I learned this from Peter Bellamy’s 1969 solo LP The Fox Jumps Over the Parson’s Gate. Bellamy learned the song from the great Harry Cox of Catfield in Norfolk (you can hear him singing it on the Topic double-CD The Bonny Labouring Boy) while Walter Pardon, from nearby Knapton, had a very similar version. Obviously this is a song which ought really to be sung by a woman, but with such an impressive list of male precedents, I won’t let this worry me. In any case, it’s a joy to sing.
The Female Drummer