera
From: Joe Offer
Date: 24 Jul 12 - 11:30 PM

I'm surprised. I thought all of the Lomax recordings had been made available to the public, either for free online or on the Rounder recordings. I'm wondering what happened to this one.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: The Martins & The Coys: Ballad Opera
From: GUEST
Date: 25 Jul 12 - 02:43 AM

I know this one existed.
It was written by Lomax and recorded at the (Royal) Irish Acadamy of Music in Dublin in May 1951
Beyond that...........
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: The Martins & The Coys: Ballad Opera
From: Joe Offer
Date: 26 Jul 12 - 01:49 AM

refresh


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