Mudcat Café message #3884229 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #162917   Message #3884229
Posted By: Jim Carroll
24-Oct-17 - 06:35 AM
Thread Name: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
"You denigrate, frequently and at length, the current English folk scene."
As someone with a foot in both camps (research and performance - now more enjoyment than participation), I question what it has to do with folk song as I know it and how it is documented Jed - hence my uncalled for outburst, for which I apologise.
I don't approach song as an intellectual exercise, I still sing and still get great pleasure in listening to good singing.
My active experience of the revival (a quarter of a century) was one with no contradiction between research and performance - one fed, even relied on the other.
THat is no longer the case and the research side has become the loser - even the cracks are beginning to show there.
If the gap is now unbreachable, we really need to know and a good start might be that we be told what now passes for folk music nowadays.
Chris Wright's contribution makes sense to me, though I have to say, commercialism hadn't taken the grip when I left that it has now.
The revival, through the skiffle scene, was a reaction to the pap pop music industry of those days - a chance for Everyman to become a creative performer - now it seems Mammon has his foot firmly in the door as you pointed out in your earlier post "Some of us are professional or semi-professional musicians of skill and experience,"
With the greatest respect, the secen was not about those who wished to make a living from it - it was not a problem, but neither was it an objective - now it appears to be just that for so many - too many.
I have no problem with new songs - I sing them and I see tham as essential to the future of our music - the people I respect most made more new songs than any other performer in the revival.
THe demise of the revival bothers me because without it everything I have done over the last half century will be, like your balaclava "something to stuff my head into".
We recorded from live performers who had something to say about our lives, our culture and our history - understanding their message cannot happen as an academic exercise.
I disagree with something else you just said
"Wild Mountain Thyme," but it is not remotely "folk."
The song is an excellent example of how a written and published song can become part of an oral tradition - I suggest you dig out Elizabeth's Cronin's 'Braes of Balquidder' to see what I mean
Jim Carroll