Thursday, August 2, 2012

Just Another Day of Searching

Before I was born, my parents were hugely into the whole Folk Rock scene. Y'know, Lindesfarne, The Dubliners, The Searchers, The Seekers, Fairport Convention, and Steeleye Span. Especially Steeleye
Span. Not only was my childhood easy-listening largely on the theme of Murder, Cuckoos (yeah, I know what that means now) and Elves, but I even had the Folk Rock Nursery Songs by Tim Hart (of Steeleye Span) And Friends. Whilst other kids were learning about Humpty Dumpty and the hazards of wall-climbing without adequate safety gear, I was singing along to the Three Jolly Rogues Of Lynn:

    In good King Arthur's day
    When we served under the King
    Lived a miller and a weaver and a little tailor
    Three jolly rogues of Lynn.

    Now the miller he stole corn
    And the weaver he stole yarn
    And the little tailor he stole broadcloth
    For to keep those three rogues warm

    Now the miller was drowned in his dam
    And the weaver was hanged in his yarn
    And the devil put his claw on the little tailor
    With the broadcloth under his arm

    Now the miller still drowns in his dam
    And the weaver still hangs in his yarn
    And the little tailor he skips through hell
    With the broadcloth under his arm

Of course, murderous rhymes for kiddies weren't all. This was the 1980s, when things like The Hunting Of The Snark were being made into musical concept albums. One of my favourite LPs as a child was The King of Elfland's Daughter - based on the rather cool book of the same name, written by Lord Dunsany. The book has a lovely whimsical sense of humour running throughout - there's one point where a troll (not that one) tries to convince a child to run away to Elfland. In the end the child refuses to go because "Mother made a jam roll this morning." Anyway, the musical version was the brain-child of Steeleye Span members Bob Johnson and Peter Knight, and featured a number of jaunty songs about killing, kidnap and elves. It also featured Christopher Lee as the King of Elfland (and the narrator), which I think was an early try-out for his role as Saruman. In the finest of Folk-rock concept album traditions it had a couple of songs one could hum along with, weird sound effects, solemn declaiming of lines, and some mediocre filler pieces.

I merely mention all this, because one of the wimpiest, most forgettable songs from TKoED was titled "Just another day of searching", and it would upset me to think that people might not get the terribly clever, delightfully obscure reference in the title of this blog post.

Anyway, according to the stats, the search-terms which most commonly bring people to this website (excluding the name of the blog, and its derivatives) are:

4: "All Things Pyrate"
3: "Defenestration Images"
2: "Duck soteltie" (which is interesting, because there is no duck soteltie on these pages)
...and in first place,
"Curse of Cain"

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