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The Elliots of Birtley: A Musical Portrait of a Durham Mining Family

The Elliots of Birtley: A Musical Portrait of a Durham Mining Family

The Elliot family of England was recorded by Peggy Seeger and Evan MacColl on three separate occasions in the summer of 1961 in the kitchen of Em and Jack Elliot. Some 17 people, all of whose lives were intimately tied to the local coal mines, participated in the recording sessions. The music captures the world of the North-East music hall—a world of "pawnshops and epic street-outings, of Saturday night fist-fights, of evictions, of five-in-a-bed to keep warm, of dog fights and quayside belles... It is a world where the policeman and the pitman are always on opposite sides." Liner notes include photographs of the family and short descriptions of each member as well as notes from Seeger and MacColl on the recording sessions. Song lyrics are also included.

Track Listing

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Nancy Grey and Betsy Grey - Betsy Bell and Mary Grey - Child 201 / Stanley Market (medley) Elliot Family 6:18
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Family History / How Much Has Tha Gettin' - How Much Have You Got? / My Father Died a Month Ago / Salvation Army Free from Sin / Mary-Ann Teacake / Pit Lie Idle / Come Up and See Your Grannie / Look on the Wall and You'll See a Big Spider / I'll Tell My Ma When I Get Home / Henry My Son (medley) Elliot Family 9:35
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We Went Along a Bit Further - The Three Jovial Welshmen / Billy the Bob - The Cutty Wren - Hunting of the Wren, / The Sucking Pig / My Mother Says I Never Should (medley) Elliot Family 6:35
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Rhymes Medley Elliot Family 9:35
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In the Bar-room - The Celebrated Working Man Elliot Family 10:08
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Little Chance Elliot Family 16:08
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Elliot Family Medley Elliot Family 3:42