FOLK SESSION – Howard Arms - Brampton

FOLK SESSION – St Martin’s Cottage, Brampton

We had such a good turn-out that it felt rather like a musical game of Sardines when we met in St Martin’s Cottage on 15th December.  A warm welcome to Gwen, June and Peter from Penrith, joining us for the first time, and to Cathy, visiting us to play duets with Gerda.

The theme was ‘people’s names’, which made it easier for our patient instrumentalists who sometimes have to be pretty creative to find a link to the theme.  Frank on diatonic accordion played March of Clare’s Dragoons; Donald McLeod’s Reel and Bobbing Joan.  Peter on Puerto Rican cuatro used Jenny Lynd to ‘bookend’ a song, and Steve played Sally Gardens as an instrumental before singing the song.

If Phil managed to find the song with the largest number of names (Like me and you), Ruth probably found the longest single name (Godfrey Gordon Gustavus Gore.)  For sheer exuberant silliness Adrian must deserve a special mention for Susannah’s a funicle man, complete with grunts and whistles, and for inventiveness, Angus’s Scottish Cheating Song told us about a man suspicious of his girlfriend’s phone calls to Kirk Aldy and Bo Ness.

In many of the songs the names featured prominently in the titles: Gerda on concertina and Cathy on banjo sang the ‘happy blues’ Old Joe Clarke and Darling Cory.  Christine went for straightforward Country and Western in Jolene.  Gwen, June and Peter had great fun with the 1930s song Egyptian Ella.  Alan went for very traditional in the ballad Tam Lyn, as did Eliza with John Anderson, my jo.  Sally sang about a namesake in Sally free and easy.  Mary’s parody of John Peel took us to the modern Lake District of traffic congestion and four-wheel-drives.    Steve’s Magdalene McGillivray told a sad and historically factual story, whereas Katy’s Ever since the day my dog ate Auntie Bella told a story that was – fortunately – neither serious nor true!  

The names were tucked away in the verses in some of the songs.  Tecumseh Valley (Christine) charted the tragic downfall of Caroline; Adrian’s Song of Western Men thundered out defiance of King James and defence of Trelawny, and June, Peter and Gwen got us all singing along to Biker Hill (mentions Geordie Johnson).

We next meet on Tuesday 19th February at 8.30pm - PLEASE NOTE, BACK IN THE HOWARD ARMS.  The theme will be ‘clothing’ – Galway shawls, yellow handkerchiefs, you name it.  ALL WELCOME!  

January Review