Posts tagged ‘Fred Jordan’

June 9, 2013

Week 94 – The Galway Shawl

In previous posts I’ve mentioned the Shropshire singer Fred Jordan, but I think this is the only song I sing which I learned directly from him. I used to see Fred a fair bit in the eighties and early nineties at festivals such as Sidmouth and – especially – the National Folk Music Festival at Sutton Bonington. I was very taken with Fred’s singing of this song, and asked him to sing it one year in a singing session at Sutton Bonington. He readily obliged and, typically, even apologised afterwards for having muffed the words slightly.

The song was included on the Veteran CD A Shropshire Lad, where the notes say

Yet another song from Fred’s mother, although Fred probably also heard the Irish singer Margaret Barry performing it at English festivals. Surprisingly, we can find no trace of an author for the words, although the tune is well-known under a number of different titles, including Eochaill—which is the Irish name for the town of Youghal—or else Boolavogue.

Fred Jordan at the Fylde Folk Festival 1989. Photo copyright Roger Liptrot. From http://www.folkimages.com/Fylde/1989/index.html

Fred Jordan at the Fylde Folk Festival 1989. Photo copyright Roger Liptrot. From http://www.folkimages.com/Fylde/1989/index.html

The Galway Shawl

July 27, 2012

Week 49 – The Rigs of Rye

A rather lovely love song which I first heard on the long-unavailable Dick Gaughan LP, Kist O’ Gold. I learned it after finding the words in Ord’s Bothy Songs & Ballads. Both LP and book, I should add, were among the resources available in my local public library, circa 1980.

You can hear recorded versions from the Scottish tradition on the rather wonderful Tobar an Dualchais (Kist o Riches) website.

A note on the final verse: the original song, of course, has the couple spending their winters in Brechin; but I have followed Fred Jordan’s example in relocating their abode to Brecon.

The Rigs of Rye