Muttonburn Stream, The
DESCRIPTION: "Muttonburn Stream, It's not marked on this world's map... A wee river in Ulster." It has wondrous qualities: "a wee dunt" in it makes washing clean, "it cures all diseases" including fatness or lean, a good place to fall after a drinking party.
AUTHOR: William James Hume
EARLIEST DATE: 1931 (recorded by Richard Hayward)
KEYWORDS: drink humorous nonballad talltale
FOUND IN: Ireland
REFERENCES (3 citations):
Morton-Ulster 10, "The Muttonburn Stream" (1 text, 1 tune)
ADDITIONAL: Richard Hayward, Ireland Calling (Glasgow,n.d.), p. 6, "The Mutton Burn Stream" (text, music and reference to Decca F-2602 recorded Oct 4, 1931)
Bell/O Conchubhair, Traditional Songs of the North of Ireland, pp. 81-82, "The Muttonburn Stream" (1 text, 1 tune)
NOTES: Morton-Ulster: "The Muttonburn Stream is to be found near Carrickfergus."
"Castle Hyde" takes glorification of a locality to an extreme. "The Groves of Blarney" takes it to the next stage by parody. "The Muttonburn Stream" completes the transformation by making a tall tale.
The date and master id (GB-3353-1) for Hayward's record is provided by Bill Dean-Myatt, MPhil. compiler of the Scottish National Discography. - BS
Kathleen O'Sullivan pointed out to me that this song was written by William Hume, who is the grandfather of the twenty-first century storyteller Billy Teare. - RBW
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