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Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'

Related threads:
Lyr Add: Where Be That Blackbird To? (29)
Tune Req: The Blackbird by The Wurzels (13)
Lyr Req: Where Be Yon Blackbird To? (2) (closed)


GUEST,NickN@internetcds.com 08 Jun 00 - 05:50 PM
little john cameron 08 Jun 00 - 05:59 PM
little john cameron 08 Jun 00 - 06:16 PM
little john cameron 08 Jun 00 - 06:18 PM
Malcolm Douglas 08 Jun 00 - 11:04 PM
MikeofNorthumbria 09 Jun 00 - 12:05 PM
TerriM 09 Jun 00 - 02:12 PM
Pene Azul 09 Jun 00 - 02:29 PM
wildlone 09 Jun 00 - 02:44 PM
Grab 12 Jun 00 - 02:34 PM
GUEST,Dodge 12 Jun 00 - 02:54 PM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 12 Jun 00 - 03:48 PM
GUEST,Liz the Squeak 13 Jun 00 - 02:37 AM
Skipjack K8 13 Jun 00 - 04:38 AM
GUEST,A Somerset Family!!! 14 Oct 02 - 04:59 PM
GUEST,gelfling 15 Oct 02 - 10:41 AM
GUEST,tenbears 27 Jul 03 - 08:15 PM
GUEST,nanasdaughter 27 Jul 03 - 08:52 PM
Sorcha 27 Jul 03 - 09:31 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 27 Jul 03 - 11:33 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 27 Jul 03 - 11:35 PM
GUEST, GEST 28 Jul 03 - 07:32 PM
GUEST,jo Guest 22 May 07 - 11:10 AM
Liz the Squeak 22 May 07 - 12:12 PM
GUEST,Terry McDonald 22 May 07 - 02:02 PM
Liz the Squeak 22 May 07 - 05:23 PM
MuddleC 23 May 07 - 12:19 PM
GUEST,Terry McDonald 23 May 07 - 01:47 PM
Tradsinger 23 May 07 - 03:28 PM
Morticia 23 May 07 - 06:13 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 23 May 07 - 10:19 PM
greg stephens 24 May 07 - 08:27 AM
GUEST,Terry McDonald 24 May 07 - 08:39 AM
Big Jim from Jackson 24 May 07 - 11:56 AM
GUEST 05 Jun 07 - 04:25 AM
GUEST 08 May 08 - 07:07 AM
GUEST,Edthefolkie 08 May 08 - 07:50 AM
GUEST,Terry McDonald 08 May 08 - 08:40 AM
GUEST,Dale from Down Under 22 May 08 - 02:41 PM
GUEST,HOBOCORE 12 Oct 08 - 01:15 PM
GUEST,EcoVillen 13 Jan 11 - 11:57 PM
GUEST,Sam Dare 21 Nov 11 - 07:22 PM
GUEST,Patsy 22 Nov 11 - 02:43 AM
GUEST,.gargoyle 22 Nov 11 - 04:58 AM
bubblyrat 22 Nov 11 - 06:49 AM
Nigel Parsons 22 Nov 11 - 07:43 AM
bubblyrat 22 Nov 11 - 09:02 AM
GUEST,Poolegirl 25 Sep 12 - 06:46 AM
G-Force 25 Sep 12 - 09:29 AM
GUEST,james rogers 09 Jun 13 - 08:34 AM
GUEST 09 Jun 13 - 01:26 PM
GUEST,Moonraker 30 Jun 15 - 02:55 PM
GUEST,MartinU 09 Mar 16 - 10:30 AM
GUEST,Mike Yates 09 Mar 16 - 10:59 AM
GUEST 24 Sep 16 - 04:03 AM
GUEST,Paul Carling 02 Jun 18 - 05:55 PM
GUEST,Paddy, in Coningsby. 05 Oct 18 - 03:53 PM
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Subject: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,NickN@internetcds.com
Date: 08 Jun 00 - 05:50 PM

When I was growing up in Somerset during the 40s, I remember a song > which I believe was entitled "Where be yon blackbird too?". I don't know > if this was a genuine folk song or simply a ditty used to exploit the > West Country dialect. I recently heard a snatch of the same song in a > "Poldark" video which was set in 1700s Cornwall which suggests some > validity to the song. > > I would very much appreciate any information or sources that you can > suggest; I would particularly like to learn the rest of the lyric. > > Sincerely yours, > > Nick. Nichols


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Subject: RE: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: little john cameron
Date: 08 Jun 00 - 05:59 PM

That was recorded by "The Worsels" about 10yrs ago
LJC


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Subject: RE: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: little john cameron
Date: 08 Jun 00 - 06:16 PM

Here's the addy for the worzels
http://www.users.globalnet.co.uk/~gunning/ajcutler.html
LJC


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Subject: RE: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: little john cameron
Date: 08 Jun 00 - 06:18 PM

http://www.users.globalnet.co.uk/~gunning/ajcutler.html


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Subject: RE: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 08 Jun 00 - 11:04 PM

Lyrics don't seem to be available on the Wurzels page.  I know that I've come across this song recently, but I can't for the life of me remember where.  Here, at any rate, is a bit of it, from The Rent Collectors (Goon Show, January 17, 1957):

Where be that there blackbird to?
I know where he be.
He knows I, I knows he,
He knows I be after he!
Where be that blackbird to?
Up that wurzel tree! Hoi!

Malcolm


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Subject: RE: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: MikeofNorthumbria
Date: 09 Jun 00 - 12:05 PM

As I learned it, from a resident of Somerset, England, many years ago, the song went like this:

Where be yon blackbird to?
I know where 'e be!
'E be up yon wurzel tree
An' I be a'ter 'e!
Well, 'e sees I, an' I sees 'e,
An' 'e knows I be a'ter 'e,
With a bloody great stick, an' 'alf a brick
An' blackbird, I'll 'ave 'e!

The story I heard was that this song used to be sung by young farm boys, whose tedious task it was to scare away birds from newly seeded fields. And I'd guess that the "Blackbird" (or "Black Bird") was probably a crow - they being notorious plunderers of arable fields.

Hope this helps somebody.


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Subject: RE: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: TerriM
Date: 09 Jun 00 - 02:12 PM

I know that I just posted the words to this sometime in the near past but cannot do a clicky. I'll go look but it will have to be later as we're off to the pub....if I can still focus, that is :)


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Subject: RE: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: Pene Azul
Date: 09 Jun 00 - 02:29 PM

TerriM's post of this is here (click).

PA
Thread #21135   Message #223986
Posted By: TerriM
06-May-00 - 08:37 AM
Thread Name: Lyr Add: Where be that Blackbird to?
Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Where be that Blackbird to?

I know where there's a blackbirds nest
I know where 'e be
'e be in yon wurzel bush
An' I be arter 'e

'e spies I, I spies 'e
'E calls I a bugger and a liar
If I gets 'old of that blackbirds nest
I'll catch the bugger on fire

Down on the farm for four and twenty years
'e's tried to take the rise out of I
There baint no bird on this yere farm
Can 'ide it's nesy from I

I wish I was back 'ome in Dorset
Where the birds they fly so high
I claps my 'ands and I laughs like buggery
Just to see they blackbirds fly

That's an approximation of the vernacular, as best as I can do it. I've been singing this song for years and as far as I know that's all there is. I learned it in Wiltshire from a local singer who'd been singing it since he was a kid.


    For the sake of completeness, I pasted a copy of Terri's post here.
    -Joe Offer-


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE DORSET BLACKBIRD
From: wildlone
Date: 09 Jun 00 - 02:44 PM

The Yetties do a slightly different version to the Wurzels which is somthing like this.

THE DORSET BLACKBIRD.

I know where there's a blackbirds nest,
I know where he be,
He be up yon wurzel bush,
An I be after he
He see's I, I see's he,
He calls I a bugger an a liar.
If I gets hold of thic blackbirds nest,
I'll catch the bugger on fire.

Down on the farm for 4 an 20 years,
He's being trying to take the rise out of I.
There aint no birds in these yere parts,
that I hav'nt got scared higher.
I wish I was Back home in Dorset,
Where the birds the fly so high.
I'll Clap my hands and laugh like buggery,
Just to see they blackbirds fly.

I hope I have got the words right.
dave


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Subject: RE: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: Grab
Date: 12 Jun 00 - 02:34 PM

The version I know is the same as Mike's, except the 2nd-to-last verse goes:-

"With a great big stick I'll knock 'e down"

Grab.


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Subject: RE: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,Dodge
Date: 12 Jun 00 - 02:54 PM

This song is sometimes claimed to be the "Somerset National Anthem". (For the benefit of non-UK residents, Somerset is a county in England).

This is the version that I know:

Where be that blackbird to? I know where 'e be! 'E be in yon wurzel bush An' I be a'ter 'e! Well, 'e sees I, an' I sees 'e, An' 'e knows I be a'ter 'e, With a bloody girt stick, I'll clobber 'e! Blackbird, I'll 'ave 'e!

N.B. girt=great clobber=hit (q.v Unix, noclobber)


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Subject: RE: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 12 Jun 00 - 03:48 PM

Ee be in yon awthorne bush and I be ar'ter Ee are the only words I remember sorry.. Yours, Aye. Dave


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Subject: RE: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,Liz the Squeak
Date: 13 Jun 00 - 02:37 AM

It is a Somerset song, the Wurzels (post Adge Cutler) recorded it and it actually became a hit record. I have it somewhere, and I have played it at some point in the last 10 years!..

'Ee sees I, I sees 'ee,
Buggered if I won't get un.
Wi' a gurt big stick, I'll knock un down
Blackbird, I'll 'ave 'ee.

LTS


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Subject: RE: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: Skipjack K8
Date: 13 Jun 00 - 04:38 AM

Don't put your trust in the aunthenticity of Poldark!

One of the howlers I remember was the slug-like cleric played by Christopher Biggins being dragged to his death by his horse. Trouble was his right foot was in the left stirrup, so he must've been riding back to front!

Oh, but Demelza!!!!

Regards

Skipjack (ex resident of Somerset, where all the stockbrokers have forgotten the words)


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Subject: RE: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,A Somerset Family!!!
Date: 14 Oct 02 - 04:59 PM

As far as we know, the song goes like this....

Where be that blackbird to?
I know where he be,
He be up yon wurzel tree
And I be a'der he

And he sees I
And I see he
Buggered if I don't get 'im

With a gurt big stick I'll knock 'im down,
Blackbird, I'll av ee

Lalalalalalaa, lalalalalalaa, 'owz your father?

ALRIGHT!


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Subject: RE: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,gelfling
Date: 15 Oct 02 - 10:41 AM

my father, from devon, used to sing this to me in his broadest accent to make me laugh, when i was small.
oddly though - perhaps for my young ears? - he changed the last line to "blackbird, i loves 'ee!"


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Subject: RE: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,tenbears
Date: 27 Jul 03 - 08:15 PM

This is the fullest version sung as a variety chant by my friend Max from Barnstable in the early seventies. It was called the Dorset national anthem!

Be I Zummerset -be I buggery
Us comes up from Wareham
Where all the girls wear calico drawers
And us knows how to tear em!

Where be that blackbird now?
I know where he be!
Ee be in yon worzel bush
A lookin down on me
Well Ee sees I and I sees ee
And I says what a bugger ee be
With a bloody girt stick I'll knock im down
-Blackbird I'll ave ye!

You make fast -I make fast
Make fast the dinghy-
You make fast kiss my arse
Make fast the dinghy
And we'll all go back to Oggie land
To Oggie land - to Oggie land!
And we'll all go back to Oggie land
Where they can't tell sugar from -
Tissue paper, tissue paper, marmalade and jam!


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Subject: RE: lyrics for Where Be Blackbird To (title?
From: GUEST,nanasdaughter
Date: 27 Jul 03 - 08:52 PM

I FOUND IT!! its at http://nfldsongs.tripod.com
and its under song titles A - G listed as The Blackbird (in th B section) It was recorded by the Wurzels. Now if I could find the sheet music.....


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Subject: RE: lyrics for Where Be Blackbird To (title?
From: Sorcha
Date: 27 Jul 03 - 09:31 PM

if you have a paid version of Noteworthy you can get sheet music from that.


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Subject: RE: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 27 Jul 03 - 11:33 PM

Jumpin' Jehosephat!

I have not hear that song - since I first heard it be, in 1973! Heard it from a chap from The Isle of Jersey!

Thank You! Ten Bears!

Sincerely,
Gargoyle


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Subject: RE: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 27 Jul 03 - 11:35 PM

I take it back....I heard it from a Somerset lad...a true Wurzel...that taught me about scrumpy!!!



Sincerely,

Gargoyle


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Subject: RE: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST, GEST
Date: 28 Jul 03 - 07:32 PM

Where Be It Blackbird To?
Where Be It Blackbird To?

Where be it blackbird to? I know where he be,
He be up yon wurzel tree, and I be after he!
Now I sees he, and he sees I,
(Bugger'd) Brudder if I don't get 'en
Wit a girt big stick I'll knock 'im down
Blackbird I'll 'ave he!
La la la la la la
La la la la la la
'Ow's 'e, Fadder?
(Audience Answer) Alright!

All me life I'm on the farm, workin' for me keep,
Tendin' pigs and chickens, and they cows and sheep;
And then while I'm workin', there's one who always mocks me,
He sittin up 'dere in the trees, blackbird I'll 'ave he!

Where be it blackbird to? I know where he be,
He be up yon wurzel tree, and I be after he!
Now I sees he, and he sees I,
(Bugger'd) Brudder if I don't get 'en
Wit a girt big stick I'll knock 'im down
Blackbird I'll 'ave he!
La la la la la la
La la la la la la
'Ow's 'e, Fadder?
(Audience Answer) Alright!

Underneath the open sky in spring we likes to dine,
We likes to 'ear the flappin' of the missus washin' line;
We listens to a tuneful song, a blackbird or a tit,
But on me vest and underpants he scored a direct hit!

Where be it blackbird to? I know where he be,
He be up yon Wurzel tree, and I be after he!
Now I sees he, and he sees I,
(Bugger'd) Brudder if I don't get 'en
Wit a girt big stick I'll knock 'im down
Blackbird I'll 'ave he!
La la la la la la
La la la la la la
'Ow's 'e, Fadder?
(Audience Answer) Alright!

If I goes out poachin', a creepin' through the fields,
With me old retriever, a followin' at me heels;
If I aim me shotgun at a pheasant in the hay,
That bloody blackbird starts his row and frightens him away!

Where be it blackbird to? I know where he be,
He be up yon wurzel tree, and I be after he!
Now I sees he, and he sees I,
(Bugger'd) Brudder if I don't get 'en
Wit a girt big stick I'll knock 'im down
Blackbird I'll 'ave he!
La la la la la la
La la la la la la
'Ow's 'e, Fadder?
(Audience Answer) Alright!

No longer can I sleep at night, get peace of any kind,
That bird'll be the death of me, he's preyin' on me mind!
If I chase him long enough, I'll get 'im by and by,
And celebrate me vict'ry wit a girt big blackbird pie!

Where be it blackbird to? I know where he be,
He be up yon wurzel tree, and I be after he!
Now I sees he, and he sees I,
(Bugger'd) Brudder if I don't get 'en
Wit a girt big stick I'll knock 'im down
Blackbird I'll 'ave he!
La la la la la la
La la la la la la
'Ow's 'e, Fadder?
(Audience Answer) Alright!


http://nfldsongs.tripod.com/ (song text copy-pasted by Joe Offer)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,jo Guest
Date: 22 May 07 - 11:10 AM

can some one help me I am sorting a clue out for a treasure hunt quiz and the combine harvester song is in there but I need the part of the song that goes yourve got 20 ares and I ve go....

can some one help me out whats the exact wording please??


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 22 May 07 - 12:12 PM

I've got a brand new combine harvester, I'll give you the key,
C'mon now, let's git together in perfect harmony.
I've got 20 acres, and you've got 43. Oh,
I've got a brand new combine harvester, I'll give you the key.

It was a parody of a song 'I've got a brand new pair of rollerskates', the original singer of which I've forgotten but could be Joni Mitchell.

LTS


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,Terry McDonald
Date: 22 May 07 - 02:02 PM

It was Melanie.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 22 May 07 - 05:23 PM

I knew there was an M in there somewhere!! I just remember my brother hated it and turned the radio off whenever it came on.

LTS


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: MuddleC
Date: 23 May 07 - 12:19 PM

I remember hearing Agde Cutler singing 'the blackbird' and 'drink up thee cider', ...always reminds me of my haymaking pitchfork exploits on the somerset levels.
But to find the words on the 'songs of Newfoundland and labrador' site... fair wurdles my bogeling iron


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,Terry McDonald
Date: 23 May 07 - 01:47 PM

Sorry about your bogeling iron - sounds painful, MuddleC, but given that the majority of the population of Newfoundland is of West of England origin (60:40 English to Irish), perhaps it's not so surprising!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: Tradsinger
Date: 23 May 07 - 03:28 PM

You're all wrong - it's a Gloucestershire song! Here's how they used to sing it round here:

I know where there's a blackbird's nest
I know where 'e be
'E be up yon wurzel tree
And I be after 'e
'E spies i and I spies 'e.
He calls me a bugger and liar
When I reach that blackbird's nest,
I'll set the bugger on fire.
Working on the farm, four and twenty years
You can't take a rise out of I
But there yent no birds on this yere farm
Can hide their nests from I.
I wish I was back home in Gloucester
Where all they birds do flock round I
I'd clap my hands and laugh like buggery
Just to see they blackbirds fly.
Be I Gloucestershire, be I buggery
I comes up from Wareham
My old girl has fourteen kids
And she knows how to rare 'em
And they calls I Buttercup Joe.

Check that out!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: Morticia
Date: 23 May 07 - 06:13 PM

'Where it be to?' not too. Now I live in the rurality of Wiltshire, I hear this phrase used all the time. 'Where 'e be to, then?' has become part of my vocabulary.

As for the Glos. version of The Blackbird, it 'ave 'bout foive songs innit, dunnit?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 23 May 07 - 10:19 PM

Tradsinger

A most welcome twist (and probably closer to trad) to the thread ...I exchanged a tape of "Beach Boys" surf songs for....this one.

Sincerely,
Gargoyle

Still seeking six-degrees.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: greg stephens
Date: 24 May 07 - 08:27 AM

In the interest of completeness, here it is as on Exmoor (N. Devon) version from my childhood c 1955?

Yonder blackbrd where be ee
I know where 'ee be
ee be up yon wurzel tree
An' I be after ee
Now ee sees I
And I sees ee
And ee knows I be after ee
With a bloody gurt stick I'll 'ammer ee
Blackbird I'll 'ave ee.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,Terry McDonald
Date: 24 May 07 - 08:39 AM

Greg - that's very similar to the version I learned in 1950s Dorset, apart from an opening line of 'Where be yon blackbird to?' and the penultimate line which was 'With a bloody gurt stick I'll knock ee down.'


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: Big Jim from Jackson
Date: 24 May 07 - 11:56 AM

For the 'catters monitoring this thread and not quite sure what the heck it's all about: I stumbled across this and other songs by a group called the Wurzels. I play it on occasion on my radio show. If you want to hear music made by people having a great time, I suggest that you go to eBay and pick up a copy of some of their albums. I have the greatest fun listening to them and trying to "translate" their songs into "English"! I really enjoy The Wurzels, Shag Connors and the Carrot Crunchers, et al. Here in southeast Missouri their recordings are hard to come by.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST
Date: 05 Jun 07 - 04:25 AM

I heard another version, which goes:

I know where yon blackbird be, bugger
He be up yon wurzel tree, bugger
I sees 'e, bugger
'E sees me, bugger
Buggered if we don't sees each other, bugger
...Blackbird, I loves thee, bugger
    Please note that anonymous posting is no longer allowed at Mudcat. Use a consistent name when you post, or your messages risk being deleted.
    Thanks.
    -Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST
Date: 08 May 08 - 07:07 AM

This was, and likely still is, the favorite drinking (drunken) song of Alex Everitt, well-respected Mousehole jeweler and 80s Hawaii party animal and roommate. The more Alex drank, the less intelligible his delightful Cornwall "English" became. I committed these ridiculous lyrics to memory so I could sing/scream along when we were both in our cups. So very many brain cells departed in this grand fashion that it's a wonder these words remain! One to the blackbird then, boys!

Wur be that blackbird to
I know wur e be
E be in yon wurzel tree
'N uzn 're a'er e
E see I, 'n I see e
Wi'a bloody great stick
I'll 'ammer e
Blackbird, I'll 'ave e
Oggie oggie oggie!
Oy oy oy!
Oggie!
Oy!
Oggie!

Repeat with ever increasing volume and gusto until you are forced to stop singing it due to uncontrollable vomiting, being assaulted, being evicted, being arrested, or passing out.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,Edthefolkie
Date: 08 May 08 - 07:50 AM

Re Tradsinger's Gloucestershire version, I once heard a politically incorrect version of the final stanza to the tune of "Yankee Doodle":

Be I Berkshire, be I b*ggery
I comes up from Wareham
Where all the girls wear calico drawers
And I knows how to tear 'em

I seem to remember that this was during a drunken 2 hour lunch in a Young's pub in Croydon about 35 years ago. The Folk Process in action eh?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,Terry McDonald
Date: 08 May 08 - 08:40 AM

Down here in Dorset it's always been 'be I 'ampshire', not Berkshire, and as Wareham's a Dorset town it must be correct.........


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,Dale from Down Under
Date: 22 May 08 - 02:41 PM

"Hampshire" was the version I knew.

I came to this website (from New Zealand) while Googling for the phrase "calico drawers", as I wanted to see if there were any more verses to the one sung to me in 1969 on board ship going to the UK. Imagine a drunken Englishman singing this verse under the moonlight and the tropic stars, with the phosphorescence on the water, etc etc. Not quite as romantic as the occasion demanded, somehow!

Be I 'ampshire
Be I buggery
I comes up from Wareham
Where all the girls wears calico drawers
And I knows how to tear 'em.

I also saw the blackbird song printed on tourist tat in Dorset in the early 70s before the Wurzels recorded it, so it was around at the time.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,HOBOCORE
Date: 12 Oct 08 - 01:15 PM

I just heard this song two days ago on an old Chaos UK tape and came across this thread. I am having a hell of a time trying to find their lyrics to it. I have to say their version is great and thanks for turning me on to The Wurels!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,EcoVillen
Date: 13 Jan 11 - 11:57 PM

We used to sing a version in the Union Bar. It went:

Be I Berkshire, be I b*ggery
I comes up from Wareham
Where all the girls wear calico drawers
And I knows how to tear 'em

So rip my knickers away, away,
Rip my knickers away.
I don't care what becomes of me
As long as you play with my sea you enn tea.

So rip my knickers away, away,
Rip my knickers away.
Round the back
Round the front
Round the crack
Round the c**t
Rip my knickers away.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,Sam Dare
Date: 21 Nov 11 - 07:22 PM

This song is not origionally by the wurzels!

I remember my grand father singing a version of this to me when I was a boy many years before the wurzels brought out a version with slightly different words!

My grandfather was origionally from south Devon and this song is a traditional west country folk song/ nursery rhyme.

The origional song lyrics as far as I remember are:


Where be that blackbird to I know where he be.
He be in yonder tree and I be at'er he.
I be at'er he all day and he be at'er me.
Where be that blackbird to I know where he be.

There may have been other verses but this was the origional west country song long before the wurzels used it in there song!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,Patsy
Date: 22 Nov 11 - 02:43 AM

Bristol had also taken this song as their own. Adge Cutler had quite a following in Bristol back then we were considered to be Zummerzet rather than South Gloucestershire he mentioned verious landmarks like 'Barrow Gurney' in his songs so Bristol people took him to their hearts as did the song 'Whur be yon blackbird to' which took on a more Bristoleze dialect.

Whur be yon blackbird to,
I know whur ee be,
Ee be up yon wurzel tree,
And I be after 'ee',
Now ee sees I and I sees ee,
Bugger if I don't catchun,
With a gurt big stick Ill knockun down,
Blackbird Ill 'ave 'ee.'


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 22 Nov 11 - 04:58 AM

The Brits I learned it had an audience responce kicker of:
How's ya fadder? ALRIGHT
How's ya mudder? A SIGHT
How's ya sister? SHE'S TIGHT
How's ya brudder? HE MIGHT

Sincerely,
Gargoyle

They loved to get the Somerset Wurzel to tell a story about how they castrated piglets by ripping them off with their teeth.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: bubblyrat
Date: 22 Nov 11 - 06:49 AM

Perhaps one should mention here that the " Wurzel" referred to in not only the song , in all its various regional forms , but in the falsely-named "Wurzel Tree " and the eponymous musical ensemble , is ,in fact , a ground growing , turnip-like vegetable used for A) cattle and pig fodder and B) a growing international sporting activity . This amazingly versatile vegetable , properly the Mangold Wurzel or Mangel Wurzel ( Beeta Vulgaris Vulgaris ) ,is used in the sport of "Mangold Hurling " , which involves throwing or "hurling" the Wurzels as far as possible whilst standing with one's feet in a wicker basket ,preferably whilst under the influence of cider. Further details and the complex rules of the sport ,which has apparently become popular in Ohio , can be gleaned and garnered from www.mangoldhurling.co.uk . Enjoy !!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 22 Nov 11 - 07:43 AM

From (that highly acclaimed source of erudition) Wikipaedia
Wurzel is the German word for root and may refer to:

Würzel, an English musician
The Wurzels, an English band
Mangelwurzel, a root vegetable primarily used as cattle-fodder


I only knew to check for the German origin as the church choir is currently practising:
"Lo, how a rose upspring on tender root has grown" or:
"Es ist ein Ros entsprungen, aus einer Wurzel zart.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: bubblyrat
Date: 22 Nov 11 - 09:02 AM

Of course ! Adge Cutler and The Wurzels were , like Silly Wizard , very popular in Germany ! Well , probably .


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,Poolegirl
Date: 25 Sep 12 - 06:46 AM

When I was young in the 50s in Poole our family version went

Whur be thic blackbird to
I know where un be
'Er's in thic wurzle bush
A-making eyes at me


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: G-Force
Date: 25 Sep 12 - 09:29 AM

The song was quoted by Bob Copper in his book 'Songs and Summer Breezes', which is all stuff he collected for the BBC back in the 1950's, so predates Adge Cutler & The Wurzels at least.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,james rogers
Date: 09 Jun 13 - 08:34 AM

This song may have a rather grisly background -- dating back six centuries or so. The blackbird referred to is said to be a black-cloaked Catholic priest hiding in a priest's hole. If Henry's Protestants find him, they will burn him alive. Of course, it's just a noisy pub song now. But some of the menace remained when I first heard the Gloucestershire version performed about sixty years ago. The word bugger may have been used literally.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST
Date: 09 Jun 13 - 01:26 PM

I'm very dubious about claims that the song "is said to be .." etc. Who says and what is the evidence? I suspect that it is a relatively modern song. We can trace it back to the 50s, thanks to Bob Copper but are there any earlier versions. It's not the sort of thing that "serious" folksong collectors would have noted (but they should have done).

Tradsinger


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,Moonraker
Date: 30 Jun 15 - 02:55 PM

It was regularly sung in a pub in Liddington on Saturday nights throughout the 1970 's. Be I Basset(Wotton Basset) be I buggery. I comes up from Wareham I got a wife with calico drawers and I knows how to tear em. The fly the fly the fly be on the turnip etc.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,MartinU
Date: 09 Mar 16 - 10:30 AM

Some time in the early 70s I bought an old reel-to-reel tape recorder and somewhere on the tape was this song, though the lyrics were slightly different:

Where be that blackbird be?
Where be that blackbird be?
'E be up yon wurzel tree
And Oi be aafter 'e.
'E sees me, and Oi sees 'e.
Underneath yon wurzel tree
With bloody big stick Oi wallop 'e
Blackbird, I'll 'ave' e'.

Sung in an exaggerated fake-Devon "Wurzels" accent.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,Mike Yates
Date: 09 Mar 16 - 10:59 AM

A version of this song, collected in the 1960's from the Cantwell Family of Standlake in Oxfordshire, can be heard on the Musical Traditions CD "I Wish There Was No Prisons" (MTCD372).


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST
Date: 24 Sep 16 - 04:03 AM

I heard a version from a bloke from Lowerstoft.

I see the blackbird fly
I know where he be
He be up yon olly tree

He see I and
I see he
He know I be after E


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,Paul Carling
Date: 02 Jun 18 - 05:55 PM

As a boy in Somerset in the 1950s I learnt the following.

Whur be thik blackbird be? I know whur e be. E be up thik Wurzel tree and I be ar'er e. E sees I and I sees e, and he knows I be ar'er e. Wi' a bloody girt stick I'll knock e down, blackbird I hav e.

'Thik' is pronounced with a short 'th'

As country folk often netted blackbirds and thrushes for food up to the 1st war (and sometime afterwards I guess), it is possible they were also knocked down. Rook breast meat was also used in pies - I came across somebody cooking rook pie in the English Lake District in the 1970s. Hence the reference to blackbird pie in some versions.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Whur be yon blackbird too?'
From: GUEST,Paddy, in Coningsby.
Date: 05 Oct 18 - 03:53 PM

I was brought up near Stroud, Gloucestershire. In the 60's and early 70's, I remember this song being sung in many of the local pubs. During the annual pub outing (usually to the South Coast), it was customary to stop at two or three pubs on the way home (as well as drinking on the bus). It seemed that each village had a version of the song, with verses unfamiliar to us. The chorus was invariably something like:

'I spied 'e, 'e spied I, called I a bugger and a liar. When I find yon Blackbird's nest, I'll set the bugger on fire'.
I've always thought that the many variations of the song would merit a book.

The 'Where....to?' versions would surely have their origins in Devon, where 'where....to?' Is a common usage. We didn't use it in Gloucestershire.


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