my lagan love/ john mccormack-1910. john mccormack had a long busy recording career which began in 1904 on wax cylinders. one tends to find a lot of his 78's thrifting around boston because of its large irish community- he was born in athlone, ireland and later became an american citizen. a large portion of his output consists of nationalistic irish songs. 'my lagan love' is still a very popular irish song set to a traditional tune. mccormack was the first singer to record it.
and yes, of course, kate bush perhaps does the best version of all(1985):
but sandy's no schlep- although the words here have been changed (by richard fariña, joan baez's once brother-in-law, who was cuban and irish), the tune is the same traditional one associated with 'my lagan love':
the quiet joys of brotherhood/ sandy denny- 1972.
our soul sistah, in more ways than one, dusty springfield ( née Mary Isobel Catherine Bernadette O'Brien)-1967.
and this isn't my lagan love, it's just a great fucking song. it hit just as the charleston was becoming all the rage circa 1925. billy jones and ernest hare were extremely popular radio performers aka as the happiness boys. they mostly recorded novelty songs usually addressing the numerous fads of a very fad crazy age. roll down your stockings and hit the floor:
it's quite shocking, these fashion fevers and native ritual costumes of the young. and the sight of bare thighs and knees- oh, dear.
roll 'em girls/ billy murray- 1925.
i found this 78 when we moved to my grandparents' house and insisted it be played incessantly:
when veronica plays the harmonica/ kay kyser & his orchestra with gloria wood , 1947.
who's yahoodi?/ kay kyser with lane truesdale, 1942.
and finally, i found this in the 78s stack with 'veronica and her harmonica '. they became my 2 favorite songs:
the teddy bear's picnic/ henry hall and his orchestra,circa 1930. i know this version is noisy but the cleaned up ones lack the same foreboding, eerie presence. too much sound has been removed making them flat and airless -just not as damn creepy as this version has always sounded to me. the stalking , marching music heightens the dichotomy between and outright weirdness of threatening children that they better stay out of the woods 'or else' with the sight of the happy frolicking dancing teddy bears. love that accent so unique to early sound recordings of english speaking singers and performers both american and british.