Mudcat Café message #3939642 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #162666   Message #3939642
Posted By: Jim Carroll
26-Jul-18 - 11:09 AM
Thread Name: New Book: Folk Song in England
Subject: RE: New Book: Folk Song in England
"Lloyd doesn't explain that in 'Folk Song in England', which supports my criticism of his approach in that book"
He didn't have to - he'd already made the information available elsewhere
If that was a condition of writing such a book Roud's version would have been three times the size it already was
This song has only become an issue because later researchers have chosen to question it - as far as I'm concerned, without reason.

"why Harker was asking Lloyd about it in the first place."
Harker bent over backwards to undermine what earlier researchers wrote - why should we do the same?
I can't see how MacColl's notes can do anything but add to the information on the song - Ewan and Bert were friends (for a time) and all Ewan had to do was to ask Bert for the details
They certainly don't contradict anything Bert said:
"Text communicated by J. S. Bell" (presumably to 'Coal' Magazine)
" Tune and fragment - J. Dennison. of Walker" - presumably a live informant when Lloyd was engaged in his project

"which would be dishonest, fake."
Can't speak fro anybody else, but I never went to a folk club where the singers took an oath of authenticity that what they were singing was authentic - on the contrary, everybody assumed they were arrangements - nowadays there's an unhealthy tendency to copyright thos alterations as "arranged by"
Sorry - I'm getting a little lost here
I think it's a little different when they are published as genuine and are not - it is claimed that Bert did this but never proven 100%

I believe that Bert's failings of 'scholarship' were down to the fact that, rather than being an 'academic' he was an enthusiastic researcher who people want to be an academic.
Bert wrote Folk Song in England shortly after he and Ewan had attempted to draw the various strands of the revival together at a meeting in Central London and had been scuppered in doing so   
Ewan went off and created his own band of disciples and Bert wrote and made some of the finest radio programmes of folk music ever produced
For that, I'd have forgiven both of them if I'd come home to find them in bed with my mother!

As far as Bert's working class credentials are concerned, I never heard him speaking with a 'gpr blimey' accent or claiming his father worked "down t'pit
He was what he was - the son of a loweer middle-class accountant who fought as a private in the trenches, and a mother who was the daughter of a printer
Bert's contact with the working class - as an assisted passage emigrant to Australia who tried his hand at sheep farming was good
credentials for me to be trusted as being knowledgeable on working class culture

I am always disturbed by the smugness of hindsight that often surrounds discussions about Bert, Sharp and others (including Child, it would appear)
I think Mark Antony had it about right at Caesar's funeral.

I don't care if a song is sung by a chartered accountant or a high-court Judge (like Stephen Sedley) as long as they don't make a mess of it - it is who is likely to have made them that concerns me

This is getting far too long - I'll come back if I've missed anything
I'll certainly come back to deal with the "leftie pop star" son of a blacklisted iron moulder (who was transported back from Australia for his Trades Union activity), who grew up and educated himself in depression-hit Salford and co-founded an agit prop theatre to perform at factory gate meetings during the massive cotton strikes
That is an appalling misrepresentation of one of the greatest benefactors in these Islands   
I'll go and take a few pills I think!!
Jim