All That's Changed vol 2

by The Living Archive Band

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The second selection of the best of the songs.


released June 2, 2009

Marion Hill & Sue Malleson: vocals
Brad Bradstock: vocals, guitar
Paul Clark: guitar, bass, vocals
Kevin Adams: fiddle, mandolin, guitar, vocals

Recorded, mixed and mastered by Kevin Adams at StudioBlend.



all rights reserved


The Living Archive Band Milton Keynes, UK

An acoustic quintet with an emphasis on strong vocals to deliver both songs and the spoken word depicting the experiences of the people of North Buckinghamshire past and present. The inhabitants of the towns of Wolverton, Stony Stratford and Bletchley and of course the new city of Milton Keynes all have had something to say, and the Living Archive Band gives them a voice. ... more

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Track Name: All Change
All Change
Words & music: Kevin Adams

When this story first began, when Adam delved and Eve she span
Who was then the gentleman? I hear the ploughman cry
Rich man safe in his estate, poor man sits outside the gate
How much longer will he wait before he questions why?

All change, all change
Listen well and heed the call
All change, all change
See the writing on the wall
Change is coming for us all

Once I walked while master rode
Once I carried master's load
Laboured under master's goad
Swayed by master’s hand.
Iron forge and coal to burn has
Thrown the future in the furnace
Step out boldly on the journey
Leave behind the land.

Ploughman walks away from sorrow
Turns his back on field and furrow
Lends his strength unto tomorrow
On the iron way.
This soil here turned once for ever
Lines laid here that none can sever
Brings the distances together
Hastening the day -

All change , all change etc.
Track Name: Sheltered Lives
Sheltered Lives
Paul Clark

Now Wolverton's a place with an easy gentle pace
It's a railway town of no great renown
But to us that's no disgrace.
The summit of success is a job with LMS
With a terraced house, contented spouse,
And in time two kids or three
Who in their turn will grow to learn
To want no more than we.

Suppose we tried to say what really makes our day
It would be hard to know, 'cause things always go
In that same old simple way
The hooter tells us when it's time for work, and then
Its familiar call reminds us all
That it's lunchtime- twelve till one
One last time it blows, the whole town knows
That another day is done.

The works doors open wide, the workers move inside
Anyone could say as we start our day
That we feel a quiet pride
Our work requires our skill, our manliness and will
'Cause you know each lad will follow dad
Who taught him what to do
In a job that's sure, safe and secure
That will last a whole life through.

Just look across the square, the War Memorial's there
With the names marked down of the boys from town
Who copped it over there.
Depression times were tough, there just never was enough
But through it all survives the sheltered lives
That we've lived amidst these fears
Should war come again, we'll be the same
As we've been through all these years.
Track Name: It's Dirty, It's Dusty
It’s Dirty, It’s Dusty
words & music: Paul Clark

It’s dirty, it’s dusty, it’s noisy,
And it fair gets you down now and then
But when we leave from here in two months or a year
We’ll never be craftsmen again

The Wolverton Works are downsizing
It’s part of a Government ploy
It seems they don’t care for the carriage repairs
That I’ve worked on since I was a boy.

I came as fourteen as apprentice
Like my Dad and my Uncle before
And I’ve got all my skill and I love my job still
But I’m sure that they’ll show me the door

The word they have for it is progress
Replacing the old with the new
With some software you see they’ll eliminate me
And all that I’m able to do

From the stink and the noise of the foundry
To a silent old house on my own
And it isn’t just me; it’s the whole town you see
It’s the finish of all we have known.
Track Name: Bright Battalions
Bright Battalions
Words& music: Kevin Adams

So far away, those days of light
When the boys were all marched off to fight
Lines of volunteers in bright battalions
Marching into gathering night.
Heads held high and full of pride
We were assured that God was on our side
Death lay waiting for the bright battalions
Death was not to be denied.

They shall not grow old
As we that are left grow old
They shall not grow old.

Khaki drill and field grey
See them spread before the guns’ array
Lines of sacrifice in doomed battalions
Fritz and Tommy had to pay.
There's a look I recognise
When I see it in a soldier's eyes
You were there among the doomed battalions
You saw death with no disguise.

Now it's done and I survive
Why should I be spared and left alive
I am not numbered with the bright battalions
My call up failed to arrive
The paper poppies tumble down
A single bugle lets the last post sound
Age shall not weary the bright battalions
In memory only they are found.
Track Name: Stony Stratford
Stony Stratford

Stony Wakes Up
Words: Rib Davis & Kevin Adams
Music: Rib Davis

Morning comes to Stony Stratford
Pavements swept and awnings out
Waiting for a new day’s trading
This is what the town’s about
Hard to picture now the coaches
Rattling through by night and day
Weary travellers seeking rest or
Horses hungry for their hay

But it’s still the place to fill your tankard,
Still the place to shake hands on a deal

A Country Town
Words & music: Eileen Rafferty & Kevin Adams
Music: Eileen Rafferty

Stony Stratford’s a country town,
A farming place, you can feel it in the ground
Bustle in the street as the world turns round
From early in the morning ‘til the sun goes down

Mayhem on cattle-market day
Deals done and dusted in the good old way

Out on the allotment, there’s food for free
You bend your back to feed the family
Cabbages and carrots, cauliflowers and swedes
Prizes for your struggle with the slugs and weeds
Chickens, ducks and turkeys getting in the way
The goose is fattening for Christmas Day
Out in the hedgerows all is gathered in
For blackberry crumble and the old sloe gin

Children playing out come rain or shine
The skipping rope is mother’s washing line
Marbles in the playground, a giant or a titch
Or watch them playing hockey on the York Road pitch
School is over they leave the town behind
Over the fields to see what they can find.
Swimming in the river, climbing all the trees
Throwing stones and calling names and grazing knees

Seasons pass, another year has gone
Nothing very different and life goes on
But blink quick, and sadly you will find
All these pleasures will be left behind.

Stony Stratford’s a country town,
A farming place, you can feel it in the ground
Bustle in the street as the world turns round
From early in the morning ‘til the sun goes down
Track Name: Tom Worker's Song
Tom Worker’s Song
Kevin Adams

I went over to Wolverton Works
With a reputation as a lad who never shirks
I was pleased as Punch when they offered me a place
Couldn't wait to see the look on Mother's face.
If I had my way I'd be working on the land
But the next best thing is working with me hands
No vacancies for chippies or in the foundry,
So apprentice electrician I will be.

Five in the morning, standing in the rain.
Blast that Billy if the tram is late again
Half past twelve we stop and have a break
I find the hours very hard to take.
There's a meal each day in a basket from me mam
She sends it over with Billy on the tram.
For a lad of fourteen it's a long hard slog
Each night I come home tired as a dog

A few years on, a simple life I’ve made
Earning money and I’m settled in my trade.
But in the world outside there’s trouble in the air
And the working man must fight for what is fair.
Now the gates are locked, and the Union says strike
Teach the bosses not to do just what they like
The miners lead, we can’t stand and watch them fail-
Why did we fight the Somme and Passchendaele?

Nine short days, the end of the strike
Do you think the bosses can do anything they like
Will they have me back, are they taking on men?
Can it ever be the same again?
Someone said that the railway lads have heard
That their jobs are safe the bosses gave their word
Well fine for them but it doesn't ease my fears-
There's plenty more been kicked out on their ears.

Now a young man starts to feel so old
Now my threadbare jacket doesn't keep me from the cold
I've a wife and a child depending on me
What the future holds I can't begin to see.
Track Name: Letters Home
Letters Home
Words & music: Paul Clark

Dear parents, we hope you’re OK
We’re having a wonderful stay
We dare not upset her, so here in this letter’s
What Teacher permits us to say.

It really is strange, having school in a Scouts’ Hall
But lessons go on in the same dreary way
But the part that I like is Geography class
Where we walk on the tow-path for half of the day
While the Teacher’s not looking, I’ll written this bit down
We’re having a fight when we go out to play.

I’ve bought a new top and I wish you could help me
The boys on my street they can spin it with ease
There’s a small leather whip that they snap and they crack
And it makes the top spin for as long as they please
But when I do the same it just falls in the gutter
While they circle round me to laugh and to tease.

It really is fun when the snow’s thick and heavy
With sledging and snowmen there’s so much to do
Down the front garden path it’s just perfect for sliding
Perhaps Mr. Lovell will have a slide too
When he comes home from work, hey just think of the fun
All us boys throwing snowballs at girls after school.

Christmas is near, we look up to the heavens
But each night a searchlight it blocks out the stars
I have written a letter to old Father Christmas
To ask for a gun, or a big armoured car
That I’ve seen in the toyshop, when you come for Christmas
I’ll take you to see just how smashing they are!
Track Name: On The Breadline
On The Bread Line

Words: Eileen Rafferty & Sue Malleson
Music: Eileen Rafferty

It was fine when Stony was flourishing
You could earn a good purse
All that's changed now and down at the railway
Well, things couldn't get much worse
There's short time for most workers
And for youngsters just begun
They've got no work to give them
So it’s out at twenty-one

And it's hard times on the breadline
And it's hard times on the breadline

It's alright for those that’s got any work
They can depend on their pay
From hard labour though you would never shirk
You’re living from day to day.
And even Hayes the boatyard
That employed so many men
Has closed down altogether,
Won’t be buil;ing boats again

Times are hard for shops on the High Street
They give you credit for a while
Though they help, when you’re living off charity
It’s hard to raise even one smile
For Hazeldines the Bakers
Said we needn't pay at all
But it makes you feel so useless
When your back's against the wall.
Track Name: The Parapet Song
The Parapet Song
Words & music: Paul Clark

I sit on the parapet, day is a-breaking,
I sit and I wonder, is Jerry awake?
I’d like to look over, see day at it’s waking,
But snipers are quick if you make a mistake
Back in the town where I was born
People are stirring this midsummer’s morn
They have no cause to fear someone waiting to shoot them
It’s only dawn’s chill makes them shiver and shake.

When Kitchener pointed his forefinger at me
I took up the challenge, went off to enlist
The barracks and square-bashing didn’t deter me
Of the life I’d left there was little I’d missed.
I hadn’t seen troops take a shell’s direct hit –
Bullets and barbed wire that tear men to bits
Now the life of a soldier looks differently to me
I don’t play the hero, just try to exist.

When I close my eyes I see all the old places –
The great carriage works stretching down Stratford way
And all of my friends there, I see their tired faces
As they come through the gates at the end of the day
The places we walked, the tow-path, the track –
Half of me wishes that I could be back there,
But there’s no use wishing what simply can’t happen,
I’m here till it’s over, and done come what may.
Track Name: The Shrimp King
The Shrimp King
Words & music: J unningham

Buy some oysters from Harry Busby
Live every week from Yarmouth Town
He doesn’t have the stomach to be cheeky with the barmaids
His brother Bert is six feet down

Bert Busby sold whelks and winkles
He was known as the Shrimp King
Now that the King has gone to meet his maker
He won’t be selling anything

He went round the village with a wagon and a pony
You’d know him by the sound of his brass bell
Fish was laid out marvellous with parsley
Now he’s laid out just as well

Mr Seabrook, undertaker
Gave Mr Busby his final shave
And a sober regular funeral
So all his friends gave a goodbye wave,
A goodbye wave
A goodbye wave
Track Name: Orange and Blue
Orange and Blue
words & music: Paul Clark

Workman and sound, orange and blue,
Walls in redbrick, ghosts passing through,
High broken windows catching the sun,
Bending, reflecting,
Can’t think it soon will be gone.

Once there was power, action and noise,
Fathers with skills, apprentice boys,
But now they stand in uncertain light
Knowing it’s going,
Feeling they’ve lost the fight.

Man and machine, partners in toil
Look intertwined, enmeshed and encoiled
Barbed wire now tangles people and gates
Sensing an ending,
Knowing it’s all too late.
Track Name: A Few Coppers
A Few Coppers
words & music: Neil Mercer

Oh times are very bad for business
The shopkeepers all say
When half of the people walking down High Street
Are stretching what they've got to buy enough to eat
There's not much prospect of employment
Unless you move away
So be glad of what you've got and do the best you can
A few coppers go along way.

But it's not enough sometimes
And you know sometimes-
I wonder what it's all about.
What we put away for a rainy day
Just seems to have run out.

But things seem better when the fair comes
For those two magical days
Each penny that you save will mean an extra ride
A few coppers go a long way.

Oh the fair brings folk to Stony Stratford
From near and far away
There's PC MacAdam from his Bradwell beat
And families from Wolverton to join the treat
From Market Square down to the Horse fair
There's loads to do each day
So pitch yourself a coconut on Oxford Street
A few coppers go a long way.

But it's not enough sometimes
And you know sometimes-
I wonder what it's all about.
What we put away for a rainy day
Just seems to have run out.

Oh times are very bad for business
And they may stay that way
So be glad of what you've got and do the best you can
A few coppers go a long way
Track Name: Little By Little
Little by Little
Words & music: Kevin Adams

Little by little and day by day
Step follows step as we go on our way
My heart says we're gaining, my head says not so
Little by little with nowhere to go.

The children are wearing their second hand clothes
They've known no different to these, I suppose
They don't know how much we feel we’re to blame
Little by little feeling more shame.

There's plenty of ways to help a family pull through
There's plenty of tricks and we've tried quite a few
She takes in sewing and I turn my hand
To any odd jobbing, nothing very grand.

Times may get better or times may get worse
If you go down fighting you won’t be the first
One against many the self made man stands
But he’s just like the others- another drowning man.
Track Name: The Night the Stones Rolled Into Town
The Night the Stones Rolled Into Town
Music: Neil Mercer words: Neil Mercer & Kevin Adams

I was just 15, it was the year that I left school
Levi jeans, Ben Sherman shirts were what we thought was cool
In your Burton's made-to measure, you're nobody's fool
Getting used to working weekdays, living by the rules,
‘Til the weekend came around

Wilton Hall was paradise for all us music fans
Dancing there on Friday nights to the latest bands
And the man behind it all, I'd like to shake his hand-
It was Ron King who wore the crown
On the night the Stones rolled into town

And we were living for the future, glad to be alive
Then one day you wake and find the future has arrived

In Makario’s coffee bar, before the show that day
Sipping our espressos, sang 'Not Fade Away'
Nowhere else to got to, happy just to stay
While the world went spinning round
On the night the Stones rolled into town

We went into Wilton Hall, on that famous day
Right up to the stage, and there we stood and watched them play
I can still remember, just like yesterday
How Keith made that guitar sound-
On the night the Stones rolled into town.