Jumping John

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JUMPING JOHN. AKA and see "Jumping Joan (1)," "Joan's Placket," "Joan's Placket is Torn," "Cock of the North (1)," "Jean Qui Saut." English, Scottish, Shetlands; Jig. Shetland, Whalsay. England, Northumberland. A Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AA'B. The title appears in Henry Robson's list of popular Northumbrian song and dance tunes ("The Northern Minstrel's Budget"), which he published c. 1800. It is one of the "missing tunes" of William Vickers' 1770 Northumbrian manuscript. The melody was popular in mainland Scotland in the early 18th century, and imported to the Shetland Islands, where it entered traditional repertoire. The melody was published in Playford's Dancing Master (1674) as "Jumping Joan," by James Oswald in this tenth collection in Scotland (in A Flat Major) and by Feuillet in his Recueil de Contredanses (1706) in Paris. "It was also prescribed by Burns for the song 'Her Daddie forbad and her Minnie forbad' in Johnson's Musical Museum and under another name, 'Cock o' the North', it is a popular Scottish jig or 6/8 march" (Cooke, 1986). Samuel Bayard (1981) dates the tune from the 1600's. Under the title "Joan's Placket Is Torn" the tune was mentioned in Pepys' diary for June 1667, and it was printed in Playford's Dancing Master from the edition of 1686 and all later ones. There is a popular but unsubstantiated story that a trumpet version of the tune was played at the execution of Mary, Queen of Scots, in 1587. See also the related tune "When I Followed a Lass" printed in Glasgow in 1782 by James Aird.

Words, printed (and probably sanitized) by James Johnson [1788] go:

Her Daddie forbad, her Minnie forbad,
Forbidden she wadna be;
She wadna trow't, the browst she brew'd
Wad taste sae bitter-lie.

CHO:
The lang lad they ca' Jumpin John
Beguil'd the bonnie lassie,
The lang lad the ca' Jumping John
Beguil'd the bonnie lassie.

A cow and a cauf, a youe and a hauf,
And thretty gude shillins and three;
A vera gude tocher, a cotter-man's dochter,
The lass wi' the bonnie black e'e.


Source for notated version: Andrew Poleson (Whalsay, Shetland) [Cooke].

Printed sources: Callcott. (?) Cooke (The Fiddle Tradition of the Shetland Isles), 1986; Ex. 20, p. 70. Johnson (Scots Musical Museum, vol. 2), 1788; No. 138, p. 145. Johnson-Stenhouse (Scots Musical Museum), 1853; p. 129. Oswald (The Caledonian Pocket Companion, vol. 2), 1750?; p. 72. Smith (Scottish Minstrel, vol. 2), 1820-24; p. 54.

Recorded sources:




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