Anthologies   •   Songs of Christmas: Folk Songs of Britain: Volume 9

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  • Songs of Christmas: Folk Songs of Britain: Volume 9
    • 1961 - Caedmon TC 1224 LP (USA)
  • Side One
    1. Cornish Wassail Song
      1. Charlie Bate, Padstow, Cornwall
      2. Truro Wassail Bowl Singers, Malpas, Cornwall
    2. The Orkney New Year's Carol — Sidney Scott and company, N. Ronaldsay, Orkney
    3. The Welsh "Mari Lwyd" Ceremony
      1. AHobby horse party, Llangynwyd, Glamorgan, S. Wales
      2. Margaretta Thomas, Nantgarw, Glamorgan, S. Wales
    4. The Joys of Mary — Teresa Maguire, Belfast, N. Ireland
    5. The Holly and The Ivy — Peter Jones, Bromsash, Ross, Hereford
    6. The Twelve Days of Christmas — Bob and Ron Copper, Rottingdean, Brighton, Sussex
    7. The Bitter Withy
      1. Charlotte Smith, Tarrington, Ledbury, Hereford
      2. William Payne, Gloucester
    8. As I Sat on A Sunny Bank — John Thomas, Camborne, Cornwall
    9. The Singing of The Travels — Mummers, Symondsbury, Bridport, Dorset
    10. Divers And Lazarus — Emily Bishop, Bromsberrow Heath, Hereford
    11. The Gower Wassail Song — Charlie Bate, Padstow, Cornwall
  • Side Two
    1. The Christ-Child Lullaby (Taladh and Leinbh Losa) — Group, S. Uist, Hebrides
    2. The St. Clement's Song — Phyllis Carnwell, Hammerwich, Stafford
    3. The Shrove Tuesday Pancake Song — Herbert Prince, Warminster, Wiltshire
    4. Shepherds Arise — Bob and Ron Copper, Rottingdean, Brighton, Sussex
    5. The Cherry Tree Carol — John Partridge, Cinderford, Gloucester
    6. Somerset Wassail Song — Harry and Walter Sealy, Ash Priors, Taunton, Somerset
    7. Hunting The Wren — Joe and Winifred Woods, Isle of Man
    8. Cheshire Souling Song — Antrobus Soulcakers, Northwich, Cheshire
    9. Six Jolly Miners — Louis Rowe, Chapeltown, Sheffield, W. Yorks
    10. John Barleycorn — Boggins at the Hood Game, Haxey, Lincoln
    11. Hal-An-Tow — Townspeople with Band, Helston, Cornwall.
    12. Huntingdonshire May Carol — Mrs. Church and Hall, Biddenham, Bedford
    13. "Oss, Oss, Wee Oss"-Cornish May Carol — Hobby Horse Party, Padstow, Cornwall

  • Credits
    • Collected & Edited by Peter Kennedy & Alan Lomax
    • Recorded by Peter Kennedy, except …
      • Track: 4 — Recorded by Seán O'Boyle
      • Tracks: 5 & 7b — Recorded by Patrick Shuldham-Shaw & Maud Karpeles
      • Tracks: 12 & 24 — Recorded by Alan Lomax
      • Track: 18 — Recorded by L. Daiken
      • Track: 22 — BBC Sound Archive
    • Musical notation by Michael Bell
    • Cover:
      • Woodcut: Fritz Eichenberg
      • Design: Hubicki
    • Library of Congress Number R66-1786 applies to this record.

Sleeve Notes

"A collection of songs about holidays, especially Christmas but also May Day, Shrove Tuesday and other frivolities."

About The Series — With the publication of this series, the full range of British folksongs can be heard for the first time as performed by authentic folk singers. The records were made in pubs and country cottages in isolated sections of the island. Some of the singers are old, others conform to ancient singing styles which will surprise some listeners; yet, in their performances, folk song lives in all of its subtleties. Print and musical notation cannot convey its flavor. Professional singers bury its charm and its nuances under the weight of their training. The only way in which the ballads of the people can be understood and appreciated properly is by listening to traditional country singers, such as these.

This collection was begun in 1950 by Alan Lomax and Peter Kennedy. Alan Lomax came to Great Britain, after years of field work in the United States as head of the Archive of American Folk Song in the Library of Congress, to find out whether there was a tradition of living folk music connected with the material he had been studying in the United States. His recording tour of Great Britain and Ireland turned up such beautiful material that other collectors were encouraged to begin field work. The principal figure in this group was Peter Kennedy, whose father headed up the English Folk Dance Society and who had already done work of the first importance in collecting and teaching English folk dances. Employed by the BBC, along with Seamus Ennis, and working in collaboration with Hamish Henderson of Scotland, Kennedy and Lomax discovered scores of fine ballad singers and taped thousands of songs. These volumes are samplings of their huge collection.