Make your own free website on Tripod.com

Rattlebone and Ploughjack. 1976

Home
Folks A'Bunchum
Taking Sides
Morris On. 1972
Son of Morris On. 1976
Grandson of Morris On. 2002
Great Grandson of Morris On. 2004
Morris On The Road. 2005
Morris On The Road 2006
The Magic Of Morris. 2005
Rattlebone and Ploughjack. 1976
West Midlands Morris
The Duck Race 2004
Media
Womens Morris Sides
Links

The Personnel is mostly uncredited but includes

John Locke, fiddle;
Albion Morris Men, dancers;
William Palmer, spoken word;
and Cyril Papworth, dancer.

Side 1: Rattlebone

Morris Dancing of the Wales Border Counties Herefordshire, Shropshire and Worcestershire

  1. Reading from Piers Plowman.
    (unnamed reader)
  2. A cylinder recording of the Herefordshire gypsy fiddler John Locke, playing an unnamed hornpipe. Made by Cecil Sharp at the turn of the century.
  3. Old Hall was the legendary Elizabethan pipe-and-tabor player. This eulogy (unnamed reader) comes from a contemporary pamphlet. The tune for pipe and tabor is Jack off the Green from William Preece of Dilwyn, Hertfortshire.
  4. The Bromsberrow Heath Three Handed Reel is a tune from Bromsberrow melodeon player, Beatrice Hill
    (unnamed musicians playing melodeon, concertina, tambourine).
  5. This is followed by a local carol (a variant of Christ Made a Trance)
  6. The Elizabethan actor and morris-dancer William Kemp is said to be the author of the pamphlet Old Meg of Herefordshire for a Mayd Marian and Hereford Towne for a morris daunce or 12 morris dauncers in Herefordshire of 12 hundred years old (1609 London). This quote comes from it.
  7. The next dance is from Brimfield. The tune is a hornpipe from Stephen Baldwin of Upton Bishop, Herefordshire. (Unnamed dancers plus unnamed musicians playing melodeon, bones, tambourine)
  8. An account of dancers at Shrewsbury from Shropshire Notes and Queries, 1885
    (unnamed reader)
  9. Dance from Much Wenlock
    (unnamed dancers plus unnamed musicians playing anglo-concertina and tambourine)
  10. Broseley Morris tune Om si the Gom. A stick dance went to this.
    (unnamed singer and musician playing vocal and banjo).
  11. One of the earliest references to morris dancers making a nuisance of themselves. This is from Puritans at a Much Wenlock court case in 1652.
    (unnamed reader)
  12. Into Worcestershire. The bagpipes (smallpipes or lowland bagpipe) play two Border tunes, Not for Joe and Sheepskins. The latter is the same tune as Om si the Gom.
  13. Frozen rivers meant that fishermen couldn't work, so another way of raising money was needed.
    (unnamed reader)
  14. The future? Albion Morris Men perform the Upton-Upon-Severn Stick Dance to electric guitars and drums.
    (This track was previously released on The Electric Muse where the musicians were identified as John Watcham, anglo-concertina; Simon Nicol, electric guitar; Ashley Hutchings, bass; Roger Swallow, drums)

Side 2: Ploughjack

Molly Dancing of the Fens and Plough Customs of the East Midlands

  1. Little Downham, Cambridgeshire, 1931
    (unnamed reader)
  2. Birds a'Building dance from Girton, Cambs. When the leader called “Set!” the dancers bobbed down momentarily in imitation of birds nesting
    (unnamed dancers plus unnamed musician playing anglo concertina)
  3. The Hi Ninny Naw Nee chant was meant to simulate the sound of the “nags”.
    (unnamed reader and unnamed voices)
  4. Smash the Window dance from Girton
    (unnamed dancers plus unnamed musicians playing anglo concertina and tambourine)
  5. William Palmer reads his own account of a visit to Little Downham on Plough Monday, 1933. As it turned out, this was one of the last times that Molly dancing was to be seen in the Fens.
  6. Frank Beeton of Balsham, Cambs., had this old rhyme (All in a Row or similar). The Molly dancers used to recite it. (unamed voices)
  7. “Cross-Hand” dance from Comberton, Cambs., danced to the tune Shave the Fiddle
    (unnamed dancers plus unnamed musicians playing mouth organ and tambourine)
  8. Into Lincolnshire with the first of many Plough-Play quotes and the sound of the bagpipes.
    (unnamed reader plus unnamed musician playing smallpipes or lowland bagpipe)
  9. Cambridge man Cyril Papworth dances the Broom Dance, which he first learned from his grandfather, on of the old Comberton Molly dancers.
    (unnamed reader plus unnamed musician playing fiddle)
  10. College Hornpipe dance from Girton, to a tune from the Little Downham musician George Green.
    (unnamed reader plus unnamed dancers plus unnamed musician playing English concertina)
  11. The Straw-Bear quote comes from the Folk-Lore Society's journal (volume 20, 1909), which also contains two wonderful photographs of the Whittlesey Straw-Bear - the only ones that I know of.
    (unnamed reader)
  12. The final tune is from George Green.
    (unnamed musicians playing melodeon, banjo and drum)
  13. Little Downham, 1931, again.
    (unnamed reader

Rattlebone and Ploughjack 1976 [click for larger]
Island HELP 24 (LP, UK, 1976 (recorded 1973))

This is an extract from a booklet
about Border Morris Dancing,
which is published by
 

The term was coined by 
 Dr Cawte in an article for
JEFDSS to cover the seasonal
performance in the Welsh Border
counties of Shropshire and Herefordshire

problems, solutions and answers
from Rich Holmes

Welcome to the Foxs Border Morris
wonderful web site!
So who are we I hear you cry!
Well we are a group of
approximately 20 men and
women who meet every Thursday 
evening to practice and dance
traditional  border Morris....

This paper was originally
prepared for the
Roots of Border Morris Conference 
organised by the Morris Federation at
West Malvern on 29th February 1992.

The online guide to folk song,
dance and roots music for
 the West Midland counties

The Loose Women dance their own
interpretation of Border Morris,
which is a ‘loose’, loud, stompy
style of dancing. The only hankies
you’ll find in this team will be to
blow their noses on.

The West Midland counties
seem to have been
great carol country and
there's an interesting range of styles

an article written by
that esteemed player of
melodeons and concertinas,
Mr. John Kirkpatrick
and published by
Direct Roots". the new folk directory
and guide published by
Mrs Casey Music, 2001

EFDSS
.

Whittlesey Straw Bear
Whittlesey Straw Bear

Plough Monday

The Monday after Twelfth Night was the first day of labour after Christmas if there was any work in the fields. The plough was blessed. A precursory custom, possibly very ancient, prevailed in the east of England Plough Stots, Plough Jags or Plough Plays were enacted, much like mumming plays, for money. Look out for the recently revived Molly Dancers performing in the East Midlands and East Anglia, with their painted or blackened faces and colourful costumes. One of the traditional dancers was the Molly or Betty, a man-woman.

Molly dancing takes place at the Straw Bear Festival at Whittlesey, Cambridgeshire on January 13th, 14th, 15th. Banned in 1909 as a form of begging, a man ‘dressed’ in straw and paraded around the town with music and dancing was revived in 1980. For further information see www.strawbear.org.uk

Christ Made A Trance

Martin Carthy version

Christ made a trance one Friday view
And he made it with his own hand
He made the sun clear all off the moon
Like water on dry land

Like water on dry land man Christ
Who died all on the tree
What shall we do for our Saviour
As he has done for we

What'll we do for our Saviour man Christ
Who died all on the road
We'll do as much for him man Christ
Who shared his precious blood

The holly points her head to Heaven
To show her berries red
The drops of our Saviour's sweet blood
On Calvary were shed

Christ made a trance one Friday at noon
He made it with his own hand
He made the sun clear all of the moon
Like water on dry land

Three drops of our sweet Saviour's blood
Were shed on Calvary
Fell down on the precious grass O lord
Like the leaves fall down from the tree

Oh Hell is deep and Hell is dark
And Hell is full of mist
What'll we do for our Saviour man Christ
As he has done for us

Rattlebone and Ploughjack version
 
Christ made a trance one Sunday at noon
He made it with his hand
And made the sun clear all off the moon
Like the water off dry land
 
Like water off the land man Christ
What died upon the cross
What shall we do for our Saviour
As he has done for us
 
What'll we do for our Saviour man Christ
Who died all on the road
We'll do as much for him man Christ
Who shared his precious blood
 
The holly points her head to Heaven
To show her berries red
The drops of our Saviour's sweet blood
On Calvary were shed
 
Christ made a trance one Friday at noon
He made it with his own hand
He made the sun clear all of the moon
Like water on dry land
 
Three drops of our sweet Saviour's blood
Were shed on Calvary
Fell down on the precious grass O lord
Like the leaves fall down from the tree
 
Oh Hell is deep and Hell is dark
And Hell is full of moss
What shall we do for our Saviour
That he has done for us

the complete morris on website
is 2006/2007
sam and lizzie
all rights reserved