Lumps of Puddings (2)

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X:1 T:Lumps of Puddings [2] M:6/4 L:1/8 R:Jig S:Henry Playford - Dancing Master (1701) Z:AK/Fidder's Companion K:Gmin A2|B4 G2B3g f2|d2 c2 d2G4 AB|A4 F2A3g d2|c3B AG F4 fg| a2g2f2d2g2f2|d3c B2f4d2|cdcA GF G3A Bc|d4 B2 G6:| |:A/B/c|d2 BcdeB d2 BcdB|d2 BcdB G2 AB|c2 ABcA c2 ABcA|c2 ABcA F3A Bc| d2 BcdB d2 BcdB|d2 BcdB f4d2|cdcAGF G3 A Bc|d4 B2 G4:| |:dc|B2d2g2 B2d2g2|B2d2g2 G4AB|A2c2f2 A2c2f2|A2c2f2 F4 dc| B2d2g2B2d2g2|B2d2g2 f4d2|cdcAG^F G3A Bc|d4B2 G4:||

LUMPS OF PUDDING(S) [2]. AKA - "Lumps of Pudens." AKA and see "Contented wi' little and Canty wi' mair," "Shives of Bread," "I'm Content with My Lot," "Contentment is Wealth," "Sweet Pudding," "Gallowglass (The)." English, Welsh, Scottish; Jig and Air (6/8 time). G Minor (Mellor, Orford, Vickers): A Dorian (Johnson/1984, Johnson/1997). Standard tuning (fiddle). AABBCC (Mellor, Vickers): AABBCCDDEEFF. Johnson (1984) believes this popular tune to be a 17th century English country dance tune, though it was claimed by both England and Scotland. It was published in Henry Playford's Dancing Master [1] editions of 1701 through 1728, the Sinkler Manuscript (1710, as "Sweet Pudding"), parodied in John Gay's Beggar's Opera (1728, as "Thus I stand like the Turk with his doxies around"), Oswald's Caledonian Pocket Companion (c. 1756, vol. 2, p. 4), D'Urfey's Wit and Mirth: Pills to Purge Melancholy (vol. VI, 1720, song and tune), Walsh's Caledonian Country Dancing Master, No. 45, and the Gillespie Manuscript of Perth (1768). The melody also appears in several Welsh manuscripts. The jig serves as the finale (air No. 28) for Gay's famous 1728 ballad opera (Beggar's Opera), which was so popular that the German composer Handel wryly remarked that his own opera current that year had been driven off the stage by 'lumps of pudding' (Emmerson, 1971). In fact, the tune can be found in a number of ballad operas of the period, sometimes under different titles (Pulver, 1923).

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. In William Vickers' 1770 Northumbrian collection "Shives of Bread" is given as an alternate title. A two-strain version of the tune was also entered into the c. 1812 music manuscript collection of Northumbrian musician John Bell [2] (1783-1864). North of that border, the melody was known in Scotland as the tune for Robert Burns' "Contented Wi' Little," or "Contented wi' little and canty wi' mair"; Burns' title and tune engendered offshoots in Irish tradition-- "Contentment is Wealth" and "I'm Content with My Lot" (Ta Me Sasta len' Staid). The Irish jig Gallowglass (The) is a related tune in the first strain. "Nathaniel Gow's Lament for the Death of His Brother" is thought to be a (distanced) derivative of "Lumps of Pudding." "Talpiau Pwdin" is Welsh for 'lumps of pudding' and is a setting of the Playford original.

The title is taken from a line in an English song set to the melody, called "Lumps of Pudding." It begins:

When I was in the low country,
When I was in the low country;
What slices of pudding and pieces of bread
My mother gave me when I was in need

My mother she killed a good fat hog,
She made such puddings would choak a dog;
And I shall ne'er forget till I dee,
What lumps of pudding my mother gave me.

A Scottish version (from Herd, Gilpin and Paton's Ancient and Modern Scottish Songs, Heroic Ballads, etc., 1870, p. 221) goes:

My daddy he steal'd the minister's cow,
And a' we weans gat puddings anew;
The dirt crap out, as the meat gaed in,
And wow sic puddings as we gat then!
Sic lumps o' puddings, sic dads o' bread,
The stack in my throat, and maist were my dead.

As I gaed by the minister's yard,
I spied the minister kissing his maid;
Gin ye winnae believe, cum here and fee
Sic a braw new coat the minister gied me.
Sic lumps o' puddings, etc....

The tune is mentioned in this anecdote from Hotten & Larwood's book The History of Signboards from the Earliest Times to the Present Day (1866, p. 379):

In the month of May, 1718, one James Austin, "inventor of the Persian ink powder," desiring to give his customers a substantial proof of his gratitude, invited them to the Boar's Head to partake of an immense plum-pudding. This pudding weighed 1,000 lbs.; a baked pudding of 1 food square, and the best piece of an ox roasted: the principal dish was put in the copper on Monday, May 12, at the Red Lion Inn, by the Mint in Southwark, and had to boil fourteen days. From there it was to be brought to the Swan Tavern, in Fish Street Hill, accompanied by a band of music playing-"What lumps of pudding my mother gave to me;" one of the instruments was a drum in proportion to the pudding, being 18 feet 2 inches in length, and 4 feet in diameter, which was drawn by "a device fixt on six asses." Finally the monstrous pudding was to be divided in St. George's Fields, but apparently its smell was too much for the gluttony of the Londoners; the escort was routed, the pudding taken and devoured, and the whole ceremony brought to an end, before Mr. Austin had a chance to regale his customers.

Additional notes

Printed sources : - Barlow (Complete Country Dance Tunes from Playford's Dancing Master), 1985; No. 453, p. 104. T. Clark (Flores Musicae, or the Scots Musician), 1773; p. 34. Elias Howe (Musician’s Omnibus Nos. 6 & 7), Boston, 1880-1882; p. 613. Johnson (Scottish Fiddle Music in the 18th Century), 1984; No. 36, p. 95. Johnson (The Kitchen Musician No. 14: Songs, Airs and Dances of the 18th Century), 1997; p. 11. Joyce (Old Irish Folk Music and Songs), 1909; No. 155 ("I'm Content with My Lot"). Mellor (Welsh Dance Tunes), 1935; pp. 4-5. O'Neill (Music of Ireland: 1850 Melodies), 1903; No. 729 ("Contentment is Wealth"). Offord (John of the Green: Ye Cheshire Way), 1985; p. 79. Oswald (Caledonian Pocket Companion, Book 7), 1760; p. 4. Seattle (Great Northern/William Vickers), 1987, Part 2; No. 400.

Recorded sources : - Maggie's Music MMCD220, Hesperus - "Celtic Roots" ().

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