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16 messages

Belfast Mill, aka Aragon Mill

01 Feb 98 - 12:16 AM (#20348)
Subject: Belfast Mill, aka Aragon Mill
From: Jack Hickman

Greetings

I'm a member of an Irish band in Kingston, ON. We perform a song which we call Belfast Mill, however, I'm told that a similar song is known in the Blue Grass community as Aragon Mill.

Does anyone know the origin of this song, it's original title, and who composed it.

Thanks

Jack Hickman


01 Feb 98 - 12:28 AM (#20350)
Subject: RE: Belfast Mill, aka Aragon Mill
From: Barry

Si Kahn wrote Aragon Mill, it was later recorded by an Irish group or singer as Belfast Mill & started popping up in Irish pubs. It's a nice song no matter where you're singing it from but it's more powerful coming from a place that's a one-mill or company town that's been shut down & stilled by the closing of its only industry. Similar to the mining towns & company stores that could get away with murder because they were the lifeblood. Lot of good songs in the same vein. Barry


01 Feb 98 - 03:16 AM (#20368)
Subject: RE: Belfast Mill, aka Aragon Mill
From: Joe Offer

Click here for a fascinating thread we had quite some time ago. It covered "Aragon Mill" and a number of other mill songs.
-Joe Offer-


01 Feb 98 - 11:47 AM (#20384)
Subject: RE: Belfast Mill, aka Aragon Mill
From: Bruce O.

Another Si Kahn song of mills, "The Spinning Mills of Home", is sung by Art Thieme on on Folk Legacy C-105. He just contributed a western US version of "Barbara Allen" on another thread.


01 Feb 98 - 04:38 PM (#20408)
Subject: RE: Belfast Mill, aka Aragon Mill
From: alison

hi,

Purely as a matter of interest, Belfast did have a mill which is now shut down. So even though we did adapt the song, it's still accurate enough.

Slainte

Alison


02 Feb 98 - 04:29 PM (#20486)
Subject: RE: Belfast Mill, aka Aragon Mill
From: Tim O'Kane

I believe it was Seamus Kennedy, originally from Belfast and now based in St. Mary's Maryland, who adapted it. It is definitely on one of his albums and he does take a credit for "additional lyrics by."


14 Nov 99 - 10:32 PM (#136143)
Subject: RE: Belfast Mill, aka Aragon Mill
From: Reiver 2

Check out the thread "Historical" Ballads for recent discussion of this song.


14 Nov 99 - 10:39 PM (#136150)
Subject: RE: Belfast Mill, aka Aragon Mill
From: WyoWoman

I have a beautiful recording of that on a tape by the Dry Branch Fire Squad. (Did I get the name of that group right? They're really, really good. And I just assumed because they did it that it was a bluegrass song...)

ww


14 Nov 99 - 11:20 PM (#136182)
Subject: RE: Belfast Mill, aka Aragon Mill
From: Barry Finn

Hi WyoWoman, DBFS have been doing this for some time but Si didn't write it as a BG song, he just wrote a good some that different types made into their own (not with bad results either). To Tim O'K, Seamus Kennedy has also been doing this for a bit too but when he started singing (when he resided in the Boston area) this had already long been out, recorded & sightly adapted by an Irish singer/group can't recall which. Barry


15 Nov 99 - 10:52 PM (#136646)
Subject: RE: Belfast Mill, aka Aragon Mill
From: Richard Wright

Alison

Do you know the name of the Belfast Mill. My grandfather worked at a Belfast Mill and I'm wondering it it was the same one.

Richard


16 Nov 99 - 02:06 AM (#136714)
Subject: RE: Belfast Mill, aka Aragon Mill
From: alison

The Belfast Mill I'm talking about was also known as "The Ropeworks".... if that is any help..... they made rope (surprise, surprise)I'm not sure if it was the same mill where they made Belfast Linen too... but it's fairly likely... there may well have been more than one mill...

slainte

alison


16 Nov 99 - 01:21 PM (#136864)
Subject: RE: Belfast Mill, aka Aragon Mill
From: Philippa

For more information on Belfast mills and associated songs , find Betty Messenger's book. "Picking Up the Linen Threads"


16 Nov 99 - 06:51 PM (#137040)
Subject: RE: Belfast Mill, aka Aragon Mill
From: Reiver 2

I found my source for Belfast Mill, finally, on a recording by The Furies. Check out the thread on Si Kahn, the writer of the original (Aragon Mill. Thanks to all for adding to my knowledge through all these threads.


16 Nov 99 - 08:14 PM (#137077)
Subject: RE: Belfast Mill, aka Aragon Mill
From: Reiver 2

The next song on that recording by the Furies is "Yesterday's Men", with a similar theme -- workers being laid off as the factories are closed down -- and much more powerful even than Belfast/Aragon Mill. It's another song I can never sing without tears coming to my eyes and my voice choking up. If anyone is interested in it I can provide the words, but we should probably start a new thread in that case.


16 Nov 99 - 08:22 PM (#137081)
Subject: RE: Belfast Mill, aka Aragon Mill
From: Reiver 2

Alison - It's my understanding that there were/are many linen mills in the Belfast area. Belfast Linen was famous the world over.

For a hilarious song with a reference to Belfast Linen check out "The Ballad of William Bloat" in the DT data base. I first heard it sung before a live audience by the Clancy Bros. -- it's the only song I've ever heard that ends with three consecutive "punch lines", each getting a bigger laugh from the audience than the one before!


16 Nov 99 - 10:41 PM (#137141)
Subject: RE: Belfast Mill, aka Aragon Mill
From: alison

We learned "William Bloat" at school...

the words for Yesterday's Men are in an earlier thread....

slainte

alison