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Help! Twa Corbies

DigiTrad:
SAYS THE BLACKBIRD TO THE CROW
THE THREE CROWS (BILLY MACGEE MACGORE)
THE THREE RAVENS
THE THREE RAVENS (5)
THE TWA CORBIES (7)
THOMAS O YONDERDALE
THREE CRAWS
TWA CORBIES
TWA CORBIES 2
TWA CRAWS SAT ON A STANE


Related threads:
Origins: Twa Corbies / Three Ravens / etc. (66)
Twa Corbies (46)
3 Ravens (Ravenscroft) what's it about? (72)
Three Black Crows (21)
Twa Corbies - transl. into Engl, please (63)
Lyr Req: Three Ravens, newer version? (22)
Lyr Req: The Twa Corbies (13)
Mudcatter's CD's Part 2 (16)
Lyr Req: Old Black Crow (6)
Info needed for 'Two Ravens' (13)
origins of 'Two Ravens' (4)
Lyr Req: Scot Gaelic Song - The Two Crows? (7)
Lyr/Chords Req: The Twa Corbies (Old Blind Dogs) (5)
Lyr Req: Three Black Birds (8)


GUEST,Jordan jordannku@yahoo.com 01 Mar 01 - 08:58 PM
Sorcha 01 Mar 01 - 09:20 PM
McGrath of Harlow 01 Mar 01 - 10:27 PM
Bill D 01 Mar 01 - 10:37 PM
Noreen 01 Mar 01 - 10:39 PM
Dunc 02 Mar 01 - 09:57 AM
GUEST,Ewan McVicar 03 Mar 01 - 05:40 AM
GUEST,Ewan McVicar 03 Mar 01 - 05:45 AM
Jeri 03 Mar 01 - 09:13 AM
GUEST,JohnB 03 Mar 01 - 09:36 AM
Peg 03 Mar 01 - 09:47 AM
Anglo 03 Mar 01 - 11:11 PM
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Subject: Help! Twa Corbies
From: GUEST,Jordan jordannku@yahoo.com
Date: 01 Mar 01 - 08:58 PM

Does anyone know where I can find information about the ballad Twa Corbies? I'm working on an assignment for a class at Northern Kentucky University and any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks


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Subject: RE: Help! Twa Corbies
From: Sorcha
Date: 01 Mar 01 - 09:20 PM

click. This is from The Contemplator's site. 3 Ravens is basically the same song as Twa Corbies....


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Subject: RE: Help! Twa Corbies
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 01 Mar 01 - 10:27 PM

The essential thing is that Twa Corbies is Scottish and cynical, Three Ravens is English and more naive. I used to prefer the cynical version, but, as Bob Dylan puts it, "I was older then, I'm so much younger now", and I think I find the naive way of seeing things more essentially true. But you pays your money and you takes your choice.

Anyway, here is a thread about the songs on the Mudcat

There are lots more - just type Twa Corbies into the supersearch (Digitrad and Forum search up towards the top of the index page on the left) and you get leads to all kinds of discussion about them.

You might need to be a registered member for that, I'm not sure. But that only takes about one minute to do, and unlike registering with lots of things on the net it doesn't mean you get unwanted emails from people trying to con you.


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Subject: RE: Help! Twa Corbies
From: Bill D
Date: 01 Mar 01 - 10:37 PM

"information' is such a broad term...what do you already know? Why this ballad? For serious help, tell us more. (I have been singing it for 30 years)....It doesn't have a lot of versions or 'history' to it, but you can get a lot of opinion. Do you have F.J. Child in your library?


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Subject: RE: Help! Twa Corbies
From: Noreen
Date: 01 Mar 01 - 10:39 PM

Two threads here:Twa corbies on a tree. Words??

and

Twa Corbies


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE TWA CORBIES (Peter MacNab)
From: Dunc
Date: 02 Mar 01 - 09:57 AM

A variation on the same theme.
This version was written by Peter MacNab after hearing a report that due to the lack of trees in the islands of Orkney, British Telecom (BT) were getting masses of call outs to repair telephone lines damaged by birds trying to build nests on the top of telegraph poles. Electricity lines were being damaged in the same way.

THE TWA CORBIES

An Orkney man was on the phone
When he spied twa corbies ootside his home
The tain untae the tuther did say
Lets cut this auld man off the day

Oh in ahint yon auld fell dyke
Someone has dumped a smashed up bike
There's a broken chain and lots o' spokes
And we'll sort them oot in just twa croaks

That line of poles coming frae his hoose
Thats where he gets his electric juice
We'll tak a spoke - drop it on the wire
Nae fuse tae light - ye just retire

And see that other line of poles
That's waur he gets his telephone calls
We'll tak the chain - drop it o'er there
And he'll get nae calls for a month or mair

And when that's done we will be blessed
Wi' a place waur we can build oor nest
Nae electric shocks shootin' up oor legs
Nae chance o' laying hard boiled eggs

This island - it has nae trees
So we nest up poles high in the breeze
I could move doon south - maybe tae Dundee
But I'd miss ma money frae BT.
^^


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Subject: RE: Help! Twa Corbies
From: GUEST,Ewan McVicar
Date: 03 Mar 01 - 05:40 AM

Old home week on the Mudcat for me. First John McGeachy Martyn, now my teacher Morris Blythman. I often heard Morris tell how on a visit to Brittany in the 1950s he heard the Breton song tune which he then put to the Scots Twa Corbies lyric, now sung and recorded so often.


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Subject: RE: Help! Twa Corbies
From: GUEST,Ewan McVicar
Date: 03 Mar 01 - 05:45 AM

I thought I'd check the DigiTrad file. The tune connection clickie there plays you Three Ravens rather than Twa Corbies - a bird too many. And Norrie Buchan names the tune as Al Alarc'h rather than what's given in the database.


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Subject: RE: Help! Twa Corbies
From: Jeri
Date: 03 Mar 01 - 09:13 AM

You're right, Ewan - the tune for TWA CORBIES 2 isn't the right one.

I posted a MidiText version of it in the Twa Corbies thread Noreen linked to above, and a fixed ABC version a little further down the thread. For whatever reason, neither seems to have been harvested. As Malcolm Douglas pointed out in that thread, the tune is here - given for the Breton Liberation Song. The timing is different than what I'm used to hearing for Twa Corbies.


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Subject: RE: Help! Twa Corbies
From: GUEST,JohnB
Date: 03 Mar 01 - 09:36 AM

There is also the Two Crows Sat on a Tree version. I can't give you the tune, i generally mak eit up as I go along from memory, but here are the words.
Recited rather than sung, (first time through)
There were Three Crows sat on a tree and they were black as black could be. ALL SING.
(So then everone sings)
There were Three Crows sat on a tree and they were black as black could be, and they were black as black could be, and they were black as black could be. (The last time in rip roaring harmony)
It then continues in the same responsitory fashion.
One old crow said to his mate, what have we this fine day to eat, ALL SING.
Down behind yon wall of stone, there lies an old knight (sometimes Horse instead of Knight) newly slain. AS
You his on his big breast bone and I'll pike out his bonny blue Een (Eye). AS
One old Crow said to the other, by christ this is a tough old bugger. AS
My mind has just gone blank and I can't remeber any more, maybe that is it. Not really sure of the origin either.
JohnB
I think I put line breaks in the right place. If I didn't, let me know, and I'll fix them. --JoeClone


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Subject: RE: Help! Twa Corbies
From: Peg
Date: 03 Mar 01 - 09:47 AM

Maddy Prior does an interesting arrangement of it on her album "Year" based on some old (Cornish? Northumbrian??) dance tune...


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Subject: RE: Help! Twa Corbies
From: Anglo
Date: 03 Mar 01 - 11:11 PM

Maddy uses the Breton tune Ewan mentions above. I think the first place it was published was Norman Buchan's 101 Scottish Songs (1962).


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