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Lyr Req: Betsy Baker

GUEST,Bobby Bob, Ellan Vannin 01 Nov 00 - 06:06 PM
GUEST,bigJ 01 Nov 00 - 08:20 PM
GUEST,Bruce O. 01 Nov 00 - 08:20 PM
GUEST,marc 02 Nov 00 - 07:38 AM
GUEST,Bruce O. 02 Nov 00 - 03:40 PM
GUEST,bigJ 02 Nov 00 - 05:51 PM
GUEST,Bruce O. 02 Nov 00 - 09:50 PM
GUEST,Bobby Bob, Ellan Vannin 05 Nov 00 - 07:28 AM
Jim Dixon 12 Aug 02 - 01:14 AM
GUEST 12 Aug 02 - 02:05 AM
RoyH (Burl) 12 Aug 02 - 03:10 PM
RoyH (Burl) 12 Aug 02 - 03:13 PM
Jim Dixon 10 Nov 02 - 02:32 PM
GUEST,Q 10 Nov 02 - 03:28 PM
Jim Dixon 10 Nov 02 - 04:11 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 10 Nov 02 - 06:11 PM
GUEST,Richie 10 Nov 02 - 07:07 PM
GUEST,Michael O 07 Sep 10 - 09:21 PM
Jim Dixon 10 Sep 10 - 10:51 AM
Steve Gardham 10 Sep 10 - 03:09 PM
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Subject: Betsy Baker
From: GUEST,Bobby Bob, Ellan Vannin
Date: 01 Nov 00 - 06:06 PM

There's a snippet of a song, as best I can read, amongst some papers from the late 19th century. The song must have an English background, but it's not in the database.

The doctor came and sniffed the cane
His face as long as a Quaker.
He said, "Young man, what is your pain?"
Said I, "Sir, Betsy Baker!"

followed by a gap, before finishing off -

He would as soon have killed me.

Any information gratefully received.

Lhieuish,

Bobby Bob.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Betsy Baker
From: GUEST,bigJ
Date: 01 Nov 00 - 08:20 PM

Bob, if you go here (click) you'll find one of quite a few versions.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Betsy Baker
From: GUEST,Bruce O.
Date: 01 Nov 00 - 08:20 PM

Put 'Betsy Baker' in the Browse box on the Bodley Ballads website (in Mudcat's Links) and you'll turn up several copies. It's earlier than the late 19th century.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Betsy Baker
From: GUEST,marc
Date: 02 Nov 00 - 07:38 AM

Isn't Betsy Baker the song that became Yankee Doodle?


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Subject: Tune Add: BETSY BAKER
From: GUEST,Bruce O.
Date: 02 Nov 00 - 03:40 PM

In 'The Universal Songster', II, p. 332, 1826, "Betsy Baker" is attributed Hudson, and the tune direction is given as "Head Man at Mrs. Grundy's", which I don't know. There is an incomplete copy of the song with music, both from a manuscript, in Randolph's 'Ozark Folksongs' I, #117, Version A. Another with music is said in Steve Roud's folk song index to be in Roy Palmer's 'Love is Pleasing'.

I've never seen it connected to "Yankee Doodle", but so much published about "Yankee Doodle" is pure crap that I wouldn't be surprised about much of anything said in connection with it. The tune below doesn't sound much like "Yankee Doodle" to me, and I think "Yankee Doodle" is about half of a century older than "Betsy Baker".

X:1
T:Betsy Baker
S:Ozark Folksongs, I, #117, Version A
Q:1/4=160
L:1/8
M:2/4
K:D
d|A F F D|C E E G|F D F A|d2d d|\
A F F D|C E E A|d c B ^A|B2B c|\
d e f d|c d e3/2 c/|d e f d|(cd) .e c|\
d e f d|c3/2 d/ e3/2 f/|d c B A|d2 d d|\
A F F D|C E E G|F D A3/2 F/|D2D||]


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Betsy Baker
From: GUEST,bigJ
Date: 02 Nov 00 - 05:51 PM

In the 'Lyricist and Composers' list in the book 'Sing Us One of the Old Songs', Michael Kilgarriff cites Thomas Hudson 1791-1844 as having 'published twelve song collections between 1818 and 1831', and includes in the list of songs 'Betsey (sic) Baker'. I'm not entirely convinced that he is the composer.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Betsy Baker
From: GUEST,Bruce O.
Date: 02 Nov 00 - 09:50 PM

According to some sparse notes I made about 30 years ago, based on the collection of Thomas Hudson's little songbooks at the University of Wisconsin, there were 13 books (of about a dozen songs each) of the which the last was undated, and the 12th was of 1831.

At any rate "Betsy Baker" is in his 'Comic Songs by Thomas Hudson: Fifth Collection', 1824. My notes don't indicate whether he cited a tune for it. He usually didn't, but in the same collection is "Jack Robinson" to the tune of "The College Hornpipe".

In the 13th book is a reworked version of "The Cruel Mother" which Hudson called "The Country Tragedy" to be sung to "Wellady".

There are a 3 or 4 of his early songbooks in the Library of Congress, but I haven't yet relocated my notes on them. Hudson was a greengrocer by trade and published and sold his songbooks from his grocery shop in London.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Betsy Baker
From: GUEST,Bobby Bob, Ellan Vannin
Date: 05 Nov 00 - 07:28 AM

I haven't had an opportunity to check replies up to now, so I'd like to give a belated thanks for all the information.

The snippet appears in a collection of tunes, some with snippets of lyrics attached, that was made between about 1893 and 1899, hence my 19th century reference. It was probably collected from a source quite well on in years, so probably reflects a song popular in that person's youth, and may explain the gap where the synapses didn't link.

Thanks once again - gura mie eu reesht.

Bobby Bob


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Subject: Lyr Add: CHEERILY MAN
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 12 Aug 02 - 01:14 AM

Here's a sea chantey that mentions Betsy Baker -- and rhymes her with "Quaker." Coincidence? Lyrics copied from http://www.acronet.net/~robokopp/shanty/cheerily.htm
I have put the refrain in italics.

CHEERILY MAN

O Nancy Dawson, Hio! Cheer'ly man.
She's got a notion, Hio-o! Cheer'ly man.
For our old bo'sun, Hio! Cheer'ly man, O!
Hauley, Hio-o! Cheer'ly man.


O Betsy Baker, Hio! Cheer'ly man.
Lived in Long Acre, Hio-o! Cheer'ly man.
Married a Quaker, Hio! Cheer'ly man, O!
Hauley, Hio-o! Cheer'ly man.


[Similarly:]
O Sally Rackett, Hio!
Pawned my best jacket, Hio-o!
And kept the ticket, Hio!

O the ladies of town, Hio!
All soft as down, Hio-o!
In their best gown, Hio!

O Polly Hawkins, Hio!
With her white stocking, Hio-o!
Beats all at talking, Hio!

O Kitty Carson, Hio!
Jilted the parson, Hio-o!
Married a mason, Hio!

O haughty cocks, Hio!
O split the blocks, Hio-o!
O stretch her luff, Hio!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Betsy Baker
From: GUEST
Date: 12 Aug 02 - 02:05 AM

Hugill, 'Shanties from the 7 Seas' also has a similar versions, and yours has verses from ones on p. 313 and p 315.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Betsy Baker
From: RoyH (Burl)
Date: 12 Aug 02 - 03:10 PM

I wonder if this is the song you want. I learned it many years ago from a member of the London Critics group. Regrettably I can't remember his name. The song has elements of music hall in it I think. It may well have started there. There is very old slang in the lyric - 'ramping mad', and 'Gammoned', meaning persuaded, or sweet-talke, or seduced into something. A gentle song about a really shy lover. I'm sorry I don'tknow how to send the tune. You could ask David Jones. I gave him these words some while ago. Happy singing.

O Covent Garden, fare thee well
Goodbye to old Long Acre
I never knew what love could do
'Til I met Betsy Baker.

In church I met her dressed so neat
One Sunday in hot weather
I know my heart with love did beat
We sang the psalms together

When church was out away she walked
But I did overtake her
Determined I would not be baulked
I spoke to Betsy Baker

She blushed and seemed too shy to talk
But I resolved to make her
Says I "My dear, will you talk a walk?"
"I shan't" said Betsy Baker

She soon became aquainted with
A ramping mad play actor
He gammoned her to run away
I lost my Betsy Baker

My mother said twould ease my mind
Thus quickly to forsake her
But I think all day and I dream all night
About my Betsy Baker.


--- Line breaks <br> added ---
---Jeff (PA)---


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Betsy Baker
From: RoyH (Burl)
Date: 12 Aug 02 - 03:13 PM

Ihope you can read the above Bobby. I don't know how to do line breaks. Just go through it slowly, you'll see how it scans. Burl


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Subject: Lyr Add: BETSY BAKER
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 10 Nov 02 - 02:32 PM

Transcribed by me from the Bodleian Library Broadside Ballads Catalogue: Harding B 11(257)

BETSY BAKER
[Printed in London in 1828 or 1829.]

From noise and bustle far away,
Hard work my time employing,
How happily did I pass each day,
Content and health enjoying.
The birds did sing and so did I,
As I trudg'd o'er each acre.
I never knew what 'twas to sigh
Till I saw Betsy Baker.

At church I met her dressed so neat,
One Sunday in hot weather.
With love I found my heart did beat,
As we sung psalms together.
So piously she hung her head,
The while her voice did shake, ah!
I thought if ever I did wed,
'Twould be with Betsy Baker.

From her side I could not budge,
And sure I thought no harm on't.
My elbow then she gave a nudge,
And bade me mind the sarment. (=sermon?)
When church was over, out she walked,
But I did overtake her.
Determined I would not be baulked,
I spoke to Betsy Baker.

Her manners were genteel and cool,
I found, on conversation.
She'd just come from boarding school,
And finished her education.
But love made me speak out quite free.
Says I, "I've many an acre.
Will you give me your company?"
"I shan't," says Betsy Baker.

All my entreaties she did slight,
And I was forced to leave her.
I got no sleep all that there night,
For love had brought a fever.
The doctor came. He smelt his cane
With long face like a Quaker.
Said he, "Young man, pray, where's thy pain?"
Says I, "Sir, Betsy Baker."

Because I was not bad enough,
He bolused and he pilled me,
And, if I'd taken all his stuff,
I think he must ha' killed me.
I put an end to all the strife
'Twixt him and the undertaker,
And what d'ye think 'twas saved my life?
Why, thoughts of Betsy Baker.

I then again to Betsy went,
Once more with love attacked her,
But mean time she got acquainted
Wi' a ramping mad-play actor.
If she would have him, he did say,
A lady he would make her.
He gammoned her to run away,
And I lost Betsy Baker.

I fretted very much to find
My hopes of love so undone,
And mother thought 'twould ease my mind
If I came up to London.
But though I strive another way,
My thoughts will ne'er forsake her.
I dream all night, and think all day
Of cruel Betsy Baker.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Betsy Baker
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 10 Nov 02 - 03:28 PM

Thread creep. The name Baker always brings to my mind the "Dutch Girl" pictured on cans of Baker's chocolate for many years. The company was founded in 1765 in Massachusetts by Dr Baker, a Quaker, and an Irish chocolate maker, John Hannon. In 1927. General Foods bought the company and in turn was merged with Kraft in 1989.
Any connection of the shanty with Baker the Quaker and chocolate maker is probably coincidental; there is no connection to the English song.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Betsy Baker
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 10 Nov 02 - 04:11 PM

The association of chocolate with Quakers is not a coincidence. See Quakerinfo.com.


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Subject: Tune Add: BETSY BAKER
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 10 Nov 02 - 06:11 PM

Ozark Folksongs Randolph, Vol 1, # 117, "Betsy Baker",p.423.

"The Harvard Library has a chapbook copy printed in Glasgow, Scotland, in 1829. The song was popular in both England and America in the 40's and 50's and appears in several American songbooks. For full references see Mackenzie (Ballads and Sea Songs from Nova Scotia, 1928, 353-354)."


In my opinion the tune is deffinately NOT Yankee Doodle - however the confusion could come about in reards to names, because it does have a strong semblance in the opening to an American Revolution Song "I Sum I Am a Yankee Lad"


X:1
T:BETSY BAKER
M:2/4
L:1/8
K:D

d aFFD CEEG FDFa d2dd aFFD CEEa dcb^a b2bc defd cde>c defd (cd)e>c defd c>de>f dcba d2dd aFFD CEEG Fda>f D2D


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Subject: Lyr Add: BETSEY BAKER and THE QUILTING PARTY
From: GUEST,Richie
Date: 10 Nov 02 - 07:07 PM

Jim- the same version is in American Memory:

Betsey Baker

From noise and bustle far away,
Hard work my time employing;
How happily I pass'd each day,
Content and health enjoying.
The birds did sing, and so did I,
As I tradg'd o'er each acre,
I never knew what 'twas to sigh,
Till I saw Betsey Baker!

Li too rol, &c.

At church I met her dress'd so neat,
One Sunday in hot weather,
With love I found my heart did beat,
As we sung psalms together;
So piously she hung her head
The while her voice did shake, ah!
I thought if ever I did wed
'Twould be with Betsey Baker.

Li too rol, &c.

Now from her side I could not budge,
I'm sure I thought no harm on't,
My elbow then she gave a nudge,
And bid me mind the sarmont;
When church was over out she walk'd,
But I did overtake her,
Determined I would not be baulk'd--
I spoke to Betsey Baker.

Li too rol, &c.

Her manners were genteel and cool,
I found on conversation;
She'd just come from a boarding school
With a finish'd education.
But love made me speak out quite free--
Says I, I've many an acre,
Will you grant me your company--
I shan't! said Betsey Baker.

Also from American Memory there is a version that says the tune of Betsy Baker was used for the "Quilting Party:"

Betsy Baker/THE QUILTING PARTY

As SUNG BY R. H. RACEY. -- AIR: Belsy Baker.

It was down at Major Parson's house,
The gals they had a quilting,
Just for to show their handsome looks,
And have a little jilting.
There was Deacon Parson's daughter Sal,
Squire Wheeler's daughter Mary,
And General Carter's youngest gal
That looked just like a Fairy.

There was Lucy White and Martha Brown,
And Jackson's daughter Betty,
Femimo Pinkhorn, Prudence Short,
And Major Downing's Hetty.
But if there was a handsome gal
That would make a feller's heart right,
I guess it was, by all accounts,
Miss Carolina Cartright.

O, as they were a whirling plate,
And playing hunt the slipper,
Jerusha Parson's went to git
Some cider in the dipper;
But just as she had left the room,
And got into the entry
She gave a scream and stood stock-still,
Just like a frozen sentry.

We all run out, and there, I swow,
Both huggin' like creation:
Miss Cartright and Sam Jones we saw
A kissing like a tarnation.
O, such a laugh as we sat up,
You never heerd a finer.
Says I, I reckon kissing's cheap,
Don't you Miss Carolina?

You ought to see Miss Cartright blush,
Just as if she'd fainted;
She said she had the toothache,
And in Samuel's arms had fainted.
Now, all young gals, I'll say to you:
When you go to a quilt-make,
Don't let the fellers hug and kiss,
Unless you've got the toothache.

Both songs seem to have the cadence of "Yankee Doodle." There's another reference to a quilting party but it's a different song:
"Aunt Dinah's Quilting Party" that has become a bluegrass song.

-Richie


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Betsy Baker
From: GUEST,Michael O
Date: 07 Sep 10 - 09:21 PM

Can someone confirm the original tune or sheet music for this song?


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Subject: Lyr Add: TH' MON AT MESTER GRUNDY'S
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 10 Sep 10 - 10:51 AM

This must be the song that is referred to as "Head Man at Mrs. Grundy's." Its tune was used for BETSY BAKER. Unfortunately, I still don't have the tune.

Lyrics from Ashburner's New Vocal and Poetic Repository, (Ulverston: George Ashburner, 1807), page 201:


MON AT MESTER GRUNDY'S.

1. Good law, how things are alter'd now!
I'm grown as fine as fippence;
But when I'd use to follow th' plough,
I ne'er could mester thrippence!
But now, why who's so spruce as I,
When going to church o' Sundays?
I'm not poor Will o' th' yate, by guy!
But th' mon at Mester Grundy's.

2. I'd use to stride about i' clogs,
As thick as sides o' bacon;
But now my clogs, as well as hogs,
I've totally forsaken:
And little Peg, I lik'd so well,
And walk'd so with o' Sundays,
I've left, and now 'tis cook-maid Nell,
And th' mon at Mester Grundy's.

3. One day I met my cousin Ralph,
Says he, "How art ta, Willy?"
"Begone," says I, "thou clumsy oaf,
And do not be so silly."
"Why does t' forget since constant we
To market trudg'd o' Mundays?"
Says I, "Good lad, don't talk to me.
I'm th' mon at Mester Grundy's."

4. "Gadzooks!" says Ralph. "Who art ta now?
I thowt no harm i' speaking.
I've seen th' day thou wert at plough
Was glad my hand t' be shaking;
But now, ecod, thou struts about,
So very fine o' Sundays."
"Why aye," says I. "You clod, get out!
I'm th' mon at Mester Grundy's."

5. On nice thick porrage and sweet milk,
At whoam I liv'd i' clover;
And wish'd such feasting, while I liv'd,
No never might be over:
But, zounds, did yo' but see me now,
Sat down to dine o' Sundays,
Ecod, you'd stare like ony thing,
At th' mon at Mester Grundy's.

6. Now I'm advan'd fro' th' tail o' th' plough
Like many a peer o' th' nation,
I finds 'tis easy knowing how
T' forget one's former station:
Who knows but I may strut a 'squire,
Wi' powder'd wig o' Sundays,
Though now content to be no higher,
Than th' mon at Mester Grundy's.


The Bodleian Library has several copies of the broadside. As the songs are in the Lancashire(?) dialect, the spelling of the title varies somewhat:

MON AT MESTER GRUNDY'S ("Good law how things altered now ...")
MON AT MR. GRUNDY'S ("Good law a things are autert na ...")
TH' MON AT MESTER GRUNDY'S ("Good law, how things are alter'd now ...")
TH' MON AT MR. GRUNDYS ("Good law, how things are alter'd now ...")
THE MON AT MESTER GRUNDY'S ("Good law! how things are alter'd now ...")


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Betsy Baker
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 10 Sep 10 - 03:09 PM

Be careful.
there is at least one other music hall song called Betsy Baker.
A version I recorded has the line 'Into Betsy Baker's house we all....
something about a christening if I remember right.


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