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Origin: (I'm) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day

26 Jun 01 - 11:49 PM (#492720)
Subject: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: GUEST,davidg

On The Pogues record "Rum, Sodomy & the Lash" there's this song "A Man You Don't Meet Every Day." It's got a trad/arr credit but I've never been able to find it on any other record or in any book. Anybody know any other recordings or any history?


27 Jun 01 - 12:02 AM (#492728)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Barry Finn

You'll find it & a bit of info in the DT. Search under Jock Stewart. Good Luck, Barry


27 Jun 01 - 12:04 AM (#492729)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Stewie

The song is better known as 'Jock Stewart'. Put Jock Stewart (no quote marks) in the Digitrad and Forum Search box on the main forum page and you'll get heaps of stuff. It is in the DT also.

--Stewie.


27 Jun 01 - 12:06 AM (#492730)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Steve Latimer

I too heard the Pogues version and started a thread on it awhile back. Hopefully someone will blueclickything this for me.

www.mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=29430&messages=19

And welcome to Mudcat. A wonderful place.


27 Jun 01 - 12:19 AM (#492735)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Sandy Paton

Archie Fisher recorded it on his Folk-Legacy CD: The Man With a Rhyme (Folk-Legacy CD-61). For another text set to the same tune, check out "The Hard Working Miner" on the fine new CD by Mudcatter "Liam's Brother" (Dan Milner), also on Folk-Legacy: Irish in America (Folk-Legacy CD-129).

Sandy


27 Jun 01 - 12:24 AM (#492736)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: davidg

Aw, geez, I feel like a kid at Christmas. You've all been so very kind to me. I just went to the membership thingy and joined.


27 Jun 01 - 12:34 AM (#492745)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: mousethief

Welcome aboard, davidg!

If Jock Stewart is a man you don't meet every day, then he must not be a person in my neighborhood (as per Sesame Street).

Alex


27 Jun 01 - 12:45 AM (#492755)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: davidg

Just one more thing: What the heck is a "canny guan man?" Is it some horrible disease? Can I catch it?


27 Jun 01 - 12:54 AM (#492759)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: GUEST

Fisher's rendition knocks me out, as does the rest of that disc. Thanks, Sandy, for making such art available. (Twa Bonnie Maidens has been kicking around in my head for a couple of days; an antidote to recently-heard murder ballads on the two sisters theme.)


27 Jun 01 - 01:07 AM (#492764)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: davidg

I haven't heard the Archie Fisher version but, if he leaves out the part about shooting the dog...that's the crux of the whole song right there! I mean here's this powerful guy, he's got acres of land and men he commands, and still he's broken up because he had to shoot his dog. It kills me every time I hear it. (Iknownobody'sinterestedinmybandbut)By the way, regarding a woman singing this song...my wife sings it in our band (Pipsqueak) and it would tear your heart out.


27 Jun 01 - 01:39 AM (#492775)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Liz the Squeak

A canny guan man - a canny going man. Means he's canny - smart(arse); guan is just Geordie for going - meaning he's smart and easy going, something you don't get every day round here....

LTS - who once had a singing competition with Ian Bruce, with this very song, in the Middle Bar, Sidmouth. We were trying to see who could hold on to the bit 'when you're drinkiiiiiiiiiiiiiing with me' longest and loudest. I won. No mean feat if you've ever heard Ian sing. Oh, and I was doing it in harmony, almost an octave above him..... (head swells to point where it won't fit through door....)


27 Jun 01 - 04:21 AM (#492809)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Aidan Crossey

Actually, davidg, don't be so sure that no-one here's interested in your band. There just might be some of us who'd be quite willing to have a female singer tear our hearts out singing A Man You Don't Meet Every Day. (I mean, Cait's not around with the Pogues to do it anymore!)

Pay The Reckoning


27 Jun 01 - 05:37 AM (#492821)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Noreen

Welcome davidg.

Re the phrase you quote above, I've come across this misunderstanding before…

Now, I took out my gun,
With my dog I did shoot,

means he's going out with his hunting dog to shoot game, not that he's going to shoot the poor dog! I've heard it sung:

Well, I took out my dog,
And my gun for to shoot

which is possibly more understandable.

Good luck with the band.

Noreen


27 Jun 01 - 06:17 AM (#492827)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Aidan Crossey

Steve

Blue clicky thing to the thread you started

Blue clicky thing to advice on how to create blue clicky things


27 Jun 01 - 06:24 AM (#492831)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: GeorgeH

Tannahil Weavers also recorded this, many years ago . . (it's on one of our slices of vinyl somewhere . .)

G.


27 Jun 01 - 07:19 AM (#492848)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: MudGuard

derrymacash, that's because you wrote it as a relative url, i.e. without // at the beginning which would have made it an absolute url.

Other recordings of this song:

Bron Yale (Mudcat member Llanfair) on her "Songs from Ashdale" CD

Dubliners also recorded it (on album 30 years a-greying).

MudGuard


27 Jun 01 - 08:00 AM (#492862)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: pavane

Try this link I just found it today.


27 Jun 01 - 08:04 AM (#492864)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: pavane

It should have said Henry & Suzanne's Folksong index but I got a bracket reversed.


27 Jun 01 - 08:21 AM (#492870)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: kendall

Many people make that mistake of assuming that he shoots the dog. In the USA, we say, we are going hunting, in the UK, they go shooting. In fact, Rolls Royce used to build a "shooting brake" on which the upperclass twits would sit on their dead asses and shoot at game as they motored along. Some sport!


27 Jun 01 - 08:25 AM (#492871)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: GUEST

This was covered in a thread of Jan. 1998. Do Forum search for 'man you don't'


27 Jun 01 - 10:41 AM (#492969)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: davidg

Is it OK if we still sing that he shoots his dog? I really like it that way. And just by-the-by, on the Pogues record Cait sings "O I took out my dog and him I did shoot..." Sounds to me like the dog bought it, yes?


27 Jun 01 - 11:07 AM (#492984)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: kendall

the correct words are...I took out my gun WITH my dog I did shoot (HUNT) fuck it up if you must, but, you will get static.


27 Jun 01 - 11:59 AM (#493045)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Noreen

davidg, what did the poor dog ever do to you? *grin* The Pogues obviously misunderstood it too.

Of course you are entitled to sing it any way you wish, and whether it makes sense or not...


27 Jun 01 - 12:10 PM (#493059)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: davidg

Look, Noreen, I'm a decent sort of guy. I try to be polite, clean-living, good to my mother. I've got nothing against dogs. Some of my best friends are dogs! I just think that the song works better as a dramatic statement if Jock shoots the poor beast. By the way, do you know the George Gerdes song "Hey Packy?" George shoots Packy at the end of that one too, doesn't he?


27 Jun 01 - 01:19 PM (#493139)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: GUEST,james.quinault@cabinet-office.x.gsi.gov.uk

I know this song as Jock Stewart.

The Pogues version misses out one of the best verses of the song as I know it, which goes as follows:

I'm a piper by trade I'm a roving young blade And there's mony's the tunes I do play Sae be easy and free When you're drinking wi me etc etc


27 Jun 01 - 01:46 PM (#493163)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Anglo

With hands that were trembling I took out my gun, and aimed it at Shep's faithful head; I just couldn't do it, I wanted to run, I wished they would shoot me instead.

(from my early days of Elvis fandom - yes I know he didn't write it).

When I heard Archie introduce the song (not Old Shep), he referred to an Irish version with the "and my dog I did shoot" line as opposed to the "with my dog..." that he actually sang. Of course he might just have been having us on - that's showbiz. I had to ask him about the "canny goin' man" bit too. Exactly as LTS pointed out above.


27 Jun 01 - 04:53 PM (#493343)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Liz the Squeak

Ey oop, Ah dint knaw Ah cud spek Nyorthern, bein as I's a Suthernerr laaaasss.

LTS


27 Jun 01 - 05:05 PM (#493354)
Subject: Lyr Add: THE MAN YOU DON'T MEET EVERY DAY
From: Liam's Brother

I am fairly sure that just about every version that just about everyone has heard of this song can ultimately be traced back to the singing of Jeannie Robertson. Jeannie made a few commercial recordings of it starting in the late 1950s, I believe, that were available both in Britain and the USA and, of course, she sang it live in various places too. Jeannie's version referred to Jock Stewart.

In the notes to one or more of those JR recordings, mention is made of an Irish music hall (vaudeville) origin for the song.

It was with great interest that I came across a song entitled 'The Hard Working Miner' in a collection by George Korson of songs from Pennsylvania (Minstels of the Mine Patch). The words were composed by P.J. 'Giant' O'Neill. It was a song obviously inspired by 'I'm A Man You Don't Meet Every Day. [I recorded it on the Folk-Legacy 'Irish in America CD with a number of other fine singers and players.] O'Neill was a miner and also a former vaudevillian who had toured with an outfit called Howorth's Hibernica.

Some months afterwards, I was able to aquire a copy of the songster that was sold at Hiberica performances (no date but roughly 1880). I was very pleasantly rewarded on opening the booket to see that the 2nd song inside it was 'The Man You Don't Meet Every Day.'

Here then, is that quite old version of this song. Is it the original? I don't know but I think it is pretty safe to say that it is older than the Pogue's version.

I've a nice little cabin that's built with mud in the beautiful county Kildare;
I've acres of land and men at command and I've always a shilling to spare.
Och! I didn't come here boys to look for a job but just a short visit to pay;
And as I walk through the streets people say that I meet, "There's a man you don't meet every day."

CHORUS.
Then call for you glasses, have just what you want and whatever the damage I'll pay;
Bhoys, be airy and free when you're drinking wid me, For I'm a man you don't meet every day.

When I landed in Glasgow, what a sight met my eyes as I first put my foot on the shore;
There was Felix O' Donough, Blind Barney McGurk and around two or three dozen more.
Och! murther! you ought to have seen them all stare and then they did all run away;
Said I, my spalpeens, do you think I'm a ghost because I'm a man you don't meet every day.

I'm in love with a nice little girl in the town and we're going to be married today;
And if you come over a twelvemonth from now, a right welcome to you I will pay;
And I think I can show you a little spalpeen who will then be able to say
To my friends and companions, while pointing me out, "There's a man you don't meet every day."

The song has been in Australia, by the way, but I'll leave it to Australian Mudcatters to tell you about that.

All the best,
Dan Milner


27 Jun 01 - 06:54 PM (#493460)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Snuffy

Isn't there a version in Stan Hugill's 'Shanties of the Seven Seas'? And what sort of date would that be?


27 Jun 01 - 07:00 PM (#493473)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: kendall

Shooting the dog is too drastic a change from the overall mood of the song. The speaker is relating all the good stuff in his life, so, why would he throw in such a distasteful task? It makes no sense to me.


27 Jun 01 - 10:01 PM (#493577)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Susan A-R

Folk process??? Just picked up that Archie Fisher recording and it is lovely.


27 Jun 01 - 10:07 PM (#493582)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: dick greenhaus

Back in the 40's, I heard a version sung to the tune of Believe Me If All Those Endearing Young Charms. That's the tune for the version in Hugill (The First of the Emigrants).


27 Jun 01 - 11:40 PM (#493643)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Bob Bolton

G'day (particularly Liam's Brother, Snuffy & dick greenhaus),

The Australian version I slip in with a nice collected waltz (the words collected from Alan Offa of Toowoomba, Queensland - who sang it to another tune well known in Australia) is just a short part - basically the first verse and chorus - of the one quoted above by Liam's Brother. There are longer versions here and all seem to come from Irish (or stage Irish) music Hall versions. I would see the one above as Irish, rather than the Poms sending up the Paddys.

The waltz tune to which I sing these words is related to My Home is on the Cold Cold Ground ... the tune used by Moore for his verse Believe Me If All Those Endearing Young Charms (one of his more sincere verses, since it referred to his wife's ailment). Stan Hugill's song is even closer to the well known version and is about an English sailor who stops in Australia to dig for gold ... after 20 years he announces he is going back to the girl who waits for him ... and the English make fun of the Irish?!?

Snuffy: Given the location and the goldfields concerned, the origins of Hugill's song would be between early 1850s (when a sailor ancestor of mine, Jan van Kampen, jumped ship and scarpered up to the Turon Goldfields) and circa 1875. Of course, the song could be written much later but that is the period when such things could have happened in those locations.

Regards,

Bob Bolton


28 Jun 01 - 12:20 AM (#493656)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: GUEST

"My lodging is on the cold ground"- song and tune in Vocal Music or The Songsters Companion, 1775, and Vocal Enchantress, p. 236, 1783; Tune = "I loe no a laddie but ain"; Scots Musical Museum #267; = that for Moore's song, "Believe me if all those endearing young charms"; Moore's Irish Melodies, II, #12 (1808)


28 Jun 01 - 06:34 AM (#493766)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Aidan Crossey

Have to take issue with Kendall's comment about a "correct" version of this song. (The points are relevant to many other songs which exist in different versions.)

It would appear that there are versions of this song which have evolved differently over time ie the Irish version where Jock Stewart takes out his dog "And him I did shoot down in the County Kildare", the version I heard my dad sing many years ago and the English version where the dog merely accompanies Jock.

(I think most of us could agree which dog we'd rather have been!)

Correctness is not really the issue. Both versions are "correct" in the context of how they have evolved.

Another example illustrates my point. There are at least three versions of Arthur McBride floating about which are widely known. The version which both Paul Brady and Bob Dylan have recorded, the version recorded by Planxty and a version (which I haven't heard recorded, but which many of my friends are familiar with) which I learnt from my family which is different again from each of these. There doesn't appear to me to be much point in debating the "correctness" of these. They've evolved through different paths is all.


28 Jun 01 - 06:47 AM (#493771)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Liz the Squeak

English? Irish?? His name is JOCK STEWART for heaven's sake. He couldn't be more Scottish if he were Hamish MacHamish of Hamish town near Glasgow!!!

Alright, as the song is in Geordie I will concede that he could be from Northumberland, but as far as most Englishers are concerned that's Scotland!!!

LTS


28 Jun 01 - 07:10 AM (#493780)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Bob Bolton

G'day Liz TS,

Yes, but if you go back to the last time this song did the rounds, you will see the the Stewart family song is a comparatively modern re-write over the older Irish (or 'Stage' Irish) song. Neither is "Correct", but we need to be clear about which we are speaking at any particular moment.

Regards,

Bob Bolton


28 Jun 01 - 07:12 AM (#493783)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Aidan Crossey

Surely the fact of the way that folk music has evolved means that songs and tunes which have emerged in one place get passed along to another in which place they take on a life of their own and evolve separately.

So, for example, tunes from Scotland which have become "naturalised" in Ireland include Rakish Paddy and Money Musk. Songs from England which have "naturalised" in Ireland include The Banks Of The Roses. There are many songs from Scotland where the tunes or tunes and lyrics have established themselves as part of the Irish canon, e.g. Peggy Gordon, Carnlough Bay, Come By The Hills, etc.

It appears that "A Man You Don't Meet Every Day" also naturalised here and, in the process, the meaning of one of the verses changed. But that doesn't mean that the version which has evolved separately is not correct ... just different.


28 Jun 01 - 07:42 AM (#493793)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: kendall

I dont really care which version is most authentic. I'm stating that shooting the dog makes no sense. Look what he is saying in the rest of the song. He is listing all the good things about his life, then suddenly, he shoots his dog? It reminds me of Stan Friebergs "History of the US". George Washington is berating Betsy Ross about the flag she made, he says "Wait a minute, stars? I said Polka dots!! Stars with stripes? how does that work together, design wise?" IT DOESN'T!

Shooting the freekin' dog makes NO sense!!


28 Jun 01 - 07:57 AM (#493796)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Noreen

I agree totally, Kendall.


28 Jun 01 - 09:03 AM (#493833)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: davidg

OK - Maybe I was too terse in my previous explanation of why Jock shoots his dog. So here's the full version. When I first heard this song on the Pogues record I thought it was beautiful. I figured out the chords and wrote down the words and I'd play it and my wife would sing it and she enjoyed the way the melody hung on her voice but she was uncomfortable every time she got to the part about shooting the dog. But we loved the song so much that we kept coming back to it. You know how the way you think about a song can change after you've sung and heard it a bunch of times? Well. that's what happened, one day it just clicked. The reason he shoots the dog is because HE HAS TO! The dog has taken sick or gotten old. He's recounting his story in a pub where he is not known. (Otherwise, why would he have to recount his story?) Perhaps his fellow patrons are impressed by his acres of land and men he commands, but this is not mere bragging. Jock himself is marveling at the irony that no matter what he has, no matter how much he is envied, he has this pain that all his possessions can't shield him from. And the pain is probably exacerbated by the fact that all these gomers that he's drinking with can't see beyond his riches. It just occurred to me that this song is a lot like "Richard Cory" in that regard. Would you say that, in that song, it makes no sense that he kills himself because the preceding verses have detailed his seemingly happy life? Anyhoo, that's what I think and that's why I love this song and, I should add, credit where credit due, many (most) of these ideas were my wife's. I'll be interested in what you think.


28 Jun 01 - 09:10 AM (#493837)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: IanC

I thought the whole point of the song was that the bloke was an outlaw because, when out with his dog & gun, he shot a man. Don't tell me I've been wrong all these years (again).

Cheers!
Ian


28 Jun 01 - 09:37 AM (#493856)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: GUEST,UB Dan

Kendall post 1:
"the correct words are...I took out my gun WITH my dog I did shoot (HUNT) fuck it up if you must, but, you will get static. "

Kendall post 2:

"I dont really care which version is most authentic. I'm stating that shooting the dog makes no sense...It reminds me of Stan Friebergs "History of the US". George Washington ...says "Wait a minute, stars? I said Polka dots!! Stars with stripes? how does that work together, design wise?" IT DOESN'T!

Shooting the freekin' dog makes NO sense!! ""

UB Dan Post: Is it right vs. wrong or is it what makes since to you? You know we ended up with the flag with stars and bars [it might also be helpful to remember that Stan Frieberg's "History of the US" should not be confused with the history of the US]...and davidg gives a good clear definition of the 'sense' of the song. Notice that the Pogues version is slow and more haunting...the voice singing that song isn't partying and laughing. DavidG, sing it the way you want...I guess the worst that can happen is you'll be compared to the Pogues. I don't think that's such an awful fate at all.


28 Jun 01 - 10:34 AM (#493921)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: davidg

Thanks, Dan, I was starting to think the whole world was against me! By the way, does UB stand for (my alme mater) University of Buffalo?


28 Jun 01 - 11:28 AM (#493989)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: GUEST,UB Dan

nope, sorry...it stands for Uisce Beatha (band name). DavidG, there seem to be 2 schools of thought here at mudcat on the issue of whether songs can or should be dynamic. Some feel the words and even tune can change with your mood and others feel that the copy of the song with the oldest date is always "correct" and all others are abominations. I lean towards the more dynamic. You can even hear contemporary musicians, whose authorship of the song is, sing a song differently than they've written it. This is what I like about live music. This is what some here call the folk process. But I also understand why some people get upset at singers who just don't want to bother with learning an existing tune and just sing nonsense instead of perfectly good words. This isn't the case with this song. You heard it the way the Pogues did it and the feel is entirely different...The song has changed from being about a rich and boastful man trying to impress everyone around him into a song about a man who wants people around him due to his grief at not being able to save his faithful friend despite his earthly possessions. It might even be the same man...just on a different day.



p.s. in my previous post "what makes since" should be "what makes sense" maybe my typing has aquired a southern drawl.


28 Jun 01 - 12:02 PM (#494016)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: davidg

Dan, you're right about the 2 different schools and I tend to favor the more dynamic side as well. My feeling is that if you want to hear an exact replica of Clarence Ashley's "The Cuckoo," you should listen to the record. The great example of someone who fools around with his material, of course, is Bob Dylan. I was lucky enough to be one of the lottery winners for the chance to buy a ticket to one of his "return" concerts with The Band in 1974. What no news coverage ever said was that there were a fair number of people, at the show I was at, at least, who unequivocally did not care for what they felt was the butchering of his (their?) early songs. Me, I loved it. And, partly it was because of the time and the place. He was playing the over-the-top arena rock star to an arena full of fans. He's still almost my favorite singer (George Jones #1) and he has about a 3-note range. But he still puts a song across like almost nobody else. I could go on... and on...But tell me Dan - are you a member of Uisce Beatha? What kind of music? Any recordings available? davidg


28 Jun 01 - 12:16 PM (#494033)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: kendall

I go on what makes sense to me. Shooting the dog simply does not fit the rest of the song.


28 Jun 01 - 12:29 PM (#494047)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Liam's Brother

I believe Kendall is entirely correct. The dog is a shooting partner not a target.

However, when someone mishears the words, 'Jock Stewart' becomes a story of the most difficult time in the relationship between a guy and his pooch. What are you gonna do?


28 Jun 01 - 01:19 PM (#494083)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: GUEST,UB Dan

Well kendall, I can't make it "make sense" for you [here's the water, horse]. Why does it make more sense that the guy says he went out hunting? Here he is in a bar with a bunch of people, he brags about his wealth, his land, and his minions, he offers to by everyone a drink and then explains "I went hunting"?

It is also not a mis-hearing on the part of DavidG...the words are written in the jacket of the Pogues album...The Pogues might have misheard it, but what resulted was a haunting song delivered by Old Yeller's owner while drowning his sorrows in a bar...and buying a round for the other customers.

Liam's brother's song makes lots of sense, but even the song you are talking about only resembles it a little bit...it avoids the topic of dogs altogether.


28 Jun 01 - 04:06 PM (#494199)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: kendall

It's really quite simple. The man is a hunter, his dog is a hunting dog. Where are you getting this "pub" scene? None of the lyrics of the version I know sound like anything of the sort. The bloke sounds quite content with his life. I must admit I have never heard the Pogues version, but, thats the beauty of the folk process. If a bluegrass band can get away with driving the piss out of "Make me a pallet" I guess one could make a dirge out of Jock Stewart.


28 Jun 01 - 04:50 PM (#494231)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: GUEST,UB Dan

The pub scene derives from:

So come fill up your glasses with Brandy and wine
whatever the cost I will pay

as well as the recurring chorus:
so be easy and free, when you're DRINKING with me

or in Liam's Brother's alternate and pre-existing version: Then call for you glasses, have just what you want and whatever the damage I'll pay;
Bhoys, be airy and free when you're drinking wid me, For I'm a man you don't meet every day.


I understand that the dog is a hunting dog in the version you are talking about...I just don't see that it makes sooooo much more sense that he went hunting, than that he had to put his dog down.

I'm beginning to think we may be talking about to vastly different songs. Liam's Brother posted the lyrics to a song that is vastly different from the Pogues interpretation. Here are the words to the song I've been refering to:

Oh my name is Jock Stewart I'm a canny gun man
And a roving young fellow I've been

So be easy and free when you're drinking with me
I'm a man you don't meet every day

I have acres of land I have men at command
I have always a shilling to spare

So be easy ....

So come fill up your glasses of brandy and wine
Whatever it costs I will pay

So be easy ...

Well I took out my dog and him I did shoot
All down in the county Kildare

So be easy ...

I understand where your coming from Kendall, and if you choose to say the guy went hunting that's fine. I wouldn't say you were f*cking it up and that you should expect to be mocked. I'm just saying let The Pogues, DougG, and myself sing it with the old yeller ending. Rereading some of the posts, I realized derrymacash summed up my thoughts far better and far more diplomatically. I welcome Liam's brothers scholarly knowledge and find it very valuable... but kendall's simple dismissal of this version of the song as being incorrect AND non-sensical needed to be addressed.


28 Jun 01 - 05:46 PM (#494273)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Bat Goddess

Uh, as much as I enjoy The Pogues, they are not exactly what I would call sticklers for tradition -- and I certainly don't think they claim to be. They often play fast and loose with accepted traditional lyrics to make a point, fit an arrangement or just plain because they feel like it (or maybe even don't know any better).

The folk process DOES work its way on traditional words whether because the singer heard it wrong to begin with or the brain somehow segues into the "new" words after singing it for awhile. Best advice is to sing what makes sense, be aware of various versions and know WHY you sing it the way you do. First rule is check the source singer -- especially if there is only one collected version. Don't change anything that you wouldn't want to be the only source left for a future collector/historian.

Bat Goddess


28 Jun 01 - 05:46 PM (#494274)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: kendall

Whatever


28 Jun 01 - 06:05 PM (#494290)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Liz the Squeak

DavidG, sing it the way you want...I guess the worst that can happen is you'll be compared to the Pogues. I don't think that's such an awful fate at all.

Awful fate?? You seen Shane McGowan?? There's a face only a mother could love..... Teeth like tombstones, a voice like a bag of gravel being tipped down a corrugated tin roof and ears like a London Cab with the doors open....

And the Pogues have corrupted/altered more lyrics than any Microsoft Spellchecker.....

LTS


28 Jun 01 - 06:20 PM (#494305)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: davidg

Say what you will about Shane, LTS, but, tell me - heard much from the Pogues since they gave him the boot? As far as I'm concerned they were the best rock band in the world for about 3 or 4 years. And what's wrong with a little corruption now and again?


28 Jun 01 - 07:06 PM (#494340)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Bill D

*grin*...one of the very first long, serious, discussion threads we had here (back in '97)was titled The Curse of Poguery

it is a good read, but I would NOT suggest refreshing it...


28 Jun 01 - 08:05 PM (#494364)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: GUEST,Nick Dow

The man you don't meet is considered by many to be scots in origin. It probably isn't. In fact it derives from the music Hall. Sorry about that, along with other songs that we now consider to be folk i.e. Jim the Carter Lad, Out in the Greenfields, Buttercup Joe etc.. The song was originaly an urban composition and adopted by the rural singers late in the nineteenth century, when it was taken up by the broadside press. The earlier versions keep the comic/rural bumpkin image with the Irish connection quoted above (Don't think Ive come over to look for a job, it's only a visit to pay) I collected and published the song fifteen years ago when I visited my best informant 85 year old Bill House of Beaminster Dorset the son of George House who sang to the Hammond Brothers in 1907. Bills grandson Norman still sings his dads song in the Dorset clubs to this day. Interestingly enough in 1908 the Hammond brothers noted that the Dorset rural singers had a repertoire that seemed remakably similar to the lowland Scots singers (See the Folk song journal 1908 {I think}) No idea why! I gave the version I collected to Dave Burland, I've no idea if he's singing it. By the way Doc Rowe colllected a similar version up the road in Somerset. I hope this helps Nick Dow


28 Jun 01 - 08:56 PM (#494388)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Bat Goddess

Curmudgeon here. Check out #110, The First of the Emigrants, in the Oxford Book of Sea Songs, Roy Palmer, ed. The notes date this song from the Australian Gold Rush of 1851.

So fill up yor glasses, and drink what you please
For no matter's the damage oh I'll pay.
So be aisy and free whils't you're drinking with me
Sure I'm the man you don't meet every day.

Good songs to all -- Tom


28 Jun 01 - 11:27 PM (#494465)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Bob Bolton

H'day yet again,

I think we need to keep in mind which version (of many) we are discussing. If we talk about Jock Stewart, we aren't talking about a "Folk Song" ... certainly not in the sense that means "It's an old, anonymous, song that has lots of different forms, so I can sing it however I want to".

The Jock Stewart version is a (comparatively) recently written song by and/or about an identifiable person and sung by his family and descendants. To slander Jock by cheerfully accusing him of callously killing his favourite hunting companion might get your rocks off ... but singing it too close to a bunch of Stewarts could have the same effect.

Regards,

Bob Bolton


29 Jun 01 - 06:20 AM (#494603)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Aidan Crossey

Dan ...

Thanks for the kind words regarding my posting. It was intended to be helpful and if at least some people found it so, then it hasn't been wasted.

I've been known to get quite heated about the issue of people changing songs to suit themselves. (There is a fairly infamous episode at my now-wife's birthday party some years ago where I ordered someone to leave because they were attempting to chime in with me on a song, but insisted in taking it off on their own particular tangent much to my annoyance. Needless to say the drink was in, the sense was out and I reacted out of all proportion.)

In this particular case I don't think it's a case of an incorrect rendering of a song ... just the rendering of a different version. I'm quite prepared to accept the arguments of those who claim that the Scottish/Northumbrian version is the source version. But I would give the Irish version a right to co-exist alongide it as a variant in its own right.

And let's not overlook the important thing which strikes me as I review all of the debate about this number.

There are a large number of people scattered throughout the world who care sufficiently passionately about this genre of music to argue amongst themslves about matters which to the uninformed and uninterested observer must seem like mere minutiae. These are the very people who will ensure that folk and traditional music does not die and that many generations hence people will still sing about Jock Stewart and his dog (and maybe some more versions of the song will emerge in the ensuing period and give rise to more heated debate).


29 Jun 01 - 07:12 AM (#494625)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: kendall

Remember the Invincible knight at the bridge in Monty Python and the holy grail? "Alright then. we'll call it a draw."


29 Jun 01 - 07:28 AM (#494632)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Aidan Crossey

A draw's an honourable result! Why don't we all buy each other a virtual pint and drink to our very good health. Here we all are and there's none like us!

Slainte.


30 Jun 01 - 06:09 AM (#495314)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: GUEST,Ewan McVicar

Fascinating stuff.
According to the Porter and Gower book, what Jeannie Robertson sang was "For I took out my gun, and my dog I did show't All down by the River Clare." I shall not attempt to explain "show't". In the book is an interesting consideration of the Irish influences on [rather than Irish origin of] the tune and chorus text. There I think no Scottish River Clare. Is there one in Ireland?
On the other hand, in Sheila Stewart's own new booklet she says it was written about a relative of hers. I only skimmed the booklet yesterday, but I do not think she states who she believes wrote it.
By the way, as Porter and Gower observe, there is another totally dissimilar song of the same title in the Greig Duncan collection.


22 Apr 07 - 11:34 PM (#2033097)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: GUEST,robert s

I have searched in vain for the lyrics of a beautiful version of this song sung by the Yorshire singer Bill Price about a man having to leave for war and he beckons all to gather round as he buys his last round. Anyone heard of this version?


22 Apr 07 - 11:54 PM (#2033113)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: GUEST,meself

'I shall not attempt to explain "show't"'

Everyone must have been sick of the subject by the time this was posted, since no one bothered to INSIST that Mr McVicar explain it - and "show't" is key to understanding his version of the verse in question, and most of the thread consists of arguments about that verse ...

Anyone have an explanation?


23 Apr 07 - 12:07 AM (#2033116)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Peace

"I have searched in vain for the lyrics of a beautiful version of this song sung by the Yorshire singer Bill Price"

Try e-mail to his daughter.

ruth 'at' ruthprice.com


23 Apr 07 - 03:34 PM (#2033681)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Barry Finn

Is it only the Pouges version where the dog gets shot? I've never heard another, is there another?

I believe Shelia's grand dad or great grand dad was named Jock & was a fiddler.

Barry


24 Apr 07 - 11:43 AM (#2034414)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: GEST

For the record, before they became Great Big Sea, the group did a variant which was arranged by Jacgui St. Croix on their 1991 Rankin Street Tape - Live From The Blarneystone. The title was: I'm A Man You Don't Meet Every Day, and it was performed to the air, Believe Me If All Those Endearing Young Charms. :)

GEST Songs of Newfoundland and Labrador


24 Apr 07 - 01:38 PM (#2034526)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Rog Peek

The version I pretty well copy when I'm singing this one is that by Dougie MacLean on the CRM album with Alex Campbell, Alan Roberts & Dougie MacLean.

Jock Stewart

Oh my name is Jock Stewart
An' I'm a canny young man
But a roving young fellow I've been

Chorus:
So be easy and free
When you're courtin' wi' me
I'm a man you'll no' meet every day

Though I've acres of land
I've got men at command
But my money I foolishly spent

chorus

So I took out my gun
With my dog I did go
All down by the banks of the Tay

chorus

So come fill up your glass
With whisky and beer
And no matter the cost I will pay

chorus

When it comes to the gun and the dog it's not atall controversial, a cold blooded dog murder or a quiet stroll along the banks of the Tay. You can choose your own ending.


23 Jul 07 - 10:11 AM (#2109229)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Alaska Mike

I've sung this song for many years and only heard the verse about shooting at or with the dog recently. I agree with Kendall though, the guy is relating the good times and shooting the dog seems wrong in the story. Here are the verses I've been singing.

Jock Stewart

Oh My name is Jock Stewart, I'm a Canny Gaun man,
And a roving young fellow I've been.

    So be easy and free when you're drinking with me
    I'm a man you don't meet every day.

And at sup have I sat with both bottle and friend,
'Tis a rare man who dare ask for more.

Let us spend well the hours and the vintage of life,
And we'll share them as well as we may.

So come fill up your glass with whiskey or wine,
And whatever the price I will pay.


13 Mar 08 - 09:02 AM (#2287283)
Subject: RE: Help: (I'm a) A Man You Don't Meet Every Day
From: Mr Happy

There쳌fs a post on this thread from Liam쳌fs Brother dated 27 Jun 01, which has a version of 쳌eJock Stewart쳌f , but seems very reminiscent of this song:



Do you want your old lobby washed down?

I쳌fve a nice little cot and a small piece of land
And a place that is down by the sea
And I care about no one 쳌ecause I believe
That no body cares about me
My peace is destroyed and I'm fairly annoyed
By a lassie that lives in the town
She cries every day as she passes my way
Do you want your old lobby washed down?

CHORUS

Do you want your old lobby washed down con shine?
Do you want your old lobby washed down?
She cries every day as she passes my way
Do you want your old lobby washed down?

The other day the old landlord came round for his rent
And I told him no money I had
Besides 'twas not fair for to ask me to pay
As the times were so awfully bad
He seemed discontent at not getting his rent
And he shook his old head with a frown
Says he I'll take half
And said I with a laugh
Do you want your old lobby washed down?

Now the boys of the town when they go a-courting
They seem to be terribly shy
For to kiss a young maid
Sure they seem half afraid
But they would if they could on the sly
But me, I do things in a different way
And I don't give a fuss or a frown
When I goes to court
I says here goes for sport
Do you want your old lobby washed down?


Does anyone know which would쳌fve been the original?