Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafemuddy

Post to this Thread - Sort Descending - Printer Friendly - Home


Origins: Aye Waukin' O

DigiTrad:
AYE WAKIN OH


GUEST,Julia 14 Jan 04 - 10:34 PM
Phil Cooper 14 Jan 04 - 11:08 PM
GUEST,Chanteyranger 14 Jan 04 - 11:28 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 15 Jan 04 - 12:13 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 15 Jan 04 - 12:23 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 15 Jan 04 - 12:38 AM
Malcolm Douglas 15 Jan 04 - 04:13 AM
GUEST,Julia 15 Jan 04 - 11:57 AM
GUEST,Chanteyranger 15 Jan 04 - 01:18 PM
GUEST,Philippa 15 Jan 04 - 06:31 PM
Jim McLean 15 Jan 04 - 06:39 PM
Scabby Douglas 15 Jan 04 - 07:45 PM
GUEST,Philippa 16 Jan 04 - 10:25 AM
Emma B 16 Jan 04 - 06:16 PM
Willa 16 Jan 04 - 06:31 PM
Malcolm Douglas 16 Jan 04 - 07:48 PM
Emma B 16 Jan 04 - 08:01 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 16 Jan 04 - 09:33 PM
Jim McLean 17 Jan 04 - 07:39 AM
GUEST,Julia 17 Jan 04 - 07:31 PM
Chanteyranger 18 Jan 04 - 12:40 AM
GUEST,Philippa 02 Feb 04 - 03:15 PM
Rara Avis 03 Feb 04 - 09:33 AM
masato sakurai 03 Feb 04 - 09:41 AM
Jim McLean 03 Feb 04 - 05:56 PM
Felipa 07 Feb 04 - 02:07 PM
GUEST,McWilliams 08 Nov 12 - 02:17 PM
Anne Neilson 08 Nov 12 - 04:26 PM
Allan Conn 09 Nov 12 - 02:42 AM
Jim Carroll 09 Nov 12 - 05:53 AM
GUEST,Philippa 09 Nov 12 - 12:56 PM
GUEST,McWilliams 15 Nov 12 - 05:41 PM
GUEST,Allan Conn 15 Nov 12 - 06:54 PM
nigelgatherer 04 Dec 16 - 06:08 AM
Share Thread
more
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:









Subject: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: GUEST,Julia
Date: 14 Jan 04 - 10:34 PM

Hi all- I have this song clearly associated with Robert Burns, but find no evidence of it in lists of his works, bios etc. that I have looked at. Can anyone positively substantiate his association with it and if not, then who?
Muckle thanks


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: Phil Cooper
Date: 14 Jan 04 - 11:08 PM

I heard it on an Ossian recording (Fisherman's song for Attracting Seals). The notes said it was collected by Burns, who wrote one verse (I think the one about Grace MacFarland). Otherwise a lot of the other verses are shared with a song called The Hexhamshire Lass. Fairport Covention did a version of that on their album called, Nine. I'm sure there are others on the forum with more scholarly background on the song.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: ADD Version: Aye waukin' o
From: GUEST,Chanteyranger
Date: 14 Jan 04 - 11:28 PM

It's introduced in a recent edition of Burns's works, The Canongate Burns, as "...transformed by Burns from an original song. "

Aye waukin' o

Simmer's a pleasant time,
Flowers of every colour;
The water runs owre the heugh,
And I long for my true lover!

Chorus:
Ay, waukin O,
Waukin stil and weary
Sleep I can get nane,
For thinking on my dearie.

When I sleep I dream
When I wauk I'm eerie,
Sleep I can get nane,
For thinking on my dearie ---
Ay, waukin, O

(Chorus)

Lanely night comes on,
A' the lave are sleepin:
I think on my bonie lad,
And I bleet my een wi' greetin,---
Ay, waukin, O, &c.

-Chanteyranger


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: SIMMER'S A PLEASANT TIME (Robert Burns)
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 15 Jan 04 - 12:13 AM

Burns used a different title:

SIMMER'S A PLEASANT TIME
(Robert Burns)

Tune- Ay waukin' O

Simmer's a pleasant time,
Flow'rs of ev'ry color;
The water rins o'er the heugh,
And I long for my true lover.

Ay waukin O,
Waukin still and wearie:
Sleep I can get nane
For thinking on my dearie.

When I sleep I dream
When I wauk I'm eerie;
Sleep I can get nane
For thinking on my dearie.

Lanely night comes on,
A' the lave are sleeping;
I think on my bonnie lad
And I bleer my een with greetin'.

Ay waukin O,
Waukin still and wearie;
Sleep I can get nane
For thinking on my dearie.

The Poetical Works of Robert Burns, with Notes, Glossary and Chronological Table of His Life and Works, Bio. Memoir by Alexander Smith. Burt, Pub.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 15 Jan 04 - 12:23 AM

You are fast on the draw, Chanteyranger.
Interesting how spelling changes from edition to edition.
Wauken is a Sc. variant of waken; there is no apostrophe at the end of the word (as in the title of this thread).

There is a version in the DT that is different from the Burns' song; something Wakin'.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 15 Jan 04 - 12:38 AM

The apostrophe at the end of waukin in the song title should be a comma- "Ay waukin, O."


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 15 Jan 04 - 04:13 AM

The late Bruce Olson did some work on this group of songs. A search here will locate quite a bit of good information in previous discussions, mostly from him. The searching you can do yourself, but here is a link to the entry at his website: http://users.erols.com/olsonw/SONGTXT1.HTM#AYWAKIN, where some history and a number of analogous songs are quoted.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: GUEST,Julia
Date: 15 Jan 04 - 11:57 AM

Thanks so much folks- it's the ol' alternate title thing again, I think. It seemed wierd to me that everyone who has recorded it credits it to Burns but I couldn't find it any where in his bios.
He did do a lot of "mending" and amending, so that muddies the water a bit as well, but just think, if he hadn't taken the time we might not have even his versions now....
BTW, speaking of typos, chanteyranger has "bleet"(to cry out faintly as a sheep) rather than bleer (to obscure or make misty) in the last verse- too picky, I know, (the slip o' the digit phenom) but SOMEbody might sing it that way... sigh
Best to all- J


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: GUEST,Chanteyranger
Date: 15 Jan 04 - 01:18 PM

Oh, my god, I did write "bleet." That's too funny. Yes, purely a typo, as the book clearly has it as "bleer." By the way, the Canongate edition gives a few translations of some of the dialect in the song:

simmer = summer
heugh = runs, cliff, or crag
waukin = waking
wauk = wake, restless
nane = none
lanely = lonely
lave = rest/remainder
bleer = blur


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: GUEST,Philippa
Date: 15 Jan 04 - 06:31 PM

I also associate the song with Burns; as you know he collected and adapted songs as well as composing his own.

Aye waukin' o has some similarity in tune and theme to a Gaelic song, O-ro chan eil cadal orm .


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: Jim McLean
Date: 15 Jan 04 - 06:39 PM

I arranged this song for a collection of Burns' songs recorded by Nigel Denver on Major Minor in 1968 or thereabouts. I got the song from Johnson's Musical Museum and changed it slightly by repeating 'Aye Waukin' O' at the end of each chorus.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: Scabby Douglas
Date: 15 Jan 04 - 07:45 PM

And I think that is now the way it's most commonly sung, Jim.
I never noticed that the repeated lineisn't in the printed versions before.

Thanks for pointing it out.

The song gained a revived prominence when, at his request, it was sung at John Smith's funeral.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: GUEST,Philippa
Date: 16 Jan 04 - 10:25 AM

let me correct myself; the Gaelic song I meant to refer to was "Cadal cha dèan mi", which you could translate as "Sleep I will get nane"


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: HARRY NEWELL
From: Emma B
Date: 16 Jan 04 - 06:16 PM

Although it is mentioned by Bruce Olson as one of the group of songs including Grace McFarlane (the version I sing), I Know Where I'm Going and Ay Waukin' O I couldn't find HARRY NEWELL (c. C18) in the DT - so just out of interest:-

HARRY NEWELL

When I came to this town
They call'd me Harry Newell
Now they've changed my name
And they call me the raking Jewell

They put me to bed
Thinking I was weary;
Sleep I could get none
For thinking of my dearie.

All the night awake
All the day am weary
Sleep I can get none
When I think of my dearie

Her cheeks are ruby-red
Her lips are like a cherry;
Her eyes as black as sloes
Her hair brown as a berry.

She is a lovely lass,
She has my heart in keeping;
When I go to bed
She hinders me from sleeping.

I'll send my love a letter
And I will entreat her;
In Belfast town with speed,
I will be sure to meet her.

Down by the Ropery'
All thro' mud and mire;
Down by Hampster Place,
There liv'd my heart's desire.

She was a beauty bright,
There's no one can excell her
She was my heart's delight,
I know not what befel her.


Ropery - a rope-walk


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: Willa
Date: 16 Jan 04 - 06:31 PM

Heather Heywood sings this (as Aye Wakin O) beautifully on CDTRAX054, Greentrax Recordings. Sleeve notes say: 'I'm not sure if this is a Burns song, though many people would associate him with it. Burns has a hand in many songs having been a collecor as well as a poet and writer. Many of his songs were influenced by, or reworkings of, traditional songs. This one has always been popular and there are several others with similar verses, a sort of traditional 'pick and mix'.'
She sings the version given by Q, with the repeat.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 16 Jan 04 - 07:48 PM

Perhaps we should quote the details Bruce gave for Harry Newall:

"Irish?: A New Song, Called Harry Newell. Eight verse broadside, c 1800-30? No music or tune citation. Printed in Holloway and Black's Later English Broadside Ballads, I, #88, 1975."

See also these broadside copies of another form of the song (also quoted by Bruce) at  Bodleian Library Broadside Ballads:

Fancy lad


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: Emma B
Date: 16 Jan 04 - 08:01 PM

Thanks Malcolm for the blue clickies. I couldn't actually get onto Bruce's webpage but I presumed it was the same broadside as I found in John Holloways and Joan Blacks book (ISBN 0 7100 7855 2) as well
where it gives the song as Northern Irish and C18.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 16 Jan 04 - 09:33 PM

Olson also has the fragment from Hecht's Songs from Herd's MSS:

O wat, O wat and weary!
Sleep I can get nane
For thinking on my deary
A' the night I wak,
A' the day I weary,
Sleep I can get nane
For thinking on my dearie.

Olson's songs (Scarce Songs 1) "Jess Macpharlane" (1828), "Buff and Blue," also have a verse similar to the above (sleep I can get nane).


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: AYE WAUKIN' O (from Chambers)
From: Jim McLean
Date: 17 Jan 04 - 07:39 AM

In Chambers' Songs for Scotland Prior to Burns, 1862, 'There are various versions of this simple old song, but none so good as the following, which was taken from recitation many years ago, and inserted in a collection edited by Mr Robert Chambers in 1829. Burns furnished an improved version to Johnson's Museum'.

AYE WAUKIN' O

O, spring's a pleasant time,
Flowers o' ev'ry colour,
The sweet bird builds her nest,
And I long for my lover.

CHORUS: Aye waukin' O,
       Waukin' aye and weary,
       Sleep I can get nane,
       For thinkin' o' my dearie.

O I'm wat,wat,
O I'm wat and weary;
Yet fain I'd rise and run,
If I thought to meet my dearie.

When I sleep I dream,
When I wauk I'm eerie;
Sleep I can get nane,
For thinkin' o' my dearie.

Lanely night comes on,
A' the lave are sleeping;
I think on my love,
And blear my een wi' greeting.

Feather beds are soft,
Painted rooms are bonnie;
But a kiss o' my dear love,
Is better far than ony.

O for Friday night,
Friday at the gloamin!
O for Friday night!
Friday's long o' coming.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: GUEST,Julia
Date: 17 Jan 04 - 07:31 PM

I love the short version of the song just because it lets anyone relate to it. The lack of details leaves it open- it can range from a impatient cry of a passionate lover to a lament for the death of a spouse. I have recorded it on our new disc "Ae Fond Kiss" www.castlebay.net if anyone id interested.
Cheers- J


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: Chanteyranger
Date: 18 Jan 04 - 12:40 AM

So you're THAT Julia! I won't reveal my name, but you'd remember me as a former co-worker with your Maineiac brother, who also was in a "Danny Boy" skit with you at the Scottish harp workshop at Oberlin, '89.

Sorry for the drift, folks, but she can't receive PM's (why not sign up as a member, eh?).

Chanteyranger


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: GUEST,Philippa
Date: 02 Feb 04 - 03:15 PM

for the possibly related Gaelic song, see/hear a version at http://www.geocities.com/alltandubh/C/Cadal_Chan_Fhaigh.html


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: Rara Avis
Date: 03 Feb 04 - 09:33 AM

My copy of The Poetical Works of Robert Burns Edited From the best Printed and Manuscript Authorities, Hurst & Company Publishers lists the title as Simmer's A Pleasant Time. Under that it says Tune – "Aye Waukin, O" and a notation that "This is an old song, on which the poet appears to have made only a few alterations."


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: masato sakurai
Date: 03 Feb 04 - 09:41 AM

From John Greig's Scots Minstrelsie (1893):

"Simmer's a Pleasant Time" (Music by John Greig)

p. 48
p. 49
p. 50
p. 60


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: Jim McLean
Date: 03 Feb 04 - 05:56 PM

Interesting, Masato, but not a very pleasant tune (my opinion).


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye waukin' o
From: Felipa
Date: 07 Feb 04 - 02:07 PM

In the "Cambridge Edition" of The Poetical Works of Burns, edited by Raymond Bentman and published by Houghton Mifflin in 1974, not only is "Ay Waukin, O" included but there is a comment on it in the introduction:

"[Burns'] greatness lies not just in the range of subjects but in the enormous variety of tones, points of view, attitudes he can bring to a single subject. For example, the subject of a woman deserted in love, especially one who is left pregnant or with an illegitimate child. In earlier British literature she was treated with scorn, as an object of fun, as a moral lesson, as a cause for sentimental pity. Burns went beyond all these conventional postures.

"He usually assumes the pooint of view of the suffering girl. Indeed Burns almost always describes emotional states from the viewpoint of the person experiencing it. Most obviously, the deserted woman is lonely and longs for her lover to return:

Simmer's a pleasant time:
Flowers of every colour,
The water rins owre the heugh,
And I long for my true lover.

"In older treatments of the subject, and in Burns's possible source for theis song in Scottish folk songs, the traditional poet described nature as beautiful, then inserted a 'but' and contrasted it with her unhappiness. Burns leaves the contrast only implied. The firl appears too unhappily listless to bother with nice logical oppositions. Further, the function, so that the girl's mind seems just to wander from one observation to another, none of them meaning much to her. Yet the images serve to provide the reader with contrasts. The natural pleasantness, variety of color, movement of the water, oppose her sorrow, which has none of therm - numb, colorless, unvaried, unchanging."

(that isn't how I think of the song, but I'm not a literary critic)

The version sung by Ossian starts with the same verse, but is the song of a lovelorn man:

Her faither loues her weel,
Her mother lo'es her better,
And I lo'e the lass mysel'
Waes me I cannae get her.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye Waukin' O
From: GUEST,McWilliams
Date: 08 Nov 12 - 02:17 PM

Can anyone confirm or deny the meaning of "waukin" is a kind of song women sing when "working" in the tedious back and forth of working shorn wool into felt by hand. Waukin songs have a back and forth rhythm, suggesting the work, and length of the poem can be antiphonal, between the two who are working.

Reference is to the song, "Seinn O", one techno-dance version Mouth Music, Seinn O on Blue Door Green Sea label, another version Mary Jane Lamond, Seinn O sung in a slower antiphonal style.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye Waukin' O
From: Anne Neilson
Date: 08 Nov 12 - 04:26 PM

WauLking songs are the Gaelic work songs for the shrinking of a length of tweed (soaked in urine) -- usually done by eight or so women sitting around a long table and thumping the tweed onto the table before passing it on to the person on their left.

But "waukin" in the (Burns) song means waking, awake.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye Waukin' O
From: Allan Conn
Date: 09 Nov 12 - 02:42 AM

"Can anyone confirm or deny the meaning of "waukin" is a kind of song women sing when "working" in the tedious back and forth of working shorn wool into felt by hand."

Don't think it is about confirming or denying that. Scots hasn't got a single standard spelling system. You've simply got similar words with very different meanings. As Anne says the word you are talking about is completely different to what is in the song. A simple reading of the rest of the lyric shows that!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye Waukin' O
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 09 Nov 12 - 05:53 AM

Some options from Chambers Scots Dictionary
Jim Carroll

Waughy, adj. feeling faint or sick; wan, sallow. Cf.
Wauchie. Wauk, v, to wake ; to watch ; to watch over, Cf. Wake.
Wauk, v. to walk. Cf. Walk.
Wauk, adj. moist, damp. Cf.
Waugh. Wauk, Wauck, v. to full cloth; to render hard or callous; to beat, to thrash ; used of cloth, &c.: to shrink after wetting.    Cf. Walk.
Wauken, v. to awake ; to become animated ; to use violent language ; to awaken; to revive a dormant legal process ; to watch over.    Cf. Waken.
Wauken, ppl. adj. awake; disinclined for sleep.
Wauken, v. to chastise.
Waukening, n. the act of awaking, or of awakening; outrageous scolding.
Wauker, n. a watcher; one who watches clothes during the night.
Wauker, «. a fuller.
Waukerife, adj. wakeful. Cf.
Wakerife. Waukfere, adj. able to go about. Cf. Fere.
Wauking, Waukan, n. the act of watching; the night-watch kept over a corpse un- buried, or of one buried in resurrectionist
times, or over clothes, or over the ' fauld' or sheepfold.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye Waukin' O
From: GUEST,Philippa
Date: 09 Nov 12 - 12:56 PM

although I wrote before "Aye waukin' o has some similarity in tune and theme to a Gaelic song, O-ro chan eil cadal orm," I would like to correct myself: note the similarity to the song "Cadal cha dean mi"

Cadal Cha Dean Mi

lyrics and translation


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye Waukin' O
From: GUEST,McWilliams
Date: 15 Nov 12 - 05:41 PM

"completely different to what is in the song. A simple reading of the rest of the lyric shows that!"
Actually, Allan, not so simple, but thanks for responding.

Thanks to all, I am so glad to have found your site. I've traveled to bonnie Scotland a couple of times for extended stays. I love the music and the spirit of the people and the place.

I'll be staying a while in Ireland next summer. I will be in the pubs, learning more and singing along.

Anne McWilliams


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye Waukin' O
From: GUEST,Allan Conn
Date: 15 Nov 12 - 06:54 PM

"Actually, Allan, not so simple, but thanks for responding."

Ay fair dos - maybe I'm not taking enough account of non-Scots having the unfamilar words/spelling to deal with. It is pretty straight forward though if you really look at it. The text isn't really that obscure. The repeating theme throughout the song is that the person can't sleep at night because of thinking about a lover. They are always awake!

"Aye waukin' O,
Waukin' aye and weary,
Sleep I can get nane,
For thinkin' o' my dearie."

translates basically as

"Always awake O,
Awake always and weary
Sleep I can get none
For thinking of my dearie"

Apart from the spelling of "waukin" and "nane" which are close enough to the English to make an educated guess anyway the only unfamiliar thing may be the Scots word "aye" which means "always".


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Aye Waukin' O
From: nigelgatherer
Date: 04 Dec 16 - 06:08 AM

Jim McLean: "I arranged this song for a collection of Burns' songs recorded by Nigel Denver...and changed it slightly by repeating 'Aye Waukin' O' at the end of each chorus..."

Scabby Douglas: "...I never noticed that the repeated line isn't in the printed versions before..."

Although the repeated line isn't in either of the versions printed in the Scots Musical Museum, the repeated line features in a few older books. In George Thomson's Collection Vol.3 (1802) he added the line "O this love, this love!" to the end of each verse, "for the sake of the music."

In Wood's Songs of Scotland (1849), he gives the repeated line "Ay wakin', O!" at the end of each verse.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate
  Share Thread:
More...

Reply to Thread
Subject:  Help
From:
Preview   Automatic Linebreaks   Make a link ("blue clicky")


Mudcat time: 16 August 6:18 PM EDT

[ Home ]

All original material is copyright © 1998 by the Mudcat Café Music Foundation, Inc. All photos, music, images, etc. are copyright © by their rightful owners. Every effort is taken to attribute appropriate copyright to images, content, music, etc. We are not a copyright resource.