Molly Brooks

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MOLLY BROOKS. AKA and see "Marlbrouk," "Malbrou(c)k," "We Won't Go Home Until Morning." Old-Time, Play-party and Dance Tune. The play-party song and dance tune was collected in the Appalachians, Illinois and the Ozarks, and is a variant of the old English "Marlbrouk," which itself is a variant of an older French song that begins: "Marlbrough s'en vaten guerre." Varying degrees of antiquity have been attached to the melody. Richard Chase (American Folk Tales and Songs, 1956, p. 205) records that in Virginia these verses were sung to the tune:

Molly Brooks has gone to the war, and I fear she'll never return,
Molly Brooks come out of my orchard, and leave my apples alone.
Moll Brooks, come out of the water, until you learn to swim.

Also in Virginia a play-party game was accompanied by this rhyme sung to the tune:

Oh my mother and father were Irish, and I am Irish too.
Oh we bought a peck of potatoes, and they were Irish too.
Oh we kept a pig in the parlor, for it was Irish too.

Another version of the play-party was recorded in Arkansas in 1958, sung by Mr. & Mr.s F.E. Ash [1]:

Molly Brooks has gone to the isle,
Molly Brooks has gone to the isle,
Molly Brooks has gone to the isle,
And I hope she'll never return.
I hope she'll never return,
I hope she'll never return.
Molly Brooks has gone to the isle,
And I hope she'll never return.

Your right hand to your partner,
The left one to your neighbor,
The right one to the one you meet,
And all promenade,
And all promenade,
And all promenade.
Oh, the right hand to the one you meet,
And all promenade.

See also "Moll Brooks" in Patrick O'Flannagan's Hibernia Collection (Boston, 1860), which may have been an alternate air, although it has some differences, particularly in the second strain. An American hymn version of the tune is sung under the title "Jesus Preached in Galilee." See also Vance Randolph, Ozark Folk Songs, vol. III, #529.

Source for notated version:

Printed sources:

Recorded sources: Tradition TLP 1007, Richard Chase - "Instrumental Music of the Southern Appalachians" (1956).

See also listing at:
Jane Keefer's Folk Music Index: An Index to Recorded Sources [2]
Hear the field recording by the Ashes at The John Quincy Wolf Folklore Collection, Lyon College [3]




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