The Banff and Buchan Collection

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Tape 1994.005 transcription

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[Music playing.]

This is a song called Belfast City. It's about boys and girls fancying each other. Remember that? Pass along the maracas! Now for this one we want to let all the cows outside that you are having a good time! [Laughs.]

I'll tell me Ma when I go home
The boys won't leave the girls alone
They pulled me hair and they stole me comb
Well that's all right till I go home
She is handsome She is pretty
She is the Belle of Belfast city
She goes courting one, two, three
Please won't you tell me who is she.

Albert Mooney says he loves her
All the boys are fighting' for her
They knock at the door and they ring at the bell
Saying "Oh my true love are you well"
Out she comes as white as snow,
rings on her fingers bells on her toes
Old Johnny Murray says he'll die
If she doesn't get the fella with the roving eye.

Let the wind and the rain and the hail blow high
And the snow comes tumbling from the sky
She's as nice as apple pie,
She'll get her own lad by and by
When she gets a lad of her own,
She won't tell her Ma when she comes home
Let them come as they will
For it's Albert Mooney she loves still.

I'll tell me Ma when I go home
The boys won't leave the girls alone
They pulled me hair and they stole me comb
Well that's all right till I go home
She is handsome She is pretty
She is the Belle of Belfast city
She goes courting one, two, three
Please won't you tell me who is she.

[Applause.] Thank you very much.

[CB] That was grand. Now boys, I've a jobbie for ye. Ken, Ian, ye'll be accustomed tae gaen oot jotters. Ian gie oot the pencils and pens and see abody his a bit o paper. We're going to play musical consequences. You remember the big idea from last year, that, it's entirely new, it's a new sequence. [Lots of background chatter.]

Miss B at such and such a place, he said to her, she said to him, he gave her, she gave him, write the consequence was and the world said. So all together you have 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10, 10 tunes and in the tune there is the clue, for example if the first one was like this [hums tune]. I know it's awful but what would it have been. Oh, I didn't know it was that awful. It would have been Robin Adair, oh come on Charlie you knew it was Robin Adair. So if Robin Adair met [hums] - Mary o Argyll. O you are a friend yes!

OK then, this is the gentleman's name and the clue of course is in the tune.

[Plays tune.] Have you got it then? Do you want more? Have you got it? Alright that particular gentleman met.

[Plays tune.] Right, so that was the lad met the lass. Are you all ready to move on to the location, as to where they met? Alright then.

[Plays tune.] Mairi's Wedding. So that's where they met. Take your time. Right. Doesn't really matter. The spelling doesn't really matter, it can be as phonetic as you like. So he met her at the certain place, and he said to her.

[Plays tune.] A little more difficult perhaps. And she said to him, rather predictably.

[Plays tune.] Oh stop yer ticklin Jock. Give them it again Grace! I see, what a nicht we're haein! with or without ladies. [loud laughter.] Alright then, that was very kind of me. And he gave her, the blighter…

[Plays tune.] A wee Doch an Doris [A wee Deoch an Doruis]. There's a ??. Right ok, that's what he gave her, she reciprocated in kind.

[Plays tune.] Aye though, mm hm.

And the consequence inevitably was.

[Plays tune.] The dark, the dark, he kissed me in the dark. That was a great one of the great Andy Stewart's. And er, the consequence was, oh that was the consequence, aye aye. And the world said.

[Plays tune.] Another Andy Stewart one. Haste Ye Back.

[CB] Alright then, have you all completed.

[?? ] I think we should hae number four again. Is there two tunes tae that song.

[Tune player] It's actually a fast tune. [Plays it again fast.]

[CB] Right boys and girls, change papers. [Laughs.] Alright. And eh, I need, I need hardly remind you that the umpires decision is final. Alright then just give them a few bars of the first one.
[Tune plays.] I'll wed ye tae ma youngest son, and ye shall be his bride, and ye shall be his bride lady. [all singing together.] Alright then, and than romantic gentleman met. Now, ye're tae say ye've ??? again, and ye'll sing and a wee bit o community. So that's Jock o Hazeldean met.

[Tune plays.] ???? [all singing together.] Oh yer a great lot. So that's Jock o Hazeldean met Annie Laurie at a convivial gathering.

[Tune plays.] Step we gaily on we go, heel for heel and toe for toe, arm in arm and row on row. All for Mairi's wedding… [all singing together.] Step we gaily on we go, heel for heel and toe for toe, arm in arm and row on row. All for Mairi's wedding. So Jock o Hazeldean met Annie Laurie at Mairi's wedding. And he said to her, right.

[Tune plays.] The nicht's gan tae fa, caul blast a drift in the sna, sit doon beside me, there's a ??? lassie believe for ?? That' s it, ye've the right idea. So, he said to her, come under ma plaidie, with predictable results. She said to him.

[Tune plays.] Stop yer ticklin jock, stop yer ticklin jock. [Singing all together.] Will ye stop yer ticklin, tickle, ickle, icklin, stop yer ticklin jock. So to calm her down he gave her down one of the oldest sedatives and tranquilizers in the world. He gave her…

[Tune plays.] Just a wee doch and doris, just a wee doch and dorris afore ye gang awa, there's a wee wifie waitin in the wee but and ben, if ye can say it's a braw bricht moonlicht nicht, then ye're aricht ye ken. And we all ken, and we all can, and we're all richt. So she gave him, o very generously.

[Tune plays.] Silver Tassie [singing together.] Aye, that was a great, and she gave him then a pint of wine. Right. And the consequence was. When first I courted Jeanie, I tried we micht and main tae get a puckle siller and a hoosie o ma ane. Ilky nicht I gaed tae see it be it late or be it murk, and when she cam tae meet me I went ???. The dark, the dark, she kissed me in the dark. Ae nicht I went tae see her and ma Jeanie bein fae hame, I slipped tae the windae and I rattled on the pane, look o Jeanie's mither and a nicht at bein sae dark,…. The dark, the dark she kissed me in the dark. And they were such a popular couple that the world said.

[Tune plays.] Haste Ye Back [singing together.] So then. Jock o Hazeldean met Annie Laurie at Mairi's wedding, he said to her come under ma plaidie, she said to him stop her ticklin jock, he gave her the wee doch and doris, she gave him a pint of wine, the consequence was kissing in the dark and the world said haste ye back. You've all got ten out of ten haven't you? Okay.

[CB] Gordon has one of the sweetest ear players that I have ever heard. And Gordon and I are great pals until it comes to the late Jean Stewart's composition of the ??? I maintain that it is a strathspey, Gordon says it's a 6/8 march. Aye. Well anyway that's for another night.

[GE] It's definitely nae a strathspey. [a lot of background chatter.]

[CB] We have a good half hour of mirth and jollity yet. Gordon always observes that golden rule, never start until ye're ready. [Laughs.]

[GE] Weel, is is a tune when the heather bloom (excuse me I'm a bit chunky kin), when the heather blooms in mornin. Alec Brown, fae Strichen, ye ken Alec Broon fae the garage. He composed this tune oh mebbe sixty years ago, and I played it tae Mr Burnie eens or twice and he said michty that's a fine tune, it deserves words. So this is the words he composed tae'll it, tae the tune. I'll hae tae think noo efter tellin ye a that story.

Oh there's the bonnie banks o Lomond, and Max Welton's bonnie braes
And the hills alang the Boddam side is one the minstrels praise.
But the ??? swarths o Mormon bears the ???? them a
When the heather blooms in Mormon and a the braes are braw

Tak the braes o Killicrankie and the wids o Craigie Lea
The birks o Aberfeldy and the Royal banks o Dee
But doon the harks o Ugie, the scented breezes blaw
When the heather blooms on Mormon, the hills she looks sae braw

Noo, they say that Ben MacDhui is at twa, three thoosan high
The braes o lofty Cuillins in the misty Isle o Skye
But I wouldnae change my Mormon for the splendid heichts of a
When the heather blooms on Mormon, the hills she looks sae braw

Noo come on a ye coothie Buchan folk, come ben and gether roon
I've made ye up a sang till a guid aul fiddle tune
And hope this finds ye cheery and guid fortune ye be fa
When the heather blooms on Mormon, may a yer braes be braw


[CB] That's very sweet of you Gordon.

[GE] I think at's marvellous words.

[CB] I like it, being the song writer. Thank you Grace. Now Gordon's going to follow that through by… That was Alec Broon, a lovely composition. It's nice to know that there are composers in Buchan, that there have been, that there are, and I'm sure from what you've heard tonight, you'll agree with me there will be. Gordon.

[GE] Now, we've neglected Burns, so here's ???, so sing along ok?

[Plays fiddle along with piano. Audience join in singing. Applause.]

[CB] Thank you very much Gordon and thank you Grace. And now we are pulling along back to contribute to the ceilidh, or conversatione, some of the older people, I'm not quite sure exactly the form that a conversatione took, but we'll maybe be enlightened before we say goodnight. Did I say it was Alan that we were bringing forward.

[Alan] Gie ye a touch o the Doric.

It wisnae his wite he wis bedded sae late and him wi sey muckle tae dae
The rubbits tae mate and the fulky tae game and the hens tae hash intae the ree
The masons meer sine he set up in the close and cowpit the ladle foo keen
And rooner up foons with the lay ??? lay tacky wi the licht o the meen
So he raided his pooches and coonted his eggs,

So he raided his pooches

[CB] Coonted his bools! [Laughs.]

Took a yerlins fower eggs fae his bonnet and fegs fen ??? ???
But forth come his mither and cried on him.

I've been a….

[CB] Yer a' richt.

There'll be nae word o this in the mornin ma lad,
but it wisna his wite he wis late.
Oh hae no hum he wis raxin himsel
and rubbin his een when he rase,
And far wis his beets and far wis his bunnet,
fa hid been touchin his claes?

Ach his porridge wis caul, they'd forgotten the saut,
there wis ower muckle meal in the tap.
Wis this a the buttermilk, far wis the speen,
and fa had been bitin his back.

Ach his pints wisnae tied and the backs o his lugs
knowed some sma attention as weel
But it wisnae he's gaed on the Sabbath ye ken
and onything daes for the skweel
Wi his piece in his pooch he got roadit at last,
wi his buiks and his ?? and slate.
Gaen awa, get awa, in the kitchy wis sla,
weel it wisnae his wite he wis late.

The fite first got ca't wi her tail in the air,
con?? as far as the barn
Syne munchin his piece he set aff wi his leen,
though nae very willin I'd warran.
The cairt road wis dubby, the track through the wid
although mebbe langer wis best,
But fen loupin the dyke a steen chackert flew oot
and he hunted a file for her nest.

Syne he cloded wi yowies, a squirrel he sa,
teetin oot fae the back o a tree
And jinked the gamie oot, teenin his girns,
a ragey aul billie was he.
A' this wis a hin'er and up the moss side
he run oot siccan a rate,
But he fell in the heather and barkit his shins,
so it wisnae his wite he wis late.

Astride o a whin, ??? ?? he sat,
and ??? for rosit tae cha,
Till a ??? ser frichened run trailin a wing,
fair cheepers the ?? him awa.
He cried on the dryster when passin the mull,
got a lunt o his pipe and a news,
And his oxter pooch managed wi shielins tae full,
a treat tae take him till his doos.

Syne he waded the lade and crept under the brig
tae hear the gigs thuner abeen,
And a rodent plumped in and gaed swimmin awa
afore he could gither a steen.
Syne he hovered ??? o foggie bee's bike,
nae far fae the mole catcher's gate
And the skweel it wis in ???? his ??? ,
so it wisnae his wite he wis late.

He tried on his taes tae creep ben till his seat,
but the snuffy aul Dominie sa.
Snek there on his desk, like a wiver that waits
for a flea in his woven ??.
He telt o his tummel, but fit wis the eese,
wi the mannie in sick an aul taen,
But ach, it wis a ??? wi a ??? tae hauns
that were hard as a steen.

Now ??? had grotten it's bawly he kent,
foo crouse a' the lasses would cra,
For the mornin afore he'd scattered their lems
and done doon a their hoosies an a'.
Wi a bally tae hooey[?] though, seen he got ower,
the wey he'd been haundled a fate
It wis cruel still and all, tae be walloped and all,
when it wisnae his wite he wis late.


[CB] Well done, Alan we enjoyed that. That's a really cross section of aul farrant, North East words. Well done Alan. Now Charlie, eh, will you come and oblige us again please. Very pleased to have you with us.

[CT] Now, I'll gae ye een. I canna min if I did is een tae ye afore or no, but, Charlie would you help wi is een noo if I go wrong.

A farmer's dog once came tae town, his Christian name was Pete
His pedigree was ten yards long, his looks were hard to beat
And as he wandered down the street, twas wonderful to see
He's markin every corner and he's markin every tree
He worked at every gateway, he didn't miss a post
For piddlin was his masterpiece, jist piddlin wis his boast

The city dogs they all looked on with deep and jealous rage
Envious of this simple dog, the piddler of the age
They sniffed him over one by one, they sniffed him two by two
But mighty Pete in high disdain stood still till they were through
They sniffed him over one by one, their praise for him was high
And when one sniffed him underneath, Pete piddled in his eye

Then just to show the city dogs he didnae give a damn
He went into the grocer's shop and he piddled on the ham
Piddled on the onions and piddled on the floor
And when the grocer kicked his bum he piddled on the floor.

[CT] This cairries on for iver more, but I canna ???

Pete an exhibition gave with all the fancy ways tae piddle
With double drips and funcy clips and now and again a dribble.
Well all this time the city dogs.

[CT] Fit is't now. Laughs. Charlie.

[CB] Aye? Come on Charlie necessity is the mother of invention!

[CT] The city dogs said, so long Pete ,you really did defeat us
But mighty Pete.

Fit wis't now.

But I'll tell ye! He hid diabetes. Laughs.

Now this is een, I think we wis the gither is nicht Gordon, it wis up in Strichen. And I started is, and there wis a mannie in the audience, it wisnae Charlie, and I stuck and he telt me far I gaed wrang. And at the end he stood up and he says ' Now did you say it wis Jimmy Logan', and I says yes, and he said 'well it wasn't it wis Harry Gordon at wrote at song' So this is a song o Harry Gordon.

Oh, fan first I come tae the toon for tae stop,
I started oot in business in a side street shop
Tae the kirk every Sunday I gaed twice as a rule,
and coonted the collection at the Sunday School
But ma greatest ambition it wis ye see,
tae tell a little story at the kirk soiree.

Well my great chance come and losh preserve us,
I couldna say us for I felt at nervous
I thocht upon a limerick, and I thocht upon a riddle,
but I started wi a story sine I stoppit in the middle
For the story that I started wis not you see,
the kind ye can tell at a Kirk soiree.

Well after at nicht all the men would stop
for the finish o ma story in my side street shop
An ma business grew so rapidly and so did my renown,
that soon I was elected tae the council of the town
For they made me the convener o the sewage committee,
for the story at I started at the church soiree.

Noo when I become a magistrate, promotion proved ma ruin


[CB] It rhymes with undoing, ruin and undoin.

[CT] Noo when I become a magistrate, promotion proved ma ruin.

Fit happened till him again

[CB] The sentence that I pronounced proved tae be my undoin. Aye, at'll dae.

[CT] My minds gone a blank.

[CB] Ye ken Robbie Burns motto, never despair. But you see now, the plot o Charlie's song unfolds, now here's the mannie, he's on the bench,

[CT] Aye, and he's awa tae fine his freen, for tellin the story at he telt at the church soiree.

[CB] Aye a freen o his accosted a constable you know, that kind of thing. Ye see what I'm going to say

[CT] At's exactly what I wis gan tae say.

[CB] The constable, wis a staunch wee free. Now you take it from there.

[CT] For objectionable conduct I'd tae try a freen o mine,
and gie him seven days wi'oot the option o a fine
For he went and telt the bobby a staunch wee Free,
the story at I started at the kirk soiree.

Noo I retired fae public life a disappointed man,
wi ma ??? twisted tellin stories oot ahin ma haun
And mony years his passed since nature gave me such a knock
But jist the ither day I received an awfae shock
Fen the minister's youngest daughter, at her father's jubilee
Telt the story that I started at the kirk soiree.

Laughs. [Applause.]

[CT] Is is anither een, ma wife aye says 'oh no, nae again'.

Oh Maggie Ann o Clachnabrochan once said to herself
You're getting on in years ma dear, you'll soon be on the shelf
But if you could marry Calum Begg, who drives the grocer's van
'Twould be the very thing to cheer the heart of Maggie Ann.

Now Callum Begg wis musical he knew his do ray me
O the dues had ??? when the melodian he played wi the greatest o ease
Tae start a choir in Clachnacudden, just the very plan
And so thought everybody else, and so did Maggie Ann.

Now the Clachnabroch Gaelic choir it soon won great renown
At singing high and singin low they were neither up nor down
Tae win some prizes at the Mod they now began tae plan
Until tae join the choir one night along came Maggie Ann.

Oh they tried her in the alto and they tried her in the bass
They tried her in the soprano, she wis jist a fair disgrace
Her voice devoid of rhythm sounded like a rusty can
So they thought up all the different ways to get rid of Maggie Ann.

They said that she should join the WRENS before it was too late
They'd pay her fare to Canada and she would emigrate
Some said that Callum Begg should knock her over with his van
But nothing that they said or did would budge big Maggie Ann.

But fate decreed that Maggie Ann would vex the choir no more
For a lad she had long years ago proposed from Singapore
And when she went away tae wed that gallant man
The choir all sang, hip hip hooray, farewell to Maggie Ann.

[CT] Now, afore I sit doon, I'm gan tae enlighten Charlie aboot something I didnae realise. Did you say you lived in Islay, Charlie, for three years.

[CB] Yes I did

[CT] I lived in Islay for a while as well. So we're both half highland together [island accent.]

[CB] Thank you Charlie that was great. And what a lovely night we've had. We're just on count down now. We've talked about teachers, bitties of paper and pens and so on. How would you translate the following dialogue into English? Now you just imagine two people meet and they have a short chat. 'Fit like'. 'Oh nae that all, but I didna sleep sair'. 'Fit ails ye like'. 'There's an affa stoon in ma queets'. 'O puir stock'. 'A bit there's nithin comin ower me ye ken'. 'No, no, just makin meen tae yersel'. How would you make that into English. No prizes for the answer. It's been, it really has been a wonderful evening, there's not many, there's not many evenings like this nowadays. I mean that. When the concert party got together for the few minutes prior to starting this programme, we said let's enjoy ourselves. If we enjoy ourselves the chances are that the audience will enjoy themselves too. I think our theory has been proved correct. Yes? [Applause.] Now as the finale, we are putting our good friends the Belly Band in again. So this is the finale, respond to them as you have. We are awfully grateful to you boys, they go out a lot you know to entertain. We're, och, I canna find the words, and I'm nae tryin tae be ??? And we'll see ye the morn's nicht, they're gan tae ??? the morn's nicht ye ken! Laughs. Righto then boys. Thank you very much. In the mean time if you would pass your pencils and pens to the end of the tables.

This is 'A Man's a man for a that' I hope you don't know the words. It's great tae see folk forgettin the words.

Is there for honest Poverty
That hings his head, an' a' that;
The coward slave-we pass him by,
We dare be poor for a' that!

For a' that, and a' that.
The coward slave an' a' that,
The rank is but the guinea stamp,
The Man's the gowd for a' that.

For though on hamely fare we dine,
Wear hoddin grey, an' a that;
Gie fools their silks, and knaves their wine;
A Man's a Man for a' that.

For a' that, and a' that,
Their tinsel show, and a' that;
The honest man, tho' e'er sae poor,
Is king o' men for a' that.

Ye see yon birkie, ca'd a lord,
Wha struts, an' stares, an' a' that;
Tho' hundreds worship at his word,
He's but a coof for a' that.

For a' that, an' a' that,
His ribband, star, an' a' that:
The man o' independent mind
He looks an' laughs at a' that.

A king can mak a belted knight,
A marquis, duke, and a' that;
But an honest man's aboon his might,
Gude faith, he maunna fa' that!

For a' that, and a' that,
Their dignities and a' that;
The pith o' sense, and pride o' worth,
Are higher rank than a' that.

Then let us pray that come it may,
As come it will for a' that,
That sense and worth, o'er a' the earth,
Shall bear the gree, and a' that.

For a' that, and a' that,
It's coming yet for a' that,
That Man to Man, the world o'er,
Shall brothers be for a' that.

Come on Gordon, gie us a jig or a reel. [GE plays.]

[CB] At's the stuff. Athegither.


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