Maria and I had a great time last Thursday morning presenting our first Protest Songs workshop at Brompton Cemetery Chapel in Fulham Rd, Kensington, covering the period from 1381 to the end of the 19th century. A bit rushed, trying to pack a little over five hundred years into just a couple of hours (but there’ll be time to fill in some of the gaps during our next workshop this coming Thursday). We had a fantastic bunch of very enthusiastic and very tuneful singers whom Maria coached through close harmony renditions of The Diggers’ Song, The World Turn’d Upside Down (a.k.a. Working Men of England), and Hard Times of Old England, while I talked about the Peasants’ Revolt, the English Revolution, and made a start on the Chartists.
The Diggers’ Song had mistakenly been attributed to Leon Rosselson on the sheet music we were using, and I pointed this out, telling the workshop participants that the confusion would have arisen from the fact that there is a more recent Diggers song written by Rosselson entitled The World Turned Upside Down. (I imagine you can understand how confusing this all is …)
I remembered that, on 21st June 2014, Maria and I had seen the then 80-year-old legendary protest singer-songwriter perform two of his songs at the People’s Assembly march and rally in London, the second of which was precisely that Diggers song. So, folks, here below is that great man himself performing at the People’s Assembly protest in Parliament Square.