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Lyr Add: Recruited Collier

DigiTrad:
RECRUITED COLLIER


Related threads:
Lyr Add: The Recruited Collier's Tale (4)
Chord Req: The Recruited Collier (Kate Rusby) (15)
meaning? 'My father would have paid the smart' (9)


NSC 12 Dec 00 - 05:54 PM
GUEST,NSC 17 Sep 01 - 06:45 AM
bill\sables 17 Sep 01 - 07:01 AM
GUEST,NSC 17 Sep 01 - 07:37 AM
GUEST,treaties1 17 Sep 01 - 08:43 AM
Liz the Squeak 17 Sep 01 - 10:22 AM
Malcolm Douglas 17 Sep 01 - 10:59 AM
GUEST,NSC 17 Sep 01 - 06:38 PM
GUEST,Genie 18 Sep 01 - 03:02 AM
Malcolm Douglas 18 Sep 03 - 04:23 PM
GUEST,Nerd 21 Sep 03 - 03:05 AM
Folkiedave 21 Sep 03 - 05:17 AM
Keith A of Hertford 21 Sep 03 - 03:21 PM
Nerd 22 Sep 03 - 02:21 AM
greg stephens 22 Sep 03 - 05:54 AM
greg stephens 22 Sep 03 - 05:58 AM
Malcolm Douglas 22 Sep 03 - 10:04 AM
Malcolm Douglas 22 Sep 03 - 12:41 PM
Nerd 22 Sep 03 - 02:53 PM
Malcolm Douglas 22 Sep 03 - 04:16 PM
greg stephens 22 Sep 03 - 08:16 PM
Nerd 24 Sep 03 - 02:56 PM
greg stephens 24 Sep 03 - 03:23 PM
Desert Dancer 21 Feb 05 - 11:30 AM
Nerd 22 Feb 05 - 12:35 AM
GUEST,Spanish partisan 07 Nov 05 - 05:48 PM
Matthew Edwards 02 Nov 08 - 01:34 PM
The Sandman 02 Nov 08 - 01:50 PM
Jim Carroll 02 Nov 08 - 03:02 PM
Fred McCormick 02 Nov 08 - 03:34 PM
Phil Edwards 02 Nov 08 - 03:54 PM
Phil Edwards 02 Nov 08 - 04:25 PM
Fred McCormick 03 Nov 08 - 04:46 AM
The Sandman 03 Nov 08 - 08:11 AM
GUEST,Keith Gregson 02 Feb 09 - 03:28 PM
Richard Mellish 13 Dec 09 - 04:23 PM
Tim Chesterton 13 Sep 10 - 09:36 PM
Tim Chesterton 13 Sep 10 - 10:34 PM
Artful Codger 14 Sep 10 - 03:40 AM
Tim Chesterton 14 Sep 10 - 09:40 AM
Artful Codger 22 Apr 11 - 01:16 PM
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Steve Howlett 22 Apr 17 - 06:11 AM
GUEST,jim bainbridge 04 Jun 17 - 06:44 AM
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The Sandman 04 Jun 17 - 02:56 PM
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Subject: Lyric adjustment - Recruited Collier ^^
From: NSC
Date: 12 Dec 00 - 05:54 PM

I note that there is a version of this song in the DT as recorded by Dick Gaughan. I also believe other people have recorded this song in the same way. i cannot remember my source excepting that it was sung when i got it in Geordie (North East) dialect. The late Mike Donohue used to make a great job of this song.

What's the matter with you me lass,
And where's your dashing Jimmy,
The soldier lads have picked him up
And sent him far far from me.
Last pay day he come into town,
And them red coated fellows,
Enticed him in and med him drunk,
And he'd be better gone to the gallows.

The very sight o' his cockade,
It sets us all a crying,
And me aa nearly fainted twice,
Aa thowt that aa was dying,
Me faather would have paid the smart,
And he'd run for the golden guinea,
But the sergeant swore he'd kissed the book,
So noo they've got young Jimmy.

When Jimmy talks aboot the wars,
Its worse than death to hear him,
And aa must run and hide me face,
Because aa cannot bear him,
A grenadier or a brigadeer,
He says they're sure to make him,
And ayee he jibes and cracks his jokes,
And bids me not forsake him,

As aa walk ower the stubble field,
Below it runs the seam,
Aa thowt o' Jimmy hewing there,
But it was just a dream,
Her hewed the very coals we burn,
And when the fire aa's leeting,
Te think the lumps was in his hands,
It sets me heart a beating.

For 3 lang years he's followed me,
Noo aa must live without him,
There's nothing noo that aa can do,
But weep and think about him,
So break me heart and then it's ower,
So break me heart me dearie,
And aa'll lie doon in the cold green groond,
For of single life aa'm weary.
^^


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Subject: Lyr Add: RECRUITED COLLIER
From: GUEST,NSC
Date: 17 Sep 01 - 06:45 AM

I note from the DT that the only entry for this song is as sung by Dick Gaughan.

I first heard this song in Gosforth Folk Club in Newcastle in the late sixties, sung in a Geordie dialect. I know that the song is not of Geordie origins however.

Anyway, my point is that Dick's last verse omits an important four lines. The version, as I have it, is slightly different to Dick's but the real difference is these four lines.

At some stage in the near future I will post the Geordie Dialect version but I append here Dicks version with the last stanza amended.

RECRUITED COLLIER

O what's the matter wi' you, my lass,
And where's your dashing Jimmy?
O, the soldier boys have ta'en him up
And sent him far, far from me.
Last payday he went off to town
And them red-coated fellows
Enticed him in and made him drunk
And he's better gone to the gallows.

The very sight of his cockade
It sets us all a-crying,
And me I nearly fainted twice.
I thought that I was dying.
My father would have paid the smart
And he ran for the golden guinea,
But the sergeant swore he'd kissed the book
And now they've got young Jimmy.

When Jimmy talks about the wars,
It's worse than death to hear him.
I have to go and hide my face
Because I cannot bear him.
A brigadier or grenadier
He says they're bound to make him,
But aye he laughs and cracks his jokes
And bids me not forsake him.

As I walked ower the stubble fields--
Below it runs the seam--
I thought of Jimmy hewing there,
But it was all a dream.
He hewed the very coals we burn
And when the fire I'm lighting,
To think the coals was in his hands,
It sets my heart to beating.

For three long years he's followed me.
Now I must live without him.
There's nothing now that I can do
But weep and think about him.
So break my heart and then it's ower.
So break my heart, my dearie,
And lay me in the cold ground,
For of single life I'm weary.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: bill\sables
Date: 17 Sep 01 - 07:01 AM

According to Bert Lloyd the text came from J.T.Huxtable from Workington Cumberland. It appears in R. Anderson's "Ballads in the Cumberland Dialect" (Wigton 1808). Lloyd also states in "Come All Ye Bold Miners" that the usual tune was fitted by himself. Lloyd also omits the first four lines of your last verse.
Bil


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: GUEST,NSC
Date: 17 Sep 01 - 07:37 AM

Thanks bill/sables.

I knew it was not a Geordie song. I wonder who added the stanza?

I shall check my records to see if i can find out. I did not know that Bert Lloyd had arranged the tune and I certainly respect his comments.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: GUEST,treaties1
Date: 17 Sep 01 - 08:43 AM

As a Lancashire lass this song has always been appropiate in the once strong mining area of Lancashire UK, where I live and sing and I have always known and sung the last verse as:

For four long years I've followed him Now I must live without him For there's nothing left that I can do but weep and think about him So break my heart and then it's o'er So break my heart my dearie And I'll lie in the cold clay ground For of single life I'm weary


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 17 Sep 01 - 10:22 AM

Kate Rusby's version of it also omits the first 4 lines of the last verse... probably because it didn't fit with the Sharpe programmes. Still it's a very evocative song, and if you want the other side, there's one called 'The Recruited Collier's lament' which can be found in the Mudcat song book. Just can't place who wrote it.... (*BG* with faint echoes of trumpet blowing)

LTS


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 17 Sep 01 - 10:59 AM

The mysterious extra lines were added by Stephen Sedley, in his book The Seeds of Love (Essex Music, 1967).  He commented:

"Based on the version sung by Ann Briggs on the Topic LP The Iron Muse, which in turn is closely based on the set supplied to A.L. Lloyd for inclusion in Come All Ye Bold Miners by J.T. Huxtable, a Workington collier.  The final stanza has been collated with the mostly garbled text published by Robert Anderson in Ballads in the Cumberland Dialect (1808)."

Almost everybody I have heard sing this song (including Dick and Kate) has used the Huxtable/Lloyd set; the Sedley collation appears on a number of websites, which as usual credit no sources; all but one have clearly just copied it from somebody else's site.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: GUEST,NSC
Date: 17 Sep 01 - 06:38 PM

Thanks Malcolm.

I now know where I got the last stanza. I got the song by listening to a number of singers and also reading The Seeds of Love. I had never read the footnote.

Mystery resolved.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: GUEST,Genie
Date: 18 Sep 01 - 03:02 AM

I prefer this song without the four lines in question. The "So break my heart ....." acts as a sort of coda for the whole piece and makes it somehow more poignant I think.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 18 Sep 03 - 04:23 PM

The Recruited Collier, and the issue of A. L. Lloyd's rôle in making it into the song we now know, just now came up in another thread. Rather than interrupt further the progress of that discussion, I'll post the following here; wary though I am of reviving old threads in case they attract too much repetition.

In a discussion of Lloyd's editorial practices in the preparation of Come All Ye Bold Miners, Roy Palmer wrote:

"It is clear that Lloyd's editorial approach was not merely to reproduce the material sent to him. Sometimes the changes made were small... but others were far-reaching. On 'Jimmy's Enlisted (or the Recruited Collier)' Lloyd laconically notes: 'Text from J.H. Huxtable, of Workington. A version of this ballad appears in R. Anderson's Ballads in the Cumberland Dialect (1808).' In fact, the original is entitled simply 'Jenny's Complaint', and features not a miner who enlists but a ploughman. A third party, Nicol, talks to Jenny about the wars, and Jemmy (as he is called) merely 'led' (carted) the coals which remind Jenny of him. Lloyd silently (and brilliantly) remade the song. Although one phrase, 'I'se leetin', sits uncomfortably in the new text the adaptation has enjoyed considerable success, to a tune also supplied by Lloyd to replace 'Nancy to the Greenwood Gane', which Anderson prescribed."

Palmer also prints a facsimile of a brief letter from Lloyd which refers to the tune. Lloyd wrote:

"I fitted the tune; but whether I made up the melody or took it from tradition I no longer remember. I think the latter; but if so, what was it the tune of?"

Roy Palmer, A. L. Lloyd and Industrial Song, in Ian Russell, ed., Singer, Song and Scholar, Sheffield Academic Press, 1986, pp.135-7.

I haven't seen the Anderson book; Roy Palmer, of course, has. Whether or not any communication from a J. H. Huxtable survives in Lloyd's papers is unknown; they are held at Goldsmith's College, London, but I don't think they have been fully indexed. Palmer's implication seems to be that the "Huxtable" text was from Anderson's book, but I'm not qualified to comment on that.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: GUEST,Nerd
Date: 21 Sep 03 - 03:05 AM

Just to add;

1) although some have looked for it, no communication from Huxtable seems to have survived; this does not necessarily mean much, because other documents that we know Lloyd actually possessed have also not survived. But Paul Adams told me in an email some time ago that he never succeeded in tracking Huxtable down, though he has lived for a long long time in the same city (Workington) where Huxtable was reported by Lloyd to have lived.

2) The Anderson book is a devil to get ahold of in the US, though it was popular and went through many printings in Northern England and Scotland in the nineteenth century. I used Inter-library Loan to get a copy for a paper I've written on Lloyd. One important thing to mention is that Anderson was the author, not the collector, of "Ballads in the Cumberland Dialect." In the preface he is very specific about the fact that he wrote the ballads, and that many of the ballads were written to refer to real people that he knew. He did sometimes also collect songs, and some printings featured a supplementary section of ballads he collected, but "Jenny's Complaint" is always in the section of original poetry. Although a couple of Anderson's original ballads did enter oral tradition, I don't think any survived as late as the 1950s--but I'd have to check the relevant article, which is at home.

3) What really points to something fishy is that Lloyd knew the Anderson version (he mentions it in his note), yet allows the reader to believe that Anderson collected rather than wrote it (he says "A version of this ballad appears in R. Anderson's Ballads in the Cumberland Dialect," not "the original version.") It's also notable that the song never appeared on a broadside or in a chapbook, and was never collected from oral tradition, Indeed was never apparently published at all without Anderson's name on it, until Lloyd's book. So, if Huxtable had simply sent Lloyd a manuscript or a printed copy, how would Lloyd know there was a version in Anderson's book--which was not a folksong book and therefore unlikely to be consulted?

A few possibilities:

1) Huxtable simply sent Lloyd Anderson's poem and said "I got this from Anderson's book"

or

2) Lloyd saw the poem in Anderson's book, fancied it, fiddled with it, liked the result, and wanted to put it in the book. Since it was originally not industrial and not a folksong, to do so he'd have to "collect" it from someone, and so he ascribed it to Huxtable.


In either case, Lloyd must have re-worked the ballad from Anderson's original.

3) Huxtable did the adaptation and sent it to Lloyd, acknowledging Anderson as a source. Lloyd then simply concealed Huxtable's and Anderson's roles in writing the song and pretended it was a folksong.

Any of these options is dodgy practice for a folklorist, but it remains a great song. Interestingly, I don't find, as Roy Palmer does, that "I'se Leetin'" fits badly in the song. What jars on me is

"As I walked ower the stubble fields--
Below it runs the seam--
I thought of Jimmy hewing there,
But it was all a dream."

The sort of parenthetical structure, involving a ninety degree turn in which the seam is suddenly inserted and the field deserted, is odd for folksong. It comes about because Lloyd had to take one of Anderson's stanzas which begins "As I walked ower the stubble fields" and somehow make it apply to a collier.

Also, the idea that the soldiers hve taken Jimmy far, far away (which is in the first stanza) is incompatible with the idea that he is always talking about the wars and making Jenny cringe, then joking with her, which is in stanza three. This came about because Lloyd eliminated a third party named Nicol, who in Anderson's original talks about the wars after Jemmy has already left. By giving Nicol's role to Jemmy, Lloyd creates what in film would be called an error in continuity: Jemmy is gone to the wars, but still talks to Jenny about them!

One funny thing: Sedley calls Anderson's version of Jenny's Complaint a "mostly garbled text!" Somehow he missed the fact that it was the original! As I've tried to show above, it's really only garbled if you take the Lloyd text as standard. If you look at it objectively, Lloyd's is prettier but Anderson's makes more sense.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Folkiedave
Date: 21 Sep 03 - 05:17 AM

I recently sold a copy of Anderson (from around 1890 as I remember) for £25.00

Dave
www.collectorsfolk.co.uk


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 21 Sep 03 - 03:21 PM

I never had a problem with the field/seam thing.
I saw her lingering over the places linked to him, and the field over the seam would be such a place.
Running for the golden guinea,
Keith.


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Subject: Lyr Add: JENNY'S COMPLAINT (Robert Anderson)
From: Nerd
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 02:21 AM

For those with an interest, here is Anderson's original ballad, Jenny's Complaint, which he dated to April 19, 1803.

O, Lass! I've fearfu' news to tell!
What thinks te's come owre Jemmy?
The sowdgers hev e'en pick'd him up
And sent him far, far frae me:
To Carel he set off wi' wheat;
Them ill reed-cwoated fellows
Suin wil'd him in, then meade him drunk--
He'd better geane to th'gallows

The varra seet o' his cockade
It set us a' a-cryin;
for me I fairly fainted tweyce,
Tou may think that was tryin:
My fadder wad ha'e paid the smart
And shew'd a gowden guinea
But lack-a-day! He'd kiss'd the buik,
and that'll e'en kill Jenny

When Nichol talks about the wars,
It's war than deeth to hear him;
I oft steal out, to hide my tears,
And cannot, cannot bear him;
For aye he jeybes, and cracks his jwokes,
and bids me nit forsake him;
A brigadier, or grandidier,
He says, they're sure to meake him.

If owre the stibble fields I gang
I think I see him ploughin,
And ev'ry bit o' bread I eat,
It seems o' Jemmy's sowin';
He led the varra cwoals we burn,
And when the fire I's leetin,
To think the peats were in his hands,
It sets my heart a beatin.

What can I de? I nought can de,
But whinge, and think about him;
For three lang years, he follow'd me
Now I mun live widout him!
Brek, heart, at yence, and then it's owre!
Life's nought widout yen's dearie!
I'll suin lig in my cauld, cauld grave,
For oh! Of life I'm weary!

This has a more believable sequence: Jemmy is recruited, Jenny and her father go with others to try to get him out (hence, the sight of his cockade sets them to crying), but they fail. For this reason, Jemmy is not around for an extended period to talk about the war. Enter Nichol. The Nichol stanza is a little confusing. I think we have to assume that the "him" referred to in the lines "and bids me nit forsake him; A brigadier, or grandidier, He says, they're sure to meake him" is Jemmy, not Nichol. In other words, Nichol seems to be bidding her not to forsake Jemmy. What are friends for?

Certainly in the following stanzas the "him" refers to Jemmy, not Nichol. It is even possible that Anderson himself wrote the third stanza with Jemmy talking about the wars, then realized the "continuity error" that this would entail, and hastily substituted Nichol. This would account for the person being referred to as "him" changing mid-stanza. This is also probably what caused Sedley to think it was garbled.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: greg stephens
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 05:54 AM

Some very interesting stuff here, Nerd, thanks for all this information. Additional notes on Robert Anderson: you were wondering if any of his songs survived into the 1950's. There were certainly plenty knocking around in the early 1900's. Vaughan Williams got the tunes to seven Anderson songs from a man called Carruthers in carlisle in 1906.(I dont know if Jenny's Complaint was one of them, but I bet Bert Lloyd did!).Kidson and Gilchrist also found Anderson songs. The only information I can offer about survivals as late as 1950 is that I heard a farmer in Tunstall(near Kirkby Lonsdale) sing "Canny Cumberland" (or part thereof) in the late 60's. So there's nothing inherently unlikely about a mysterious Mr Huxtable singing a version of an Anderson song to Bert Lloyd.
    If Lloyd did write this song and pass it off as traditional, let us not be too censorious. He worshipped the tradition; and good leftie that he was, he worshipped colliers. Words like "hewed" and "seam" were like pornography to him.Many a studious collector has been reduced to "improving" songs in one way or another: the "folk" are perverse creatures, and do not always write or transmit songs in the way us enthusiasts would like them to. The temptation to remedy these defects is very powerful, and that Lloyd may have succumbed to it is can be understood.
    Totally agree with Nerd about the "below it runs the seam" bit. THis is so bad that I am almost tempted to believe in the elusive Mr Huxtable...I can't quite credit that Bert Lloyd would be so lacking in self-censorship as to try to pass that off as the genuine article.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: greg stephens
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 05:58 AM

Additional note: for those interested in this thread who can't quite follow Anderson's dialect, the reference to "Carel" in the first verse is how he wrote "Carlisle".


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 10:04 AM

The songs Vaughan Williams noted from Mr Carruthers (who Roy Plamer identifies as "probably John Carruthers of Wigtown") were Bleckel Murry Neet, King Roger, Barberry Bell, A Wife of Willy Miller, Rossler Fair, Geordie Gair, and Rob Lowry. Anderson's verses were all set to existing tunes. Bleckel Murry Neet, Geordie Gair (Gill), and King Roger are printed in Roy Palmer, Bushes and Briars: Folk Songs Collected by Ralph Vaughan Williams (Llanerch, 1999, 14-19). A further song, The Codbeck Wedding, is printed (selected verses) in Keith Gregson's article Lakeland Step-Dancing and the Cumberland Bard (English Dance and Song, vol.42 no.3, 1980), along with other dance-related extracts from Andersons's works. Gregson also prints a number of Andersons's songs in his Cumbrian Songs and Ballads (Dalesman, 1980).

There is a longer piece by Gregson, The Cumberland Bard: an Anniversary Reflection in The Folk Music Journal 4 (4) 1983, 333-365. Included are texts for The Bleckel Murry-Neet (plus tune), Barbary Bell (plus a broadside text and one noted from an oral source; with two tunes), The Whorton Wedding (plus tune), Sally Grey (plus a text noted from an oral source; with two tunes), Geordie Gill (with two tunes), Jenny's Complaint, and Rob Lowrie (with tune). The tune prescribed by Anderson for Jenny's Complaint (Nancy's to the Greenwood gane) is not given, and I haven't found it yet; it may be at Bruce Olson's site, as it was used in Allan Ramsay's ballad opera The Gentle Shepherd (1725).

Gregson alludes to correspondence with Bert Lloyd about Jenny's Complaint (op. cit., 338-9):

"Unfortunately, The Recruited Collier is a mystery. From correspondence with A. L. Lloyd it appears that somewhere in a west Cumbrian library there is a manuscript which holds the secret. If that manuscript is merely Anderson's original song, the reworking is probably recent. If the manuscript contains the words of The Recruited Collier then the mystery deepens. This, of course, would be the text which Lloyd received from Jim Huxtable of Workington and which inspired him to compose one of the great tunes of the Folk Song Revival."

Incidentally, Barbary Bell appeared on 19th century broadsides, with the story moved from Cumbria to Yorkshire and various other changes (including a chorus). A tune appearing in MS tunebooks of the period as Barbary Bell is a form of St Patrick's Day in the Morning; Anderson prescribed Cuddle and cuddle us awe thegither; at the moment I don't know if that's the same tune or not.


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Subject: Tune Add: NANCY'S TO THE GREEN-WOOD GANE
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 12:41 PM

And here is the tune that Anderson intended for Jenny's Complaint, taken in this case from Johnson's Scots Musical Museum (vol.I, 1787, no.50, p.50):

X:1
T:Nancy's to the Green-wood Gane
B:Scots Musical Museum, I 50.
N:Tune prescribed by Robert Anderson for "Jenny's Complaint".
L:1/8
Q:1/4=100
M:4/4
K:Bb
F2|F3 G F2 (ED)|(EDC) B, G3 B|F3 G (F3/2G/F) D|
F4 B3 F|(G2 G/A/B) F2 (ED)|(ED)(C B,) G3 B|F3 G (F3/2G/B) D|F4 B2 F2|
B2 d2 d2 (cd)|(edc) B G2 (F3/2G/)|B2 d2 (ed) (cB)|(d3 e) f2 z g|
f2 d2 {e}d2 (cd)|(edc) B G2 e2|(d3/2e/) f2 (F3/2G/F) D|F4 B2|]


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Nerd
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 02:53 PM

I agree that one can't be too censorious of Lloyd. However, no matter how the song came to him, it is inconceivable to me that he actually thought it was a traditional song; he was too well-read and too careful a scholar to check the Anderson book and not realize he was reading original poetry. So he was pulling the wool over people's eyes. But at the same time, he did it in what one would have to call a good-natured, and well-intentioned, way. That is, he wanted publicity for "industrial folklore" to show that working people in industrial jobs had cultures just as worthwhile as the peasantry. And I rather suspect that he enjoyed the private joke of rewriting traditional songs and re-introducing them to singers without making his interventions clear.

Malcolm, it was the Gregson articles I intended to check when I got home, but I seem to have misplaced the folder for the moment. Did he mention whether any of the Anderson songs survived into the 1950s in oral tradition? Greg mentions a late 60s date, but of course by then the revival was in full swing, so the farmer could have learnt it from Paul and Linda Adams!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 04:16 PM

Gregson says "With the exception of Sally Grey, Anderson's songs seem no longer to be sung in Cumbria, although there are elderley people like my own great-aunt who can recall hearing them at 'murry-neets' when they were young."

That's not to say that some may not have hung on in places, of course; and they had been printed, in some cases, with music.

On the subject of Lloyd's Recruited Collier tune, it occurs to me that it's very similar indeed to Ewan MacColl's Sweet Thames Flow Softly. I wonder if there might be any connection.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: greg stephens
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 08:16 PM

I assure you, Nerd, Jim Larkin didnt know anything about Paul and Linda Adams (or much about the folk revival for that matter!). And in point of fact the tune he sang Canny Cumberland to was not the one that Paul and Linda recorded. Jim's was virtually the same tune that Kidson noted in Kirby Lonsdale 60 years before(and also the one recorded by the legendary Greg Stephens on a Fellside record produced by Paul Adams!).


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Nerd
Date: 24 Sep 03 - 02:56 PM

Greg,

I didn't mean to cast aspersions on Mr. Larkin's sources! When you said "a farmer" I assumed you weren't well enough acquainted to know his name. Now I see you just realized it was unnecessary to identify him by name.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: greg stephens
Date: 24 Sep 03 - 03:23 PM

Talking of farmer's names, nerd: the 60's was along time ago and my memory can lapsed: his name was actually Jim Parkin, not Larkin. He sung a lot of old Cumbrian songs, in the Highwayman in Burrow.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 21 Feb 05 - 11:30 AM

Here's a link to Nerd's Folklore article about Lloyd, Reynardine and Recruited Collier.

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Nerd
Date: 22 Feb 05 - 12:35 AM

Hey, that's neat; thanks, Becky! I was a bit more detailed in my treatment of The Recruited Collier in the original version, but they made me condense it a great deal for the journal. The only thing that's really odd about the online version is the way the stanzas of songs come out in two different fonts!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: GUEST,Spanish partisan
Date: 07 Nov 05 - 05:48 PM

Thanks for all the notes on the last stanza everyone. However, i'm in a slight dilemma... do i include the first 4 lines of the last verse or not?! i'd appreciate some comments on personal preference!
thanks very much. x


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Matthew Edwards
Date: 02 Nov 08 - 01:34 PM

I'm not sure whether it is a good idea or not to revive this old thread; as Malcolm observed earlier it may only encourage people to repeat what has been written already. However this is just a footnote prompted by the discovery of a copy of A L Lloyd's Come All Ye Bold Miners in a Carnforth bookshop. The copy formerly belonged to David [?] and it contains a letter dated 26 November 1965 from Stephen [probably Stephen Sedley] which reads "...Re The Recruited Collier, I have a letter from Bert Lloyd somewhere, and I can't find it, which says he got the words from Jim Huxtable but Huxtable had a throat infection and couldn't sing; however he named the tune as (I think) Dolly Gray or summat and Bert got that off a workmate. Bert, interestingly, reshapes and edits a lot of his stuff without publicizing the fact, and what the eye hasn't read about the ear doesn't hear it, seems."
It is worth re-reading Lloyd's preface to the booklet as this establishes the context in which the songs in the book were collected:- "In the spring of 1951, as part of the mining industry's contribution to the Festival of Britain, it was decided to try to collect coalfield songs before they disappeared. I was asked to arrange a competition; and by means of the Mining Review, a cinema newsreel of colliery affairs, and the National Coal Board's magazine, Coal, miners were invited to submit any songs they knew..."

The implication therefore is that The Recruited Collier was one of many songs submitted by miners in 1951, but the missing letter from Lloyd to Sedley suggests that Lloyd claimed to have met Jim Huxtable to get the words but only the name of the tune from him. It is noticeable that even back in 1965 there were queries about the origins of the song, and about Lloyd's role in "reshaping" songs.

The letter also refers to the Birketts of Elterwater; it was from Franklin Birkett that Ann & Stephen Sedley collected two songs in 1967 - The charcoal black and the bonny grey and The noble fox-hunting. These were sung by Martin Wyndham-Reed, accompanied by Nic Jones, on the Broadside LP English Sporting Ballads.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: The Sandman
Date: 02 Nov 08 - 01:50 PM

here is aversion with concertina accompaniment
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iEKVeI_VD3E


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 02 Nov 08 - 03:02 PM

Sorry Cap'n - did you really just type 'aversion'
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Fred McCormick
Date: 02 Nov 08 - 03:34 PM

The source of the tune has come up once or twice in this thread without, as far as I can see, anyone identifying it. It is in fact derived from the first half of the tune of a song in Irish called Túirne Mháire (Mary's Spinning Wheel). Presumably it was Bert who adapted it to fit the Recruited Collier. Túirne Mháire is sung on the CD Once I Loved, by the sisters, Sarah & Rita Keane of Caherlistrane, County Galway. It can also be found in Eibhlín Bean Mhic Choisdealbha's collection of songs from that area; Amráin Muige Seola.

The tune of Sweet Thames Flow Softly is to my ears quite different. Although MacColl almost certainly adapted it from a traditional source, I've always suspected that source to be A Bhean Úd Thíos ar Bruach an tSruthaín (O Woman Washing By The River), and which MacColl would have known from field recordings of Elizabeth Cronin and Maire Ní Shuilleabhain.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 02 Nov 08 - 03:54 PM

For someone who can't carry off the appropriate accent, Anderson's phonetic spellings are a bit off-putting, but if you render Jenny's Complaint in more or less Standard English, & set it to Nancy's to the Greenwood Gane, it's a fine song. Having sung it (in public) I much prefer it to TRC. One of the nice things about it is that Nancy's... rolls along, without any of those reverential pauses between lines that you tend to get with TRC.

Incidentally, I used a slightly different version of Nancy's..., which I found on Jack Campin's site here.

X:27
T:AIR XXVII Scornful Nancy.
B:Joseph Mitchell: "The Highland Fair" (1731)
Z:Jack Campin
M:C|
L:1/8
K:C
G | G3   A   G2 (FE)|(FE)(DC) A3 c | G3A       (GA)(GE)|(G3A)    c2
(cd)|(ed)(cA) (cA)(GE)|(FE)(DC) A3 c | G3A       (GA)(cE)|(G3A)    c2||
(GA)|c2   e2   e2 (de)|(fe)(dc) A2(GA)| c3      d (ed)(ec)|(f3g/a/) g3
a |(ga)(gf) e2 (de)|(fe)(dc) A2 f2 |(e/f/g) G2 (GA)(GE)| G4      c2|]

(Bruce Olson's index confirms that 'Scornful Nancy' and 'Nancy's to the Greenwood Gane' are one and the same.)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 02 Nov 08 - 04:25 PM

Well spotted, Fred - although it's both halves of the tune, surely?

X:1
T:Túirne Mháire
L:1/8
M:12/8
K:G
D2G G2G F2G A2c|B2c A2G F3 D3|D2G G2G F2G A2c|B2c A2F G3 G3:|
|:B2d d2d d2d d2B|c2B A2G F3 D3|D2G G2G F2G A2c|B2c A2F G3 G3:|

(ABC from The Fiddler's Companion.)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Fred McCormick
Date: 03 Nov 08 - 04:46 AM

You could be right. I'm damned if I can remember how the second half goes, and I'm too lazy to pull the Keane Sisters record out of the stack and play it. However, I will aver that their tune is longer than that of TRC, so Bert presumably reduced it.

Also, the connection has been made elsewhere in print. I think Roy Palmer mentions it in Singer, Song and Scholar. Plus, I think I recall Eric Winter spotting it when he reviewed the Keane Sisters record back in the early 70s.

Sorry to be so vague but it's not yet mid-morning and I'm still only on my first cup of coffee.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: The Sandman
Date: 03 Nov 08 - 08:11 AM

thanks jim. a version can be found on you tube
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iEKVeI_VD3E&feature=channe
there is a similarity,between Sweet Thames and Recriuted ColLier,apart from them both having good lyrics.
I find it impossible to sing one after the other,without confusing the tunes,the first parts are almost identical.
I have the same problem with a couple of hornpipes Fairies and Off to California.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: GUEST,Keith Gregson
Date: 02 Feb 09 - 03:28 PM

After years of being out of the loop and suddenly discovering how to work aspects of the internet, I am pleased to see some of my old beavering about still has some currency. I can shuffle off my mortal coil a happy man (eventually). Incidentally I have a shelf full of Robert Anderson books from the early nineteenth century onwards and four ballads in his own handwriting. He still intrigues me and I did a short article on him in Cumbria Life (January) and have been working recently with Professor Mike Huggins at the University of Cumbria on the value of Anderson's work to the sporting historian. Still signs of life in the old dog yet - look me up at www.keithgregson.com. One or two people have expressed an interest in a reprint of my 1980s Corvan book - I only have a couple of battered old copies left now.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Help me remember this song
From: Richard Mellish
Date: 13 Dec 09 - 04:23 PM

It may be of interest that that song is one of those that Bert Lloyd created out of something else. See this posting and, if you want to follow it further, the rest of that thread and the "Reynardine" essay from which the extract was quoted.

Richard


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Tim Chesterton
Date: 13 Sep 10 - 09:36 PM

Apparently the Anderson book is now republished.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Tim Chesterton
Date: 13 Sep 10 - 10:34 PM

Is there anywhere I can find an explanation of the musical notation system Malcolm used in his 2003 note above to give the tune for 'Nancy's to the Greenwood Gone'? I'm used to traditional musical notation and can't make sense of this system Malcolm's using.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Artful Codger
Date: 14 Sep 10 - 03:40 AM

It's called ABC notation. See the ABC Music Project: http://abc.sourceforge.net/standard/

You can convert ABC notation to MIDIs or PDF scores using one of the online converters:
At Concertina.net
At folkinfo.org

There's probably a Permathread explaining ABC and the converters, since the notation is used quite a bit at Mudcat Café.

If you're on a Mac, consider getting the Barfly application (freeware/shareware, and well worth the price).


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Tim Chesterton
Date: 14 Sep 10 - 09:40 AM

Fantastic, AC - thanks!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Artful Codger
Date: 22 Apr 11 - 01:16 PM

By the way, the Anderson book is now available at Google Books in several editions. The 1815 edition includes the additional ballads not by Anderson, identified clearly in the TOC. I note that some of these "extra" songs are included in both the earlier and later editions, but without any indication as to authorship, which might lead people to erroneously conclude that they, too, had been written by Anderson.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 22 Apr 11 - 05:52 PM

It looks as if Jenny's Complaint is listed as one of the Anderson originals, though.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Steve Howlett
Date: 22 Apr 17 - 06:11 AM

I have come here via Jon Boden's excellent A Folk Song A Day, so with the greatest respect to Matthew Edwards and the late Malcolm Douglas I'm adding my two penn'orth.

Looking at Robert Anderson's original poem, I see at least one of the hallmarks of a traditional folk song, the change of narrator which allows a man to sing a woman's song. The "I" in the first line is addressing Jenny, but at the end of the second verse refers to her obliquely: "and that'll e'en kill Jenny", so is addressing someone else. In verse 3 it's obviously Jenny who has to steal out to hide her tears when Nichol (a common name in 19th century Carlisle?) talks of the horrors of war, and we follow her point of view to the end.

Anderson has clearly modelled his poem on a traditional ballad, but one thing jars to my ears: the mockery of the ignorant yokels (Jenny or Nichol or both) who don't know the difference between a Brigadier and a Grenadier. That suggests an educated man sneering indulgently at the peasantry.

I don't know if Robert Anderson wrote any other poems in the faux-naive folk style, but I'd be interested to learn what inspired him to compose Jenny's Complaint on the 19th of April 1803. An actual event perhaps, or an overheard conversation? Or a genuine pre-existing ballad?

A lovely song anyway, with or without the explanatory 4 lines in the final verse. And now I'll go and copy the tunes kindly supplied up-thread.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: GUEST,jim bainbridge
Date: 04 Jun 17 - 06:44 AM

'When Johnny talks about the wars
It's worse than death to hear him
I have to go and hide my face
Because I cannot bear him'

It's a lovely song but that last phrase doesn't make a lot of sense, does it?- why can't she bear HIM? This seems to be in all the early versions as well...
interesting about the tune being Irish


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 04 Jun 17 - 01:04 PM

She can not bear him talking about the wars.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: The Sandman
Date: 04 Jun 17 - 02:56 PM

its happens to be the same tune as Sweet Thames Flow Softly. and Keith I agree


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: GUEST,padgett
Date: 05 Jun 17 - 03:03 AM

I must go out and hide my tears, because I cannot bear him (it)~

Johnny talking (bragging) about the wars and battle to come ~ when the woman knows the reality and chance of him returning alive/unscathed

Ray


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: GUEST,jim bainbridge
Date: 05 Jun 17 - 12:24 PM

Yes but if she cannot bear it, why say 'him'- I can only surmise that it was an 18th century usage where him/it were the same thing. I don't sing the song, but if I did, I'd sing 'IT' & make sense...


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: Brian Peters
Date: 05 Jun 17 - 12:54 PM

Going back to the original poem, Nerd's point was that it's the elimination of the 'Nichol' character that has made a nonsense of this verse.

When Nichol talks about the wars,
It's war than deeth to hear him;
I oft steal out, to hide my tears,
And cannot, cannot bear him;
For aye he jeybes, and cracks his jwokes,
and bids me nit forsake him;
A brigadier, or grandidier,
He says, they're sure to meake him.

However, unlike Nerd, I think that it's Nichol, not Jemmy, who is cracking the jokes, bidding her not forsake Jemmy, and assuring her that Jemmy will no doubt receive a promotion.

The tune does indeed have several phrases reminiscent of 'Sweet Thames'.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Recruited Collier
From: The Sandman
Date: 05 Jun 17 - 01:07 PM

Or perhaps Sweet Thames, was based upon the Rec Coll


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