Henry's Songbook

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Don't Sit On My Jimmy Shands

  • (Richard Thompson)

    Don't sit on my Jimmy Shands
    Don't sit on my Jimmy Shands
    They don't mend with sticky tape and glue
    Please! Don't sit on my Jimmy Shands
    Don't sit on my Jimmy Shands
    That's my very best advice to you

    When the party hit full swing
    I saw you come reeling in
    You had that six pack in a stranglehold
    Now you stagger, now you sway
    Why don't you fall the other way
    'Cos I've got something here worth more than gold

    Darling though you're twice my size
    I don't mean to patronize
    Honey let me lead you by the hand
    Find a lap or find a chair
    You can park it anywhere
    Just don't rest those cheeks against my man

    Call me precious I don't mind
    78s are hard to find
    You just can't get the shellac since the war
    This one's the Beltona brand
    Finest label in the land
    They don't make them like that any more

    No shindig is half complete
    Without that famous polka beat
    That's why they invite me, I suppose
    Waltzes, strathspey's, eightsome reels
    Now you know how good it feels
    Crank that handle babe - away she goes

    As sung by The McCalmans

Susannes Folksong-Notizen

  • [1997:] There exists a Scottish, Hogmanay custom where priceless '78s' of Jimmy Shand are flaunted, played, then sat upon, thus increasing the value of the remaining few. (Notes McCalmans, 'High Ground')

  • [2000:] It feels so strange to be told that Jimmy Shand [who died earlier that week] is no longer with us because he has been with me all my life, and I loved his music long before I knew what music was.

    Next to my cot, my parents would put a record player with a stack of Jimmy Shand records on it. It was the only way they found of getting me to sleep. The notes must have worked their way deep into my unconscious brain. One Christmas, aged four, my parents gave me an accordion which I picked up and played without the need for lessons.

    Jimmy Shand was my reference point. Without him, I could not be doing what I do today. Jimmy hit the television screens with a style of music that put Scottish music - and Scotland - on the international map. He was a great ambassador for his country. How he achieved this is much more difficult to put into words. Musically, Jimmy was a technical genius and a human metronome. He created a more organised form of ceilidh music. The way he tightened the music - using tempo, beat, and the line-up of the band - made it perfect for Scottish dancing.

    Of course, youth never want to conform with what has gone before. Jimmy was my inspiration but I consciously departed from him in my own playing. But I always remained an admirer of what he could do. I often wished I could hold the tempo the way he used to and instil that feeling.

    I met Jimmy once and it was a great honour and one of the most memorable days of my life. A television director arranged for us to meet at Jimmy's home. I was worried that, having been an idol all my life, the reality of the man might be a disappointment. In fact, he was a perfect gentleman with a wonderful, dry sense of humour that belied his reputation for taciturnity. Jimmy insisted we meet first off camera and said he had been looking forward to meeting me, which was hugely flattering. We played the 'Bluebell Polka' together in the garden while they filmed us. I will never forget what he said to me before we played because the words capture so much of him. He said: "Mind, Phil, I'm 84 years old - watch your tempo."

    I am sitting here thinking how sad it is we did not meet again. Jimmy sent me a Christmas card each year but I should have kept in touch and got to know him better.

    My favourite Jimmy Shand story again demonstrates his dry sense of humour. Staying in a west coast guest house he received a meagre breakfast of a slice of toast. Jimmy, not unreasonably, asked for something to put on it and was given a tiny pot of honey. "Ah," said Jimmy to the owner, "I see you keep a bee."

    He may be gone but his music will live on. (Phil Cunningham, Scotland on Sunday, 24 Dec)

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Quelle: England

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Layout : Henry Kochlin  (Schwerin)

aktualisiert am 15.04.2003