JOHN BARLEYCORN

Latest update on 13/01/2016

Artist: Robert Burns
Author: traditional
Year: 1782

Personification of barley and the alcohol within, doubling for a strong recipe for ale. There's more variations of this song than of any English folk tune. Numerous broadside versions circulate since the 17th century, while it was first published in the Bannatyne Manuscript (1568). It was also the title of a Jack London novel (1913), commenting his battle against booze. When Prohibition was installed in the US, John Barleycorn was symbolically buried during meetings organized by Billy Sunday (of the song Chicago fame).

Covers:

1943:

Mr. Biles [from Dorset on 78rpm]

1956:

A.L. Lloyd

1959:

Jane Hexly & The Hood Singers [English a cappella field recording conducted by Jean Ritchie as John Barleycorn Should Die]

1959:

Shepherd Haden [50 years since he started singing it]

1959:

John Langstaff

1960s:

Brendan Behan [as 3 Farmers From The North]

1965:

Watersons

1967:

Martin Carthy

1970:

Traffic [on album John Barleycorn Must Die; inspired by The Watersons]

1972:

Steeleye Span

1977:

John Renbourn

1978:

Fairport Convention

1978:

Louis Killen

1992:

Jethro Tull

2005:

Robert Burns

2005:

Jim Causley

2005:

Chris Wood

2006:

Frank Black [as Johnny Barleycorn]

2007:

Paul Weller [with Martin & Eliza Carthy]

2007:

Tim Van Eycken

2012:

John Kirkpatrick

Contact


If you noticed blunt omissions, mis-interpretations or even out-and-out errors, please let us know by contacting us:

Arnold Rypens
Rozenlaan 65
B-2840 Reet (Rumst)

info@originals.be

No Facebook No Twitter