(1967) Various Artists – Poetry and Song (14 LPs)

This is the follow up series to Argo’s 1965 poetry and song 4-volume set for Primary School children, Rhyme and Rhythm.

The 14 volumes in this series were aimed at Secondary School children: volumes 1-3 for 12-13 year olds, vols 4-6 for the 13-14 age group, vols 7-10 for 14-15 year olds, and vols 11-14 for 15-16.

For each age group MacMillan published a classroom study book with the texts of additional poems that they couldn’t get on to the records.


Edited by James Gibson and recorded in association with MacMillan and Co. Ltd (14 volumes)

Issued: Vols 1-6 in 1967, vols 7-14 in 1968

Series directed by: Harley Usill

Folk music: arranged by Ewan MacColl, Peggy Seeger, directed by Charles Parker

Recording Engineer: Stan Goodall
Production Assitant: Josephine Beattie

Cover pictures: chosen from winners of the Sunday Mirror’s annual Children’s Art Competition 1957-67

Poetry readers appearing in the series
Tony Church
Michael Hordern
Barbara Jefford
Richard Johnson
Eamon Keane
Laurie Lee
Ewan MacColl
Peter Orr
Prunella Scales
William Squire
Gary Watson
Patrick Wymark

Singers and musicians appearing in the series
The Critics Group:
Frankie Armstrong
Brian Byrne
Helen Campbell
Ted Culver
John Faulkner
Sandra Kerr
Paul Lenihan
A.L. Lloyd
Tom Paley
Denis Turner
Terry Yarnell

Ewan MacColl
Peggy Seeger

Choir of St John’s College, Cambridge

(Below are track listings of the albums. Song tracks in bold)

Vol 1 – Argo issue numbers: DA 50, ZDA 50, ZPL 1094

poetry&song1frontCover picture
The Suburb by Nicholas Hill, aged 14, Wimbledon College, Edge Hill.


Side One

Band 1
Passing T’ien Men (Po Chu-i) – PW
Upon Westminster Bridge (Wordsworth) – RJ
Nature (Gillian Wallington) – PS
If I had a hammer (Seeger/Hays) – PS vocal, with chorus and guitar
Leisure (WH Davies) – WS
Thrushes (Humbert Wolfe) – PS
The Lark in the Morn (unknown/trad) – FA unaccompanied

Band 2
A Minor Bird (Frost) – PW
Spring Comes (John Clare) – GW
Salford Maypole Song (unknown/trad) – EM unaccompanied

Band 3
A Widow’s Weeds (de la Mare) – PS
Inversnaid (GM Hopkins) – BJ
Black Jack Davy (unknown/trad) – PS vocal, with banjo accompaniment
Weathers (Hardy) – MH
A Hot Day (Tessimond) – BJ
Rich Days (WH Davies) – WS

Band 4
Prelude (JM Synge) – EK
The Lake Isle of Innisfree (Yeats) – WK
Hot Asphalt (unknown/trad) – PL with chorus and instrumental ensemble
On the Bromielaw Quay (unknown/trad) – EK
The Londoner in the Country (Church) – TC

Side Two

Band 1
Puffing Billy (Hassall) – PO
Poor Paddy (unknown/trad) – PL
Night Mail (Auden) – PW
The Bridge (J Redwood Anderson) – TC
Fireman’s Calypso (MacColl) – TC vocal, with guitar accompaniment

Band 2
Henry King (Belloc) – PW
A Cautionary Tale (Lindon) – PW
In the dark, dark world (unknown) – PS
Polka (Sitwell) – PS
Musician’s Lament (Mowbray) – PS
Diddling (James Reeves) – MH

Band 3
Old Blue (unknown/trad) – PS vocal, with banjo

The Giraffe (Dearmer) – PW
The Porcupine (Nash) – TC
Skewball (unknown/trad) – ALL vocal, with guitar accompaniment
Lament for a Loved Horse (Elizabeth du Preez) – PS
Poor Old Man (unknown/trad) – TY vocal, with chorus and concertina
To a Butterfly (Wordsworth) – BJ
Butterflies (Sansom) – GW

Vol 2 – Argo issue numbers: DA 51, ZDA 51, ZPL 1095

poetry&song2frintCover picture
Eagles by Terry Bauman, age 15, of North Paddington School, London W9


Side One

Band 1
The Twa Corbies (unknown/trad) – EM unaccompanied

The Eagle (Andrew Young) – TC
The Eagle (Tennyson) – PO
Survival (Bullock) – RJ
The Birds (unknown) – PS
A Lark’s Nest (Smart) – LL
The Rabbit (WH Davies) – GW
An Other (Ted Hughes) – PO

Band 2
Prickle Holly Bush (unknown/trad) – SK unaccompanied

Band 3
The Herd-Boy (trans Waley from Chinese) – MH
The Moods of the Wind (du Preez) – PS
The Falling Night (Fletcher) – TC
Up in the Morning (unknown/trad) – EM vocal, with fiddle

Band 4
Paper of Pins (unknown/trad) – PS

I Don’t Like Her (Worraker) – PS
Katy Cruel (unknown/trad) – PS vocal, with guitar

Side Two

Band 1
Madam Mouse Trots (Sitwell) – BJ
The Rescue (Summers) – MH
The Tiger (Blake) – WS
My Cat Jeoffry (Smart) – TC
The Tom-Cat (Marquis) – RJ
The Singing Cat (Stevie Smith) – WS
On a Night of Snow (Coatsworth) – BJ/PS

Band 2
When Icicles Hang (Shakespeare) – Argo
Snow (Thomas) – PW
Snow in the Suburbs (Hardy) – BJ

Band 3
Jesse James (unknown/trad) – TP vocal, with chorus and instrumental ensemble

Band 4
The Highwayman (Noyes) – WS
Brennan on the Moor (unknown/trad) – PL and chorus

Vol 3 – Argo issue numbers: DA 52, ZDA 52, ZPL 1096

poetry&song3frontCover picture
The Twelve Apostles by pupils aged 12-14 of Lucy Margaret School, London SW6


Side One

Band 1
Spells (Reeves) – WS/PO
Over Hill, Over Dale (Shakespeare) – PS
The Bugle (Tennyson) – MH
Away Go We (de la Mare) – BJ
The Moonlit Stream (Reeves) – MH

Band 2
Romance (Turner) – PW
Interruption (de Preez) – PS
The Bookworm (de la Mare) – PO
A Wanderer’s Song (Masefield) – TC

Band 3
Sir Patrick Spens (unknown/trad) – EM unaccompanied

Band 4
From the Ballad of the Kon-Tiki (Serrailler) – TC
Three Fishers (Kingsley) – PW
Spurn Light (Anderson) – WS
Flannan Isle (Gibson) – RJ

Side Two

Band 1
The Mermaid (unknown/trad) – PS

To Drown (Shakespeare) – TC
The Sweet Trinity (unknown/trad) – JF and SK vocals, with chorus
Stormalong (unknown/trad) – JF and chorus

Band 2
The Deserted House (Mary Coleridge) – BJ
The Forest Fire (Roberts) – WS

Band 3
The Twelve Apostles (unknwon/trad) – PS and chorus

Band 4
St Patrick’s Breastplate (trans Alexander ) – PW
Pilgrim’s Song (Bunyan) – St J C
From A Song to David (Smart) – PW
For Unto Us a Child is Born (Isaiah, Ch 9) – St J C
For Sleep or Death (Pitter) – PS
Psalm 23 (Bible) – St J C

Vol 4 – Argo issue numbers: DA 53, ZDA 53, ZPL 1097

poetry&song4frontCover Picture
Life At Sea, by Malcolm Coates, aged 15, Maidstone, Kent


Side One

Band 1
Shoals of Herring (MacColl) – EM vocal, with instrumental ensemble

Band 2
Words (Thomas) – MH
Things Men Have Made (DH Lawrence) – PW
The Scribe (de la Mare) – GW
Fragile Things (du Preez) – PS
Swift Things are Beautiful (Coatsworth) – BJ
Pied Beauty (GM Hopkins) – PS
Warning to Children (Graves) – TC

Band 3
John Barleycorn (unknown/trad) – TY unaccompanied

Summer (Rossetti) – PS
An August Midnight (Hardy) – MH
Design (Frost) – PW
Scarborough Fair (unknown/trad) – FA vocal with SK vocal

Band 4
Apples (Laurie Lee) – LL
The Gairdener Chyld (unknown/trad) – EM
Country Letter (Clare) – GW

Side Two

Band 1
The Fitter’s Song (MacColl) – EM vocal, with guitar and chorus

Morning Express (Sassoon) – TC
The Wabash Cannonball (unkniwn/trad) – TP vocal, with chorus and instrumental ensemble
To a Locomotive in Winter (Whitman) – TC
Tay Bridge Disaster (McGonagall) – EM

Band 2
I Ride an Old Paint (unknown/trad) – TP vocal, with guitar

Tarantella (Belloc) – PW
Home Thoughts from Abroad (Browning) – MH
From The Old Vicarage, Grantchester (Brooke) – GW
Farewell to Tarwathie (unknown/trad) – EM with instrumental ensemble
Adlestrop (Thomas) – PW

Band 3
From Peter Grimes (Crabbe) – RJ
The Water of Tyne (unknown/trad) – EM

Vol 5 – Argo issue numbers: DA 54, ZDA 54, ZPL 1098

poetry&song5frontCover pictures
Lost in thye Storm, by David Justin Williams, age 10 of Mevagissey CP School, Cornwall
The Sleepy Cat, by Trevor Hallesy, age 11, of Elstree CofE School, Herts


Side One

Band 1
Pike (Ted Hughes) – TC
The Thrush (Crossley-Holland) – PO
The New-come Nightingale (Clare) – GW
The Bat (Pitter) – BJ
The Snail (James Reeves) – PS
Old Shellover (de la Mare) – BJ
Considering the Snail (Gunn) – TC

Band 2
On a Cat Ageing (Gray) – BJ
The Cat (WH Davies) – MH
Man and Beast (Clifford Dyment) – TC
A Cat (Thomas) – PO

Band 3
2 & 1 are a Problem (Nash) – TC
The Crocodile (unknown/trad) – PS and chorus
The Python (Belloc) – PS
The Termite (Nash) – PW
Tugboat Tommy (Thompson) – GW
Notting Hill Polka (Bridges-Adams) – PS

Band 4
Morgan (Harrington) – WS
Shameful Death (William Morris) – MH
Pretty Boy Floyd (Woody Guthrie) – TP
Katharine Jaffray (unknown/trad) – EM unaccompanied

Side Two

Band 1
La Belle Dame Sans Merci (Keats) – MH
Allison Gross (unknown/trad) – EM unaccompanied
A Spriting Go We (Jeffere) – BJ
Lullaby (from A Midsummer Night’s Dream) – Argo
Traveller’s Curse after Misdirection (Graves) – WS
The Curse (Synge) – TC
A Witch (Barnes) – PW

Band 2
The Listeners (de la Mare) – PW
Kubla Khan (Coleridge) – RJ

Band 3
James Whaland (unknown/trad) – PS

The Old Ships (Flecker) – GW
The Smuggler (unknown/trad) – FA unaccompanied
Cardigan Bay (Masefield) – RJ
Blow Boys, Blow (unknown/trad) – TY

Vol 6 – Argo issue numbers: DA 55, ZDA 55, ZPL 1099

poetry&song6frontCover picture
My Fight Against The Forces of Evil, by Charles Lee, 16, of King’s School, Gloucester


Side One

Band 1
The Revenge (Tennyson) – TC

Band 2
A Protest in the 6th Year of Chi’en Fu (trans Waley) – RJ
Henry V Before Harfleur (Shakespeare) GW
After Blenheim (Southey) – WS

Band 3
Song of Samuel Sweet (Causley) – TC

Band 4
The Bonny Earl of Moray (unknown/trad) – EM unaccompanied

The Quarry (Auden) – S/O
Pibroch of Donuil Dhu (Scott) – EM

Side Two

Band 1
Hate (David Eva) – GW
The Wound (Martin) – WS
The Send-Off (Owen) – RJ
Geordie (unknown/trad) – SK unaccompanied
The Colour (Hardy) – BJ

Band 2
Sleep (Shakespeare) – PO
To Sleep (Wordsworth) – TC
The Ballad of Father Gilligan (Yeats) – EK
In Church (Barnes) – LL

Band 3
David’s Lament over Saul and Jonathan (Book of Samuel) – PO

Band 4
King Herod and the Cock (unknown/trad) – ALL unaccompanied

The Oxen (Hardy) – MH
The Seven Joys (unknown/trad) – St J C
The Lamb (Blake) – PS
Balulalow (unknwn/trad) – St J C
The Donkey (Chesterton) – PW
The Donkey’s Owner (Sansom) – GW
This Happy New Year (unknown/trad) – St J C
God Be in My Head (unknown/trad) – PS

Vol 7 – Argo issue numbers: DA 56, ZDA 56, ZPL 1100

7Cover picture: Harvest Home by Colin Gibson, aged 16, of the Irish School of Lanscape Painting, Northern Ireland


Side One

Band 1
The Road Not Taken (Robert Frost) – PW
The Railway Junction (de la Mare) – PO
A Local Train of Thought (Sassoon) – MH
Sunday Afternoon (Thwaite) – PS
The Newport Railway (McGonagall) – EM unaccompanied

Band 2
The Line Gang (Frost) – PW
John Henry (Unknown) – TP vocal, banjo

Band 3
I’m Champion at Keeping ‘em Rolling (MacColl) – EM unaccompanied

Cynddylan on a Tractor (RS Thomas) – WS
The Lane (Andrew Young) – PO
The Manor Farm (Edward Thomas) – PW
Forefathers (Blunden) – LL

Band 4
A Trampwoman’s Tragedy (Hardy) – BJ

Side Two

Band 1
Lowlands (trad/unknown) – JF with chorus

The Solitary Reaper (Wordsworth) – RJ
The Lonely Farmer (R.S.Thomas) – WS
Old Ben (de la Mare) – BJ
At Grass (Larkin) – GW

Band 2
Night (William Blake) – MH
January (John Vaughan) – RJ
April Rise (Lee) – LL
I Thank You God (EE Cummings) – TC
A Prayer in Spring (Robert Frost) – PW

Band 3
Autumn Change (John Clare) – GW
To Autumn (John Keats) – PO
Harvest Festival (Peter Mullineaux) – BJ
Charlie, O Charlie (trad/unknown) – EM unaccompanied

Band 4
Wind (Ted Hughes) – RJ
Ode to the West Wind (Shelley) – GW

Band 5
Billy Boy (trad/unknown) – TP vocal, banjo

Vol 8 – Argo issue numbers DA 57, ZDA 57, ZPL 1101

8Cover picture: The ??? Bird by Michael ?? , aged 10, from ??

Side One

Band 1
Tottie (Sims) – TY vocal, guitar
To Be Or Not To Be (anon) – LL
The Rolling English Road (Chesterton) – RJ

Band 2
Cats (Tessimond) – GW
A Narrow Fellow in the Grass (Emily Dickinson) – BJ
Snake (Lawrence) – WS

Band 3
A Considerable Speck (Frost) – PW
They Say Love Rules the World (Abbott) – RJ
From Windsor Forest (Pope) – GW
On Finding Racks of Butterflies (Prentice) – RJ
Butterfly (Shigeji) – WS

Band 4
The Caged Bird in Springtime (Kirkup) – WS
How to Paint the Portrait of a Bird (Prevert) – RJ
Freedom (Griggs) – PS
The Thing (Roethke) – WS

Side Two

Band 1
To the Cuckoo (Wordsworth) – TC
The Pettichap’s Nest (Clare) – GW
A Blackbird Singing (RS Thomas) – WS
Proud Songsters (Hardy) – PS
The Bird Song (anon) – PS
The Bird (George Macbeth) – PO

Band 2
Ah, Are You Digging on My Grave? (Hardy) – BJ
Barbara Allen (anon trad) – EM unaccompanied
I Pass By In Silence (Clare) – GW
Passing By (anon) – WS
To Mistress Margaret Hussey (Skelton) – LL

Band 3
True Thomas (anon trad) – EM unaccompanied

Band 4
John Riley (anon trad) – PS, vocal and dulcimer

Band 5
The Baron O’ Brackley (anon trad) – EM unaccompanied

Vol 9 – Argo issue numbers DA 58, ZDA 58, ZPL 1102

poetry&song9frontCover picture
Durham Lanscape, by John Virtue, aged 16 years, 7 months

Side One

Band 1
The Drum (Scott) – BJ
At Fifteen I Went With the Army (unknown) – PW
Conquerors (Treece) – WS
Higher Germany (unknown/trad) – FA unaccompanied

Band 2
The General (Sassoon) – MH
Lost in France (Rhys) – WS
Futility (Owen) – RJ
War’s Folly (Anacreon of Teos) – WS
Under the Hazy, Blossom-Laden Sky (Okamoto Jun) – PS
Miners (Owen) – RJ

Band 3
The Blantyre Explosion (unknown/trad) – PL unaccompanied

The Old Workman (Hardy) – TC
A Bushman’s Song (Paterson) – ALL unaccompanied
The Dead Swagman (Nancy Cato) – GW
Waltzing Matilda (Paterson) – ALL, with chorus and instrumental accompaniment

Band 4
Henry Martin (unknown/trad) – TY unaccompanied

Port of Holy Peter (Masefield) – RJ

Side Two

Band 1
The Flying Cloud (unknown/trad) – EM unaccompanied

Cape Horn Gospel (Masefield) – GW
Haul Away, Joe (unknown/trad) – TY and chorus
Fog (Garstin) – PW
We’ll Rant and We’ll Roar (Taicahuano Girls) (unknown/trad) – TY with chorus and concertina

Band 2
How to Treat Elves (Morris Bishop) – PS
Welsh Incident (Graves) – WS

Band 3
The Magic of Names (unknown/trad) – Various
The Reverend Eli Jenkins’s Verse (Dylan Thomas) – WS
Names of Trades (Ewan MacColl) – EM with vocal and instrumental backing

Vol 10 – Argo issue numbers DA 59, ZDA 59, ZPL 1103

10Cover picture: Cushion Cover by Penelope Shoesmith, 14, Brighton & Hove High School, Sussex

Side One

Band 1
Response to the (?Sirens) (Athur Cooper) – GW
Mariana (Tennyson) – PS

Band 2
Lord Randal (trad/unknown) – FA (album cover says it’s Frankie Armstrong, but British Library notes say it’s Ewan MacColl)

Band 3
The Rider at The Gate (Masefield) – WS

Band 4
The Outlandish Knight (trad/unknown) – FA

Band 5
O Sweet Content (Thomas Dekker) – WS
In Time of ‘The Breaking of Nat’ (Hardy) – PW
Sic Vita (Henry King) – MH
All That’s Past (de la Mare) – RJ
Auld Lang Syne (Burns) – EM unaccompanied

Side Two

Band 1
Thanksgivings For the Beauty Of His Providence (Traherne) – RJ
The Country Clergy (RS Thomas) – WS
Ring Out Wild Bells (Tennyson) – TC
Preparations (unknown) – WS
Christmas (Betjeman) – BJ

Band 2
The Innkeeper’s Wife (Sansom) – PS
Moonless Darkness Stands Between (GM Hopkins) – TC
In the Wilderness (Graves) – PO
The Corpus Christi Carol (trad/unknown) – BB (treble vocal) and JN (piano)

Band 3
Peace (Henry Vaughan) – WS
The Pulley (George Herbert) – MH
Last Lines (Raleigh) – WS
I Will Lift Up Mine Eyes Unto The Hills (unknown) – RJ
Tomorrow Shall Be My Dancing Day (unknown) – ST JCC

Vol 11 – Argo issue numbers: DA 60, ZDA 60, ZPL 1104

11Cover picture: The Winter Orchard, by J ??? from St Ives, Cornwall

Side One

Band 1
Sweet Thames Flow Softly (MacColl) – EM, voice, with chorus and guitar
Say Nay! Say Nay! (Sir Thomas Wyatt) – RJ
Heartburn (Lady Otomo no Sakanoue) – PS
Since There’s No Help (Michael Drayton) – TC
I’m Sad and I’m Lonely (trad ballad) – PS, unaccompanied

Band 2
Cleopatra on the Cydrius (Shakespeare) – PW
Go lovely Rose (Edmund Waller) – TC
My True-Love Hath My Heart (Sydney) – PS
Shall I Compare Thee (Shakespeare) – GW
O Mistress Mine (Shakespeare) – PP
To Celia (Ben Johnson) – RJ
Meeting at Night (Robert Browning) – WS

Band 3
The Host of the Air (WB Yeats) – EK
As You Came from the Holy Land (Sir Walter Raleigh) – RJ/GW
My Lady Greensleeves (trad folk song) – JF, plus recorders
An Epitaph (de la Mare) – TC

Side Two

Band 1
Sandgate Dandling Song (trad folk) – SK vocal, plus guitar

There Was a Child Went Forth (Whitman) – RJ
The Salutation (Thomas Traherene) – TC
Adolescence (Patricia Bradley) – PS
Private Countries (Michael Woodhead) – TC
Painting Pictures Out of Words (John Vaughan) – GW

Band 2
To My Sister (Wordsworth) – PO
Death of a Peasant (RS Thomas) – WS
Spring (GM Hopkins) – BJ
Be ‘Mi’ster (William Barnes) – LL

Band 3
When That Aprille with His Shoures Sote (Chaucer) – GW
Sumer is Icumen In (anan) – Critics Group chorus and instrumental
Milkmaid (Laurie Lee) – LL
Our Hold on the Planet (Robert Frost) – PW
The Moor (RS Thomas) – WS
In a Wood (Hardy) – MH

Band 4
Thornably Woods (trad folk) – EM vocal, with concertina

Vol 12 – Argo issue numbers: DA 61, ZDA 61, ZPL 1105

poetry&song12frontaCover picture
King of Prussia, by Stephanie Eldridge, age 15, and Susan Goodfellow of Sutton Common CS School, Sutton, Surrey


Side One

Band 1
A Peasant (RS Thomas) – WS
A Happy Life (Shakespeare) – MH
The Poplar Field (Cowper) – PO
Binsey Poplars (GM Hopkins) – MH
The Unsafe Elm (Hassall) – PO
Throwing a Tree (Hardy) – BJ

Band 2
Mending Wall (Frost) PW
Edom O’Gordon (trad) – EM unaccompanied

Band 3
Song on the Victory of Agincourt (a ballad) – EM, plus Critics Group chorus

The Enemies (Jennings) – BJ
The Castle (Muir) – PO
A Lament for Flodden (Jean Elliott) – HC unaccompanied

Side Two

Band 1
The Eve of Waterloo (Lord Byron) – RJ
The Recruited Collier (A folk song) – FA unaccompanied
Drummer Hodge (Hardy) – RJ
The Misfit (C Day Lewis) – MH
In Memoriam (Thomas) – WS
Six Young Men (Ted Hughes) – EM

Band 2
Memorial Tablet (Sassoon) – PW
The Night is Chilly but not Dark (Lucas) – GW
Anthem for Doomed Youth (Owen) – RJ
An Irish Airman Foresees His Death (Yeats) – EK
Fifty Faggots (Thomas) – WS

Band 3
All Day It Has Rained (Alun Lewis) – WS
Naming of Parts (Reed) – RJ
The Three Ravens (A folk song) – EM and PS
Hialmar (Campbell) – PO
Embassy (Auden) – MH
Next To Of Course God (Cummings) – TC

Vol 13 – Argo issue numbers: DA 62, ZDA 62, ZPL 1106

13Cover picture: Michael Ivor Gilbert

Side One

Band 1
HMS Glory at Sidney (Causley) – RJ
Botany Bay (trad folk song) – TC
Kangaroo (DH Lawrence) – PO

Band 2
The Wild Colonial Boy (trad ballad) – ALL vocal, concertina

Band 3
The Royal Throne of Kings (Shakespeare) – RJ
Jerusalem (William Blake) – MH
London 1802 (Wordsworth) – GW

Band 4
Fourpence a Day (trad ballad) – EM

Get Up (Joseph Skipsey) – EM
The Sleepers (WH Davies) – TC
The Work o The Weavers (trad) – EM, chorus and instrumental ensemble

Side Two

Band 1
Two Tramps in Mud Time (Robert Frost) – PW
I Hear America Singing (Whitman) – GW
Over Here (trad ballad) – PL
In the Cities (DH Lawrence) – PO

Band 2
Leave Her Johnny (trad shanty) – JF and chorus
The Tuft of Flowers (Frost) – PW
Work (DH Lawrence) – PO
Portrait of a Machine (Louis Untermeyer) – WS
The Excavation (Max Endicoff) – GW
The Pigeon (Richard Church) – MH
Storm in the Black Forest (DH Lawrence) – BJ

Band 3
The Big Rock Candy Mountain (trad folk) – TP vocal, banjo

A Glass of Beer (James Stephens) – EK
The Brewer’s Man (LAG Strong) – EK

Band 4
Fron Ulysses (Tennyson) – TC

Vol 14 – Argo issue number: DA 63, ZDA 62, ZPL 1107

14Cover picture: The Sea, by Malcolm Richard Lewis, aged 15, of Staffordshire

Side One

Band 1
Heave away, Me Johnny – EM and chorus

The Storm (Walter de la Mare) – BJ
Never More, Sailor (Walter de la Mare) – RJ
Outward Bound – JF unaccompanied

Band 2
Lament for the Great Yachts (Patric Dickinson) – GW
Net Hauling Song (MacColl) – EM unaccompanied
Seascape (Auden) – BJ

Band 3
Randoph Turpin v Sugar Ray (MacColl) – EM

The Ballad of Billy Rose (Norris) – WS
On his blindness (Milton) – TC
The Blinded Bird (Hardy) – BJ
Hail, Holy Light (Milton) – TC

Side Two

Band 1
Afterwards (Hardy) – MH
Requiem (Robert Louis Stevenson) – WS
Crossing the Bar (Tennyson) – GW
The Bustle in the House (Emily Dickinson) – BJ
In Time of Pestilence (Nashe) – GW

Band 2
Adam Lay Ibounden (Carol trad) – StJCC

St John Baptist (Keyes) – WS
On the Morning of Christ’s Nativity (Milton) – GW
There is No Rose (Carol) – StJCC
King Jesus Hath a Garden (Carol) – StJCC

The Dark Stable (Patric Dickinson) – PO
The Holly and the Ivy (Carol) – SK unaccompanied
Autumn Journal (MacNiece) – TC
Well, So That is That (Auden) – BJ

Band 3
Pieta (Thomas) – WS
Easter Wings (George Herbert) – TC
I Am the Great Sun (Causley) – TC
Praise (George Herbert) – GW
At the Round Earth’s Imagined Corners (Donne) – RJ
His Creed (Robert Herrick) – WS

“Wonderful achievement”
Here’s what The Gramophone magazine made of the series when the final set of four records (Vols 11-14) were issued in 1968:

“Together with the original “Rhyme and Rhythm” set of four records aimed at the 7 to 11’s, the whole anthology is a wonderful achievement, and perhaps the finest single collection of English poetry on disc, with all due respect to so much fine work that is now available.

“We have come a long way from the first tentative beginnings of the spoken word on record, and Argo’s pioneer work over the last decade and more must have shown conclusively that there is a sufficient public for it, otherwise they would not still be at it!”

“Infected with folk”
When the first set of records came out in 1967 the same reviewer gave a health warning over the musical contributions from MacColl, Seeger and the Critics Group:

“The first thing to be said is that the set is heavily infected with folk material, both ancient and modern, sung largely in the very personal style affected by Peggy Seeger and Ewan MacColl.

“There is no middle way here. If you, or your school, like this type of singing then all is well; if not, then it is difficult to recommend the set, for nothing could be more different from the musical settings in the first set (Rhyme and Rhythm), which whether solo or choral were delivered with natural ‘open’ throats.

“Here the tone is deliberately pinched and nasal, which thousands of people must admire. I enjoyed the modern ballads such as Hot Asphalt (roadmakers) and Poor Paddy (railwaymen), but as light relief nothing like as much as the comic verse by Belloc, Ogden Nash and…”

More notes as and when…

Many thanks to eBay sellers James Mounsey and tha_z for going out of their way to provide me with copies of covers of the albums.

~ by folkcatalogue on June 20, 2009.

11 Responses to “(1967) Various Artists – Poetry and Song (14 LPs)”

  1. Thanks for your very informative blog!

    I’m now working on a site with the discography of Ewan MacColl. I’d like to ask your permission to use the information and pictures from this specific post on my site (with relevant links to your blog, of course), as I couldn’t find no information at all about “Poetry And Song” series and I have got none of these LPs in my collection.

    Thank you!

  2. Please can you let me know how to get hold of volume 13 as there is a poem by LAG Strong and he was related to my mum on her father’s side. I would love to be able to purchase this for her for mother’s day. Many thanks for your help
    Rebecca Bottomley

    • afraid i’ve never heard the record and it hasn’t been on sale for decades. not sure what to suggest. any libraries that had it (apart from the British Library) will have thrown it out years ago. so unless someone on here sees your request and has got it and will record it for you…good luck anyway. sorry not to be able to help.

    • Hi. I have a copy of The Brewer’s Man, the poem you’re talking about.
      If you can get me your email address I’ll digitise it for you and send you an mp3.

  3. Thank you for all this information. On vol. 8, the cover picture is ‘The Tame Bird’ by Michael Thornley of Linden Junior School, Leicester.

    I have copies of 5, 7 and 8, and also vol. 2 of the Rhyme and Rhythm series. I am digitally remastering these at the moment, if anyone would like to hear them.

  4. Hi. I have a copy of The Brewer’s Man, the poem you’re talking about.
    If you can get me your email address I’ll digitise it for you and send you an mp3.

  5. I have quite a few of these LPs as the British Council Library in Paris wanted to get rid of them, though unfortunately I missed the chance of getting hold of the books that went with them. When I was a student teacher in London, they were considered an absolute necessity. I also had the privilege of regularly seeing and listening to the Critics Group usually on Saturday nights at the Singer’s Club at the Pied Bull in Kings Cross. On one occasion they performed songs from Sweet Thames Flow Softly and a Merry Progress to London.

  6. fao Rebecca Bottomley
    I have the full set of these records, if you contact me via my site I will be happy to record it for you, cheers! Shane

  7. I did finally manage to get hold of the set of four books ‘Poetry and Song – chosen by James Gibson’ published by Macmillan Education that accompany these records – they are still available second-hand. ‘Sweet Thames Flow Softly’ by the Critics Group is available on CD from http://www.duttonvocalion.co.uk .

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: