My Son’s a Prawn

My Son’s a Prawn

Last weekend Les Oman was over in Ballycastle, from Campbeltown, singing songs in the Smugglers Inn & promoting the Ferry Link, but I digress, before I even got started (is that possible?!)

Anyway, he told me of a French Band who once introduced a Reel as: "My Son’s a Prawn" - Mason’s Apron

Anyone out there do any better??

Re: My Son’s a Prawn

well i was studying at a summer school in stirling once and this band were playing and they introduced their next number as

whistle over the lavatory - whistle o’er the lave o’t

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actually yours is better

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You mean like the rare and expensive make of violin, made by Lavatori?

Jim

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Loan us some blow, man.

Oft requested, usually refused, just like the tune.

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My favorite is still My Darling A Sheep. David, we always sang that one "with a yo, ho! Blow the man down" and it was a pirate song!

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Don’t know if this tune traces back to Ireland, maybe just to Appalachia, but a newspaper account said a friend of mine plays Pluck Old Hen (actually Cluck Old Hen). I howled when I read it.

Carol

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"Athol Highlanders" anyone?

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You might be talking about mondegreens actually. The term was coined by SF columnist, Jon Carroll when he received a letter from someone who said they had wondered since childhood who Lady Mondegreen was. There was a lyric in an old Scottish song where someone was killed along with this Lady Mondegreen, but she wasn’t mentioned in any other part of the song. When the letter writer found a book of Scottish songs at a garage sale she quickly turned to the song and read, "They slayed him and laid him on the green." Hence the term, "mondegreen".

Now he has a column devoted to these every year. One of the best-known mondegreens is from a Jimmy Hendrix song, "Scuse Me While I Kiss The Sky" that was heard as,"Scuse Me While I Kiss This Guy".

A couple of good ones happened at our local session as well. Someone asked us what tune we just played and we told him it was "Finbar Dwyer’s". He came back the next week and asked us if we would play that tune "Thin Barbwire." Same thing happened when a bodhr

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Thin Barbed-wire (correction)

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She Begs For More.

—-Michael B.

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We had a fella who used to play johnny kirkpatrick’s Jump at the Sun, but with his south-eastern accent, it was mondegreened into Champ at the Sand.

Dave

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no, it’s the thursty widow, silly …
In our dialect, dusty sounds a lot like ‘dustig’, which means ‘thursty".

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The Punch of Sniff

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There’s a tune on a Johnny Doherty album called Easter Snows, which is an English mis-hearing of an Irish place name, as I recall. But it got transformed further into Esther’s Nose, and Doherty even had a story about who Esther was.

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Jack, I’ve got the tune to that old Scottish song, it’s only 12 bars in 3/4 so it’s something that could be played around with for improvisation and extensions. I think I’ll post it.
Trevor

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By the way, the person killed along with Lady Mondegreen was one Thirla Murray:

Ye highlands and ye lawlands
Oh where hae ye been?
They hae slain Thirla Murray
An’ Lady Mondegreen

Dave

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Dave, I believe I’ve seen "Thirla Murray" in print as "The Earl of Murray", the person whom the Scottish song was about. Yet another superb mondegreen!
BTW, I’ve just submitted the tune of that Scottish song.
Trevor

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I’ve posted a set of words to "The Bonnie Earl of Murray" as a comment to the tune of the same name.
Trevor

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Forty odd years ago, when my dad came back from a few months working in Australia, and I was only knee high to a grasshopper, he used to often be heard singing a song with chorus which demanded "What’s in the Tilden?"

It was years later that I found out what was in the Tilden.

Dave

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Jack, the great Jimi mondegreen is the namesake for www.kissthisguy.com. It’s about pop music not trad, but hilarious. Mark

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what was in the Tilden?

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My tilda

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we were doing this at the Seattle Irish Pipers Club tionol; "If you’re drunk, is it sex that you want" for "if you’re sick is it tea that you want". Must have been the beer. Had a great time in Seattle-hmmm, Piping in Seattle.

We could start a new thread- bent tune names

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Several years ago after Willie Week I was in a B&B in Ennis for a couple of days. There was a piper from Japan staying there as well, so we decided to play a few tunes together. He says to me "Do you know Crifzo Mohair?" I said, "No, I don’t, but play a bit of it anyway." He launched into the tune and I said "Oh! Cliffs of Moher!"

Another one I’ve heard, although this may be apochryphal, is that there was some German guy who, when referring to Vincent Broderick’s tune The Flagstone of Memories, instead called it Memories of Flagstones. (I’ve forgotten more flagstones than you’ll ever know, buster!)

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Was that YOUR tilda Danny?

It’s a very small one isn’t it.

;o) Dave

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A tangential mondegreen occurred at our sesh the other week. Rob had been clearing a loft and had found a french book of dots from about 25 years back. It has some pretty little tunes in. It is called the Massif Central tunebook. I suggested he should get a very large photocopy done, and place it in the middle of the room.

Then they passed me my coat.

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it’s not a tune but a type of tune.seamus begley said that in kerry they call hornpipes: condoms!!!

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Speaking of Seamus Begley, that reminds me of how he introduced a set of tunes at a concert at the Feakle Festival last year. It was something like this: "Now this is a set of tunes we call Johnny O’Leary’s. But actually, Johnny didn’t call them that, he called them Julia Clifford’s. But Julia Clifford, come to think of it, she called them Denis Murphy’s. And Dennis Murphy, by God, he called them Padraig O’Keeffe’s. And Padraig O’Keeffe, he called them…let me think now…Polkas. So there you are…"

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A slightly more tangential mondegreen is the story of the small boy who attended his grandfather’s funeral. Back at the house the family were having the sandwiches and tea and someone spotted the little lad playing in the garden. He had dug a hole and was busy kicking his teddy bear into it, chanting "in the name of the father and of the son and in the ‘ole ‘e goes", as he was doing it.
Trevor

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earl the breakfast boiler

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LOL @ these… this thread comes up often enough, the one I like that someone else posted was thinking that ‘Ceol Rince na h

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it’s not a garbled tune name, but this seems to fit the thread:

in the very late 70s, i had an irish music program on a community radio station in california. i frequently got requests for to play stuff by the ‘barfy band.’

sarah

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I have had a session clown ask if I can play "the tune that goes up at the start".

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I was playing a tune with a young lady the other night who innocently enquired if it was alright for her to go down while I stayed up. I really tried hard not to snigger…

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There’s the Old Hooker song they play before the rugby in Scotland "Awful hoor of Scotland".

Last St Patrick’s Day, I was in Kazakhstan, and the Kazakh-Russian bar manager asked me if the Irish people in the bar would sing her favourite Irish song "Three Birds Fly". As in, "Where once we watched …"

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Who’ll come a-what’s in ma tilda with me?

Anyway have we forgotten we had this kindov discussion before (why do I keep on saying that these days? - whenever I *do* come here) where we had:

The Kid on the Mountain Bike
Frigid of Knock
Banish My Foreskin

and there are more….

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Yeah, do we have any more creative tune titles to add to our list of tunes to write just to go with the titles?

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Surprise, surprise! I’ve been keeping a list over the past six months or so. Most are originals, but a bunch of them I’ve jotted down after seeing them here or hearing them from some musician or other. A few of them have actual tunes that go with them.

Commitment is Hell
Napoleon Crossing His Eyes
Napoleon Crossing His Fingers
Napoleon Crossing His T

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Oh, I just thought of one more: Swallow Real Ale

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Mug of Coors Light — now THERE’s gotta be a terrible tune. 🙂

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I was told of a tune learned at a French music festival called John Patterson - turned out to be Jump at the sun (try it with a french accent!)

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Wasn’t it Brad who gave us Waste in Bedding? Still laffing @ barfy band… LOL, sorry must be nurse humor day….. 🙂

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Or a tune for the Internet age: maid@thespinningwheel.com.

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I don’t get on this site often enough, so I’m late in the game with my answer…I first heard of mondegrens on an old album called Jean Ritchie and Oscar Brand live at ..? City Hall I think it was, and Oscar told the story. That must have been from the early 50’s, the album was owned originally by my late in-laws, and my wife brought it over with her from New York 26 years ago…..so they are at least that old….

GP

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So when did Jon Carrol call them mondegrens then……?

GP

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I was close, but incorrect. Here’s how the whole "mondegreen thing went down in John Carroll’s own words:

As a child, the writer Sylvia Wright heard a plaintive Scottish ballad titled “The Bonny Earl of Murray.” One stanza, she believed, went like this:

Ye Highlands and Ye Lowlands/ Oh Where hae you been?/ They hae slay the Earl of Murray/ And Lady Mondegreen.

How romantic, she thought, Lady Mondegreen perishing with her lord in the fierce, romantic wars of medieval Scotland. It was only much later that she realized that they had actually slain the Earl of Murray and “laid him on the green.”

She began to collect similar mishearings of song lyrics, poems, patriotic utterances and the like, and in 1954 published a small article about them, coining the word “mondegreen.” Then she died and 30 years passed and, voila, a columnist in San Francisco discovered the term and founded a small cottage industry — the collection and dissemination of mondegreens.

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I also have a copy of Jean Ritchie and Oscar Brand at Town Hall in New York (so I am at least that old, too…)

I remember Oscar telling the Mondegren story as between-song ‘patter’. Well, it bombed, apparently nobody in the concert audience ‘got it’, so the engineer spliced a few seconds of audience laughter in the final recording. Spliced - as in razor blade, this was the 1950s, no fades, just - silence then "Hahahah" then silence. I always remember that.

I could swear I was at a session once where someone asked if anyone knew a hornpipe called: The Rights of the Fairies. Add it to the list…

Bob

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For those in the NYC area: The Canarsie Boys of Leather.

I apologize in advance.

Tim