Hey Boys Up Go We (1)

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HEY, BOYS, UP GO WE [1]. English, Country Dance Tune (6/8 time). C Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). ABB (Karpeles, Raven, Sharp): AABB (Barnes). The tune dates to 1679 when it was published in John Playford's Dancing Master [1], in the supplement to the 6th edition (although this was the second tune bearing the "Hey Boys Up Go We" name in the Dancing Master). It also was published by John Walsh (originally with a partner named Hare) in all three editions of the Compleat Dancing Master (1718, 1731 & 1754), and was included by Thomas D'Urfey in Wit and Mirth; Pills to Purge Melancholy, vol. 2 (1719). It was also a popular vehicle for songs in ballad operas, including Murder Out at Last (1683, where a ballad is directed to by sung to the tune of "Hey, Boys, Up Go We"), The Devil to Pay (1731), The Patron, or the Statesman's Opera (1729), The Ship-Wreck, or the Farmer on the Coast (1746), and The Love and Revenge: or, The Vintner Outwitted (1781). "Hey, Boys..." is printed in a section of 'Whig Songs' in James Hogg's The Jacobite Relics of Scotland, vol. 1 (1819, p. 395).

Source for notated version:

Printed sources: Barlow (Complete Country Dance Tunes from Playford's Dancing Master), 1985; No. 227, p. 58. Barnes (English Country Dance Tunes), 1986. Karpeles & Schofield (A Selection of 100 English Folk Dance Airs), 1951; p. 13. Raven (English Country Dance Tunes), 1984; p. 26. Sharp (Country Dance Tunes), 1909; p. 20. Walsh (Complete Country Dancing-Master, Volume the Fourth), London, 1740; No. 182.

Recorded sources:




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