Druidic & Masonic Tunes

Druidic & Masonic Tunes

Greetings, good folk!
My husband, who is a professional researcher, has asked me to place the following question before you in the hopes that the accumulated knowledge of sessioneers will be able to garner him results that search engines could not.
One of his specialties is the history of fraternal orders, friendly societies, and secret societies. He is quite intrigued by the existence of tunes referring to same. We have versions of The Mason’s Apron and The Druid (Y Derwydd), which is what got him hunting about in this topic.
Do you-all know of other tunes that refer, directly or indirectly, to Druids, Masons, Odd Fellows, etc? A list of titles would be quite helpful. (Please note, this is *not* a tune request, although he plays both mountain/appalachian and hammer dulcimers. It is solely an information request.)
Thanks!
Sara

Re: Druidic & Masonic Tunes

Shh shh..say nothing, lads.

*Secret* society, remember?

(only kidding, Sara. Good luck with your request :~} )

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That’s right, I forgot. If you tell me, then you have to kill me. ;)
And me a card-carrying Odd Fellow.
Sara

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No, Sara. You’ve got it the wrong way round. If they tell you, then you’ve got to kill them … 🙂

Trevor

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I once had a band called, "Odd Fellow’s Plot"

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A quick trawl through JC’s music database for "oddfellow" and "mason" comes up with

The Merry Oddfellows
The Oddfellows
Free and Accepted Mason
The Free Mason’s March
The Mason’s Cap
The Mason’s Men
Mason’s Quickstep
The Strolling Mason

Trevor

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Hey, do wizards count? There’s a tune in the database called The Wizard’s Walk. Nothing with druid in the title, though….

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I always assumed that "mason" out of "Mason’s Apron" was "stone mason".

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The "apron" in The Mason´s Apron is surely the apron that is worn in the freemason´s initiation ceremony. It must be said that it has more impact as a tune title than "The Rolled Up Trouser Leg"

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They wear aprons? The stuff you learn on this site… I won’t ask you how you know that! What about "The Shown Nipple" for a tune name?

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Hey Dow, you stole that from the other thread!

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Well, I didn´t know that, Dow, 🙂) (the nipple, I mean). Perhaps we could play it with a new composition "I feel a right t*t" and somehow link it to the tunes with a Napoleonic theme.

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LOL!
Jack, I reckoned "The Shown Nipple" sounded like "Out On The Ocean".
Oh how much more mileage can we get out of that 🙂

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Maybe contributors in Scotland could give some background to Riefield Lodge, Ranoch Lodge & Steward’s Lodge Song. These three are genuine tune titles, and they look like they might be candidates, particularly the last one.

How about a "compass and set square dance" ?

I actually visited the Free Mason’s Lodge in Philadelphia (with protesting catholic hubby in tow) and we were both very impressed by the building and our very erudite and French speaking tour guide.

c

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Is "The night we had the goats" a Masonic tune? Sorry, that’s an old joke about freemasons by outsiders, 🙂

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All I know about Masons I learned from Monty Python’s architects sketch. (Please oh please let me joing… I’ve got my own apron!)

Oh, and also Mozart’s Magic Flute opera.

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Re: Druidic & Masonic Tunes

I meant "join".

"Joing" is the sound of a spring in your mattress breaking when you’re trying to see if you can bounce high enough to touch your nose to the ceiling. This is often quickly followed by a curious crunching sound and a lot of pain.

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What about Mason Boyne, a jolly bowler hatted, subtly defined 🙂, character in a Harry Enfield series in the 80’s ?

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Q, I thought that was "boing"

But thanks for bringing up the excellent abattoir’s architect sketch, which did not feature in previous Python thread.

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Secret Handshake? That’s be a good title - hand jiving conotations here.

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Nah

"The funny handshake" is a much better version Cath

Does "the secret policeman" count?

Far too many closet masons where I work
SCAAAARRRRYYYY

Sarah

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Roaming in the gloaming by Harry Lauder
Robert Burns was a Mason too

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Hanging From The Bridge (The P2)

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"Mason Boyne" was a creation of Robbie Coltrane, not Harry Enfield, Cath.

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Did anyone ever see the bittersweet Australian film The Getting of Wisdom? A teenage girl looks inside her late father’s Mason’s case. She finds his apron, the ritual book and some condoms, which, she assumes, are part of the ritual. There is a wonderful self conscious moment when she and her best friend run through the ritual with the blown up condoms as swords and try not to laugh.
c

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Kenny, I stand corrected. But I’m sure Harry Enfield did a similar one, was it perhaps a slightly different name?

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I think actually the Harry Enfield character was ‘Tory Boy’ - it’s been so long I got the two confused.

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Re: Druidic & Masonic Antidiluvian Tunes

Don’t Buffalos get a look in?

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Aren’t the Masons a male only club? I never saw the appeal of it anyway, but I also don’t know a heck of a lot about it.

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m. thatcher (cough! phlegm! spittle!) belongs to a masonic lodge
although there are doubts as to whether she really is a woman

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Oh, brother…. Was it the Buffallo Lodge that Fred and Barney belonged to on the Flintstones? That’s what the Masons make me think of. Silly old men pretending to be mysterious magicians. Very Harry Potterish in a way, but not nearly as cute.

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No idea what goes on in either of these organisations—Masons or Buffs. The common story (I’m quite sure it’s not true) was that the Masons themselves had to be in the "buff" so to speak. This involved the "goat". 🙂

John

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Hmmm. Never heard of Buffs. Just Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Now there’s some real supernatural magic for you.

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Good heavens, I go home from work and look what you-all get up to while I’m gone! ;)
Thanks, everyone, who contributed.
Trevor, thanks for the list! I know I’m showing my ignorance here, but what it JC’s music database?
Jack, did you name your band that after a late-night carouse at the local Odd Fellow’s cemetary? ;)
Andee, sure wizards count, after 22 years with this guy I can tell you that you never know where a scrap of information will lead! And yes, Masonry is male-only, but no they don;t pretend to be wizards; it’s just an initiatory order, like the Odd Fellows and Knights of Pythias and dozens of other groups. Their sinister reputation is very overblown and mostly sh*te.
For those who haven’t heard about the masonic initiation, you have to take off one sock and shoe, roll up one trouser leg, and expose half of your chest (the latter being to prove you’re not a girl in reverse drag). How Mag the Nag got in I haven’t a clue, unless she belongs to one of the co-ed "side orders" (as they are called —- want fries with that?)
Ah, riding the goat. As an Odd Fellow, I can tell you about that. It has nothing (necessarily, that is) to do with nudity, and everything to do with 19th century hazing. My lodge was for a time in possession of a mechanical goat (nowe in a museum) —- looked like an ordinary stuffed goat on a sort of tricycle chassis. The initiate was put onto it and wheeled around the room. The tricky part is that the goat was geared to buck, quite vigorously, and the initiate would be blind-folded at the time. All productive of uproarious humor on the part of the onlookers! Also quite forbidden now, although I know one woman whose father rented a goat and tied it up outside the waiting room on the evening of her initiation so she could hear it bleat.Fred Flintstone was a member of the Loyal Order of Water Buffalo, btw. ;)
This is fun!
Sara

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Have fun, indeed. I’m calling it a day now, as far as The Session is concerned. Off to see the one and only Richard Thompson in concert. See you all tomorrow, folks.

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Sara, JC’s music database is my shorthand (sorry!) for "JC’s ABC Tune Finder", a link you’ll find here if you look up any tune.
Trevor

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Thanks, Trevor.
That’ll teach me not to keep putting off becoming ABC literate… Not to mention to troll this site more thoroughly! ;)
Sara

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An almost relevant quote from Breandan Breathnach’s ‘Folk music and Dances of Ireland’:

"It is nonsense to suppose that …. one may determine on hearing The Mason’s Apron whether a stonemason’s apron or a freemason’s apron is implied by the title."

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Since we’re off the plot anyway, if not off the planet, here’s a little story. A mate of mine used to play in a C&W band - they mainly played working men’s clubs, etc. One night he borrowed his father in law’s car to go to a gig, as his was out of action. On the way, they had a flat tyre and ended up being very late for the gig. When they finally arrived the guy charge was none to pleased, in fact, he was downright nasty - - - UNTIL he saw the Masonic key ring my mate just happened to be holding at the time (father in law’s) Well, he couldn’t have been nicer - would they like a bite to eat and a pint after all their difficulties, before they started setting up? How about The Mistaken Mason for a tune title?

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and don’t forget that well-known reel,’the sons of the desert’ played as a set with the laurel tree and hardyman the fiddler.

or else you could take a dip into robert graves’ ‘the white goddess’- you won’t find any tunes but you may discover if you’re a poet.or not.

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Frivolous and "harmless" though masonic lodges may be seen in other parts of the world, in Northern Ireland freemasonry is closely linked with Orange Lodges and Black Preceptories. To be a freemason in Northern Ireland is a political statement (after all the HQ in Covent Garden has royal patronage). Sinister reputation overblown … well maybe all that stuff about Rosicrucianism and cabbalism and riding the goat and stuff may be hyperbolic(s) … but an organisation with visible links to the Orange, the Black and the Ascendancy/Aristocracy is sinister enough for a lot of people’s taste.

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Sarah, what’s the connection between masons and druids as your husband sees it? Two totally different things don’t you think. When I think of druids I think of real magic and some conncection to the earth and cycles of the moon, nature, the stars. the forests, that kind of thing. Like Merlin or even Gandalf. But masons, I haven’t changed my opinion on, especially after what Aidan has to say about it.

Boy we are quite far afield with this discussion, I wouldn’t be surprised it Jeremy deletes it.

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I think Aidan’s assessment is similar to the situation in the west of Scotland - where parallel sectarianism runs rife, though not as lethal as in the north of Ireland.

Like this thread, masonry has no doubt been hijacked from its druidic origins to satisfy political and economic requirements.

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That’s an interesting and most lkely accurate take on it Danny. Any real magic or spirituality has been sucked out of it.

By the way Danny, I just e-mailed you hotel info!

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I read that Scottish Lodges allow women to be "members", (probably as they are expert in the use of aprons). In English lodges, on the other hand, you can work behind the bar (wearing an apron) but not be a member.

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Ah! So masons were druids were celts then, right?

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Where to start?
First, Jeremy, please have patience and give me a chance to answer some of the questions raised above. I know we’re waaaay off topic. After I’ve answered the questions I will creep back to my mouse burrow and not mention Masonry again, I promise!
Aidan, I’m sorry to hear thar Irish masonry has gotten into the septic swamp of politics. I didn’t know that. I should have been more specific; I was speaking of American masonry. In many American jurisdictions, the members must swear an oath to be loyal to their government and not permit their lodges to get involved in political activity. (I should mention that there is no international governing body of Masonry; each "jurisdiction", which may be a state or province, or may be an entire country, runs its own affairs and decides which other jurisdictions it recognizes as legitimate masonry.) In Europe I know this is not the case, and that at least historically European masonry has dabbled in some very ugly things indeed. I was simply trying to say that masons are not the grand international conspiratorial body they get talked up as. In the US, they’re a bunch of mostly elderly men trying to live good lives and do charitable works, or at least the masons I know are.
Andee, as far as I know my husband sees no connection between Masonry and Druidry. The ancent druids certainly were not masons, masonry didn’t exist until the Renaissance and by then the druids were long gone. Modern druids may be masons also, at least the males among them, but there is no necessary connection. I don’t think masonry arose out of druidry, ancient or modern, nor that masonry is in any sense celtic except in that it exists in "celtic" countries. In terms of my husband’s interest, it’s simply that since masonry and modern druidry are both, loosely speaking, fraternal orders, he’s interested in both. He’s also interested in Woodcraft, the Tribe of Ben Hur, The Owls, the Omaha Woodmen, and a large number of other fraternal societies (mostly now extinct). He has Asperger’s, and this is one of his Special Subjects.
For Jeremy’s sake, since the discussion has gone so far afield: I’d be happy to answer any other questions, or discuss things fraternal, OFF LIST. Please contact me via the lovely email feature on the site if you want to talk more about masonry, druidry, or anything else non-musical.
And again, thank you to everyone who contributed. My husband is delighted with the tune titles and leads for how to hunt for more.
Sara