The Banff and Buchan Collection

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Tape 1994.001 transcription

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[TM] That's wonderful

[JT] Do you like it?

[TM] Yeah, it's good.

[JT] Do you like at?

[TM] Yeah, it's wonderful

[TM] Where did you get all those tunes?

[JT] At eh, at's jist eh, ye hear yer mither an father singing em.

[TM] Did you mother and father sing those songs?

[JT] Oh aye, there wis no music in those days ye see, there wis no music. The only music that we really heard mostly wis a gramaphone, ye were lucky tae hae a gramaphone, and eh, mebbe ma father played the pipes ye see, he played the pipes, and at wis maistly the music that we heard. And ye heard, the people wis aye singin, ye don't hear much folks singin at hame now, and my mither wis aye singing. Aye when she wis doin the work in the house you woulda heard her singin all the time she wis working. Jist singin at old fashioned songs. And I used tae sit and listen tae her, being disabled I nivver went out a lot. And I was always there with ma mither, and when I see her mebbe a day she stayed at home to get a bittie work in the house and she'd be, her sleeves'd be up and she would be going on scrubbin and cleanin the hoose, happy as a lark, happy, very very happy and singin those old songs. And I used tae sit and listen to her, and that's why I know them, that's why I know the old songs. And my grandfather he used to come in about, and you would, going away mebbe in the mornin, going away tae, tae his work and that, very very happy singin, always singin. And I heard a this old fashioned ancient songs, and I hid time tae sit and listen tae them. My sisters and brothers I don't think they know much of the old songs, because I was disabled and I wis aye at home.

[TM] They were running around outside.

[JT] Aye, they were more active than fit I wis. And I wis jist always at home wi ma mother, I didna need tae learn them I heard them every day! Every day I heard her singin, and then I begun to be interested in singin tae masel, but I never went away nowhere, I was young, and we had an old organ in the house. I used tae sit and play on the organ, oh. And then when I begun tae, at I could help ma mother and clean the house an that, in the afternoon when the work was all done I was happy, and I would play the organ and sing, my god, I never stopped singin. When I was four or five I was singin without a stop. I enjoyed it, it's great, it's a good life, a happy life, if ye take singin in yer life, it's a happy life, and if it's a happy person it's interested in singin, it's a good life. So I was quite happy wi ma singin, I was mebbe disabled, but I wisnae that I could dae nothing aboot a house, I could work in a house, I was active, though because I was a young girl I was active and I went on the crutches when I was quite young and did all my mother's work when she was out, and the only thing that I got, they couldna gie me nothin, I got ma bed and I got ma food and that, and mebbe a record, Jimmy Rogers. Laughs. And I was quite happy, I was very happy. And I'm still happy yet, I'm a happy go lucky person, I'm a very happy woman, always singin, it's my life, it's always been. But eh, I prefer now not going away, but just singin in ma house and anybody, I like people at's interested in ma singin and ma music. Ye will get a lot o people mebbe, and ye'll get some people who disnae like singin, disnae like the old songs.

[JT] Lots don't like the old songs

[TM] There's quite a lot of people don't yes.

[JT] And there's a lot of people love the old songs, and well, I'm happy when I'm amon people who like the old songs. Noo Clive likes at, he loved the songs. And eh, I could just learn you what I did tae him (laughs), I could learn ye tae march up and doon, mak on yer pla'in the pipes, and eh I could gie ye, I could learn ye tae sing in the old songs if ye were interested in at.

[TM] That would be great, I'd love to learn the Dowie Duns.

[JT] Weel I learned Clive at! And he's won quite a lot, he's won quite a lot at the festivals! The Dowie Dens o Yarrow. Oh my god. Well I'll put on a tape and ye'll hear it, and ye'll hear my singin, beautiful. But eh, I eh, sometimes I try and make a tape yet o masel, and the Dowie Dens o Yarrow and My Wee Doggie.

[TM] How does that one go, My Wee Doggie?

[JT] Oh it's beautiful.

[TM] What's that one. Is that 'with my dog and gun'?

[JT] Eh, no, no, it doesnae go wi a gun or nothin like at. It's just an old fashioned air, its an old fashioned song, and I play it now and again or sing it when I'm in the mood for singin. Ye've tae be in the mood for singin ye know, because if you're nae in the mood for singin ye'll nae mak a job o it. See. Yer heart has to be in it.

[TM] That's true.

[JT] Your heart has to be in the singin, see. And eh, yer heart his jist tae be in yer work and if it's nae there, ye're nae happy. And sometimes I'll see me, ach I'll jist hae a tune in ma, I'll try and mak a songie up and then I'll try and sing, and I'm nae in the mood, and I'll put it on tae see fit like, see. Well, I dinna like it, I'm nae singin right, I've nae sung right, I'm nae puttin ma heart intae it, I've got tae put ma heart intae ma singin. See. So, I'll learn ye a lot. Laughs.

[TM] Have you ever made a song?

[JT] Eh?

[JT] Yes I have made up three songs, and I never did nothing wi them. Beautiful songs. I made up a song about my son, o its a long time ago. And I tried tae make one up about the olden days, about the hills and dells, and everything when, jist, good old eh, eh, an old kind of air, tune to go with the song, and I've nivver done nothing aboot it.

[TM] Do you mind them now?

[JT] I hiv them aye, but I hinna done at like. So I made another song up about eh, this is the words o ma song that I, I'll just gie ye the first bittie o.

I've jist cam hame tae see a ma freens, I've come tae see ye's a We'll hae a guid auld hearty nicht afore I ging awa O the neighbours they a came flockin in, they kissed ma een an a They said I wis lookin affa weel, hansome bonny and bra So I've jist came hame tae see a ma freens, I've come tae see ye's a We'll dance and drink the ??? a nicht, afore I gang awa

[JT] But there's a lot of verses see, I never look at it, I made at up masel. I often mak up verses. I used tae be affa for that. But I dinna, I dinna dae it sae much like, now, but I used til. I'll see me raisin oot o ma bed thinkin on a tune or a air, or words for a song, I've seen me writin down, come oot ma bed and write it doon. And then anither thing'll come in ma heid again, up again and write again, and a ma cards up ere, I've a ma songs that I ken. I've christmas cards and cards that I've got from my family like, when they were away, and now they live here now ye see, and I've all my songs, my old songs, and the hill billy songs, a written oot onto paper, everything in this house has got writing, writing all ma songs. And then, a song'll come in ma heid noo, cause I'll forget mebbe on a song that I hinna heard for a long time, and I'll think, this'll come in ma heid, and I'll think oh my goodness fan did ever I hear that song again, I think my god, I'll hae tae write it doon, cause I winna mine at again.

[TM] That's right.

[JT] And then I write's it doon. And I think oh my god, it's a good job, I've written it doon now, I'll mine and I'll try start and singin it. I used tae sing at long ago. Laughs. At's the wey o me! And everything in the house there's songs on, written, and I'll look at a ma songs ower there, and they're a ontae the cards on the back o the cards, and eh, I'll sit doon sometimes, ma piana's needin tunin ye see, I'll eh hae tae get it tuned an a. And eh, I'll look at a ma songs, and oh ma god fan did I ever play at. It's years ago since I played that. Oh my.

[TM] But you must have played it cause there it is.

[JT] Eh?

[TM] You must have played it cause there it is, written down?

[JT] Oh aye! It's a written doon, at's what I do. And I forget a song long ago, fen I wis jist a young girl ken, and my father loved tae hear me singin. And we used tae hae a this hill billy songs and in that days it wis the hill billy songs at I liked. Ken I used tae hear ma mother singin the aul sangs richt enough and I kent them by heart, because we'd brought up wi that, brought up wi that. But I liked the hill billy songs, I liket Jimmy Rogers, Gracie Fields I liked her, but Jimmy Rogers wis my favourite. And on guitar he made, I dae ken I hear a guitar like yon, a different tone altogether.

[TM] Oh he was good.

[JT] Oh what a good. Have you got a records o him?

[TM] I've heard him on the radio.

[JT] Hiv ye. Is is the old Jimmy Rogers, I think there's two Jimmy Rogers.

[TM] Are there? I've heard the old one certainly.

[JT] It's the older Jimmy Rogers aye, well I likit him, and he guitar (makes noise) and he kinda, my god, and good. And I says tae ma ma, oh get me a Jimmy Rogers record. Now I learned the songs off the record, and eh, I've seen ma father coming in on a Seturday night my dad, and mebbe he took a beer now and again, nae a lot ma dad. And he'd say 'Oh Jeanie, go and find Jimmy Rogers, sing Blue Moon tae me'! And my god ma father loved it. Singin Blue Moon and Little Golden Locket. Never heard at een!

[TM] How does that one go?

I've a little golden locket.
I still keep it in my pocket
A souvenir that money couldn't buy
And the one I love to wore it
That's how I adore it
And I'll keep it to my dying day

True love, true love
Why did you go away
And that little golden locket
I still keep it in my pocket
A souvenir that money couldn't buy
And the one I love she wore it
That's how I adore it
There I'll keep it to my dying day

[JT] And then he yodels. Yodels. Oh, well that's one of Jimmy Rogers ones, and I ken quite a lot o them. And that's the record that I gaed in for, I never used tae sing the old songs when I was younger, I heard them too often, and I never used tae sing much o them when I was younger, it was aye Jimmy Rogers. Beautiful songs

[TM] When did you start singing the old songs?

[JT] I started singin when eh, I started mebbe singin mebbe when I was roon aboot ma, aboot mebbe, mebbe aboot when I was aboot, I'd been aboot mebbe, oh I could sing them onywey ony time but, it was aye, it was always the Jimmy Rogers cowboy songs I liked most of all. And then I started getting interested in the old songs fen I'd been aboot fifteen, sixteen, year aul, seventeen and mindin on my mither's songs and ma grandfather's songs an at, and the memories is there, and I get carried away now, whenever I play mebbe. I've got a tape o ma mither singin and masel singin. It's a roon tape ye see, and that wis tooken a gey while ago. Ma mither and me, I'd gaed ower one day, ma mother had a piana in her hoose, and I hid a piana in my hoose. And ma mum wis in the house hersel and I started playin the piano, and I started the old song, ye know, poor thing she was singing along wi me, she were happy as a lark, what a happy, baith o us. So I hiv a tape, and I put on till it tae ken the tape, me an my mother is on it, in the background and the both o us singin the gither. My mother died, she wis 86, and that wis aboot, canna min foo long ago at is. Oh, a good while ago onywey she died. And eh, I've still got the tape o ma mither. Aye, and I hinna a tape o ma dad though, ma dad played the fiddle and the pipes. So music was the only thing at eh, interested me. I wis disabled it's
an affa handicap for me wis it, to go wi crutches. But I worked wi ma mother and I wis happy and if I hidnae had ma music and ma singin an at. I never got nae learnen, cos my mother couldnae afford it. I learned masel. Hiv ye ever heard o old Davie Stewart, old Davie Stewart that used tae be the singer.

[JT] Never, na

[TM] Did anyone ever teach you?

[JT] Naebody teached me

[TM] You just picked it up?

[JT] I jist learned it masel, I hid the ear for music ye see.

[TM] That's wonderful.

[JT] You see some folk that have no ear, they canna keep the tune of a song.

[TM] Well I can keep a tune going and I can remember a tune, but I can't play it on an instrument.

[JT] Aye, but ye. I've played music since I wis a quinie, aboot eh, I'd been aboot eh eleven, twelve year aul fen I started playin anything.

[TM] So you just picked it up?

[JT] I jist picked it up aye, once ye started, it's easy, ye will learn, ye're nae ower learn tae learn yet, ye could learn a bit. See. So eh, music's been my life and singin and at. But eh, I like the accordion, and en sometimes, I hid an affa interest in accordion a while ago, but this hoose, I wis nae weel in this hoose ye see. I wis ill.

[TM] This house.

[JT] Aye, the hoose in the winter time, it's a cold house in the winter time and it got me down an affa long, it got me doon and I've been ill this two winters. The last winter I was very nearly a gonner, I was very very ill. And this year now I hid that affa flu. But I'm aright now

[TM] Mm I had it as well.

[JT] Hid you it an a? Oh what a flu it is. I was really nae weel is winter an a, but last winter I wis worse. I've hin the doctor since ever I come to this house, it doesnae agree wi me, I don't know, it's just a cold kind of house, and a dark house, I like a light house, mair light in't. But eh, some days I'll just say, oh I'm gaen awa tae hae a tune o ma accordion, now, and then sometimes I'll hae a tune o the organ ower there, that's an electric organ. Fin it's the harmonium here that I sing along wi. I sing wi that een. See. So that's the one that I sing wi. I'll let ye hear me sing ower there, at lovely song. And it's a kinda hillbilly an a ye see. But I'll let ye hear this one.


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