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what else is called "skiffle"? can this article be at skiffle?


Good point. I dropped the link... now what is a "Skiffle"?

After looking at the dictionary, I'm not sure anymore... it only lists Skiffle Music.

Main Entry: skif·fle Pronunciation: 'ski-f&l Function: noun Etymology: origin unknown Date: 1926

American jazz or folk music played entirely or in part on nonstandard instruments (as jugs, washboards, or Jew's harps); also : a derivative form of music formerly popular in Great Britain featuring vocals with a simple instrumental accompaniment
Geez, read the article! It's already in there with a cite from the OED saying it means "rent party" q.v. Ortolan88 02:25 Nov 3, 2002 (UTC)

-- "Does Your Chewing Gum Lose It's [sic] Flavour on the Bedpost Over Night?" is the sic for It's or for Flavour spelt the Brittish way? Ahem... that's the article I wrote. THe question was - does the word "skiffle" mean anything else? - jazz77

Ahem yourself. You didn't write the part about the OED. ortolan88


Maybe a better question would be - does "skiffle" refer specifically to the parties themselves, or to the music played at the party? If it refers to the party itself, maybe the Skiffle article should redirect to rent party and "rent party" should mentione Skiffle Music. - jazz7

Acccording to the OED, skiffle meant "rent party", as stated. You're right that the rent party article should refer to skiffle music,(which, in fact, it already does) but a separate article on skiffle would just be a dictionary entry. (I'd guess that skiffle in this sense was a word play on "scuffle", but there's not justification for that.) Ortolan88 02:55 Nov 3, 2002 (UTC)

Over 3 years later skiffle remains a redirect, and I don't see why. Common usage is that the music genre is "skiffle". What the OED says doesn't really matter. Incoming links speak volumes, and they mostly point to skiffle. A move over a redirect is coming your way... :-) --kingboyk 23:07, 4 April 2006 (UTC)

In the days of my misspent Brit youth, we were far more into playing, singing & thumping the ol' tea chest about than the meaning of skiffle. But it appears that Paulo Renato Ferreira Pinto de Oliveira of Portugal may have nobbled exactly what skiffle was & how it came to be: “East-West, Perpetual Motion”: British-American Popular Music Exchange, Paulo Renato Ferreira Pinto de Oliveira, (Universidade de Aveiro, Portugal)

" . . . . When you cannot compete in the same area with the best, you have to invent something new, and that is what the British did in 1952 with the trad jazz revival and skiffle fads that took the nation’s youngsters over in a musicmaking frenzy only comparable with the punk explosion and its DIY ethic. According to Iain Chambers, “skiffle was the first popular attempt undertaken to appropriate parts of American popular music” (45). The inventive skiffle groups had to make do with what they had, for there was a shortage of quality instruments, which is why one of the key instruments was a simple washing board. . . . . " [1]

While not exactly agreeing with the "punk explosion/frenzy" analogy, it came pretty close.  :-)

And, sadly, I do not see "The Vipers" listed anywhere? Lonnie D. was good & great fun, but The Vipers were the first & the best IMHO. Mally 18:35, 11 May 2006 (UTC)

As usual punk gets given a far more important place than it warrants all because its always been the favoured musical movement of the middle class luvvies media class - punk was only ever a small minority pursuit with relatively few people into it - even at its high point years it was overshadowed in every way by other forms of popular music disco being just the most obvious - if there were really 50,000 skiffle groups in Britain in the 50s to even mention punk with probably a few hundred bands ever as something similar is ridiculous - the beat boom of the early/mid 60s was far nearerr in the number of groups formed there were thousands upon thousands = and its influence with mainstream youth.

I'm very disappointed to not find any reference to The Hoosier Hot Shots (a wiki ref) who were playing this sort of music in the 30's, and wound up making 21 Movies (many with Gene Autry) and being a strong influence for Spike Jones and his City Slickers. I am attempting a little Skiffle Rennaisance here in Colorado, and my principal Models are the HHS, the Kingston Trio, and Lonnie. To my way of thinking, the MUSIC is the thing. The fact that Lonnie started the "movement" --- if that's what it was -- in Britain is really just incidental. (Google Hoosier Hot Shots if you want more.) Senor Reek 17:33, 21 October 2007 (UTC)

I disagree. The kind of music you are refering to was known as "Hillbilly" or Old Time. Skiffle was rooted in Jazz and Blues, and the word "skiffle" refers to "Informal Music" Donegan and bands like The Vipers who had been schooled in jazz, took the jazz out of skiffle and replaced it with elements of early American Rock n Roll. The Kingston Trio skiffle? And the Hoosier Hot Shots are credited with starting "Rural Midwestern Jazz". "British Skiffle" was unique to Britain. Cheers, Vera, Chuck & Dave 18:52, 21 October 2007 (UTC)
Coming at it from another angle, skiffle is Jamaican patois for what we would call a skinhead haircut. Nuttyskin (talk) 18:18, 12 September 2019 (UTC)


I was looking to put Category:The Quarrymen into a skiffle artists category but I couldn't find one. If you know of one, could you please do the honours? If there isn't, perhaps we should have a skiffle category with a skiffle artists subcategory? --kingboyk 23:05, 4 April 2006 (UTC)

I won't call the Quarrymen as the well-known skiffle performers. Nobody knew them, no real records made. Just mention the Beatles were influenced by the skiffle music of the time. - Klaus Bertow 19:12, 19 August 2006 (UTC)
The thing is, this is notable because that was the name that the Beatles had before they were the Beatles. So just because of that fact, they are one of the best known skiffle bands (even though they only performed locally, and didn't make any records). Badagnani 19:45, 19 August 2006 (UTC)

Absolutely Ridiculous! The same thing could be said about "The High Numbers" before they became The Who. The only difference would be, that if one were to write: "The High Numbers" were a well known Mod band from London" it, unlike The Quarrymen statement, would be true.

Only a very small amount of people in Liverpool had heard of them, they had no following {except at garden fetes) and released no records. Just because they developed into The Beatles, is no reason to elevate them in the pecking order above real skiffle stars like Chas McDevitt & Nancy Whiskey, or The Vipers, who released a string of hit records. I love The Beatles, but Please The Quarrymen were not one of the best known skiffle bands! Lion King 15:10, 16 September 2006 (UTC) Sorry, I forgot that they played at a few working mens clubs in Liverpool and at the Cavern Club once, where they went down like a Lead Balloon or should that be "Led" Balloon? :) Lion King 17:07, 16 September 2006 (UTC)

Better to light a candle than to curse the darkness, problem fixed in three words, see article. You know, it would be a very poor skiffle article that didn't mention the Quarry Men, it's just a matter of how you say it and it wasn't the least bit difficult to change it so it is useful and correct. All that grumbling above, wasted. Ortolan88 17:42, 16 September 2006 (UTC)
I'm sorry but I disagree. It's a very poor article that mentions The Quarrymen and ignores real Skiffle Stars. And furthermore, I've got every right to grumble, if that's OK with you :) Lion King 17:51, 16 September 2006 (UTC)
Well, edit the article and put Nancy Whisky and The Vipers in there! It doesn't do them or the article any good for you to grumble (all you want and as you like) on the talk page. Talk page talk not backe up by article action is of limited value, IMNSHO.Ortolan88 18:09, 16 September 2006 (UTC)
Alright, calm down. I was just being playful. Article action will commence later as I'm off to do some work now. Best wishes, Lion King 18:31, 16 September 2006 (UTC)


The Vipers were playing Skiffle long before these guys cashed in on it. The Vipers were the reason that they started putting Skiffle into thier set for the kids in the first place.

And yes, "Rock Island Line" was a runaway success but they had picked it up from The Vipers- they didn't know any Leadbelly or Woody Guthrie songs. Donegan left to cash in, as he'd only received a session fee for "Rock Island Line", and began covering every Vipers release, wearing a dinner jacket and backed by a huge record company, even claiming to have co-written Leadbelly and Guthrie songs.Lion King 09:39, 1 October 2006 (UTC)

Why does Lion King keep removing text regarding other groups (not modifying, but entirely deleting), as well as the link between the Quarrymen as an early version of the Beatles? If no explanation, then please restore the deleted text. This is a collaborative effort, not a POV soapbox about which groups you feel are worthy of mention and which you believe should be deleted. Badagnani 20:54, 1 October 2006 (UTC)

There you go I was right, another fight - no thanks. Lion King 21:09, 1 October 2006 (UTC)

I have restored the collaborative effort to I'ts former glory - OK? Bye, Lion King 23:28, 1 October 2006 (UTC)

Band external links[edit]

I removed the large collection of external links for individual bands per WP:NOT and WP:EL. shotwell 00:49, 4 December 2006 (UTC)

I see that I should have commented here first and waited for someone to respond. My mistake aside, is it really necessary to maintain this large list of external links to individual bands? The reason "this is helpful for our readers" may very well be true, but we're not a band repository. Perhaps we could prune this list down by limiting ourselves to bands that have wikipedia articles? There is already an external link containing a list of Skiffle bands[2]. shotwell 03:18, 4 December 2006 (UTC)
I agree shotwell, there are far too many. Cut them down to the bands that have articles. Cheers, Vera, Chuck & Dave 21:37, 7 December 2006 (UTC)
The links allow our readers to pursue further research about contemporary skiffle groups. It has already been mentioned that skiffle is a generally non-commercial form of music and most groups may not have CDs out, and thus would not qualify for their own Wikipedia articles. Please focus on productive editing that adds to our users' knowledge rather than trying to prevent them from obtaining the information they need. Thank you for your interest in this musical genre. Badagnani 22:12, 7 December 2006 (UTC)
Now that's a fair piont Badagnani. Cheers, Vera, Chuck & Dave 19:00, 9 December 2006 (UTC)
Yes, it would seem the Skiffle coverage on wikipedia is lacking. I also cannot find anything in dmoz that we could link to as an alternative. Perhaps this is an exception to WP:EL and WP:NOT (specifically, not a directory). It would, however, be much better if someone knowledgeable about these bands wrote a little something about the more notable ones, rather than merely link to their websites. They may not qualify for their own wikipedia articles, but we could mention them here. shotwell 19:40, 9 December 2006 (UTC)
That would be doable. Some of the German ones have been around for more than 30 years and are fairly well known in their home regions. Badagnani 05:20, 10 December 2006 (UTC)

£50 session fee[edit]

[Lonnie Donegan] "Having been paid just a £50 session fee for the song" etc - £50 in 1956 was an incredible amount of money - no one would have recieved that amount of money as a session fee. I would suggest that it be replaced by: "Just a session fee." Best, 650 Norton (1951) (talk) 14:08, 20 August 2008 (UTC)

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Could someone put Skiffle in the Jazz template and put the Jazz template on this page. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2601:C7:C201:C640:E94D:4B73:B1C5:9911 (talk) 00:34, 19 November 2020 (UTC)

While it's true that, initially, the skiffle style in Britain was played by musicians who also played jazz, it's hard to justify the inclusion of skiffle in the jazz template, in my view. Ghmyrtle (talk) 06:41, 19 November 2020 (UTC)