The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #72121   Message #2496520
Posted By: Geoff the Duck
18-Nov-08 - 05:59 AM
Thread Name: Origins/ADD: Meet Me Tonight in the Moonlight
Subject: Lyr Add: I WISH I HAD SOMEONE TO LOVE ME (S Rogers
Another variant on the song appears on the Sally Rogers album "Circle of the Sun" (1982). Sally says she learned "I wish I had someone to love me" from Lisa Null. The sleeve insert notes say :-


Apparently, before this song went through the folk process, it was one of Vernon Dahlhart's country hits of the late thirties. It went under the title "The Prisoner's Song" and a snatch of it is used at the end of the Humphrey Bogart movie, Deadend. I learned this version of it from Lisa Null who heard the great Irish singer, Joe Heaney, perform it. Amazing what a few thousand miles of ocean will do to a song.

I wish I had someone to love me,
Someone to call me his own,
Someone to sleep with me nightly,
I'm weary of sleeping alone.
Meet me tonight in the moonlight,
Meet me tonight all alone,
I have a sad story to tell you
I'm telling it under the moon.
Tonight is our last night together,
Nearest and dearest must part,
The love that has bound us together
Is shredded and torn apart.
I wish I had ships on the ocean
Bid them with silver and gold
Follow the ship that he sails in
A lad of nineteen years old.
I wish I had wings of a swallow,
Fly out over the sea
Fly to the arms of my true love
And bring him home safely to me.


Reading the sleeve notes, I am not sure whether Sally is saying that Lisa Null learned the version from the singing of Joe Heaney, or that she had also heard the Irish singer performing a song she knew by other means.

Joe - You list words for "I HAVE A SHIP ON THE OCEAN (Brown #350G)"

The chorus is related to "The storms are on the ocean" (sung by the Carter Family) which is appears to consist of a number of common floating verses tied to the following chorus:-

cho: The storms are on the ocean
The heavens may cease to be.
The world may lose its motion, love
If I prove false to thee.

See full lyrics in the DIGITRAD.

And just a reminder - Can any Buster Keaton fans or Silent Movie buffs identify the film where I saw The Prisoner's Song on a jail wall?