Mudcat Café Message Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafeawe

User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
GUEST,Tom Bliss Is traditional song finished? (621* d) RE: Is traditional song finished? 13 Mar 10

I really don't have time for this any more. Hilary Benn has just given me a stonking interview on how we might survive climate change, and I relly need to cut it into the show. Plus I have to do the housework and learn 5 new original songs for the new band (oops, did I say that out loud).

But before I go, I'll say this, not because Jim Carroll will take any notice, but because I feel I owe it to myself.

I'm going to put out of my mind the image I have of a school bully going round thumping smaller boys and then spreading his hands when tackled by a teacher.

I'm going to give him the benefit of the doubt, and allow that he simply cannot see where the sum total of his comments leads.

The problem is that he is applying values from the middle of the 20th century to the challenges of the second decade of the 21st.

The songwriters and singers he champions have all passed on. No-one can book them. Instead, we have a clutch of excellent writers and performers who have some similarities with those of the early revival, but they are children of a different time, so they march to a different drum. It is unreasonable to apply the priorities of the former to the latter.

The number of fellow 'experts/collectors' has dwindled to a handful. There is, however, a healthy number of extremely well informed and motivated champions for heritage music - but they're coming from a slightly different place, so they work in a different way.

The Revival has become co-mingled with another popular singing movement, to the point where it's almost impossible to tell one from the other. Anyone operating in the field has to work within this reality.

The type of club Jim Carroll espouses was always in a minority. They required draconian intervention and a majority of organisers were not prepared to intervene to that extent. As a result the movement was disparate from the outset.

The situation changed in the 80s for demographic not quality reasons.

Today, we have a continuum, from clubs that would (I suspect) meet with Carroll's approval to Anything Goes. We can define one end of the spectrum, but not the other - it fades out into popular music. And we simply cannot draw any middle line. It is, therefore completely impossible and unreasonable for anyone, least of all someone who rarely visits UK clubs, to prescribe what constitutes 'flying the flag' and what doesn't - it is a matter for individual clubs, working towards what they want to achieve from what they've got.

With 400+ clubs and, say, an average of 10 mover-shakers per club, that's well over 4,000 people who 'who feel a responsibility to those who make the effort to come and listen' and who make day-to-day 'judgements' about what they'll allow, and what they'll seek to discourage. They are doing the work, they should be allowed to set the rules without being sniped at.

The terminology has changed though popular (mis)use. Promotion, such as naming a club, must use the language of the potential audience if it's to be understood. If folk means pop to the audience, then that's what it's called.

Jim Carroll seeks to deny all this. He rejects outright the honest experiences voiced by Crow Sister, Brian Peters and me. Fat earth? I should co-co. There is no point in discussing this as long as that situation persists.

He asks me to dredge up quotes. I'm sure I could if I have time and could be bothered, but it would be pointless for two reasons. First, the problems arise from the cumulative effect of his flawed logic, not individual sentences, and second, when presented with quotes in black and white, he merely swears black IS white.

He persists in saying that I am calling all music Folk. I am not. I am very careful what I call folk and generally avoid the word altogether. I am reporting what others honestly believe, and which is therefore reasonable.

Jim Carroll needs to understand that he is trying to referee a baseball match using rounders law.

It is simply not fair.

Tom Bliss

Post to this Thread -

Back to the Main Forum Page

By clicking on the User Name, you will requery the forum for that user. You will see everything that he or she has posted with that Mudcat name.

By clicking on the Thread Name, you will be sent to the Forum on that thread as if you selected it from the main Mudcat Forum page.
   * Click on the linked number with * to view the thread split into pages (click "d" for chronologically descending).

By clicking on the Subject, you will also go to the thread as if you selected it from the original Forum page, but also go directly to that particular message.

By clicking on the Date (Posted), you will dig out every message posted that day.

Try it all, you will see.