|Coulter's Candy (Photo: alistair fitchett)|
We welcomed back Tom who at least raised the number of attendees enough for us to be able to make a choice whether to hold a sing-around or a few hands of bridge. Having decided on the former, Colin began with Ian McCalman’s Let’s Recycle, based on events in Midlothian, and hence inadvertently introducing the first Scottish element to the evening.
Tom mercifully continued with Allan Taylor’s Roll on the Day, probably the only song in the canon pitched low enough to allow the suffering SubScribe to join in
Regular readers will recall that there was recently a discussion concerning the misapprehension [Ed: by Roger Whittaker] that Durham is on Tyneside. This went a stage further when Tom recalled that one of his uncles was always known for being Scottish, having come down South from the famous Caledonian town of … Seaham! Thereafter Scottish material was flagged up in the course of the evening, including Robert Coltart’s Coulter’s Candy (Roud 19019), and Freeborn Man (both Geoff – though he lost marks by failing to point out that the latter was written by Trueborn Scot Jimmie Miller from … Salford!), Corncrake (Tom - Roud 1736) and Cuckoo’s Nest (Roud 1506 , 5407) and Beinn a' Cheathaich (Derek).
Much of the interval was taken up by discussion of the best way to accompany on guitar Blackbird. To the shock and horror of your scribe this led to Tom beginning the second half by singing not the expected favourite by Henderson and Dixon, but one by an obscure North-Westerner called George Harrison [Ed: actually credited to Lennon–McCartney].
A further revelation by Tom was that he was a Man of Kent rather than a Kentish Man (depends which side of the Medway you’re born) which I have no doubt was the inspiration for Colin’s singing Bruce Blunt’s Cricketers of Hambledon, which distinctly mentions their ‘flogging Men of Kent’.
Derek took advantage of the Usual Scribe’s absence by singing Candlelight Fisherman (Roud 1852) in an authentic East Anglian accent; but his attempt to follow this by singing Dashing Away with the Smoothing Iron (Roud 869) led to violent outbreaks of rioting between those who believed there should be a full three ‘dashings’, and those who feel two are more than adequate.
Other songs included Dinny Byrne the Piper (Geoff - Roud 8147), Rigs of the Times (Derek - Roud 876), Leaving’s So Much Harder (Tom - Standing at the Door - Allan Taylor), Jake Thackray’s It was Only a Gypsy (Colin) and to finish the night I Wish They’d Do It Now (Colin - Roud 1401) – Davenport’s version, not Imlach’s.
Here's a selection of songs sung during this session.
(Number of people present - 4, of whom 3 sang, one croaked)