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Lyr Req: Banks of the Clyde

DigiTrad:
BANKS OF THE CLYDE


Related thread:
not sure of title to this old song!-Banks of Clyde (8)


GUEST,Dave 17 Jul 05 - 10:00 PM
Malcolm Douglas 17 Jul 05 - 10:55 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 17 Jul 05 - 11:25 PM
Malcolm Douglas 17 Jul 05 - 11:46 PM
Snuffy 18 Jul 05 - 09:40 AM
GUEST,Dave 18 Jul 05 - 07:04 PM
Malcolm Douglas 18 Jul 05 - 07:42 PM
GUEST,Dave 19 Jul 05 - 06:27 PM
Malcolm Douglas 19 Jul 05 - 11:22 PM
GUEST,Dave 20 Jul 05 - 08:11 PM
MartinRyan 23 Jul 05 - 07:14 AM
Skipper Jack 24 Jul 05 - 04:12 AM
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Subject: Lyr Req: Banks of the Clyde
From: GUEST,Dave
Date: 17 Jul 05 - 10:00 PM

I wonder if anyone knows the words? Here's as much as I can remember:-

As I went out awalking one pleasant summer's evening
Down by the banks of a clear, flowing stream
In ambush I lay for to hear two lovers talking
And sweetly the streams they did gently play
A young sailor standing by, he appeared as a stranger
And he said dearest fair one I have come from afar
So don't be confused or consider it a danger
For to walk by the side of a jolly young tar.

Well indeed then kind sir the truth I will tell you
For the clothes that you wear they are dear to my heart
They are like my young william.....

Many thanks in advance


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Banks of the Clyde
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 17 Jul 05 - 10:55 PM

There are several very different songs called Banks of the Clyde. This one is a version of William and Jane on the Banks of the Clyde, which appeared on broadsides in the later 19th century.

Several copies from Brereton of Dublin (late 1860s), poorly printed and with his usual idiosyncratic typesetting, can be seen at  Bodleian Library Broadside Ballads:

A new song call'd William and Jane on the banks of Clyde

A much better edition from the Glasgow "Poet's Box" (1856) can be seen at  Murray Collection of broadside ballads:

William and Jane

Not a very well-remembered song, it appears; there is an Ulster set (subtitled One Fine Summer's Morning) in Sam Henry's Songs of the People, and Seamus Ennis recorded a version in Kirkcudbright, Scotland, in 1953. Doubtless there are other examples. Where did you hear this?


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Subject: ADD: Glasgow Fair On the Banks of the Clyde
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 17 Jul 05 - 11:25 PM

The broadside, "Glasgow Fair; On the Banks of the Clyde," in which the fellow makes love to her, promises to meet her again, then forgets and crosses the Clyde.
http://www.nls.uk/broadsides/scans/74412273.jpg; Poet's Box, 1869
(Lyrics added by Joe Offer, from the broadside at the above link)

GLASGOW FAIR ON THE BANKS OF THE CLYDE

When I was young and youth did bloom,
Where fancy led me, I did roam;
From town to town the country round,
Through every sylvan shady grove.
Until I came from Scotland by name,
Where beauty shines on every side,
There’s no town there we can compare
With Glasgow fair, on the banks of Clyde.

As I went out in the evening clear,
By the banks of Clyde I chanced to gang,
There I met a weel far'd lass,
Her beauty put me in a trance.
Her cherry cheeks and ruby lips,
Her hair in ringlets down did glide,
And fain would I have kissed her lips
As she walked on the banks of Clyde.

I spier’d at her, and said, fair maid
How far this road do you mean to gang?
A mile or two, kind sir. she said,
Towards a town called Long Govan.
Will you take company my pretty maid,
With one who's willing to make a bride?
So arm in arm without fear of harm,
They walked along the banks of Clyde.

I'm afraid you are from Ireland,
And from Belfast just come o'er;
A sea-port town of great renown,
Towards the north or eastern shore;
That you have left a beauty bright,
Who is well known to be your bride,
Therefore, says she, "'tis dangerous for me
To walk with you on the banks of Clyde."

I said no more but I went with her,
The waters they were running clear,
The small birds gone into their nests,
The moon in glances did appear;
I put my arm around her waist,
Her fears now began to subside,
And ofttimes I kissed her ruby lips
As she lay upon the banks of Clyde.

But what we did, or what we said,
There’s no one breathing here shall know;
Oft times I kissed her ruby lips,
While her colours swift did come and go.
Sir, since you’ve got your will, she says,
I pray make me your lawful bride;
I promised to meet her there again,
But I forgot, and crossed the Clyde.


Tune - original.

From the Poet's Box, 80 London Street, Glasgow


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Banks of the Clyde
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 17 Jul 05 - 11:46 PM

That's one of the other songs I mentioned in passing that often go by the same name; not really related except formulaically.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Banks of the Clyde
From: Snuffy
Date: 18 Jul 05 - 09:40 AM

And there's another totally different Banks of the Clyde (also known as The Scotch Brigade) set in the Sudan campaign of 1895/6. I have a version on tape collected in Suffolk in the 1980s, and mudcatter Joybell has recorded an Australian version of this updated to Gallipoli called Banks of the Murray


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Banks of the Clyde
From: GUEST,Dave
Date: 18 Jul 05 - 07:04 PM

Malcolm,

I think you hit squarely. Thank you for your help and undoubted expertise


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Banks of the Clyde
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 18 Jul 05 - 07:42 PM

So where did you come across it?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Banks of the Clyde
From: GUEST,Dave
Date: 19 Jul 05 - 06:27 PM

Malcolm,

I have it from a lady who now lives in County Roscommon, Ireland. Pauline Sweeney was her name when I first heard her sing it. She's married now to Patsy Hanley who is a great flute player from those parts. Pauline is from Donegal and has that way of singing. She sings extremely well and you'd stand in the rain to listen to her.
She hasn't as many verses as you gave me but that happens all the time.

I like the air that she sings it to and what's unusual for me is that I haven't a song or heard one with the same. It's a two-part air with each verse taking up one part. It's certainly an Ulster melody but in my limited experience you don't often hear two-part melodies from that part of Ireland. You're more likely to hear them in Munster. Laural Hill is another such song with a two-part air and it was written around the same time, I think. It's funny too because like this one, it's a sort of broken-token kind of song.

But I do value your time and effort and I thank you for them, what's more.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Banks of the Clyde
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 19 Jul 05 - 11:22 PM

Thanks for the information. There are certainly plenty of old songs still lurking around out there that aren't yet in printed or recorded collections, and it's important that we know about them so that they aren't lost. If you ever get the chance to record her singing, please do that. You'd be doing us all a favour.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Banks of the Clyde
From: GUEST,Dave
Date: 20 Jul 05 - 08:11 PM

Well--and I only make this offer because I might not see Pauline for several months if at all--I'd be happy to sing for you the song myself or any other you might think on. It's true my voice isn't great but well I'm getting a bit long in the tooth to be keeping them to myself anymore.

Anyway, I live here in the States, but I'm going to try to get to Goderich for the festival this year....maybe I'll see you there.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Banks of the Clyde
From: MartinRyan
Date: 23 Jul 05 - 07:14 AM

I have heard Pauline sing this one alright - and, I think, Christine Pierse, one of her pupils. But, as I read the words above, I kept hearing another, distinctive male voice in my mind's ear. Finally remembered: Gabriel McArdle, of County Fermanagh. He recorded it a few years ago on a Ben Lennon & Friends CD ("The Natural Bridge"?). He cites a local source - I'll dig it out and post details later.

Regards

p.s. Unfortunately, my laptop was nicked a few weeks ago. While I have backup of all my work-related stuff, I don't have copies of some customised versions of databases that I use for checking sources etc. So I'm afraid I'll be relying even more on the "mind's ear" from now on!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Banks of the Clyde
From: Skipper Jack
Date: 24 Jul 05 - 04:12 AM

Snuffy,
I sing the "Scotch Brigade" I learnt it first hand from George Belton, a farmer from Sussex. This was at the National Folk Festival in Keele quite a few years ago now. It's a great song. He also gave me a few more, one was a version of "Barbara Allen." (There was a thread on that song some time ago), and another called "The Streets of Rochester" (I think that was the title?).
I remember sitting in George's room armed with a tape recorder and sittng alongside me was none other than June Tabor. She asked me for a copy of The Streets of Rochester. I duly obliged and she sang it at a festival a few years later crediting George Belton and mentioning my name as well!!
Dave R.


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