Bedlam Boys

from by Mazy House

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about

Bedlam Boys is one of the oldest known English folk songs, revived by Steeleye Span in 1971. Painting disturbing scenes of the Royal Bethlem hospital, the themes surround madness, obsession and the workings of an institutionalised mind. We recommend looking into the background of the song; we have arranged an abridged version of the story with selected verses but there are many fantastic, fascinating and boldly gruesome lyrics found in old records of the song. It is a short tale that still inspires with its haunting relevance today.

lyrics

For to see mad Tom of Bedlam
Ten thousand miles I'd travel
Mad Maudlin goes on dirty toes
For to save her shoes from gravel

Still I sing bonnie boys
Bonnie mad boys
Bedlam boys are bonnie
For they all go there and they live by the air
And they want no drink nor money

I went down to Satan's kitchen
To get my food one morning
And the souls I got were piping hot
All on the spit a turning

Still I sing bonnie boys...

My staff has murdered giants
And my bag a long knife carries
For to cut mince pies from children's thighs
With which to feed the fairies

Still I sing bonnie boys...

And when that I have murdered
The man in the moon to a powder
His staff I'll break
His dog I'll shake
And there'll howl no demon louder

Still I sing bonnie boys...

For to see mad Tom of Bedlam
Ten thousand miles I'd travel
Mad Maudlin goes on dirty toes
For to save her shoes from gravel

Still I sing bonnie boys...

credits

from Bedlam EP, released November 2, 2015
Traditional. Arrangement by Mazy House.

Ben Allen - Vocals
Joel Tait - Guitar & Vocals
Rosie May - Vocals
Tanya Allen - Violin & Vocals
Andrew Rock - Mandolin
Emma Holbrook - Percussion

Engineered by Ben Modley, Joel Tait & Tony Leach

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about

Mazy House Watchet, UK

We are born of Somerset where Mazy means mad, and the Ancient Mariner mourns the sea alongside Shantyman sailor, Yankee Jack.

Publicans, farmers and nomads, we came together in early 2015; some old friends, others new. We draw raw sounds and inspiration as a group of artists with individual journeys. Gigging, exploring and studying, from our home and across the world.
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