To Thread - Forum Home

The Mudcat Café TM
19 messages

Origin: Oggie Man / Oggy Man (Cyril Tawney)

29 May 01 - 06:44 AM (#472162)
Subject: Oggie Man
From: Naemanson

There may already be a thread somewhere for this but the search function seems to be down. This could be a short term thread indeed.

I am looking for information on the Oggie Man. Where was he? Who was he? What is the story behind the song? I already have the words and music and a few tidbits but I am looking for some detail.

29 May 01 - 06:46 AM (#472163)
Subject: RE: Oggie Man
From: IanC

Oggie man. By Cyril Tawney. He sells Cornish Pasties. The plot is "nothing changes, except everything".


29 May 01 - 06:47 AM (#472164)
Subject: RE: Oggie Man
From: Jon Freeman

I've not got time to do any searching but this version of the search is OK


29 May 01 - 07:00 AM (#472167)
Subject: RE: Oggie Man
From: Malcolm Douglas

Cyril had this to say about his song, written in 1959:

"You need to be quite an old hand to recall the lone character who stood outside Albert Gate, Devonport, late each night selling "oggies" (Cornish pasties) to sailors returning from a run ashore (how on earth did he keep them warm?).  Everyone thought this minor institution would last as long as the Navy itself, but the Blitz gave the chance for rival hot dog stands to establish themselves on the bomb site opposite (many post-war sailors confuse these with the Oggie Man himself) and he was forced to abandon his pitch, if not his trade.  I imagined a sailor newly back from abroad.  He finds two unforeseen changes.  First, the girl hasn't waited.  Ruefully he remembers their last farewell, right here at the Albert Gate, when she likened the permanence of her love to that of the nearby Oggie Man.  Now he's aware of the second change, and bitterly he realises that there's more than one way of telling the truth."

-Sleevenotes, Sally Free and Easy (Neptune Tapes NEP 002, 1990).

29 May 01 - 07:31 AM (#472170)
Subject: RE: Oggie Man
From: Skipjack K8

Shoite, Malcolm, you know some stuff. Is that the same gate as referred to in The Dockyard Gate? I have an Oyster version of the song that I enjoy. What them girlies do get up to when us chaps is at sea?


29 May 01 - 07:33 AM (#472171)
Subject: RE: Oggie Man
From: Skipjack K8

ps. The Kirsty McColl song about the bloke down the chip shop thinking he's Elvis springs to mind!

29 May 01 - 07:48 AM (#472179)
Subject: RE: Oggie Man
From: Noreen

There doesn't seem to be a previous thread on this, though the song had been mentioned on several occasions on other threads.

For those who don't already have the words and tune, and can't find it, it's in the DT as the Oggy Man

(No, Skippy, I don't get the chip shop/Elvis connection with this song- but it's no doubt me being slow today...)


29 May 01 - 07:57 AM (#472183)
Subject: RE: Oggie Man
From: Skipjack K8

Well, the guy working daan the chip shop isn't really Elvis, and Kirsty has realised her lover is a liar too!

It's the retail food vendor/lover paradigm (he said trying to sound like he knows what the hell he is on about)!


29 May 01 - 08:12 AM (#472188)
Subject: RE: Oggie Man
From: Noreen

Ah- that rings bells now... unfortunately...

Thanks, Greg.


29 May 01 - 08:14 AM (#472189)
Subject: RE: Oggie Man
From: Bat Goddess

And pasties don't have to be kept warm. That's the whole point of "dinner well in hand" -- lunch could be taken down the mine, etc. and eaten at any time, at any temperature.

I was born in mining country in Michigan's Upper Peninsula -- pasties, recipe brought over by Cornish miners, have been enjoyed since my childhood. Curmudgeon and I even served them at our wedding.

Bat Goddess

29 May 01 - 09:05 AM (#472223)
Subject: RE: Oggie Man
From: Charley Noble

And I was always told that "pasties" were something that exotic dancers wore to comply with certain archaic codes – what a vision!

29 May 01 - 09:13 AM (#472226)
Subject: RE: Oggie Man
From: Lyndi-loo

The traditional shape of the Cornish pasty is so that miners could hold them by the raised bit of crust, with their dirty hands, and the crust was later thrown away.

29 May 01 - 10:04 AM (#472245)
Subject: RE: Oggie Man
From: Brian Hoskin

I live just around the corner from the Albert Gate at the Devonport Dockyard and I can tell you one thing that hasn't changed, the rain still softly falls there most of the time (although it is sunny today).

Of course, the Cornish would no doubt say that you were never able to get a proper pasty on the Devonport side of the Tamar.


29 May 01 - 11:09 AM (#472283)
Subject: RE: Oggie Man
From: GUEST,Jim Hancock

If it's of interest Cyril now has his own site at which includes info on his songs / recordings / and forthcoming gigs All the best Jim

22 Dec 01 - 11:38 AM (#614781)
Subject: RE: Oggie Man
From: 8_Pints

Further to Lindi-Loo's comment, I recall that Brenda Wootton had a workshop on oggie making at a festival many years ago. She told us that not only were the miners' hands dirty, but contaminated with arsenic from the mines. This reinforces the reasoning behind the practice of discarding the crusts: with the consequence that the rats became immune to the poison [but that's another story.....]

Bob vG

22 Dec 01 - 12:40 PM (#614814)
Subject: RE: Oggie Man
From: John MacKenzie

Brenda Wootton there's aname from the past. You'll be mentioning John The Fish next....Jock

22 Dec 01 - 03:35 PM (#614901)
Subject: RE: Oggie Man
From: dick greenhaus

..And, of course, Cyril has it on his one and only CD which is available from CAMSCO...

23 Dec 01 - 09:59 AM (#615284)
Subject: RE: Oggie Man
From: Mr Red

Isn't John the Fish still with us.
I remember his obit of Brenda Wooton someplace.
She used to have a stall in Penzance Market, dunno what she sold though.

23 Dec 01 - 04:27 PM (#615451)
Subject: RE: Oggie Man

Last time I saw Brenda was a few years back at a Ralph McTell gig in Penzance. She got up with Ralph to do a join in and see what happens with us. Ralph's guitar amp. packed up and he was making frantic hand signals to his techy - to no avail. As to pasties - best I have ever come across are to be had in Hayle.

I recall singing in the club in Devonport in the late 60's and him sing the Oggie Man. Malcolm's desc. is quite right - the arrival of larger atands gave rise to the eventual Ivor Dewdney pasty firm. Thsy say things don;t change for the better and ID pasties are living proof. Good to hear Cyril is still singing - we are all getting weathered a bit now but carry good memories.