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Lyr Req: Henny Munroe (Jim McLean)

DigiTrad:
GLENCOE
SHORES OF SUTHERLAND
SMILE IN YOUR SLEEP


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GUEST,Guest 07 Sep 02 - 08:10 AM
Sorcha 07 Sep 02 - 09:50 AM
Malcolm Douglas 07 Sep 02 - 10:11 AM
Jim McLean 07 Sep 02 - 10:11 AM
Sorcha 07 Sep 02 - 10:14 AM
GUEST,Guest, Big Tim 08 Sep 02 - 05:52 AM
Jim McLean 08 Sep 02 - 11:50 AM
Willie-O 08 Sep 02 - 12:08 PM
Jim McLean 08 Sep 02 - 01:00 PM
GUEST,Guest, Big Tim 08 Sep 02 - 01:30 PM
Jim McLean 08 Sep 02 - 03:45 PM
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Subject: Henny Munroe
From: GUEST,Guest
Date: 07 Sep 02 - 08:10 AM

I heard this song only once but it had something to do with the Highland Clearances. I would like the words and music if anyone can help. Thanks, Johnny MacK


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Henny Munroe
From: Sorcha
Date: 07 Sep 02 - 09:50 AM

I don't know if it's the one you want, but there is General Monroe in the DT, with a MIDI click to play at the bottom. There is sheet music at Yet Another DT Alternatively, are you really looking for "Henny" and not Henry?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Henny Munroe
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 07 Sep 02 - 10:11 AM

There are very few traditional songs in English about the Clearances, but a lot of modern ones on the subject. This is one such, I think, and written by Jim McLean, who perhaps will look in later on when he sees the thread title.


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Subject: Lyr Add: HENNY MUNROE (Jim McLean)
From: Jim McLean
Date: 07 Sep 02 - 10:11 AM

I wrote this song as part of a group of Highland Clearance songs. It is set around 1820 and tells the story of a Widow of a soldier she had accompanied during his campaigns in Spain etc., as was the custom then. When she returned to Scotland she suffered more there than abroad!

The tune is 'Saddle the Pony', a lively, pawky Irish jig but slowed down in places where the mood suggests.

HENNY MUNROE
(Jim McLean 1968)

Now Henny Munroe, she married a soldier,
And followed him round the whole world over,
Wherever he fought, there was no one bolder,
Than beautiful Henny, the wife of Munroe.
But one day in Sicily, Donald lay dying,
A bullet had caught him and laid him out low,
Our Henny she buried him where he was lying,
And back to Grumbeg came our Henny Munroe.

When Henny Munroe to Scotland came back,
Her neighbours agreed that nothing she'd lack,
So they gave her a cow, a cottage and tack,
For to pass the old age of brave Henny Munroe.
They gave her a chair, a table and chest,
And they listened at night to the tales that she told.
Of campaigns in Spain and the wounds that she dressed,
Oh, wild were the stories of Henny Munroe.

Now Henny was grey, the snow was a falling,
When Sellar the factor, one night came calling.
"Get out with you fast!", his men were a yelling,
"We're burning the cottage of Henny Munroe"
"We've orders from Sutherland, Duke of this county,
It's wanted for sheep so away you must go!"
The one of his company threw in a faggot
And frightened the life out of Henny Munroe!

They took her meal chest and laughingly spilled it,
They took her one cow and laughingly killed it,
The Minister said "The Good Lord had willed it"
To punish poor wicked old Henny Munroe.
"I've travelled the world and seen the Barbarian,
Followed my Donald wherever he'd go,
But Scotland, my country, the land I was born in
Has broken the heart of old Henny Munroe!"

A man took a pole and smashed in her gable,
Her furniture burned, her chair and her table,
To save her own skin she was only just able,
Oh loud were the roarings of Henny Munroe!
"A curse on your children ", cried Henny the widow,
"If Donald was living he'd give you a show.
What Russia and Turkey and Sicily couldn't do
Scotland has done to old Henny Munroe!"

Cheers,
Jim McLean


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Henny Munroe
From: Sorcha
Date: 07 Sep 02 - 10:14 AM

Thank you very much, Jim! It's so great to have you here.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Henny Munroe
From: GUEST,Guest, Big Tim
Date: 08 Sep 02 - 05:52 AM

Hi Jim, further to the "Avondale" thread,I'm reading "Parable Jones" at present: um, er, an interesting book! Also got a copy of DB's "Ireland Sings" coming in the post, from Canada! Cheers B.T.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Henny Munroe
From: Jim McLean
Date: 08 Sep 02 - 11:50 AM

Hi Big Tim, Dominic gave me his proof copy of Ireland Sings away back. You'll find lots of songs either translated from the Irish by Finton Connolly or arranged and adapted by Wolfe Stephens and I'm afraid you'll have to guesse who they both are! Cheers, Jim


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Henny Munroe
From: Willie-O
Date: 08 Sep 02 - 12:08 PM

Good song Jim, thanks for bringing it here.

There's a song I wrote in the Mudcat Songbook, which is not really about the Clearances but looks at the same era, specifically the Black Watch mutiny of 1743.

1743 (The Ballad of Farquhar Shaw)

I reckon there's many a good story left to tell from those days...

Willie-O


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Henny Munroe
From: Jim McLean
Date: 08 Sep 02 - 01:00 PM

Good song Will-O, I read the book too a while ago. I have just posted another of my Clearance songs, the Fire Raisers, and I'll put some more on when I get time. I will try and work out your tune as I can read music but the ABC notation takes a bit more effort.
Cheers, Jim Mclean


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Henny Munroe
From: GUEST,Guest, Big Tim
Date: 08 Sep 02 - 01:30 PM

Jim: I don't think I'll be able to guess. "Finto[a?]n Connolly = Fintan Lalor/James Connolly? Therefore a land leaguing Irish socialist? Wolfe Stephens = Tone/James Stephens? An Irish literary republican rebel? Too many of those to guess at! Any clues? "Henny Munroe" is a damn good set of lyrics, especially for 1968, new to me. Excellent social, political background detail, atmosphere,etc, for one so young! Is it based on reality or purely imaginary? I've got Eric Richards' biog of Patrick Sellar (1999)sitting in front of me, tried reading it a few times but find it quite heavy going. I guess I'm now really only interested in Irish stuff. Cheers, B.T.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Henny Munroe
From: Jim McLean
Date: 08 Sep 02 - 03:45 PM

Hi Big Tim: Both are Dominic Behan. He has two sons, Fintan and Stephan (his dad's name) and rather than put all the trad songs down to 'Dominic behan' he 're-arranged' the credits. It's more 'aesthetic' to see a variety of names and it's not illegal. After all the publishing royalties have to go somewhere.
Henny Munroe was real and imaginary. If you can get a hold of John McLeod's 'Gloomy Memories', a reply to Harriet Beecher Stowe's 'Sunny Memories...' which she wrote after staying with the Duchess of Sutherland, I think you'll enjoy that. I wrote my Clearance songs to try and do for that period what Woody Guthrie did for the Dustbowl clearances but Scotland wasn't politically ready then. Musical hall type songs about Glasgow and Scotland were OK but any song putting Scotland's grievances in the frame were considered Nationalist=fascist=anti-English. Now, I am told that Donald Dewer and the Labour party was responsible for Scottish devolution and fought for it for years!!
Plus ça change, Big Tim,
Cheers, Jim McLean


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