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Greensleeves (Tune from Thomas Denley)

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Source: Copy of C. Sharp ms no. 2327 in Vaughan Williams Memorial Library
Performer: Denley, Thomas
Place Collected: Sevenhampton
Date collected: 1909 (30 Aug)
Collector: Sharp, Cecil

Cecil Sharp (CJS) noted 6 tunes from Thomas Denley, then aged 72, at Sevenhampton on 30 August 1909. He wrote: “Thomas Danley [sic] played these tunes to me (very beautifully) upon a tin whistle. His father used to play pipe & tabor for the Withington Morris men.. Thomas … although he can play fiddle, clarionet, organ, etc. as well as the tin whistle, could never manage to learn the pipe & tabor. He can play from note but has a great musical memory for tunes and can play a tune at one hearing with great accuracy (This I tested).”

Greensleeves . C. Sharp noted of William Hathaway’s version: “Jig danced over bacca pipes”, and of John Mason’s version “Tobacco pipe dance”, for which this tune was widely used. It also featured at the end of many Gloucestershire mummers’ plays.

In the linked abc file this is  tune number X:1.

Media & Downloads

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

Modern recording performed by: Chris Denley, who plays all the instruments heard.