Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafehuddy

Post to this Thread - Sort Descending - Printer Friendly - Home


Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs

DigiTrad:
THE HIRING FAIR
THE HIRING FAIR AT HAMILTONSBAWN
THE SALT


Related threads:
(origins) Origins: Hiring Fair at Hamiltonsbawn (16)
Lyr Req: The Hiring Fair (Ralph McTell) (19)
Hiring Fairs (2)
Lyr Req: The Hiring Fair (Ralph McTell) (6)
Lyr Add: Wreckenton Hiring (1)
Lyr/Chords Req: The Hiring Fair (Ralph McTell) (2)
Lyr/Chords Req: The Hiring Fair (Ralph McTell) (5)


In Mudcat MIDIs:
An Spealadoir
An Spealadoir 2 ("This is the tune that Rosie sang this tune to. I made it myself by trial and error" Brían. )
The Daysman
Magherafelt Hiring Fair
Strabane Hiring Fair


ard mhacha 01 Jul 01 - 01:55 PM
Fergie 01 Jul 01 - 03:05 PM
ard mhacha 01 Jul 01 - 04:15 PM
GUEST,DWAcorn 01 Jul 01 - 04:45 PM
nutty 01 Jul 01 - 05:07 PM
toadfrog 01 Jul 01 - 05:34 PM
toadfrog 01 Jul 01 - 05:45 PM
mooman 01 Jul 01 - 07:02 PM
alison 01 Jul 01 - 10:20 PM
catspaw49 01 Jul 01 - 10:31 PM
John Nolan 01 Jul 01 - 10:35 PM
mg 02 Jul 01 - 12:28 AM
Gary T 02 Jul 01 - 01:48 AM
jacko@nz 02 Jul 01 - 02:31 AM
Ringer 02 Jul 01 - 05:56 AM
ard mhacha 02 Jul 01 - 07:52 AM
Ringer 02 Jul 01 - 11:14 AM
MMario 02 Jul 01 - 11:24 AM
IanC 02 Jul 01 - 11:46 AM
ard mhacha 02 Jul 01 - 01:21 PM
IanC 03 Jul 01 - 04:31 AM
sian, west wales 03 Jul 01 - 07:57 AM
Wolfgang 03 Jul 01 - 08:11 AM
ard mhacha 03 Jul 01 - 11:40 AM
IanC 03 Jul 01 - 11:59 AM
ard mhacha 03 Jul 01 - 01:19 PM
ard mhacha 03 Jul 01 - 02:07 PM
ard mhacha 03 Jul 01 - 02:25 PM
nutty 03 Jul 01 - 05:23 PM
IanC 04 Jul 01 - 04:09 AM
Aidan Crossey 04 Jul 01 - 04:44 AM
ard mhacha 04 Jul 01 - 05:01 AM
cetmst 04 Jul 01 - 07:24 AM
Aidan Crossey 04 Jul 01 - 07:32 AM
Aidan Crossey 04 Jul 01 - 07:53 AM
ard mhacha 04 Jul 01 - 09:20 AM
John Nolan 04 Jul 01 - 10:02 AM
ard mhacha 04 Jul 01 - 11:22 AM
pavane 04 Jul 01 - 11:42 AM
Aidan Crossey 04 Jul 01 - 11:54 AM
ard mhacha 04 Jul 01 - 01:45 PM
GUEST,Mac Tattie 04 Jul 01 - 02:40 PM
John Nolan 04 Jul 01 - 04:27 PM
GUEST,Mac Tattie 04 Jul 01 - 06:11 PM
pavane 05 Jul 01 - 11:04 AM
IanC 05 Jul 01 - 11:08 AM
pavane 05 Jul 01 - 11:19 AM
pavane 05 Jul 01 - 11:20 AM
nutty 05 Jul 01 - 01:29 PM
MMario 05 Jul 01 - 02:12 PM
ard mhacha 05 Jul 01 - 02:27 PM
Malcolm Douglas 05 Jul 01 - 02:52 PM
pavane 05 Jul 01 - 03:01 PM
MMario 05 Jul 01 - 03:04 PM
pavane 05 Jul 01 - 03:11 PM
MMario 05 Jul 01 - 03:44 PM
pavane 05 Jul 01 - 04:58 PM
pavane 05 Jul 01 - 06:47 PM
Matthew Edwards 05 Jul 01 - 07:57 PM
ard mhacha 06 Jul 01 - 06:12 AM
ard mhacha 06 Jul 01 - 10:17 AM
GUEST,Conán 06 Jul 01 - 09:58 PM
Nerd 07 Jul 01 - 05:48 AM
ard mhacha 07 Jul 01 - 07:17 AM
GUEST,IanC at British Library 07 Jul 01 - 07:45 AM
Brían 08 Jul 01 - 07:49 AM
Susanne (skw) 09 Jul 01 - 08:23 PM
Matthew Edwards 12 Jul 01 - 08:29 PM
Brían 12 Jul 01 - 10:11 PM
Matthew Edwards 16 Jul 01 - 07:06 PM
Brían 16 Jul 01 - 10:00 PM
Wolfgang 15 Aug 01 - 12:04 PM
ard mhacha 15 Aug 01 - 02:40 PM
GUEST,Annraoi 15 Aug 01 - 07:23 PM
GUEST,folktrax.org 16 Aug 01 - 06:58 AM
ard mhacha 16 Aug 01 - 01:07 PM
Big Tim 16 Aug 01 - 05:42 PM
Matthew Edwards 16 Aug 01 - 07:00 PM
ard mhacha 17 Aug 01 - 01:22 PM
IanC 11 Sep 01 - 04:32 AM
ard mhacha 11 Sep 01 - 08:24 AM
GUEST,Boab 12 Sep 01 - 02:13 AM
GUEST,dougboywonder 12 Sep 01 - 02:41 PM
weerover 14 Feb 03 - 09:22 AM
GUEST,stooriefit 14 Feb 03 - 10:14 AM
weerover 14 Feb 03 - 10:41 AM
Ballyholme 14 Feb 03 - 11:05 AM
GUEST,Guest, Big Tim 15 Feb 03 - 10:56 AM
GUEST,Jim I 15 Feb 03 - 04:32 PM
GUEST,Q 15 Feb 03 - 06:15 PM
GUEST,Philippa 04 Apr 03 - 06:57 AM
Dave Bryant 04 Apr 03 - 08:19 AM
Jenny Islander 04 Apr 03 - 06:08 PM
ard mhacha 05 Apr 03 - 04:13 PM
Felipa 06 Apr 03 - 06:23 PM
GUEST,Boab 07 Apr 03 - 03:42 AM
Wolfgang 07 Apr 03 - 08:04 AM
Felipa 07 Apr 03 - 04:40 PM
Auxiris 08 Apr 03 - 03:16 AM
MMario 08 Apr 03 - 12:43 PM
MMario 08 Apr 03 - 01:38 PM
Felipa 08 Apr 03 - 02:34 PM
Felipa 08 Apr 03 - 04:21 PM
MMario 09 Apr 03 - 08:52 AM
MMario 09 Apr 03 - 10:16 AM
MMario 09 Apr 03 - 10:41 AM
Felipa 09 Apr 03 - 02:55 PM
Felipa 09 Apr 03 - 03:26 PM
GUEST,Boab 10 Apr 03 - 03:23 AM
Felipa 10 Apr 03 - 01:45 PM
GUEST,Philppa 11 Apr 03 - 06:47 AM
GUEST,Philippa 11 Apr 03 - 06:49 AM
MMario 11 Apr 03 - 10:11 AM
Felipa 22 May 03 - 11:04 AM
GUEST 15 Jul 04 - 10:07 AM
pavane 01 Mar 06 - 11:33 AM
GUEST,Maire. 17 Mar 09 - 01:55 PM
Rog Peek 09 Jun 09 - 12:26 PM
Share Thread
more
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:









Subject: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 01 Jul 01 - 01:55 PM

Hello All, Is there any good oul swede bashers, culchies,or country hacks could enlighten me on a topic I find fascinating. It was white slavery, so there should be plenty of songs. Slan Ard Mhacha.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Fergie
Date: 01 Jul 01 - 03:05 PM

an spailpín fanach. The Rocks of Bán.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 01 Jul 01 - 04:15 PM

Fergie, Thanks a chara, "Come all ye loyal heroes", I have that one. How about the overseas brigade, english, Geordies byre muckers, Aussies, US guys, know anybody was hired out to our beloved miserable assed farmers, Slan Ard Mhacha.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: GUEST,DWAcorn
Date: 01 Jul 01 - 04:45 PM

Ralph McTell is famous for his beautiful song " The Girl from the Hiring Fair".


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: nutty
Date: 01 Jul 01 - 05:07 PM

If you put "hiring fair" in the DT/Forum search box you will get a variety of songs and threads that have been discussed previously.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: toadfrog
Date: 01 Jul 01 - 05:34 PM

Well, if I comprehend rightly what a "hiring fair song" is, the dt has Barnyards of Delgaty(Scotland); Cockies of Bungaree (Austrialia); while the forum has Nicky tams, which is either a hiring fair song or something like it. And "Bogie's Bonnie Belle" is also a lot like a hiring fair song and is somewhere the dt, but reception is v. sluggish today, and life is too short to preform searches and provide more clickies from here. Norman Kennedy sings one called "Drumdelegie," which I'll bet can either be found on the dt or elsewhere on the net. Is this what you have in mind by "hiring fair songs," or does the whole song have to be about events at the fair? Jamie Taylor sings one called "The Haill Week O' the Fair," which I think is available via the Bothy Band, and also from the University of Edinburgh I can't find it on the dt.

American hiring of farm labor in the 19th Century was v. similar to practices in Britain. See Horwitz, The Transformation of American Law, 1780-1860, pp. 186-187. But so far as I know, no laborer's songs; the closest equivalent would have to be cowboy songs.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: toadfrog
Date: 01 Jul 01 - 05:45 PM

Nutty, I just put in "hiring fair" as you said, and got a whole bunch of threads all of which are about a song called "The Girl from the Hiring Fair," which seems to be a pop or rock song. I think this guy was looking for other songs about hiring fairs, besides that one.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: mooman
Date: 01 Jul 01 - 07:02 PM

And then there's Bogey's Bonnie Belle (which I always mix up and announce as Belle's Bonny Bogey if I'm singing it!).

mooman


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: alison
Date: 01 Jul 01 - 10:20 PM

Ralph McTell's "girl from the hiring fair" is not a pop song...... he wrote it for Fairport Convention... although I prefer Ralph's version.......

it is about a couple who were bought at the hiring fair and fall in love.......

slainte

alison


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: catspaw49
Date: 01 Jul 01 - 10:31 PM

Nothing from me on this one, but an Uncle of mine was very in very poor health and also very kind hearted to us kids. He'd often hire someone to play with us in his absense. One of the locals was into making and flying kites so one Spring my uncle saw him at the bar on a Saturday night and employed him to go out on Sunday and fly kites with us. I have a picture someone took of Uncle Guido that night, down at the local tavern........He was hirin' a kite.

Sorry........Continue with your discussion...........

Spaw


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: John Nolan
Date: 01 Jul 01 - 10:35 PM

Kevin Mitchell's version of "The Magherafelt May Fair" tells of a single Irish girl hoping to attract a husband at a hiring fair. Pragmatic and wistful both. The bothy ballad "Sleepytoon" supplies a useful insight into rotten working conditions and the dogged spirits of the farm workers. The transportation song "Tattie Jock" gives a glimpse into the grim legal treatment that hired farmworkers could expect in the 1800s.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: mg
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 12:28 AM

I just wrote the words but no tune yet about the Hawaian kanakas who were "indentured" by their king to the Hudson's Bay Company here in Vancouver, WA. And I think Darling Nelly Gray is about a slave who has been sold. mg


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Gary T
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 01:48 AM

The one I know is "Hiring Fair." I couldn't find it in the DT or with a google search. The chorus starts out "And you're welcome with me Johnny..."

I can understand thinking of some hiring fair stories as "white slavery," but that's not what the term means. It has a quite specific definition--the practice of forcing women into prostitution, or the woman's state therein.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: jacko@nz
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 02:31 AM

My current hiring fair favourite is Copshawholm Fair


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Ringer
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 05:56 AM

I think you can hire a fair song for about twopence a day.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 07:52 AM

Hello All, Thank to all of you. Gary T , If paying some poor boy or girl, £6.00 for six months hard slogging isn`t a form of white slavery, then do as I have done, and talk to the poor unfortunates who had the bad luck to be carted off from home and finished up with a greedy, cruel old Farmer. Read Brother to the Ox, Paddy the COOP. Children of the Dead End [Patrick McGill] and you will be enlightened. Slan and thanks to all. Ar Mhacha.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Ringer
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 11:14 AM

Have there been hiring-fairs within living memory?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: MMario
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 11:24 AM

in the strict technical sense of the word, yes.

Leastwise about 25-30 years ago it was common for a number of corporations to show up at a college or university and pick and choose from among the applicants - and it was not uncommon for them to play one applicant off against another so the company would get the most for their money - these contracts were frequently for a number of years with no compete clauses...

tho' in comparision to what went on in previous centuries, probably "no."


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: IanC
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 11:46 AM

There have been real hiring fairs well within living memory.

Just before WW2, a friend of mine - now 85 - hired himself out at a hiring fair at Carlisle Market Cross. The usual contract was "a year and a day" including (both ends) the day of the fair. Full board was provided during the year and payment at the end of the contract. The employee then went back to the fair, got drunk and hired-on again.

Around the turn of the century, quite a few agricultural labourers from East Anglia were hiring on in Yorkshire as things were bad at home, and the pay was better there. That reminds me of one of the hiring fair songs "Yaddie Hughes".

Cheers!
Ian


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 02 Jul 01 - 01:21 PM

Hello Bald Eagle, Hiring Fairs had their day at the beginning of World WAR 2. Factories needed all available labour for the war effort. Farmers had to pay a living wage and it was goodbye to slave labour. Slan Ard Mhacha.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: IanC
Date: 03 Jul 01 - 04:31 AM

Ard

Take it from me, what you're saying about hiring fairs and wages is not universally accurate. I have spoken at some length to both hirers-on and farmers in various parts of England and many of them (on both sides) regarded it as a fair system. In some cases, where there was a surplus or shortage of labour, it probably wasn't so easy but I think you're promulgating a biased story.

What I said about East Anglian labourers is a case in point. They went from somewhere where hiring fairs had mostly been long dead to hire on at fairs because the conditions for them were better.

Cheers!
Ian


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: sian, west wales
Date: 03 Jul 01 - 07:57 AM

Slightly off topic but ...

Plowing with oxen survived in Wales after disappearing (pretty much) in England. Because the Welsh believed that the ox was an intelligent, more than slightly mystical, animal, they believed that it only worked when happy, and kept amused. So to plough you needed both a ploughman and a lad. The lad's sole duty was to walk backwards in front of the oxen the whole time of ploughing and sing to it clever verses - of riddles, or love, quite often. Not silly verses, as this was an insult to the animals' intelligence.

So ... quite often at hiring fairs, farmers would audition likely lads as it was important for them to have both a good voice AND a large repetoire of songs (to avoid repetition).

Always thought that was kinda interesting ...

sian


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Wolfgang
Date: 03 Jul 01 - 08:11 AM

Hamiltonsbawn hiring fair (from the DT)

Attention: Do not use the phrase 'hiring fair' in the DT search it will find nothing. For reasons unknown the word 'fair' is not allowed. In the Digitrad and Forum search this phrase works fine.

Wolfgang


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 03 Jul 01 - 11:40 AM

Hello Ian, Take it from me, any old timers I spoke to here in the north of Ireland gave me a different story from yours. You aren`t a VFarmer by any chance. The stories I have read about hired hands even from England gives a picture of a life of misery with the Farmers. Get your hands on a book about a hired hand on a farm in Yorkshire entitled "Brother to the Ox". there are irish books aplenty about this. Slan Ared Mhacha.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: IanC
Date: 03 Jul 01 - 11:59 AM

Ard

I'm the son and grandson of East Anglian farm labourers. My grandfather was evicted more than once and was once burned out of his tied cottage. I know what I'm talking about, I don't need to read no books about it.

Ian


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 03 Jul 01 - 01:19 PM

Hello Ian, And I also worked for the miserable gits, so what are you trying to say that your jolly Old farmer gave you a fair crack of the whip, sure did across the back. Slan Ard Mhacha.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 03 Jul 01 - 02:07 PM

Hello Wolfgang, Thanks for your help, I have that one, I live about nine miles from Hamiltonsbawn. Slan Ard Mhacha.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 03 Jul 01 - 02:25 PM

Hello John Nolan, The song you mentioned "Tattie Jock" sounds good, any ideas on locating it. and thanks for the other info. Slan Ard Mhacha.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: nutty
Date: 03 Jul 01 - 05:23 PM

If it's white slavery you are interested in then "wife selling " should be included.
These are selection of broadsides from the Bodleian Library on the subject - they are image files so may take a while to load

THE WEDDING

POOR WILL PUTTY

THE CARPENTER'S WIFE>

SALE OF A WIFE

JOHN HOBBS


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: IanC
Date: 04 Jul 01 - 04:09 AM

Ard

No, what I'm saying is that things aren't all universally the same. My father in law was a tenant farmer on 100 acres of Yorkshire hill farm, with one farm man in the cottage next door. Two years in three he did marginally better than the farm man, the other year far worse.

Cheers!
Ian


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Aidan Crossey
Date: 04 Jul 01 - 04:44 AM

Ard mhacha ...

The missus tells me a parcel's arrived wi' a Lurgan postmark on it. Good man. I'll have a look this evening.

Now ... back on thread ... what about Darby O'Leary. Although the phrase hiring fair is never mentioned explicitly, I think it's pretty clear that he's not there entirely of his own volition.

The lyrics are here


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 04 Jul 01 - 05:01 AM

Derrymacash, Thanks for Darby O`leary, I see by the lyrics another oul hand that had a Butlins holiday with the tax dodgers [farmers] Slan Ard Mhacha.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: cetmst
Date: 04 Jul 01 - 07:24 AM

Walk down the streets of many American cities in the early morning and see lines of men at the "employment office" waiting for day labor jobs, mostly consruction, some farming. There are many songs about migrant workers in the US west including Woody Guthrie's "Deportees" and "Pastures of Plenty" and a horror song whose title I can't recall about migrant workers who died when their bus broke down in the desert heat. There are variants of "Buffalo Skinners", men hired to hunt buffalo and then abandoned without wages when the hunt was over. Many collections of logging songs tell of unfair hiring and inadequate wages. Appalachian coal mining songs depict near slavery conditions, see Merle Travis' "Dark As a Dungeon" and "Sixteen Tons". "The Black Fly" by Wade Hemsworth is a delightful song about dam construction in Canada. There are songs about pressmen throughout England and Scotland such as "Weary Cutters". THe modern practice of immigrant ships that promise relocation and jobs is a vicious variant of the hiring fair. The list is depressingly long.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Aidan Crossey
Date: 04 Jul 01 - 07:32 AM

Nice point, cetmst.

I was about to add something similar myself about the lines of Irish men waiting in Cricklewood or outside Camden Town tube station in London to get a day's unregulated labour on building sites. Men who've lived this day-to-day working life for years. While the wages might not be quite as scandalous as those Ard Mhacha was quoting as having been the going rate in the hiring fair days, I fear that these poor sods are milked while still big and strong and then left to fend for themselves when their strength and vigour goes.

So if the hiring fairs don't survive in name anymore, there are examples not too far from the end of our noses where their modern-day variants thrive.

Those of us who draw a regular wage, have a roof over our heads and are able to think about saving for a rainy day - or for a comfortable retirement, etc. - ought to be thankful!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: GOD MADE DRINK (O'Neill, Crossey)
From: Aidan Crossey
Date: 04 Jul 01 - 07:53 AM

In fact ...

A mate of mine - Lorcan O'Neill, as fine a guitar player as you're ever likely to meet - once wrote a song "God Made Drink ..." which I only ever learned the chorus of.

When we met up I pressed him for more - all I ever got from him was the first few lines of the first verse. Eventually I got impatient and wrote a version msyelf - retaining Lorcan's first few lines of the first verse and his chorus but completing the first verse and adding two more ... here it is for what it's worth.

God Made Drink ...
Me name is Sean McGeown
I came over on me own
Lured by talk of aisy wages
Searched the bars and situation vacant pages
But all I found in London Town for ages
Was hostels, dole and whiskey binge rampages
But I got a start in time
Digging out a new tube line
Mondays always saw me shattered
All weekend long I'd been out on the blatter
But as long as I was coining what's the matter?
Aisy rake it in and aisy scattered
(cos)
Chorus
God made drink so the Irish wouldn't rule
The world or even their own parish
I think that he was laughing on the day he made that brew
Saying "Good luck and fuck the Irish"

And as the years rolled round
I worked with every gang in London Town
Digging trenches and foundations
Office blocks, suburban railway stations
I lost some gravy buildin' up this nation
But the porter helped to cure me dehydration
And now me strength has gone
I once bate Elephant John
But me muscles now are withered
And the whiskey's ate away me liver
Of me former self, sure now I'm just a sliver
An old man, which a shuffle and a quiver
(And)
Chorus

God rest me uncle Sean
We'll miss him now he's gone
All those songs down in the boozer
A red-faced, hairy-knuckled bruiser
Some say the drink made him a loser
But did a little deeper for the truth, sir
Cos me name is Sean McGeown
I'm the pride of the Goldhawk Road
I'm the first of the second generation
A Paddy brought up in the English nation
And Uncle Sean supplied me education
He's me mentor and me well of inspiration
(He told me)

Chorus

Tune and lyrics Copyright Lorcan O'Neill (additional lyrics by Aidan Crossey)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 04 Jul 01 - 09:20 AM

derrymacash, Its a hard oul road, but in my ten years in England I found after the first years hard labour, you spent the next nine avoiding it.I always said Woody Guthrie should have been canonised. St Woody of the Workers. Slan Ard MhACHA.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: TATTIE JOCK
From: John Nolan
Date: 04 Jul 01 - 10:02 AM

ard mhacha: A version of Tattie Jock is in the archives, but the one below has two or three more verses giving a (a) a broader glimpse of farm life and (b) a kinder portrait of the farmer vis-a-vis his hired workers, and thus a more savage view of systematic working class oppression through the court system in the 1800s.

TATTIE JOCK

Well, ye a' hae heard o' Tattle Jock,
Likewise o' Mutton Peggie.
They had a fairmie ower in Fife.
An' the name o' it was Craigie.

Cho: Hye riddle die, roo rum dir doe,
Hye riddle die, roo rum day.

There was ten pair upon that place,
Likewise ten able men,
It's five they gave for tae kinnle the fire,
And the ither five oot tae scran.

Three months we served with Tattle Jock
And weel we did agree.
Till we found oot that the tattie shed
Could be opened with the bothy key.

We a' went intae the tattle shed,
Our bags were hardly full,
When Tattle Jock in ahint the door
Cried, "Aye, ma lads stand still."

Oh, the first he got was Willie Marr,
The next was Sandy Doo,
There was Jimmy Grey and Wull Moncur
And Jimmy Pethrie flew.

Next day some o' us were drivin' dung,
An' some were at the mill;
The foreman he was at the ploo'
Upon Pitlootie Hill.

They sent for ten big polismen
But nine there only cam',
It dinged them for tae lift us that night,
Us bein' sic able men.

Noo, the hinmaist lad was the wisest een,
The best lad o' us a'.
He jined a man o' war at Leith;
So he didnae need tae stand the law.

When we were getting' oor sentence read
We all stood roon' and roon'
But when we heard o' the fourteen years
Oor tears cam' tricklin' doon.

When Tattie Jock heard tell o' this,
He cried and grat fu' sore;
A thousand guineas he would pay,
If that would ease the score.

A bag o gold he did produce,
Tae pey it there an' then,
But the lawyer only told him money
Wouldna clear his men.

An' when they mairched us up through Perth,
We heard the news boy say,
"It's hard tae see sic able men
Rade aff tae Botany Bay."

When we arrive in Botany Bay
Some letters we will send, Tae tell oor friends o' the hardship we
Endure in a foreign land.

As published in The Scottish Folksinger (1973) by Norman Buchan and Peter Hall

From the singing of Archie Webster of Strathkinness. The song is also included in Fife Songs and Ballads, edited by P. Shepherd.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 04 Jul 01 - 11:22 AM

John, Thanks its a cracker,no problem with the dialect, how do our US friends cope. Slan Ard Mhacha.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: pavane
Date: 04 Jul 01 - 11:42 AM

Bodleian ballads library has lots of hiring fair songs - but not with tunes


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Aidan Crossey
Date: 04 Jul 01 - 11:54 AM

This is a great resource ... thanks!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 04 Jul 01 - 01:45 PM

Pavane, Many thanks, I`m in the garden of Eden, hope I don`t see oul Eve. Slan Ard Mhacha.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: GUEST,Mac Tattie
Date: 04 Jul 01 - 02:40 PM

The song Tattie Jock was written based on a true story. Pete Shepheard, editor of Fife songs and Ballads, has spent much time retracing much of the background to this and many other songs.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: John Nolan
Date: 04 Jul 01 - 04:27 PM

Mac Tattie: Is the Fife Songs and Ballads book still available, and if so, from whom?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: GUEST,Mac Tattie
Date: 04 Jul 01 - 06:11 PM

Hi John Nolan, I don't know, try asking Pete Shepheard on music@springthyme.co.uk Cheers.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: pavane
Date: 05 Jul 01 - 11:04 AM

I still haven't got the hang of the indexes at the Bodleian Ballad library though. If I put 'hiring fair' in the search box, and select index1 or 2, I get nothing at all, but if I just enter Hiring, I get several hits, many which include the phrase 'hiring fair'. Searching on index 3, subject, I get many more hits again. Similarly, New song gets no hits, but song gets lots which include the phrase 'new song'. Strange. Also you can have fun with alternative spellings, such as Monk's march and Moncks march (General Monck was his name).


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: IanC
Date: 05 Jul 01 - 11:08 AM

Pavane

The Bodleian search seems to only deal wit 1 word at a time. Put your 2 words in 2 separate boxes and it works OK. Don't ask me why!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: pavane
Date: 05 Jul 01 - 11:19 AM

I only found this library recently, from another posting on Mudcat, and I have already found the following:
What appears to be the (long lost?) song Beaux of London City, could be linked to the Adderbury Morris dance of the same name (The words fit the tune)
Song Jockey to the Fair, which fits the Morris Dance music (short version)
Song 'Mr Walker the twopenny postman', which seems to be related to tune 'walk of the twopenny postman' also linked to Morris?
A song called Abraham Brown the Sailor, which seems to be an early version of Barnacle Bill
The Beautiful Muff - bawdy song, complete with name of tune, which I have also tracked down
The Infallible Doctor, with words similar to those used by the (Quack) doctor in many mummers' plays

I don't know how much of this has already been recorded, but it is certainly a fascinating site


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: pavane
Date: 05 Jul 01 - 11:20 AM

Thanks for the hint, IanC, I will try it now!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: nutty
Date: 05 Jul 01 - 01:29 PM

I use the browse index which is a lot simpler than the search but just as effective.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: MMario
Date: 05 Jul 01 - 02:12 PM

pavane - you going to share the tune for beautiful muff? Hmmm?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 05 Jul 01 - 02:27 PM

When I put this request in for Hiring Fair Songs I never envisaged the amount of assistance I would have received, to all of you thanks and in the language of the gael Slan agus Beannacht [Health and Blessings], great stuff . Ard Mhacha.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 05 Jul 01 - 02:52 PM

I know the answer, MMario, but I'll let Pavane tell you.  I too largely gave up on the search facility at the Bodleian a year or so back, as it depends on keywords which are not always consistent or fully descriptive.  Like Nutty, I find the browse facility a lot quicker in most cases.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: pavane
Date: 05 Jul 01 - 03:01 PM

MMario, The Beautiful Muff goes to the tune of Dumble Dum Deary, otherwise known as Richard of Taunton Dean. It is here somewhere as a MIDI, but I have to be quick so I can't give you a link yet. It sounds very familiar, but I can't remember what song I have heard it used for.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: MMario
Date: 05 Jul 01 - 03:04 PM

grazie - that should be enough for me to track down.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: pavane
Date: 05 Jul 01 - 03:11 PM

Oh all right, here's a link Richard of Taunton Dean"


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: MMario
Date: 05 Jul 01 - 03:44 PM

thanks! - I would have been back sooner to tell you I had found it - but my computer crashed.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: pavane
Date: 05 Jul 01 - 04:58 PM

I can't remember the name of the song it reminded me of, but it ended 'Who once came a-courting, who once came a-courting my father's grey mare' It also has some resemblence to the tune Martin Carthy used for 'Three Cripples from London'. And my machine crashed when I tried to send this message, so I had to type it all again. :-(


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: pavane
Date: 05 Jul 01 - 06:47 PM

It's in the database as (would you believe) The Grey Mare, but with a different tune.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Matthew Edwards
Date: 05 Jul 01 - 07:57 PM

Some additional songs which are, or have been, featured on generally available recordings:

The Cranbally Farmer sung by Tom Lenihan
The Mains O' Fogieloan sung by John MacDonald
Aul Jockey Bruce o' the Fornet sung by Davie Stewart
Come to the Hiring sung by Jamesy McCarthy

I hope I will be forgiven if I don't post any lyrics on this occasion, as it is getting late at night (here in the UK at any rate), and as I have a busy weekend ahead I may not be able to do so until early next week. Perhaps someone else will manage to add the texts by then.
In the meantime I am surprised there has not been a bigger response from Australia: I seem to recall that the practice of seasonal hiring was widespread there.
Regarding living memories of hiring fairs Colm Toibin describes how he was suprised to encounter recent tales (i.e. about 30-40 years old) of hiring fairs when he was researching his 1987 book Bad Blood .Initially he couldn't find anybody who was willing to talk of their experiences, as it seemed to be a topic of shame and embarrassment for those who had been hired labourers. Eventually he tracked down an elderly lady who was willing to recall being hired at Strabane Fair.Young girls and boys, usually from Catholic families, would hire out for six months to Protestant farmers from May to November.The work was hard, and she would be paid £5 or £6 at the end. She would count the days and the journey back "was like heaven", but as her family had no money she would have go and stand at the hiring cross again in the bitter cold of November."It was a cruel country." she recalled.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 06 Jul 01 - 06:12 AM

Matthew Edwards, The old lady you refer to was a Mrs Rose McCullagh from around Plumbridge in Co Tyrone. The programme she took part in was a thrre part series on The Hiring Fairs and was broadcast on RTE Radio about 15 years ago, the producer and the person who did the interviews was a Professor O Cathain from Derry. The programme also delved into Donegal writer Patrick McGills early life as a hired hand in Co Tyrone. I have the recordings if you are interested, get in touch Slan Ard Mhacha.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 06 Jul 01 - 10:17 AM

Ian C, No problem, leave it to next week, I wil send it on, Slan Ard Mhacha.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: GUEST,Conán
Date: 06 Jul 01 - 09:58 PM

Bí cúramach, a Ard Mhacha
Prof. Ó Catháin hails - not from Derry - but from West Tyrone - Drumqin, if I'm not mistaken.
Conán


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Nerd
Date: 07 Jul 01 - 05:48 AM

A couple more:

The salt, an Irish song based at the Ballynaskreen Horse Fair about a fellow who hires with a farmer who turns out to be insane,

and

Seton's Lassie, a Bothy Ballad about a lad who grows up to marry the farmer's daughter. There's a very sad description of his first night as a "slave." But he bounces back fast.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 07 Jul 01 - 07:17 AM

Conan, Sorry, you are right Conan, and a good man for all that. Slan Ard Mhacha.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: GUEST,IanC at British Library
Date: 07 Jul 01 - 07:45 AM

Ard

Cheers! Ian


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: AN SPEALADÓIR
From: Brían
Date: 08 Jul 01 - 07:49 AM

AN SPEALADÓIR

Is spealadóir beag sásta mé anall as an Ghréig
Bíonn mo speal crochta liom is faobhar uirthi chun féir;
Nuair a ligim ar an talamh í, tógann mná na bhfearaibh í
Mar i ndúil go mbeinn sa bhaile agaibh am bhaint an fhéir

Thiar i gContdae Shligigh atá mo muintir fhéin,
Mo mhamaí is mo dheadí is mo chairde uilig go léir
Tá óir buí go pras acu is níl dúil ar bith sa spras acu
Is pósfaidh mise an spealadóir, is é bhainfeadh an féar.

In iochtar an bhaile seo, tá an pháirc fhada réidh
Gan tor gan tom gan foscadh ach a haghaidh ar anró an tsaoil
Tá giota beag le bearradh di is ní mó ná chuir sí i dtalamh mé
Mar i ndúil go mbeinn sa bhaile agaibh in am bhaint an fhéir

a Chailíní is a bhuachaillí nach trua libh mo scéal?
Tá mise a gabháilna farraige is gan dúil liom go héag
Abraigí sibhse an paidrín gach oích ag dul chun na leapa daoibh
Le mise bheith sa bhaile agaibh in am bhaint an fhéir

From the singing of Róise Bean Mhic Ghrianna(Róise na nAmhrán) SONGS OF A DONEGAL WOMAN.The tune is "THE CUCKOO'S NEST". Altan does a fine version of this on their 1st album.

No hiring fair is mentioned, but it is certainly implied in the song.

Beidh mé ag caint leat aríst,
Brían.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Susanne (skw)
Date: 09 Jul 01 - 08:23 PM

'Seton's Lassie' was written by the late Davy Steele.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: AUL' JOCKEY BRUCE O' THE FORNET
From: Matthew Edwards
Date: 12 Jul 01 - 08:29 PM

Here's a song I mentioned earlier:


Aul' Jockey Bruce o' the Fornet

At Martinmas time when I gaed to the fair,
To view the young lassies and to get the fresh air,
And I fee'd wi' a mannie to work a third pair,
It was aul' Jockey Bruce o' the Fornet.

On a Sunday mornin' he taunted an' teased,
Cam oot o' the stable wi' a flagon o' grease,
Rubbed the horse weel doon frae the queets to the knees
For they're a' cripple nags at the Fornet.

The sun it cam oot,it had melted the grease,
An' oot frae the hive cam a hale swairm o' bees,
But I says to mysel':It's a plague o' the fleas,
Cam doon wi' the lads o' the Fornet.

Noo oor foreman chiel he cam frae Balquhain,
He eenst was a navvie,and wrocht on the line,
He feeds his horse weel but he hangs in the twine,
For the wark's aye ahind at the Fornet.

Here's tae oor second,he's a strappin' young chiel,
Tae dae his wark,it sets him right weel,
He wisna lang hame,he thocht he would heel,
An' he never looked back tae the Fornet.

A loon he was fee'd tae advance an' retire,
Atween the neep-park an' the aul' coo-byre,
But he wisna lang hame,he seemed soon to tire
O' aul' Jockey Bruce o' the Fornet.

Here's to oor third, a rantin' tae reel,
A bit of a poem an' a half of a fule,
An' the lassies a' roond,they like him sae weel,
If he'll sing: Win Awa Wi' The Fornet.

We aye hae a baillie, he cam frae Kinnaird,
A wee little mannie, some scairt o' a beard,
For courtin' the lassies, he'd ain be prepared,
Than for sortin' his stots at the Fornet.

We hae a bit dochter, the flooer o' the glen,
She plays the pianna, an' whiles wi' the men,
An' rins in the close, to get keppit again,
Wi' the plooman lads in the Fornet.

At the kirk on a Sunday, she wears a lang veil,
A yaird o' her dress ahind her did trail,
Her hair is tied up like my horse's tail,
For tae charm a' the lads o' the Fornet.

O the hairst being back,an' the weather awfu' bad,
He turns us a' oot tae the pick an' the spad,
He tore off his jacket, the aul' man he gaed mad,
An' he danced an' he raved at the Fornet.

Sung by Davie Stewart in Dundee in 1956, and recorded by Peter Kennedy. Issued on Saydisc cassette CSDL407 Songs of the Travelling People

It is a slightly inconsequential song, but very attractively sung by Davie Stewart. It is typical of many workplace songs in describing the characters of each of the hired hands. Creating such a song, and singing it afterwards, would surely have been great fun in the bothies, at the end of a very hard day's labour.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: AN SPEALADÓIR translation
From: Brían
Date: 12 Jul 01 - 10:11 PM

Here's the translation of AN SPEALADÓIR:

I am a happy little mower over from Greece
I keep my scythe along with me ready for the hay
When I lay it on the ground the men's women take it from me
In hopes that I'll be home with you at haymaking time.

My own people are over in County Sligo
My Mammy and daddy and all my friends.
They have plenty of yellow gold, and do not like brass
And I will marry the mower, 'tis he would cut the hay.

At the bottom of the townland there is a long, level field
Without a shrub, without a bush, without a shelter and it faces the hardship of life.
There is a little bit to cut from it, and it nearly put me under the sod
In hopes that I'll be home with you at haymaking time.

Girls and boys, isn't my story a pity
I am going over the ocean, without a hope 'til I die
Say a little prayer each night when you go to bed
That I will be home with you at haymaking time.

Brían.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Matthew Edwards
Date: 16 Jul 01 - 07:06 PM

Brian that's a lovely song. Where did you get the last verse? My copy of Roise na nAmhran only gives three verses. Anyway thanks for reminding us of her. I don't know if this has been told before on the Forum, but even if it has the story will bear a little repetition.These were recordings of a great Donegal singer made in 1953 but at some point some nameless official thought the bulky tapes took up too much room and threw them on a dump. Proinsias o Conluain found them there, somewhat the worse for wear, and it is thanks to him that these priceless recordings of Gaelic singing are still available.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Brían
Date: 16 Jul 01 - 10:00 PM

Those recordings have been made into an RTE CD. Sean Ó heochaidh collected the last verse from Róise later. I picked them up at a C.C.E. concert. There's a little book with additional lyrics and the whole story in it. Even at her advanced age her singing was mesmerising. I would love to get the book on her life, which I had in my hand at a gaeltacht week, but someone had all ready bought it.

Slán go fóill,
Brían.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Wolfgang
Date: 15 Aug 01 - 12:04 PM

A late contribution, but I only listened to the CD last week for the first time:

The CD 'Come all my lads that follow the plough' from TOPICs 20 volume series 'Voice of the people' has many hiring fair songs complete with lyrics:

Barnyards of Delgarty
Copshawholm Fair
Cranbally farmer
Mains O' Fogieloan
Nicky Tams
Rocks of Bawn
Tarves Rent

Most of them have been mentioned above, but it is the best collection of this type of songs one a single CD I know.

Wolfgang


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 15 Aug 01 - 02:40 PM

Thanks Wolfgang, Some good songs in that lot,I have various groups singing them, Clancy Brothers, and Steeleye Span. Slan Ard Mhacha.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: GUEST,Annraoi
Date: 15 Aug 01 - 07:23 PM

a Bhriain,
Since there is no mention of any hiring practices in "an Spealadóir" might it not be possible that what is being hinted at is the Reaper's legendary sexual prowess? It takes but little imagination to read btween the lines. I offer this as a very possible alternative to "hiring"
Also, the same prowess in Cupid's arena was frequently believed to belong to the Ploughman - again for very obvious reasons.
Annraoi
P.S. There is an Irish idiom "ag déanamh fómhair" = making love. Literally "making the harvest." The connection seems an obvious one to me.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: GUEST,folktrax.org
Date: 16 Aug 01 - 06:58 AM

HIREMAN CHIEL, THE - "There was a knight and a baron bright" - his son, after being well schooled and trained at the plough, goes off to be hired and what follows is a complex story of entangled lovers – ROUD#5624 - BUCHAN ABSNS 1875 2 p104-12 "The Baron turned Ploughman" - GREIG-DUNCAN 5 1995 #1055 pp518-532 13var 58v/7m – ORD BS&B pp480-6

HIRING see also FAIRS (also called "Mops" and "Statutes") - BARGAIN WITH ME/ MAGHERAFELT/ TAM BOY) – BARNYARDS O DELGATY - BOGIE'S BONNY BELLE - COME TO THE HIRING – COPSHAWHOLME - COUNTRY STATUTES – CRANBALLY FARMER - DAVIE HUNTER FEEIN' TIME – JOCKEY BRUCE O THE FORNET - MAINS O FOGGIELOAN - MARLIN FAIR - MUCKLE FRIDAY FAIR – NICKY TAMS – ROCKS O BAWN – TARVES RANT -- BBC LP 37157 Hiring Fairs at turn of century: interviews & music (not ABR) - FREE REED FRR-001 Seamus ENNIS Story - FRR- 003 Eddie BUTCHER Derry - FOLKTRAX FTX-019 Dicky LASHBROOK "Bargain with me"/ FTX-059 Talk about hiring: Jimmy Mc BEATH/ FTX-066 John STRACHAN Aberdeensh/ FTX-134 Bertha BROWN "Magherafelt Hiring Fair Song"/ FTX-175 John CORRY/ FTX-183 Duncan Mc PHEE Song: "Tam Buie"

HIRING DAY, THE - to tune of "The Spanish Lady"-- Michael GALLAGHER rec by Peter Kennedy, Belleek, Co Fermanagh 7/7/52 HIRING FAIR, THE - "From Omagh Town unto Strabane" - Servant goes into alehouse to meet a girl and marry her - tune: As I walked through Dublin City or THE SPANISH LADY - ROUD#2905 - DUNCAN W357/ M1239 "The Feeing Times" - MORTON FSU 1970 #24 pp38-40 Biddy Maguire, Follom, Co Fermanagh - MORTON CDGD 1973 p34 "Strabane Hiring Fair" - TOCHER 30 (1979) p403 "Aberfeldy Fair" rec by Hamish Henderson from Donald MacMartin, Coldingham Berwicksh -- Michael GALLAGHER rec by Peter Kennedy, Belleek, Co Fermanagh 20/7/52: 7"RTR-0554/ FOLKTRAX 163 - Biddy MAGUIRE rec by Robin Morton, Co Fermanagh: MERCIER IRL-12 1970 - Eddie BUTCHER, rec by Robin Morton, Magilligan, Co Derry: FREE REED FRR-003 1976 "I once was a daysman"

HIRING FAIR AT HAMILTONSBAWN, THE - "Come all ye lads and lassies and listen unto me" - "man called Tom McCann" - ROUD#2890 - MORTON FSSU 1970 pp36-38 Bob Wallace, Ballylisk, Co Armagh

HIRING FAIR AT KELSO - see VICTORIA WALTZ


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 16 Aug 01 - 01:07 PM

Hello Guest Folktrax, Any more on that Marlin Fair song. Slan ARD Mhacha.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: THE HIRING FAIRS OF ULSTER (O'Lochlainn)
From: Big Tim
Date: 16 Aug 01 - 05:42 PM

Ard, you're a card! How about this one from our old friend O'Lochlainn, THE HIRING FAIRS OF ULSTER, first verse,

The ploughboy with a steady hand,
He will engage to plough the land,
The dairymaid is well prepared, to mind her milk and dairy,
The cowboy with a staff or stave,
Will mind his cows by brook or brae,
The shoe boy too is wanted there to polish boots for ladies...

OK another verse,

The servants' wages now should rise,
As beef and butter got so high,
There’s ten eggs sold at pence a piece, turkey eggs three ha'pence,
The paper states the London price,
Of wheat and oats and bacon dry,
And Gladstone seeking tenant right, it's now in contemplation.

Slan, BT.

HTML line breaks added --JoeClone, 1-Dec-01.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Matthew Edwards
Date: 16 Aug 01 - 07:00 PM

Nice to have this thread refreshed. I'd agree with Wolgang that the Topic CD Come all my lads that follow the plough TSCD655 is a great resource. There is another in the same series There is a man upon the farm TSCD670 which has some relevant songs (besides having a great selection of songs in the first place):
Seán Mac Donnchaadha An Spailpín Fánach
Jamesy McCarthy Come To The Hiring

Another recording well worth listening to is from the School of Scottish Studies Bothy Ballads issued on Greentrax CDTRAX 9001, with a well researched booklet written by Hamis Henderson.
With regard to the list posted by GUEST above,apparently from Folktracks; this is a very valuable resource. Peter Kennedy who operates Folktracks collected a great number of songs in Great Britain and Ireland in the 1950's, many of which appeared on the seminal Caedmon/Folk Songs of Britain LPs in the 1960's. Peter and the team who worked with him deserve our undying respect for their efforts.
BUT, and it is with some distress that I add this; a number of people whose opinions I trust have expressed concern that Peter Kennedy has failed to acknowledge the singers and collectors who gave their material to him. Tapes have apparently been issued without the consent of those who sang or played,or collected, and I understand that no royalties have been paid in some cases. Personally I do not know all the in and outs of this issue, but I am not willing to support Folktracks until I have a clearer explanation.
I hope that this is a fair account; I would be happy if the Folktracks archive could be made available on terms which are fair to those singers, players, and collectors who created it,


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 17 Aug 01 - 01:22 PM

To all of you good people my grateful thanks, when I posted this thread I never imagined the amount of information I would receive. Annraoi you dirty muckle brute, wading through the cowpats on a respectable site. Slan Ard Mhacha.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: COME ALL YE JOLLY PLOUGHMAN LADS
From: IanC
Date: 11 Sep 01 - 04:32 AM

I'm reviving this thread as I've got a couple of songs for my old friend Ard Mhacha. I was in Dumfries last week, and I bought, in a secondhand bookshop, a copy of:

KERR CAMERON, DAVID "The Ballad and The Plough: A Folk History of The Scottish Farmtouns" (London, Gollancz, 1987).

Here's two untitled bothy ballads from the book.

"There was one man in particular to avoid in Turriff's Porter Fair." (pp 88-90)

    Come all ye jolly ploughman lads,
    I pray you, have a care,
    Beware o' going to Swaggers,
    For he'll be in Porter Fair

    He'll be aye lauch-lauchin',
    He'll aye be lauchin' there;
    And he'll hae on the blithest face
    In a' Porter Fair.

    Wi' his fine horse and harness,
    Sae well he'll gar ye true,
    But when ye come to Auchterless,
    Sae sair's he'll gar ye rue.

    He'll tell ye o' some plooin' match
    That isna far awa';
    And gin ye clean yer harness richt,
    Ye're sure to beat them a'.

    For the tackle's gained the prize afore
    At every country show;
    And gin that ye lat it fa' back,
    Ye'll be thocht little o'.

    A pair o' blues that lead the van
    Sae nimbly as they go;
    A pair o' broons that follow them,
    That never yet said no.

    A wee bit shaltie ca's the neeps,
    And, oh, but it is sma';
    But Swaggers he'll declare to you
    It's stronger than them a'.

    But he'll aye be fret-frettin',
    He'll aye be frettin' there;
    And he'll gie ye regulations
    That are worn a' threadbare.

    And Swaggers in the harvest time,
    He's got too much to do
    For the twa-three jovial laddies
    That ca's his cairt and ploo.

    Sae he'll gang on some twenty miles,
    Faur people disna him ken,
    And he'll engage some harvest hands
    And bring them far frae hame.

    He'll say unto the foreman chiel,
    "Keep aye the steady grind,
    And dinna lat the orra lads
    Fa' idle back behind.

    "For I pay ye a'guid wages,
    And sae ye maun get on,
    And gin ye are not able,
    There's another when ye're done."

    He'll say unto the girlies,
    As they are comin' back,
    "Come on, my girls, and hurry up,
    Gie them nae time to sharp."

    But noo the cuttin's ended,
    And we've begun to lead,
    And mony's the curious plan he tries
    For to come muckle speed.

    And noo the sheaves they are all in,
    And formed in the stack;
    And noo the windy days are come
    When we maun hunt the brock.

    Whe we maun hunt the brock, my boys,
    Wi' mony a fret and frown;
    And Swaggers cries, "Come on, my boys,
    It's like for to ding on."

    And when that we gang up the raips,
    He gets up wi' a bawl,
    Says, "Come on, my girls, ply in the twine,
    Ye're sure to beat them all."

    Now the harvest's ended,
    And a' thing is made snod;
    The harvest hands wi' bundles big
    They now must pad the road.

    They now must pad the road, my boys,
    Amang the frost and snaw;
    And they hae sworn a solemn oath,
    They'll ne'er come back ava.

    But Martinmas it has worn on,
    My fee's into my pouch;
    And sae merrily, merrily, I will sing,
    "I'm oot o' the tyrant's clutch."

    For he is the worst master
    That ever I did serve;
    And gin ye dinna me believe,
    Never mind ye this observe.

"Yet another ballad, from the same area, gives a reminder of the farmer's approach to a youngster [at his] first feeing fair." (pp 91-91).

    Twas in the merry month of May
    When flowers had clad the landscape gay,
    To Ellon fair I bent my way
    With hopes to find amusement.

    A scrankie chiel to me cam' near,
    And quickly he began to spier
    If I would for the neist half-year
    Engage to be his servant.

    "I'll need you as an orra loon;
    Four poun' ten I will lay down
    To you, when Martinmas comes roun'
    To close at our engagement.

    "Five shillings more will be your due,
    If you to me prove just and true;
    But that will be referred to you
    By my good will and pleasure."

    An' to a tent he then set sail,
    And bade me follow at his tail;
    And he called for a glass o' ale
    Therein to keep us sober.

    Said he, "A sixpence noo, my loon,
    I freely will to you lay down,
    Thrippence for ale I will pay soon,
    And thrippence buys my fairin'."

    When I went hame to my new place,
    And at the table showed my face,
    It's to the brose they said nae grace -
    The time was unco precious.

    Although our usage was but scant,
    Of wark we never kent the want;
    And aye to carry on the rant
    The farmer cried, "Come on, lads."

    An' when the hairst it did come roun',
    It's to a scythe I hid to boun';
    Likewise to draw the rake aroun',
    To keep the fields in order.

Cheers!
Ian


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 11 Sep 01 - 08:24 AM

IanC, Good on you. "Its to the brose they said nae grace the time was unco precious", Ian, I would say that the pair of hirelings hadn`t an unco precious time with their masters. Two good songs. Thanks Ard Mhacha.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: GUEST,Boab
Date: 12 Sep 01 - 02:13 AM

Has Brian McNeil's "Lads o' the Fair" [the "Trystin' Fair at Falkirk"] been mentioned?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: GUEST,dougboywonder
Date: 12 Sep 01 - 02:41 PM

I just found out that Fred Jordan became a farmer through being hired at a hiring fair. He undoubtably has a song about it.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: THE HIRING FAIR
From: weerover
Date: 14 Feb 03 - 09:22 AM

I found this in a splendid little volume of songs sung in Inishowen and remembered the thread:

THE HIRING FAIR

As I roved down through Antrim Town
Through Antrim town I took my way
Where all around the road was clad
With lads and bonnie lasses gay

Sure I espied one amongst them all
How lonely she walked by herself
For fear the rain would her gown stain
I shared with her my umbrell'

Says I, "My lass, how do you do?
Or have you travelled far?"
"For Antrim town, kind sir, I'm bound
You know it is the hiring day"

Says I, "My lass, will you accept
A glass of brandy, ale or wine?
We'll have a glass before we part
And we'll be in about hiring time"

She gave consent and in we went
Unto an alehouse by the way
Glass after glass did merrily pass
Till she forgot her hiring day

The clock struck three, she smiled at me
She says, "Young man the fault is thine
I'm here alone and I'm far from home
And besides , I missed my hiring fair"

"Oh never fret, my dearest dear
I don't intend to harm you
For marriage I intend to try
For baker lads they all prove true"

"Kind sir, to marry sure I am too young
Besides my ma has none but me
But I'll comply, I'll never deny
I'll marry before hired I'll be"

So we drank a round with mirth and fun
And we got married the very next day
And every now and then she would say
"I'm glad I missed the hiring day"

Note says the original song came from Scotland where it was called "My friends and I left sweet Milngavie" - Milngavie is a suburb of Glasgow and is pronounced Mill-guy (or to a Glaswegian Mull-guy)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: GUEST,stooriefit
Date: 14 Feb 03 - 10:14 AM

I think what you lot are calling "hiring fair songs" are called Bothy Ballads in Scotland ,Bogie,s Bonnie Belle,Drumdelgie,Nicky Tams being only a tiny fraction of them. They describe life on the farms and in the bothy,s (where the single farmworkers or "bothy loons"lived,Loon being the term for boy)of North East Scotland during the later half of the 19th century and up until the late 1970,s


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: weerover
Date: 14 Feb 03 - 10:41 AM

I should have added that there is a basic melody given for the last (Antrim) song. It is pretty much like the first line of "Banna Strand", repeated twice (is that a tautology?) for each verse.

wr


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Ballyholme
Date: 14 Feb 03 - 11:05 AM

Thanks for posting the Hiring Fair, Weerover. My late grandfather was one of those labourers who hired out at fairs in County Antrim. That would have been around 1900, I suspect.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: GUEST,Guest, Big Tim
Date: 15 Feb 03 - 10:56 AM

I got a good wee book on the (Irish) hiring fairs last time I was in Derry:

"Hiring fairs & farm workers in north-west Ireland" by Michael O'Hanlon. Guildhall Press[Derry?]. No date. ISBN 0 949451 20 6. Blurb by Dr Jonathan Bell, Ulster Folk and Transport Museum. Still in print I think.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: GUEST,Jim I
Date: 15 Feb 03 - 04:32 PM

Norman Kennedy (mentioned above) also did "Sleepytoon" about being hired at the fair and about how it was not as advertised.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 15 Feb 03 - 06:15 PM

Entering "Hiring Day" and "Hireing Day" in Search in the Bodleian Collection bring up three songs on the subject, with many duplicates of "The Hiring Day" (a copy of The Hireing Day is also in American Memory).
"The Hiring of the Servants" also concerns farm labor. In this song is the caution:

You farmers take warning I hear the people say
The servants of Ireland are all going away
They are going to America as you may understand
You must give them all wages or give up your land.

Interesting is "A New Song on the Hireing Fairs of Ulster," Ballads Catalogue 2806 C.7(32), which mentions "The cowboy with a staff or stave(?), Will mind the cows in brook or bray." If he emigrates he may become a "real" cowboy with horse and lariat.

"Country Statutes, or Hiring Day for Servants" (Ballads Catalogue Firth C 19(159) warns young girls of what may happen in 9 months time, as does "The Hiring Day."

As might be expected, these songs are Irish.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: Magherafelt Hiring Fair
From: GUEST,Philippa
Date: 04 Apr 03 - 06:57 AM

A widow goes to Magherafelt to hire a farm worker and ends up marrying one who drives a hard bargain!

1. "Would you hire with me, Tam Bo, Tam Bo?
Would you hire with me, my heart and my Jo?
Would you hire with me? say you and say I.
And what an's rantin' young widow am I.

(He says: "What wages, mistress?")

2. "Two pounds five," etc.

(He says: "Too little wages, mistress")

3. "Then two pounds ten," etc

(He says: "What diet, mistress?")

4. "Sowans and eels," etc. -
or
"Sowans, oats and water porridge"

(He says: "Too slippy diet, mistres?")

5. "Then potatoes and beef ...

(He says: "Where will I lie, mistress?")

6. "You'll lie in the loft,"

(He says: "The rats might eat me, mistress")

7. "You'll lie wi' the weans," ...

(He says: "The weans might kick me, mistress")

8. "Well then we'll get married," ...

When I saw this thread the first song that came into my mind was the Magherafelt May Fair (which has been recorded by Kevin Mitchell). The song above also bears Magherafelt in the title, but could belong almost anywhere. I see it has been mentioned in previous threads, and also as "Tam Boy". I copied these lyrics from a booklet by George Sweeny, "Hiring Fairs in Derry, Tyrone and Donegal". Derry: Guildhall Press,n.d. (circa 1985-86). I assume the "etc." menas that the ends of each line are repeated from verse to verse.

Tune to follow (eventually!)

The bibliography suggests a couple of other songs (which I might post later on if nobody else has done so):
"Hiring Fair (I Once Was a Daysman)" recording of Eddie Butcher on Free Reed Records
"The Hiring Fair at Hamiltons Bawn" published in Robin Morton Folk Songs Sung in Ulster. Cork: Mercier Press (is in DT)

and includes
Hugh Shields, Shamrock, Rose and Thistle: Folk Singing in North Derry. Belfast: Blackstaff, 1981

Jonathan Bell,"The Hiring Fairs" in Ulster Folkllife

Patrick Campbell, "Growing Up in Donegal" in Béalóideas, 1977


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: BOY BILLY
From: Dave Bryant
Date: 04 Apr 03 - 08:19 AM

I know a version of the previous song, probably more recent called Boy Billy. It's usually sung by a woman, with a man giving the answers.

Where be you going to my Boy, Billy Boy ?
Where be you going to Billy my Boy ?
Where be you going, for evermore here below,
Down in the meadow so gay, so gay.

Spoken: I be looking for Hire Missus.

Then fee to me oh my Boy, Billy Boy,
Then fee to me oh Billy my Boy,
Then fee to me, for evermore here below,
Down in the meadow so gay, so gay.

What will you pay me Missus ?

Three pound and ten........etc

Spoken: Where will I sleep, Missus ?

You can sleep with my groom.......

But what if he poke me Missus ?

Then sleep with my maid.........

For Shame, Missus !

Then sleep with me.........

Where be Master then, Missus ?

Oh Master be dead........

How long's he been dead then, Missus ?

Seven long (pause for effect) Days (or Hours if you want)........

What did he die of then, Missus ?

Oh he got wore out...... or I poisoned his pastie.........

I think I'll try elsewhere, Missus.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Jenny Islander
Date: 04 Apr 03 - 06:08 PM

Don't know any hiring fair songs per se, but there are some American tunes about hard work for lousy pay in a job one can't get out of.

There's "Diamond Joe," the one about the cowboy in the middle of nowhere whose boss is a scumbag he always seems to end up owing money to (in some versions the employees gang up and kill him so they can go home).

Two from Alaska are "Cannery Call" and "Workin' on the Slime Line." Pay's good at the cannery IF you work until you drop, then get up next morning and do the same, day in day out until the fish quit flooding in.

And I vaguely remember one called "The Next Market Day," about a girl who gets hired, all right, and goes home with gold in her pocket and an invitation to the next market day for the same. And all she had to do was sit down next to the nice man.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: ard mhacha
Date: 05 Apr 03 - 04:13 PM

"The next market day" is from the north of Ireland. Ard Mhacha.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Felipa
Date: 06 Apr 03 - 06:23 PM

you can find lyrics in Mudcat archives for the song I know as Next Market Day - A Maid Going to Comber

I wouldn't describe it the way Jenny does (though maybe she has a different set of lyrics) and the girl was going to the markets to buy "some hanks of fine yarn" and maybe to sell produce as well, but not to be hired for labour
///

what do you make of the number of songs relating the hiring fairs to courting rather than to hard work?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: GUEST,Boab
Date: 07 Apr 03 - 03:42 AM

Has Brian McNeil's "Trystin' Fair at Falkirk" had a mention--or does it not qualify as a 'hiring" song?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Wolfgang
Date: 07 Apr 03 - 08:04 AM

Has Brian McNeil's "Trystin' Fair at Falkirk" had a mention (Boab)

Yes, it had, by GUEST, Boab on 12 Sep 01 - 02:13 AM

Wolfgang


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: THE DAYSMAN
From: Felipa
Date: 07 Apr 03 - 04:40 PM

as sung by Eddie Butcher of Magilligan, Co Derry, Ireland on "Shamrock, Rose and Thistle", Leader Records, 1971 - from a recording of Eddie Butcher made by Hugh Shields in 1961. Eddie Butcher died in 1980.

THE DAYSMAN

I once was a daysman, I wrought cause anent
And a day in the week was kept for the rent,
We had a row o'er the hours, my blood being on fire,
So I picked up me bundle and I started to hire.

My mother with fleeching she near made me curse,
She says. "You'll go further and maybe fare worse;
I had a fiver saved up, it was hid in the byre,
So I broke up the bank and set off for to hire.

I stood at the fair from morning till eve:
Not a bid for my body did I e'er receive,
Says I to mysel' "It's a glass you require,
And stretch away home, for you're not going to hire."

I just had resolved when two lassies came by
And the one was well featured on me cast her eye;
Says she to the other, "Jean, here's our desire,
This man with the bundle; he's wanting to hire."

I knew by the joke and the way they were dressed
They were two servant* lasses, no more nor no less,
Though their impudent cheek I was forced to admire
The well featured one that had asked me to hire.

Ten pounds I was offered for to milk night and morn,
From all sorts of drink to be teetotal sworn,
On me nights with the neighbours to no call and pass
And then keep me han' off the young servant lass.

I was to be fed on the best of strong tea,
A duck egg to my breakfast, and that every day;
But in no case the servant no courting might stand
Says I, "On the mistress I'll first try my hand."

I threw my arm roun' her, she struggled and fought;
She seen that I had her, she knew she was caught.
So I split up the fiver and a drink I did share,
And I courted her home the night of the fair.

But still I'm a daysman and I work cause anent
And the day in the week's aye kep' for the rent,
But I have no fiver now to hide in the byre
For the bank is the wee lass that asked me to hire.

----

*Shields spells this word as 'sarvent'to approximate Butcher's pronounciation, & 'our' as 'oor'

fleeching means coaxing - "begging you to stay at hame," said Eddie Butcher

Shields notes: "Here from the nineteenth century is something we might call an Ulster bothy ballad. 'If you're working cause anent' said E[ddie],'you're feeding yourself and you're gettin the money but no meat ... you'd be paid so much a week.'. Hiring fairs were held twice yearly in May and November. Those held near the town of Magilligan were known by the picturesque names of the 'Rabble' (Coleraine) and the 'Gallop' (Limavady). They were good places to hear ballad singers. ...
... The only other version I have seen of it was a text printed in the Northern Constitution on 17 Nov. 1923.
The air is major, but with pentatonic traits."

Sheet music for the tune can be found in Hugh Shields, Shamrock, Rose and Thistle. Belfast: Blackstaff, 1981.

further notes from the book:
"... The first time E sang me this song he left out v. 5 with its explanation that the 'lassies' were two servants; without this verse the story is altered, with it a kind of rural irony adds relish to the good 'offer' made in v. 6-7. During Oct-Nov 1932, correspondence in the Northern Constitution revealed widespread discontent among farm workers hired for the season; boys were said to have emigrated to Canada because they were being offered £6-8 for six months (5 Nov.)"


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: THE SALT
From: Auxiris
Date: 08 Apr 03 - 03:16 AM

I see this is a recently revived thread and also that someone mentioned a song called "The Salt" earlier on. Here are the lyrics

Cheers, Aux

THE SALT
Kevin Conneff/Mrs. Chrissie Cunningham, Ardee, County Louth

Come all you young lads and young lassies, who hanker to work on the farm,
Now, be careful when choosing a master, it might serve for to keep youse from harm.

When I was a strapping young fellow, aged about seventeen
I hired myself to a farmer at the horse fair in Ballinascreen.

Now, his farm was way up the mountains and it all only heather and bog,
And me job, well, I got to look after his donkey, his goat and his dog

Now me, the farmer and his mother, we lived in a tumble-down shack,
His mother was well over ninety with the bones sticking out from her back.

It was only a tumble-down ruin, held up with ould yellow clay
The roof it was past all repairin', for the goat had the thatch et away.

His poor mother, she'd sleep by the fire, for the rain it came down on our bed--
And when I'd get up every morning, she'd be sittin' there noddin' her head.

The master was an awful ould skinflint, his heart was as hard as a stone--
He'd work me from daylight to darkness; in a month I was just skin and bone.

And he fed me on nothin' but piners? (Misunderstood word, sorry), he said they would make me a man;
Well, they damn near made me a dead one, eaten half raw off the pan!

Now, he had three ould hens and a rooster, one day they all died in the coop,
So he took them, he boiled them and salted them--we lived for a month on the soup!

Bad luck now, it never comes single, for the next day the nanny goat died:
So he skinned it, he boiled it and salted it--and made a bodhrán from the hide.

It was then poor ould Neddy, the donkey, he broke his hind leg and suffered great pain,
So he shot him, he skinned him and boiled him and called for the salt once again!

I thought, now, his mind was affected and myself I was going insane,
For when poor Fido died of distemper he called for the salt once again!

When I thought what happened, poor ould Fido, I couldn't sleep thinking that night;
And when I got up the next morning, I got a most horrible fright.

His poor mother was dead by the fire, when I ran for the door he cried "Halt!
Where are ye going so early? Come back here and help me to salt!"

Well, I went through the door like a rocket, says I, I'll get out in the fog,
I tripped in the yard with excitement and out he come runnin' with salt!

I took to me heels like a cowboy and over the hills like a hare,
I never stopped runnin' for a fortnight and I've never gone back to a fair!

Excess line breaks removed. --JoeClone, 12-Apr-03.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Tune Add: THE SALT
From: MMario
Date: 08 Apr 03 - 12:43 PM

There is another version of The Salt in the DT.

This is what I have as the tune:

X:2
T:The Salt
C:
I:abc2nwc
L:1/8
K:C
z6(d c)|A D (F/2 E/2) D G c (A G)|(E C-) C2E (F|
G) c A D3/2 (F E) D3/2|(E G) A d f2e d|c A2z(c d) c A|
C3/2 F/2 E3/2 D3/2|D3


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Tune Add: AN SPEALADOIR
From: MMario
Date: 08 Apr 03 - 01:38 PM

Felipa/Philippa sent me the tadpoles for An Spealadoir - from (I believe) Ceolta Gael 2

X:1
T:AN SPEALADOIR
I:abc2nwc
M:4/4
L:1/8
K:C
z6(G F)|E D E C c e d c|B G F E F A G F|
w:Mo_ lean le lua is m'a-tuir-se, isni fear do bhaint ar teas-can-na. D'fhag
E D E C B, C D E|F2D3/2 D/2 D2(G3/2 F/2)|
w:ceas-ta buar-tha m'aig-i-ne le treimh-se go tlath,Ach_
E D E C c e d c|B G F E F A G F|
w:eigse is suad an tsean-a-chais i ngei-bheann crua isin an-a-cra Go
E D E C B, C D F|E2C C C2 (3(GA)B|
w:treith i dtua-tha leath-an Luirc gan reim mar ba ghnath, is_ gach
c B c B c d e c|(d B) G G G2(G A)|
w:ion-na-bhi-le bor-ab-chu-thaigh trean_-chum-ais d'fhas, De_
_B A B A B c d B|c2G E F2(G F)|
w: bhrol-la-stoc na so-na-chon do phrea-mhaigh onspainn, go_
E D E C c e d c|B G F E F A G F|
w: cant-lach foan-lag eas-bui-theach, Fa ghall-smacht ghear ag
da-na-raibh an
E D E C B, C D F|E2C3/2 C/2 C2z2
w:cam-sprot claon do sheal-a-bhaigh A saor-bhail-te stait


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Tune Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Felipa
Date: 08 Apr 03 - 02:34 PM

The Spealadóir in Ceolta Gael is a different song than the one posted by Brían, as you can see from the words. The tune is very similar but not the same. See the Magpie's Nest in the DT (If I were a king ... I would lay you down to nest in the magpie's nest) for the tune.

The Salt is also sung to a well-known air, a jig used also for singing "The Devil and Bailiff McGlynn"

There's a song from John Maguire of Fermanagh about the Strabane Hiring Fair in a book compiled by Robin Morton ... see folktrax message above - and a forthcoming message from me.

MMario, don't forget the other two tunes I sent you for this thread. Many thanks.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Felipa
Date: 08 Apr 03 - 04:21 PM

I thought the previous message had failed to transmit. I wrote the following off-line. It's repetitive of the message before it, but there's also a bit of new info:

You'll notice that the words of the song given by Ó Baoill are completely different from those sung by Róise na nAmhrán and Máiread Ní Mhaonaigh and posted earlier by Brían. The tune is different also, though it is similar. See also the Magpie's Nest in the DT, with sound file.
It's not quite right to say that the song was on the first Altan album. Mairéad Ní Mhaonaigh sang An Spealadóir on the album "Ceol Aduaidh" which she made with other musicians such as Frankie Kennedy and Ciarán Curran, but they didn't record the album as an 'official' group called 'Altan'.

I hope MMario will soon be back with ABCs for the lyrics I posted, Magherafelt Hiring Fair (Tam Boy) and The Daysman.

The Salt is sung to a familiar jig tune; the same tune used for singing "The Devil and Bailiff McGlynn". Lyrics for the latter can be found in The Stone Fiddle by Paddy Tunney, but without the air. (I haven't looked to see if it's already somewhere on Mudcat).

The Strabane Hiring Fair has been mentioned (see folktrax message). The song is in the book Come Day, Go Day, God Send Sunday compiled by Robin Morton from the singing and life story of John Maguire, Co. Fermanagh farmer and singer (London: Routledge Kegan Paul, 1973). Maguire made a record for Leader. This is another courting song connected with hiring. In the book, Maguire also talks about his memories of hiring fairs.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: MMario
Date: 09 Apr 03 - 08:52 AM

working on them! the ice storm in upsate NY has deranged things a bit...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Tune Add: MAGHERAFELT HIRING FAIR
From: MMario
Date: 09 Apr 03 - 10:16 AM

see Philippa's post Apr 3, 6:57 am

X:1
T:MAGHERAFELT HIRING FAIR
I:abc2nwc
M:3/4
L:1/8
K:G
z4G G|G4G2|B4B2|A4G2|G4G G|G4G2|
w:Would you hire with me, Tam Bo, Tam Bo? would you hire with
B4G2|A2G2E2|E4B B|B4B2|d4B2|
w:me, my heart and my Jo? would you hire with me? say
A2A2G2|A4G2|A4A2A2|B2B2G2|E2D2D2|D4z2
w:you and say I and what an a ran-tin' young wi-dow am I.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Tune Add: THE DAYSMAN
From: MMario
Date: 09 Apr 03 - 10:41 AM

X:1
T:THE DAYSMAN
C:Eddie Butcher
Q:3/8=50
I:abc2nwc
M:6/8
L:1/8
K:C
z4zD|G G (G/2 G/2) G A (B/2 B/2)|B D D D2D/2 D/2|
w:I oncet was a_ days-man, I_ wrought cause an-ent And a
A A (A3/2 A/2) A d c|B G A B2B/4 B/2 c/4|
w:day in the_ week was kep' off for the rent; We had a
d e (d3/4 d/4) d G (G/2 G/2)|G (D/2 G/2) (G/2 G/2) B2G/2 G/2|
w:row o'er the_ hour-rs my_ blood bein'_ on_ fire,So I
B B z/2B/2 d (c/2 A/2) ^F/2 F/2|A (G/2 G) G/2 G3
w:packed up me dun-dle_ and I star-ted_ to hire


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: THE STRABANE HIRING FAIR
From: Felipa
Date: 09 Apr 03 - 02:55 PM

okay, MMario, now that you've caught up, I've typed out the "Strabane Hiring Fair".

Lest anyone lately coming to this thread thinks that hiring fairs were unique to the northwest of Ireland, one of the first songs mentioned in the thread was the Scottish "Barnyards of Delgaty".

Omagh and Strabane are in Tyrone, N Ireland and John Maguire was from Co Fermanagh

THE STRABANE HIRING FAIR
from the singing of John Maguire

From Omagh town unto Strabane one morning as I took my way,
Sure all along the road seemed thronged with lads and lasses fine and gay.

It was there I spied a charming wee maid, she was walking slowly by herself,
For a-fear the rain her clothes would stain I did extend my umberel.

"How far do you travel along the road on this fine summer's morning oh!"
"It's 'til Strabane," she kindly says, "do you not know this is hiring day?"

"I fear the day it will be wet, although the morning does look fine
I fear my love," she then did say, "we won't be in for hiring time".

"Well if you consent to have a glass, let it be brandy, ale of wine,
We'll take a glass and then we'll pass and reach Strabane for hiring time."

She gave consent, away we went unto an ale-house by the way;
Glass after glass the time did pass, to we both forgot it was hiring day."

The clock struck three she smiled at me, "Kind servant boy the fault is thine,
The evening's wet and we're far from home, forby we missed our hiring time."

"Cheer up, cheer up my bonny wee lass, I do not mean to harm you.
For a marriage now I mean to try, for a servant boy proves always true."

"To marry a man I am too young, besides my mother has none but me
But I'll comply and I'll never deny I'll marry before I hire again."

That night we spent in merriment and married we were next day;
And every now and then she'd smile, and my hiring time was knocked astray.

Let lads and lasses all be true and listen to these couple of lines;
If you take a glass too long to last, you're sure to miss your hiring time."


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Felipa
Date: 09 Apr 03 - 03:26 PM

Robin Morton, who recorded J. Maguire, also published lyrics and tune of the Strabane Hiring Fair in Folksongs Sung in Ulster. Cork: Mercier, 1970. (In that book the title is given simply as "The Hiring Fair")


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: GUEST,Boab
Date: 10 Apr 03 - 03:23 AM

Wolfgang---you've been watching me------!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: an Spealadóir
From: Felipa
Date: 10 Apr 03 - 01:45 PM

the lyrics given in Ó Baoill, see MMario's abc posted a few days ago,
are a fragment of an Aisling poem by Eoghan Rua Ó Súilleabháin of Kerry (1748-1784). The only reason they are in this thread is because the other Spealadóir with lyrics posted goes to a variant of the tune. Some day an Spealadóir will get its own thread. But before that I will send MMario tune for The Strabane Hiring Fair.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Hiring fair songs
From: GUEST,Philppa
Date: 11 Apr 03 - 06:47 AM

extract from comments on The Hiring Fair at Hamiltonsbawn (lyrics in DT) in Robin Morton, Folksongs Sung in Ulster. Cork: Mercier, 1970
"Hiring fairs were in full swing up to fifty [now 80] years ago and the one at the bawn is remembered as recently as forty years ago [1930]. Every town had a fair, as much a social as a commercial nexus. Not every fair, however, was used as a 'hiring fair' and those that were had the labour-hiring aspect superimposed on them once in six months. May and November seem to have been themonths favoured for 'hiring'; no doubt becuase May marked the beginning of the harvest season and November heralded preparation of the ground and planting.

"One man explained ot me that 'in them days there were no tractors, no balers, no hay cutters, only the scythe and a man's hands - it was all hand labour. If you were a workman's son, or belonged to a family that was brought up, or maybe you hadn't ever a farm, you went to the fair and if you were lucky, a man would come up and ask you 'are you hiring?' - you made your deal with him. He gave you a few shillings and you gave him your belongings - you were hired.'

... ...

"A man, who had never any need to hire himself, and thus had no axe to grind, told me of a scene he remembered forty years ago. 'I seen me in Monaghan town, there was a fella with a wee butt of a coat on him and he was hiringthis good likely-looking man for six pounds a month!- and you could buy heifirs for seven and eight pounds apiece; a man was cheaper than a cow!' I pointed out that the man would have received his 'keep' as well as the £6, to which he acidly replied - 'Aye, well he might give you something to eat - you got licking the plates or something; not too much. It wouldn't bust you anyway.' "


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: The Strabane Hiring fair
From: GUEST,Philippa
Date: 11 Apr 03 - 06:49 AM

Robin Morton's comments about The Strabane Hiring Fair:

"It's a poor cloud that has no silver lining; the possibility of meeting a woman or man at the fair must always have been a hope.
"Bridget Maguire ... a sister of John [Maguire] ... sang this song with such a twinkle that I think she must have indulged in the pleasures she sang of.

"The girl in the song decides that in spite of the drawbacks marriage has much to commend it as an alternative to 'hiring'.

"Although she would have had some chores to perform for her husband's employer and his sife, these would have been easily balanced by the joys of bringing up her own family, and performing her 'wifely duties'. anything was preferable to the lonely life of a servant girl."


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Tune Add: THE STRABANE HIRING FAIR
From: MMario
Date: 11 Apr 03 - 10:11 AM

X:1
T:THE STRABANE HIRING FAIR
I:abc2nwc
M:6/8
L:1/8
K:D
A2c d2d|c2c B2B|d2e f2f|e2d c2A|
w:Ah from O-magh town on to Stra-bane one morn-ing as I took my
A3d2d|c2c B2B|c2e f2b|f2e f2B|B3-B3
w:way, All a-long the road seemed thronged, with lads and lass-es fine and gay._


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Felipa
Date: 22 May 03 - 11:04 AM

I see the Cranbally Farmer is in the folktrax list, message of 16 Aug 01. Well, words and abc are in the mudcat forum.

see also the Galbally Farmer (or The Spalpeen's Lament of the Cranbally Farmer) or Darby O'Leary (where you'll get a link to the Galbally farmer thread for other versions)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: GUEST
Date: 15 Jul 04 - 10:07 AM

another one posted at Mudcat: Jobber from Clare or "Paddy from Clare"


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: pavane
Date: 01 Mar 06 - 11:33 AM

Thread creep!

Since I posted the note on Richard (or Dicky) of Taunton Deane, I have discovered that at the time the song was printed (C1837) my ancestors, including my Great-Great-Great-Grandfather (died 1848), were living in the Vale of Taunton Deane (Oake and Milverton). No Richards amongst them as far as I know.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Mo lean le lua
From: GUEST,Maire.
Date: 17 Mar 09 - 01:55 PM

If anyone has these lyrics I would be sooo greatful.
My mother sang it with great gusto and I would love to learn it.
Thanks.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hiring fair songs
From: Rog Peek
Date: 09 Jun 09 - 12:26 PM

In "The Salt" posted by Auxiris the word 'piners' is shown as a 'misunderstood word'. Although Kevin Coneff uses this word in his version on his "The Week Before Easter", when he sang the song in concert at The Colston Hall, Bristol a few years ago, he substituted 'crubeens'. This prompted me to start this thread Piners?

When I sing this song I use the word crubeens.

Rog


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate
  Share Thread:
More...

Reply to Thread
Subject:  Help
From:
Preview   Automatic Linebreaks   Make a link ("blue clicky")


Mudcat time: 25 September 6:21 PM EDT

[ Home ]

All original material is copyright © 1998 by the Mudcat Café Music Foundation, Inc. All photos, music, images, etc. are copyright © by their rightful owners. Every effort is taken to attribute appropriate copyright to images, content, music, etc. We are not a copyright resource.