Opie collection of children's games & songs

Recording of children demonstrating songs and discussing playground games with Iona Opie (part 2 of 2)

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  • Subjects

    Children's games; Children's songs

  • Recording date


  • Is part of (Collection)

    Opie collection of children's games and songs

  • Recording locations

    Salford, Greater Manchester, England

  • Interviewers

    Opie, Iona (speaker, female)

  • Speakers

    unidentified (children)

  • Abstract

    Part 2 of 2. [00:00:00 - 00:31:58] This recording continues to record the discussions and performances of the playground games and songs of children from North Grecian Junior School, Salford, Greater Manchester, in May, 1975. The recording begins with the children performing the singing game 'There Came a Jew, a Jew from Spain' [00:00:00 - 00:02:55]. At [00:02:56 - 00:04:55] Iona Opie is with a girl called Susan, aged nine. Susan's friend then joins her and they sing 'The Farmer's in his Den' [00:02:56 - 00:04:55]. Another schoolgirl then explains to Iona how to play a game they call 'Fire Ball'. She tells Iona: 'I made it up'. She had read of an original game she could play in a book but decided that it was 'a bit too hard' and so decided to create this game. While playing this, they sing the song 'London's Burning' [00:04:56 - 00:06:36]. The children then perform the singing game 'Diana Dors'. In this song the children refer to a 'musky' guitar as it is 'rusty' in colour. As the children sing they gradually raise their skirts higher but at the end drop them. Iona notes that they are suggesting: 'sorry boys' as they 'let it all go down again'. When singing this song the children use the tune that often accompanies the song 'My Mother Told Me' [00:12:33 - 00:16:33]. The singing gamesĀ  'Who's Coming In?' [00:20:12 - 00:21:17]; 'Miss Polly Had a Dolly' [00:26:13 - 00:27:04] and 'When I Was One' [00:28:28 - 00:30:08] are also sung. A number of clapping games are performed by the schoolgirls. They begin with 'Under the Shade of the Blackberry Tree' (a variation of 'Under the Bram Bush') [00:06:49 - 00:07:33] and [00:18:23 - 00:18:45]; 'Em Bom Bee' (a variation of 'Em Pom Pee') [00:07:34 - 00:09:33] and [00:17:14 - 00:18:22]; 'My Mother Gave Me a Necklace' [00:09:34 - 00:10:07] and [00:21:18 - 00:26:12]; 'I Had the Scarlet Fever' [00:16:35 - 00:17:13] and [00:18:46 - 00:19:36]; 'I'm Popeye the Sailor Man' [00:19:37 - 00:20:09]; 'A Sailor Went to Sea, Sea, Sea' [00:27:05 - 00:28:27] and 'I Met a Girl From Italy' [00:0:13 - 00:31:58].

  • Description

    Item notes: Recording of children demonstrating songs and discussing playground games with Iona Opie. Speakers' notes: Group of Salford schoolchildren . Recording notes: Slight L/R imbalance, variable throughout. Otherwise, good throughout.

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