The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #61881   Message #48769
Posted By: Barry Finn
09-Dec-98 - 10:39 PM
Thread Name: Lyr Req: Onboard a 98: Peter Bellamy
I suggested this in another thread & not finding this gem in the DT I'm putting it out there.

One of my favorites (not yet in the DT) is a song that Peter Bellamy wrote a new tune for. Taken from Dan Milner's "Bonnie Bunch Of Roses".


When I was young & scarce 18, I drove a roaring trade
And many a sly trick I have played with many a pretty maid
My parents found that would not do, I soon should spend their store
So they resolved that I should go on board a man-of-war

A bold press gang surrounded me, their warrant they did show
And swore that I should go to sea & face the daring foe
So off they lugged me to the boat, O how I cursed my fate
'Twas then I found that I must float on board a 98

When I put my foot on board, how I began to stare
Our Admiral, he gave the word, there is no time to spare
They weighed the anchor, shook out sail, & off they bore me straight
To watch the foe in storm & gale on board a 98

Before we reached America, they gave me many a drill
They soon learnt me a nimble way to handle an iron pill
In course of time a fight begun, when bold Jack Tars laid straight
What I would give if I could run from on board a 98

But as time flew I bolder grew & hardened was to war
I'd run aloft with my ship's crew & valued not a scar
So well I did my duty do, till I got Boatswain's mate
And damn me soon, got boatswain too on board a 98

So years rolled by at Trafalgar, brave Nelson fought & fell
As they capsized that hardy tar I caught a rap as well
To Greenwich College I came back because I saved my pate
They only knocked one wing off Jack, on board a 98

So now my cocoa I can take, my pouch with 'bacco stored
With my blue clothes & 3-cocked hat, I am as happy as a Lord
I've done my duty, served my King, & now I bless my fate
But damn me, I'm too old to sing, I'm nearly 98

This is on "Peter Bellamy, Tell It Like It Was", trailer records LER 2089. Peter sings this very upbeat on the LP but never as wildly as did in person. Collected by Vaughan Williams. Peter didn't like the tune V.W. collected so he wrote a new one, I don't believe the original could've been better. Barry