Category: ISBN: 978 0 7509 9509 2.


Pete’s 4th book for The History Press’ folk tales series. This is a topic made for him!

The publisher’s blurb says: “Pete Castle has spent most of his life playing music and nearly as long telling tales. He has often been described as a ‘wandering minstrel’. He is a storyteller who sings half his stories which is, of course, the old way; the ancient bards often played instruments, sang and told stories. In this book Pete has gathered together a collection of traditional tales in which music calls the tune. Songs can get you both into and out of trouble; dancing can be a wondrous experience but don’t do it in the wrong place or at the wrong time; a musician can be a welcome guest but he can also be frowned on or hounded out of town. From Orpheus with his harp to Johnny B Goode and his guitar is not such a giant step!”

There is a wide selection of stories covering many hundreds of years. Most are from the British Isles but a few from further afield have crept in. Some are well known others should be new to you. (They were to Pete!)

“Pete writes as he talks—easy, relaxed and utterly engaging. I can hear his voice on the page. This book is good company.”     Nicky Rafferty, storyteller

208 pages. Hardback. e-version available from The History Press website, Amazon etc



Glasgerion; Something to Tell ‘em; Sandy/Sandra; On Minstrels, Bards & the Like; Spencer the Rover; Blondel the Minstrel; Robin Hood and Alan-a-Dale; The Two Sisters; Binnorie; The Raggle Taggle Gypsies-O; Johnny Faa; Singing Sam of Derbyshire; The Old Wandering Droll-Teller of the Lizard…; The Mermaid and the Man of Cury; The Mermaid of Zennor; Ion the Fiddler; The Guitar Player; The Devil’s Trill; The Fox and the Bagpipes; Colkitto and the Phantom Piper; The Phantom Piper of Kincardine; Underground Music; Ffarwel Ned Pugh; The Fairy Harp; Dance Til You Drop; The Hunchback and the Fairies; The Legend of Stanton Drew; Jack and the Friar; Jack Horner’s Magic Pipes; The Bee, the Harp, the Mouse and the Bum-clock; Mossycoat; The Frog at the Well; Kate Crackernuts; Orange and Lemon; Hangman, or the Prickly Bush; Tom Tit Tot; Tiidu the Piper; The Pied Piper of Franchville; The Man Who Stole the Parson’s Sheep; Tapping at the Blind; Fill the House; The Show Must Go On; The Grove of Heaven; The Fiddler and the Bearded Lady; Joseph and the Bull; Bragi; King Orfeo; Dagda’s Harp; Etain and Midir; Glasgerion part 2; Jack Orion; The Devil’s Violin; Afterword: Into the 21st Century