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What is Happening to our Folk Clubs

Jim Carroll 28 Oct 17 - 01:41 PM
Joe Offer 28 Oct 17 - 01:41 PM
GUEST,The Mudcat Moaner 28 Oct 17 - 01:38 PM
GUEST,Nick Dow 28 Oct 17 - 01:26 PM
Big Al Whittle 28 Oct 17 - 12:53 PM
The Sandman 28 Oct 17 - 11:51 AM
Steve Shaw 28 Oct 17 - 09:16 AM
Jim Carroll 28 Oct 17 - 08:19 AM
Rob Naylor 28 Oct 17 - 08:01 AM
Vic Smith 28 Oct 17 - 07:55 AM
Jim Carroll 28 Oct 17 - 07:28 AM
Backwoodsman 28 Oct 17 - 07:21 AM
Jim Carroll 28 Oct 17 - 06:43 AM
Backwoodsman 28 Oct 17 - 06:41 AM
Backwoodsman 28 Oct 17 - 06:39 AM
Jim Carroll 28 Oct 17 - 06:38 AM
Steve Shaw 28 Oct 17 - 06:38 AM
Vic Smith 28 Oct 17 - 06:36 AM
Steve Shaw 28 Oct 17 - 06:21 AM
TheSnail 28 Oct 17 - 06:14 AM
Steve Shaw 28 Oct 17 - 06:07 AM
Jim Carroll 28 Oct 17 - 05:57 AM
Backwoodsman 28 Oct 17 - 05:53 AM
Backwoodsman 28 Oct 17 - 05:51 AM
Big Al Whittle 28 Oct 17 - 05:35 AM
GUEST,Peter Laban 28 Oct 17 - 05:17 AM
TheSnail 28 Oct 17 - 05:12 AM
Jim Carroll 28 Oct 17 - 04:44 AM
Jim Carroll 28 Oct 17 - 04:37 AM
Johnny J 28 Oct 17 - 04:28 AM
RTim 27 Oct 17 - 09:13 PM
Big Al Whittle 27 Oct 17 - 09:07 PM
Steve Shaw 27 Oct 17 - 09:03 PM
RTim 27 Oct 17 - 08:30 PM
Steve Shaw 27 Oct 17 - 08:12 PM
Steve Shaw 27 Oct 17 - 08:08 PM
RTim 27 Oct 17 - 07:25 PM
Jack Campin 27 Oct 17 - 07:14 PM
TheSnail 27 Oct 17 - 05:05 PM
Raggytash 27 Oct 17 - 04:46 PM
Big Al Whittle 27 Oct 17 - 04:24 PM
The Sandman 27 Oct 17 - 04:07 PM
Raggytash 27 Oct 17 - 03:30 PM
RTim 27 Oct 17 - 02:51 PM
Jim Carroll 27 Oct 17 - 02:21 PM
TheSnail 27 Oct 17 - 01:51 PM
Jim Carroll 27 Oct 17 - 01:36 PM
Backwoodsman 27 Oct 17 - 01:34 PM
Backwoodsman 27 Oct 17 - 01:08 PM
GUEST 27 Oct 17 - 12:48 PM
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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 01:41 PM

"Screaming Lord Carroll"
Can wes stop this Nick - it really is beneath you?
"They were writers of extraordinary ability."
I usually put this in quotation marks or with a question mark Al
Of course they we, but that's how they/we were regarded and still are to a great extent
That's why the songs are more important than just 'entertainment', but they have to be that too
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Joe Offer
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 01:41 PM

I've received a request to close the thread. Can't say I'm ready to close it yet, but there has been some infighting that tends to stall the discussion and make it go circular. If that keeps up, I'll have to call an end to it.
Please keep the petty squabbles out of this thread.
Thanks.
-Joe-


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: GUEST,The Mudcat Moaner
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 01:38 PM

Wow over 600 posts, and still the guardians of folk argue among themselves, keep it up lads and we could get to 1000 at this rate!!


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: GUEST,Nick Dow
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 01:26 PM

Just to clear up the typo problem. If sometimes you type your reply, on a separate system like 'word' so that you might be able to make sure you are making your points clearly and lucidly at you leisure (God help us all!) then copy and paste in, the system here gets unapproachable sulky and self righteous and spreads a lot of horrible question marks all over your printed reply instead of commas and full stops.
Surprisingly and tempting as it seems to fall into the obvious comparison this is nothing to do with Screaming Lord Carroll. Just a glitch in the system. You really don't know how much I wish to carry on with unwarranted comparisons but I'll stop now and disappear off to my gig.


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 12:53 PM

well....

first off i have asked Raggytash to behave better, so its not just you i have made this simple request to.

secondly i haven't responded to your kind gift of music, because i could see they were works of great substance and as such worthy of many careful listenings.

thirdly whatever the writers of Arthur MacBride, Thorneymoor Woods, Just as the tide was flowing, Brigg Fair or The Cornish Nightingale were. I can assure you they were not ordinary people. They were writers of extraordinary ability.


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: The Sandman
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 11:51 AM

Nearly all the professional and semi professional musicians who play in folk clubs spend hours practising and take pride in trying to do a good performance.
at the present moment there is an over supply of performers for amount of gigs available, particularly male guitarists, if young people want guest booking folk clubs to continue, they need to start organising festivals and clubs.


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 09:16 AM

If you nitpick about someone's spelling or punctuation, you leave yourself wide open. So, Vic, who are YOU blaming for ending your post with a comma?

Neither you nor Jim deserve picking up for spelling, grammar and typos. If I get picked up, I often succumb to the temptation to go for the jugular of the nitpicker, which is generally very easy. Jim types fast and types a lot. If you can understand what he's saying, just leave it. Right?


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 08:19 AM

"I can only hope that you give more concern to the views others,"
Limerick World musc Centre at the University is heavily committed to Irish Traditional Music proper without needing to debate the issue
As far as my typing is concerned, I'm afraid I have to continue to blame my keyboard
I came to typing quite late in life and have leaned to two-finger quite fast
I have an old keyboard which allows me the facility to wind back the position of the cursor on sound files when I am transcribing
I am sure there are newer models available which do the same job, but so far I have been unable to find one which meets my needs
Sorry for that
Thanks for the explanation on my behalf Rob, but no - it was this ****** keyboard
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Rob Naylor
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 08:01 AM

Vic: I think he's hybridising "Limerick" and "Luimneach" (Irish name of the place) :-)


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Vic Smith
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 07:55 AM

Apology accepted - but Jim, you write at 27 Oct 17 - 12:45 PM and elsewhere about assisting and presenting material at Ireland's top seats of learning. I can only hope that you give more concern to the views others, less rigidity, more open-mindedness, greater care in quoting others, more attention to detail in what you write than you have shown here. I mean where exactly is Luimerick University? You cannot go on blaming your keyboard,


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 07:28 AM

"Would I get a reasoned response? "
My apologies Vic - it was a confusion on my part
The statement was from Dave and I thought I was responding his denial whan I posted it
26 Oct 17 - 03:33 AM
A genuine mistake in the melee - I have found it a little difficult to keep up at times
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 07:21 AM

No Jim, not 'he hit me first'. I'm happy to admit my faults, I've said things I now regret. But you obviously aren't going to admit yours. But no matter - your non-stop aggression, abuse, and insults are here for everyone to see. Only a charlatan or an imbecile would continue in complete denial.

I'll make up my own mind which of those you are.


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 06:43 AM

"He hit me first sir"
Grow up baccy - you are as offensive as anybody here and your contribution has been negligible and has sunk to the level of accusations of mental instability
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 06:41 AM

That was to Steve, BTW, in response to the post of 06:21 AM.


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 06:39 AM

I think a lot of the outrage - certainly my own feelings - is because Jim has been aggressive and insulting throughout the thread, yet tries to play the victim and claim complete innocence. Absolute hypocrisy.

Some of the 'attitude' here is apppalling - I completely agree with that - but, as the old saying goes, "It takes two to tango", and Jim has been as abusive and insulting as almost anyone else. It's his utter refusal to acknowledge his part in the nastiness, even though a fair number of examples have been quoted back at him, that's getting up my nose and, I suspect the noses of many others.


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 06:38 AM

I have always assumed that Williams was speaking ironically - I was referring to the article as an analysis of the conference itself anyway, not the individual, often contradictory contributions.
It presented, as far as I can judge, a fair summation of the proceedings and the problems raised
I ma grateful for both Peter's and Steve's common sense interventions, not because they support my case, but because they help remove the sour taste from my mouth.
Peter if a neighbor who I like to regard a friend, though I see far too little of him and hear his wonderful pping far less
Having heard him play, you realise how much he and his fellow musicians put in to achieving the level they have
I get tired of being told bp people not unsimilar to those here, that the same is not necessary for folk singing and "we are only here to enjoy ourselves"
This is Peter with another friend, the late Kitty Hayes, who can be heard singing on our website
EASY, AIN'T IT?
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 06:38 AM

Quite right, Johnny J. There was a rumpus on The Session about a bloke who appointed himself the expert on all things traditional Irish. Strenuous efforts were made to get evidence that he could actually play much of anything at all. The evidence was never forthcoming though one or two samples of some poor playing were dug up eventually. Repeated requests on the forum for him to prove himself were clamped down on heavily and repeat offenders were suspended. Yer man in Edinburgh had plenty of witnesses to his accomplished playing. I've come round to thinking that pressurising someone to prove their musical talent is improper and inappropriate behaviour on a discussion forum. It will not end well.


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Vic Smith
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 06:36 AM

And still it goes on.
And still the contributors have not learned their lesson.
And still we are allowing ourselves to be led into engaging with displays of morbid obsession and dishonesty.
Now, I admit that it is difficult not to rise to the bait of false accusation and provocation. For example, I could object to the post of 27 Oct 17 - 12:45 PM that I did not make the statements (emphasised in red) which, plainly, I did not..... but what would be the point? Would I get a reasoned response?

The way it is going, this thread is likely to be closed down very soon, but wouldn't it be better if we could show restraint, self-regulate and not respond to posts that are designed to annoy?

There was one good point about the post that I have mentioned -
Why are you trolling Vic?
I must admit, I laughed out loud at that one. And I must apologise for "going over to the dark side"!


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 06:21 AM

Jim does not need defending by me, John, especially on a topic where angels fearing to tread have a bloody sight more sense than me. But Jim apologises when he gets things wrong more than everyone else here put together. On the matter of folk song it's my opinion that he's quite likely to be right most of the time. Certainly well worth listening to. The faux-outrage directed at him in this thread looks to me like a microcosm of everything that's wrong with the English "folk scene." Plenty of bees in plenty of bonnets.


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: TheSnail
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 06:14 AM

How many of you people have addressed my point about folk music being the voice of ordinary people ? Jim Carroll

only that which has the germs of great art must be let loose on the simple-minded public whom we invite to sample our wares. Ralph Vaughan Williams

I have no problem wit anything in the article, Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 06:07 AM

"can i just point out Steve the title of this thread.

it isn't about what Jim thinks about folk music - its about what is happening in our folk clubs."

Sure you can point it out. And can I just point out that the bulk of my lengthy post was about what has happened during my very limited experience of folk clubs, right on topic, I'd say. A small amount of it was intended as a lament for the bickering from people whose knowledge of just a few of the hundreds of folk clubs in this country, whilst slightly better than mine, falls way short of making them folkie gurus. You might get just a bit closer to earning that (quite likely unwanted) accolade if you've spent decades working with traditional singers and collecting and archiving folk song. I think that deserves a little more respect than has occasionally been shown in this thread. Humbly yours, as ever. And stop feeling so threatened, Snail. This is opinions, not an expose on the truth of evolution (some gremlin will not let me use the required accent).


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 05:57 AM

"Hey Jim! You've got Steve Shaw on your side now. What more could you ask?"
That's all right Bryan - you've got yourself
"Sides" is about packs, not intelligent arguments
"be honest Jim - you push just as much as you get shoved."
And you be honest Al - you are one of the few who have graciously accepted my offer and have totally failed to comment on any of the contents, indicating exactly the disinterest in folk music that I am referring to
Ten years ago I would have been mortified to find myself raising my head above the parapet as I have here
I have begun to realise that, if the music I am arguing for to survive you need to give as good as you get
Addres you remarks on nastiness to all concerned if you are genuine in your co=ncerns
Then, apart from the mudslinging, go and look at the level of openly expressed hate that is taking place here - none from me.
How many of you people have addressed my point about folk music being the voice of ordinary people ?
I'll tell you how many - not one of you - not even to deny it.
For me, it's not just enjoying the songs, which I do immensely - it's about what those songs represent for us as human beings
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 05:53 AM

Bradley? Bloody predictive text! BRAMLEY! 😎


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 05:51 AM

Ah but, ah but, ah but...Jim is always 'right', Al, and everyone else is a thick cunt who couldn't find his own arse. We know that's true because Jim is always 'right', and he knows everything about folk-clubs, despite not having set foot in one for years.

Except when he's wrong.

On a happier note - went to see 'The Mile Roses' (Edwina Hayes, Kate Bradley, Simon Howarth) last night at Roots Music Club in Doncaster. An excellent evening of great singing and musicianship, and finely crafted songs and arrangements. Didn't hear one single comment about 'definitions', but everyone seemed very happy.


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 05:35 AM

i don't remember much about my physics lessons - but i do recall Newton saying something about every action having an equal and opposite reaction.

be honest Jim - you push just as much as you get shoved. if you want to stop the venom coming your way, stop spitting it out. its what these guys have done with their lives just as much as you did. you may not reckon much to their efforts as folksingers and club organisers, but they did it to the best of their own lights - and as such its worthy of respect, not condemnation.

it was a creative effort. ....if they'd decided to become serial killers and child molesters, perhaps your tone would be considered measured and commensurate.

being nice doesn't ensure you will be free from criticism - as you will gather from the number of times i have run away from character slurs on mudcat. i know its horrid to be accused unfairly, and i know you are a decent man who is trying to protect what you see as your contribution.

believe me, i understand. unlike Nick i can count the number of folk club bookings i have been offered on one hand - despite what i consider to be a life of artistic integrity. i have had to work as a jobbing musician outside the 'folk' world. perhaps thats why i don't expect or get angry any more at 'the folk scene'.

i understand rejection of your point of view. believe me. but nastiness doesn't do any good.


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: GUEST,Peter Laban
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 05:17 AM

Steve @ 27 Oct 17 - 08:08 PM : full thumbs up from me.

And yes I have heard Jim sing on many occasions and would not be able to find fault with.

You guys do realise all this bickering and pettiness on display is reason enough for people like myself never to want set foot inside a folkclub ever, don't you?


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: TheSnail
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 05:12 AM

Hey Jim! You've got Steve Shaw on your side now. What more could you ask?


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 04:44 AM

" have sunk to the level displayed here "
Sould read - have not sunk to the level, of course
Another typo for Jack to hurl
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 04:37 AM

"What most people sing in folk clubs - are songs??"
Then why not just call them song clubs and stop misrepresenting what you do?
"On a related front - While I had the mind and body to do it - for most of my life I was a Morris Dancer."
Did your morris side go in for ballet or hip-hop - if not, why not?
"I am astounded by your arrogance Mr Carroll."
Mr Carroll now Raggy - next stop "Jom" - I have argued my case - you have made it personal - I expected better
"You are an utterly insufferable boring, tedious, belligerent, bragging, bigotted old man."
Ageism again - pity I'm not black, you could have added "uppity nigger"
The rest of your posting is a diatribe of personal hate and abuse
Bryan
Most of those responses were aimed at you and all were latecomers to this thread when the abuse was flying thick and fast from all sides
You have been personally abusive to me from the early days - you have been permamently so here - you sneer, you insult and you bully and bluster
Nothing I have said here comes anywhere near to this Bog Brother Hate-fest from people who really should no better
It is a fine explanation why a serious discussion of folk song has never been an option on this forum
For those of you old enough to remember 1984
"Trying to edit your text for readability is a simple matter of consideration for other people:
Somewhat pathetic Jack - others here understand enough of what I have said to scream their hate at the message
Your elitist argument excludes people from this forum every bit as much as people claim my arguments exclude people from folk song
On the other hand, the last refuge of a scoundrel is to claim they don't understand
"I genuinely would like to hear Jim Carroll sing - are there any examples??"
No there aren't and my ability as a singer has no relevence here - I'm sure if I didn't sing what you people regard as folk song it would be yet another stone to throw at an argument you have studiously refused to address and swamped with almost palpable hate
I started as a singer and was persuaded that the songs I loved were worth the effort of work before they were put before an audience - not particularly high, just accessible enough to be emjoyed
Our work with older singers took up so much time that I fel out of practice so I confined my singing to the people who realised my shortcomings as much as I did
I found recently I still remember my 300-+ repertoire (two thirds traditional - one third contemporary, and having having found a limited venue to sing, have worked up my favourites
I find I enjoy singing more than I ever did, thanks to the people we have met and recorded down the years and, surprisingly, people here seem to enjoy listening to my songs
We have a regular singing/music session that fills up with mainly elderly farmers, mostly who come for the music
A high point happened last year when I was singing MacColl's Tenant Farmer (one of the best compositions of Britain's finest songwriter, who still attracts the type of hate displayed here nearly thirty years after his death).
When I reached the verse where the Farmer and his family are evicted for not paying the bank, an elderly farmer standing next to me roared in my ear "THE BASTARDS"
I would rather have had that than a thousand standing ovations.
As I said, no I don't sing as often as I would like to - I respect the songs too much to not put the work in - unlile the clubs where anything goes anyhow and you can't hear the words for the rattle of crib sheets or see the singer for the glare of mobile phones used to read the words.
You want me on line Tim 'YR 'TIS AGAIN
I don't go in for self promotion - I'm happy to let our singers tell others what we are about
Hopefully there'll be much more next year - maybe we can get them to squeeze Walter Pardon in somewhere as he has found no place in his native England
I did my best to answer the OP's question - as it happens, you people have done that far better than I possibly could
The clubs have fallen into the hands of people who don't know what folk music is, and don't like what little they do know
When you were offered examples of the best of Bitish and International folk song proper, you scattered like frightened sheep before a rottweiler - that is proof positive of the hands our music has fallen into
I only hope that the research side of things have sunk to the level displayed here where folk song is what happens in such clubs
I will continue to respond with my opinions as long as I see ft or until somebody closes this thread - the importance of our music is far important than this display of hate and bad manners


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Johnny J
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 04:28 AM

Steve says "I genuinely would like to hear Jim Carroll sing - are there any examples??"

If you posted a thing like like that on The Session website, Jeremy would kick you off. Quite right too. "

I'm not sure about that. I remember someone asked that about a certain Edinburgh based musician's fiddling playing. ;-))   Examples were found and he is actually very good.

Of course, Jeremy wouldn't have put up with the nonsense here and in many other threads. they would have been closed by now. Quite right too.


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: RTim
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 09:13 PM

Steve....Jim has asked every one to prove themselves in this thread.

Yes - he has done some great collecting - However, it seems a perfectly reasonable thing to ask about his performances. This thread is about performance - in a club - face to face with your audience. He says the scene is bad..on very little evidence...the proof of the pudding......you can listen to me anytime, why not him?

Fair is fair...........

Tim Radford


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 09:07 PM

can i just point out Steve the title of this thread.

it isn't about what Jim thinks about folk music - its about what is happening in our folk clubs.
Jim thinks we have sunk to level of decadence from the ideals of the Critics Group and Ewan MacColl in his magnificence.
I don't. I think they serve the needs of our society and as such give an avenue of expression which most countries could only dream of, and is a great embodiment of our political and artistic freedom.

if you want hamper and restrict the civil freedoms of English citizens - join the club. The tory party would love to dictate that you only sing ballads of the 18th century. in many countries you would be risking death to organise an evening of free expression. it may seem despicable rubbish to Jim and you. i admit at times its trivial and frequently musically awful - but its an important freedom.


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 09:03 PM

Nope. This is a discussion forum and you do not get to ask anyone to prove themselves by putting up their stuff. Talk about a slippery slope. I don't ask you to prove your credentials in sound and you don't get to ask me to my credentials in sound. If you really can't see how negative that is, well too bad.   Do your googling.


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: RTim
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 08:30 PM

"If you posted a thing like like that on The Session website, Jeremy would kick you off. Quite right too."

Why??? Isn't it a genuine question?? Who is Jeremy and why does he wield that power?
I - again - Genuinely would like to know why..........we are not talking about National security here - It's Folk Music.......


Tim Radford


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 08:12 PM

"I genuinely would like to hear Jim Carroll sing - are there any examples??"

If you posted a thing like like that on The Session website, Jeremy would kick you off. Quite right too.


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 08:08 PM

Right.


First off, I'm not qualified. I haven't set foot in a folk club for twenty years. However...

Without the Tree Inn Folk club I wouldn't be 'ere. John and Cheryl Maughan ran that club magnificently. They had a guest every other week, and what guests. I won't regale you with a list of names (or maybe I will), but it's hard to think of any of the great and good of the time, the early to mid-90s, that they didn't manage to book. In that intimate environment (ready for a bit of name-dropping?) I bantered with Martin Carthy, Roy Bailey, Chris Wood, Andy Cutting, all the guys in Four Men And A Dog, Ron Kavana, Davy Steele, Chris Parkinson, Brian Peters (Hi Brian!), Marilyn Middleton-Pollock, Andy Irvine, Liam O'Flynn, Sid Kipper, Show Of Hands, Pauline Cato, Ian Carr, Kate Rusby, Karen Tweed, Tom McConville...stop me somebody...dammit, John got Tom Paxton when I was away on holiday...On every occasion I got to do a "floor spot" (bloody ghastly affected expression...) or two, either on my own or with my kids or with anyone who could strum along to a bloke playing Irish tunes on the diatonic harmonica. On non-guest nights I got to play a bit more. That club was one of the best things that ever happened to me. Its warm embrace gave me the courage to get out there and strut me stuff in public.

But the singers always got priority. The average song was three times the length of my average set of two or three tunes. Often even longer than that. Now you are a punter in a pub in which you are buying beer. You have to keep quiet while the singers are singing. Some of the "floor spot" songs lasted eight or ten minutes. And you'd probably heard them eight or ten times before if you'd been a regular. These guys were not superstars. We egged them on, we clapped them, we smiled at them. But I'll tell you summat. The majority of them were shite. Tragically, a lot of the shite ones thought they were actually really good. Mrs Steve and I never really got that. If you were a shite harmonica player, at least you were done and dusted in three or four minutes, but if you were a shite singer strumming shitely on your cheap, shite guitar doing the same shite song wot you wrote earlier or wot you were murdering from a "folk source," and then you got a second shout, you could be wailing on for fifteen or twenty minutes.

I don't know what folk clubs are like these days. We transmogrified ourselves into a session that lasted twenty years, free beer for all involved. The amount of fun we had was multiplied by twenty times and we actually got people to come to the pub in droves on our nights. The real pub, not a dingy back room with an atmosphere like a chapel of rest until we managed to rescue it if there were enough of us.

We heard it all, Beatles songs, self-penned songs, Show Of Hands copy songs, Pogues aongs, you name it. Also, some real traditional folk songs. Thing is, if they were good they were good. But we knew what we were getting, we knew it was often not traditional but it was the best we could get. But at least we knew.

You blokes are not listening to Jim. You may be running, or singing in, your own folk club, or your club and the one in the next town as well, or whatever. Thing is, that does not qualify you in any way as a folk guru. My extensive experience with artists that enables me to name-drop does not make me a folk guru. Jim has been studiously collecting and archiving folk song for decades. You have not. He has mixed it with many of the truly traditional singers of old, including travelling people. You have not. He was a close intimate of Ewan MacColl for Christ's sake. When it comes to folk music and the folk music tradition I am the ultimate thickie (though I could quite likely lose most of you on traditional Irish tunes). But neither you nor I can hold a candle to Jim. He has his ways of putting things. Actually, I like his ways of putting things. He will always address what is put to him and he is full of passion for a subject that has been the love of his life. He's a right bugger at times. I could wring his bloody neck below the line on many an occasion. But when it comes to folk song I know that he knows a damn sight more than I do and from what I've seen here he knows a damn sight more than you do. Jim don't need me to appeal to you to cut him slack. Jim can cut his own slack. Just shut up and listen and leave you rather parochial egos at the door!

(Christ, Shaw, you don't half know how to lose friends...)


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: RTim
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 07:25 PM

I genuinely would like to hear Jim Carroll sing - are there any examples??
The problem finding anything online is - there seems to be there is an American musician with the same name.........There was a Tim Radford singer in Canada, but he is no longer with us; but it is possible to hear me online - were as Jim - nothing????..... does anyone have anything - Jim ???


Tim Radford


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Jack Campin
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 07:14 PM

Maybe, but you're a mad old git who knows how to edit and what the return key is for.
Yeah Jack - quite agree
Maybe we should confine these discussions to the educated and computer literate and keep us oiks out


Trying to edit your text for readability is a simple matter of consideration for other people: getting your message received with as little strain on the reader as possible.

And there is very little to it. You just need to care.

You can see how other people do it - in any thread some messages will take less effort than others. (Yours will almost always be the least readable, which is why I rarely read any of them all the way through and ignore most of them entirely; my vision is not that great, and muddle hurts).

All you need to do is look, and see what kind of writing and layout features make the difference.

For that matter, you don't even need to look - I've seen many posts from blind members of web forums that made better use of whitespace than you do. They just took the trouble to understand how their messages would come over. Which usually meant asking somebody and listening to the answers.

If you were singing in the way you write, you'd be facing away from the audience and droning in a monotone at auctioneer speed with a mouthful of burger.


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: TheSnail
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 05:05 PM

"I have insulted nobody Nick"
Jim Carroll

THis is the type of behaviour that turns these discussions into slanging matches..... I suggest you go to the dry cleaners and get your cloth ears sorted out

It might be nowadays in an English club scene that couldn't find it's folk arse with both hands

You are a self obsessed pratt

No you didn't Bryan - you thought you might score a few points

The nonsense lies in your argument that to challenge something that is apparently wrong is to insult those involved Bryan

Doesn't make too much difference to the fact that your boorish bad manners makes you a bullying lout though   

Grow up - it's a long way from the schoolyard

At one toime the clubs were part of this passing on of songs and information and I was part of that scene - that's why I bother
Now, apparently, it's been taken over by a bunch who neither understand or particularly like the music that put them together in the first place

What a sad, sorry bunch you really are - no definition, no objective for your clubs - reduced to name calling - no wonder the club scene is a mess

You people have now reduced this to childish name calling

I've made my offer - like the true heroes you all are, you've all scrambled to take advantage of it
It is nice to talk to people with open minds - not

No club needs a workable definition - it needs a committee theat lives up to its promise of folk songs -- not at the exclusion of anything else but as a rule of thumb - if you are anything to go by, obviously not yours

You obviuouslky don't give a toss for the importance of folk song, I don't get the imprssion that you even like it

your minds are tighter closed than ducks arses - and you call me intransigent!!!!

You need to know what folk song sounds like, which probably excludes you
Such a decision requires an understanding of and commitment to folk song
If MacColl, Rossleson, Pickford, Bogle, Jack Warshaw et al can work it out I'm sure you can find someone to work it out for you Bryan

If the club scene is populated by people like you we may as well all pack it in and wait for the next Beyonce hit
The flk scene was created to allow us to escape from the arrogant oppression of the pop conveyor belt - people with your attitude place us right back on the assembly line

I saw it and consider it irrelevant Bryan - the world does not start and end in Sussex

My unpleasant comments were made in anger, your ongoing nastiness seems a built in part of your character - you seem incapable of addressing any comment I make, reasonably or otherwise, without snide and abuse - that has been your attitude of several years, yet, as now, you are up on your chair screaming "insult" when your own behaviour is thrown back at you.
I sincerely apologise for sinking to your level - it's one of my weaknesses.

And as I pointed out - Sussex isn't the centre of the Universe (and then went on to comment on your previous suggestion of our all jumping on the train and going down to your club)

You really are the nsty piece of work I have been warned against, aren't you
I had no assumptions of what ahhens oat your club and have vnever commented on such matters
I have never been and, if your behaviour is reciprocated in others, nor would I want to.
I do listen to what people say and respond to it which is more than you or others do

There are, I believe, true lovers of folk song to salvage something from the rubble created by the Masonic lodges that call themselves folk clubs - if I didn't believe that, I really wouldn't bother.

I have never said anything different Nick - what concerns me is the ignorance and indifference dominates today's revival

Have any of you people done anything remotely like THIS or do you just sit singing to each other in your little gentlemen's private clubs
Once more - how dare you - what are you people on?

Dave apparently wants me to lay out my wares as if I was selling frocks

Patronising lip service Raggy - we did what we did to share what we got not to win compliments - clear?

Why are you trolling Vic?
You have taken no part in this to any extent

I do like spending time with adults!!
If I had nothing to say, none of you would have bothered responding to what I have posted - instead, you gang up like a pack of rats
A sad case of hitting a raw nerve, I think

"I have insulted nobody Nick"
Glass houses and stones Bryan
Jim Carroll


I really have got better things to do with my time.


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Raggytash
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 04:46 PM

I know Al, I did offer an apology to all the good people involved in folk music, a music I have been aware off all my life. That apology was heartfelt.

I know I should not have reacted as I did but there comes a point when I am sick to death of Jim's "I know everything" routine.

I stand by my statement that attitudes like his have put more people off folk music than they have ever drawn in though.

In almost 50 years old being involved in folk club as audience, then performer, then organiser I have met his ilk on many, many occasions, they are a pain in the arse.

You can quote me on that one.


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 04:24 PM

not a nice thing to say Raggytash.

its bleeding obvious that my fathers house has many more mansions than Jim or the gang of 1954 imagined when it comes to folk music. the people have voted with their feet. they organise theor folk clubs the way they want them.

the English folk club is the envy of many foreigners. they love the fact that we can walk in off the street and publish our songs, or perform with great freedom. its a great movement, that is constantly developing. Mac Coll's generation deserve a lot of the credit for starting it, but the genie was out of the bottle - a great artistic movement could never be tied down to one man or even one coterie's vision.

the basis of us surviving is decent behaviour and courtesy - whatever the provocation.


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: The Sandman
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 04:07 PM

I think foLk music gets a bad press in England, Be cause comedians like morecambe and wise kenneth williams the two ronnies take the mickey out of it and perpetrate the nonny nony myth, they have had access to millions of viewers in the past to indulge in a campaign that has made the noony nonny picture firm in peoples minds, in ireland it has in the past been part of a young countries campaign to establish a folk culture, kind of intertwined with nationalism at times and the historical struggle against british rule


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Raggytash
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 03:30 PM

I am astounded by your arrogance Mr Carroll. Everyone single poster here has acknowledged the work you have done over a prolonged period of time. Every single poster understands that work such as this has been vital in preserving the "folk tradition".

How do you respond ............... "Patronising lip service Raggy - we did what we did to share what we got not to win compliments - clear?"

You are an utterly unsufferable boring, tedious, belligerent, bragging, bigotted old man.

During the course of my involvement in folk music (almost 60 years) I have often met with people who said I don't like folk music. I invariably asked them why, without exception they replied "it's all hey noni no and diddly diddly"

That my "friend" is down in large part to stupid old bastards like you.

I will go further, It is because of people like you that folk music has such a bad press and such a limited appeal.

You say you love the music but you crucify it with your every word.

Folk music would be better without you.


(My apologys to the rest of you good people. We've all beaten around the bush, we've all tried to be diplomatic and we've all tried to acknowledge Jim's work over the years, all to no avail)

I for one am thoroughly pissed off with this arrogant old twat!


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: RTim
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 02:51 PM

I am sorry if this is long - but I just wanted to lay out my thoughts and post them hear - Thank You......
What most people sing in folk clubs - are songs??songs from many diverse sources, and many sing them because they have good voices and others enjoy listening to them. They generally also choose them because they like them or they tell a great story or they are personally connected or have some local significance.

They probably don?t sing them as part of an illustration of their political will or Agrarian or Industrial background. Yes - there maybe one or two who do this, but they are in the minority, and they write their own songs and are known for them.
Similarly, there are those who don?t have a good voice, like some of the old guys who have been collected from in the past. I once heard someone say, who deeply involved in folk music - that they liked bad singers because they wanted to hear what they did with a song to make it work.
Some others don?t have the patience to listen to this - they want to be entertained by slick and practiced professionals. However, someone who is interested in this music, has to start somewhere - and I can tell you, singing at home in from of the mirror is a lot easier than in front of an audience!!
Singing in font of others - particularly peers - is a very daunting task, not one to be taken lightly.

On a related front - While I had the mind and body to do it - for most of my life I was a Morris Dancer. I came to it first as a 9 year old at school - and at first I didn?t think much of it - I wasn?t allowed to dance with the girls, and I didn?t live in an area where it had any real significance.
Later, some 12 or so years later, when I became interested in Folk Song - some of my friends at a local club wanted to start a team - so I said - Yes - I have done that. After a couple of years it took over my life. As a Socialist - I loved the fact that when you danced in a team of 6, you were not 6 individuals, but a team of one!
To me this was an important lesson in my development as a person. It affected me to such a extent that when I need a job, it took one in the middle of the Morris Dance world centre - Oxfordshire.
Soon I was dancing where so many had danced in history, and I even got involved helping to revive the dances in villages where they originated.
I felt invigorated and in my element, particularly dancing in our village and doing the old village dances. That is the real voice of the community, song comes close - but doing it with others of a like mind is magical.

Now I can no longer dance - I spend time researching and singing songs - the ones I like or that may have a particular relevance to me - nobody else - just me. I don?t expect anyone to do things the way I do, or tell others they can?t do it the way they want to. I am still a Socialist???and I will continue to sing my songs for as long as I have wit and breath so to do.
Folk Clubs are the only real outlet for people like me, and I am sure I am not alone.

Tim Radford


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 02:21 PM

"I have insulted nobody Nick"
Glass houses and stones Bryan
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: TheSnail
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 01:51 PM

I have insulted nobody Nick
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 01:36 PM

More personal insults Baccy- and still no intelligent response
I do like spending time with adults!!
If I had nothing to say, none of you would have bothered responding to what I have posted - instead, you gang up like a pack of rats
A sad case of hitting a raw nerve, I think
"Do you think we're any the wiser ?"
A statement which suggests previous wisdom - not much sign of it here
Just boorish bad manners
No-body can be this stubborn and insulting for real can they?
I have insulted nobody Nick - on the contrary - I am now being bombarded with personal insults by people who really should know better
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 01:34 PM

? = a lower-case 'e' with an acute accent.


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 01:08 PM

My mother was a paranoid schizophrenic. I looked after her for several years before her death - it was the most difficult, frustrating, and sometimes maddening, time of my life. I'm getting a strong feeling of d?ja-vu.


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Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
From: GUEST
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 12:48 PM

To th OP - "over 500 posts...." Do you think we're any the wiser ?


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