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Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook

09 Sep 00 - 04:49 PM (#294243)
Subject: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect group songbook
From: Joe Offer

OK, so there's another thread going (click here), bashing Rise Up Singing again. As usual, everybody seems to put the blame on me for all the shortcomings of the book, just because I speak up for its good points.
We all know that the Digital Tradition is the best songbook ever created, but it's a little impractical to use during a song circle. Can you imagine 25 people singing from laptops? So, OK, since Rise Up Singing is so awful, what songs would you suggest for the perfect GROUP songbook? Post your lists here - and preferably break them into categories.

One Reminder: if you mention a song that's not in the Digital Tradition or the Forum, please post the lyrics. That's Official Mudcat Policy, Promulgation #001, issued by Dick Greenhaus himself on many occasions.
And I'm late for the San Francisco Mudcat gathering, so I'm gonna hit the road. I want a good list ready for me by the time I get back.
-Joe Offer-


09 Sep 00 - 06:42 PM (#294264)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: Mbo

Bonehead's Bank Holiday!


09 Sep 00 - 10:31 PM (#294350)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: rabbitrunning

Okay, that's tricky.

I like thisversion of AIKEN DRUM for one.


10 Sep 00 - 10:23 PM (#294817)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: Tinker

I've got to research the DT a bit better before I start, but this needs to be refreshed. Come on guys I know this group has opinions on songs worth singing.

Tinker


10 Sep 00 - 11:08 PM (#294830)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: Midchuck

I've done the Austin Lounge Lizards' Old Blevins a few times on HearMe, and had people request it yet again. I have performed it at gigs to the point of driving my partners crazy, and it is usually well received, primarily because it has the easiest chorus to learn of any song ever written, for adults at least. I've typed it in and tried to format it so it will read properly in HTML, but I have no idea how it'll come out.

Here's what I've got:

OLD BLEVINS (by the Austin Lounge Lizards, or some of them):

We had a little quarrel, she and I.
She told me to go curl up and die.
I went out to drown my sorrows,
At a joint called "No Tomorrows,"
Where the old man came and looked me in the eye:
Old Blevins.

I could see he had some wisdom to impart,
Some picture that was stamped and burned and etched upon his heart,
Then his eyes began to glisten
'Cause he knew that I would listen,
We sat there at that bar 'till nearly three,
And this is what Old Blevins said to me:

He said, "Blah, blah blah blah, blah blah, blah, in Tiajuana;
"Blah blah blah, back in 1963!"
He said, "Blah, blah blah blah, blah blah blah blah, you should have been there!"
"Blah blah blah" was what Old Blevins said to me.

So I sat there and I listened to his words,
As the flapped around my head like little birds.
Had he gone plumb round the bend,
Or did I just not comprehend?
His lips were writing songs I could not read,
When suddenly, it all came clear to me.
As he said, "Blah, blah blah blah, blah blah, blah, them crazy hippies!
"Blah blah blah, blah blah no effect on me!"
He said, "Blah, blah blah blah, blah blah blah blah, the Great Depression!"
"Blah blah blah" and he would not leave me be.

Old Blevins was still talking when I siezed my chance to flee.
Back home she's never learned I'm not the fool I used to be.
But I know that a man and a woman's lives were somehow changed
By a loathsome, toothless geezer, incoherent and deranged.
And my memories of that evening fuel an inner, mounting fear
That I might become Old Blevins, anywhere that they sell beer!

And I'll say "Blah, blah blah blah, blah blah, blah, I don't remember...
"Blah blah blah, blah blah blah, mistakes were made..."
I'll say, "Blah, blah blah blah, blah blah blah blah, how about them Cowboys?"
"Blah blah blah" just like Old Blevins said to me.

Old Blevins....


10 Sep 00 - 11:12 PM (#294831)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: Sorcha

(can we put the melody line in for us poor souls who don't use chords? Pretty Please?) I like St. Brendan's Fair Isle and Whiskey in the Tay (Tea) but I don't have the words or melody to either of them. We need a couple of good tearjerkers like Hard Times and Lorena, too.


10 Sep 00 - 11:23 PM (#294837)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: Mbo

Don't forget Mudcat's unofficial anthem:

Five Dollar Five
Written by Alex Harvey, performed by Chris Ledoux

We're a fun lovin' crowd, kinda rowdy and loud,
Our jukebox won't play no sad songs,
So don't come in here and cry in your beer,
Cause we don't care about who done who wrong.

CHORUS
We got a five dollar fine for whinin',
We'll tell you before you come in.
And if it ain't on your mind to have a good ]time,
Ya'll come back and see us again.

Well, we don't really care about your clothes or your hair,
This party's open to all.
Yah we like a good joke and it's alright to smoke,
We got just one rule on the wall.

CHORUS

Now there's too many fools makin' too many rules,
That's one thing you can't say about us.
Cause we all get along when we sing the same song
There's just one thing that causes a fuss.

CHORUS
CHORUS


11 Sep 00 - 12:15 AM (#294860)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: John in Brisbane

Every session needs a farewell song. Here's one of my favourites.:

All the tunes in the world
Ewan McVicar
Tune - The South Wind(ish)
Lay down the borrowed guitar
Lay down the fiddle and bow
You'd like one more drink from the bar
But the manager says you must go

CHORUS:
And all the tunes in the world
Are dancing around in your head
But the clock on the gantry says playtime is o'er
You'll just have to sing them instead

Lay down the jig and the reel
Lay down the planxty and slide
Everyone knows how you feel
But there's no time to take one more ride

The barmaid has put on her coat
And the barman has emptied the slops
The manager's pals are afraid
The music will bring in the cops

Everyone here feels the same
Oh yes, you deserve one more tune
But you know the rules of the game
It's time to go howl at the moon

Regards, John


11 Sep 00 - 11:35 AM (#295030)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: GUEST,rabbitrunning

Hmmm. Still thinking about selections, but I've decided that the perfect Mudcat songbook would include more than one version if known, and leave space for "write the verses you know that we didn't include here..."


11 Sep 00 - 12:15 PM (#295050)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: wysiwyg

FIVE DOLLAR FINE.

FINE.

FINE.

~S~


11 Sep 00 - 01:03 PM (#295079)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: dick greenhaus

I don't recommend singing from books. Or notes. Or computers. I would point out, though, that my newly-acquired (now out-of-production) Toshiba Libretto is physically a good bit smaller than RUS, weighs about seven ounces more and currently carries about sevet times as many songs.

To make an almost-perfect songbook (for you, anyway---I might hate it) why not fire up the old printer and make your own. DigiTrad is a good source to start with; there are, of course, others.


11 Sep 00 - 03:01 PM (#295148)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: The Shambles

From the Mudcat Songbook Rise Up Screaming by Barry Finn


11 Sep 00 - 03:25 PM (#295168)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: GUEST,Russ

Actually I CAN easily imagine 25 people singing from laptops. I have a laptop I use as my electronic songbook and so do a number of my friends. We've never had 25 laptops going at once. Our personal best is about 6. Properly spaced, you could probably serve 25 people with 6 or 7 laptops. So what's wrong with 25 people singing from laptops?


11 Sep 00 - 04:21 PM (#295200)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: Joe Offer

Hmmm. Well, this thread hasn't quite generated the response I was looking for. I was looking for suggestions for songs that work well in group situations, songs that nonsingers can easily join in singing. So far, I think I see two songs listed here that might work well for group singing. Unless somebody can give me a reasonable alternative that actually works with nonsingers, I think I'll stick with Rise Up Singing.
Yes, I've led singing all my life without using a songbook. In situations like that, I use very simple songs that people can learn instantly, very familiar songs that a good number of people know, or songs with a chorus that is easy to learn. That all works quite well when I'm in charge, but what we're trying to have is a more democratic situation, where everybody has a chance to contribute.
One song that's just about perfect for this sort of situation is "Long Long Ago." People can join in singing the repeated "long, long ago" immediately, and they can learn the rest of the song fairly quickly, without relying on a book.
This is what I'm looking for - to get people singing right away and to encourage them to take the lead early on, and then to gradually wean them from books and song sheets. You haven't given me satisfactory answers yet.
-Joe Offer


11 Sep 00 - 06:10 PM (#295254)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: Peter T.

Pasted into my RUS (over the Mens Section, the Women's section, and at random over other dreary bits) are some of the following well known songs --

"Pennies from Heaven"
"He'll Have To Go"
"Tennessee Waltz"
I Can't Give You Anything But Love, Baby"
"Carrickfergus"
"Bonny Portmore"
"If I Were A Carpenter"
"Reason To Believe"
"Jeanie With the Light Brown Hair"
"Beautiful Dreamer"
"Daniel"
"Your Song"
"Mr Tambourine Man"
"Just Like A Woman".
and lots of others.

yours, Peter T.


11 Sep 00 - 06:37 PM (#295265)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: Joe Offer

Now, that's more like it. Give us more, Peter!
-Joe Offer-


11 Sep 00 - 07:34 PM (#295299)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: Mbo

We Beesech Thee
Someday
In Time
Sweet Cherokee
Young Country
The Blues Man
When The People Speak
Buffalo Jump
Don't Walk Away (I've had dreams about this one)


11 Sep 00 - 08:20 PM (#295321)
Subject: ADD: The Goldfish
From: dick greenhaus

Joe,
The classic get-'em-to-sing-when-they-don't know-the-words song is The Goldfish: (to the popular version of Auld Lang Syne)


THE GOLDFISH

The goldfish, in his little bowl
Swims round and round and round,
And round and round and round and round
And round and round and round.
    And round and round and round and round
    And round and round and round
    And round and round and round and round
    And round and round and round.

And when his mating time comes due
He does not leap nor bound,
He just swims...etc

And when the crack of doom is heard
You know where he'll be found,
Just swimming round etc.


Or you could use just about any sea chanty, or any union song or most simple gospels.


11 Sep 00 - 09:36 PM (#295362)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: Ely

God forgive me for this, in light of the great contributions of Pete Seeger, et. al. to folk music, but it would NOT contain that mind-bogglingly simplistic song abut "last night I had the strangest dream".

"Don't Think Twice", "Leaving on a Jet Plane", "Cocaine Blues", "Dehlia", "Darcy Farrow", the original version of "Ginny's Gone to Ohio", "1913 Massacre", "Forth Worth Blues", "Lost Highway", "Orphan Annie", "Billy Gray".

I can think of lots of songs I'd include--_Rise Up Singing_ is nice but it's missing a lot of classics and it needs a bigger variety.


11 Sep 00 - 09:39 PM (#295364)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: Mbo

The King of Dixie!


11 Sep 00 - 09:59 PM (#295380)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: campfire

Hi, Joe

When we're doing a 'fire with a bunch of non-singers present, we usually start with stuff "everybody" at least remembers little bits of, like

Clementine
Down in the Valley
Home On the Range
Long Long Trail
When Johnny Comes Marching Home
You Are My Sunshine
My Bonnie

If they "work", we'll do some other "camp" type songs, like

Pink Pajamas
The Deacon Went Down
You're in the Army Now

that are easy to learn and to make up verses for once you get the hang of it.

If they don't work, we pretty much let the non-singers listen, and the "singers" present do whatever comes to mind. Usually, no matter what, there's a few people who won't join in.

If I understand correctly, you're looking for songs for repeated sessions, and "non-singers" who attend frequently may learn more new (to them) songs. We are doing a "one time" thing for many of the campers. We have a new group every week. Some campers stay two weeks, and many were there the previous year(s), but we never know what's going to happen. We tried printing up songsheets, but its DARK out there, and they didn't help much.

We ALWAYS end with Amazing Grace.

campfire


11 Sep 00 - 10:21 PM (#295390)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: campfire

Ooops, you asked for lyrics if they weren't in the DT. If this is, I haven't ever found it..

PINK PAJAMAS
(tune is John Brown's Body)

I wear my pink pajamas in the summer when its hot
I wear my flannel night shirt in the winter when its not
And sometimes in the springtime and sometimes in the fall
I jump right in between the sheets with nothing on at all
Glory, gloty what's it to you
Glory, glory what's it to you
Glory, glory, what's it to you
If I jump right in between the sheets with nothing on at all

One mosquito bit the other mosquito on the back
(repeat twice)
They were only playing cannibal
Glory, glory, (etc.)

One flea fly flew up the flue, the other flea fly flew down
repeat twice
they were only playing flea-flue-fly
Glory, glory....

One pink porpoise popped up the pole, the other pink porpoise popped down
(repeat twice)
Glory, glory how peculiar, etc

campfire


12 Sep 00 - 12:41 AM (#295461)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: Mbo

DEFINATELY "The Town I Loved So Well."


12 Sep 00 - 01:49 AM (#295496)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: Ebbie

Sorcha, St. Brendan's is in the DT under Saint Brendan's Voyage. One of my favorite group songs! The first time I heard it was the first time I heard Mick Moloney- I was utterly charmed.

Ebbie


12 Sep 00 - 09:59 AM (#295610)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: Peter T.

Umm, let's see -- "Unchained Melody"
"As Tears Go By"
"As Time Goes By"
"Lady Came From Baltimore"
"Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall"
"American Tune", "Kathy's Song", "At The Zoo" (Paul Simon)
"This Boy", "I'll Follow the Sun", "Fixing a Hole" (and all kinds of other Beatle songs -- RUS only has We Can Work It Out, Yesterday, and Yellow Sub I think).
"Bury Me Not on the Lone Prairie"
"El Paso"
"Ghost Riders in the Sky"
"Just out of Reach"
"Blue Bayou"
"Boulder to Birmingham"
"Prayer in Open D"
"Tower of Song"
"Bird on the Wire"
"Great Big Gobs of..."
"Eddie Tushacatchacamatoesandearsandtoesanokasammakammawatchee Borwn"
THE OTHER UNICORN SONG!

yours, Peter T.


12 Sep 00 - 10:42 AM (#295638)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: Mbo

Peter, RUS also has Blackbird, With A Little Help From My Friends, Taxman, Nowhere Man, Here Comes The Sun, and In My Life as well.


12 Sep 00 - 12:32 PM (#295723)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: Peter T.

By golly, MBo, you are right. If I hadn't pasted Beatle songs over all the index pages, I wouldn't have made a fool ("Day after day...") of myself, irony of ironies.

yours, Peter T.


27 Dec 08 - 01:06 PM (#2525620)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: katlaughing

Great lists, PeterT!


27 Dec 08 - 09:17 PM (#2525845)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: Stringsinger

Make the print large. So you can see it when you put the book on the floor.

Print songs that have lots of choruses. There are some solo songs that sound bad
when everyone sings them (mostly off-key).

Someone should do a folk song book with basic vocal harmonies. Maybe just two or three parts, not a glee-club approach. Some could have just descants or counter-lines.

Put the songs in a contextual or categorical order with a few basic lines of accompanying information on the songs, meanings, etc.

I think there are songs that rely on accompaniment patterns and don't hold up as tunes
without them. There are certainly songs that rely on "production value" and sound sparse without it.

Frank


28 Dec 08 - 01:13 AM (#2525883)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: Gurney

You don't ask much, do you, Joe!

I should think that you would need several books, American/Canadian, Irish/Irish American, Scottish/English, Australian/New Zealand...

The Beatles songs would make up a book on their own! Try singing them at a festival and see what I mean. Everyone joins in!


28 Dec 08 - 08:27 PM (#2526289)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: Ref

To be a perfect Mudcat songbook, it would need to be printed on flash paper in disappearing ink in order to satisfy the "No Songbooks" crowd who can't get it through their very thick heads that their "performance" standards don't apply to group sings.

Sorry, Joe. I'm still riled from the other thread. I really like "Early" by Greg Brown, Mary Chapin Carpenter's "Dreamland", Pat Humphries' "Cold Cup Of Water" and "Swimming To The Other Side", David Dobson's "Farthest Field", and Cindy Kallet's "Tide And The River Rising." Some already mentioned as well!


28 Dec 08 - 10:59 PM (#2526347)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: WFDU - Ron Olesko

Large print editions are available


28 Dec 08 - 11:15 PM (#2526353)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: GUEST

Ron, I was looking at that in our local Folk Shop the other day, and it's "larger" print, which is sadly not really "large" print. It is larger, though.

~ Becky in Tucson


28 Dec 08 - 11:41 PM (#2526359)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Up Singing - a perfect songbook
From: WFDU - Ron Olesko

True - it is 120% of the original size