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Lyr Add: Gathering of the Clan


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GUEST,Roll&Go-C 05 Feb 01 - 01:54 PM
GUEST,Bruce O. 05 Feb 01 - 09:35 PM
GUEST,Bruce O. 05 Feb 01 - 10:43 PM
GUEST,Murray on Salt Spring 06 Feb 01 - 01:13 AM
GUEST,Roll&Go-C 06 Feb 01 - 08:21 AM
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Subject: Gathering of the Clan
From: GUEST,Roll&Go-C
Date: 05 Feb 01 - 01:54 PM

I'm impressed with the multitude of verses for this bawdy old song in your data base. Some favorite verses I don't see are:

Hairy Mary, she was there,
She had us all in fits,
Swinging from the chandelier
And bouncing off her tits...

The village bailiff he was there,
It really was a farce,
We took his chain of office
And we shoved it up his arse...

Old Matt McGinnis
Was stamping on his hat,
Forty acres of his corn,
Fairly fuck-ed flat.

I'm sure there's more out there; I learned my verses from
Dennis Puleston of Brookhaven, Long Island, who must be
in his eighties by now.

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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gathering of the Clan
From: GUEST,Bruce O.
Date: 05 Feb 01 - 09:35 PM

I am certain that the day will never come when one can say that the last verse for "The Ball of Kirriemuir" has been written. The song was supposedly written about 1875, but I've never seen an early text of it.

Meanwhile, I've added an ABC of the 17th century tune of "Bonny Jean of Aberdeen" (the Scottish Kirriemuir tune) to the 3 later versions in file S1.HTM on my website. [Scarce Songs 1 contains the very rare early 18th text of "Bonny Jean of Aberdeen", but this is apparently a polite reworking of a lost earlier version of the song.] Tunes from the Guthrie MS are always rather wild, and I'm not certain the 17th century tune should even be called a version of the same tune.

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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gathering of the Clan
From: GUEST,Bruce O.
Date: 05 Feb 01 - 10:43 PM

Another note

Note that the model for "The Ball of Kiriemuir" is "The West-Country Jigg" in the Scarce Songs 1 file on my website. It's very close to 200 years earlier. The Scots tune used for it isn't the same one used for "The Ball of Kirriemuir", however.

I ran into a song, "Hamilton Races", c 1770, in a Scots manuscript that on the whole was quite polite, but which had several verses that would fit nicely in "The Ball of Kirriemuir". The song commented on many people and their doings both at the races and at ball held after them. The tune "Hamilton Races" is in McGlashan's 'Reels', c 1781 and 1786, and I regret that I did not copy it when I had the chance.

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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gathering of the Clan
From: GUEST,Murray on Salt Spring
Date: 06 Feb 01 - 01:13 AM

Roll&Go: I'm not surprised you didn't find the exact words in the DT, but variants of them are either there or in the Forum here [search -- I can't do the blue clicky thing] -- e.g. the farmer one is in the version of James Barke

Big Rab the fermer cursed and swore,
An' then he roared and grat;
For his forty acre corn field
Was nearly fuckit flat.

That's in the Barke-Smith-Ferguson "Merry Muses". I got a slightly different version in Vancouver many years ago [main differs "spat an' grat", "fairly fuckit flat" -- which has a nice alliteration]. The Hairy Mary verse is really the same as one I heard in Scotland, but whose actor varies widely from place to place:

The District Nurse and she was there,
She kept us a' in fits,
Jumpin' aff the mantelpiece
An' landin' on her tits.

Your bailiff verse is new to me, I think. In Scots we'd call him a bailie. -- There's seemingly no end to the folk who are portrayed as being at the Ball [please don't call it "The Gathering of the Clans"]. The first extant text of this can be dated about 1890 maybe, which gives sufficient time for a notorious orgy of a decade before to have made it into print, however surreptitious.

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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gathering of the Clan
From: GUEST,Roll&Go-C
Date: 06 Feb 01 - 08:21 AM

Thanks for the comments. I noted a lot of variations as I sifted through the Forum. Clearly, if anyone sang all these verses there wouldn't be any energy left for any doin'. Another slight varient I had was:

The village idiot he was there,
Up to his same old trick,
Pulling his foreskin over his head
And whistling through his prick!

Seems more musically feasible than some of the other varients.

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