Mudcat Café message #3894391 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #162666   Message #3894391
Posted By: Jim Carroll
17-Dec-17 - 02:42 PM
Thread Name: New Book: Folk Song in England
Subject: RE: New Book: Folk Song in England
"You see what I had in mind was, we could take each of Walter's songs and place it alongside the broadside it came from and sort out the bits that Walter left out that were rubbish. "
Walter left nothing out
He was not really a singer as such - he was present when the family sang at Harvest Suppres and home gatherings - tto young to remember the former, during th latter he was allocated 'Dark Eyed Sailor' because "Nobody else wanted that"
When he returned from the army, his uncles had died so he decided to put the family repertoire down in a notebook, so he visited all the elders and wrote them down as they remembered them - he memorised the tuns on his melodeon
He didn't sing publicly until he was recoded by Bill Leader.
Over the thirty years he had remembered virtually all of them and where he hadn't got full ones he asked around for missing verses.
He divided all his songs into genres, as did most singers we recorded
It's these genres I wish to discuss, not individual songs
Walter can be regarded as a collector with no connection to other singers or researchers as much as he was a singer.
"broadsheets had as their sole motive composing for the sake of money,"
Sorry Dick - broadside writing was an urban-based commercial occupation constructed on conveyor-belt lines - the songs were churned out simply to make money
They didn't even have the merits of the Irish "ballads" which were sold around the fairs (I seem to remember you sent me one about a footballer)
The Travellers who sold them were illiterate and recited them to printers straight from memory - a sort of printed oral tradition
Jim Carroll