Month: May 2019

The Seasons Of The Year

Lucy Broadwood had this song from John Burberry, a Sussex gamekeeper, in 1892, which was published in her pioneering collection, English County Songs. The last verse, a different kind of reflection on the year, makes me ponder.

My Boy Willie

John Bradley of Shipston-on-Stour, Warwickshire, sang this song to Cecil Sharp on 22 August 1911 and Randolph Caldecott painted the illustration. This was one of many songs I enjoyed as a boy, without the faintest notion of what it was about.

With Jockie To The Fair

With Jockie (or Jockey) To The Fair first appeared in print in The Songster’s Companion of 1772. Its origins are unknown. The music is used by morris dancers to this day. I searched in vain for a suitable picture of a young lady escaping…

The Banks Of Green Willow

As we now have it, this ancient ballad is enigmatic, though a little clearer if we recall the story of Jonah in the Bible, or the incident on the ship taking the apostle Paul to Rome in which a bad storm was blamed on…

The Worcestershire Wedding

The Worcestershire Wedding two verses from Mrs Marina Russell, Upwey, Dorset, January / February 1907. Collected by Henry Hammond. Variant tune and additional words from a broadside. The painting is The Village Wedding, by Samuel Luke Fildes. Thomas Hardy describes wedding parties in the…

Sally My Dear

Sally My Dear was collected by Cecil Sharp from Jack Barnard at Bridgwater, Somerset, 10 April 1906. The top picture is a handsome garganey photographed at Slimbridge by Nigel Key.

A-Nutting We Will Go

The song came from John Northover, Uploaders, Dorset. May 1906. Two verses were collected by Henry Hammond, the remainder taken by Frank Purslow from a broadside. Several Morris sides dance to versions of the tune. There are no nuts to be gathered in May. The children’s rhyme…