Mudcat Café message #3875688 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #162666   Message #3875688
Posted By: Jim Carroll
07-Sep-17 - 11:46 AM
Thread Name: New Book: Folk Song in England
Subject: RE: New Book: Folk Song in England
"that he thinks I am attacking the central core of his beliefs"
I don't Vic - I just made my own position clear
I raised the point when you mentioned "selling" to dispel any idea that anybody was profiting from circulating the programmes.
We did/still do so because we feel they are worth it
They were programmes that could be improved, given hindsight, but since nobody has ever really tried, it's academic.
I have little doubt that legally they still belong to the Beeb (if they still exist) - and that goes for anything they ever produced
Morally is a different matter
The singers were paid pittances, if at all, and the minute the material was collected the sharks began to circle - copyright claims, marketed recordings paid for by the licence fee, "arrangements".... and above all, disinterest has led to the most important collection of recorded British traditional song being neglected and made virtually inaccessible until it was too late to assist in helping elevate folk music to the position it deserves.
When the Critics Group broke up a few of us continued to meet (in an already established workshop set up for raw beginners)
We threw in any material we had, including Ewan and Peggy's generously shared collection of field recordings
This also included recordings of some of the albums some of us had
This gradually formed itself into an archive of several thousand tapes
That archive has now been digitised, listed and partly annotated and is up for grabs for any club or organisation that is prepared to treat it with respect and not lock it up in a cupboard somewhere
It also includes our own field recordings - with the same stipulation
So far, it's been an uphill struggle to find a home for it other than academic institutions which will lock it up fro posterity - not what we want.
I have always though EFDSS might be a natural home, but looking at their present output - maybe not!
Our collection (as it was then), was the first to expand the interests of the then British Institute of Recorded Sound (later National Sound Archive and later still The National Sound Archive at the British Library) from an almost solely musicological group to one encompassing British Traditional music - back in the early eighties
Thirty years later Walter Pardon and his companions still stare through the bars of the prison he was locked in, inaccessible to the world at large all those years ago - somewhat disolusioning
Never mind - Ireland might make better use of it while we're still above ground - the signs are promising!
It's always seemed to me that, despite the decline, there are enough people around taking the music seriously enough to get together and make a a serious attempt to put 'The Voice of the People' back on the map without faffing around over whether Elvis was a folk singer because somebody once sang 'Red Suede Shoes'
Our music needs taking seriously if it is to survive, and nobody will do that unless we take it seriously ourselves
I sorely miss Mike too, but he really wasn't the last word in folk-song - nobody was or is
Jim Carroll