Robert Leng and Jossy 'Pop' Mainprize, with Jim Eldon

Songs and Tales from Flamborough Head

Musical Traditions Records MTCD203

1 - Roll the Old Chariot;  2 - A Thunnerin' Sort of a Lie;  3 - Wreck of the Brownlow and Walmo;  4 - Jolly Old Ploughboy;  5 - Windy Old Weather;  6 - Flamborough Sword Dance Song;  7 - Happy Young Man / I was in it;  8 - Opening Time at Thornwick;  9 - Heave Away the Trawl Warp;  10 - Pull for the Shore;  11 - Grace Darling;  12 - Where's Tha Been Lad?;  13 - Good Luck to the Barleycorn;  14 - Oh Where is my Boy Tonight?;  15 - A Thunnerin' Sort of a Lie;  16 - Father's first day at sea;  17 - Pigs, parsons and nuns;  18 - A naked light & Jenny Gallows' pond;  19 - The ghost ship;  20 - Earlie in the Morning;  21 - Dogs and poachers;  22 - The white gull;  23 - The big white bird and the minister;  24 - Grandad and the work lantern;  25 - A Thunnerin' Sort of a Lie.
Robert Leng and Pop Mainprize were befriended by the inimitable musician and collector Jim Eldon thirty years ago, during his time as a pleasure cruise entertainer on the Yorkshire coast.  The two fishermen, long married to the sea but firmly down to earth, sing in unison songs of fishing and of shipwrecks, sentimental and comic pieces, plus the seamen's favourite Sankey and Moody hymn, Pull For The Shore, clearly enjoying every moment.

Song historians will relish their interestingly different versions of Roll The Old Chariot and The Scarlet And The Blue, and especially their party piece, A Thunnerin' Sort Of A Lie - a salty variation on the tall tale trope best known in The Derby Ram.  As a bonus, Jim Eldon leads off Windy Old Weather and Heave Away The Trawl Warp with fiddle to the fore.  The last quarter of an hour is taken up with stories and reminiscences: a young man's first day at sea, poaching, and odd fishermen's superstitions - it was bad luck to mention pigs, carry a naked light or cross the path of a nun, apparently!  Folk song in its natural habitat, and all the better for it.

Brian Peters - 7.3.19
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