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Origins: The Grey Goose and the Gander

DigiTrad:
I HAD A WIFE
LOOKIT YONDER
OLD PLANK ROAD


Related thread:
(origins) Origins: My Wife Died on a Saturday Night/Plank Rd (23)


In Mudcat MIDIs:
The Goose and the Gander


alanww 06 Mar 03 - 06:38 AM
Jerry Rasmussen 06 Mar 03 - 07:41 AM
nutty 06 Mar 03 - 07:51 AM
Richie 06 Mar 03 - 08:16 AM
nutty 06 Mar 03 - 10:14 AM
Malcolm Douglas 06 Mar 03 - 10:32 AM
MMario 06 Mar 03 - 10:34 AM
nutty 06 Mar 03 - 12:49 PM
Malcolm Douglas 06 Mar 03 - 01:03 PM
nutty 06 Mar 03 - 02:07 PM
Malcolm Douglas 09 Mar 03 - 09:44 PM
GUEST,Q 09 Mar 03 - 10:56 PM
alanww 10 Mar 03 - 09:47 AM
Dave Bryant 10 Mar 03 - 10:35 AM
alanww 10 Mar 03 - 11:19 AM
alanww 10 Mar 03 - 11:22 AM
Willa 11 Mar 03 - 03:34 PM
nutty 12 Mar 03 - 04:41 AM
GUEST,kimbirley@hotmail.com 12 Mar 03 - 06:29 AM
alanww 12 Mar 03 - 11:11 AM
Willa 12 Mar 03 - 01:07 PM
nutty 12 Mar 03 - 01:34 PM
Joe Offer 24 Nov 10 - 06:59 PM
Steve Gardham 25 Nov 10 - 03:13 PM
GUEST,Steve Dobson 31 Mar 11 - 08:07 AM
RTim 31 Mar 11 - 08:15 AM
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Subject: ADD: The Grey Goose and the Gander
From: alanww
Date: 06 Mar 03 - 06:38 AM

A friend of mine sings this song. Can anyone help with its origins and meaning? (I have been unable to find anywhere on the web, so far.) It is from a tape recorded by Folly Bridge in 1991.

THE GREY GOOSE AND THE GANDER

Well the grey goose and the gander went over yonder hill
And the grey goose went barefoot for fear of being seen
For fear of being seen my boys - by the light of the moon

CHORUS:
Rise early tomorrow morning all in the same tune
Rise early tomorrow morning all in the same tune

The gentlemen took the ladies their house for to view;
Said the gentlemen to the ladies 'Well how do you do?'
How do you do, my boys - by the light of the moon

CHORUS

Well the landlord got drunk and his reckoning forgot
So we pulled down his signpost and smashed all his pots
We smashed all his pots, my boys - by the light of the moon

CHORUS


Thanks!

"Oh tell me honey, tell me do ...!"
Alan


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: Jerry Rasmussen
Date: 06 Mar 03 - 07:41 AM

Hi, Alan:

I've never heard this song or seen it in print, but Leadbelly's Gret Goose is supposedly a slavery song about escape. I can't substantiate that because the person who told me is wee bit suspect.
But if thst is true, and this song is American, it could easily be seen as a song about runaway slaves, nicely masked..

Jerry


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: nutty
Date: 06 Mar 03 - 07:51 AM

There is a version in Fred Hamer's "Green Groves" collection, printed by the EFDSS in 1973.

The song was collected from a Mr A Dobson of Lancashire.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: Richie
Date: 06 Mar 03 - 08:16 AM

The song is known as "Old Grey Goose and Gander" dates to 1844.

Other names are: My Wife Died Sunday Night; Down the Old Plank Road; Way Down the Old Plank Road; Old Plank Road; Looky, Looky Yonder; Monday was My Courtin' Day (Sharp); Aunt Dinah Drunk;

There a number of version on my web-site:Click here

There is a great thread in the DT also.

-Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: nutty
Date: 06 Mar 03 - 10:14 AM

Richie ....your 'Grey Goose and Gander' is a very different song from the one posted above by alanww.

PS I can't access your web site (I use Netscape)


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Subject: ADD: The Goose and the Gander
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 06 Mar 03 - 10:32 AM

As Nutty says, the Old Grey Goose/Plank Road/Monday Was My Courting Day song group (Roud Index no. 3618) is generally considered as quite separate from this one. They do both have a goose and a gander in them.


Number 1094 in the Roud Folk Song Index. It has been found in tradition from time to time in the North of England. Frank Kidson (Traditional Tunes, 1891) printed a Yorkshire set, with music:

THE GOOSE AND THE GANDER

O, the goose and the gander went over the green,
O, the goose she went barefoot for flay'd o' being seen,
For flay'd o' being seen, boys, for flay'd o' being seen,
And the goose she went barefoot for flay'd o' being seen.

I had a black hen and shoo had a white foit,
And shoo laid an egg in a willow tree roit;
In a willow tree roit, in a willow tree roit,
And shoo laid an egg in a willow tree roit.

Kidson commented:

"Many years ago, this used to be a favourite song round about Leeds, though a very silly one. It must claim the indulgence of the reader more upon the merit of the air than that of the words. Before railways and cheap trips acted like general diffusers of London music hall songs, such like ditties in country districts were common in the kitchens of quiet publichouses, and were in general the exclusive copyright of the old fogies who gathered there. The air is from an old manuscript collection of airs in my possession. It appeared in a series of articles upon old tunes contributed by me to the Leeds Mercury Weekly Supplement; otherwise, it has not been in print so far as I am aware. I need scarcely say that this delightful production would be sung only after a certain degree of conviviality had been reached."


X:1
T:The Goose and the Gander
B:Traditional Tunes, Frank Kidson, 1891.
S:Traditional Yorkshire: Leeds area.
N:Roud 1094
L:1/8
Q:1/4=100
M:3/8
K:G
G/ A/|B B B|A A B/A/|G G A|BA G/ A/|
w:O, the goose and the gan-der went_ o-ver the green,_ O, the
B B A/B/|c c e/c/|B3/2 A/ B/c/|G2 d/c/|
w:goose she went_ bare-foot for_ flay'd o' be-ing seen, For_
B B c/B/|A A B/A/|G G G|B3/2A/ G/ A/|
w:flay'd o' be-ing seen, boys, for_ flay'd o' being seen,_ And the
B B A/B/|c c e/c/|B3/2 A/ B/c/|G2|]
w:goose she went_ bare-foot for_ flay'd o' be-ing seen.

Click to play


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: MMario
Date: 06 Mar 03 - 10:34 AM

Malcolm - you are incredible!


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: nutty
Date: 06 Mar 03 - 12:49 PM

Malcolm .... That's a very different tune from the song collected by Fred Hamer that I described above


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 06 Mar 03 - 01:03 PM

Do you fancy posting it? I haven't managed to get hold of a copy of that book yet.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: nutty
Date: 06 Mar 03 - 02:07 PM

Malcolm ..... I haven't cracked ABC yet but could send you a Noteworthy file if you PM me an email address.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 09 Mar 03 - 09:44 PM

Thanks to Nutty, here is the Lancashire set referred to earlier. I've regularised the spelling of the title because nobody would ever think to search for gooise, but have retained Hamer's spelling (an accurate reflection of the pronounciation) in the text.


THE GREY GOOSE AND GANDER


The grey gooise and gander went over yonder hill
The grey gooise went barefoot for flaid o' being seen
For flaid o' being seen, my boys, by the light of the moon
Rise early tomorrow morning all in the same tune

The blacksmith is black, but his money is white
He sits in the alehouse from morning till night
From morning till night, my boys, by the light of the moon
Rise early tomorrow morning all in the same tune

The landlord gets drunk and his reckoning forgot,
So they pulled down his signpost and broke all his pots
They broke all his pots, my boys, by the light of the moon
Rise early tomorrow morning all in the same tune

The gentlemen took the ladies their hounds for to view
The gentlemen to the ladies said, "How do you do",
Said, "How do you do", my boys, by the light of the moon
Rise early tomorrow morning all in the same tune


Fred Hamer, Green Groves, EFDSS 1973: pp. 62-3.


X:1
T:Grey Gooise and Gander
B:Fred Hamer, Green Groves, EFDSS 1973.
S:Mr A. Dobson of Lancashire.
N:Roud 1094
L:1/8
Q:1/4=100
M:3/4
K:G
D2|G2 G2 E2|D2 B,2 D2|G2 G2 FF|G4 (GA)|
w:The grey gooise and gan-der went o-ver yon-der hill The_
B2 G2 B2|A2 F2 D2|G2 F2 E2|D4 D2|
w:grey gooise went bare-foot for flaid o' being seen For
c2 c2 A2|B3/2B/ B2 BA/|G2 G2 B2|A4 D2|
w:flaid o' being seen, my boys, by the light of the moon Rise
G2 BA GF|E2 C2 E2|D2 G2 F2|G4|]
w:ear-ly to-mor-row morn-ing all in the same tune


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 09 Mar 03 - 10:56 PM

Richie's site comes up blank. (Another Netscaper).


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: alanww
Date: 10 Mar 03 - 09:47 AM

Fascinating! Thanks everyone for all your efforts and particularly to Malcolm Douglas. It is clearly the song as published by Fred Hamer, Green Groves, EFDSS 1973: pp. 62-3. So the source has been identified. Brill - and an extra verse too!

But has it got any actual meaning?

"Well the rain's softly falling ...!"
Alan


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: Dave Bryant
Date: 10 Mar 03 - 10:35 AM

Hi Alan, Elsies Band sing a version of this song. They sing "over the green", and "for fear of being seen", but it's a similiar version to the Hamer one above.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: alanww
Date: 10 Mar 03 - 11:19 AM


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: alanww
Date: 10 Mar 03 - 11:22 AM

Oops! I just wanted to say a special thanks to nutty too! But I'm still interested in what the lyrics mean, if anything.

" ... and the oggy man's no more!"
Alan


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: Willa
Date: 11 Mar 03 - 03:34 PM

Life's very strange at times; this morning I picked up the music book I'd borrowed from the music library last week, but not had the time to look through. It fell open at this song, which I'd not heard of before!
The version is as given by Malcolm, from a tape contributed by Bert (A) Dobson of Todmorden. Notes say that he worked as a school master in Bradford, and learnt many of the songs in the pub which his family kept. In verse 1 the phrase used is'flayed a been seen'and this is explained as the dialect version of 'afraid of being seen.

The book, btw, is Songs of the Ridings, collected by M and N Hudleston and published by G Pindar, Scarborough in 2001 (Words and Music)


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: nutty
Date: 12 Mar 03 - 04:41 AM

willa ..... could you, please, let me have the ISBN Number for Songs of the Ridings .... I would like to order a copy


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: GUEST,kimbirley@hotmail.com
Date: 12 Mar 03 - 06:29 AM

I heard and sang 'The Grey Goose and the Gander' in the Sun Inn at Lientwardine, Shropshire, near Ludlow,in 1995. It was sung wonderfully by Peter Faulkner, a coracle maker with a superb baritone voice. As far as I can remember it it went:

         THE GREY GOOSE AND THE GANDER

         The grey goose and the gander went over the green
         The grey goose went barefoot for fear of being seen
         For fear of being seen my boys
         By the night of the moon
         Rise early tomorrow morning all in the same tune.

         The blacksmith is black but his money is white
         He sits in the alehouse from morning till night
         From morning till night my boys, etc.

         The shepherd is happy abroad on his down
         He would not change his life for a sceptre and crown
         For a sceptre and crown my boys, etc.

         The landlord got drunk and his reckoning forgot
         So we smashed all his (???) and broke all his pots
         We broke all his pots my boys, etc.

There was at least one more verse (something with a wagon?) but I've forgotten it. The first two lines were sung solo, with the repeat and 'light of the moon' bit sung with great enjoyment by everyone else in the room. As the landlady (Floss!) was a woman, 'landlord' was changed to 'landlady'! Hope this helps, Kim.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: alanww
Date: 12 Mar 03 - 11:11 AM

Thanks kimbirley: yet another verse!

But I am still interested to know the meaning of the song or whether it refers to a particular incident. Any more thoughts?

"... like a floating spar on an open sea!"
Alan


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: Willa
Date: 12 Mar 03 - 01:07 PM

Hi, Nutty

The book does not have an ISBN number; my usual source of books could not find it on computer and I could not find it on the internet. I think perhaps the Hull Music Library (which is a very good resource) had a copy sent to them by the publishers.

Enquiries to G.A. Pindar & Son
Tern House
Thornburgh Road
Scarborough
YO11 3UY

It costs about £25 and runs to 350 pp, spiral bound, including refs and bibliography


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: nutty
Date: 12 Mar 03 - 01:34 PM

Thanks Willa ....at least now I know where to look ....I will make further enquiries.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Grey Goose and the Gander
From: Joe Offer
Date: 24 Nov 10 - 06:59 PM

This is the song for 25 November on Jon Boden's A Folk Song a Day Website.

-Joe-


Roud Index Search


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Subject: RE: Origins: The Grey Goose and the Gander
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 25 Nov 10 - 03:13 PM

If anyone knows this Peter Faulkner coracle maker it would be useful to have the wagon verse of this obscure song. The shepherd verse is quite revealing in 2 ways.
1) It raises the likelihood of a near London setting.
2) The sentiments expressed are in line with the type of stuff put out by the late 18thc theatres and the pleasure gardens.


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Subject: RE: Origins: The Grey Goose and the Gander
From: GUEST,Steve Dobson
Date: 31 Mar 11 - 08:07 AM

Perhaps your Bert Dobson could be my late Uncle Albert Dobson. He was a schoolmaster in Hebden Bridge? He was born in about 1917.


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Subject: RE: Origins: The Grey Goose and the Gander
From: RTim
Date: 31 Mar 11 - 08:15 AM

I had a school master - taught Music, at my school in Totton, Hants., named Bert Dobson back in the late 1950's. He ran the choir and we did light opera, ie. Gilbert & Sullivan.

Tim Radford


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