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History - BBC's 'Singing Together'

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GUEST,Santa 30 Aug 07 - 05:32 AM
Edmond 30 Aug 07 - 05:02 AM
Herga Kitty 29 Aug 07 - 08:58 PM
Malcolm Douglas 29 Aug 07 - 08:31 PM
SussexCarole 29 Aug 07 - 06:41 PM
Herga Kitty 29 Aug 07 - 03:55 PM
GUEST,voxchops 29 Aug 07 - 02:11 PM
Edmond 21 Aug 07 - 10:40 AM
Fliss 16 Aug 07 - 04:50 PM
Herga Kitty 16 Aug 07 - 01:00 PM
Big Al Whittle 16 Aug 07 - 09:25 AM
GUEST,Betsy 16 Aug 07 - 03:36 AM
Steve Shaw 15 Aug 07 - 07:15 PM
Penny S. 15 Aug 07 - 06:10 PM
Dave Roberts 15 Aug 07 - 02:30 PM
GUEST,Jan 15 Aug 07 - 01:33 PM
LindsayInWales 15 Aug 07 - 09:20 AM
Anne Lister 15 Aug 07 - 09:08 AM
GUEST 15 Aug 07 - 06:25 AM
GUEST,edthefolkie 15 Aug 07 - 05:05 AM
Llanfair 15 Aug 07 - 04:30 AM
Splott Man 15 Aug 07 - 04:17 AM
Betsy 14 Aug 07 - 06:20 PM
Penny S. 14 Aug 07 - 03:54 PM
Herga Kitty 14 Aug 07 - 03:29 PM
GUEST,Jan 14 Aug 07 - 03:12 PM
GUEST,Alun 08 Feb 07 - 02:00 PM
Liz the Squeak 21 Jan 07 - 05:07 AM
GUEST,Jim Martin 20 Jan 07 - 09:25 PM
Dave Roberts 20 Jan 07 - 07:04 PM
An Buachaill Caol Dubh 20 Jan 07 - 11:17 AM
bubblyrat 19 Jan 07 - 06:47 PM
DMcG 19 Jan 07 - 05:04 PM
DMcG 19 Jan 07 - 05:02 PM
danensis 19 Jan 07 - 04:17 PM
The Borchester Echo 19 Jan 07 - 02:20 PM
Leadfingers 19 Jan 07 - 01:22 PM
GUEST,ruth fletcher 19 Jan 07 - 01:16 PM
Mo the caller 12 Apr 06 - 06:35 AM
Mo the caller 12 Apr 06 - 06:22 AM
Big Al Whittle 12 Apr 06 - 03:49 AM
Dave Roberts 12 Apr 06 - 03:43 AM
DMcG 12 Apr 06 - 02:55 AM
DMcG 12 Apr 06 - 02:54 AM
Dave Roberts 12 Apr 06 - 01:16 AM
BusyBee Paul 11 Apr 06 - 04:05 AM
Purple Foxx 11 Apr 06 - 02:40 AM
Big Al Whittle 11 Apr 06 - 01:33 AM
GUEST,Jane F 10 Apr 06 - 11:05 PM
DMcG 10 Apr 06 - 04:25 PM
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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: GUEST,Santa
Date: 30 Aug 07 - 05:32 AM

I'm with IanC, sitting in the school hall listening to the radio. And I remember Westering Home too. Good songs survive. I recall doing the barn dance, when there still was maypole dancing - this would be at (Old) Hartlepool around 1954, but the radio listening in the hall may have been a little later as well. I think the memory of Westering Home in a songbooklet comes from that (1956?) time.

We didn't do Music and Movement in those days, thank god. What a horribly awful pretentious prospect. If you want to teach dance, teach dance.


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Edmond
Date: 30 Aug 07 - 05:02 AM

Thank you all for that - I thought my Miss Pringle shtik was original.

An example of the 'collective Folk memory' in action ?

I remember 'Donkey Riding', too. The primary school I attended - St Custard's, Cotton Lane, Withington - put on a concert for Coronation year. The childrens' choir sang 'Donkey Riding' first, and we were commanded to smile whilst singing it. Imagine the lyric being mangled by 40 -odd grimacing bratten.

'Donkey Riding'was followed by 'Greensleeves', that ghastly 'Alas my love' version, where we were exhorted to smile, but not as broadly as we smiled in 'Donkey Riding'. This isn't drift (at least I don't think so :-) - we learned 'Donkey Riding' from 'Singing Together'.

Bryn Pugh


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 08:58 PM

Thank you Malcolm for setting the record straight (as ever) - Kitty


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 08:31 PM

Not Fred Hamer, but Frank Purslow and John Pearse. It appeared under several variant titles at different times, starting out as Rap A Tap Tap: English Folk Songs Miss Pringle Never Taught Us (Folklore Records, 1960); they later re-issued it as Bottoms Up: English Soak Songs for Fools. It was issued under license in the USA, imaginatively (and rather misleadingly, as the content was mild enough) re-titled Unexpurgated Songs of Erotica: Witty Ditties of Passion and Pleasure: A Naughty, Bawdy Songfest of English Erotica (!) Finally, Peter Kennedy put it out as one of his FolkTrax cassettes (later CDRs) as Bottoms Up: Folk Songs Miss Pringle Never Taught Us.


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: SussexCarole
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 06:41 PM

Magical memories of Singing Together (1950's) in our Victorian built primary school. The wireless was wheeled in on a trolley & ceremoniously plugged in. I've collected many books from Singing Together & Music & Movement. One of the first songs I remember singing was Donkey Riding.. no one ever thought to tell me when I was 10 that a donkey was a work engine......I always pictured a lion and a unicorn standing on the back of a donkey! We've just put Donkey Riding into our songs...shades of the past!


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 03:55 PM

Voxchops - what is this about your being sung to sleep with Kitty?

Edmond - thanks for confirming that there was a list of songs Miss Pringle never taught us! I think I heard once that Fred Hamer had made a recording of them.

Kitty


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: GUEST,voxchops
Date: 29 Aug 07 - 02:11 PM

hello, I have just found this site after searching for my old books to find the lyrics for The Marigold "Twas east North East so near the line etc" I know I have them somewhere. Anyway I thought some of you might be interested that I have just recorded 3 songs: Kitty of Coleraine, Moon of Mamaku and Sleep my Little Baby, on my lullaby CD Lullaby Island. You can hear clips of the songs and get complete lyrics for those if you go to www.lullabyisland.com. My brother used to sing me to sleep with Kitty, i had no idea it too was a Singing Together song. My mum learn't The Marigold from me and want to sing it at her folk club in yorkshire. I loved it!!!


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Edmond
Date: 21 Aug 07 - 10:40 AM

I remember "Darby Kelly" and the "Uist Tramping Song" - that must habe been 1953 or 1954. This was my first introduction to "The Keeper" and "Sweet Nightingale".

I never realised until much later, when I heard Cyril Twwney singing "Sweet Nightingale" on some poxy TV programme, that it was a Folk Song.

It was always my ambition to record a disc of bawdry entitled "Songs Miss Pringle didn't teach us".

Chance'd be a fine thing . . .

Bryn Pugh


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Fliss
Date: 16 Aug 07 - 04:50 PM

Brings back memories of primary school in Shrewsbury '54-'60. In the 3rd year juniors our singing teacher formed us into a little choir and trotted us round the church fetes and we sang all sorts of folk songs.

I taught infants in the early '70s and did Time & Tune with them. I have a collection of old booklets somewhere in the loft. I liked the term we did about snow and russian folk songs... something about The Great Bear...

Its really where my playing and singing started... entertaining children.
fliss


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 16 Aug 07 - 01:00 PM

Betsy - that was the Drummer and the Cook, I think? ("Pot" had a different meaning in those days!)

Kitty


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 16 Aug 07 - 09:25 AM

yes I remember the Lucerne one - there was a picture of a man's head with one of those alpine hats, with a bit of rope round the brim, and a mountain in the background

From Lucerne to Weggis town
Hol da he! Hol da ho!
with no shoes or stockings on
Hol da he! da ho!


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: GUEST,Betsy
Date: 16 Aug 07 - 03:36 AM

A song we had to sing from that era, had a chorus "With her one eye on the pot and the other up the chimney with a Bow ,wow, wow,...."
it fascinated me, the storyline had me rivetted - Jeez ! they don't write em like that anymore.


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 15 Aug 07 - 07:15 PM

My memory's far too hazy to be of much use on this thread, but I recall singing lustily, at least some from the BBC booklet, "What's in There? (Gold and money...)," "Charlie is me Darling," "Oh No John" (not the rude verses I'm sure!) and "Bonnie Dundee."   There was also a round that our teacher would torment us with by making a randomly-selected four of us sing it "solo," called something like "Morning is Come."   That's when I first learned the art of not getting volunteered by dint of avoiding eye contact. This was all around 1960-ish or before. Thanks for making me dredge my memory banks so pleasurably!


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Penny S.
Date: 15 Aug 07 - 06:10 PM

The timetabling of radio and TV programs was a complex and secret art, especially in Kent. At half term, the BBC would broadcast repeats in successive weeks, so that whenever a school had its half term, they would not miss an episode. Except that Kent, possibly because of hopping or some such local variation, always had its half term in one of the non repeating weeks. What joy when tape recording became possible! Except for the poor teacher who had to ensure all the recording happened. I wonder what happened to our plug in timer.

Kent still runs out of synch with everyone else. Especially with the six term year scheme.

Penny


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Dave Roberts
Date: 15 Aug 07 - 02:30 PM

Guest Edthefolkie,

The schools programmes were on the BBC Home Service (renamed Radio 4 in 1967.


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: GUEST,Jan
Date: 15 Aug 07 - 01:33 PM

Thanks for help with Weggis song. I now know it is known as Das Rigilied ( Rigi being the mountain above Weggis) and the 1st line in German is: Von Luzern auf Weggis zu....then ho-la-hi,etc. I am not sure how this translated-could be :From Lucerne to Weggis go...


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: LindsayInWales
Date: 15 Aug 07 - 09:20 AM

thanks Joe I'm in!! (I was in before but have changed my ID now) - as to Weggis I have it in a music book if wanted. I also have it as a music-box tune in a little revolving sweet-dish brought back from Switzerland by my late Aunt in the 1950s!

Lindsay


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Anne Lister
Date: 15 Aug 07 - 09:08 AM

As to Weggis .. there was a song I remember which started "We are off to Weggis now" and then a nonsense line, supposedly yodelling. Would that be the one? I might have that in a Girl Guide songbook somewhere if so.

Anne


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: GUEST
Date: 15 Aug 07 - 06:25 AM

I have two "Singing Together" pamphlets which were my late father's (he was a primary school teacher) they are Autumn Term 1973 and Spring 1978, if they can add to the collection. How does one PM, I can't seem to manage it...

I was at the Abbey Primary School in St Albans from 1956-63 and remember Music and Movement, (having to be a daffodil to "Morning" from "Peer Gynt" and a clock to Rossini's "Thieving Magpie") Time and Tune, and Singing Together, as others do....I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was better than having to do "sums"....
    You have to be a registered member to be able to send PMs - personal messages. Membership is free - you can sign up here (click), or through the "Membership" link at the top of most Mudcat pages.
    -Joe Offer, Forum Moderator-
    joe@mudcat.org


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: GUEST,edthefolkie
Date: 15 Aug 07 - 05:05 AM

This thread, combined with scanning in my 1957 & 1958 class 11 photos recently, has reduced me to a blubbering wreck.

You lot were LUCKY to 'ave a radio which could be carried around. Our school were so poor we only 'ad gret big wooden loudspeakers in each classroom and a wooden radio in't 'Ead's office. And when I started in t'infants in 1952 they still used SLATES. And you try telling the kids that terday, they'll laugh in yer face.

Seriously, the speakers didn't really matter as the Schools broadcasts were only on one station (anybody remember which? I can't)and there were no tape recorders available. So there must have been some sort of cunning plan as to who listened where, to what and when.

I just associate the whole Singing Together/Rhythm and Melody thing with sitting in the school hall instead of working.

Oh God, then there was Maypole dancing.........


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Llanfair
Date: 15 Aug 07 - 04:30 AM

Oh, I am enjoying this thread!!! "Singing together" was always my favourite lesson. We'd go into the hall and sit cross legged on the floor, and Miss Prime would turn the radio on. I loved the songs, but it was 10 years later I discovered they were folk songs.
"The Keeper" sticks in my memory. Cleaned up for us children, though!!

I was at junior school from '53 to '59.


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Splott Man
Date: 15 Aug 07 - 04:17 AM

I've still got some of the books filed away in my posterity/oblivion cupboard. I'll look them up.


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Betsy
Date: 14 Aug 07 - 06:20 PM

Hi Alun,
Marianina " come oh come and turn us into foam ....." won the vote around 1955 /6 I would have been about 8 or 9 years old.
Perhaps they relaunched or repeated the whole thing for a different "wave " of kids. Perhaps it was the first time the BBC fixed the voting Eh ?


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Penny S.
Date: 14 Aug 07 - 03:54 PM

I think the Martians were in Time and Tune, which was for younger children, and was often of made up songs. Sometimes to existing tunes, as in "I see a little man standing in the wood" A dratted earworm.

Penny


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 14 Aug 07 - 03:29 PM

Guest, Jan - I think we need a bit more of a clue as to what the song was about. "Late 50s" isn't really sufficient.

Kitty


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: GUEST,Jan
Date: 14 Aug 07 - 03:12 PM

Have just returned from a holiday in Switzerland and caught the boat from Weggis to Lucerne. The ancient cogs of my memory have been trying to remember the words of a song we sang in Singing together in the late 50s. Can anyone help,please?


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: GUEST,Alun
Date: 08 Feb 07 - 02:00 PM

Excellent stuff on here - keep it going folks

I was at a tiny primary school in S Wales in the late 60s/early 70s and the school took in 'Singing Together' broadcasts as part of the curriculum.

No-one so far seems to have mentioned that at the end of the term, the show would encourage schools to let the kids vote for their favourite song, and then send in the votes cast for each song in the pamphlet. Our school always participated in this. As I recall we were allowed to vote for 3 songs.

The last 'Singing Together' of each term then involved a 'Pick of the Pops' or 'Eurovision Song Contest' style show with a rundown of the songs. The songs with the lowest votes were broadcast first, and with the tension mounting we then got to the winning song.

I've tried to work out which were the winning songs from the various terms, and I've come up with the list below. Someone with a better memory than me will hopefully correct me on any errors.

Spring 68 - Men Of Harlech (from personal experience I can advise listeners a lot of vote-rigging went on in Welsh schools. My lips are sealed though on the identity of the man responsible).

Summer 68 - the awesome 'Marianina'

Autumn 68 - Football Crazy

Spring 69 - Oh Marlborough's Gone To War Sir

Autumn 69 - Charlie Is My Darling ???

Spring 70 - Mango Walk or Old Zip Coon

Summer 70 - Linstead Market (overwhelming winner in our school, despite my attempts to get The Yellow Sheepskin as the winner)

Autumn 70 - The Twelve Days of Christmas or This Old Man

Summer 71 - The Meadowlands (a total shock winner as I recall)   

Hopefully someone has a better memory than me.


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 21 Jan 07 - 05:07 AM

Limpit's class still sing a song called 'Mango Walk'.

The smell of plasticine reminds me of my fifth birthday, which was also my first day at school. I was dragged along by my mother who callously abandoned me at the front door, hauled into a classroom from which I could see my house and given a seat at the front next to the Romany girl no-one else would sit near. I was then coerced into coming to the teacher's desk, where she had 5 candles on a piece of hardboard that had plasticine blobs on it. Someone sang Happy Birthday and the teacher pulled my hair 5 times. All this before first playtime!

Is it any wonder I hated school from then on.

LTS


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: GUEST,Jim Martin
Date: 20 Jan 07 - 09:25 PM

It's great to hear these reminiscences, I can smell the chalk dust and plasticene now!

It took 30 odd years to re-awaken my interest in folk music and when it did, I was blown away by the extent, variety and availability of it.


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Dave Roberts
Date: 20 Jan 07 - 07:04 PM

It's strange how the memory plays tricks. I listened to the 'PM'item on 'Singing Together' and was amazed to hear William Appleby's strong Yorkshire accent.
It all makes sense of course, as I believe Mr Appleby was a Yorkshire schoolteacher.
But I could have sworn that he had a hearty upper-class BBC type accent. Obviously not.
As I say, the memory plays tricks and I could be confusing Mr A with any number of 'received pronunciation' types which the BBC used to broadcast into our little country classroom all those years ago.


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: An Buachaill Caol Dubh
Date: 20 Jan 07 - 11:17 AM

Didn't Willaim Cole have something to do with "Singing Together"?


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: bubblyrat
Date: 19 Jan 07 - 06:47 PM

The arrival of the big wooden radio, considered modern at the time compared the those great big bakelite ones, must have heralded the arrival of electricity in my old primary school. I had to think about this when recalling the joys of Singing Together and Rythm and Melody (which I think included more classical music). Up until that point we had gas lamps, which the caretaker used to come round and turn on with a hook on the end of a long pole, and coke stoves which he came round and tipped fresh coke onto during the dark days of winter. This was in the fifties too! Yes - we did learn to write with black slates and chalk - wasn't it fun!!
Whoops - forgot to log him off and log me on - Anniecat x


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: DMcG
Date: 19 Jan 07 - 05:04 PM

In answer to original post, by the way, they said on the radio today that it started in 1948, so there's a good chance the Autumn 1948 booklet of IanC's was the earliest issued.


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: DMcG
Date: 19 Jan 07 - 05:02 PM

I've finished transcribed a lot of the "Singing Together" booklets over at Folkinfo ,which I mentioned I was busy with earlier in this thread.

I'd be happy to recieve scans or similar of any other booklets people have. PM me for the email address to send them to.


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: danensis
Date: 19 Jan 07 - 04:17 PM

Well you've inspired me to dig out my stack of "Singing Together" booklets I inherited from my wife. Apart from Summer 1951, which is an oddity we found in a charity shop, I seem to have most of them from Autumn 1960 to Summer 1967 including a couple of duplicates.

There were three booklets a year for the spring, summer and autumn terms, and in autumn 1963 coloured covers appeared. The 1951 one has Rhythm & Melody on the cover, but it is not mentioned in the 1960s pamphlets.

John


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 19 Jan 07 - 02:20 PM

For Today read PM.


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Leadfingers
Date: 19 Jan 07 - 01:22 PM

On the Today programme (BBC Radio 4 5pm) they played a recording of Singing together using the Chorus of Brennan om the Moor !


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: GUEST,ruth fletcher
Date: 19 Jan 07 - 01:16 PM

I loved Singing Together. Attending, very unhappily, a prep school in the late fifties, the release of singing was wonderful. For some reason 'Westering Home' sticks in my mind.I also seem to remember someone called Gladys Whitred (or something similar) being associated with the programme.


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Mo the caller
Date: 12 Apr 06 - 06:35 AM

I have summer 61 (must havee been my little sister's last term at Junior school.
Also some Time and Tune from my cousin Spring 53,Summer 58, and a pink one with Yankee Doodle on p3.


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Mo the caller
Date: 12 Apr 06 - 06:22 AM

I remember the big wooden radio being brought round to our class. And sometimes we were allowed to listen to the next programme too.
Some of the pamphlets had things to fill in but we couldn't as they were saving them for next year, this may have been the Nature Study programmes.


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 12 Apr 06 - 03:49 AM

In our school Park Junior in Boston, Lincs. Two classes came together. The programme was repeated in the week. cos we had the nature programme, and we sometimes caught the fag end of the repeat, and started singing spontaneously to it.

two classes came together. us and the B class.
for notes and a song(Grammar School Puppy Dog) about the class system in schools in those days see my website

http://bigalwhittle.co.uk/id4.html

The big old wooden radio was kept on a special high shelf (out of our reach) in the corner of the room. The teacher's pet was entrusted with the great honour of turning the radio on an d off every week, when the order came.

the pamphlets were given out at athe start of every singing lesson. the lessons weren't popular as we we squashed three in a desk that was designed for two..... someone always got introuble for pushing someone else so they landed on the floor. I remember also the smug smiles of satisfaction from some girls at being squashed in a desk next to lad that was generally fancied by the other girls. There were enough pamphlets for two between three - although when one or two kids were standing in the corner, for larking about and squabbling - you sometimes got your own book.

The worse was when you got stuck sitting next to slow reader, who tried following the words with his finger. Non readers were better than this as they tended not to give a shit, and let you have the book - however proximity to them frequently carried the risk of infestation. Also as the lesson came straight after playtime, you could be stuck next to some idiot who had been running round in the rain playing football, and he would be dripping all over you for half an hour. A footballl playing slow reader dripping all over the book, just about put the tin hat on it.

quite often, these were the kids from poorer backgrounds who ended up taking these booklets home. The teacher would be looking for some little present he could give the poorer kids for Christmas and he would give them last years book.

I wonder if these memories are shared by anyone else?


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Dave Roberts
Date: 12 Apr 06 - 03:43 AM

As it happens I'm at Bob's today (Wed 12th) so I'll have a look.

DGR


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: DMcG
Date: 12 Apr 06 - 02:55 AM

Typical. The first Summer 75 should be summer 74.


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: DMcG
Date: 12 Apr 06 - 02:54 AM

It may be you have some I don't, Dave. If so, I'd be glad of photocopies, scans or any other form of copy.

Here's my list:

Autumn: 60,65,66,68,69,70,71,72,73,74,77,78,84,85
Spring: 67,68,69,70,72,73,74,75,76,77,78,81,82,85,86
Summer: 61,67,68,70,71,75,75,76,79


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Dave Roberts
Date: 12 Apr 06 - 01:16 AM

My friend and colleague Bob Webb has a pretty large collection of the Singing Together books ('pamphlets', we called them) and we were looking through them recently.
The memories, as they say, came flooding back when we came to songs like 'Riding On A Donkey', 'Dashing Away With A Smoothing Iron' and, especially, an extraordinary song called 'Old Zip Coon'.
'Old Zip Coon he played all day, until the neighbours ran away; he played all night by the light of the moon, but he wouldn't play anything but Old Zip Coon'. What was that all about?
Actually my primary education, in a little country school in Cheshire, had quite an element of folk tradition to it and perhaps it is no coincidence that I later went on to become one of the founders of Middlewich Folk & Boat Festival. As well as 'Singing Together' (and the dreaded 'Music & Movement')on the BBC Home Service we also had 'country dancing' to the accompaniment of ancient Jimmy Shand Records.Not only that, we also had our own Maypole, and I was a member of a small elite able to do 'plaiting' as well as ordinary dancing.
And, in an uncanny foreshadowing of 'Don't Sit On My Jimmy Shands', our Headmistress, Miss Mason, did exactly that and broke several of them.
Thanks for the memories, folks.


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: BusyBee Paul
Date: 11 Apr 06 - 04:05 AM

I'm sure we did a song "Calling all Martians to take a stand".

As was said earlier, I can't remember what I had for lunch yesterday but think I can remember at least a couple of verses of this!.

And then there were the calypsos and what I still think of as traditional English folksongs - Johnny Todd, One misty moisty morning etc. I always enjoyed these sessions, but then I alsways enjoyed singing. Music and Movement was fine, compared to English Country Dancing - where the dancing was fine but the teacher was a racist wotsit. It's funny, having spoken to half a dozen old school pals from my primary school, the one thing we all remember is her rascist comments and actions in the class.


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Purple Foxx
Date: 11 Apr 06 - 02:40 AM

What weelittledrummer said.
Whilst Singing Together was not the only source of Folk Music I came across in my formative years it was an important one.
I know more than one person who,whilst not a folkie,still retain affection for the songs they learnt that way.


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 11 Apr 06 - 01:33 AM

It was a well meaning attempt to widen our horizons, and maybe in some cases it did.

Certainly when you discovered Martin Carthy five years later, you had already come across some of his songs like High Germany in Singing Together. Mr Appleby must have been pretty well up on the folk scene for his time - acquainted as he seemed to be with Scots, Irish, English, Welsh, Jamaican and American folksongs.

The plummy accents singing the songs seemed to us very unhip, we were listening to Cliff Richard and Tommy Steele round that time in the 1950's. Still as Peggy Seeger said recently in a thread - in that period, people earnestly consulted her and Ewan as to how to make a start presenting traditional material - people just felt all at sea.

Its a big pity folksongs aren't presented to kids nowadays. One would have thought, now that we have so many different ethnic strands within our community, it could be a big unifying force. Mind you the folksingers entrusted with the job would need a passsion to communicate with children, rather than looking inwardly to some tradition that not too many people have had handed down to them.

Come to think of it - it wouldn't be all that bad an idea outside the classroom also.


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: GUEST,Jane F
Date: 10 Apr 06 - 11:05 PM

I used to LOVE doing Singing Together in the 1970s. Hope to find some of the old songs on Folkinfo and bring back some memories!


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Subject: RE: History - BBC's 'Singing Together'
From: DMcG
Date: 10 Apr 06 - 04:25 PM

Just to let you know I am still inching my way along putting the booklets online over at Folkinfo. When I started I thought it might take a couple of years to load them up because of other commitments. That still looks likely; so far I've put 34 up (unless I've miscounted). But I've not seen Aunt Hessie and her horse yet that I remember.


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