Long Time Since I Had A Lesson


I wish I’d asked Sydney Carter more about some of the songs he wrote. Glass Of Water and Port Mahon have a wistful quality, but Long Time Since I Had A Lesson seems the most poignant of all. All he said of the song was: ‘It’s founded on fact. A girl wrote to her former teacher in the British Council “Never shall I forget you.”                                     Sidney once worked in the British Council.

The Gablory Man


9-green-grows.jpegThe word is little known south of the border and unlike in my own childhood  the strolling beggars and men of the road are now scarce both in the north and south; however the songs and music live on, likewise the singers and players. My copy of The Gablory Man came from a girl I taught in a village in deepest Hertfordshire, which is a fair walk from Scotland even with a following wind.

I Live In Trafalgar Square


The words & music of this rather clever song are by C S Murphy 1902. It had a brief revival in the folk clubs of the late sixties, when I learned it.

I once sang in Trafalgar Square perched on the empty plinth. It was a huge televised affair and I think something to do with the British Council of Churches, but I forget the purpose of the occasion and I certainly didn’t sing this song. Nowadays one voice and a guitar would not be considered adequate musical interest, even if several thousand people could have heard me.

There’s more about the music hall and this album in Albums 6 of the menu bar.



After writing out these traditional tunes I discovered that they not only went well one at a time but could be played together!

I really like the colourful horse parade at the annual Festival of the Horse and Boys’ Ploughing Match in Orkney; there’s not a boy or horse among them! Click a pic to get a full-size view of all the photos while you listen to the music.