Welcome to the Dragon Folk Club

Welcome to the official blog of the Dragon Folk Club, which meets for a singers night every Friday at The Bridge Inn, Shortwood, Bristol. Everyone is welcome whether you sing, play or just listen.

Saturday, 31 August 2013

Civil rights, the sea and rovin'

Joseph Taylor
This week it was Steve G who set himself a personal theme, and it was centred around the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King's "I have a dream" speech. His songs were also all by Bob Dylan. The first was Oxford Town. He followed that with Only a pawn in their game, about the death of black activist, Medgar Evers. Steve's third song was The lonesome death of Hattie Carroll, which gives a generally factual account of the killing of 51-year-old barmaid Hattie Carroll by William Devereux "Billy" Zantzinger.
Another theme which arose was of songs with a maritime connection. Given that both Mike and Robin are members of (two different) groups of shantymen, it's not that unusual but this week it seemed that most people had a contribution to make. I wasn't there at the start of the session, so it's quite possible that Mike kicked off the evening with a shanty, but the first I heard was Robin singing A-Rovin'. Richard's contribution was Farewell to grog which uses the same tune and chorus as Come landlord fill the flowing bowl.

Colin sang Cyril Tawney's That's what it's like in the navy, which elicited fond memories from Ray and Tom of leaving the ship after weeks at sea, unable to walk in a straight line because the ground is no longer moving. Simon took us to the other side of the Atlantic with the Newfoundland version of We'll rant and we'll roar. Robin returned to the maritime theme with James Gordon's Frozen in Frobisher Bay. Rachel was another to return to a nautical theme with Phil Gaston's Navigator, written for The Pogues. Rachel said she likes songs about women dressing as men and joining the navy, and sang the one she has so far learnt to sing,

A couple of other minor themes arose. Tom sang two songs by Paul Simon, who it seems he doesn't particularly like - work that one out. The songs were Duncan and American Tune.

The first stemmed from Tom's threat to sing Wild Rover (I couldn't resist linking that version I found), a song which is frowned upon at this, and apparently many other, sessions. It was however Derek who first gave us his version, Wild rover no more. Finally, Mike closed the session with his spoof version, Land Rover.

Here's a selection of these songs plus some others sung during the session.

(Comment added on 8 May 2015: I'm not sure what happened to this report. There seem to be bits missing. I've tidied it up a bit but that has left it without some of its original detail, which no longer made sense. Sorry about that.)

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