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Bluebell Cockleshell 123

song taken from the archive film 'From Scotland with Love'

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Description

The song 'Bluebell Cockleshell 1 2 3' is a promotional film for the archive film 'From Scotland With Love', a 75-minute film from Director Virginia Heath with a score by Scottish musician and composer King Creosote. Made entirely from films from the National Library of Scotland's Moving Image Archive, 'From Scotland with Love' is journey into Scotland's collective past.

The film explores universal themes of love, loss, resistance, migration, work and play. Ordinary people, some long since dead, their names and identities largely forgotten, appear shimmering from the depth of the vaults to take a starring role. Brilliantly edited together, these silent individuals become composite characters, who emerge to tell us their stories, given voice by King Creosote’s poetic music and lyrics.

Produced by Faction North, Crossover, National Library of Scotland Scottish Screen Archive in association with BBC Scotland and Creative Scotland.

Logged-in users can watch the whole film in our new Screening Room facility by following the link on this page.

Questions & Activities

Questions

What is meant by the term 'fisherwife'?

Do you know the original nursery rhyme(s) / skipping song(s) on which this song is based?

Can you sing them?

What do you think "count to sixteen" means?

What is the meaning and purpose of satire?

Activities

Research the history of nursery rhymes as political satires. Explore the hidden meanings of some of these popular rhymes e.g 'Ring a ring of roses', 'Mary, Mary Quite Contrary', 'Oranges and Lemons' etc.

Using the original rhymes and the film's visuals as clues discuss what this song may be trying to say about life and society.

Lyrics to the son 'Bluebell, Cockleshell, 1 2 3' by King Creosote:

Bluebell, Cockleshell, 1 2 3 Stand at ease
Bend your knees
Bow to the west, salute to the east
We're all sitting on our mammy's knees

Bluebell, Cockleshell, 1 2 3
Stand at ease
Bend your knees
Salute to the king
Bow to the queen
What a lot of fisherwives I can see

Ding dong goes the castle bell
So fare thee well my mother
Bury me in the old churchyard
Beside my only brother
My coffin shall be black
Six white angels at my back Two to sing, two to pray
Two to carry my soul away

Bluebell, Cockleshell, 1 2 3
Stand at ease
Bend your knees
Salute to the king, bow to the queen
What a lot of fisherwives I can see

Bluebell, Cockleshell, 1 2 3
Stand at ease, bend your knees
The queen didn't want me so she sent me to the king
The king said close your eyes and count to sixteen

Ding dong goes the castle bell
So fare thee well my mother
Bury me in the old churchyard
Beside my only brother
My coffin shall be black
Six white angels at my back
Two to sing, two to pray
Two to carry my soul away

Bluebell, Cockleshell, 1 2 3
Stand at ease
Bend your knees
The queen didn't want me so she sent me to the king
The king said close your eyes and count to sixteen

Bluebell, Cockleshell, 1 2 3
Stand at ease
Bend your knees
Bow to the west, salute to the east
We're all sitting on our mammy's knees

Clip Details

Resource Rights Holder Faction North
Date 2014
Genre Musical documentary
School Subject English
Subject Matter Children's games, Inner city life
Who Virginia Heath, Director, Grant Keir, Producer, King Creosote, Composer, David McAulay, Music Supervisor, Colin Monie, Editor, Paul Savage, Sound Engineer
Event Commonwealth Games 2014
Attributes Black and White, Colour, Sound
Clip Length 01:05
Film Length 72:52
© Archive film content and stills licensed by National Library of Scotland and other rights holders. Other Website Content Copyright Creative Scotland.
All Rights Reserved.
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