“Bad Lads And Hard Cases” by Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger - album review

TJR says

An album which is thematically linked on subject matter which has fascinated readers and listeners for centuries; the wrong doings of ne'er-do-wells, scoundrels and murderers! Within, there are ballads about the hard-living, hard-riding and hard-fighting outlaws; just why do we, so often, deem these to be swaggering heroes? To Greek tragedy proportions, there are ballads about crimes of passion. On the flipside, there are songs of confession and remorse; we learn that these have been popular for over 400 years, only waning in more recent times as public executions died out. The element of protest is strong in the transportation ballads, and we also get songs describing prison life in Britain, and we come to realise that these are distinct from the convict group songs of U.S. southern prisons and state-farms. The album works well throughout, with rarely a dull moment. Best on side 1 is “Go Down You Murderer”, one of two self-penned pieces in the set, as Ewan tackles the case of Timothy John Evans, who was convicted for the murder of his wife and child as recently as 1953. Similarly, another topical offering, “The Ballad Of Bentley And Craig” stands out on side 2, a real-life tale set in 1951, about 2 delinquents and a murdered policeman. These tales are timeless though, and the set ends splendidly with “Gilderoy”, a song which tells of a Perthshire freebooter who paid for his crimes via the gallows in July, 1638. It's an album which makes you feel dirty; I'm not convinced with Ewan's often sympathetic tones, and some of these characters, although morbidly engaging, are repulsive upon second thought. I enjoyed it, though. Sicko.

The Jukebox Rebel
17-Apr-2018

A1 [03:26] 6.5.png Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger - Turpin Hero (Traditional) Folk
A2 [03:48] 6.9.png Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger - Spence Broughton (Traditional) Folk
A3 [02:10] 6.8.png Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger - Ivor (Traditional) Folk
A4 [04:33] 6.4.png Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger - The Bonnie Banks Of Airdrie (Traditional) Folk
A5 [01:25] 6.3.png Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger - Superintendent Barratt (Thurso Berwick) Folk
A6 [00:53] 5.3.png Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger - Barratty-Parratty (Thurso Berwick) Folk
A7 [03:38] 7.7.png Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger - Go Down You Murderer (Ewan MacColl) Folk
A8 [04:59] 6.5.png Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger - Van Diemen’s Land (Traditional) Folk
B1 [02:01] 6.9.png Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger - Whiskey In The Jar (Traditional) Folk
B2 [03:31] 7.1.png Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger - Bill Brown (Traditional) Folk
B3 [03:13] 6.2.png Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger - The Banks Of The Royal Canal (Traditional) Folk
B4 [03:57] 6.7.png Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger - The Black Velvet Band (Traditional) Folk
B5 [01:53] 6.8.png Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger - Hard Case (Ewan MacColl) Folk
B6 [03:12] 7.9.png Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger - The Ballad Of Bentley And Craig (Carl Dallas) Folk
B7 [03:25] 6.9.png Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger - Treadmill Song (Traditional) Folk
B8 [04:19] 7.3.png Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger - Gilderoy (Traditional) Folk




care-to-share.png

if-so-thanks.png
© The Jukebox Rebel 2005-2020 All Rights Reserved