The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #86264   Message #2861210
Posted By: Charley Noble
10-Mar-10 - 02:22 PM
Thread Name: Lyr Add: Old She-Crab
Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Old She-Crab
Here's a transcription of how Dyer-Bennet sings "The Old She-Crab" as recorded on Mark Twain's 1601, Dyer-Bennet Records, © 1962; now re-released by Smithsonian Folkways, © 2006, as a CD

Old She-Crab

The old she-crab was a-sittin' on a post,
Shallow-who, shallow-who
The old she-crab was a-sittin' on a post,
When along came a fisherman,
And took her home to roast,
Singing ring-a-lah, ding-a-lah, doo!

When he got home the old woman was asleep,
Shallow-who, shallow-who
When he got home the old woman was asleep;
So he put it in the piss pot there for to keep,
Singing ring-a-lah, ding-a-lah, doo!

The old woman got up for to do her dew,
Shallow-who, shallow-who
The old woman got up for to do her dew,
And the damn ol' she-crab grabbed her by the flue
Singing ring-a-lah, ding-a-lah, doo!

"What ho!" said the woman, "as sure as you're born"
Shallow-who, shallow-who
"What ho!" said the woman, "as sure as you're born,
There's a devil's in the pisspot, a-stickin' up his horn!"
Singing ring-a-lah, ding-a-lah, doo!

So she tossed the crab in the old man's bed
Shallow-who, shallow-who
She tossed the crab in the old man's bed,
And it bit out a chunk of the old man's head
Singing ring-a-lah, ding-a-lah, doo!

Then the old she-crab's scuttled off to the sea,
Shallow-who, shallow-who
Then the old she-crab's scuttled off to the sea,
Says I might get caught but they'll never eat me…
Singing ring-a-lah, ding-a-lah,
Ding-a-lah, ding-a-lah, doo!


As children my brother and I always took delight in the escape of the old she-crab.

Here's an updated link to how I sing this song: click here for lyrics and MP3 Sample!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble