The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #10527   Message #73751
Posted By: Philippa
27-Apr-99 - 12:10 PM
Thread Name: Lyr Req: various songs (mostly Irish)
Subject: Johnny / Courting pleasure
sorry to be so tantalising, Joe, but the song Mick posted does indeed have a lovely air. I sing it starting with another verse:
The high walls of Derry are distant and grey
So is lovely Johnny he has gone far away
He is gone to South[far] America [he is gone to bonny Scotland]
some sweetheart to see
May the high powers above bring him safe home to me

I question the virtue of remaining true to deceiving Johnny, but I usually sing the verse about the blue ribbons and forget-me-nots as I learned it. I don't remember who I heard it from but the song's common enough in singing circles in the north of Ireland. I think the song is published in a compilation by Robin Morton (a Boys of the Lough founder) and that Ann Brolly sings it (?). I know this song by the title "The High Walls of Derry".

The song I thought of when I saw Camilla's request IS in the database THE BANTRY GIRLS LAMENT I have slightly different words, such as "Johnny's gone a thrashing the dirty king of Spain". Dolores Keane, Máire Ní Chathasaigh and Jimmy Crowley all sing that one.
which, if any, of these songs meets your requirements Camilla? Don't forget the other [lovely Johnny]entries in the database.

Courtin's a Pleasure is another problematic title - "Courting's a pleasure but parting's a grief/A false hearted lover is worse than a thief" or "Courting is a pleasure between my love and I...." I can't recall the next line of the second song, a version of handsome Molly with lines such as "drink thee of the cup, love, leave the bottom unto me/For there's wagers made and money laid that married we ne'er shall be" recorded by Kevin Mitchell.

I leave the obligatory lecture on thread titles and contents to A. Nother.