Umps and Dumps

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"You can't trust folk songs. They always sneak up on you."
Granny Weatherwax in Terry Pratchett's Witches Abroad

The Moon's In A Fit
Umps and Dumps

Topic 12TS 416 LP, UK 1980

First published by Topic. 1980/Produced
by Umps and Dumps and Tony Engle/
Recorded at Gateway Studios/Engineer -
John Gill/Design by Tony Engle/
Photography by Bob Naylor

John Kirkpatrick; concertina, button accordian
two-row melodeon, triangle, vocals.
Sue Harris; dulcimer, hammered dulcimer,
vocals
Tufty Swift; one-row melodeon,
two-row melodeon, mouth-organ,
fiddle, vocals
Derek Pearce; tenor banjo, percussion,
bass drum, drum kit, tuba, steel guitar
one-row melodeon, vocals
Alan Harris; string bass, bass, banjo,
vocals

The Liner Notes

Late in 1973 Tufty, Derek and John Tams formed
Whistling Rufus, a dance band trio featuring one-row melodeon and two tenor banjos. A mutual desire to play English country dance music led John and Sue to muscle in and by early 1974, Umps and Dumps had taken over, with the addition of oboe and concertina. Sue switched to hammered dulcimer in 1975. John Tams left in 1976 and now plays in The Albion Band. Alan joined in 1977 after working with Tufty and Sue as Hammer and Tongs.
 
Alan Harris also plays with Six Hands in Tempo
Tufty Swift also plays as Tufty Swift.
Derek Pearce also plays with Roaring Jelly,
Excelsior and Scaramouch & Co.
Sue Harris also plays as Sue Harris and
dances as Martha Roden.
John Kirkpatrick plays with anyone.

Track Notes

Upsides
John - concertina, vocals/Tufty -
one-row melodeon, vocal/Sue-
hammered dulcimer, vocal/Derek -
tenor banjo, percussion, bass drum,
vocal/Alan - string bass, vocal

Originally learned from a scrap of paper
headed 'Bob Roberts' tunes' that was
thrust under the noses of those attending
Nan Fleming-Williams' musicians evenings
at Cecil Sharp House circa 1964. The
nursery rhyme is of uncertain origin

After You've Got
Derek - vocal, backing vocal/John -
two-row melodeon/Sue - dulcimer/
Tufty - mouth organ/Alan - bass
 
Recorded by The Elliotts, amongst others
An old-fashioned song that is forever true

Woodland Voices
Sue - dulcimer/Tufty -two-row
melodeon/ Derek - banjo/Alan -
bass/John - concertina
 
A barn dance taken from the Topic
LP IDEAL MUSIC (12T319), featuring
Bob Smith's Ideal Band, a group that was
very popular in Glasgow in the 1930s

The Watercress Girl
John - vocal, two-button melodeon/
Derek - backing vocal, banjo/
Alan -backing vocal, bass/Sue -
dulcimer/Tufty - fiddle
 
A bequest from John Tams, who found it
in a hotch-potch of fragments noted by
Roy Palmer from the West Midlands
singer George Dunn published in the
EFDSS Journal in 1973.

Maybe She'll Write
Alan - vocal, tenor banjo/Derek -
tuba and percussion/John - backing
vocals
 
Taken from the singing of the Two Gilberts
this song was originally the B-side of Mary
Ellen at the Church! Turned Up

Rogues March - Dashing White Sergeant
Tufty - one -row melodeon, vocal/
Sue - dulcimer/John - concertina,
vocal/Derek -banjo and kit, vocal/
Alan - bass, vocal
 
Rogues March was the tune used by The
British Army when men were 'drummed
out of the regiment' (dishonourably
discharged). The words are from Lewis
Winstock's SONGS AND MUSIC OF THE
REDCOATS. The Dashing White Sergeant
- a real old trouper.

Marmalade Polka
Sue - dulcimer/John - concertina/
Tufty - one-row melodeon/Derek -
banjo and kit/Alan - bass
 
Learned from a tape compiled by Tony Engle
which features numerous traditional
musicians.

Underneath Her Apron
John - vocal and vibraslap/Derek -
banjo/Tufty - fiddle/Sue -
dulcimer/Alan - bass
 
Based on the performance by the Suffolk
singer  Percy Ling on the
Topic LP THE LING FAMILY (12TS292) A showcase
for the startling instrumental dexterity of
some of the band

Lichfield Tattoo
Tufty - one-row melodeon/Alan -
banjo, bass/Derek - banjo and kit/
Sue - dulcimer/John - concertina
 
a tune from the manuscript book of Isaac
Oldfield of Kirby Langley, near Derby,
who played in the Belper New Militia
Regimental Band around 1820

The Willow Tree
Sue - vocals/Derek - tuba, steel
guitar/Alan - banjo/John - two-
row melodeon
 
A song from May Bradley, a gypsy singer
from Ludlow in Shropshire. Fred Hare
collected a number of songs from her in
the early 1960s

Donkey, Jack Donkey -
Here It Comes Again
Derek - vocal, one - row melodeon
Alan - banjo/John - concertina
Tufty - fiddle/Sue - dulcimer
 
Donkey Jack was written by Bill Caddick,
wizard of the pen and plectrum. Here It Comes Again
was written by Derek with Clive Harvey
leaning over his shoulder.
 

Dark Town Strutters' Ball/
Cajun Two-Step
Sue - vocal and dulcimer/Tufty -
vocal, one - row melodeon/Alan -
banjo/John - button accordian,
triangle/Derek - tuba
 
An American dance hall song written by
Shelton Brooks. The two step comes from
Nathan Abshire's playing on the
album THE CAJUNS VOL 2

The Moon's In A Fit 1980 [click for larger image]
Topic Records 12TS 416 1980

Upside

Upsides
 
After You've Got
 
Woodland Voices
 
The Watercress Girl
 
Maybe She'll Write Me
 
Rogues March/
Dashing White Sergeant

Downside

Marmalade Polka
 
Underneath Her Apron
 
Lichfield Tattoo
 
The Willow Tree
 
Donkey, Jack Donkey -
Here It Comes Again
 
Dark Town Strutters' Ball/
Cajun Two-Step

The Moon's In A Fit 1980 [click for larger image]
Topic Records 12TS 416 1980

and there's a CD  for
sale as well from
this comedy duo
of the early twentieth century

whose dynamic accordion playing
spanned the history of Cajun music:
he played the reels of his father’s
generation, the Cajun songs of the
1930s and ‘40s, and brought his own
blues-tinged sensibilities to Cajun
music in a string of classic recordings

this very track, by Umps and Dumps 
can be foundon this incredible
compilation CD

a discography of the group that was
very popular in Glasgow in the 1930s

a survey of East Suffolk
Country Music
little over twenty seven years ago
this area was a hotbed of traditional
music-making and country entertainment,
where every village had its group of
musicians and singers, often travelling
around the many pubs where music was made

a very interesting dissersion
based on an entry in Winstock's book

more old squeezers, this

The online guide to folk song,
dance and roots music for the
West Midland counties

its a short list of seven
names and a song category, 
but the songs that are attached
to the names are the real treasure here

Tufty Swift
 
English melodeon player who used to play in the very influential Umps & Dumps Band, died in his sleep on 14th October, 1999, after a long battle with cancer. He leaves a wife,  Anita and a recently born baby boy, Benamie.
Many people will remember Umps & Dumps as one of the original bands to take part in the revolution in English Country Dance music which led to what we now call e-ceilidh.  His more recent band, Busking Sharks, was a valued addition to our dance programme at Ripponden.  Although not widely known, they were a band who could keep you dancing all night
 
He will be sorely missed by many of us.

Johnny Adams.
Musical Traditions. 2001

Barn dance bands, ceilidh bands, hoe down bands UK
Barn dance bands, ceilidh bands, hoe down bands UK

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