Another Mournful Love

Once again I have to apologise for the late video, there was a severe outbreak of man-flu!  But we got there eventually, and decided this week to go for an absolute classic: “Black Is The Colour”.

Black Is The Colour was first collected in the Appalachian region in 1915 by the great collector Cecil Sharp, who published it in his 1917 book English Folk Songs Of The Southern Appalachians .  However it is generally agreed that the song has a Scottish origin, mainly owed to the song mentioning the Clyde river.

The song has been done by a wide variety of exceptional artists, probably most famously in 1964 by the incredible Nina Simone.  It has also been performed by the likes of Christy Moore, The Coors, Pete Seeger and Cara Dillon as well as many, many more.

Its a beautiful song about the protagonist (gender varies) mourning over a lost love…not the most original story in folk music, but if it ain’t broke!

We both really enjoyed this one and will certainly crack it out at a few live events in the future!


P.S. We want to say a HUGE thank you to Gary Hazlehurst at Stafford Fm for giving us our first ever radio play on his Thursday night Folk Show on the 18th, and then playing us AGAIN last night!! If you didn’t catch the show then they will be available on mixcloud in the near future, keep an eye out! And follow us on Facebook or Twitter for any future airplay info!

A Case of Mistaken Identity

This week we’re doing one of my favourite songs of all time: The Crow On The Cradle.

The case of mistaken identity has nothing to do with the song itself, merely the fact that we gave credit to the wrong songwriter on the video, so apologies for that! And if I’m being totally honest I thought this was a Show Of Hands original!

The song was written by Sydney Carter (not Jackson Browne, although he did do a version as well!) as an anti-war “lullaby”; the crow foretelling the life of pain that the child in the cradle will suffer along with their family: “The crow on the cradle, the white and the black/ Somebody’s baby is not coming back”

I’ve loved this song for years, the meaning behind it, the lyrics are a masterpiece and the music is so dark and foreboding and the nursery rhyme style to all of it adds a wonderful sense of sinister foreboding to the song.

We’ve struggled with this song as it’s so good already it’s hard to know what to do in terms of rearrangement…so we decided not to (other than adding a more ‘picky’ guitar part).  So we hope you enjoy this song, we certainly do!

An ill-informed Paris Trip

WE MADE IT TO 20!!!! Welcome everyone to week 20 of our Folk Song A Week project,  thank you all for sticking with us this far 🙂

To mark the occasion we thought we’d play a good upbeat tune for you all, and as we’ve loved these guys for ages we had to chose a Megson song. As much as we want to cover The Longshot it wasn’t upbeat enough for this week so it’ll have to wait it’s turn! For this week we chose The Smoke Of Home.

While the music is fittingly upbeat, the lyrics themselves are really rather depressing! They speak of a girl who sets out for Paris to find her fortune.  However things are never that straight forward and she finds that the glamorous Paris of her imagination isn’t what she finds there, and before too long she realises her mistake and longs for ‘the smoke of home’.

So without further ado here’s our version of this great song. Megson are a wonderful duo who deserve a lot of your attention (they’re currently on tour, go see them!).