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ballads/tunes about ladies of the night

AnneMC 18 Apr 04 - 06:19 AM
Allan C. 18 Apr 04 - 06:31 AM
Leadfingers 18 Apr 04 - 06:38 AM
Dave Hanson 18 Apr 04 - 07:19 AM
cetmst 18 Apr 04 - 07:39 AM
greg stephens 18 Apr 04 - 07:43 AM
cetmst 18 Apr 04 - 09:33 AM
Flash Company 18 Apr 04 - 10:16 AM
Gareth 18 Apr 04 - 10:43 AM
Uncle_DaveO 18 Apr 04 - 10:58 AM
Uncle_DaveO 18 Apr 04 - 11:01 AM
GUEST,Tunesmith 18 Apr 04 - 11:10 AM
JennyO 18 Apr 04 - 11:17 AM
GUEST,Lindswidder 18 Apr 04 - 11:47 AM
Herga Kitty 18 Apr 04 - 12:00 PM
Nigel Parsons 18 Apr 04 - 01:24 PM
SINSULL 18 Apr 04 - 01:29 PM
open mike 18 Apr 04 - 01:32 PM
Francy 18 Apr 04 - 01:34 PM
Singing Referee 18 Apr 04 - 01:38 PM
GUEST,Henryp 18 Apr 04 - 01:53 PM
Backstage Manager(inactive) 18 Apr 04 - 01:59 PM
Backstage Manager(inactive) 18 Apr 04 - 02:02 PM
GUEST,Kenny B Sans Kookie 18 Apr 04 - 03:40 PM
GUEST,M'Grath of Altcar 18 Apr 04 - 04:53 PM
Stewie 18 Apr 04 - 06:36 PM
Stewie 18 Apr 04 - 06:41 PM
cetmst 18 Apr 04 - 07:16 PM
Joybell 18 Apr 04 - 07:17 PM
GUEST,Lindswidder 18 Apr 04 - 07:22 PM
Joe_F 18 Apr 04 - 09:46 PM
HuwG 19 Apr 04 - 04:05 AM
GUEST,Obie 19 Apr 04 - 05:09 AM
Kevin Sheils 19 Apr 04 - 05:49 AM
Gurney 19 Apr 04 - 06:19 AM
Hrothgar 19 Apr 04 - 06:19 AM
GUEST,JTT 19 Apr 04 - 06:24 AM
GUEST,Lanfranc at the orifice 19 Apr 04 - 06:53 AM
Dave Bryant 19 Apr 04 - 06:57 AM
Dave Bryant 19 Apr 04 - 07:56 AM
Snuffy 19 Apr 04 - 08:58 AM
Desert Dancer 19 Apr 04 - 02:10 PM
Snuffy 19 Apr 04 - 03:07 PM
Jen M 19 Apr 04 - 03:44 PM
Rapparee 19 Apr 04 - 03:57 PM
GUEST,Obie 19 Apr 04 - 05:05 PM
akenaton 19 Apr 04 - 05:25 PM
rich-joy 19 Apr 04 - 10:03 PM
Macha 20 Apr 04 - 07:09 PM
Snuffy 20 Apr 04 - 08:12 PM
GUEST,DavidfromSydney 21 Apr 04 - 08:06 PM
Fiona 22 Apr 04 - 09:43 AM
GUEST,Jaze 22 Apr 04 - 01:13 PM
HuwG 23 Apr 04 - 10:17 PM
Scoville 23 Apr 04 - 10:23 PM
GUEST 24 Apr 04 - 08:25 PM
Naemanson 24 Apr 04 - 08:34 PM
Uncle Jaque 24 Apr 04 - 08:47 PM
Scoville 24 Apr 04 - 10:10 PM
Hrothgar 25 Apr 04 - 09:56 PM
Acme 25 Apr 04 - 11:12 PM
cetmst 26 Apr 04 - 07:47 AM
Snuffy 26 Apr 04 - 09:12 AM
Joe_F 26 Apr 04 - 05:12 PM
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A Wandering Minstrel 27 Apr 04 - 08:11 AM
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Bat Goddess 13 Nov 04 - 09:45 AM
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Charley Noble 14 Nov 04 - 10:14 AM
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Bill D 14 Nov 04 - 11:39 AM
Charley Noble 14 Nov 04 - 12:26 PM
Herga Kitty 14 Nov 04 - 01:00 PM
GUEST,j 14 Nov 04 - 01:12 PM
Genie 14 Nov 04 - 02:48 PM
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Herga Kitty 14 Nov 04 - 06:37 PM
frogprince 14 Nov 04 - 07:00 PM
el_punkoid_nouveau 15 Nov 04 - 02:51 AM
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pavane 16 Nov 04 - 07:42 AM
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Subject: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: AnneMC
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 06:19 AM

I have a small repertoire of folk songs about 'ladies of the night'
eg Kitty Kane, Mary Danced with Soldiers, Maggie Maggie May.
Does anyone know of any more ballads about the lives/fates of such women - not necessarily bawdy songs.
Thanks,
Anne


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Allan C.
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 06:31 AM

"Louise" comes to mind. Or did you only want traditional songs?


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Leadfingers
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 06:38 AM

Les Sullivan - Ex Navy UK singer songwriter has a nice one about a sailor who gets framed by a lady of the night and kills her in revenge- Good song but not sure where you could get hold of it.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 07:19 AM

Dicey Riley.
eric


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: cetmst
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 07:39 AM

Just off the top of my head on a Sunday morning:
House if the Rising Sun
Ship of the Evening (My Home on the Green Mountain Side)
The Fire Ship
Rolling Down the Mountain
It's the Same the Whole World Over
Winnipeg Whore
Redlight Saloon
Careless Love
Let Her Sleep Under the Bar
She's More To Be Pitied Than Censured
Epitaph on Sally Salisbury (Catch, John S. Smith)
More later as I come across them - Charles


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: greg stephens
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 07:43 AM

Charles: I'm not familiar with "More later as I come across them". Could we have the lyrics, please?


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: cetmst
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 09:33 AM

Greg, keep your eye on this thread:
Cocaine Bill and Morphine Sue - she sells her stuff for a fatal dose
Mademoiselle From Armentieres - some of many verses
Girl With the Blue Velvet Band
Old Old Story
Magdalene Laundry
Sisters of the Cross of Shame
The Whore on the Snowy Crust
Why Are You Weeping Sister
Ballad of Cactus Nell
The Ruined Maid - Thomas Hardy

Query - Is Lily of Lily, Rosemary and the Jack of Hearts of the profession ? How about Frenchie in "Destry Rides Again" singing "See What the Boys in the Back Room Will Have" ?


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Flash Company
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 10:16 AM

Aggie Bell, She does it well!, Vera Aspey has recorded it somewhere.

FC


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Gareth
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 10:43 AM

The Ballad of Cactus Nell ?? Is this the Texan version of Esquimo Nell ?

And what Rugby player could forget "The Harlot of Jerusalem"

Gareth


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Subject: Lyr Add: Poor Lil
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 10:58 AM

Poor Lil

There was a little girl
She was a beauty!
She lived in a house
Of ill-reputee
The men would come
From miles away
Just to see Poor Lil
In her negligee!
Cho:
Poor Lil, boomp de-ahda
De-ahda dahdah
Poor Lil, boomp de-ahda
De-ahda dahdah

Now, deep in the depths
Of her dishonor
Lil felt the hand
Of the Lord upon 'er
She said, "Dear Lord
"I do repent
"But that's still gonna cost ya
"Just seventy-five cent!
Cho:
Poor Lil, boomp de-ahda
De-ahda dahdah
Poor Lil, boomp de-ahda
De-ahda dahdah
So ends the story of..
Poor Lil!


DRO
Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 11:01 AM

My apologies. The DT has a superior version of this. If I had looked, as I should have, I wouldn't have put this in.

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST,Tunesmith
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 11:10 AM

"Pleasures of the Harbour" by Phil Ochs.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: JennyO
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 11:17 AM

AnneMC, I am lucky enough to live with John Warner, the writer of Kitty Kane. It is on an album called Pithead in the Fern, and is sung by Margaret Walters. Here is Margaret Walters' web site
It's an excellent song. I can't find an MP3 of it, but here are the words:

12. KITTY KANE
© John Warner 8/11/93

I came up the Thomson with thousands of others,
When Walhalla's gold worked its wild, shining spell.
I was young, I was pretty, I called myself Kitty,
I offered the best jewels a woman could sell.
A length of fine velvet in well fitting burgundy,
Tight round the curves where a man's eyes would fall,
Lace at the edges and eyes full of laughter,
Oh young Kitty Kane was the pride of them all.

Chorus

I might take a walk by the wild Thomson River
Where the Mountain Ash rise in the soft, misty rain,
There's gold in the range and there's gold in the memories
Of the lady of pleasure they call Kitty Kane.

* As the wealth from the mining flowed into the valley,
I moved from a shanty up to a hotel.
I'd seen enough squalor, I saved enough silver
To make me a place where I'd play the game well.
Pregnancy, injury, theft and brutality
Threatened and scarred me, again and again,
But in black lace and silver, I waltzed with the miners,
And shone in their vision, for I'm Kitty Kane.

The publican brought a piano from Melbourne,
I could tell you right now, it was never in tune,
But the work-weary diggers came crowding to hear it
When Samson would play in the late afternoon.
On nights when Walhalla lit up like a fire,
And the miners were roaring some boozy refrain,
There would always be eyes lit with lust and desire,
And bright gold for evenings with young Kitty Kane.

There were schemers and sailors and bearded old diggers,
Whose tough, hairy hides had the gravel ground in,
Young men far from home who still needed a mother,
And sad, furtive parsons who needed to sin.
Rough, drunken brutes with the manners of cattle,
Who let me lie bleeding and shaking in pain,
I've served them their drinks while my bruises were healing,
And I laughed and I shone, I was still Kitty Kane.

I've heard the men singing down at the piano,
That youth, it soon passes, and beauty will fade,
But I gave them their pleasure when I was past forty,
It's the light in the eyes made me queen of my trade.
Though Walhalla now is all merchants and farmers,
Whose wives see in me what they think of as shame,
I'll die in this valley with fine, singing memories,
My name's Kitty Kane, I was best in the game.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST,Lindswidder
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 11:47 AM

There's a lovely song I learned when living on a narrowboat on the Oxford Canal, the chorus of the cleaned-up version was:

Boaty boaty *spit in the Cut
And wipe your *nose on a mopstick

(in reality was *shit and *arse)

the verses concerned ladies that the boatman would encounter as he travelled the canals (the Cut) in the couse of his working life, such as:

I knew a girl in Linslade town
Wipe yer nose on a mopstick
Who drops 'er kecks for half-a-crown
Wipe yer nose on a mopstick

Boaty, boaty spit in the cut
Spit in the cut, spit in the cut
Boaty, boaty spit in the cut
And wipe yer nose on a mopstick

the further he travels, the more expensive it seems to be, and the last verse ends with the moral of the story

"the moral of my story's plain
'tis quicker and cheaper to stay on the train.."

I have this song, and others, on an old LP of canal songs called "Straight From The Tunnel's Mouth"


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 12:00 PM

Leadfingers

The good news is that Les has recorded his song for his forthcoming CD - I was round at El Greko's yesterday adding harmonies.

Kitty


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 01:24 PM

Not trad or folk, but well known

Ruby; Don't take your love to town - Kenny Rogers
Roxanne - Police
Gypsys, Tramps & Thieves - Cher

Nigel


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: SINSULL
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 01:29 PM

Who's Gonna Hold Her Hand (She Walks The Streets In A Yellow Gown)


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: open mike
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 01:32 PM

there was a thread on songs about "fallen women" last year...
you might check for it..


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Francy
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 01:34 PM

The Ferench Prostitute by David Olney


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Singing Referee
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 01:38 PM

"Hello and goodbye" by George Papavgeris on his album "Silent majority" A day in the life of a Lady of the Night; about the dreams that haunt us long after they have become impractical and unattainable.

You'll find the lyrics on his website http://www.folk4all.net

You'll have to catch a gig or buy the album for the tune though.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST,Henryp
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 01:53 PM

I can add "The Sisters of Mercy" by Leonard Cohen, commonly referred to as Laughing Len. If you listen to his words, he does in fact show a great sense of humour!


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Backstage Manager(inactive)
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 01:59 PM

"Tecumseh Valley" by Townes Van Zandt, "Streets of Calgary" by David Francey, "Let Him Roll" by Guy Clark and "Sammy's Song" by David Bromberg all spring to mind.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Backstage Manager(inactive)
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 02:02 PM

As does "Whore's Lament," performed by Hedy West, and "Bad Girl's Lament," performed by Rosalie Sorrels, both variants of "St. James Hospital."


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST,Kenny B Sans Kookie
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 03:40 PM

Aunt Clara,
Way Down in Lamorna,
La Fiacre


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST,M'Grath of Altcar
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 04:53 PM

Next (Au suivant) By Jacques Brel, concerns a mobile Army brothel in an unspecified conflict. "Next" is the call of the lady within the truck!!!


I sing the song from time to time but one has to weigh up the audience very carefully before singing it. It can offend even the most broad minded listener. I was at a session just a couple of weeks ago and considered doing it but it was a lunchtime session and well..... it just did not seem right. So it went unsung that day.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Stewie
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 06:36 PM

And there's Allan Taylor's 'the ladies are the loving kind' from his wonderful 'the traveller' album which, according to Allan in the 'Morning Lies Heavy' thread currently on foot, the dreaded Bulmer has actually reissued on CD, but without paying any royalties!

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Stewie
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 06:41 PM

Another good'un that just came to mind is Billy Joe Shaver's 'Street Walking Woman' from his bluesy 'Salt of the Earth' album.

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: cetmst
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 07:16 PM

Cactus Nell is not Eskimo Nell transplanted to Texas nor is she the unfortunate of "The Lonesome Death of Cactus Nell". She comes to a better end than either. From "Bawdy Ballads and Lusty Lyrics", 1950, ed. John Henry Johnson, author not given:

THE BALLAD OF CACTUS NELL

Cactus Nell, in the gaudy gown
Of a dance hall jade in a border town,
Had tried her wiles on a man who seemed
To read her smiles as he stood and dreamed;
He paid no heed to the tell-tale leer
Of the dance hall queen as she lingered near,
But turned and walked to another place
Removed from the taunt of her painted face.

The she-thing paled with a tang of hate
At the slight implied by his measured gait;
Each step seemed telling as words might say
He despised her breed and the tinseled way;
And she raged within as the dance hall clan
Observed the move of the silent man,
And she made a vow that the man would pay
For the public slight in the dannce hall way.

A whispered word, and a hurried plan
Was told in the ears of Diamond Dan,
Who hitched the guns in the belt he wore,
As he wandered out on the dance hall floor;
He stopped a bit as an idler would,
Quite close to the place where the stranger stood,
And Nell with the hate of her creed and race,
Stepped close and spat in the tall man's face.

Then silence fell and the place was still -
Like the stage scene set for a sudden kill -
As the stranger stood and calmly viewed
The leering face of the woman lewd;
Then his eyes were turned till they rested on
Her consort near with his six-guns drawn;
And a grin crept up on his thin cold lips
And his hands rested calm on his holstered hips.

"I reckon," he said, "there has been a day
When a mother loved you in a mother's way,
An' I reckon she prayed as her baby grew
That she'd never be a thing like you;
An' so for her, an' the child she bore,
I have only pity and nothing more,
But as for you" - turning to Diamond Dan -
"I'm callin' you, hombre, man to man."

The call was quick as a lightning flash,
And the shots rang out in a single crash,
And Diamond Dan slumped down to the floor
As the stranger walked toward the open door;
And Cactus Nell stared into empty space,
The blood all gone from her throat and face,
And deep in her heart a something stirred,
And her pale lips moved, but no one heard.

Well, the fiddles still squeal in the border town,
And the faro wheels spin as the chips flop down,
And the old-timers look in vain for Nell,
One-time queen of the road house hell;
But stories are afloat, and the card sharps say
She's living in Butte in a humble way;
Married ? Sure, and they say her man
Is the man who called the play on Diamond Dan!


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Joybell
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 07:17 PM

"Young Sailor Cut Down in his Prime"
is quite specific about the ladies of the night who cause his downfall. The other songs in this group eg "Young Girl Cut Down in her Prime", and others of "The Unfortunate Rake" type are not.

"The Black Velvet Band" suggests she is a pick-pocket but she may well have been a lady of the night.
                                       Joy


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST,Lindswidder
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 07:22 PM

Now down in sweet Texas where the bullshit lies thick
One hand on my saddle, one hand on my dick
'twas there I met Charlotte, the girl I adore
Charlotte the Harlot, the cow-punchers' whore

(there are many verses, and the last one tells us that her funeral procession was 40 miles long! I have the song on a very old tape of "Bawdy Western Ballads" by Oscar Brand


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Joe_F
Date: 18 Apr 04 - 09:46 PM

"I once was a maid, tho' I cannot tell when" -- Part of "Love and Liberty" by Robert Burns

"Ring Dang Doo"

(From memory -- title unknown; TTTO "Wabash Cannonball":)
Way up in Pennsylvania
On a dark and stormy night,
I went down to the whorehouse,
Where the lights were shining bright.
I walked on up the steps
And knocked upon the door.
My knock was quickly answered
By a neatly half-dressed whore.
She wore a red kimono
That opened down the front,
So I could see the golden hairs
That hid her dirty cunt.
She took me by the hand
And led me up the stairs.
I took old Pete right in my hand
And rammed it thru those hairs.
The stuff it was a-coming,
The feeling it was grand,
When I woke up on an army cot
With a discharge in my hand.

"Bang Away, Lulu"

"The Finest Fucking Family in the Land"

"La Pierreuse"

"Tricks Ain't Walking"

Unfortunately, I forgot to check the DigiTrad *before* writing all this, and I'll lose it if I check now. (Why?)


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: HuwG
Date: 19 Apr 04 - 04:05 AM

Not strictly a member of this profession but:

Lili Marlene.

Neither the original German nor translated English lyrics suggest that Lili was engaged in any sort of cash transaction, but the German version does suggest that the soldier singing it knew that Lili would transfer her affections as soon as he was posted to some distant and dangerous front.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST,Obie
Date: 19 Apr 04 - 05:09 AM

Son Of Hickory Hollers Tramp (Merle Haggard)
This Bed Of Roses (Stattler Bros)


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Kevin Sheils
Date: 19 Apr 04 - 05:49 AM

The various versions of Dublin City/Spanish Lady?


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Gurney
Date: 19 Apr 04 - 06:19 AM

Once a blues, now more familiar to trad jazzers.

'Flatfoot floozy with the floy-floy.' Can't remember the official title.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Hrothgar
Date: 19 Apr 04 - 06:19 AM

Sailor Town


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST,JTT
Date: 19 Apr 04 - 06:24 AM

The Holy Ground (the Holy Ground is or was a prostitution area in Cork, I think).


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST,Lanfranc at the orifice
Date: 19 Apr 04 - 06:53 AM

I've always rather liked this one. Harry Chapin doesn't get much of a mention hereabouts, but I rate him as a songwriter.

Mercenaries
by Harry Chapin
Originally found on album Dance Band on the Titanic, 1977 and the Bottom Line Encore Series, 1998.


It's a slow motion night
In the hot city lights
Past time when the good folks
Are snoring in bed
On a loose-jointed cruise
To recolor your blues
With illegal notions alive,
Alive in your head

You are back from some war
That you've been fighting for
Some old blue blood bastard
In a dark pinstripe suit
and the word from your loins
Has your mind in your groin
And your back pocket burning with blood
Blood money loot

So, you walk past the glow
Of the flicker-picture shows
Where the raincoat men wait
For a child to come by
And the women in doorways
Who have nothing to say
'Cause your money is talking
To the ones that you would try

She owns the block
With the dead pawnshop clock
She's the answer to dreams
That you pay to come true
She's got no heart of gold
But that's not what she's sold
She just sees herself doing what she
What she has to do

And she's all that you're hoping
As her coat falls open
Give her bread and she leads you
To a bed on the floor
Where for ten million years
And through ten billion tears
The armies of bootmen have marched
Back from their wars

She's in that state of grace
Before time finds her face
With a mind of old wisdoms
And a body still young
And she tastes as sweet
As a child's chocolate treat
Before the butts and the whiskey
Had wasted the taste of your tongue

Play the music again
Of the grey-stubble men
That groaning blue symphony
Moans evermore
And you watch as she fakes it
And of course you just take it
She's better than others
You never paid money for

You've used up your booty
The girl's done her duty
The turnstile has turned
And you learn you are done
You're back on the street
Joining fresh marching feet
You see more soldiers coming
And your girl chooses one

And the medic has brought
Shots for what you have caught
Your leave is all over
You're back on the line
And the joke in the trenches
Of the hot blooded wenches
And the next thing that you'll do
When they next give you the time.

And you're back in your army
Back shedding red blood
And you dream of the girl
As you sleep in the mud
And you know you'd swap with her
If the deal could be made
'Cause you'd rather be working at love
Love as your trade

Alan


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Dave Bryant
Date: 19 Apr 04 - 06:57 AM

The woman in Kipling's "The Liner she's a Lady" sounds as though she wouldn't be too worried about what the time of day was, as long there was "trade" around - "They've got to do their business first, and make the most they can!".

You can find the words and my tune for it here.   The late Peter bellamy also set the words to music.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Dave Bryant
Date: 19 Apr 04 - 07:56 AM

Hrothgar - which "Sailortown" are you referring to - is it the one one that John Conolly sings ?

Personally, I like Lester Simpson's "Polly on the Shore" - could that be what you're referring to ?


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Snuffy
Date: 19 Apr 04 - 08:58 AM

Serafina


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 19 Apr 04 - 02:10 PM

I object to the inclusion of "Aunt Clara" above, I like to think she was just lucky in love.

(No poetry intented, but it's kind of cute, ain't it?)

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Snuffy
Date: 19 Apr 04 - 03:07 PM

Mother didn't share your opinion, Becky!


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Jen M
Date: 19 Apr 04 - 03:44 PM

My Mother's favorite, we learned it at Girl Scout Camp--was Fascinating Witch-I have no idea where the song originated.
I wish I was a fascinating witch,
I'd never be poor, I'd always be rich
I'd live in a house with a little red light,
I'd sleep all day and I'd work all night,
Once a year I'd take a vacation,
Leave my customers to their frustration,
Once in a while, I'd go hog wild,
And have myself an illegitemat child,
I wish I was a fascinating witch,
Instead of a gosh darn virgin.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Rapparee
Date: 19 Apr 04 - 03:57 PM

The old song that starts

"Casey Jones was a son of a bitch
Parked his engine in a whorehouse ditch...."


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST,Obie
Date: 19 Apr 04 - 05:05 PM

orrrrrrrr...................
Casey Jones was a son of a whore
Drove his locomotive through the whorehouse door
    Etc., etc.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: akenaton
Date: 19 Apr 04 - 05:25 PM

June Tabors version of "She moves among men", about the life and loves of a barmaid,says it all about the emotional differences between men and women.One of the saddest of songs.....


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: rich-joy
Date: 19 Apr 04 - 10:03 PM

The Ladies Are The Loving Kind (Allan Taylor)

Daisy Hill (Dick Feller)

Cheers!

R-J


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Macha
Date: 20 Apr 04 - 07:09 PM

Would My Lagan Love fall under this catagory?


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Snuffy
Date: 20 Apr 04 - 08:12 PM

DID SHE FALL OR WAS SHE PUSHED??


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST,DavidfromSydney
Date: 21 Apr 04 - 08:06 PM

Turning of the Tide - Richard Thompson


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Fiona
Date: 22 Apr 04 - 09:43 AM

On Martyn Bennetts album GRIT he has Jeanie Robertson singing 'The Bonnie Wee Lassie Who Never Says No' all wrapped round with a thumping dance beat, the finished song is called 'Ale House' and wonderful stuff it is too!


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST,Jaze
Date: 22 Apr 04 - 01:13 PM

San Francisco Mabel Joy -written by Mickey Newbury


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: HuwG
Date: 23 Apr 04 - 10:17 PM

Another Jacques Brel classic that should have occurred to me instantly:

Amsterdam


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Scoville
Date: 23 Apr 04 - 10:23 PM

I always assumed "Ella Speed" was one, although nothing in the song actually says it.

"Little Sadie", and Hazel Dickens' "Tomorrow's Already Gone"


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST
Date: 24 Apr 04 - 08:25 PM

Dave Van Ronk does a great little a capella number on his "Going Back to Brooklyn" album. It's called "The Whore of San Pedro."

"The whore of San Pedro
Is older than God,
And her beard tumbles down
to her tits.
With one single bump
of her ponderous rump,
she'll grind your poor pecker to bits."

And there's a second verse that I forget....


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Naemanson
Date: 24 Apr 04 - 08:34 PM

Note: If you run across an old song with the phrase "Ladies Of The Town" then you can be sure it is refering to ladies of the night. That is the old term.

There is a wonderful book about the murder of a young whore in New York in 1824 (I think). The book goes into detail on the trade as well as the life of the young woman in question and her murderer. I found it in a library but it is a very well written book.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Uncle Jaque
Date: 24 Apr 04 - 08:47 PM

I learned "Charlotte The Harlot" from a Texas Fella while in the Army back in '68, and posted what I knew of the several verses here about 4 years ago.

I ain't a-gonna post 'em agin, neither!

That first verse is a little different than the one I heard, but pretty much in the same vein. It all goes downhill from there!

It ain't the sort of thing that any God-fearing Baptist has any business whatsoever singing out loud anywhere attall!

Well; not sober anyhow...

Alas; poor Charlotte! {B^{(~

UJ


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Scoville
Date: 24 Apr 04 - 10:10 PM

Naemanson--do you mean Patrician Cline Cohen's the Murder of Helen Jewett: the Life and Death of a Prostitute in Nineteenth-Century New York, about the murder of Helen Jewett in 1836? My brother got me a copy at Half-Price Books or somewhere for $1--which I think was extremely cheap--and it's very, very, interesting.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Hrothgar
Date: 25 Apr 04 - 09:56 PM

You're right, Dave - "Polly on the Shore."


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Acme
Date: 25 Apr 04 - 11:12 PM

Venezuela ("I met her in Ven-e-zu-e-la. . .") I don't find my tape of it but I thought Dyer-Bennet sang it. Or McCurdy.

As far as McCurdy goes, he did a good job of cornering the market. Look for his Blood Booze 'n Bones and Sin Songs, Pro and Con. I'll list the contents. You'll find a smattering of songs on the subject, but you'll find lots of references.

Sin Songs: PRO

Jolly boatsman
How happy is she
Roving gambler
I once had virtue
Gambler's song
Good boy's song
Good old mountain dew
Ballad of a young man
Rye Whiskey

Sin Songs: CON (second side)
Tobacco is an Indian weed
Three pretty fair maids
Young people who delight in sin
Poor Polly, the mad girl
Gambling on the Sabbeth day
She plays the game
John Adkin's farewell
Frozen Charlottie (this is a personal favorite!)
An address to all concerning death

Blood Booze 'n Bones
Darlin' Cory
Josie
Dublin murder ballad
Four nights drunk
Cowboy's lament
Kentucky moonshiner
No more booze
Farewell to grog
Portland County jail
Banks of the Ohio
John Hardy
Pig and the inebriate (another favorite!)
Stackerlee
Lamkins
Yo Ho Ho (The derelict)
Lulu
Drunkard's doom (boy, does this one get you!)

Then there are McCurdy's four Daliance albums. But the message there has more to do with sex and pleasure than the business prostitution.

A lot of cheating songs out there--and those are on the whole very funny. As I type this I'm listening to Dyer-Bennet and "Charleston Merchant" is on. "I'm goin' off to sea and I've come to get my chest. . ."

I have a Smithsonian collection around here some where with a whole bunch of blue (not to be confused with "The blues") songs and again, a smattering of songs like "If I can't sell it I'm sitting on it."

SRS


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: cetmst
Date: 26 Apr 04 - 07:47 AM

Yes, Richard Dyer-Bennet recorded "Venezuela", also recorded by Burl Ives, Susan Reed, Belafonte and Cyril Tawney. Can't find anything on the origin other than 'Trad'


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Snuffy
Date: 26 Apr 04 - 09:12 AM

Venezuela was written by JJ Niles, although he tried to pass it off as trad at first


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Joe_F
Date: 26 Apr 04 - 05:12 PM

Desert Dancer: The lines

But the boys in the firehouse draped it in black,
And the ball team wore mourning that week.

suggest that Aunt Clara was, at any rate, widely available to bachelors before she left town.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 26 Apr 04 - 06:03 PM

Hmm, yes, I'd forgotten that verse, Joe! It's been a while, and I have a tendency to try to give people the benefit of the doubt (maybe indulging in some selective recollection as a result).

~ Becky


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: A Wandering Minstrel
Date: 27 Apr 04 - 08:11 AM

Seriously
Sally Racket

and perhaps not so seriously, Eddie Walkers
"Candy are you really a Lady"


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST,dick feller/ daisy hill
Date: 13 Nov 04 - 08:51 AM


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 13 Nov 04 - 09:45 AM

Late again, late again.

How about "Dicey Riley"? Not the drinking one, the prostitute one. (Which I learned from Debbie McClatchy and she said, I think, she learned from Dominic Behan.)

"One woman put them all to shame,
Only one was worthy of the name,
And the name of the same is Dicey Riley."
. . .

"The balance paid, their looks all fade,
Out of all that brave brigade,
Ah the heart of the raul is Dicey Riley."

I, too, like to think Aunt Clara was just lucky in love . . .

Linn


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Deckman
Date: 13 Nov 04 - 09:54 AM

"Star of Bannock" comes to mind. This is an wonderful ballad with a haunting melody. It might not be considered so much a song of "ladies of the night" as it is a murder ballad. CHEERS, Bob


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST,winnie
Date: 13 Nov 04 - 01:52 PM

"Cindy's Crying" by Tom Paxton is one of my favorites, very poignant.
I can't remember all the words off the top of my head, but the first verse:
   Cindy's crying but it ain't no use
   She's got a habit she can't turn loose
   She's started (grabbing?) every man she meets
   She's gonna be a hooker down on Bleeker Street....

Good tune; makes the connection between prostitution and addiction.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Genie
Date: 13 Nov 04 - 11:28 PM

Here's a song I was taught in (a Southern Baptist) college:

Sadie, Sadie, she was a cutie,
Lived in a house of ill reputie,
And all the men would come to see
Sadie, Sadie, Sadie on her bed of ease.

Now Sadie, Sadie, her form grew thinner
Due to the lack of vitamins in 'er.
She started taking Fleischmann's yeast,
But all in all her form decreased.

Now Sadie died and she went to Heaven,
Charged St. Peter a buck-ninety-seven.
St. Peter didn't like what she had to sell,
So Sadie, Sadie, Sadie went straight down to Hell.

Now, Sadie, Sadie, she's six feet under,
Went to Hell like a bolt of thunder!
The Devil liked what she had to sell,
So Sadie, Sadie, Sadie's makin' money in Hell!

The tune/rhythm is sort of generic blues/honky-tonk. I have no idea of the source of the song.

Anyone else familiar with it?

Genie


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Subject: She Was Poor (It's The Same The Whole World Over)
From: Genie
Date: 13 Nov 04 - 11:47 PM

In the DT:
She Was Poor, But She Was Honest

It may also be listed as "It's The Same [Syme] The Whole [The 'Ole] World Over."


The words, as I learned them from a Theo Bikel record, are:

She was poor, but she was honest,
Victim of the squire's whim.
First he loved 'er, then he left 'er,
And she lost 'er nyme to 'im.

Then she went awy to London,
There to 'ide 'er grief and shyme,
But she met another squire
An' she lost 'er nyme agyn.

See 'er ridin' in a carriage
In the park an', oh, so gay,
Where the nooks an' nobby persons
Come to pass the toim o' day.

See the little old world cottage
Where the ayncient parents live
Drinking the champyne she send 'em --
But they never can forgive.

In the rich man's arms she flutters
Like a bird with broken wing.
First 'e loved 'er, then 'e left 'er,
But she 'asn't got a ring!

See 'im in the 'ouse of Commons
Myking laws to put down crime,
While the girl that 'e 'as ruyned
Toils awy thru muck an' slime!

See 'er on the bridge at midnight
Crying, "Farewell, blighted luv!"
Then a scream! A splash! Good 'eavens!
What is she a-doin' of?!

When they fished 'er from the river,
From 'er clothes the water wrung,
And they thought that she 'ad drownded,
But the corpse got up an' sung:

"IT'S THE SYME THE 'OLE WORLD OVUH --
IT'S THE POOR WHAT GETS THE BLYME!
IT'S THE RICH WHAT GETS THE PLEAS-YOO-UH!
AIN'T IT ALL A BLOOMIN' SHYME!!?"


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Charley Noble
Date: 14 Nov 04 - 10:14 AM

Genie-

Hi! Best wishes to you all in Portland-West.

The "Sadie" song you posted above is probably better known as "Poor Lil" or "Lil, Poor Lil" with lyrics in ROLL ME OVER, Oak Publications, pp. 70-71, which probably dates back to the 1930's.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST,frog
Date: 14 Nov 04 - 11:33 AM


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST,frogette
Date: 14 Nov 04 - 11:35 AM

Lady of the Night by Les Sullivan is available if required on Echoes of Mingulay and HergaKitty sings one about Kitty Cain thats good too


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Bill D
Date: 14 Nov 04 - 11:39 AM

a more elaborate version of "Poor Lil" which is very close to what I have been singing for 30 years...My 'version' in parenthesis)

Her name was Lil, and she was a beauty, (Lil, se was a famous beauty)
And she lived in a house of ill reputy.
The gentlemen came from far to see (menfolk can from miles around)
Airy-fairy Lillian in her deshabillé.(just to see Poor Lil in her low-cut gown)
Airy-fairy Lillian in her deshabillé.

Now Lil was comely, Lil was fair,
And she had lots of yaller hair. (she had lovely golden hair)
But she drank too much of the Demon Rum,
And she smoked hashish and o-pi-um.
And she smoked hashish and o-pi-um.

And day by day her cheeks grew thinner
From insufficient protein(s) in her.
She grew deep hollows in her chest
And she had to go around completely dressed.
And she had to go around completely dressed.

Now clothes may make a girl go far,
But they have no place on a fille de joie .
And Lillian's troubles all began (stared when)
When she concealed her abdomen.
When she concealed her abdomen.

So Lillian went to the house physician
For him to prescribe for her condition.
He said, "You have, as we doctors say, ("You have got", the doc did say)
"Perni-ci-ous a-ne-mi-ay."
"Perni-ci-ous a-ne-mi-ay."

***He offered to her for its view (I think this verse was added somewhere..it feels wrong)
His penthouse on Park Avenue.
He came to see her every day,
And he shot her with his big X-Ray.
And he shot her with his big X-Ray.***


So Lil took treatments in the sun, she drank Scott's emul-si-on.
And she ate Mr. Fleischmann's yeast, (3 times daily, she ate yeast)
But still her clientle decreased.
But still her clientle decreased.

For you must know Lillian's clientelly
Rested largely (chiefly) on her belly.
She rolled it like the deep Pacific?
And that was something calorific.
And that was something calorific. (never liked this line, but have not improved it)

As Lillian lay in her dishonor
She felt the hand of the Lord upon her. (the Devil's hand upon her)
She cried,"my sins I now repents"
"But Satan, it'll cost you fifty cents!"
"Satan, it'll cost you fifty cents!"

(this last verse doesn't seem to me to 'fit' here- I have heard it, in some form, mixed in above, without the last line. I prefer to do without it)

Now Lillian underwent baptism,
And she adopted mysticism.
And every night when she went to sleep
She prayed the Lord her soul to keep
High above Park Avenue.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Charley Noble
Date: 14 Nov 04 - 12:26 PM

Frogette-

As Jenny-O in one of the earliest posts mentioned John Warner's "Kitty Kane" is one of the best ballads commemorating the survival of one of these intrepid ladies of the night, in the goldfields of 19th century Australia.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 14 Nov 04 - 01:00 PM

Charley

Yes, Kitty Kane is a wonderful song, and I sing it with the second verse that was omitted from Pithead in the Fern, because it's such a great verse - "Pregnancy, injury, theft and brutality threatened and scarred me again and again, but in black lace and silver I waltzed with the miners and I shone in their vision, for I'm Kitty Kane".

Les Sullivan's Lady of the Night is pretty good too. But I'm biased, because I sing the harmony for it on Echoes of Mingulay.

Kitty


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST,j
Date: 14 Nov 04 - 01:12 PM

The tinker Nancy Miles

'by the age of twenty-one, a hundred men had been and gone '

Though my other half claims the men were simply rejected suitors :(


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Subject: ballads about ladies of the night / Yellow Rose
From: Genie
Date: 14 Nov 04 - 02:48 PM

How about the original "Yellow Rose Of Texas?"

I imagine her story is discussed somewhere in the mudcat forum, but I didn't find that song mentioned here.

G


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Subject: ballads about ladies of the night - Yellow Rose
From: Genie
Date: 14 Nov 04 - 03:00 PM

There's some discussion of the history of the "yellow Rose" and of the song in this thread:
LYR ADD: Yellow Rose Of Texas

Her identity, and especially her status as Santa Ana's girlfriend or as a camp follower, are still subjects of dispute. But I think YROT deserves mention in this thread, if only because the legend persists that she was either or both.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Snuffy
Date: 14 Nov 04 - 06:29 PM

And a very different take on "Lady of the Night", also by Les Sullivan on "Echoes of Mingulay" is Only Natasha Knows.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 14 Nov 04 - 06:37 PM

Snuffy

For another, different, take, you should hear Les sing Jennifer Pettifer!

Kitty


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: frogprince
Date: 14 Nov 04 - 07:00 PM

Oscar Brand recorded the deeply raunchy servicemans song "Miss VD of Guam", which I heard from a record in the barracks shortly before being order to Guam for a year and a half. I've tried every-which-way to look it up online, but can find only a reference to the resultant obscenity trial. I can remember fragments, if anyone wants to stoop that low.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: el_punkoid_nouveau
Date: 15 Nov 04 - 02:51 AM

Then there is always "The Girls Of Glossop Road" - a tale of the red light district of Sheffield, and one man's fall from grace...

epn


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 15 Nov 04 - 02:34 PM

Well, I suppose since many cleaning ladies work at night, I could put forward the song "Sadie, the cleaning lady".


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: pavane
Date: 16 Nov 04 - 07:42 AM

I found this one in the Bodley collection - the tune is well known as a Morris dance

Beaux of London City


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST,jimp
Date: 16 Apr 11 - 06:17 AM

Put on your old red panties
That once were your Aunties
And let's go wrestle in the hay
And, while the bee's make honey,
Let your ass make money,
In the good old-fshioned way.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST,John in Cornwall
Date: 16 Apr 11 - 05:22 PM

How about David Campbell Slightly Faded
lyrics here Slightly Faded


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 17 Apr 11 - 04:52 AM

"Rum and Coca-Cola" and "Yankee Dollar" both calypsos, deal with WWII prostitution in Trinidad.


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Subject: Lyr Add: Fan Mi Solja Man
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 25 Jun 11 - 08:39 PM

Fan Mi Solja Man
(Traditional. From "Mango Time: Folk Songs of Jamaica)
1. Sake-a coolie-man bangle,
Sake-a coolie-man bangle,
Sake a coolie-man silver bangle,
Oh, gyal yu characta gone!

(Chorus)

Fan mi solja man, fan mi,
Fan mi solja man, fan mi,
Fan mi solja man, fan mi,
Oh gyal yu characta gone!

2. Whe' di use yu a haul-up, shawl-up,
Whe' di use yu a haul-up, shawl-up,
Whe' di use yu a haul-up, shawl-up,
An' yu characta gone!

(Chorus)

3. Whe' di use yu a lace-up, stace-up,
Whe' di use yu a lace-up, stace up,
Whe' di use yu a lace-up, stace-up,
An' yu characta gone!

(Chorus)
4. Gyal wha mak yu so faas and facey,
Gyal wha mek yu so faas and facey,
Gyal wha mek yu so faas and facey,
An' yu characta gone!

(Chorus)

5. Since di baby come bawn
An' him daddy gone a Contingent,
Ev'rybody come bawl out sey
"Gyal yu characta gone!"


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Big Ballad Singer
Date: 26 Jun 11 - 12:02 AM

"Go To Sea Once More" has to do with spending one's fishing pay on whores. One verse has the whores laughing at the poor slob who wasted all his money and was forced to ship out again.

"Cathouse Blues" was recorded in 1974 as a demo for the Buckingham Nicks album. Stevie Nicks gave it the old smoky-voiced, Calamity-Jane treatment. Lyrics below:

Song Title »
Cathouse Blues
    Authors »
Stevie Nicks

    Year Written »
1974

    Lyrics »

I got the Cathouse Blues...
I wear the highest
of high heel shoes
Whoa, darling, it's hard to be surrounded
Where the women are lazy,
And the men are rude

I got the cat walk, don't talk blues...
I creep on cat's feet,
I don't speak loose
Yourself in velvet,
Forget we ever met...
I got the closed in,
The cathouse blues...

Blue gray eyes that say...
I guess you don't remember
I guess that I was younger
Touche, the cat sleeps alone,
Sleeps only in the sun
But she'll awake at night
And she'll be gone...

Singing the cathouse blues
I need some new red velvet shoes
I'm still a dreamer's fancy...
They say I'm pretty classy...
I'm just a feline silky cat come true...
I'm just a feline silky cat come true...
I'm just a feline silky cat come true
Yeah.

Here's a link to it:
The Cathouse Blues


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: nickp
Date: 26 Jun 11 - 04:57 AM

Painted Ladies - Richard Thompson (sometimes introduced as a song about a species of butterfly...)


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: lynnc
Date: 11 Nov 11 - 04:50 AM

Does anyone know anything about the origins of "Poor Lil", that would be Lil the famous beauty who lived in a house of ill reputy?

There are 2 or 3 versions earlier in this thread, the lyrics I know are very close to what BillD posted. I've always associated it with New Orleans. Google turned up nothing but mudcat references and not many of those.

just wonderin

Lynn


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 11 Nov 11 - 05:00 AM

JEAN AND DINAH
Mighty Sparrow (Slinger Francisco) 1956

1. Well, the girls in town feeling bad,
No more Yankees in Trinidad.
They goin' to close down the base for good,
Them girls have to make out how they could.
Brother, it is now they park up in town,
In for a penny, and in for a pound,
Believe me it's competition for so,
Trouble in the town when the price drop low.

CHORUS: So when you bounce up Jean and Dinah, Rosita and Clementina,
Round the corner posin', bet your life it's somethin' they sellin',
And when you catch 'em broken, you can get 'em all for nothin',
Don't make no row, the Yankees gone and Sparrow take over now.

2. Things bad is to hear them cry,
Not a sailor in town, the nightclubs dry,
Only West Indians like me or you,
Go in to get a drink or two.
And as we have things back in control
Ah seekin' revenge with me heart and soul,
Brother when ah spread the news around
Is to see how them cavemen come in to town.

(Chorus)

3. When the Yankee was in full swing,
Just imagine how I was suffering,
Mavis tell me straight to me face,
She find I too fast and out of place.
No, no, no, they will start to fret,
Money or not poor Sparrow can't get,
With the Yankees they have it cool,
Calypsonians too hard to fool.

(Chorus)

4. It's the glamour boys again,
We are going to rule in Port-of-Spain,
No more Yankees to spoil the fete,
Dorothy has to take what she get,
All of them who used to make style,
They takin' two shilling for a smile,
No more hotel to rest your head,
By the sweat of thy brow thou shalt eat bread.
(Chorus)


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Kenny B
Date: 11 Nov 11 - 04:12 PM

Fronm the well revered Scottish comedian Hector Nicol
to the tune of "Put on your old grey Bonnet"

Put on you're old grey bustle
Get youre fanny out and hustle
Tomorrow the rent is due
If you run into a bookie
Who is lookin for his nookie
We can pay the butcher too


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Charley Noble
Date: 11 Nov 11 - 09:21 PM

lynnc-

I think you'll find that "Pool Lill" goes back to the late 19th century. My mother picked it up in the 1920's but it was well seasoned by then.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 12 Nov 11 - 12:38 AM

Unless I have missed them in this long thread, we don't seem to have had ref to the Barrack-St/Peter-St/Patrick-St/Ratcliffe-St family.

Nor to The Magdalene's Lament {I think Frankie Armstrong calls it The Whore's Lament on one of her albums}, about the imprisoned prostitute who attributes her fall to gang-rape ("Four & twenty of Geordie's men Kissed* me against my will-o"), enjoyed her brothel ('tavern-house'*) days but is now being ill-treated in prison ("Now I'm in the correction-house And whipped into my turn-o"), and looks forward hopefully to a reformed & respectable married life on her release ("Then I'll be a wedded wife When my forty days are done-o").

~Michael~

*In this one, I find of particular interest the euphemisms like 'tavern-house' when a brothel is clearly meant, and 'kissed' for an obviously rather more intimate form of congress!


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 12 Nov 11 - 12:45 AM

... and what about "Rag Fair" as sung by Frank Purslow and Peter Bellamy? ~~ like Barrack St &c, a distinguished member of the familiar sailor-robbed-by-whore hardluck-story group.

~M~


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Bernard
Date: 12 Nov 11 - 06:36 AM

I'm really quite surprised no-one has yet mentioned Bernard Wrigley's trilogy of songs about 'Knocking Nelly'...!

The Ballad of Knocking Nelly
Knocking Nelly and the Sixty-Niner
Knocking Nelly and the Mothman


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Bernard
Date: 12 Nov 11 - 06:37 AM

I do believe that got me in at 100!!!


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Paul Davenport
Date: 12 Nov 11 - 08:26 AM

Surprised me to discover that nobody's mentioned; 'The Lady of Pleasure', a splendid broadside romp which goes admirably to the morris tune?er, 'Ladies of Pleasure'.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: PHJim
Date: 12 Nov 11 - 09:46 AM

Fred Eaglesmith's High Heels In The Rain

Sometimes she goes by with a man on her arm
She don't even look our way
With her hair pulled back and those bright coloured eyes
And those high heels that she wears in the rain.

Si Khan's Backroom Lady

They all ask her if there's anyone who's been a better lover
She says,"NO, You're the best Sweet Baby."
But she always breaks out laughing when they close the door behind them
There ain't no way to fool the backroom lady.


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 09 Oct 12 - 08:51 PM

(This is one of my favourites..)

THE SONG OF THE BRASS KEY

(From "The Desert Song")

Words by Oscar Hammerstein II
Music by Sigmund Romberg

1. On the streets of Spain,
Love lies at your feet,
Love's adventure sweet
Lives on the streets of Spain.

2. Ladies beckon you,
With a little key,
Follow and you'll see
Just where they beckon you.

3. So, if you see me
Slyly swinging my key,
Soon I will see you
Shyly following me

4. I will bring to you,
All the joy I know,
If you do not go
Then I will sing to you:

CHORUS: There is a key, a key to my heart,
If you can but find the door;
Only for me, for me to impart,
This secret of Loveland lore.
There is a golden gateway,
That you can open straightway.

Just follow me, and soon you will see
One kiss is the key to more!

So are we only common slaves?
We don't agree
You have only lived in caves.
Up on your hill, you
Can wait until you hear:

(Chorusx2)


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 09 Oct 12 - 09:03 PM

Interestingly, the name of the character in the operetta who sings this song is Clementina-- the same as one of the women mentioned in Jean and Dinah. Was that a common name for women in Spanish-speaking countries from 1900 onwards?


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Bobert
Date: 09 Oct 12 - 09:25 PM

Here's one from out in left field:

"Broken Hearted Savior" by Big Head Todd and the Monsters...

B~


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: GUEST,Jood
Date: 10 Oct 12 - 04:40 PM

Slightly more subtle there's always the Three Drunken Maidens, my favourite version - by The Silly Sisters- Maddy Prior and June Tabor

There were three drunken maidens
Came from the Isle of Wight
They drunk from Monday morning
Nor stopped till Saturday night
When Saturday night did come me boys,
They wouldn't then go out
These three drunken maidens,
They pushed the jug about.

Then in comes bouncing Sally,
Her cheeks as red as blooms
Move up me jolly sisters,
And give young Sally some room
For I will be your equal
Before the night is out
These four drunken maidens,
They pushed the jug about.

There's woodcock and pheasant,
There's partridge and hare
There's all sorts of dainties,
No scarcity was there
There's forty quarts of beer, me boys,
They fairly drunk them out
These four drunken maidens,
They pushed the jug about.

But up comes the landlord,
He's asking for his pay
It' a forty pound bill, me boys
These gals have got to pay
That's ten pounds apiece, me boys,
But still they wouldn't go out
These four drunken maidens,
They pushed the jug about.

Oh where are your feathered hats,
Your mantles rich and fine
They've all been swallowed up,
In tankards of good wine
And where are your maidenheads,
You maidens frisk and gay
We left them in the alehouse,
We drank them clean away


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Subject: RE: ballads/tunes about ladies of the night
From: Joe_F
Date: 10 Oct 12 - 07:46 PM

Four Old Whores seems not to have made it into this thread yet.


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