Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafeetta

Post to this Thread - Sort Descending - Printer Friendly - Home


Oxford Book of Sea Songs/Boxing the Compass

Richard from Liverpool 29 Apr 11 - 04:57 PM
Ross Campbell 29 Apr 11 - 10:10 PM
Hesk 30 Apr 11 - 01:04 PM
The Vulgar Boatman 30 Apr 11 - 05:09 PM
Ross Campbell 30 Apr 11 - 10:05 PM
Gibb Sahib 30 Apr 11 - 11:33 PM
Hesk 01 May 11 - 05:42 AM
Ross Campbell 01 May 11 - 11:26 AM
Hesk 01 May 11 - 12:57 PM
The Vulgar Boatman 01 May 11 - 04:35 PM
Share Thread
more
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:



Subject: Oxf'd Bk of Sea Songs/Boxing the Compass
From: Richard from Liverpool
Date: 29 Apr 11 - 04:57 PM

I recently got The Oxford Book of Sea Songs ed. Roy Palmer out of the library - it's the 1986 edition. I'm aware that there's a revised and expanded edition entitled "Boxing the compass". I'm wondering if anybody's had the opportunities to compare the two editions, and would be able to tell me:

1) (and most importantly) What are the songs that Roy Palmer has added to Boxing the Compass that are NOT in The Oxford Book of Sea Songs? This review says "He has also added four relatively contemporary songs from the seventies and eighties, bringing the present total to 163" - so I'm basically wondering what those 4 songs are.

2) (less important, but interesting all the same if anybody wants to chip in on this) Are any other significant revisions that someone reading the older version of the book should know about?

Thanks in advance!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Oxford Book of Sea Songs/Boxing the Compass
From: Ross Campbell
Date: 29 Apr 11 - 10:10 PM

From Roy Palmer's introduction to "Boxing the Compass":-

"Note on Revised Edition
Thanks to this new edition, I have been able to make a number of corrections, additions and improvements to my original commentaries and notes. I have added four contemporary songs. Many more would have been possible but, quite apart from economic considerations, the book would have risked becoming unwieldy.
Among merchant seamen the forebitters of old appear to be long gone, replaced when seamen are at sea by the ubiquitous video. Until the 1970s, though, the old tradition of song lingered in fragments such as 'Packed my bag, packed my grip;/I'm not coming back next trip,/Bye, bye, Clan Line'; and this to the tune of Ewan McColl's 'Manchester Rambler';

I'm a tramp ship, I'm a tramp ship on no regular run;
I go wherever the cargoes may come.
I may be in Lagos on Sunday,
But they'll change it to Sydney come Monday.

There were longer pieces too, such as 'Shaw-Savill's Buccaneers (160), which Ron Baxter, a merchant seaman himself at the time, heard sung in 1972 by two ABs on the MV King James.

On the other hand, both ashore and afloat, ratings of the Royal navy, with their greater cohesion and cameraderie, continue to sing and make songs. Three new items come from this background. Two were written respectively by 'Shep' Wooley and 'Bernie' Bruen in 1973 when they were shipmates on HMS Blake. 'Ram it! I'm RDP' (161), true to its title, which means 'Stuff it! I'm leaving', expresses the euphoric feelings of a man about to bid farewell to the irksome restrictions of service life. By contrast, 'The Montague Whaler' (162) is a nostalgic lament at the supersession of a much-loved craft used in the navy for work and recreation. Both songs continue to be sung decades later, and in classic fashion, they have taken leave of their creators and assumed a life of their own, among sailors and landsmen.
'Swallow the Anchor' (163), by Tom Lewis, dates from 1989. It seems an appropriate choice to conclude the book, since the phrase which provides its title means to retire from the sea. The song goes beyond the nostalgic to attain an elegiac quality. Paradoxically, such farewells to shipmates and the sea may well provide inspiration for seafarers to come.

Roy Palmer
July 2001"

More of the material Ron Baxter collected at sea, further songs written by him and many contributions from others may be found in the PermaThread: Merchant Navy Songs.

Ross


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Oxford Book of Sea Songs/Boxing the Compass
From: Hesk
Date: 30 Apr 11 - 01:04 PM

Does anyone else find it annoying when book titles change like this? I nearly bought it again.
I did buy "Classic English Folk Songs", not realising it was a previously "The Penguin Book of English Folksongs".
Buyer beware. Read the small print.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Oxford Book of Sea Songs/Boxing the Compass
From: The Vulgar Boatman
Date: 30 Apr 11 - 05:09 PM

Not especially, but I do find it annoying when editors can't be arsed to check spellings or do a bit of research - it's Montagu (without the final e)Whaler, or check with authors like Cyril Tawney (who was still hale when the book was published)to get the verse order right and all the verses of "Diesel and Shale", which in Palmer's edition simply doesn't make sense. Rant over.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Oxford Book of Sea Songs/Boxing the Compass
From: Ross Campbell
Date: 30 Apr 11 - 10:05 PM

Google Search finds plenty of references to MONTAGUE Whalers, with about half and half between that and MONTAGU Whalers - sometimes both spellings in the same sentence!

Presumably the title change is in deference to the original publisher's property in the original title. Though Oxford University Press may have given permission for the work to be reproduced and revised, it would have been inappropriate for Herron Publishing to use the original title as they have no connection with OUP, who presumably had no interest in re-issuing the title themselves. Similar restrictions would apply to Penguin titles.

An authored or edited title with no specific connection to a particular publisher may appear in many editions from different publishers without change to the original title.

Ross


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Oxford Book of Sea Songs/Boxing the Compass
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 30 Apr 11 - 11:33 PM

Thanks for weighing in with the info, Ross. Very helpful!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Oxford Book of Sea Songs/Boxing the Compass
From: Hesk
Date: 01 May 11 - 05:42 AM

Ross,

Obviously I agree with the non use of the word "Oxford" or "Penguin", but "Boxing the Compass" is so fundamentally differnt a title that anyone would be forgiven for thinking it was an all new book. It has also recently advertised as containing sea shanties, but I find it disappointing in this respect.
I still have this sneaking suspicion that the new publishers are hoping to sell copies to customers, who already have the first version.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Oxford Book of Sea Songs/Boxing the Compass
From: Ross Campbell
Date: 01 May 11 - 11:26 AM

"Boxing the Compass" has now been around for ten years itself. If you were lucky enough to have the "Oxford Book of Sea Songs" from twenty or thirty years ago AND bought "Boxing the Compass", why don't you pass on your spare copy to somebody who will appreciate it. The "new publishers" (2001) make it clear exactly what the book is, as does Roy Palmer in his introductory notes.

Ross


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Oxford Book of Sea Songs/Boxing the Compass
From: Hesk
Date: 01 May 11 - 12:57 PM

Ross,
I did say, originally, that I nearly bought it again. Fortunately I spotted it was a reissue, just in time.
I always look out for new song books at folk festivals, as I think it is a good way of finding new songs. It is disappointing when they turn out to be a book you already have.
Hopefully I can now stop labouring the point, as it is not that important, anyway, and it seems that I am alone in my opinion!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Oxford Book of Sea Songs/Boxing the Compass
From: The Vulgar Boatman
Date: 01 May 11 - 04:35 PM

Sorry about Google, Ross. I was looking at the Admiralty Manual of Seamanship at the time...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate
  Share Thread:
More...

Reply to Thread
Subject:  Help
From:
Preview   Automatic Linebreaks   Make a link ("blue clicky")


Mudcat time: 27 November 8:19 PM EST

[ Home ]

All original material is copyright © 1998 by the Mudcat Café Music Foundation, Inc. All photos, music, images, etc. are copyright © by their rightful owners. Every effort is taken to attribute appropriate copyright to images, content, music, etc. We are not a copyright resource.