Nineteen singers and three very well-behaved dogs came along to our monthly sing at the Chichester Inn. People were in noticeably high spirits and there were lots of jokes and banter, especially amongst the men. Dave G chaired the proceedings and attempted to lead everyone in a stimulating variety of songs, including songs about beer, sailors, shepherds and young lovers. We warmed our voices by singing lustily songs like Gooches Beer and O Good Ale and then went on to sing the Saucy Sailor and All Around My Hat before slowing down the tempo with Searching for Lambs and Shepherd of the Downs. Then as promised months earlier we tackled the elusive third verse of the Song of the Sussex Downsman. With the aid of the music score and Keith’s excellent musical advice we were finally able to sing the whole song reasonably confidently a couple of times. Result!
After a break to refill our glasses, Alan led the assembled company in two rounds: namely Now we wish you many happy returns and Summer’s Here. Stephen A got us all to sing Valiants All, which is a version of Let No Man Steal Your Thyme and had been collected over 100 years ago in the Midhurst Workhouse. This was followed by Chris singing The Devil and the Farmer’s Wife and we all joined in with the chorus of “Lero Lero Lillibullero, Lillibullero bullen a la”. We then sang the Turtle Dove and the Loyal Lover, two tender love songs that Emily has taught us recently at the Lucy Broadwood song workshops in Worthing and Rusper. Finally we picked up the tempo again with The Lark in the Morning and finished the session by singing The Sussex Wedding Song. Thanks to everyone for coming and lending their voices; it was an excellent evening which we all enjoyed immensely. We will meet next month at 8pm at the Chichester Inn on Thursday 15th August. Hope you can join us!