Mudcat Café message #1477172 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #80784   Message #1477172
Posted By: shepherdlass
03-May-05 - 01:25 PM
Thread Name: Why did Ewan MacColl write new songs?
Subject: RE: Why did Ewan MacColl write new songs?
GregF - there's no need to be so grudging. If you want to research something but have no idea where to start, why not ask people who may have a bit more experience than you?

Anyway, I'm with DaveS on this one - MacColl wrote lots of truly great songs and he wrote some poor ones. Ditto Dylan. Here we come to the processes of tradition again - it tends to be the good ones that get picked up and reworked again and again, and both MacColl and Dylan are responsible for a large number of these.

MurkeyChris - I'm wondering if you are querying why the self-appointed arbiter of things traditional chose to write new songs? That's an interesting debate. MacColl is so fascinating because of this - you can love the songs and the radio ballads but dislike his prescriptive approach to authenticity. The contradictions in his various approaches might make a dissertation in itself. There's an online resource called the Working Class Movement Library that has loads of info on MacColl. And to reiterate previous comments you should definitely get hold of MacColl's autobiography, "Journeyman" if you haven't already done so - one trip to the library could save you loads of time online.