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Winifer Odd

[Lal Waterson]

Lal Waterson sang her own composition Winifer Odd, accompanied by Richard Thompson and Martin Carthy on acoustic guitars, in 1972 on her & her brother Mike’s Trailer album Bright Phoebus. A 1971 demo with just guitar accompaniment was included in 2017 on the album’s reissue’s bonus CD.

Maddy Prior and Rosie Kemp with Rick Kemp sang Winifer Odd in 2002 on the tribute album Shining Bright: The Songs of Lal & Mike Waterson.

Ollie King sang Winifer Odd in 2017 on his CD Diffractions. He commented in his liner notes:

This song comes from Mike and Lal Waterson’s seminal album Bright Phoebus. An urban ballad about the life of a woman from birth to death, told in Lal’s inimitably quirky style, it is a wonderful example of how the tradition can e diffracted through a person, and still fit right in.


Lal Waterson sings Winifer Odd

Winifer Odd
Was born on one cold May morning in June
In her grandmother’s bedroom
And they waited all that day for last May to come back again,
But it never came.

Going to school:
The teachers all agreed that she was nobody’s fool,
In fact she was brighter than most.
And they waited for the card from the board to gain her degree,
But it was lost in the post.

Falling in love:
She fell in love with a boy of seventeen years old,
At the age of thirty-four.
And she waited all that fall for him to grow tall and slim,
But he was fat and small.

Waiting for God:
She bent down to pick up a glittering thing and was knocked over by a car.
It was her lucky star.
And she waited for Death to come and wrap her up warm,
But he never came.