Graham Cookie

FRIDAY, October 4, 2019

Fake Ballads & Tea Shanties…

This is all about bypassing the fat cats and getting music directly to people who are interested using the Internet.

Cookie (Nottingham Cookie, Gramme Cooke) is a guitar player who started in a punk rock in the in the late seventies and played played bass guitar in Solvent Abuse until 1985.  One of his songs is Stingy Jack. I had never heard of Stingy Jack, but my granddaughter, Kayla, found out all about him when doing research on Halloween.

Fake Ballads & Tea Shanties is an album of simple songs that are, of course, modern, but Stingy Jack is very simple, in Eb Dorian, and for that reason could have been written hundreds of years ago.

The legend of Stingy Jack…

Stingy Jack’s story comes from a fable where Stingy Jack invited the Devil for a drink. However, Stingy Jack did not want to pay for his drink, so he tricked the Devil into turning into a coin to pay for the drinks. But Stingy Jack decided not to pay for it. He put the Devil-turned-to-coin into his pocket next to a silver cross, so the Devil would be unable to turn himself back. Jack eventually agreed to release the Devil on the condition that the Devil would leave him alone for a year’s time. The other part of the agreement was that if Stingy Jack were to die in this year, the Devil could not take his soul to Hell.

It turns out that there are many versions of this story, and in another version Stingy Jack not only gets a 10 year release from the Devil but also tricks him again, and this time is released for the  all eternity.

But the real winner here is God. Jack can’t get into Heaven because of his evil life, however he can’t even get into Hades because of tricking the Devil. So he is cursed to wander for all time in the netherworld.

Here is Cookie’s song:

The Story of Stingy Jack

I am the town fool and I stand here before you
Consider my soul for your eternal light
As honest a man you ever could chance upon
Life has dispatched me, why I don’t know

Oh Jack the town fool I know of your story
You tricked the Devil in the Old Apple tree
But life it declares you a gambler, a drinker
And now to that list a liar I add

I am the town fool and I kneel now before you
I cannot deny the charges you bring
It’s true I once chanced my luck on the horses
And an odd single malt often moistened these lips

Oh Jack the town fool for these very reasons
Your comical name appears not on my list
Go from these gates and seek out old Lucifer
For heaven is not to be your place of rest

I am the town fool and I stand here before you
Direct from the gates of heaven I come
A trickster, a gambler, a drinker, a liar
Consider my soul for your eternal flame

Oh Jack the town fool these traits are deserving
Qualities highly prized for my flock
But the last time that our winding paths came together
You tricked me in the Old Apple tree

I am the town fool and I beg of your pardon
For one little jape am I forever damned?
A man is so easily bought with temptation
And desperate was I to steady my hand

Oh Jack the town fool deny I will grant you
The chance to pass through this fiery old gate
But take away with you into the cold darkness
A smouldering ember to light up your way

5 thoughts on “Graham Cookie

    1. “Tea” in the title is new to me too. Fake Ballad apparently just means that some of them sound old but are new, as in written in 2017. I think the title is humorous. I love that he is writing and recording these things and then just letting us by them directly. This is the wave of the future for composers, I think.

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