Poem written in the 1800's by Banjo Paterson, Australia's National Poet. I heard it as a song from an Australian actor in Glasgow over 30 years ago. We had both been drinking so the tune as I remembered it, and now play it, is nothing like the original.
MARY ALICE JONES:
Learnt from a cassette given to me by Iain Mackintosh of a friend of his in the U.S.A. This song shows beautifully the sexism that still faces women trying to get employment in certain professions.
BLACK IS THE COLOUR:
A song I learnt in the late 50's from a pirate recording of Nina Simone. Once again the tune as I remembered and played it seems to bear no resemblance to the original. Many people now play my version.
I LIKE BEER:
A Song I can really identify with, which I learnt trom a tape ot Mack Davis played to me, once again by Iain Mackintosh.
SHE MOVED THROUGH THE FAIR:
Traditional Irish song of love and the supernatural.
SHIT I'VE FORGOTTEN THE WORDS:
Learnt from Murray Lewis of Bracknell who sang it to me in a pub in Stony Stratford.
Sailor's love song from Nova Scotia. I have collated words from other trad. songs and re-written some. The tune, once again, has been changed a little due to my lousy memory.
HILLS OF LORNE/OLD FRENCH/WOOD CHOPPER'S REEL:
Three fiddle tunes by Kate. The first slow air is from Scotland and the other two are French Canadian.
PUB WITH NO BEER:
Australian song which was a hit in the 1950's for Slim Dusty. In 1982 in Australia I heard three different versions — The best from Ted Egan. We had this bizarre idea that yodelling is used to locate places with beer in the Australian Desert and that dingos confuse everything because their howls sound like yodels to a thirst — crazed person.
Shaker Hymn which Kate learnt from the singing of her grandfather, Charlie Edwards.
Murder Ballad from Appalachia which I learnt in the early 60's, I think, from a recording of the Louvain brothers, yet again, it is somewhat different from the original.
Learnt from the singing Mal Waite who I met at Cleckheaton Folk Festival in the late 5O's. She says it conies from America but has no idea from which singer or author
JOCK OF BREDESLIE:
Old Scots ballad most of which is from the version recorded in 1953 by Alan Lomax of John Strachan.
IF YOU GO AWAY:
Jacques Brel song'translated by Rod McKuen. I think this the saddest and best love song I have ever heard.
IF IT WASNAE FOR THE UNIONS:
From the late great Matt McGinn a song even more relevant now in the Britain of the 90's than in the 60's when Matt wrote it and I first recorded it.
Of the 15 tracks on this recording 10 have never been recorded by me before. 4 are from 1960's recordings which have not been available for 25 years and one, Mary Anne, I recorded 15 years ago and thought I could do better. Kate sings lead vocals on "Mary Alice Jones" and "Amazing Grace", and Muriel sings lead on " She Moved Through The Fair " and " If You Go Away ".
I thought of calling this a wedding album since there is something old, something new, something borrowed and something a wee bit blue. I hope you enjoy it.