Jon says “An amazing song this, written by Leon Rosselson, whose lack of national treasure status is shameful. Ian Giles sings this and it was always a big song at the Half Moon. I also recently saw Roy Bailey perform it, which was something special.”
This was recorded by Martin Carthy and it’s no surprise to see that it was inspired at least in part by The Aberfan disaster, although there is clearly a degree of bottled rage spiked by wider injustice and inequality. Rosselson is a very clever wordsmith and no slouch on the guitar either and if you aren’t familiar, Rosselsongs is a nifty CD primer, on which you’ll find this. He certainly wears his political heart on his sleeve and the topical songwriting was doubtless fuelled by being part of David Frost’s That was The Week That Was team. I guess poking barbs at the rich and ruling is always likely to ‘do’ for your national treasure ratings. In the alternate world, where fairness is the rule and rewards are just, however, Leon is right up there. Whilst Aberfan may be a tragic blot on the historical landscape (surely never again), depravation and the blight of inequality it fosters are not.