Here's the Mary Ann Haynes version
The Colour of Amber
Oh, the colour of amber was my love's hair,
And his two blue eyes they enticed me,
And his ruby lips, they being soft and fine,
Oh, many a time they've been pressed to mine.
Oh, I'll go a-fishing in yonder's brook
There I'll catch my love with a line and a hook,
And if he loves me, oh, like I love him,
No man on earth shall part us two.
Now, I wish, I wish, now this is all in vain.
Oh, I wish to God I was a maiden again.
Oh, a maid again I shall never more be,
Whilst apples growed on a orange tree.
singer: Mary Ann Haynes
recorded by Mike Yates in the singer's home in Brighton, Susses, 7 July 1974
from The Voice of the People, CD #11
Here's the (very limited) entry on this song from the Traditional Ballad Index:
Colour of Amber, TheDESCRIPTION: "The colour of amber was my true love's hair." "Many a time [his lips] they've been pressed to mine. I'd fish and catch him "with a line and hook" and never part. It's in vain. I'll never be a maid again.
EARLIEST DATE: 1974 (recording, Mary Ann Haynes)
KEYWORDS: courting love betrayal hair floatingverses nonballad fishing lyric
FOUND IN: Britain(England(Lond))
Mary Ann Haynes, "The Colour of Amber" (on Voice11)
Notes: "The Colour of Amber" is the reverse of "Black Is the Color" with the usual floating verse from the woman's point of view. It is tempting to lump this with, say, "Fair and Tender Ladies," but the amber and fishing verses make it stand aside for me. Yates, Musical Traditions site Voice of the People suite "Notes - Volume 11" - 11.9.02, refers to John Ashton's Real Sailor Songs "The Sailor Boy" [Ashton/Sailor *63] as another version; that does have the amber verse but is a version of "The Sailor Boy"(I) [Laws K12]. "Fair and Tender Ladies" would be a closer match than that. - BS
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