Archivi tag: Dubliners

Freedom Come All Ye & Battle of the Somme

Leggi in italiano

Freedom Come-All-Ye is a song written by Hamish Henderson (1919-2002) in 1960 for the Peace March in Holy Loch, near Glasgow, it is a song against the war, a cry for freedom against slavery and against the oppression of the working class and ethnic minorities, in the name of social justice. The song is in scots, while the melody is a retreat march for bagpipes from the First World War, arranged by John MacLellan (1875-1949) who titled it “The Bloody Fields of Flanders”; Henderson first heard played on the Anzio beachhead in 1944 (Second World War).The melody however is an old Perthshire aria already known with the title of “Busk Bush Bonnie Lassie

Dick Gaughan

Lorraine McIntosh live –
Luke Kelly

 


I
Roch the wind in the clear day’s dawin
Blaws the cloods heilster-gowdie owre the bay
But there’s mair nor a roch wind blawin (1)
Thro the Great Glen o the warld the day
It’s a thocht that wad gar oor rottans
Aa thae rogues that gang gallus fresh an gay
Tak the road an seek ither loanins
Wi thair ill-ploys tae sport an play
II
Nae mair will our bonnie callants
Merch tae war when oor braggarts crousely craw (2)
Nor wee weans frae pitheid an clachan
Mourn the ships sailin doun the Broomielaw (3)
Broken faimlies in lands we’ve hairriet
Will curse ‘Scotlan the Brave’ nae mair, nae mair
Black an white ane-til-ither mairriet
Mak the vile barracks o thair maisters (4) bare
III
Sae come aa ye at hame wi freedom
Never heed whit the houdies croak for Doom (5)
In yer hoos aa the bairns o Adam
Will find breid, barley-bree an paintit rooms
When Maclean (6) meets wi’s friens in Springburn (7)
Aa thae roses an geans will turn tae blume (8)
An the black lad frae yont Nyanga (9)
Dings the fell gallows o the burghers doun.
English translation*
I
It’s a rough wind in the clear day’s dawning
Blows the clouds head-over-heels across the bay
But there’s more than a rough wind blowing
Through the Great Glen of the world today
It’s a thought that would make our rodents,
All those rogues who strut and swagger,
Take the road and seek other pastures
To carry out their wicked schemes
II
No more will our fine young men
March to war at the behest of jingoists and imperialists
Nor will young children from mining communities and rural hamlets
Mourn the ships sailing off down the River Clyde
Broken families in lands we’ve helped to oppress
Will never again have reason to curse the sound of advancing Scots
Black and white, united in friendship and marriage,
Will make the slums of the employers bare
III
So come all ye who love freedom
Pay no attention to the prophets of doom
In your house all the children of Adam
Will be welcomed with food, drink and clean bright accommodation
When MacLean returns to his people
All the roses and cherry trees will blossom
And the black guy from Nyanga
Will break the capitalist stranglehold on everyone’s life

NOTES
* from here
1) a wind of change is a metaphor dear to the political world, it is the wind of people protest, who claim their right to live a full and dignified life
2) are those who rant and foment the war to push the sons of the people forward
3) Glasgow’s main thoroughfare adjacent to the river Clyde: it is the pier from which many ships loaded with emigrants have left
4) the reference is to apartheid in South Africa when the blacks were deported to the “homeland of the south” and deprived of all political and civil rights.
5) In those years peace meant to protest against the atomic arms race and the fear of a nuclear conflict: the sign of peace that today belongs to the symbols shared on a global level was created in 1958 by the Englishman Gerald Holtom for the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, CND: as he himself declared, the three lines are the superposition of the letters N and D – which stand for Nuclear Disarmament – taken from the semaphore alphabet. The circle, on the other hand, symbolizes the Earth.

6) John Maclean (1879 -1923), Scottish socialist, known for his fierce opposition to the First World War. For this reason, in 1918 he was tried for sedition and imprisoned. There was a popular mobilization in his favor and a few months later he was released. In 1918 he ended up again in prison for obstruction to recruitment and sedition and he was released after 7 months; the months in jail have harmed the health of Maclean who will die at age 45; his communism evolved against the Scottish Labor parties to advocate Scotland’s independence and the return to the old social clan structure but on a communist basis
7) district of the working class of Glasgow. The south of Scotland heavily idustrialized from the second half of the 1800 transform Glasgow and the Clyde into a bulwark of radical socialists and communists so much to get the nickname “Red Clyde”
8) spring is the season of rebirth
-) Nyanga is a city in Cape Town, South Africa. The residents of Nyanga have been very active in protesting the laws of apartheid

The Battle of the Somme

Another bagpipe melody from World War I was composed by piper William Laurie (1881-1916) to commemorate one of the deadliest battles, the Battle of the Somme which began July 1916 with heavy losses from day one; in the end it will result 620.000 losses among the Allies and about 450.000 among the German rows: the melody is in 9/8 and it is considered a retreat march, not necessarily as a specific military maneuver. Laurie (or Lawrie) participated in the battle with the 8th Battalion Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders (Lawrie and John MacLellan served in the same band during the war), but severely tried by the wounds and life in the trench fell seriously ill and he was repatriated England where he died in November of the same year.

The Dubliners often with “Freedom Come-All-Ye”

The Malinky with Jimmy Waddel (at 3:39)

It was Dave Swarbrick who brought the piece to the Fireport Convention group after learning it from his friend and teacher Beryl Marriott

Albion Country Band

THE DANCE

A Scottish dance entitled The Scottish Lilt was composed shortly after 1746 to be practiced by ladies of good family who wished to court or entertain the gentlemen seducing them with their grace. It’s a Scottish National Dances traditionally matched with the melody The Battle of the Somme: the dance moves are inspired by the classical ballet


the steps in detail

LINK
http://unionsong.com/u597.html
https://www.antiwarsongs.org/canzone.php?lang=it&id=13463
http://www.andreagaddini.it/FreedomCamAllYe.html
http://mysongbook.de/msb/songs/f/freedomc.html
https://www.scotslanguage.com/articles/view/id/4996
https://www.wired.it/play/cultura/2014/02/21/nascita-simbolo-pace/
http://thebattleofthefield.tripod.com/id11.html
https://thesession.org/tunes/2923

Freedom Come All Ye

Read the post in English

Scritta nel 1960 da Hamish Henderson (1919-2002) per la Marcia della Pace a Holy Loch, presso Glasgow, “Freedom Come-All-Ye”  è una canzone contro la guerra, un grido di libertà contro la schiavitù e contro l’oppressione della classe lavoratrice e delle minoranze etniche, in nome della giustizia sociale. La canzone è in scots, mentre la melodia è una marcia da ritirata per cornamusa della prima guerra mondiale, arrangiata da John MacLellan (1875-1949) che la intitolò “The Bloody Fields of Flanders”;  Henderson ebbe modo di ascoltarla nel 1944 durante la seconda guerra mondiale mentre combatteva ad Anzio. La melodia tuttavia è una vecchia aria del Perthshire già nota con il titolo di “Busk Bush Bonnie Lassie

Dick Gaughan

Lorraine McIntosh live –
Luke Kelly

 


I
Roch the wind in the clear day’s dawin
Blaws the cloods heilster-gowdie owre the bay
But there’s mair nor a roch wind blawin (1)
Thro the Great Glen o the warld the day
It’s a thocht that wad gar oor rottans
Aa thae rogues that gang gallus fresh an gay
Tak the road an seek ither loanins
Wi thair ill-ploys tae sport an play
II
Nae mair will our bonnie callants
Merch tae war when oor braggarts crousely craw (2)
Nor wee weans frae pitheid an clachan
Mourn the ships sailin doun the Broomielaw (3)
Broken faimlies in lands we’ve hairriet
Will curse ‘Scotlan the Brave’ nae mair, nae mair
Black an white ane-til-ither mairriet
Mak the vile barracks o thair maisters (4) bare
III
Sae come aa ye at hame wi freedom
Never heed whit the houdies croak for Doom (5)
In yer hoos aa the bairns o Adam
Will find breid, barley-bree an paintit rooms
When Maclean (6) meets wi’s friens in Springburn (7)
Aa thae roses an geans will turn tae blume (8)
An the black lad frae yont Nyanga (9)
Dings the fell gallows o the burghers doun.
Traduzione italiana di Carla Sassi*
I
Forte il vento nell’alba del giorno chiaro/Sovverte le nuvole via per la baia,
Ma non v’è più il vento forte che soffiava
Attraverso la grande valle del mondo.
E’ un pensiero che invoglia i nostri ratti,/I briganti che infieriscono felici e intatti,
A prendere il cammino, in cerca di luoghi nuovi/Dove godere e giocare malvagi inganni.
II
Mai più la dolce gioventù dovrà
Marciare in guerra mentre i pavidi si vantano rauchi
Né i piccoli figli della miniera e del villaggio
Piangeranno le navi che salpano via dal Broomielaw.
Famiglie divise in terre da noi razziate
Non malediranno la Scozia guerriera, mai più;
Il nero e il bianco, l’uno all’altro uniti nell’amore,
Lasceranno deserte le vili caserme dei padroni.
III
Qui venite tutti, alla casa della libertà,
Non ascoltate i corvi che invocano rauchi la fine
Nella tua casa ogni figlio di Adamo
Troverà pane e birra e mura imbiancate.
E quando John MacLean si unirà ai compagni di Springburn
Tutte le rose ed i ciliegi fioriranno,
E un fanciullo nero dal lontano Nyanga
Frantumerà le forche feroci della città.

NOTE
* (dal libro “Poeti della Scozia contemporanea” a cura di Carla Sassi e Marco Fazzini, Supernova Editore, Venezia 1992)
1) il vento del cambiamente una metafora cara al mondo politico, è il vento di protesta del popolo che rivendita il suo diritto a vivere una vita piena e dignitosa
2) sono quelli che sbraitano e fomentano la guerra a mandare avanti in prima linea i figli del popolo
3) principale arteria di Glasgow adiacente al fiume Clyde: è il molo da cui sono partite tante navi carichi di emigranti
4) il riferimento è all’apartheid in Sud Africa quando i neri vennero deportati nelle “homeland del sud” e privati di ogni diritto politico e civile.
5) Non dimentichiamo che in quegli anni la pace voleva dire protestare contro la corsa all’armamento atomico e la paura di un conflitto nucleare: il segno di pace che oggi appartiene ai simboli condivisi a livello globale fu creato nel 1958 dall’inglese Gerald Holtom per La Campagna per il disarmo nucleare (Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, CND) : come dichiarò lui stesso, le tre linee sono la sovrapposizione delle lettere N e D – che stanno per Nuclear Disarmament – prese dall’ alfabeto semaforico. Il cerchio, invece, simboleggia la Terra.

6) John Maclean (1879 –1923), socialista scozzese, noto per la sua fiera opposizione alla prima guerra mondiale. Per questo nel 1918 fu processato per sedizione e imprigionato. Ci fu una mobilitazione popolare in suo favore e qualche mese dopo venne scarcerato. Ancora nel 1918 finì di nuovo in prigione per ostruzione al reclutamento e sedizione e di nuovo scarcerato dopo 7 mesi; i mesi in carcere hanno nuociuto alla salute di Maclean che morirà a 45 anni; il suo comunismo finì per discostarsi dai partiti laburisti scozzesi per propugnare l’indipendenza della Scozia e il ritorno all’antica struttura sociale dei clan ma su base comunista
6) quartiere della classe lavoratrice di Glasgow. Il sud della Scozia pesantemente idustrializzato a partire dalla seconda metà del 1800 trasformano Glasgow e il Clyde in un baluardo di socialisti radicali e comunisti tanto da ottenere il soprannome di “Clyde Rosso”
7) è la primavera la stagione della rinascita
8) Nyanga è una città a Città del Capo , in Sud Africa . I residenti di Nyanga sono stati molto attivi nella protesta contro le leggi dell’apartheid

The Battle of the Somme

Un’altra melodia per cornamusa sempre riconducibile alla I Guerra Mondiale, fu composta dal piper William Laurie (1881-1916) per commemorare una delle battaglie più letali, la battaglia della Somme (The Battle of the Somme) che iniziò il1 luglio 1916 con pesanti perdite fin dal primo giorno; alla fine risulteranno 620.000 perdite tra gli Alleati e circa 450.000 tra le file tedesche: la melodia è in 9/8 ed è considerata una marcia da ritirata, non necessariamente come specifica manovra militare. Laurie (o Lawrie) partecipò alla battaglia con l’8° Battaglione Argyll e Sutherland Highlanders (Lawrie e John MacLellan prestarono servizio nella stessa banda durante la guerra), ma duramente provato dalle ferite e dalla vita in trincea si ammalò gravemente e venne rimpatriato in Inghilterra dove morì nel novembre dello stesso anno.

I Dubliners spesso abbinata a “Freedom Come-All-Ye”

I Malinky la abbinano a Jimmy Waddel (inizia a 3:39)

Fu Dave Swarbrick a portare il pezzo nel gruppo Fireport Convention dopo averlo imparato dal suo amico e insegnante Beryl Marriott

Albion Country Band

LA DANZA

Una danza scozzese dal titolo The Scottish Lilt fu composta poco dopo il 1746 per essere praticata dalle madamigelle di buona famiglia che desideravano corteggiare o intrattenere i membri della nobiltà seducendoli con la loro grazia. E’ una Scottish  National Dances abbinata tradizionalmente  alla melodia The Battle of the Somme: i passi di danza sono ispirati al balletto classico

anche con due uomini

i passi nel dettaglio

FONTI
http://unionsong.com/u597.html
https://www.antiwarsongs.org/canzone.php?lang=it&id=13463
http://www.andreagaddini.it/FreedomCamAllYe.html
http://mysongbook.de/msb/songs/f/freedomc.html
https://www.scotslanguage.com/articles/view/id/4996
https://www.wired.it/play/cultura/2014/02/21/nascita-simbolo-pace/
http://thebattleofthefield.tripod.com/id11.html
https://thesession.org/tunes/2923

To Hear the Nightingale Sing One Morning in May

Leggi in Italiano

”The Bold Grenader”, “A bold brave bonair” or “The Soldier and the Lady” but also “To Hear the Nightingale Sing”, “The Nightingale Sings” and “One Morning in May” are different titles of a same traditional song collected in England, Ireland, America and Canada.

THE PLOT

The story belongs to some stereotypical love adventures in which a soldier (or a nobleman, sometimes a sailor) for his attractiveness and gallantry, manages to obtain the virtue of a young girl. The girls are always naive peasant women or shepherdesses who believe in the sweet words of love sighed by man, and they expect to marry him after sex, but they are inevitably abandoned.

NURSERY RHYME: WHERE ARE YOU GOING MY PRETTY MAID

soldierIn the nursery rhyme above “Where are you going my pretty maid” this seductive situation is sweetly reproduced and the illustrator portrays the man in the role of the soldier. Walter Craine (in “A Baby’s Opera”, 1877) represents him as a dapper gentleman, but in reality he is the archetype of the predator , the wolf with the fur inside and the woman of the nursery rhyme with his blow-answer seems to be a good girl who has treasured the maternal teachings

In other versions is the girl (bad girl !!) to take the initiative and to bring the young soldier in her house (see more), only the season is always the same because it is in the spring that blood boils in the veins; as early as 1600 there was a ballad called “The Nightingale’s Song: The Soldier’s Rare Musick, and Maid’s Recreation”, so for a song that has been around for so long, we can expect a great deal of textual versions and different melodies. An accurate overview of texts and melodic variations starting from 1689 here

FOLK REVIVAL: “They kissed so sweet & comforting”

This is the version almost at the same time diffused by the Dubliners and the Clancy Brothers, the most popular version in the 60’s Folk clubs.

The Dubliners

Clancy Brothers & Tommy Maker, from Live in Ireland, 1965
The Nightingale


I
As I went a walking one morning in May
I met a young couple so far did we stray
And one was a young maid so sweet and so fair
And the other was a soldier and a brave Grenadier(1)
CHORUS
And they kissed so sweet and comforting
As they clung to each other
They went arm in arm along the road
Like sister and brother
They went arm in arm along the road
Til they came to a stream
And they both sat down together, love
To hear the nightingale sing(2)
II
Out of his knapsack he took a fine fiddle(3)
He played her such merry tunes that you ever did hear
He played her such merry tunes that the valley did ring
And softly cried the fair maid as the nightingale sings
III
Oh, I’m off to India for seven long years
Drinking wines and strong whiskies instead of strong beer
And if ever I return again ‘twill be in the spring
And we’ll both sit down together love to hear the nightingale sing
IV
“Well then”, says the fair maid, “will you marry me?”
“Oh no”, says the soldier, “however can that be?”
For I’ve my own wife at home in my own country
And she is the finest little maid that you ever did see

NOTES
1) soldier becomes sometimes a volunteer, but the grenadier is a soldier particularly gifted for his prestige and courage, the strongest and tallest man of the average, distinguished by a showy uniform, with the characteristic miter headgear, which in America was replaced by a bear fur hat.
2) it is the code phrase that distinguishes this style of courting songs. The nightingale is the bird that sings only at night and in the popular tradition it is the symbol of lovers and their love conventions (vedi)
3) perhaps the instrument was initially a flute but more often it was a small violin or portable violin called the kit violiner (pocket fiddle): it was the popular instrument par excellence in the Renaissance. It is curious to note how in this type of gallant encounters the soldier has been replaced by the itinerant violinist, mostly a dance teacher, so it is explained how any reference to the violin, to its bow or strings could have some sexual connotations in the folk tradition

SECOND MELODY: APPALCHIAN TUNE

John Jacob Niles – One Morning In May

Jo Stafford The Nightingale

THIRD MELODY: THE MOST ANCIENT VERSION, THE GRENADIER AND THE LADY

The melody spread in Dorsetshire, so vibrant and passionate but with a hint of melancholy, a version more suited to the Romeo and Juliet’s love night and to the nightingale chant in its version of medieval aubade, also closer to the nursery rhyme “Where are you going my pretty maid” of which takes up the call and response structure.

To savor its ancient charm, here is a series of instrumental arrangements

Harp

Guitar

Le Trésor d’Orphée
Redwood Falls (Madeleine Cooke, Phil Jones & Edd Mann)

Isla Cameron The Bold Grenadier from “Far from The Madding Crowd”


I
As I was a walking one morning in May
I spied a young couple a makin’ of hay.
O one was a fair maid and her beauty showed clear
and the other was a soldier, a bold grenadier.
II
Good morning, good morning, good morning said he
O where are you going my pretty lady?
I’m a going a walking by the clear crystal stream
to see cool water glide and hear nightingales sing.
III
O soldier, o soldier, will you marry me?
O no, my sweet lady that never can be.
For I’ve got a wife at home in my own country,
Two wives and the army’s too many for me.

LINK
http://jopiepopie.blogspot.it/2018/02/nightingales-song-1690s-bold-grenadier.html
http://www.traditionalmusic.co.uk/folksongs-appalachian-2/folk-songs-appalacian-2%20-%200138.htm
http://folktunefinder.com/tunes/105092
https://www.fresnostate.edu/folklore/ballads/LP14.html
https://mainlynorfolk.info/folk/songs/onemorninginmay.html
http://www.mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=3646
http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=29541
http://www.military-history.org/soldier-profiles/british-grenadiers-soldier-profile.htm
http://www.wtv-zone.com/phyrst/audio/nfld/25/sing.htm
http://www.contemplator.com/america/nighting.html
http://www.mamalisa.com/?t=hes&p=1506

Lark in the Morning

Leggi in italiano

The irish song “The Lark in the Morning” is mainly found in the county of Fermanagh (Northern Ireland): the image is rural, portrayed by an idyllic vision of healthy and simple country life; a young farmer who plows the fields to prepare them for spring sowing, is the paradigm of youthful exaltation, its exuberance and joie de vivre, is compared to the lark as it sails flying high in the sky in the morning. Like many songs from Northern Ireland it is equally popular also in Scotland.
The point of view is masculine, with a final toast to the health of all the “plowmen” (or of the horsebacks, a task that in a large farm more generally indicated those who took care of the horses) that they have fun rolling around in the hay with some beautiful girls, and so they demonstrate their virility with the ability to reproduce.

Ploughman_Wheelwright
The Plougman – Rowland Wheelwright (1870-1955)

The Dubliners

Alex Beaton with a lovely Scottish accent

The Quilty (Swedes with an Irish heart)

CHORUS
The lark in the morning, she rises off her nest(1)
She goes home in the evening, with the dew all on her breast
And like the jolly ploughboy, she whistles and she sings
She goes home in the evening, with the dew all on her wings
I
Oh, Roger the ploughboy, he is a dashing blade (2)
He goes whistling and singing, over yonder leafy shade
He met with pretty Susan,, she’s handsome I declare
She is far more enticing, then the birds all in the air
II
One evening coming home, from the rakes of the town
The meadows been all green, and the grass had been cut down
As I should chance to tumble, all in the new-mown hay (3)
“Oh, it’s kiss me now or never love”,  this bonnie lass did say
III
When twenty long weeks, they were over and were past
Her mommy chanced to notice, how she thickened round the waist
“It was the handsome ploughboy,-the maiden she did say-
For he caused for to tumble, all in the new-mown hay”
IV
Here’s a health to y’all ploughboys wherever you may be
That likes to have a bonnie lass a sitting on his knee
With a jug of good strong porter you’ll whistle and you’ll sing
For a ploughboy is as happy as a prince or a king
NOTES
1) The lark is a melodious sparrow that sings from the first days of spring and already at the first light of dawn; it is a terrestrial bird which, however, once safely in flight, rises almost vertically into the sky, launching a cascade of sounds similar to a musical crescendo.
Then, closed the wings, he lets himself fall like a dead body until he touches the ground and immediately rises again, starting to sing again . see more
2) blade= boy, term used in ancient ballads to indicate a skilled swordsman
3) The story’s backgroung is that of the season of haymaking, starting in May, when farmers went to make hay, that is to cut the tall grass, with the scythe, putting it aside as fodder for livestock and courtyard’s animals . While hay cutting was a mostly masculine task, women and children used the rake to collect grass in large piles, which were then loaded onto the cart through the use of pitchforks.. see more

George Stubbs – Haymakers 1785 (Wikimedia)

Lisa Knapp from Till April Is Dead ≈ A Garland of May 2017, from Paddy Tunney (only I, II) (Paddy Tunney The Lark in the Morning 1995  ♪), the most extensive version comes from the Sussex Copper family, but Lisa further changes some verses.

I
The lark in the morning she rises off her nest
And goes whistling and singing, with the dew all on her breast
Like a jolly ploughboy she whistles and she sings
she comes home in the evening with the dew all on her wings
II
Roger the ploughboy he is a bonny blade.
He goes whistling and singing down by yon green glade.
He met with dark-eyed Susan, she’s handsome I declare,
she’s far more enticing than the birds on the air.
III
This eve he was coming home, from the rakes in town
with meadows been all green and the grass just cut down
she is chanced to tumble all in the new-mown hay
“It’s loving me now or never”, this bonnie lass did say
IV
So good luck to the ploughboys wherever they may be,
They will take a sweet maiden to sit along their knee,
Of all the gay callings
There’s no life like the ploughboy in the merry month of may

 

THE ENGLISH VERSION

This version was collected by Ralph Vaughan Williams in 1904 as heard by Ms. Harriet Verrall of Monk’s Gate, Horsham in Sussex, but already circulated in the nineteenth-century broadsides and then reported in Roy Palmer’s book “Folk Songs collected by Ralph Vaughan Williams”. Became into the English folk music circuit in the 60s the song was recorded in 1971 by the English folk rock group Steeleye Span with the voice of Maddy Prior.

The refrain is similar to that of the previous irish version, but here the situation is even more pastoral and almost Shakespearean with the shepherdess and the plowman who are surprised by the morning song of the lark, but with the reversed parts: he who tells her to stay in his arms, because there is still the evening dew, but she who replies that the sun is now shining and even the lark has risen in flight. The name of the peasant is Floro and derives from the Latin Fiore.

Steeleye Span from Please to See the King – 1971

Maddy Prior  from Arthur The King – 2001

I
“Lay still my fond shepherd and don’t you rise yet
It’s a fine dewy morning and besides, my love, it is wet.”
“Oh let it be wet my love and ever so cold
I will rise my fond Floro and away to my fold.
Oh no, my bright Floro, it is no such thing
It’s a bright sun a-shining and the lark is on the wing.”
II
Oh the lark in the morning she rises from her nest
And she mounts in the air with the dew on her breast
And like the pretty ploughboy she’ll whistle and sing
And at night she will return to her own nest again
When the ploughboy has done all he’s got for to do
He trips down to the meadows where the grass is all cut down.

NOTES
1)plow the field but also plow a complacent girl

LARK IN THE MORNING JIG

“Lark in the morning” is a jig mostly performed with banjo or bouzouki or mandolin or guitar, but also with pipes, whistles or flutes, fiddles ..
An anecdote reported by Peter Cooper says that two violinists had challenged one evening to see who was the best, only at dawn when they heard the song of the lark, they agreed that the sweetest music was that of the morning lark. Same story told by the piper Seamus Ennis but with the The Lark’s March tune

Moving Hearts The Lark in the Morning (Trad. Arr. Spillane, Lunny, O’Neill)

Cillian Vallely uilleann pipes with Alan Murray guitar

Peter Browne uilleann pipes in Lark’s march

LINK
https://www.mustrad.org.uk/songbook/larkmorn.htm
http://mainlynorfolk.info/steeleye.span/songs/thelarkinthemorning.html
http://thesession.org/tunes/62

Down by the Liffeyside

Leggi in italiano

Peadar Kearney (1883-1942), a famous Irish nationalist who wrote many popular songs, penned the lyrics of this irish street song “Down by the Liffeyside”, on the traditional tune “Down by the Tanyard Side”: he describes two sweethearts of the working class in the Dubin of 1920s, that are spending their Sunday to walk along the banks of the Liffey, the river that crosses the city of Dublin from West to East. The belle of the song is a street musician who entertains passers-by with patriotic songs with her melodeon.

Old Dublin: George street

Precisely for this reason, the reference to the struggle for united Ireland was a popular song in the folk circuit of the 60s and 70s.

Dominic Behan – from Down By The Liffeyside 1959
Dominic is the nephew of Peader Kearney and he learned the song directly from his uncle in the 40s.


Dubliners

Wolfe tones

Pecker Dunne

DOWN BY THE LIFFEYSIDE
I
‘Twas down by Anna Liffey (1), my love and I did stray
Where in the good old slushy mud the sea gulls sport and play
We got the whiff of ray(2) and chips and Mary softly sighed,
“Oh John, come on for a wan and wan (3)
Down by the Liffeyside.”
II
Then down along by George’s street the loving pairs to view
While Mary swanked it like a queen in a skirt of royal blue (4);
Her hat was lately turned and her blouse was newly dyed,
Oh you could not match her round the block,
Down by the Liffeyside
III
And on her old melodeon how sweetly could she play.;
“Good-by-ee” and “Don’t sigh-ee” and “Rule Brittanni-ay”
But when she turned Sinn Feiner(5) me heart near burst with pride,
To hear her sing the “Soldier’s Song(6)”,
Down by the Liffeyside
IV
On Sunday morning to Meath street (7) together we will go,
And it’s up to Father Murphy we both will make our vow
We’ll join our hands in wedlock bands (8) and we’ll be soon outside
For a whole afternoon, for our honeymoon (9),
Down by the Liffeyside

NOTE
1)  The Liffey is also known as the Anna Liffey, possibly because of the Irish for “River Liffey” – Abhainn na Life which sounds like “Anna Liffey” in English, Anna Livia statue  (Floozie in the Jacuzzi)-the river  represented as a young woman sitting on a slope with water flowing past her- is  in the Croppies Memorial Park next to the Liffey, near Heuston station

2) today the fishis are cod, haddock (an Atlantic fish similar to cod) and plaice. Already known in the days of Dickens, who included it in his most famous work, “Oliver Twist” (1838), some argue that it was some Italian immigrants who introduced this fryed food into the eating habits of the British and Irish, according to others instead it was the Spaniards.
3) wan and wan= one and one, this phrase (meaning “one of this, one of the other”) entered the vernacular in Dublin as “one and one”, which is still a common way of referring to fish and chips in the city
4) Royal blue is both a bright shade and a dark shade of azure blue. Traditionally, dictionaries define royal blue as a deep to dark blue, often with a purple or faint reddish tinge
5)  Sinn Féin is a left-wing Irish republican political party active in both the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.
6) Soldier’s Song  (Amhrán na bhFiann)  is the Irish national anthem
7) The Liberties is an area in central Dublin,  located in the southwest of the inner city, between the St. Patrick’s Cathedral and the Guinnes Storehouse where the church of St. Catherine is located
8)The two promised exchanged vows to take as husband and wife, sealing them with a ring or a token of love. Handfasting was practiced in Ireland and Scotland in the past: the wrists of the couple were tied together with a long ribbon (wedlock’s band) see
9)  Phoenix Park , to consume their marriage between some bushes

EASY AND SLOW

LINK
https://theballadeers.com/ire/db_d1959_t35_liffey.htm
http://www.celtic-lyrics.com/lyrics/171.html
https://www.expedia.it/vc/magazine/cultura-e-lifestyle/enogastronomia/fish-and-chips-ricetta-e-segreti-del-piu-famoso-piatto-britannico
https://www.irishtimes.com/life-and-style/people/meath-street-outpost-of-a-disappearing-dublin-1.1967467

Lungo gli argini del Liffey.

Read the post in English  

Peadar Kearney (1883-1942) famoso esponente nazionalista irlandese e autore di molti canti popolari ha scritto il testo della irish street song “Down by the Liffeyside” abbinandolo alla melodia tradizionale “Down by the Tanyard Side”: si descrivono due fidanzatini della classe lavoratrice di Dubino negli anni del 1920 che trascorrono la domenica passeggiando lungo gli argini del Liffey, il fiume che attraversa la città di Dublino da Ovest a Est. La bella della canzone è una musicista di strada che con il suo organetto intrattiene i passanti con canti patriottici.

la vecchia Dublino, George street

Proprio per questo richiamo alla lotta per l’Irlanda unita era un brano diffuso nel circuito folk degli anni 60-70.

Dominic Behan – in Down By The Liffeyside 1959
Dominic è il nipote di Peader Kearney e imparò la canzone direttamente dallo zio negli anni 40.

Dubliners

Wolfe tones

Pecker Dunne


I
‘Twas down by Anna Liffey (1), my love and I did stray
Where in the good old slushy mud the sea gulls sport and play
We got the whiff of ray(2) and chips and Mary softly sighed,
“Oh John, come on for a wan and wan (3)
Down by the Liffeyside.”
II
Then down along by George’s street the loving pairs to view
While Mary swanked it like a queen in a skirt of royal blue (4);
Her hat was lately turned and her blouse was newly dyed,
Oh you could not match her round the block,
Down by the Liffeyside
III
And on her old melodeon how sweetly could she play.;
“Good-by-ee” and “Don’t sigh-ee” and “Rule Brittanni-ay”
But when she turned Sinn Feiner(5) me heart near burst with pride,
To hear her sing the “Soldier’s Song(6)”,
Down by the Liffeyside
IV
On Sunday morning to Meath street (7) together we will go,
And it’s up to Father Murphy we both will make our vow
We’ll join our hands in wedlock bands (8) and we’ll be soon outside
For a whole afternoon, for our honeymoon (9),
Down by the Liffeyside
Traduzione italiana Cattia Salto
I
Era accanto al Liffey, che il mio amore e io passeggiavamo
Dove nel buon vecchio viscido fango i gabbiani si muovono liberi
sentivamo l’odore del pesce e delle patatine e Mary sospirava dolcemente,
“Oh John, andiamo per un fish&chips
giù lungo gli argini del Liffey. ”
II
Poi giù lungo George’s street a vedere gli innamoratini
mentre Mary si pavoneggiava come una regina in gonna blu scuro;
il cappello appena rimodellato e la camicetta tinta di fresco,
Oh, non la potevi eguagliare in tutto l’isolato
giù lungo gli argini del Liffey.
III
E sul suo vecchio organetto, come dolcemente sapeva suonare
“Good-by-ee” e “Do not sigh-ee” e “Rule Brittanni-ay”
ma quando passò allo Sinn Féin il mio cuore quasi esplodeva per l’orgoglio
di sentirla cantare la “Soldier’s Song”,
giù lungo gli argini del Liffey.
IV
La domenica mattina andremo insieme a Meath Street,
e davanti a Don Murphy entrambi ci scambieremo le promesse
uniremo le nostre mani con l’handasting e staremo subito fuori
per un intero pomeriggio, per la nostra luna di miele,
giù lungo gli argini del Liffey.

NOTE
1) Anna Liffey, è il personaggio allegorico di Anna Livia Plurabelle di James Joyce: la personificazione del fiume Liffey, la statua in bronzo dello scultore  Éamonn O’Doherty soprannominata dai dublinesi Floozie in the Jacuzzi è la rappresentazione del fiume nella forma di una donna dai capelli fluenti semisdraiata e si trova al centro di una vasca  nel Croppies Memorial Park

2) ray= è il pesce razza; oggi il pesce in pastella e poi fritto si prepara con cod (merluzzo), haddock (eglefino, un pesce atlantico simile al merluzzo) e plaice (platessa). Si sa che il prodotto era già conosciuto ai tempi di Dickens, che lo annoverò nella sua opera più celebre, “Oliver Twist” (1838), alcuni sostengono che furono gli immigrati italiani a introdurlo nelle abitudini alimentari dei britannici e degli irlandesi, secondo altri invece furono gli spagnoli.
3) wan and wan= one and one, dalla frase “one of this, one of the other”, un po’ di questo e un po’ di quello il modo di dire dublinese per il tipico piatto da passeggio delle Isole Britanniche il fish&chips servito nel cartoccio.
4) Il blu reale o blu reale inglese è una sorta di azzurro abbastanza carico e vivace. È abbastanza simile come colore al blu elettrico.
5)  Sinn Féin, letteralmente “noi stessi” (nel senso di noi soli) in gaelico irlandese, ma spesso reso in inglese come ourselves alone, è il movimento indipendentista irlandese fondato nel 1905 da Arthur Griffith; è un partito repubblicano di sinistra
6) Soldier’s Song  (Amhrán na bhFiann) fu scritto nel 1907. Il ritornello da solo fu formalmente adottato come inno nazionale nel 1926, al posto del precedente inno God Save Ireland, usato ufficiosamente.
7) è la zona delle Libertà di Dublino quartier ubicato tra la Cattedrale di San Patrizio e la Guinnes Storehouse dove si trova la chiesa di Santa Caterina
8) I due promessi si scambiavano i voti di prendersi come marito e moglie, suggellandoli con un anello o un pegno d’amore. In Irlanda e Scozia si praticava l’handfasting: i polsi degli sposi erano legati insieme con un lungo nastro (wedlock’s band). continua
9) sicuramente infrattandosi tra qualche cespuglio del Phoenix Park

EASY AND SLOW

FONTI
https://theballadeers.com/ire/db_d1959_t35_liffey.htm
http://www.celtic-lyrics.com/lyrics/171.html
https://www.expedia.it/vc/magazine/cultura-e-lifestyle/enogastronomia/fish-and-chips-ricetta-e-segreti-del-piu-famoso-piatto-britannico
https://www.irishtimes.com/life-and-style/people/meath-street-outpost-of-a-disappearing-dublin-1.1967467

A WARNING OLD SONG: MAIDEN NEVER WEDD AN OLD MAN!

Leggi in italiano

A Scottish humorous song, “Maids When You’re Young Never Wed An Old Man” discourages young women in marrying men who are too old, and its song, between irony and bitterness, is a warning to all.
The great difference in age between the two spouses was still a custom until the mid-1900s: older men married to twenties girls, who played the role of ante litteram carers!

The humor of the song springs from the allusive but never explicit language and the most obscene words are beeped maidenas “faloorum” and “ding doorum”: at first the young woman is courted by the older man and agrees to marry him, but when it’s time for going to bed she discovers that unfortunately her old man is impotent. So as soon as the old man falls asleep the girl, she throws herself into the arms of a young and manly lover.

Nowaday this song makes us smile but in the nineteenth century it was considered rather spicy: the simple allusion to sex was vulgar but the reference to impotence and adultery had to be outrageous! Despite everything, it became a popular song in Scotland, England, Ireland and America. The first publication dates back to 1869 in “Ancient Scottish Songs, Heroic Ballads” by David Herd under the title “Scant of Love, Want of Love”.

The Dubliners (Verses 1-3-4-5-6-7) The song was seen to be offensive due to its sexualized themes and was banned by RTÉ and the BBC

Mairi  Morrison & Alasdair Roberts in Urstan, 2012 (verses 1-2-4-3) for a more sober version. The CD was commissioned by Scotland’s Center for Contemporary Arts as a tribute to Gaelic music and culture. An artistic collaboration increasing freshness and creativity.

Lucy Ward in “Adelphi Has to Fly” 2011, nominated Best Traditional Track BBC Folk Awards 2012.

CHORUS
For he’s got no faloorum,
fadidle eye-oorum

He’s got no faloorum,
fadidle  all day
He’s got no faloorum,
he’s lost his ding doorum
so maids when you’re young,
never wed an old man

I
An old man  came courting me,
hey ding dooram day (1)
An old man came courting me,
me being Young(2)
An old man came courting me,
all for to  marry me(3)
Maids, when you’re young never wed an old man
II
When we sat down to tea,
hey doo me darrity
When we sat down to tea, me being young
When we sat down to tea, he started teasing me
Maids when you’re young never wed an old man
III
When we went to church,
hey ding dooram day
When we went to church,
me being young
When we went to church,
he left me in the lurch (4)
Maids when you’re young, never wed an old man
IV
When we went to bed,
hey ding doorum day
When we went to bed, me being young
When we went to bed,
he lay like he was dead (5)
Maids when you’re young never wed an old man
V
So I threw me leg  over him ,
hey ding dorum da
I flung me leg over him, me being young
I flung me leg over him, damned nearly smothered him
Maids when you’re young never wed an old man.
VI
When he went to sleep,
hey ding doorum day
When he went to sleep, me being young
When he went to sleep, out of bed I did creep
Into the arms of a handsome young man
VII
And I found his faloorum,
fadidle eye-oorum
I found his faloorum,
fadidle all day
I found his faloorum, he got my ding doorum
So maids when you’re young never wed  an old man
VIII
I wish this old man would die,
hey-ding-a  doo-rum
I wish this old man would die, me being Young
I wish this old man would die, I’d make the  money fly
Girls, for your sake, never wed an old man
IX
A young man is my delight,
hey-ding-a  doo-rum
A young man is my delight, me being Young
A young man is my delight, he’ll kiss you day  and night
Maids, when you’re young, never wed an old  man

NOTE
1) or “Hey do a dority”
2) or Hey-do-a-day
3) or Fain wad he mairry me
4) or ” I left him in the lurch”
5) or “he neither done nor said”, and” he lays like a lump of lead”

https://mainlynorfolk.info/eliza.carthy/songs/anoldmancamecourting.html
http://www.clarelibrary.ie/eolas/coclare/songs/cmc/
never_wed_an_old_man_pmcnamara.htm

http://sangstories.webs.com/anauldmancamcourtin.htm
http://mysongbook.de/msb/songs/m/maidswhe.html

Love is pleasing

“Love is pleasing” ma anche “Love is teasing” è una canzone tradizionale diffusa nelle isole britanniche e nel nord-america che era di moda nei folk club degli anni 60-70. Gli studiosi ritengono che i versi siano parte di una serie di “frasi fatte” provenienti dal grande calderone delle ballate tradizionali, così svincolati da una narrazione esprimono comunque un sentimento, quello dell’amore tradito (o dell’amore incostante).
The words of “Love is Teasing” resemble those found in three similar songs, “O Waly, Waly,” “The Water is Wide,” and “Down in the Meadows” and all of these can be traced back to the ballad “Jamie Douglas” (Child 204). In “Jamie Douglas,” a bride has been falsely accused of infidelity and is sent back to her father with an aching heart. All of the shorter songs have whittled away the narrative over time leaving nothing but an emotional core. Various versions journeyed back and forth between Ireland, Britain, and North America, and singers often augment whatever verses they have learned with others from a common stock of associated “floating” verses. (tratto da qui)

VERSIONE AMERICANA

ASCOLTA Jean Ritchie imparò la canzone nel 1946 da Peggy Staunton,  irlandese emigrata a New York

ASCOLTA Rhiannon Giddens in Tomorrow Is My Turn, 2015 che così scrive nelle note “I first heard Peggy Seeger sing this and immediately fell in love with it – as I found earlier recordings I got caught by Jean Ritchie’s version, with her idiosyncratic and hypnotic dulcimer playing. This is the ancient warning from woman to woman about the perfidies of man.


I
Love is teasing, love is pleasing
And love’s a pleasure when first it is new
But as love grows older it still grows colder
And fades away like the morning dew
II
Come all you fair maids, now take a warning
Don’t ever heed what a young man say
He’s like a star on some foggy morning When you think he’s near he is far away
III
I left my father, I left my mother
I left my brothers and sisters too
I left my home and kind relations
I left them all just to follow you.
Traduzione italiano di Cattia Salto
I
L’amore è un tormento, l’amore è un piacere e l’amore è piacevole quando è appena nuovo,
ma man mano che cresce l’amore si raffredda
e svanisce come rugiada all’alba
II
Venite tutte qui ragazze, e prendete il mio avvertimento: non date mai retta a quello che un giovanotto dice,  lui è come la stella in un mattino nebbioso, quando lo credete vicino, si è allontanato
III
Lasciai mio padre, lasciai mia madre
lasciai le mie sorelle e anche i miei fratelli
lasciai tutti gli amici e la mia fede
li lasciai tutti per seguirti

VERSIONE EMIGRATION SONG

Pur nella standardizzazione del genere il canto si suddivide in due filoni, nel primo una donna (ma anche un uomo) con il cuore a pezzi, rimasta senza punto di riferimento, sceglie di emigrare per l’America.
ASCOLTA The Dubliners

ASCOLTA Marianne Faithfull & Chieftains live


I
I wish, I wish, I wish in vain
I wish I was a youth again
But a youth again I can never be
Till apples grow
on an ivy tree
II
I left me father, I left me mother
I left all my sisters
and brothers too
I left all my friends and me own religion
I left them all for to follow you
III
But the sweetest apple is the soonest rotten
And the hottest love is the soonest cold
And what can’t be cured love
has to be endured love (1)
And now I am bound for America
IV
Oh love is pleasin’ and love is teasin’
And love is a pleasure when first it’s new
But as it grows older sure the love grows colder
And it fades away like the morning dew
V
And love and porter makes a young man older
And love and whiskey makes him old and grey
And what can’t be cured love has to be endured love
And now I am bound for America
Traduzione italiano di Cattia Salto
I
Vorrei, vorrei, vorrei ma non posso
vorrei essere di nuovo giovane
ma non potrò mai essere di nuovo giovane finchè le mele cresceranno sull’edera
II
Lasciai mio padre, lasciai mia madre
lasciai le mie sorelle e anche i miei fratelli
lasciai tutti gli amici e la mia fede
li lasciai tutti per seguirti
III
Ma la mela più dolce è quella che per prima marcisce e l’amore più appassionato è il primo che si raffredda, e quello ciò che non può guarire dall’amore, deve essere rafforzato dall’amore e ora sono in partenza per l’America
IV
L’amore è un piacere e l’amore è un tormento e l’amore è piacevole quando è appena nuovo
ma man mano che cresce l’amore si raffredda
e svanisce come rugiada all’alba
V
Amore e birra fanno di un giovane un uomo
e amore e whiskey lo fanno invecchiare e incanutire
e quello ciò che non può guarire dall’amore, deve essere rafforzato dall’amore e ora sono in partena per l’America

NOTA
1) letteralmente: e quello che non può essere amore curato deve essere amore sopportato
VERSIONE DRINKING SONG
La seconda verisone è un lamento più tipicamente femminile.
ASCOLTA Karan Casey live


I
I never thought my love would leave me
Until that morning when he stepped in
Well, he sat down and I sat beside him
And then our troubles, they did begin
II
Oh love is teasing and love is pleasing
And love is a pleasure when first it’s new
But love grows older and love grows colder
And it fades away like the morning dew
III
There is an alehous in yon town
And it’s there my love goes and he sits down
He takes a strange girl (1) upon his knee
And he tells to her what he once told to me
IV
I wish my father had never whistled(2)
And I wish my mother had never sung
I wish the cradle had never rocked me
And I wish my life, it had not begun
Traduzione italiano di Cattia Salto
I
Non avrei mai creduto che il mio amore mi avrebbe lasciata
fino a quel mattino quando entrò
beh si sedette e io mi misi accanto a lui
e allora i nostri guai iniziarono.
II
L’amore è un piacere e l’amore è un tormento e l’amore è piacevole quando è appena nuovo,
ma man mano che cresce l’amore si raffredda
e svanisce come rugiada all’alba
III
C’è una birreria in quella città
ed è dove il mio amore va a sedersi,
si prende una puttana sulle ginocchia
e le dice ciò che un tempo diceva a me
IV
Vorrei che mio padre non avesse mai suonato il flauto
e che mia mamma non avesse mai cantato
vorrei che la culla non mi avesse mai cullato
e che la mia vita non fosse mai cominciata

NOTE
1) stange girl non è solo una ragazza strana ma un eufemismo per prostituta
2) i genitori hanno fatto sesso

FONTI
https://peggyseeger.bandcamp.com/track/love-is-teasing
https://mudcat.org//thread.cfm?threadid=9734
http://mysongbook.de/msb/songs/l/loveteas.html
https://mainlynorfolk.info/shirley.collins/songs/loveisteasing.html
http://www.celticlyricscorner.net/casey/love.htm

Dirty Old Town by Ewan MacColl

Scritta da James Miller (alias Ewan MacColl) ‎ nel 1949 “Dirty Old Town” è ambientata a Salford (nel distretto della “Grande Manchester”): cresciuto nell’Inghilterra del Nord ma di origini scozzesi Ewan, attore, cantante, cantautore, produttore discografico, fa della sua città natale un embelma della rivoluzione industriale inglese ottocentesca.
Una triste e fumosa città-dormitorio inglese descritta da Marx e Engels come “un enorme quartiere operaio…una città assai malsana, sporca e degradata“.
Così note del suo songbook leggiamo: This superb song was written to cover a scene-change in a play which was set in Salford, Lancashire, the city which provided the philosopher Friedrich Engels with most of the information for his book ‘The condition of the working class in 1844’.
Oggi l’area dei moli è diventata una luccicante e moderna vetrina di architettura post-moderna.

L’area dell’Old Canal riqualificata architettonicamente

La canzone passa per tradizionale irlandese essendo stata divulgata prima dai Dubliners e dai Pogues poi.

ASCOLTA Ewan MacColl con la moglie Peggy Seeger con un arrangiamento jazz (nel video immagini di Salford negli anni 50-60) e li vediamo giovani innamorati lungo le rive del canale che passeggiano


I
I met my love
by the gas works [1] wall [2]
Dreamed a dream
by the old canal[3]
Kissed my girl
by the factory wall
Dirty old town[4]
Dirty old town
II
Clouds a drifting
across the moon
Cats a prowling on their beat
Spring’s a girl[5]
in the streets at night
III
I heard a siren[6]
from the docks
Saw a train[7]
set the night on fire
Smelled the smoke
on the Salford wind[8]
IV
I’m going to make me
a good sharp axe
Shining steel
tempered in the fire
Will chop you down
like an old dead tree[9]
Traduzione italiano di Cattia Salto
I
Incontravo il mio amore
accanto al muro dell’officina del gas, facevo progetti
dal vecchio canale,
baciavo la mia ragazza
contro il muro della fabbrica
Sporca vecchia città
Sporca vecchia città
II
Nuvole alla deriva
davanti alla luna
gatti furtivi a caccia
primavera è una bambina
nelle strade di sera
III
Udivo la sirena
dai moli
vedevo un treno
mettere a fuoco la notte
annusavo il fumo
nel vento di Salford
IV
Sto andando ad affilare
bene l’ascia
d’acciaio luccicante
temprato nel fuoco
e ti abbatterò
come un vecchio albero morto

NOTE
1) Nell’ottocento il gas che serviva per l’illuminazione pubblica e per la forza motrice veniva prodotto in un impianto industriale, erano le officine del gas con mastodontici gasometri che richiamano immagini di carri ricolmi di carbone affluire dai porti e lungo i canali fino alle Officine. La fabbrica del gas di Salford è stata la prima in Inghilterra, e Salford è stata la prima città al mondo ad avere le strade illuminate a gas. La richiesta di approvvigionamento di gas continuò ad aumentare finendo ad alimentare anche gli apparecchi domestici, (i fornelli per cuocere il cibo e le caldaie per produrre acqua calda). Il coke veniva cotto nei forni e il gas prodotto mandato nei grossi serbatoi in attesa della distribuzione. L’aria era pestilenziale e molto alto l’indice di mortalità degli operai fuochisti a causa delle esalazioni dei gas. Con l’uso del gas naturale tutte le officine del gas sono state dismesse e smantellate.
2) scritto anche come croft: è il terreno incolto delle aree di risulta urbane
3) il Manchester Ship Canal: evidentemente l’unico posto un po’ romantico dove andare a passeggiare con la ragazza a Salford era quel canale sebbene fiancheggiato dalle fabbriche. Il contrasto è stridente soprattutto se paragonato ai romantici incontri campestri descritti nelle canzoni tradizionali.
4) una old town emblematica: la città industralizzata con il quartiere operaio sovravvollato, malmesso e malsano, costruito nella zona più degradata della città.
5) sono i bambini che giocano nelle strade ai primi raggi di sole, perchè la strada era il loro salotto buono
6) la sirena delle navi
7) “un treno a vapore con il focolare che brillava nella notte” si tratta di uno Staem train, il treno con la locomotiva a vapore, alimentato con il carbone dal fuochista: più che le fiamme la caratteristica della locomotiva a vapore sono gli sbuffi di fumo oggetto di diversi studi e raffigurazioni nei quadri di Claude Monet, ma senz’altro con un po’ d’immaginazione i treni potevano essere paragonati a macchine infernali che mettevano a ferro e fuoco la notte. La cabina aperta del conducente lasciava intravedere la bocca del focolare quando i macchinisti lo caricavano di carbone e dal comignolo sprizzavano anche scintille che spesso incendiavano il sottobosco accanto alla linea ferroviaria.
8) Il verso non piacque alle autorità municipali di Salford e MacColl lo cambiò  in ‎‎“smelled the spring on the smoky wind”, in italiano: annusavo la primavera nel vento pieno di fumo; un verso però che sembra molto ironico, l’odore portato dal vento era quello dell’aria inquinata, un fumo grigio che sporcava di fuliggine tutta la città. Una volta entrato nel circuito folk il verso ha subito ulteriori rielaborazioni passando per sulphured e fino a diventare un Dublin wind
9) in effetti il porto di Salford è stato smantellato e il quartiere operaio abbattuto per costruirvi un moderno polo direttivo, ma non credo che sia quello che Ewan avesse in mente. Avrebbe voluto distruggere il sistema di sfruttamento dei lavoratori asserviti al mostro-fabbrica alimentato dalla logica del profitto di pochi capitalisti, l’ascia è quindi l’emblema del socialismo e di un diverso sistema di gestire il lavoro senza sfruttare l’uomo.
L’imagine poetica però è quella che accosta le alte ciminiere di mattoni e cemento che buttano fuori il fumo a dei vecchi alberi morti (al posto delle chiome verdi, il grigio dele polveri)

FONTI
https://www.antiwarsongs.org/canzone.php?id=45136&lang=it
http://www.songfacts.com/detail.php?id=25048
https://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=48907

Greenland Whale Fishery

” Greenland (Sperm) whale fishery” è una canzone del mare che risale forse al 1700, eppure ancora oggi, la più popolare canzone sulla caccia alla balena:  una baleniera in rotta verso la Groenlandia incrocia una balena, ammaina le lance per la caccia, ma uno degli equipaggi viene scagliato in mare  e il capitano  si rammarica per la perdita dei suoi uomini (e ancor più rimpiange il mancato guadagno!)

Ovviamente oggi facciamo il tifo per la balena, ma all’epoca la caccia in alto mare era una lotta quasi ad armi pari tra uomini e il gigantesco mammifero!
La canzone ha avuto un discreto successo durante il folk revival degli anni 60 (The Weavers, Burl Ives) eseguita con una melodia lenta, (essendo sostanzialmente un lament) ma anche con un arrangiamento più spavaldo ed energico.

ASCOLTA The Dubliners 1969

ASCOLTA Peter, Paul and Mary

ASCOLTA The Pougues, la versione che va per la maggiore tra i gruppi folk-rock.

ASCOLTA Van Dyke Parks in Rogue’s Gallery: Pirate Ballads, Sea Songs, and Chanteys, ANTI 2006 (strofe I, II, IV, V) – testo qui

Versione The Dubliners
I
Oh in eighteen-hundred and-forty-four(1)/Of March the eighteenth day
We hoisted our colours to the top of the mast
And for Greenland bore away, brave boys/And for Greenland bore away
II
The lookout on the mainmast(1) he stood/His spyglass in his hand
“There’s a whale, there’s a whale, there’s a whale fish” he cried
“And she blows at every span, brave boys/And she blows at every span”
III
The captain stood on the quarter deck
The ice was in his eye
“Overhaul, overhaul, let your jib sheets fall
And go put your boats to sea, brave boys/ And go put your boats to sea”
IV
The boats were lowered and the men aboard
The whale was full at view
Resolved, resolved was each whalerman bold/For to steer where the whalefish blew, brave boys
For to steer where the whalefish blew
V
The harpoon struck and the line paid out/With a single flourish of his tail
He capsized our boat and we lost five men(3)
And we did not catch that whale, brave boys/And we did not catch that whale
VI
The losin’ of those five jolly men
It grieved out captain sore
But the losin’ of that sperm whale fish
Now it grieved him ten times more, brave boys
Now it grieved him ten times more
VII
“Up anchor now” our captain he cried
“For the winter stars do appear
And it’s time that we left this cold country/And for the England we will steer, brave boys
And for the England we will steer”
VIII
Well, Greenland is a barren land
A land that bears no green
Where there’s ice and snow and the whalefishes blow
And the daylight’s seldom seen, brave boys/And the daylight’s seldom seen
Traduzione italiano di Cattia Salto
I
Nel 1844
il 18 marzo
issammo la bandiera sulla cima dell’albero maestro
e per la Groenlandia partimmo, miei bravi e per la Groenlandia partimmo
II
La vedetta stava sulla crocetta
con il cannocchiale in mano
“C’è una balena, c’è una balena, c’è una balena gridò
“E soffia a ogni gettito, mie bravi
soffia a ogni gettito”
III
Il capitano era in piedi sul ponte
con il ghiaccio negli occhi
“Ammainate le vele, ammainate le vele
di fiocco
e mettete le lance in mare, miei bravi, 
mettete le lance in mare
IV
Le lance furono calate con gli uomini a bordo,
la balena era in piena vista
risoluto, risoluto era ogni baleniere e spavaldo,
per portarsi dove soffiava la balena, miei bravi, per portarsi dove soffiava la balena
V
L’arpione colpì e la lenza mollata,
con un solo colpo della coda
rovesciò la lancia e perdemmo cinque uomini
e non catturammo quella balena miei bravi, non catturammo quella balena
VI
La perdita di quei cinque bravi ragazzi
addolorò il nostro capitano,
ma la perdita di quel capodoglio
ora lo addolorava dieci volte tanto, miei bravi
lo addolorava dieci volte tanto
VII
“Alzate l’ancora- gridò il capitano-
perchè sorgono le stelle d’inverno
ed è tempo di lasciare queste fredde terre
e per l’Inghilterra faremo rotta, miei bravi
per l’Inghilterra faremo rotta
VIII
Beh la Groenlandia è una terra sterile
una terra che non fiorisce,
dove c’è ghiaccio e neve e le balene soffiano
e la luce del sole è vista raramente, miei bravi,  la luce del sole è vista raramente

NOTE
1) Già nel 1576 l’Inghilterra aveva ottenuto il monopolio per la cattura delle balene nel Mare del Nord e nel Mar Bianco, e nel 1786 con una flotta di 162 navi avviò la caccia alla balena franca e alla balena di Groenlandia nello stretto di Davis:  è probabile che il testo sia stato rimaneggiato nei vari secoli, perlomeno fino al 1830 quando i mari della Groenlandia erano diventati poco proficui e la caccia si spostò verso la Baia di Baffin. A seconda delle versioni vengono citate date diverse e anche il nome di diverse navi, come pure cambia il nome del capitano
2) in the crosstrees
3) l’equipaggio di ogni barca era composto da sei uomini, il capitano o un ufficiale, l’arpionista e 4 rematori

ASCOLTA A. L. Lloyd, dal disco LP registrato insieme ad Ewan MacColl negli anni ’50 “Thar She Blows!” un classico canto ricreativo dei balenieri. Scrive nelle note: This is the oldest—and many think the best—of surviving songs of the whaling trade. It had already appeared on a broadside around 1725, very shortly after the South Sea Company decided to resuscitate the then moribund whaling industry, and sent a dozen fine large ships around Spitsbergen and the Greenland Sea. The song went on being sung with small changes all the time to bring it up to date. Our present version mentions the year 1834, the shipLion, its captain Randolph. Other versions give other years, and name other ships and skippers (there was a whaler the Lion, out of Liverpool, but her captain’s name was Hawkins, and she was lost off Greenland in 1817). We may take it that the incident described in the song is not historical but imaginary, a stylisation like those thrilling engravings of whaling scenes that were once so popular. But the song’s pattern of departure, chase, and return home, was imitated in a large number of whaling ballads made subsequently. It is the ace and deuce of whale songs. (tratto da qui)


I
They signed us weary whaling men
For the icy Greenland ground
They said we’d take a shorter way While we was outward bound, brave boys
While we was outward bound
II
Oh, the lookout up in the barrel stood With a spyglass in his hand
There’s a whale, there’s a whale, there’s a whale! He cried
And she blows at every span, brave boys And she blows at every span
III
The captain stood on the quarter-deck And the ice was in his eye
Overhaul, overhaul, let your davit tackles fall
And put your boats to sea, brave boys And put your boats to sea
IV
Well the boats got down and the men aboard
And the whale was full in view Resolved, resolved were these whalermen bold /To steer where the whale fish blew, brave boys/ To steer where the whale fish blew
V
Well, the harpoon struck, the line ran out/ The whale give a flurry with his tail/ And he upset the boat, we lost half a dozen men No more, no more Greenland for you, brave boys No more, no more Greenland for you
VI
Bad news, bad news – The captain said And it grieved his heart full sore
But the losing of that hundred pound whale Oh, it grieved him ten times more, brave boys Oh, it grieved him ten times more
VII
The northern star did now appear It’s time we’ll anchor weigh
To stow below our running gear
And homeward bear away, brave boys And homeward bear away
VIII
Oh Greenland is a dreadful place
A place that’s never green
Where the cold winds blow and the whale fish go
And the daylight’s seldom seen, brave boys And the daylight’s seldom seen
Traduzione italiano di Cattia Salto
I
Ci arruolarono stanchi balenieri per le terre ghiacciate della Groenlandia
Ci dissero che avremmo preso una strada più breve mentre eravamo in partenza,  miei bravi
mentre eravamo in partenza

II
Oh la vedetta stava sulla crocetta
con il cannocchiale in mano
“C’è una balena, c’è una balena, c’è una balena gridò
“E soffia a ogni gettito, mie bravi
soffia a ogni gettito”
III
Il capitano era in piedi sul ponte
con il ghiaccio negli occhi
“Ammainate, ammainate mollate le cime
e mettete le lance in mare, miei bravi, 
mettete le lance in mare
IV
Le lance furono calate con gli uomini a bordo,
la balena era in piena vista
risoluto, risoluto era ogni baleniere e spavaldo,
per portarsi dove soffiava la balena, miei bravi, per portarsi dove soffiava la balena
V
L’arpione colpì e la lenza mollata,
la balena dieve un colpo della coda
e rovesciò la lancia e perdemmo una mezza dozzina di uomini
niente più Groenlandia per voi, miei bravi, niente più Groenlandia per voi,
VI
Pessime notizie, pessime notizie -gridò il capitano – con il cuore addolorato dalla pena, ma la perdita di quelle 100 sterline di balena, Oh  lo addolorava dieci volte tanto, miei bravi
lo addolorava dieci volte tanto
VII
“Sorge la stella polare è tempo di  alzare l’ancora-
stivare la nostra attrezzatura
e seguire la rotta verso casa, miei bravi
e seguire la rotta verso casa
VIII
La Groenlandia è posto spaventoso
una terra che non fiorisce,
dove i venti freddi soffiano e le balene vanno
e la luce del sole è vista raramente, miei bravi,  la luce del sole è vista raramente

NOTE
1) la data è quantomai variabile, a seconda delle versioni, c’è da rilevare che la caccia alla balena si spostò nel 1830 dalla Groenlandia alla Baia di Baffin. La caccia in Groenlandia era stata iniziata da Olandesi e Inglesi all’inizio del XVI° secolo
2) in the crosstrees

continua

FONTI
http://www.arcoacrobata.it/flash/pdf/mare1/05.pdf
https://www.grizzlyfolk.com/2017/08/31/greenland-whale-fishery-folk-attic/
http://compvid101.blogspot.it/2011/07/when-whale-gets-strike-greenland-whale.html
https://anglofolksongs.wordpress.com/2014/04/01/greenland-whale-fishery/
https://mainlynorfolk.info/lloyd/songs/thegreenlandwhalefishery.html
https://ismaels.wordpress.com/2010/06/01/rogue%E2%80%99s-gallery-the-art-of-the-siren-38/