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Jolly Miller, The

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Performer: Smith, Raymond
Place Collected: Bibury
Date collected: Between 1913 and 1916
Collector: Williams, Alfred
Roud Number: 22067

Little is known about this song, which is not to be confused with “The Miller of Dee” or the children’s singing game of the same name.    John Emslie, writing in the 1915 edition of ‘Folk Lore’ wrote:

I can laugh, I can sing, I can drive away care
I’ve enough for myself and a little to spare
If a friend by chance should come by this way
We’ll make him as welcome as the flowers in May.

I heard this song sung as a boy in English Bicknor, Gloucestershire, in 1880.

The tune for this fragment can be found here.

It is a rare song but versions were collected in Yorkshire in the 1960s and Derbyshire in 1970.


Notes by Gwilym Davies 2 April 2016