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Gallant Huzzar

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Source: C. Sharp ms no. 2396 in Vaughan Williams Memorial Library
Place Collected: Bould
Date collected: 11 September 1909
Collector: Sharp, Cecil

Charles Benfield was the main informant for the Bledington tunes, most of which were noted by Cecil Sharp at Benfield’s house at Bould (Oxon), a hamlet about a mile from Bledington (Glos). CJ Sharp wrote, 2 September 1909: “Ch. Benfield was fiddler to the Bledington Morris till it lapsed about 15-20 years ago. He afterwards taught some younger men but could not induce them to continue. He is an agricultural labourer and a keen morris dancer. His fiddle was bridge-less and bow-less so he half hummed and half whistled this & following 2 tunes.”

Gallant Huzzar A song with this title was published on broadsides. Lucy Broadwood and Percy Grainger noted it from the singing of Thomas Beadham in Lincolnshire. (click here to see the words.) His tune bore rather more resemblance to Wm. Hathaway’s than to Ch. Benfield’s. Elisa Carthy can be heard singing it on U Tube.
The modern version cuts short the c in bar 20, at the end of the slow section, reducing the bar to 3/8.

Media & Downloads

See the song/tune as collected (PDF file)
Hear the song/tune (midi file)

Modern recording performed by: Dave Byett

Song/tune as collected (abc file)