Peterborough Morris Music
(Comments by Mark Swingler), revised 25/02/2024.
Dances check into and out of our repertoire but, like a certain mythical hotel, once on this page they can't leave.
Most of our dances were collected from the traditional dancers of years ago. But we also perform some devised more recently; for more information see the note after each dance.
In 2024 we are emphasising the Northamptonshire dances.
Links go to videos or sound files by Peterborough Morris (PM) unless stated otherwise. If a video is too fast to follow, you may be able to slow it down, as described here.
Most traditional morris tunes are on the Morris Ring website in various formats and are not repeated here. Others are given below if we have it.
But there is more to playing for dancing than simply knowing the tune. Please study this excellent article:- Playing Music for Morris Dancing by Jeff Bigler
Dances are listed according to the styles of the villages where they were collected.
Tunes are listed under the name of the dance, which may differ from the common name of the tune. Alternative tune titles are given when known.
Beaux of London City / Shooting, G YouTube
The Bell, G. Originally a six-man dance but adapted for eight by PM to suit dancing in a church with restricted space. The dancers are arranged like ninepins around the musician. The tune is better known as The Minstrel Boy.
Black Joke, G YouTube
Bluebells of Scotland, G YouTube
The Buffoon, G YouTube.
Lads-a-Buncham (aka "Oh Dear Mother") in G video,
Badby, West Northamptonshire
Beaux of London City, G YouTube
Broad Cupid, G YouTube. The tune is also known as "From Night Til Morn"
Flowers of Edinburgh, G (Notation courtesy of Pete Shaw who learned it while dancing with Northampton Morris in the 1970s). This version is only a little different from that in "100 English Folk Dance Airs" by Karpeles and Schofield, EFDSS, 1934. Maybe that's where Northampton got it.
Banbury Bill, D. We usually use The Rose Tree tune, see below.
Glorishears, G or D mp3 audio
Highland Mary, G YouTube. Same dance as the Quaker.
Lollipop Man, G. PM imagined how the Ducklington dance would be if it had been adopted in Bampton. The tune is shared with the Burns song
Maid of the Mill, G
Over the Hills and Far Away, D. YouTube PM devised a chorus to go with Bampton figures using this well-known tune.
The Rose Tree, D, Same dance as the Banbury Bill, different tune.
The Quaker, G and D YouTube
Princess Royal, (jig), Bm. YouTube from 20 seconds in. The Bampton version of this well-known tune is in a minor key. The first choice for a D/G melodeon player would be Em, but the wide range of this version doesn't fit on the keyboard. So it ended up in Bm, played mostly on the "D" row.
Riggs of Doom, G. Devised by Utrecht Morris in Bampton style, tune by Frans Tromp. Notation here (search for Frans, and maybe log on to melnet.) Not easy to get Tromp's chords on the melodeon. I like this version on YouTube of John Golightly on melodeon and friend and here is Utrecht Morris.
??? -- A newish tune has inspired a new processional dance. Details to follow.
Trunkles, G. A newish dance in Bampton style using the Bledington tune but with sequence A/B/C. See also Trunkles Bledington below.
Abraham Brown the Sailor, D mp3 with dance instructions!
Old Woman Tossed up in a Blanket, G YouTube
Princess Royal, as played by Phillip Taylor of Shakespeare Morris mp3
Morris Off, as played by Phillip Taylor of Shakespeare Morris mp3
Bledington, GloucestershireNone in current PM repertoire
Jockey to the Fair, G YouTube
Maid of the Mill, G
Fieldtown, Leafield Oxfordshire
Nutting Girl jig mp3
Headington, Oxfordshire (Not in current repertoire)
Old Mother Oxford
Headington / Bampton
Bonney Green Garters. The finale dance used by many Morris sides.
Hinton-in-the Hedges, West Northamptonshire
Getting Upstairs, G or D
Lads-a-Buncham, G YouTube
Bold Nelson's Praise (Jig) , G This tune is missing from the Morris Ring website so we give it here in
PDF and mid formats. It is a version of the well-known Princess Royal.
Small but significant differences occur in the C-music at the end of the "slows". The first time the C-music lead-in notes occur, they are quick, but not
quick when they re-appear a moment later. And there is a half-bar with a
quick note as the speed returns to normal.
Many morris tunes are from popular songs, although in this case the tune appears to precede the lyrics. Info here and here.
Vandals of Hammerwich, G
Shepherd's Hey. (No Ravensthorpe music notation could be found on line, but there are Youtube videos of both East Suffolk Morris Men and Moulton Morris Men. They differ slightly and perhaps vary from verse to verse. Here is the ESMM version on YouTube with notation as heard by the webmaster as mid and PDF files.)
Ruardean, Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire
Steeple Claydon, BuckinghamshireNot in current PM repertoire
The Steeple Claydon Morris Dance, there is only one, to the tune of Old Mother Oxford, YouTube video of John Weaver playing for Brackley Morris.
Upton-on-Severn, Malvern Hills District of WorcestershireNot in current PM repertoire
Stick Dance, G. YouTube. Maud Karpeles noted this tune under the name Twin Sisters while in Vermont in 1929. In an article in the EFDS journal in 1933 she suggested it a being suitable for the Upton Stick Dance. - And it stuck!
Wheatley, OxfordshireNot in current PM repertoire
Processional. May be used for dancing onto the the display area.
Trunkles, A or G ("A Handbook of Morris Dances" by Lionel Bacon gives the key signature as two sharps, but I reckon it's in "A")
Beyond the usual repertoire...
BledingtonNot in current PM repertoire
Trunkles, G YouTube
William and Nancy, G YouTube
Young Collins, G YouTube
BucknellNot in current PM repertoire
Bonnets so Blue, G, jig YouTube
SherborneNot in current PM repertoire
I'll Go and 'List for a Sailor, Em YouTube
(Nothing to do with, i.e. does not include, the song tune "The Unfortunate Tailor".)
Not even tunes used by Peterborough Morris. In 1982 PM travelled to Bourges, Peterborough's French twin. There we met local folk dance group
Notre Berry. We loved their tunes
and one of their musicians recorded these for us.
(To follow - 1982 tape was digitised, then my PC died before the various
tracks were split up and identified. Yet to find where I left off.)
And further beyond the usual repertoire. - Not Morris but, from Bourges in Central France Notre Berry
Not even tunes used by Peterborough Morris. In 1982 PM travelled to Bourges, Peterborough's French twin. There we met local folk dance group Notre Berry. We loved their tunes and one of their musicians recorded these for us. (To follow - 1982 tape was digitised, then my PC died before the various tracks were split up and identified. Yet to find where I left off.)