On Air : 1960s

“Return Of A Stranger” Cinema

BFI synopsis: “Story of a homicidal psychopath.”

BFI credits Martin as “Lift Boy”

Director: Max Varnel

See: Discography

“Hullaballoo” ABC TV Series

Broadcast dates unknown

Also featured Rory McEwan (RM), Lisa Turner (LT), Pete McGurk (PM), Bob Davenport (BD) and Davy Graham (DG)

The following programmes featuring Martin Carthy performances are known to exist:

  • TR#2780 (pilot) Jug of Punch / Ballad of Alphie Hinds
  • TR#2857 Row Bullies Row / Queen of Hearts
  • TR#2874 Lowlands / Duncan and Brady (w/ RM, LT)
  • TR#3170 The Dreadnought / Poor Howard (w/ RM, LT, PM)
  • TR#3181 Leaving of Liverpool (w/ RM, BD)
  • TR#3203 My Girl (w/ RM, LT, DG)
  • TR#3206 Ella Speed (w/ RM, LT)

Soundtrack recordings of Ballad of Alphie Hinds, Duncan and Brady and My Girl appear on CC. A brief clip of Lowlands can be found on the 2002 BBC documentary “Originals: Martin Carthy”. Carthy went on to record Queen of Hearts on his debut album in 1965. Carthy and Dave Swarbrick would go on to perform Row Bullies Row on their ‘first farewell tour’ in 1988 but I don’t know if it ever formed part of their repertoire at any point prior to this.

BFI credits Martin as “Music Performance” on 28/09/1963 and 14/12/1963.

“Hootenanny” BBC TV Series

Broadcast dates unknown

Little is now known of this early ’60s TV series. Despite the title, it doesn’t appear to have had any direct connection with the 1963 “Hootenanny In London” album on which Carthy appeared. CC states: “The title was very much a buzz-word at the time. So far as can be ascertained no recording survives of this short-lived series”

“Hallelujah” ABC TV Series

Broadcast dates unknown

This was a Sunday evening TV series devised by Sydney Carter and featuring Carter, Isla Cameron, Nadia Cattouse, the Johnny Scott Trio and Carthy. I don’t know if any complete programmes still exist but the Fontana LP “Songs from ABC Television’s “Hallelujah” (TL5356) includes the following Carthy recordings (1-6: solo / 7-10: as part of chorus):

  1. Young Sailor Cut Down In His Prime
  2. Wayfaring Stranger
  3. Teach Me My God and King
  4. Like the Snow
  5. John Barleycorn
  6. Rivers of Babylon
  7. Jug of Punch
  8. Cigarettes, Whiskey and Wild, Wild Women
  9. Shalom
  10. Last Night I Had the Strangest Dream.

Carthy would go on to record John Barleycorn on Byker Hill in 1967. Rivers of Babylon can be found on CC. The album also includes a version of The Wife of the Soldier by Isla Cameron, which Carthy learned and recorded on the Byker Hill album and which he later suggested to Maddy Prior for inclusion in the 1977/78 Steeleye Span repertoire. It’s included in this form on the Steeleye albums Storm Force Ten and The Journey.

“Five O’clock Funfair” ITV / Rediffusion TV


Children’s TV Series

BFI credits Martin as “cast member”

Director: John P. Hamilton

Degrees Of Folk BBC TV


Martin Carthy and Dave Swarbrick

  1. Sovay

This was a BBC series filmed in universities around the UK. I don’t know if any other Carthy and Swarb tracks were recorded or broadcast but gthis episode also included contributions from The Corries, Julie Felix, Jackie Toaduff and Billy Pigg. Clips of “Sovay” appeared in an early-80s BBC “Late Show” feature and in the 2002 BBC “Originals” documentary.


“Folksangere” Danish TV

Broadcast date unknown

Martin Carthy and Dave Swarbrick

  1. I Haven’t Told Her, She Hasn’t Told Me (aka. She Still Calls Me Mister)
  2. The Friar’s Breeches / The High Reel

Danish TV documentary about the London folk scene featuring unique Carthy and Swarb performances recorded live in Swarbrick’s flat

“Once More With Felix” BBC2 TV


Martin Carthy and Dave Swarbrick

  1. Byker Hill


“Once More With Felix” BBC2 TV


Martin Carthy and Dave Swarbrick

  1. (Probably) Byker Hill

CC lists a low-qualify, unattributed copy of a BBC TV appearance from 1969 of Carthy and Swarbrick performing “Byker Hill”. This may be from “Once More With Felix” as the pair appeared on the programme on this date. No details of what was performed are available and the complete show no longer exists but I can’t locate another TV appearance of this song from the period using BFI or other sources.


“Chips With Everything”  BBC TV

Broadcast date unknown but probably early 1969


Martin Carthy and Dave Swarbrick

Carthy and Swarbrick appeared in full RAF service dress as part of a concert segment in a TV adaptation of Arnold Wesker’s 1963 play about National Servicemen set in the 1950s.


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