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Origins: Traveller and Romany influence on Trad

jimmyt 21 Nov 04 - 12:58 PM
Nerd 21 Nov 04 - 04:44 PM
Willa 21 Nov 04 - 05:24 PM
MartinRyan 21 Nov 04 - 05:52 PM
MartinRyan 21 Nov 04 - 05:54 PM
jimmyt 21 Nov 04 - 06:03 PM
MartinRyan 21 Nov 04 - 06:09 PM
Joybell 21 Nov 04 - 06:24 PM
Leadfingers 21 Nov 04 - 06:48 PM
M.Ted 22 Nov 04 - 02:32 PM
MartinRyan 22 Nov 04 - 03:35 PM
MartinRyan 22 Nov 04 - 03:39 PM
GUEST,Kathleen 12 Dec 04 - 06:25 PM
GUEST 12 Dec 04 - 08:39 PM
Liz the Squeak 13 Dec 04 - 01:19 AM
Weasel Books 13 Dec 04 - 02:57 AM
breezy 13 Dec 04 - 06:06 AM
Wusie 13 Dec 04 - 06:24 AM
pavane 13 Dec 04 - 09:51 AM
Gedpipes 13 Dec 04 - 12:40 PM
Tradsinger 13 Dec 04 - 02:03 PM
pavane 14 Dec 04 - 02:55 AM
Joybell 14 Dec 04 - 05:02 PM
GUEST 15 Dec 04 - 06:08 AM
pavane 15 Dec 04 - 06:37 AM
Joybell 16 Dec 04 - 04:27 PM
InOBU 16 Dec 04 - 09:02 PM
Azizi 17 Dec 04 - 05:43 PM
GUEST,greg stephens 17 Dec 04 - 06:40 PM
InOBU 17 Dec 04 - 10:09 PM
dianavan 18 Dec 04 - 10:12 PM
Weasel Books 19 Dec 04 - 07:45 AM
Joybell 20 Dec 04 - 05:19 PM
InOBU 21 Dec 04 - 06:00 AM
Liz the Squeak 22 Dec 04 - 02:18 AM
Manitas_at_home 22 Dec 04 - 03:55 AM
pavane 22 Dec 04 - 04:52 AM
Joybell 22 Dec 04 - 05:53 PM
Snuffy 22 Dec 04 - 06:44 PM
Joybell 22 Dec 04 - 07:45 PM
LadyJean 23 Dec 04 - 12:09 AM
GUEST,Bbarry e. scott 04 Aug 06 - 04:11 AM
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Subject: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: jimmyt
Date: 21 Nov 04 - 12:58 PM

I was just listening to a very plaintive tune on our local Celtic radio program and it occurred to me that although it was an Irish tune, it had lots of thematic material that seemed like influence from what sounds "Gypsy," to me. I just wondered of there is a blending of musical ideas from these other cultures in traditional Irish or English or other folk music. Just curious jimmyt


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Tra
From: Nerd
Date: 21 Nov 04 - 04:44 PM

Definitely from travellers in Ireland and Scotland (and England) and from Gypsies in England. I'd recommend the CD sets Here's Luck to a Man and From Puck to Appleby, as well as the CD of the Wiggy Smith family, on Musical Traditions records (www.mustrad.org.uk). But plenty of great singers and musicians were of travelling families: Stewarts of Blairgowrie and Fetterangus, Margaret Barry, Pecker Dunne, Paddy Keenan, etc. Martin Carthy and Norma Waterson and indeed all the Watersons are particularly fond of Gypsy and traveller music. So there is a lot there!


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: Willa
Date: 21 Nov 04 - 05:24 PM

Try to get hold of 'Folksongs of Britain and Ireland' Editor Peter Kennedy.
It has an interesting section on 'Songs of the Travelling People'


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: MartinRyan
Date: 21 Nov 04 - 05:52 PM

Here's a review of the excellent "Puck to Appleby" set.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: MartinRyan
Date: 21 Nov 04 - 05:54 PM

..and Here's the sleeve notes. Incidentally, one of the singers, Mikeen McCarthy, died just last week.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: jimmyt
Date: 21 Nov 04 - 06:03 PM

thanks, folks for the excellent first responses. I appreciate it. SOmetimes I wonder when I ask a question like that from America if you all in UK and Ireland just think it is the dumbest damn question in the world but I thought I would ask it anyway!


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: MartinRyan
Date: 21 Nov 04 - 06:09 PM

jimmyt

Nothing dumb about the question at all. Travellers/gypsies/tinkers were hugely important in the transmission of songs, in particular, in the British Isles (geographic, not political description). As to their influence on tunes, on the other hand, I wouldn't really know. There were certainly some very important fiddlers and pipers especially, in that community who had/have a big infulence on styles of playing those instruments.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: Joybell
Date: 21 Nov 04 - 06:24 PM

Thank you jimmyt, I find it an interesting question too. True-Love who has some Gypsy roots has always been very interested in their influence on music, and also on their way of blending in and taking up the influences of the country in which they travel. I believe it is difficult to unravel the two threads running there.
Thanks Willa. That book sounds interesting. Cheery-bye Joy


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: Leadfingers
Date: 21 Nov 04 - 06:48 PM

Its not that long ago that the majority of 'Travellers' in England were true Romany !! These days there has been an influx of Irish Tinkers , so the 'Traveller' label has slightly different overtones .
The influence on traditional song in England of the Travelling community is quite impressive !!


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: M.Ted
Date: 22 Nov 04 - 02:32 PM

Travellers and Tinkers are *not* Romany--


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: MartinRyan
Date: 22 Nov 04 - 03:35 PM

... so.... Traveller AND Rominy ifluence... makes sense!

Regards


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: MartinRyan
Date: 22 Nov 04 - 03:39 PM

..or would if I were more careful with my typing!

Regards


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: GUEST,Kathleen
Date: 12 Dec 04 - 06:25 PM

Mikeen McCarthy was a cousin of mine and I only recently found him just beforee he die Apart from his songs he has some wonderful stories of the Coffey, McCarthy and O'Brien families.
He will be sorely missed.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: GUEST
Date: 12 Dec 04 - 08:39 PM

Travellers and Tinkers are *not* Romany--

Prove It!


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 13 Dec 04 - 01:19 AM

There can be Romany tinkers and travellers, but not all travellers are Romany. I knew a family of true Romanies (Benham by name), who only travelled 4 weeks of the year. They had a site set aside for them, in a lovely spot they'd been using for the last few hundred years. There were other settled Romanies nearby, who had a built house, but spent more time travelling, because they were traders.

Likewise, I knew a travelling family, who, up until 1983 were living in Surrey; in the grip of surburban life, commuting every day, 2 weeks holiday in the South of France every summer, skiing in Austria in the winter.... They decided they wanted to take a year out, sold up, bought the oldest caravan still running and haven't been back to Surrey since!

Labelling people as one or the other isn't fair, and is the start of prejudice, misunderstanding and misinformation. It's like saying all banjo players are married to their cousins.

LTS


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: Weasel Books
Date: 13 Dec 04 - 02:57 AM

The Doran bros, and later Paddy Keenan, can't be underestimated in their influence on Uillean pipes.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: breezy
Date: 13 Dec 04 - 06:06 AM

Hey Liz! funny you should say that, but, I know this banjo player and guess who he is married to?


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: Wusie
Date: 13 Dec 04 - 06:24 AM

My moyher always called those travellers NOT Romany "Tinkers" and claimed them less clean/honest/trueblood. According to her, we came from the union of a Romany Princess????? and the son of a Laird, both of whom were disowned by their families. She also translated Diddicoi as gypsy who has "gone into brick".


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: pavane
Date: 13 Dec 04 - 09:51 AM

It is now believed that the true Romany were descended from travelling musicians from India/Pakistan, who left there maybe a thousand years ago and speak a language related to Hindi.

The various names they have acquired seem to have been adopted from countries through which they travelled

Gypsy = Egyptian
Romany = Rome or Romania?

Other 'Travellers' in the UK include 'tinkers' and many Irish families, who MAY or MAY NOT be of Romany descent.

Some may be more or less acceptable than others, but all the travellers who arrive in our area seem to think that they are within their rights to camp on any land they can get into, make as much mess as they like, (shall I post some photos?) and leave someone else to clear it up. Oh, yes, and drive off with whatever they can free with their bolt-cutters.

I have never had the desire to go and enquire as to whether they are 'Roma'.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: Gedpipes
Date: 13 Dec 04 - 12:40 PM

I'm surprised at how long it took for the 'common sense' notion of reality to hit this thread. 'Black people are lazy', 'Irish people are thick' and of course 'all travellers are thieves'.

all the best
Ged


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: Tradsinger
Date: 13 Dec 04 - 02:03 PM

I'm very interested in this thread as I have been looking at folksong as sung by Southern English gypsies for some years and have some ideas on the subject. I think that the gypsy contribution to English folksong is very underappreciated. Lots of the Sussex singers, including Pop Maynard, had frequent singarounds with travellers, and they learnt songs from each other. Fred Jordan learnt songs from travellers and I'm sure that a host of other traditional English singers did as well. What travellers/gypsies bring to the table is:

- a spontaneous attitude towards singing
- commitment to tone of voice, holding the audience and telling the story in a dramatic way
- preservation of lots of old ballads
- preservation of lots of old modal tunes

Whilst I would not necessarily encourage non-gypsies to sing like gypsies, I think there is a lot that one can learn from listening to recordings on Topic and Musical Traditions of gypsies and hearing how they don't just sing the songs but live them. There is an argument that the American crooning style is based on British traveller singing, and I hear similarities between the voice projection of some Appalachian singers and some traveller singers - they sing it high and sing it out.

I'm no expert on the scene in Scotland or Ireland but I have the impression that in the former at least, there is more respect for the traveller role as tradition bearer, and that some travellers such as Stanley Robertson are taken seriously as contributors to Scottish tradition as a whole.

Gypsy culture is little respected in England and is in fact actively discouraged. 10 years ago I could listen to good traveller singarounds at the gypsy horse fair at Stow-in-the-Wold in Gloucestershire, but these days all the pubs in town and most of the shops close for fair week. This is because of the (supposed) bad behaviour of some of the travellers at Stow. But when does crime prevention become prejudice?

I'm not saying that all gypsies are angels - far from it - and a minority are a social nuisance, but the same could be said of the behaviour of a lot of non-gypsies.

Another point to mention is that English gypsies themselves do not value their old (or 'folk') songs. Most want to sing C & W these days. However, one of my high spots of last summer was to spend time with the Orchard/Birch family at the Dartmoor Folk Festival, listening to their singing (mainly folk songs) and melodeon playing and watching their step dancing. Pure delight and great ambassadors for English folk music.

Sorry to advertise but I do know a bit about the subject and have put together a workshop on English traveller music at http://www.cmarge.demon.co.uk/gwilym/Stepaway.html for those who want to know more.

Gwilym


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: pavane
Date: 14 Dec 04 - 02:55 AM

For 'common sense' read 'long experience'.

I was careful not to state that it was 'gypsies' that were the problem, but just travellers of one kind or another. And yes, they all get a bad name from the actions of some. But the 'some' seem to be in the majority in our area. (They also all seem to be Irish.)


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Rominy influence on Trad
From: Joybell
Date: 14 Dec 04 - 05:02 PM

From the (admittedly little) I've read about the Gypsies, an interest in them because of True-love's roots, and a friend who lived with Gypsies for a time, I wouldn't be surprised if the musical influences went, more often, the other way. See the point Tradsinger makes about the C&W singing.
Gypsies do seem to be adept at taking up the music of the countries through which they travel, and in which they sometimes settle, and improving on it. Some of the Gypsy feel may then feed back again.

Having said that, I have wondered for some time now if there is a connection between the English May Day milkmaids and the dance of the milkmaids and Krishna in India. Black Sal and Sara Kali (and little pieces of coloured cloth). If there are connections are they Gypsy connections?

One point about the Gypsies is that our understanding of them and their traditions, musical and otherwise, doesn't matter to them. They know exactly who they are and what it is that makes them Gypsy. They seem not to be the least bit interested in proving anything.
Cheers, Joy


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Romany influence on Tra
From: GUEST
Date: 15 Dec 04 - 06:08 AM

Pavane:

Romany is from rom, Romany for man, or perhaps nearer romni, a woman.

Lots of useful stuff about the Romany language

I doubt if 'most' travellers have been 'true' Romany for a long time, perhaps never. There has always been this distinction between the ideal Gypsy who lives in his caravan on the heath and is the romantic repository of lore, wisdom, and mystery, and the nasty (real) people who are camped illegally in our nice posh estate, don't pay rates, why don't the police evict them etc. ad nauseam. It's worth reading Chris Hill's 'Freedom Against the Law' to see how Gypsies and vagabonds have been viewed in popular and official culture through the centuries.

The Gypsies played a huge role in the development of Klezmer (Jewish) music in eastern Europe- there was always two- way traffic between the cultures, and bands were often mixed. The Hungarian group Musikas did an excellent CD which concentrated on the music that modern Gypsies (descendants of those who survived the Nazi persecutions they shared with the Jews) thought of as particularly Jewish.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Romany influence on Trad
From: pavane
Date: 15 Dec 04 - 06:37 AM

Even the 'ideal, romantic' Gypsy has long been associated with theft and trickery (and poaching).

Laws are intended (one hopes) to provide all citizens with freedom to enjoy their own life and possessions without interference from others
(other than perhaps the Taxman)

Those who reject this principle, and whose activities infringe the freedoms of others cannot expect sympathy, whoever they are.

Alternative lifestyles are all very well in theory, but in practice they often involve a parasitic existence, being subsidised by taxpayers and the state.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Romany influence on Trad
From: Joybell
Date: 16 Dec 04 - 04:27 PM

Thanks Guest. True-Love will be interested in that link.

Another point to note about Gypsy music is that performing often plays an important part in their lives. As an income. It makes sense that, whatever they may play at their own gatherings, they become proficient, in playing the popular music of the area they are in. Of course the influences will go back and forth. There may also be differences between music played for "locals" and that played for tourists, in some places.
Bread-and-butter performers everywhere know that most audiences prefer fashionable, popular music. Tastes change fairly slowly. Joy


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Romany influence on Trad
From: InOBU
Date: 16 Dec 04 - 09:02 PM

THe Guest says much of what I'd say (nyes tuka, Prala or Sheya) As to the comment about Roma people or Travellers being a nusence, when did we kill off a third of you folks. Are Pavees (not "Tinkers" unless they are mettal workers, PLEASE) Romani people? Well there is controversy in that. Are Irish people Celtic? They speak a celtic language, and there is cultural drift. There is no shared genes between Celts, it was a cultural movement and the myth of Celtic invations of Ireland is just that, myth. Now, Romanichals in Britian and the US ARE a Romani people, the root of the language being Hindi, and they once were Rajaput. The Irish Travellers have for centuries intermixed culturaly with Romanichals and there has been a cross cultural drift, so an argument may be made that if Irish people are Celts, Travellers are a Romani people, at least related under the anti-Gypsy prejudices we often see at mudcat.
As to Jimmyt, great question and the thanks of a forgoten people to you, shem,.
Lorcan


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Romany influence on Trad
From: Azizi
Date: 17 Dec 04 - 05:43 PM

I'm also American and I know Nothing about this culture. That being said, I have found this thread interesting. I have some clarifying questions, though.

Joybell asked "..if there is a connection between the English May Day milkmaids and the dance of the milkmaids and Krishna in India. Black Sal and Sara Kali (and little pieces of coloured cloth).... are they Gypsy connections?"

Please excuse my ignorance, but what is the dance of the milkmaids and who are "Black Sal" and "Sara Kali"., and what is meant by the little pieces of coloured cloth? Are these part of the Morris dances or associated with May day celebrations?

Also, I am assuming from InOBU's response that he {or she} is a member of this ethnic {racial?; cultural?} group. InOBU, you wrote that the root of the [Romani]language [is] Hindi, and the Romani once were Rajaput.

Given this comment, what is your {and anyone else's}response to Joybell's question about the connection between these dances and Krishna in India?

Thank you.

asaid would you respond to Joybell's question regarding the connespnthWould hegr would be interesAnd I
's question about wuIf yetht


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Romany influence on Tr
From: GUEST,greg stephens
Date: 17 Dec 04 - 06:40 PM

As a small prqactical example, let me tell a small story, i was working with fiddler Kate Barfield in a primary school in Winsford< Cheshire(England) last year. It was National Litter or Environment Week or whatever, and we were doing an arts proect. So we'ld done some visula work, and then taught them to sing My Old Man's a Dustman.
Then the dinner bell went, everything stopped, and all the kids trooped off to have a break and eat. Except for two lads, eight-year olds maybe, with quite odd first names. And they proceeded to sing us some songs, which they said they had learnt for their fathers. Now, you may think the point of this sory is that they sang pricelss versions of old English folksongs. They didn't. They same some country crap. It was indescribably beautiful. We'd come in and sung an old song to them. So without prompting, they had stayed behind to sing some old songs to us that meant something to them. And the lads were indeed Gypsies. I've spent some time on and off with Gypsies over the years, and I think that little story sums up what I know about this subject very well. And the wheels on our car, incidentally, were still there when we went to drive away.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Romany influence on Trad
From: InOBU
Date: 17 Dec 04 - 10:09 PM

Thanks Greg, lovely story. Me mum's family on her dad's side was assimilated Lovari. I grew up, much more in my dad's traditions. I learned Romaness later in life. Few of the million Roma in the US know much about the Hindi roots of their culture, and much is being learned every day, mostly through linguistic anthropology. So, I don't know a lot about Indian Dance, but, one CAN see the inflence of Hindi dance in American Romani dance at the weddings and other events, open only to Roma, generally. One also sees Hindi dance steps espically in the hand movements in Flemenco, a Roma art form - brought to Spain by Roma ansestors of the present day Roma people called Gitanos.
All the best to all who are genuinely interested and open minded.
Lorcan


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Romany influence on Trad
From: dianavan
Date: 18 Dec 04 - 10:12 PM

I thought that the Travellers in Ireland spoke Shelta. If so, to which language group does it belong?


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Romany influence on Trad
From: Weasel Books
Date: 19 Dec 04 - 07:45 AM

I thought the Muzsikas CD was Jewish music from the Carpathians. Calling it Kleizmer is like saying Bluegrass is traditional Scots/Irish music. My ancestors (Jewish) happened to come from that same area BTW.


I think Roma in this context means Balkan, just as in Arabic and Turkish cultures the Byzantine lands were Rum. More likely than it reffering to Italy.

If anyone is interested I have a couple of old photos of Gypsies from Arab lands.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Romany influence on Trad
From: Joybell
Date: 20 Dec 04 - 05:19 PM

Azizi, My questions about Black Sal and the milkmaids were directed at any visiting Morris dancers, or anyone else who might have some solid information about the subject. Whether they have any place here, on this thread, is speculation on my part. I did start a thread about Black Sal but we didn't get very far. I have quite a bit about her and there is some information on the net. The best reference I have found is in a very well researched book about the Gypsies. I'll chase it up and give it if you want.
The little pieces of coloured cloth turn up in many countries, including all over the UK, in India, Africa and South America. Often they are tied to thorn bushes or "sacred" trees. The custom is so wide-spread it would be hard, I think, to find origins of the practice. You could find connections though and that interests me. Cheers, Joy


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Romany influence on Trad
From: InOBU
Date: 21 Dec 04 - 06:00 AM

Hi Joybell:
I usually hear Kali Sara as mentioned that way, inverted about, here in the US, and of course Ron Lee the Romani activist in Canada's wonderful band is called the same. My band, just by coincidence is called Sorcha Dorcha, Kali Sara in Gaelic. As to the question about the language Travellers speak, some people believe it to be the pre-celtic Irish language, and there are some words borrowed from Romani and changed, i believe, for example the Romani word for a bride is a Bori, the gammon word is Beor, I have heard Travellers call a dog a 'noosh' though the proper word in gammon is comra or something like that, (here in the US sometimes the gaelic word madra is used as well) but back to noosh, Manush is the Romani word for fellow, niether Rom - the word for man, spesificly Roma man, or Gyzho, non Romani man, so I believe Travellers calling their dog, fella, one of the guys is the evolution of the word noosh. You can hear the word in the song Big Pat from Boleneer on one of the recordings of Traveller music made a few decades ago.
Best wishes to all,
Romaleh Savaleh, Arrac sa gyzhen,
and a merry christmass to all*
Lor

*Ps happy Ramadan, Dawali, Chanuka, Kwansa, not belthaine or samhain, the other mid winter pagan thingee... what is it called merry that too... and merry and happy happy void to the nillests among us...


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Romany influence on Trad
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 22 Dec 04 - 02:18 AM

Tradsinger - if you are interested in Southern English Romany music and traditions, look up the works of Mally Dow. Married to singer Nick Dow, she came from a Romany family, and often visited (and was I think, related to) the family I knew in Dorset.

She wasn't well last time I heard about her, it would be interesting to find out what happened to her.

LTS


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Romany influence on Trad
From: Manitas_at_home
Date: 22 Dec 04 - 03:55 AM

Joybell,

A character called Black Sal accompanies the Hastings Jack-in-the-Green. In a previous thread on mudcat someone pointed to a gypsy festival in the south of France where a female saint is celebrated. This saint is depicted with a black face - I don't think it's coincidence!

InObu,

Isn't manouche used of the travellers in northern France and Belgium? Django Reinhardt was manouche.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Romany influence on Trad
From: pavane
Date: 22 Dec 04 - 04:52 AM

It would not be unlikely for the Romany language to have some similarities with Celtic, since they are both branches of the Indo-European group. It is believe to be closely related to Hindi, which is descended from Sanskrit, which itself is related to Greek and Latin.

For example, the Irish Ra and Indian Raj are related, and also related to Royal and Regal. The equivalent English word, King, comes from a different branch of the family.

BTW
The group of languages descended from PIE (Proto-Indo-European)
includes many other dead languages such as Hittite, as well as living languages from northern India, Iran (Persian), and almost all of Europe. Within Europe, only Basque, Finnish and Hungarian do not belong to the group. One (extinct) member of the family even found its way to China.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Romany influence on Trad
From: Joybell
Date: 22 Dec 04 - 05:53 PM

Hello Manitas, Yes that was me, I believe. I've been wondering about a Gypsy connection between the English Black Sal and the Sara Kali/Kali Sara of the South of France. I once met an English man, living here in Australia, who was a Morris Dancer, who had studied the Gypsy influence on English traditions. He agreed a connection was likely. I've never found much real evidence, though. There are Black Virgins/Saints all over the place and today when you start talking about Female deities every one has an opinion.

Just by the way, and I'm not claiming anything here, my great-great grandmother was a "Sarah Black". She was from Belfast.

Lorcan, Happy everything to you too. My True-Love has a similar relationship to the Gypsies, I think. His father's grandmother was a Gitan who married a German Gadjo who joined the group as a Romany Rye. He was hanged for horse theft, so the story goes. True-love has several aunts with very dark skin and Gypsy appearance.

The book to which I referred is: The Gypsies by Jean-Paul Ciebert. Published by Penguin in 1961.
It's an excellent book by a writter who has no agenda. Well researched and unpretentious. He has quite a bit to say about Sara Kali. Well worth a look. Cheers, Joy


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Subject: Add: The Old Song (Jack on the Green)
From: Snuffy
Date: 22 Dec 04 - 06:44 PM

I don't know if this song has anything to do with it, but there's a possiblity that Calico Sal may be Kali Sara. We also have Jack in/on the Green and Black Bess rather than Black Sal. What do you think?

THE OLD SONG (JACK ON THE GREEN)

If you listen to me, I will sing of a spree
That happened a week or two back.
Concerning a gal they call Calico Sal
And a fellow named Bendy-Legged Jack.
Tara tara taralalala tarararalalalala.

Then came the day, they were decked out so gay
Jack wore his velveteens
Sal wore a dress that was worn by Black Bess
When she capered with Jack on the green
Tara tara taralalala tarararalalalala.

Home they went, on punishment bent.
They swore they'd pitch into the grub
They had plenty of scran in an old brown pan
And a plate of pea soup in a tub
Tara tara taralalala tarararalalalala.

Sung By Tom Smith, Thorpe Morieux, Suffolk. Recorded 1985-87 by John Howson. Veteran Tapes VT103 Songs Sung in Suffolk, Vol 3


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Romany influence on Trad
From: Joybell
Date: 22 Dec 04 - 07:45 PM

Snuffy, That's great. Thank you. You little beauty! Calico Sal! Worth a thought indeed.

Black Sal, for what it's worth, was a character in the very popular book by Pierce Egan, "Life in London" (to give it it's short title). It was published in the 1820s. It would seem that she was already well known. In the book she does a dance with a Chimney sweep called Dusty Bob. His name may also have been known. She is dressed like a milkmaid, so could be connected with the milkmaids of the Mayday celebrations who dance with chimney sweeps. There are referrences to them from earlier than 1820, I seem to recall.
Egan made Sal "Afican Sal" but that may not mean much except a change of fashion, I'm thinking.

Egan's book became a very popular play as well. Any earlier characters he may have used, and changed, rapidly could have been eclipsed by his work.

So - Snuffy, Any thoughts on Dusty Bob?

Black Bess - hmm, I'll take a look in my files. Off to look for "Calico Sal" and Bess. I feel another treasure hunt coming on. Sadly I can't afford a copy of Egan's book. Have to travel to Melbourne and read it, decked out in white gloves, in the library. The web has a bit but you can't beat doing your own reading quite yet. Cheers and thanks, Snuffy. Joy


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Romany influence on Trad
From: LadyJean
Date: 23 Dec 04 - 12:09 AM

Perhaps, someone can give me a little information. I spend new year's eve with friends, one of whom claims to have some gypsy heritage. Her father was German, and her mother came from Russia.
At midnight, on New Year's Eve, she pours salt, wine and silver coins over her front doorstep. Is this a Romany tradition?
She lives in a bad part of town, (The police stopped her husband from firing his muzzle loader at midnight, because the neighbors returned the salute, and they used bullets!) But no one EVER touches those silver coins.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Traveller and Romany influence on Tra
From: GUEST,Bbarry e. scott
Date: 04 Aug 06 - 04:11 AM

Ref sopng


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