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'Occupy English Folk Music!'

BTNG 02 Nov 11 - 07:17 PM
BTNG 02 Nov 11 - 07:25 PM
Big Al Whittle 03 Nov 11 - 07:47 AM
Big Al Whittle 03 Nov 11 - 07:52 AM
Lizzie Cornish 1 04 Nov 11 - 05:59 AM
Richard Bridge 04 Nov 11 - 07:26 AM
GUEST,blogward 04 Nov 11 - 08:16 AM
GUEST,Whitby Oyster Eater 04 Nov 11 - 10:28 AM
GUEST,petecockermouth 04 Nov 11 - 10:51 AM
Big Al Whittle 04 Nov 11 - 11:10 AM
Richard Bridge 04 Nov 11 - 11:30 AM
theleveller 04 Nov 11 - 12:05 PM
Big Al Whittle 04 Nov 11 - 01:41 PM
Richard Bridge 04 Nov 11 - 01:46 PM
GUEST,blogward 04 Nov 11 - 02:07 PM
Big Al Whittle 04 Nov 11 - 04:36 PM
Big Al Whittle 04 Nov 11 - 04:49 PM
GUEST,blogward 04 Nov 11 - 05:16 PM
Dave the Gnome 04 Nov 11 - 05:33 PM
John P 04 Nov 11 - 07:06 PM
Richard Bridge 04 Nov 11 - 07:51 PM
Big Al Whittle 05 Nov 11 - 12:40 AM
GUEST,Shimrod 05 Nov 11 - 05:15 AM
Dave the Gnome 05 Nov 11 - 05:40 AM
Big Al Whittle 05 Nov 11 - 06:02 AM
Dave the Gnome 05 Nov 11 - 06:15 AM
GUEST,Shimrod 05 Nov 11 - 06:18 AM
Richard Bridge 05 Nov 11 - 06:36 AM
Big Al Whittle 05 Nov 11 - 07:23 AM
Dave Sutherland 05 Nov 11 - 07:49 AM
Dave the Gnome 05 Nov 11 - 07:53 AM
Richard Bridge 05 Nov 11 - 08:00 AM
GUEST,glueman 05 Nov 11 - 08:36 AM
Richard Bridge 05 Nov 11 - 08:41 AM
Big Al Whittle 05 Nov 11 - 09:36 AM
GUEST,Shimrod 05 Nov 11 - 10:03 AM
Big Al Whittle 05 Nov 11 - 10:24 AM
Dave the Gnome 05 Nov 11 - 10:45 AM
Dave the Gnome 05 Nov 11 - 10:55 AM
Dave the Gnome 05 Nov 11 - 10:57 AM
Richard Bridge 05 Nov 11 - 01:06 PM
Big Al Whittle 05 Nov 11 - 01:40 PM
BTNG 05 Nov 11 - 01:49 PM
GUEST,mudcat 05 Nov 11 - 06:46 PM
BTNG 05 Nov 11 - 06:50 PM
Richard Bridge 05 Nov 11 - 07:49 PM
Richard Bridge 05 Nov 11 - 07:51 PM
GUEST,glueman 05 Nov 11 - 08:18 PM
Big Al Whittle 06 Nov 11 - 01:50 AM
Lizzie Cornish 1 06 Nov 11 - 02:44 AM
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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: BTNG
Date: 02 Nov 11 - 07:17 PM

Yeah, live with it. As I've saidbefore if you can't handle criticism or entertain the idea that someone has opposing views to yours, or plain simply doesn't like you, you shouldn't be online at all


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: BTNG
Date: 02 Nov 11 - 07:25 PM

Subject: RE: 'Save a music and drama library'
From: peregrina - PM
Date: 02 Nov 11 - 05:59 PM

If everyone who's been posting here about a metaphorical occupation took a few minutes to write an email to help save the Yorkshire Libraries Music and Drama service it would be really great.

You don't have to reside in Yorkshire to write in--or to use the service.

Info here
here: campaign to save YLI music and drama


Finally something worth while to get ones teeth into, I've just sent off an e-mail stating my view, opposed to the closing. I'm not sure what the time frame is here, whether I've missed the deadline or not.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 03 Nov 11 - 07:47 AM

ohI don't know, if the peasants start reading, it will only make them discontented.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 03 Nov 11 - 07:52 AM

However heres the link, if you want riots and disension throughout the land.

http://www.makingmusic.org.uk/our-work/news/news/join-our-campaign-to-save-yli-music-and-drama-service


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Lizzie Cornish 1
Date: 04 Nov 11 - 05:59 AM

'Occupy The Libraries!' :0)


And now....back to English Folk Music... ;0)


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 04 Nov 11 - 07:26 AM

That, oddly, has never really been the subject of this thread, which is about a fantasy world. In that fantasy world many people with power stop many others from performing what they like, where they like, when they like and how they like. Cuckoo!


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: GUEST,blogward
Date: 04 Nov 11 - 08:16 AM

If this isn't an Occupation of English Folk Music (and speaking as an Englishman living in Glasgow I find the use of that term typically parochial) I don't know what is. (WARNING: Andean buskers video)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1DFBN0VZNYU


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: GUEST,Whitby Oyster Eater
Date: 04 Nov 11 - 10:28 AM

Interesting thread.

I wonder how Lizzie feels that singer songwriters are especially English? Are they English if they write about other places like American Indians for example?

Or do they suddenly become American? Intrigued.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: GUEST,petecockermouth
Date: 04 Nov 11 - 10:51 AM

(hello leveller, not seen your name for a wee while -hope all is well for you). here in cockermouth -now that we have dried out- we seem to punch well above our weight and have a small arts centre that attracts top acts in the folk scene, michael mcgoldrick,kris drever, eliza carthy etc and several visits from jon boden in various guises. however, there is very little in the way of local participation, sessions etc. i would like to think that all our young folk are off occupying somewhere but it isn't happening, and cumbria as a whole appears very quiet - peace, love and revolution, pete


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 04 Nov 11 - 11:10 AM

I remember Digance used to do a song called Bury My heart at Wounded Knee. Way back.

American subject but unmistakably English. I don't think its anything to do with accent, or song form. We're English. We see things through different glasses. That's why its English folksong, designed to be sung to the supposedly more intelligent people you once found in English folk clubs.

Somewhere in the 70's , it went wrong though. A very vocal and self righteous minority took possession of the part of the folk music movement with political clout. They said they were clever, but in actual fact they were deaf to the 'English' cadences in Martyn, Renbourn, Jansch, Donovan and McTell.(Yes i know Scottish in three cases, but it wasn't Jimmy Shand stuff).

There are inheritors of that proud tradition. Young Sanjay Brayne is going to be a very important one for this generation - raised as he was on his Dad's recollections of Gerry Lockran and Roger Brooks. He SO envies our generation - having met and known these great musicians. Happily he never knew the prejudice, envy and silliness that drove them to work so much abroad.

Lets hope he never does.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 04 Nov 11 - 11:30 AM

Surely the intelligentsia went to jazz clubs specifically for modern jazz, didn't they?


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: theleveller
Date: 04 Nov 11 - 12:05 PM

"(hello leveller, not seen your name for a wee while -hope all is well for you)."

Hi Peter, good to hear from you again. Yeah, I'm still alive and posting crap on message boards. Glad to hear you've dried out (so to speak), sounds good out your way. Keep the red flag flying!


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 04 Nov 11 - 01:41 PM

Quote from Roy Harper interview in The Times today:-

'Harper does however, see himself as part of an English tradition, and he wishes he were more accepted in tradtional folk circles. "I'm English. I write about things that have happened in England, and I began writing when England was coming out of the insular post-war culture," he says. "I wouldn't have minded some of my songs being included as part of the folk tradition, but the people in the folk world see me as a cabaret artist. That's sad, but not life threatening." '

You see Folkiedave - not just Lizzie and my paranoid delusions.

This is how it fell out on Friday morning -oh!


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 04 Nov 11 - 01:46 PM

So just how did that stop Harper etc "performing what they like, where they like, when they like and how they like". All that seems to have happened is that he was not regarded as performing "folk music" - which he doesn't. He's done quite well doing the singer songwriter stuff he does, so what's his beef? I bet that folk clubs book him (if they can afford him) Why does he want to pretend to be something else?


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: GUEST,blogward
Date: 04 Nov 11 - 02:07 PM

'English' cadences in Martyn, Renbourn, Jansch, Donovan and McTell.(Yes i know Scottish in three cases, but it wasn't Jimmy Shand stuff)

Sorry, can't let that pass. If three out of five originated in Scotland then you mean "English in two case, but it wasn't Max Bygraves stuff":)


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 04 Nov 11 - 04:36 PM

Like being an Irish or Scottish song, ever bothered an English traddie. My meaning is clear - its about the spirit that was abroad in the English clubs in that period. That's why those Scottish singers didn't stay in Scotland, and why Christy Moore came to England.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 04 Nov 11 - 04:49 PM

And why are you pretending these people have nothing to do with folk music, rather than being serious artists who have worked all their lives in the medium, Richard? These people deserve the kudos that the folk label would confer.

Why are you so anxious to deny their enormous influence? Why do you think they deserve exclusion.

Bout twenty years ago - I picked up a Guitarist magazine and Roy Harper was in there - flat broke, but spending the thirty grand or so his Dad left him promoting an album that he hoped would lead to some gigs. Since then, according to the article today, his house has been repossessed. Probably at 70 - a life gigging folk clubs would be a bit of a tall order. Particularly giving the kind of high intensity performances that his fans would expect.

I don't know the guy. I only saw him play one time in 1968 - but it was one of the most courageous spirited evenings of music I have ever seen. He's very talented. I really don't get it why he doesn't rate a place on the team.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: GUEST,blogward
Date: 04 Nov 11 - 05:16 PM

Please could someone explain the appeal of dear Roy?


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 04 Nov 11 - 05:33 PM

Anyone who could fit the words

"I've got a brother, one year old
He's got a very zappy, nappy
Squeezes the contents through the cot rails
What a very crappy little chappy"

Into a song deserves MASSIVE respect.

Oh - and getting banned off the Beeb for Watford gap, Watford Gap - Plate of grease and a load of crap.

But it is 'An old cricketer' that does it for me. No! Not that way...

:D tG


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: John P
Date: 04 Nov 11 - 07:06 PM

Guess what? If I went into a jazz club and played Appalachian dulcimer solos all night, I'd probably be told I didn't fit in there. But then, I wouldn't ever consider doing such a thing. Why in world would someone want to play modern music in a place that puts on traditional music shows? And, having been told rightly enough that they weren't appropriate for the club, why would they complain about it?

If a club doesn't want you, go play somewhere else. And please don't try to make it about quality, power, publicity, money, fairness, "denying the importance of", or anything else other than the fact that people who book music get to book whatever they want. If you don't like it, start a club and decide what gets booked there.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 04 Nov 11 - 07:51 PM

Harper has an excellent reputation and has had a much respected career. Why does he want to be called a folkie?


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 12:40 AM

'Why does he want to be called a folkie?'

The one night I saw Harper back in 1968. A friendly lecturer had taken me out to Cambridge for the day, and i asked the lecturer who had brought me if we could go and see Harper play - for I saw him advertised outside an art gallery, where were displayed Jim Dine originals.

Even then. harper was getting hassle. A traddie got up and delivered a bitter diatribe about the vile Bob Dylan who had stolen this beautiful English folksong. And then he went on to slaughter Scarboro Fair. Lugubrious, long and tuneless. by the end of it I was ready to plough a lambs horn right up his jacksie.

As i recall, the place was full of young people, packed - so many that no pub could be expected to have that many seats. We sat on the floor, those that didn't have seats. Many stood at the back. fire regulations ....forget it.

Harper was young, but seemed self assured and worldly - many years wiser than we students. He said, this is a Bob Dylan song, Because he writes songs like this, this room is full of young people tonight - myself included. And he sang a faultless Girl of the North Country.


I think it was Martin Carthy who said, just becauseyou're English doesn't mean you can understand this music. I'm not blaming him and his like, but when the decision was made that it didn't matter that we could lose all the audience that was in that folk club (as long as we preserved 'the tradition'), I think it was a bad one. And no amount of all the kings horses and all the kings men and running university courses to produce little Aly Blains, little Kate Tickells and little Ewan MacColls is going to put it right.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: GUEST,Shimrod
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 05:15 AM

What you appear to be saying, Al, is that Roy Harper (who is, no doubt, a highly talented musician) covets the label 'folkie'. Not only that but he appears to want to wrest the label away from our teeny, weeny little minority of English Folk Music fans. Why can't he write his own label?


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 05:40 AM

I think that is the whole point of this thread, Shimrod. Some are of the opinion that fans of traditional English folk do not deserve their own label. That trad folk, somehow, presents a threat to other forms of music that may or may not be folk. There it all gets terribly confusing.

I know most of us on here are of the opinion that it doesn't matter at all if someone performs non-trad songs at a folk club. But, as the title suggests, there are others who would love to see traditional English music 'put in it's place' by taking it over with singer-songwriters and American Indian chants. They also seem to think that the fans of traditional folk are trying to get other forms of music banned.

Me? What do I know. I like Martin Carthy, Bob Dylan, New Model Army and The Piarces...

DtG

(and Roy Harper of course :-) )


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 06:02 AM

I think what I am saying is that, loads of songwriters and performers like him consider themselves to be English folk music - indeed they have predicated their whole artistic oeuvre on that assumption.

Indeed take a club like Ilkeston in Derbyshire. An open mic set up. Full every week. Maybe three or four traditional singers, who sing at the other trad clubs. But what fills the room are the other contemporary singers - singing Steve Knightley, Bob Dylan, Donovan (still very popular). The same used to be the case in Sutton in Ashfield, and i suppose the majority of the floor singers at HMansfield Folk Club.

So blinkered were the powers that be that the local folk radio used to say Sutton wasn't a proper folk club and wouldn't have a mention of it on folk diary.

In fact if English folk music, and its contemporary cousin had an election - you lot would loose your deposit. In short, whatever your committe said in 1954, the meaning of the term 'folk music', in common English usage, changed in the 1960's.

As Richard says, Harper was relatively successful in his career, however he still lives in exile because the English tax authorities simply won't believe how little money he made. But for dozens of others like Jack Hudson and the late Roger Brooks - people who shared the bill with all the people you value - their work is out in the cold critically.

You're in the position of those critics who called Van Gogh's work 'mere daubs' - one day there will be an awakening. And your place in history will be viewed at the best short sighted, and at the worst villainous. No doubt the critics who poured scorn on Van Gogh thought they were maintaining standards.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 06:15 AM

So blinkered were the powers that be that the local folk radio used to say Sutton wasn't a proper folk club and wouldn't have a mention of it on folk diary.

And there we have the crux of the issue. Because of the actions of a handful of idiots the whole trad folk genre is tainted. Whoever ran that radio show needs to be sacked - if they have not been already. But why say that Genevieve Tudor or Radio Shropshire or Phil Brown on Radio Lancashire are the same? They just aren't!

If I was to say that all Pakistanis were thieves or con-men beacuse the man in the corner shop tried to give me change for a ten when I gave him twenty I would, quite rightly, be shot down in flames. But because a few people have had a bad experience at the hands of a traditional idiot (I like that phrase :-) ) then why tar everyone who likes traditional music with the same brush?

DtG


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: GUEST,Shimrod
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 06:18 AM

May I also suggest that there's a hint that certain professional musicians (like Roy Harper, perhaps?) may be looking for someone to blame for their own lack of commercial success? The fact is that the 'music biz' is a highly competitive and precarious one and there are bound to be casualties, even among the most talented. To pour all the blame on a tiny minority, of largely amateur trad. music fans is ludicrous!

The fact is that I don't feel the least bit guilty about my musical interests - and if I had to choose whether to listen to a talented singer-songwriter or an equally talented performer of trad. material I would probably choose the latter - it's my choice, after all! Nevertheless, if a singer-song writer presented his/her work at a folk venue at which I was present I would give it all the attention and respect that it deserves. I insist that I'm not prejudiced - but I do have preferences.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 06:36 AM

No doubt an entertaining anecdote, Al: you are always a good entertainer. But I don't see any hassle or criticism of Harper in that tale.

Further, there is nothing wrong with a song being long. What is wrong is being long and boring, and they are not synonyms. Some of the contemporary heroes could drone for their country of preference, Dylan being, IMHO, one of the worst offenders, another "poet" who used the song form (I can't call his guitar playing or singing "music") to widen his audience. Part of the art of singing a long song is to form your delivery so as to build the dramatic tension. Both Martin Carthy and Brian Peters can do this. It applies to different forms of music too. It also applies to for example the novel.

There may be crap singers of traditional songs, but there are plenty of crap singers of contemporary songs too (go to any open mic night).




The supposition behind this thread is a cumulation of two errors. First, it assumes that an innovative treatment and delivery of a folk song means that it is no longer a folk song. That is precisely 180 degrees out of phase with the 1954 definition that the OP blames as being the root of so much evil. It seems to coincide with Sweeney's latest view which I think I can summarise is now "if it sounds folky it's folk" - a curious proposition because then his neologisms are what prevent him being folk, rather than any preferences of a mythical "folk police".

Second it assumes that anyone excludes things that are "not folk" from folk clubs or from opportunities of performance to folk audiences. Not only does that largely not happen but also any performer wanting to get rich would be mad to pursue such a narrowing of purchaser base.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 07:23 AM

If only you could see D the G - I'm not saying anything bad about traditional music or musicians. On the contrary many are my good friends, I attend their clubs their estivalss. I enjoy their music, and their company.

What I said was:-

In short, whatever your committe said in 1954, the meaning of the term 'folk music', in common English usage, changed in the 1960's.

And to clarify that - it changed in common usage from being a type of music to an artistic movement - like the Impressionists, or the Pre raphaelites.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Dave Sutherland
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 07:49 AM

If I remember correctly during the period to which Al refers Roy Harper spent most of his time claiming that he wanted to "get off the folk page". Have a glance at the sleeve notes to the album "Back To Reality - Rot Harper 1970 - 1975". Having seen Harper perform an number of times, and I have been a follower of his since the "Sophisticted Beggar days" I would cite his anti - showbiz, nonconformist aproach to his music which while, endearing him to the likes of me, was never going to find him commercial success.
Don't blame the traditional folk clubs for that one.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 07:53 AM

I know you're not, Al. But once again you are making sweeping generalisations - In short, whatever your committe said in 1954

It's not MY committee. I have FA to do with it, yet because I happen to like traditional music, amongst as I have pointed out, many other genres I am tarred as a lifeless, soulless, misery who likes nothing better than spoiling other peoples fun. Far from it. I am more welcoming of any music genres than a lot of people. There are some I do not like - Jazz, Opera and Rap in particular. But I appreciate that is my fault. There is nothing at all wrong with Jazz, Opera and Rap. I just don't understand them.

I would never dream in a million years of suggesting that the music I do like should occupy the space taken by another genre. Why is it that one persons personal crusade against an entire type of music is seen as harmless, yet if her tirades were against a race or religion they would be seen as dangerous.

Please feel free to visit Swinton Folk Club at any time and know that you would be welcomed with open arms. No money I'm afaid but warmth and friendship abound:-)

Here - Try it out !

See you soon.

DtG


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 08:00 AM

Al, I don't suppose that many people could define an amp or a volt either.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: GUEST,glueman
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 08:36 AM

Seems to me a lot of the justification for 'vituperative intolerance' is based on the mischief that folk music is 'under threat'. It may well have been in the 1880s but that battle was lost and we're left with a reconstruction from the scattered shards of a broken pot, a facsimile that has to take it's place with the other displays in the museum.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 08:41 AM

No, that's another construct. It contradicts the essential nature of folk music. There was no "battle" in the 1880s (AFAIK). And the "vituperative intolerance" seems if any to come from those who insist (against all reason) that what they do is "folk music" and that any attempt to give sensible meaning to the expression is to exclude them. From what? A pool of penury? It makes no sense.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 09:36 AM

Richard, consider in the bowels of Christ that you may be wrong.

Look at all the things you lot have held your noses at the mention of. All the virtuosity that was dismissed. All the songwriters with cogent things to say, and fanbases, In fact one folkclub in Nottingham in its last throes only filled up when someone like Clive Gregson, or that chap out of Decameron rallied the troops from their webpages.

The Irish theme bars was probably the only time I made a living playing an acoustic guitar. When discos closed down the Irish Showband business, many of the musicians drifted over here and played in Coutry and western bands that worked the miners welfare circuits - strengthening immeasurably the domestic scene that stalwarts like Tony Goodacre and Brian Golby had nurtured. The folk comedians who predated the new comedy movement. The performance poetry boom, which had its seed in the Liverpool poets of the 1960's, but flowered into the rant poets like Nic Toczek and John Cooper Clark.

All English people, expressing themselves in terms that English people 'got'. People who have brought creative excitement into the folk clubs if they'd been allowed access and welcomed. People reflecting Englands magpie cultural identity.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: GUEST,Shimrod
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 10:03 AM

Al, you're still blaming trad. folkies for problems that you've identified. I can think of no other group of music fans who are so consistently vilified for following their own tastes.

When you were attending Roy Harper's gig in Cambridge, I was living in Peterborough nearby and attending Peterborough Folk Club. Through that club I discovered trad. folk song and the music of Ewan MacColl. To me, at that time, I thought that MacColl was the greatest and most electrifying singer that I had ever heard - and I was particularly struck by his interpretation of traditional songs. If, at that time, you had offered me the choice of attending Harper's gig in Cambridge for free or spending a week's wages to go down to London to hear MacColl sing I would have chosen the latter without any hesitation. When I moved to Manchester, in the early 1970s, I joined a traditionally based club, many of whose members were also MacColl fans - and they made me very welcome. Now, nearly 40 years later, I still love traditional folk song and it's still part of my life.

It may disappoint you to hear that, at no point in all of that time, have I ever woken in a cold sweat, sat bolt upright in bed, and thought to myself: "Oh my God! By following my tastes I'm putting guitar-based singer-song writers out of business!I'd better ditch all that pernicious old traddy nonsense and bring my tastes up to date!"


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 10:24 AM

Of course not Shimrod.

MacColl was a special person to me as well. The first people ever to publish one of my songs were Ewan an Peggy. Isaw him loads of times, and I used to even attend the Grey Cock FC , where I was unwelcome as a floorsinger, when Ewan was the guest. ("Who are your influences ...? Ralph McTell! I'm sorry, we've got to draw the line somewhere!) Used to take my family and friends.

The biggest loser in the game has been English folk music, which threw away an audience for a mistaken set of ideas about folk music.

You know Shimrod the first time I came across the name A.L. Lloyd was as a translator of French Surrealist poems in the Penguin book Poetry of the Forties. And that's Folksong in England is, its a wonderful set of ideas. Like Wilde said, we make ideas acrobats to delight and entertain us.

But the English people are going to go on expressing themselves musically and in song And that is destined to be the true Folksong in England. Whatever we may wish and whatever our ideas are.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 10:45 AM

Once again. sweeping generalisations -

Look at all the things you lot have held your noses at the mention of.

Just who are 'you lot'. If you have an argument with something Richard, or anyone else, has said, please address it personaly. Don't lump whole groups of people together as if they all have th esame views. It's as bad a lumping all music under the term folk...;-)

Cheers

DtG

PS - You may enjoy Roger Davies on our YouTube channel - Very talented singer songwriter. You may also enjoy some of Ged Todd's settings of Arthur Conan Doyles poems - In the traditional idiom but definitely contemporary tunes. I doubt you would enjoy my stuff as it is primarily traditional and I am pretty crap. But in my defense I limit myself to only singing with friends! :-)


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 10:55 AM

Oh, and I just noticed -

The biggest loser in the game has been English folk music, which threw away an audience for a mistaken set of ideas about folk music.

Just who is this 'English Folk Music'? How have they thrown the audience away? What set of ideals do they have? I have never met anyone who claims to be representative of English Folk Music. Even if I did I would dismess them as a nutter.

Can't you see that by claiming a whole group of disparate people, only joined by a liking of similar types of music, are for or against something as a whole, you are falling into the trap that most ists do?

We know very well that the OP starts these things simply because she has a dislike of around 4 or 5 people on Mudcat. Because of that the whole English Folk World is subject to her diatribes and rants. Please don't make the same mistake.

Cheers

DtG

Another PS - When and where are you on nearest to Manchester? I would love to see you live.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 10:57 AM

Sorry - forgot that angle brackets do HTML stuff. Should read "falling into the trap that most (anything)ists do

D


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 01:06 PM

Al - if you go back to the beginning of this thread (I know it's a long way) I said it was not a matter of quality. Plenty of people like stuff that isn't folk. I even like some of it (a bit of a metaller and at other times pub-rocker on the sly). Quite a it of stuff I don't like is folk - there's a whole wodge of traditional (insofar as a country that young can have a tradition -:o) American stuff I don't like and lots of eastern European or far Eastern traditional stuff I don't like too.

They may be very nice zebras. But they aren't horses. Indeed the difference might be more like giraffes and horses.

Why does anyone want to murder the horses, to breed them out of existence?

I mean, I can I think infer Lizzie's reasons - but why does anyone else do it? Indeed I'm puzzled why she might want to stop Snow of Blands playing traditional songs...


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 01:40 PM

I would probably enjoy your music dave more than the others - I love traditional folksong. Not all of it, but quite a lot of it. At the moment, I'm struggling with technical and personal stuff - so i haven't got a gig together. Perhaps i won't get one together again, but I hope I do - eventually.
Snow of Blands, Cuntservatives......off you go again Richard. I really wish you wouldn't.

I remember bitching to Martin Carthy one time that Phil and Paul Downes couldn't get a gig at the folk club in their home town - a nest of college lecturers masquerading as horny handed sons of the soil.

You don't surprise me, he said, that lot are SO narrow minded.

of course Martin couldn't say that, I suppose, cos the club were certainly booking him. Its that cleft stick that performers find themselves in - they aren't really wise to speak their minds.

It was about that time Martin recorded Gilbert O Sullivans Nothing Rhymed. Paul Downes (who worships at the shrine of Carthy -as all guitarists should!) asked him - why that song?

Martin looked him square in the eyes and prodded his chest and said - because its a very very good song!

Thank you for youe interest in my music Dave - if you PM me your address I will send you an album.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: BTNG
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 01:49 PM

" Seems to me a lot of the justification for 'vituperative intolerance' is based on the mischief that folk music is 'under threat'. It may well have been in the 1880s but that battle was lost and we're left with a reconstruction from the scattered shards of a broken pot, a facsimile that has to take it's place with the other displays in the museum."

and then there are the real dinosaurs and the their bones, that are not even worth displaying...you may not like trad. arr. stickyperson ( I have a feeling you would deny, if you could, others the pleasure you obviously do not have, in this music), but there are those of us who do and will always do, so....get over it!


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: GUEST,mudcat
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 06:46 PM

Au contraire, I'm a traddy to the quick, at least when I'm listening to traditional music BTNG. What consenting adults get up to in the privacy of a pub back room is entirely up to them, my point is, and always has been, that the revival form they practice is a genre. Folk music died, or as near as dammit expired, with the coming of the music hall and that after a long series of attacks from other forms. What we call traditional was gathered from too few living sources to tell us anything useful about it, except it had become as exotic and rare as a burbot egg.

What people get grumpy about is the fading spirit of 1968, not 1768, the time when they were young and anything was possible. Folk music is not under attack and when people get that into their heads, the vituperative intolerance might fade with it.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: BTNG
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 06:50 PM

you have your opinion, the folkies have theirs, so it shall ever be.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 07:49 PM

Genre? Clarity might assist.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 07:51 PM

Incidentally folk songs (in the 1954 meaning) were still being collected in many cases from the Romanies and travellers that some here revile, until recently - and maybe still are.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: GUEST,glueman
Date: 05 Nov 11 - 08:18 PM

Nobody alive today has any continuity with the English folk canon. Few did in my father's era and he was born in 1913. There may have been some singers who knew singers, etc, in my grandfather's time (born 1880s) but it's safe to say The People's Music had died out as the people's music by the 1960s when many here first heard the stuff in revival form. By then it was on a menu of genres for modern sensibilities to fly their flag under, trad jazz, blues, folk - choose from the blackboard when you order your drinks.

Now people can believe what they like about folk music but a) they're not continuing anything, they're re-making it anew for their own generation, and b) the thing is certainly not under threat. In fact it's more secure now in hard copy and soft than it has ever been and being sung somewhere every night of the week. It's no business of mine whether traddies allow modern songs in the clubs they run or not, thousands of great tunes have been written in the last 50 years, barely a handful within a traditional style. I've no idea why people insist their compositions fit the revival format but the bile that's spilt over the subject is hugely disproportionate to its importance.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 06 Nov 11 - 01:50 AM

Some good comments here. Better than the four legs good, two legs bad stuff of the 1954 devotees.

Glueman

Like youself, I grew up with people of that earlier period. My Grandparents were born in 1880's and I knew (and sang with) my Grandmother's sister who was born in the 1850's. I knew first generation folksingers and folk dancers inside my fanily, and I discounted them and their music with all the arrogance and silliness of childhood.

I don't think anyone would resent the traddies enjoying their own enclaves, or that anyone has a right to do so. I'm just not sure of the validity of its claim to be the folk music of England. there are more folks than ever - and by and large they ain't singing that stuff, and they do desperately need avenues of expression.

Guest mudcat - very perceptive. I do indeed lament the coming of my old age. I am sad to see all the musical techniques that have been the obsession of my life disappear, dishonoured as some mongrel skill - unworthy of a place in 'the tradition'.

Still I guess times change, and i'll have to put up with it. Somehow I don't feel, it had to be like this. And I resent the petulance and intolerance, and I wish, as human beings, we had managed stuff better.


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Subject: RE: 'Occupy English Folk Music!'
From: Lizzie Cornish 1
Date: 06 Nov 11 - 02:44 AM

Excellently said, Al.


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