Contents and Reference

(Follow links to find music on Amazon.)

  • 1. Dance to your Daddy
    Published in Fordyce’s Newcastle Song Book, 1842.
    The Shanty Lads sing it on the album: To Our Fisherman’s Friends – a collection of sea shanties, 2009
    Available on Amazon
  • 2. Mocking Bird
    Origin unknown, collected by Ruth Crawford Seeger and published in American Folk Songs for Children, 1948.
    Adelaide van Wey (with Pete Seeger) sing it on the album: Songs to Grow On, vol 2 Schooldays, 1951
    Available on Amazon
  • 3. I had a Hen
    Published in Popular Rhymes and Nursery Tales, James Halliwell-Phillipps, 1849.
    Wally Whyton sang his version The Cat Went Fiddle-I-dee (with Pussycat Willum) on children’s television in the 1960s, it is on his album: The Classic Collection: Nursery Rhymes and Songs, 2015
    Available on Amazon
  • 4. Jeremiah
    Origin unknown. This rhyme, and others like it, may derive from Jeremiah 6: 29 (King James Bible): “The bellows are burned, the lead is consumed of the fire” (a popular text for hellfire preachers).
  • 5. Poor Pussy Cat
    Childhood memory of an old lady. Collected by Iona and Peter Opie. Oxford Dictionary of Nursery Rhymes, 1951.
  • 6. I love little Pussy
    Attributed to Jane Taylor (1783-1824), published in: The Only True Mother Goose, Munroe and Francis, Boston, 1833
  • 7. My Bonnie Wee Laddie
    Traditional Gaelic lullaby published in The Celtic Lyre, 1898.
    Ann Mayo Muir sings it on the album: A Water over Stone, 1980
    Available on Amazon
  • 8. Leg over Leg
    Published in: Children’s Rhymes, Addison Crofton, 1901.
  • 9. Wrap up, Roll up
    Traditional Northumbrian folk song collected by Percy Snowdon and published in: Northumbrian Folk Songs, 1980.
  • 10. The Fidgety Bairn
    Traditional Scottish lullaby arranged Hugh S Roberton, 1874-1952
    (Jean used to sing this song accompanying herself on the viola, the movement of her bow and fingers gave the impression of a fidgety bairn in her arms).
    Emily Mair sings it on the album: Songs My Father Taught Me, 2010
    Available on Amazon
  • 11. Hob-a-shoe, hob
    Collected in the 1940s by Ann Driver, who presented the BBC radio programme Listen With Mother from 1950-82.
  • 12. This Little Piggy
    Earliest version found in The Nurse’s Song, 1728.
  • 13. Land of the Silver Birch
    A traditional Canadian folk song dating from the 1920s (or earlier), this version is a boy scouts’ campfire song.
    Michael Mitchell sings it on the album: Canada is for Kids, vol 2, 2006
    Available on Amazon
  • 14. Irish Lullaby
    A short version of The Old Turf Fire, collected by Norman King.
    Maddie Prior (with Steeleye Span) sing it on their album: Horkstow Grange, 1999
    Available on Amazon
  • 15. Night Herding Song
    A cowboy folk song which Jean first heard when American soldiers arrived in Britain after 1941.
    Cisco Houston (with Pete Seeger) sing it on the album: Songs to Grow On, vol 2 Schooldays, 1951
    Available on Amazon
  • 16. Round and Round
    Teddy bears became popular after 1907 when US President Teddy Roosevelt was given one following an unsuccessful hunting trip. Collected by Iona and Peter Opie. Oxford Dictionary of Nursery Rhymes, 1951.
  • 17. Woodpecker’s hole
    A song from the navy, sung by boy scouts for many years.
    Recorded in 1955 by Alan Breeze (with the Billy Cotton band)
  • 18. Thumbkin, he can dance
    Mentioned by a correspondent to Notes and Queries in 1850, and dates from the previous century.
  • 19. Can ye sew Cushions?
    Published in: Scots Musical Museum, vol 5, 1793.
    Christina Stewart sings it on the album: Kist o’ Dreams, 2010
    Available on Amazon
  • 20. Louisiana Lullaby
    Miriam Berg, the American folk song collector, learnt it from her mother. 
    It is a girl scout song which Jean sang as a girl guide.
  • 21. Faerie Lullaby
    An Coineachan, the Gaelic version of this song, first appeared in: The Duanaire, edited by D. C. Macpherson, 1864. This English version can be found in Rhymes Old and New, collected by M E S Wright, 1900
    Christina Stewart sings it on the album: Kist o’ Dreams, 2010
    Available on Amazon
  • 22. The Neat Little House
    Short version of the Welsh nursery rhyme Mae Gen I Dipyn O Dy Bach Twt, also known by the name of its tune: Robin Ddiog (Lazy Robin), a Welsh dance.
    Dafydd Iwan ac Edward sings it on the album: Cwm Rhyd y Rhosyn 2, 2010
    Available on Amazon
  • 23. Baby Bunting
    First published in: Gammer Gurton’s Garland, 1784.
    Bunting is a term of endearment, which also means plump.
  • 24. Tula Baba
    A Zulu lullaby Jean heard when visiting her cousin in South Africa. 
    It is normally sung by a mother to reassure her child that father will return, but Jean saw many young children cared for by their father.
    Soweto Gospel Choir sing it on the album Voices from Heaven, 2005
    Available on Amazon
  • 25. Bat, bat, come under my hat
    Library of Congress: Collected by Stetson Kennedy and Robert Cook Florida, circa 1940 (It is a traditional saying in our family).
  • 26. Sing, Sing
    Published in “Songs for the Nursery”, 1805.
    A performer’s appeal for what to sing next. When children take turns at singing, this rhyme may be used between songs.
  • 27. Katie Beardie
    The Scottish poet Sir William Mure mentions a dance tune “Katherine Bairdie” in a manuscript of 1628
    Included in: Twinkletrax – Scottish Childrens’s songs, 2010
    Available on Amazon
  • 28. This is the way the ladies ride
    Published in 1849 by James Halliwell-Phillipps, in: Popular Rhymes and Nursery Tales.
  • 29. A Farmer went a-trotting
    Published by J Harris in 1805, in: Original Ditties for the Nursery.
  • 30. Dream Angus
    Possibly written in Edinburgh (in English) in the 19th century by Mary Fraser.
    The tune is based on the Gaelic lullaby Nam bu leam fhin thu thaladhainn thu
    (If you were mine I would lull you).
    Christina Stewart sings Dream Angus on her album Kist o’ Dreams, 2010.
    Available on Amazon
  • 31. The Word was born a Baby
    Jean wrote this Christmas song in 2012. It has been sung in Kilfinan Parish Church, accompanied by Jean on viola. 
    The tune is adapted from the Eriskay Love Lilt, a song from the Western Isles, collected by Mary Kennedy Fraser in 1905. Eleanor McCain sings Eriskay Love Lilt on her album Intimate, 2001
    Available on Amazon