Sedgefield Fair: More​-​or​-​less traditional songs from England & Scotland

by Jane Peppler

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Michael Raley
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Michael Raley Something on the lighter side. Even though I don't play traditional music on the Concertina, I still like to hear it sing out in it's native grounds. Favorite track: Sedgefield Fair.
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released May 10, 1993

Jane Peppler - vocals, violin, viola, English concertina
Jacqueline Schwab - piano
Robbie Link - acoustic bass, violone


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Skylark Productions Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Record label featuring "More or less traditional" folk and traditional music from the Northern Hemisphere and the previous millennium.

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Track Name: Sedgefield Fair
All of the boys from miles around come to the fair at Sedgefield town,
They don't need money they don't need brass,
They all come down to find themselves a lass,

The girls of Sedgefield Fair, me boys, the girls of Sedgefield Fair.

Are you thinking back to when you were a lad,
All the right good times we had,
Spittin on your boots and combin on your hair,
Then off down the hill to Sedgefield Fair

Well the toffs and the nobs and the lords all come
They eat roast beef and they drink good rum
Tinkers, plowboys, sailors in delight,
They all come down to dance all night.

You can buy hot lamb at a penny for a slice,
A big enough piece to fill you up twice
Roast and bread that you can share with a friend
You're gonna eat well if you eat all you spend

I saw a six foot bear and a three foot man,
A woman from Spain with a beard on her chin
Seen a lot of sights put me head in a whirl
The best of all is a Sedgefield Girl

So listen well as I sing my song
Take my advice and you can't go wrong
Take me well, you'll have the time of your life,
You never know your luck, you may even find a wife
Track Name: Reynard the Fox
You gentlemen of high renown come listen unto me
That takes delight in foxhunting by every degree.
A story I will tell to you concerning of a fox,
Near Royston Hills o'er mountains high and over stony rocks.

Bold Reynard being all in his hole and hearing of these hounds
Which made him for to prick his ears and tread upon the ground.
"Methinks me hear some jubal hounds pressing upon my life;
Before that they to me do come I'll tread upon the ground."

We hunted full four hours or more by parishes sixteen;
We hunted full four hours or more and came by Barkworth Green.
"Oh if you'll only spare my life I promise and fulfil
To touch no more your feathered fowl nor lambs on yonder hill."

Bold Reynold beat and out of breath from treading on the ground
Thinking he must give up his life before these jubal hounds.
So here's adieu to ducks and geese, likewise young lambs also
They've got bold Reynold all by the brush and will not let him go.
Track Name: The Ploughboy Lad
The lark is a bonny bird and she flies off her nest.
She mounts the morn air with the dew on her breast
She flies o'er the ploughboy, she whistles and she sings
And at evening she returns with the dew on her wings

Early one morning the ploughboy arose
Whistling and singing to the field as he goes
He met a pretty fair maid, he met her in the lane
One question he asked her and he thought it no shame...

One question he asked her: Could he take her to the fair,
And buy her some ribbons for to tie up her hair?
But this maiden, she answered, to the field she would not go,
Saying: "I don't want your ribbons, I can buy myself a bow."

But walking and talking down by yon shady grove
With no one for to listen but the young turtledove
She put her harms around him and he took her to the fair,
And she bought herself some ribbons to tie back her hair

And as they were returning from the fair unto the town
Where the meadows were mowed and the grass it was cut down
And the nightingale whistled upon the hawthorne spray
And the moon it was a shining upon the new-mown hay...

Good luck unto these lovers wherever they be
I hope they live together in sweet harmony
And when that they awaken, sure they'll whistle and they'll sing,
And I pray they'll be as happy as the lark on the wing.
Track Name: Artichokes & Cauliflower
Artichokes and Cauliflowers

You fair maids of London who lead a single life
It's better far being a barrow girl than a rich merchant's wife
For so early in the morning you will hear her to cry
Artichokes and cauliflowers pretty maidens will you buy

There sits a girl at Saint Billingsgate I'll not tell to you her name
She's proper tall and handsome and worthy of her fame
As she waits for her jolly waterman to come rowing by still she cries
Artichokes and cauliflowers pretty maidens will you buy

Her husband he's a quiet man and a quiet man is he
All for to wear the horns me boys contented he must be
As she goes and takes her pleasure when the waterman he comes nigh
Artichokes and cauliflowers pretty maidens will you buy

Oh the waterman that's a trade me boys that's a trade that seldom fails
Come hail rain or sunshine our boats are in full sail
And the barrow girl so merrily to her waterman she will fly
Artichokes and cauliflowers pretty maidens will you buy

Here's to your love and to my love and all true hearted souls
Likewise unto the jolly waterman with his full flowing bowl
Here's a health to the jolly waterman who in Billingsgate still she cries
Artichokes and cauliflowers pretty maidens will you buy
Track Name: The Rambling Comber
Rambling Comber

You combers all both great and small
Come listen to my ditty
For it is ye and only ye
Regard my form with pity
For I can write, read, dance and fight
Indeed it’s all my honour
But oh my dear, I love strong beer
For I’m a rambling comber

It’s on the tramp I’m forced to scamp
My shoes are all a tatter
My hose unbound trail on the ground
I seldom wear a garter
I have a coat scarce worth a groat
And surely want for another
But oh my dear, I love strong beer
For I’m a rambling comber

I have no watch, I have a patch
On both sides of my breeches
My hat is torn, my wig is worn
My health is all my riches
Would that I had some gay gold lace
My clothing to embroider
And a charming lass to fill my glass
For I’m a rambling comber

A tailor’s bill I’ll seldom fill
I never do take measure
I have no debt that will me let
In the taking of my pleasure
Nor ever will ’til I grow old
When I must give it over
For then old age will me engage
For being a rambling comber

A pitcher boy I will employ
While I have cash or credit
I’ll rant and roar and call for more
And pay them when I have it
For this is always on my mind
Be I drunk or sober
A bowl of punch my thirst to quench
A quart of old October
Track Name: Adieu, adieu
Adieu, Adieu

Adieu, adieu, hard was my fate,
I was brought up in a tender state.
Bad company did me entice,
I left off work and took bad advice.

It makes me now to lament and call,
Have pity on such fellows all

At 17 I took a wife, I loved her dear as I love my life
And to maintain her both fine and gay I went a robbing on the highway

I robbed Lord Goldwyn, I do declare,
And Lady Mancefield of Grosvenor Square,
But Fielding's gang did me pursue,
Taken I was by that cursed crew

Before Judge Hall then I was took,
Before Judge Hall then I was tried.
It's, "Harry Jones, this will not do,
My iron chest you have broke through."

Now when I'm dead and going to my grave
A pleasant funeral let me have,
Six highwaymen to carry me,
Give them broadswords and sweet liberty

Six blooming girls to bear up my pall,
Give them white hats and pink ribbons all
When I am dead, they may tell the truth,
There goes a wild undaunted youth.
Track Name: The Lass of Glenshee
The Lass Of Glenshee

One bright summer's morning as the fields they were a-dawning
Bright Phoebus arose and shone over the lea
I espied a fair maid as I homeward was riding
A-herding her sheep on the hills of Glenshee

I stood in amaze and said Aye bonny lassy
If you'll only consent to ride on with me
Fine servants you will have for to go at your bidding
I will make you my lady, the lass of Glenshee

I care not at all for servants and linen
Nor I don't care at all for your great grandery
I would rather be here in my homespun little cottage
A-herding my flocks on the braes of Glenshee

She was neat tall and handsome, her voice so enchanting
And so keen was the glint of her bonny blue e'e
And I cried Only you shall be mistress of my castle
She smiled and consented and I took her with me

Many years have rolled by since we first were united
Many seasons have changed, but there's no change in me
My love still as fair as the robes in the morning
That are hung out to bleach on the hills of Glenshee

May the lark forget to arise in the morning
Caledonia's dark waters flow back to the sea
But never will I while I have my senses
Forget to be kind to the lass of Glenshee
Track Name: Mothering Sunday
It is the day of all the year, of all the year the one day
That I shall see my mother dear and bring her cheer a mothering on Sunday

So I'll put on my Sunday coat and in my hat a feather
And get the lines I writ by note with many a note that I've a-strung together

And now to fetch my wheaten cake, to fetch it from the baker
He promised me for mother's sake, the best he'd bake for me to fetch and take her

My sister Jane is waiting maid along with Squire's lady
And year by year her part she's played, and home she's stayed to get the dinner ready

For mother comes to church, you see, of all the year it's the day
"The one," she'll say, "that's made for me!" And so it be - it's every mother's free day

The boys will all come home from town, not one will miss that one day
And every maid will bustle down to show her gown, a-mothering on Sunday

It is the day of all the year, of all the year the one day
And here come I, my mother dear, to bring you cheer a-mothering on Sunday
Track Name: Buy broom besoms
If you want a besom for to sweep your house
Come to me my lassies, you shall have your choice

Buy broom besoms, buy them when they're new
Bonny green broom besoms, better never grew

Besoms for a penny, rangers for a plack
If you will not buy, I'll tie them on my back

If I had a love I'd care not who he be
If he be half human that's enough for me

If he likes a droppie, then we will agree
If he doesn't like it, there's the more for me

As I was a roving o'er the hills so high
I met a buxom farmer with a roving eye

He tipped to me the wink I wrote to him the tune
I eased him of his chink a gathering of green broom

He ploughed the furrows deep and laid the corn so low
He left it there to keep just like green broom to grow

I'll bundle all my brooms and take them to the fair
I'll sell them all by wholesale, nursing's now my care
Track Name: Barracks Street
All sailors all come lend an ear, come listen to me song.
A trick of late was played on me and it won't detain you long.
I come from sea the other day, a girl I chanced to meet,
She said "Me friends will be expecting me to a dance in Barrack Street."

But I said to this fair young maid: "I cannot dance so well.
Besides I am to Windsor bound where my friends all do dwell.
I've been at sea these past two years - I've saved up thirty pounds.
My friends will be expecting me this night in Windsor town."

"Well if you cannot dance, me love, then you shall stand a treat.
Have a glass or two of brandy and a something for to eat.
At six o'clock this evening, oh I'll meet you off the train,
So don't forget to give a call when you come to town again."

At eight o'clock that evening, well the whiskey it came in,
And when we all had drunk our fill the dancing did begin.
Me and me love danced all around to a merry tune.
She says, "Me dear, let us retire into a chamber alone."

The dancing being over then to bed we did repair,
And there I fell fast asleep, the truth I do declare.
Me darling with me thirty pounds, gold watch and chain had fled,
Left me here poor Jack alone, stark naked on the bed.

So I looked all around me and there's nothing I could spy
But a woman's shirt and apron all on the bed did lie;
I wrung me hands and I tore me hair cried, "Oh what shall I do?
Fare you well, sweet Windsor town, I'm sure I'll never see you."

Well, everything being silent and the hour being twelve o'clock,
I put on the shirt and apron and I steered for Crowman's Wharf.
The captain shouted, "Jack! I thought you were to Windsor bound!
You might have bought a better suit than that for thirty pound."

So all of you young sailor lads a warning take from me:
Beware of all your company when you go out on a spree,
And keep clear of Barrack Street or else you'll rue the day,
In a woman's shirt and apron, oh, they'll ring you out to sea.
Track Name: Come Lasses and Lads
Come lasses and lads take leave of your dads and away to the maypole hie
For every fair has a sweetheart there and a fiddler standing by
Then Willie will dance with Jane and Johnny has got his Joan
And every maid shall trip it and trip it and trip it up and down

"Begin," says Matt. "Aye, aye," says Nat, "We'll lead up Packington's Pound."
"No, no," says Nolly, and so says Dolly: "We'll first have Sellinger's Round."
Then every man began to foot it round about
And every maid did step it and step it and step it in and out.

"You're off!" says Dick. "Not I," says Nick, "Twas the fiddler played it wrong!"
"Tis true," says Hugh and so says Sue, and so says everyone.
The fiddler then began to play the tune again.
And every maid did jig it and jig it and jig it to the men.

Well there they did stay for the whole of the day and they tired the fiddler quite.
With dancing and play without any pay from morning until night.
They told the fiddler then that they'd pay him for his play,
And each a tuppence, a tuppence they gave him and then they went away.

"Goodnight," says Harry. "Goodnight," says Mary, "Goodnight," says Dolly to John.
"Goodnight," says Sue to her sweetheart Hugh, "Goodnight," says everyone.
Some walked and some did run, some loitered on the way,
And they bound themselves with kisses twelve to meet next holiday.