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Master Kilby

[ Roud 1434 ; VWML CJS2/10/2042 ; Mudcat 58570 ; trad.]

Cecil Sharp collected Master Kilby from Harry Richards of Curry Rivel in Somerset both on 29 July 1904 and on 6 January 1909. Nic Jones found it in the Journals of the English Folk Song Society and recorded it for his 1978 album From the Devil to a Stranger. Two live performances were released on his CDs Unearthed and Game Set Match.

John Wesley Harding sang this song in 1999 on his Nic Jones tribute album, Trad Arr Jones.

Alasdair Roberts sang Master Kilby in 2001 on his CD The Crook of My Arm.

Andy Turner sang Master Kilby as the 13 July 2013 entry of his project A Folk Song a Week, crediting Scan Tester via Bob Davenport.

Rob Harbron sang Master Kilby in 2015 on his and Emma Reid’s CD Flock & Fly.

This video shows Jon Loomes singing Master Kilby in January 2015:

John Smith sang Master Kilby on his 2018 CD Hummingbird.


Nic Jones sings Master Kilby

In the heat of the day when the sun shines so freely
I met Master Kilby so fine and so gay.

Well, I pulled off my hat and I bowed to the ground,
And I said, “Master Kilby, oh, where are you bound?”

“I’m bound for the west in hopes to find rest;
And in the arms of my dear Nancy I’ll build a new nest.

And if I was the master of ten thousand pounds
In bright gold and silver or in King William’s crowns,

I would part with it all with my own heart so freely:
It’s all for the sake of my charming Nancy.

She’s the fairest of girls, she’s the choice of my heart;
And her skin shines like silver in every part.

Oh, I gave her some kisses, it was down by the sea shore;
But still she lay asking, lay asking for more.”