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Thursday, 07 July, 2011

Old Time Mondegreens

Some anonymous old time music lover (maybe named Stephen Green) compiled some Mondegreens.

In the early 1990s, I was an archivist at a small college and had student assistants working with me. I asked the students to help logging tapes in the archives—essentially recordings of oldtime music. When I saw what some of the students were writing down from mishearing things on the tapes I began to collect their often amusing interpretations. For lack of anything better, I called these "anguished titles" after hearing about a book someone had written about the ways people were misusing English.

A few years later I was exchanging some emails with friends about this phenomenon, and was delighted when Bruce Baker forwarded me the following that he'd received from Keith Dunn.

A few examples:

  • Angel and a Baby - Angeline the Baker
  • Can't Come Back - The Cat Came Back
  • Cincinnati Gal -  Susannah Gal
  • Hen at the Springhouse - Hannah at the Springhouse
  • Mott The Camel - Martha Campbell
  • Sadie Rose - Shady Grove
  • Sugar on the Floor - Sugar in the Gourd

Check out his Projects page for lots of other good stuff. Here's a good one that led me to this site: Title, Text, and Tune Interrelations in American Fiddle Music. Well, AZJohnB might like it.


Posted in Banjo | Comments (11) | View recent posts