Note: Recorded at MacColl and Peggy Seeger's flat in London. (Considerable bleed from flip-side of tape.) Alan Lomax on his admiration for steelworker at mills in Pittsburgh - "cowboys with heavy metals" - the low-key way they deal with danger. Boasting in Sheffield and Lancs. Stone cutting. Enormous jobs that have to be done under impossible conditions. He says he recorded a fantastic series of stories about death. Textile workers' stories about checkers (inspectors) whom workers hated. Tall story from Leeds. Fishermen's and Welsh miners' tall tales. Death a subject for jokes in these dangerous professions. Politics a subject for conversation. Tall stories: Alan Lomax talks about "Moonraker" stories and the "Big Hewer" of Northumberland, sometimes a character of this type was called "Bob Tempest, "Bob Towers" (a variation of Paul Bunyan story). In the Midlands (Derbyshire): Jackie Tor, in South Wales: Isaac Lewis.
About the session: Alan Lomax, Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger in conversation at MacColl and Seeger's flat in London.
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