The Banks of the Sweet Primroses is one of my many favourite songs as primroses are my favourite flowers and along with all the other songs that I sing. To me it embodies the Sussex countryside and all there is that makes Folk Song and Folk Music such an inspiring music and keeps us in touch with the past. The Copper Family and Shirley Collins are in my mind each time I sing this song.  Martyn


As I walked out one midsummer’s morning 

For to view the fields and to take the air 

Down by the banks of the sweet primroses 

There I beheld a most lovely fair. 

Three long steps I stepped up to her 

Not knowing her as she passed me by

 I stepped up to her thinking to view her 

She appeared to me like some virtuous bride. 

I said fair maid where are you going 

And what’s the occasion of all your grief 

I would make you happy as any lady 

If you would grant me one small relief. 

She said stand off you are deceitful 

You are deceitful and a false young man 

T’is you that’s caused my poor heart to wander 

And to give me comfort lies all in vain. 

I will go down to some lonesome valley 

Where no man on earth shall ‘ere me find 

Where the pretty little small birds do change their voices

And every moment blows a blusterous wind. 

So all young men that goes a courting

I pray pay attention to what I say

There is many a dark and a stormy morning 

Turns out to be a bright sunshine day.