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The Water is Wide - one more time!

DigiTrad:
OF LATE I'VE BEEN DRIVEN NEAR CRAZY
WALY WALY (JAMIE DOUGLAS)
WALY, WALY 2
WALY, WALY 3
WATER IS WIDE
WHEN COCKLESHELLS TURN SILVER BELLS (Waly, Waly)


Related threads:
Water is Wide - strange version (2)
(origins) Lyr Req: Help! Version of Water Is Wide (25)
Lyr Req: Psalms sung to 'The Water is Wide' (38)
(origins) Origin:The Water Is Wide-Waly Waly+Carrickfergus? (36)
(origins) Origins: Waly, Waly - Water is Wide (31)
(origins) Water Is Wide - First American Version (40)
artist that sings The Water is Wide (33)
Jamie Douglas(Child #204)June Tabor version source (3)
Lyr Req: Water is Wide (6) (closed)
Tune Req: A Ship Came Sailing (coll. Baring-Gould) (14)
Lyr Req: The River Is Wide...My Love and I (14)
The Water Is Wide (Susanna Hoffs) (9)
Lyr Req: there is a ship and she sails the sea (15)
Lyr Req: June Tabor's Waly Waly (6)
Help: Looking for recording of Water is Wide (36)
(origins) Water is wide: song history request (38)


Tootler 22 Feb 08 - 03:55 PM
GUEST,TJ in San Diego 11 Feb 08 - 04:14 PM
open mike 11 Feb 08 - 03:30 PM
GUEST,Tom Bliss 11 Feb 08 - 02:16 PM
GUEST,highlandman 11 Feb 08 - 02:00 PM
Stringsinger 10 Feb 08 - 04:15 PM
GUEST,Dave 09 Feb 08 - 09:53 PM
frogprince 17 Feb 07 - 11:28 PM
GUEST,Mary 17 Feb 07 - 07:16 PM
GUEST,Tunesmith 31 Oct 03 - 07:09 AM
GUEST 30 Oct 03 - 06:14 PM
George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca 07 Jan 03 - 11:20 AM
John Minear 07 Jan 03 - 08:43 AM
GUEST,Q 06 Jan 03 - 10:47 PM
Malcolm Douglas 06 Jan 03 - 10:46 PM
GUEST,Q 06 Jan 03 - 10:42 PM
George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca 06 Jan 03 - 10:06 PM
GUEST,crazy little woman 22 May 02 - 11:34 PM
GUEST,Van Lingle 22 May 02 - 06:42 PM
dick greenhaus 23 Jun 99 - 09:29 PM
Joe Offer 23 Jun 99 - 02:58 PM
Piepskopf@aol.com 23 Jun 99 - 02:32 PM
murray@mpce.mq.edu.au 22 Jun 99 - 10:30 PM
John Hindsill 22 Jun 99 - 09:23 PM
22 Jun 99 - 07:30 PM
Penny S. 22 Jun 99 - 05:54 PM
Joe Offer 22 Jun 99 - 05:42 PM
Penny S. 22 Jun 99 - 05:34 PM
Art Thieme 22 Jun 99 - 05:07 PM
katlaughing 22 Jun 99 - 04:52 PM
Legal Eagle 22 Jun 99 - 04:08 PM
Night Owl 22 Jun 99 - 02:56 PM
emily rain 22 Jun 99 - 02:36 PM
Jeri 22 Jun 99 - 10:00 AM
Roger in Baltimore 22 Jun 99 - 09:21 AM
Art Thieme 22 Jun 99 - 09:05 AM
Easy Rider 22 Jun 99 - 08:47 AM
Alan of Australia 22 Jun 99 - 08:36 AM
Folksie Lady 22 Jun 99 - 07:31 AM
Joe Offer 22 Jun 99 - 07:28 AM
Folksie Lady 22 Jun 99 - 07:01 AM
Joe Offer 22 Jun 99 - 06:44 AM
murray@mpce.mq.edu.au 22 Jun 99 - 06:33 AM
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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide - one more time!
From: Tootler
Date: 22 Feb 08 - 03:55 PM

From Allan of Australia, writing in 1999

Professor Child, writing in 1890 (or earlier) says that "Waly, Waly" was known from the first quarter of the eighteenth century. This in his notes on "Jamie Douglas" (Child #204), where he points out the common ground between the former and several versions of the latter.

Bronson says that Allan Ramsay was the first to publish it in Tea-Table Miscellany, c. 1724.


While searching for something else in the Bodleian Library Broadside collection, I came across a broadside from 1813 which contains "Waly, Waly" and attributes it to Allan Ramsay in the "Tea-Table Miscellany"

the Bodleian catalogue details are as follows

Sheet Title:         The thistle
Printer:         Catnach, J. (London)
Date:         between 1813 and 1838
        Imprint: Printed by J. Catnach, 2, Monmouth-court, 7 Dials
Illus. Ballads on sheet: 17
        
Copies:         Johnson Ballads fol. 28

The Broadside may be found here

Not conclusive evidence, but indicative.


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide - one more time!
From: GUEST,TJ in San Diego
Date: 11 Feb 08 - 04:14 PM

I first learned this song circa 1958 and performed a version of it many times into the early 1960's. I wish I could still recall all of it, but here are two:

    "The water is wide,
      I cannot cross over,
      And neither have I wings to fly.
      Give me a boat,
      That can carry two,
      And both shall row,
      My love and I.

      I leaned my back,
      Up against a young oak,
      Thinking he was a trusty tree.
      But first he bent,
      And then he broke,
      Just as did my
      False love to me."

I'd be willing to bet that Deckman or one of his fellow northwesterners can provide more.


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide - one more time!
From: open mike
Date: 11 Feb 08 - 03:30 PM

or perhaps (as inspired by a recent boat thread)
the water is narrow....


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide - one more time!
From: GUEST,Tom Bliss
Date: 11 Feb 08 - 02:16 PM

I just did a search for them and no-one seems to have answered Murray's initial question from 1999 (apologies if I've missed it).

I'm fairly sure that the band who had the big hit with this song in the 60s was The Seekers - with Judith NOT taking the lead for once. I think that's Keith singing but I may be wrong.

here

And here is a version (eventually) with new lyrics by Anne Wooby relating to

The Napoli


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide - one more time!
From: GUEST,highlandman
Date: 11 Feb 08 - 02:00 PM

Church lyrics? Anything with an appropriately pensive mood that is listed as 8.8.8.8 in the hymnal index will fit. My wife and I sing "When I Survey The Wondrous Cross" to this tune, and it's always a grabber.
-G


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide - one more time!
From: Stringsinger
Date: 10 Feb 08 - 04:15 PM

What Pete didn't say about the song is that he developed his arrangement based on the
accompaniment that was done for John Charles Thomas, a populr classical baritone in the 20's and 30's.

This was the basis for my arrangement of the song which I taught to Karla Bonoff but
was actually recorded by James Taylor who might have done something else with it.
But Karla learned her arrangement from me and I learned it from Pete but changed it.

This is the folk process they keep talking about.

Frank Hamilton


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide - one more time!
From: GUEST,Dave
Date: 09 Feb 08 - 09:53 PM

The Church lyric for this tune is titled the Gift of Love, by Hal Hobson
Though I may speak with bravest fire,
And have the gift to all inspire,
And have not love, my words are vain,
As sounding brass, and hopeless gain.

Though I may give all I possess,
And striving so my love profess,
But not be given by love within,
The profit soon turns strangely thin.

Come, Spirit, come, our hearts control,
Our spirits long to be made whole.
Let inward love guide every deed;
By this we worship, and are freed.


I was looking for the Tune name. Is it Waly Waly?


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide - one more time!
From: frogprince
Date: 17 Feb 07 - 11:28 PM

Mary, if you find this of interest, you're welcome to use it. Just let me know if you do, and whereabouts you are, just 'cause I'd like to know :)
                         Dean


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide - one more time!
From: GUEST,Mary
Date: 17 Feb 07 - 07:16 PM

Does anyone have lyrics to the tune of Water is Wide that could be sung in church?


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide - one more time!
From: GUEST,Tunesmith
Date: 31 Oct 03 - 07:09 AM

This has, I'm sure, been mentioned before, but "The Water is Wide" was used as the main - and reoccuring theme - in a relatively recent movie " The River Wild" ( I think that's the correct title. Also, there is a nice - if different - version of the song by Linda Ronstadt on saxophonist David Sandborn's album " Love Songs".


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide - one more time!
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 06:14 PM

these are the lyrics (i sung the song in choir so i know the lyrics and the song is very good)


The water is wide
i can cross oer
and neither have
thuy wings to fly
give me a boat
that cn carry two
and both shall row
my love and i
there is a ship
and it sails the sea
its loaded deep
but not as deep
as in love and i
i care not if
i live or die
the water is wide
(oh shenandoah)
i cannot cross oer


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide - one more time!
From: George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca
Date: 07 Jan 03 - 11:20 AM

Malcolm, I spent all of Sunday afternoon going through ALL of the Mudcat's Water is Wide threads. It's been a complicated group of threads, since the same information is contained in most of them. Mostly thanks to yourself.

Malcolm, we don't say this often enough, but THANKS! From the bottom of my heart, many many thanks for the informed posts you provide us with to learn from. It's always great to see a new posting from yourself in a thread I am interested in.

Thanks Turtle Old Man for keeping this discussion going. Hope you get your answers as well. You seem to complement Malcolm's information well. Keep it up.


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide - one more time!
From: John Minear
Date: 07 Jan 03 - 08:43 AM

Malcolm,

   The Nick Reynolds/Ovid Young (Kingston Trio) version does indeed use the Somerset tune. This happens to be the version that I heard first, a long time ago, and the one that I learned. I had forgotten where it came from until recently. Not surprizingly, it flows a bit more smoothly than some of the other folk revival versions. I would say that it is still the tune that makes all of this unique. T.O.M.


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide - one more time!
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 06 Jan 03 - 10:47 PM

Probably mistook an L for an I or a 1. But use the search and it will come up.


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide - one more time!
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 06 Jan 03 - 10:46 PM

One or other of those fellows changed a few words, I guess; but I'll bet they stuck to the Somerset tune. For some really detailed discussion and analysis of the Water is Wide branch of this song-family, though, see Water Is Wide - First American Version


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide - one more time!
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 06 Jan 03 - 10:42 PM

Adding to George Seto's post:
The Kingston Trio repeated the first verse at the end of the song. Leo's Lyrics also credits Ovid Young for the graceful lyrics.

Lyr. Add: The River is Wide
Lyrics: Ovid Young

The river is wide, I cannot see
Nor do I have light wings to fly
There'll be a boat that can carry two
And both shall row, my love and I.

My love is like the lofty tree
It shudders fears and then sways free
If it should fade when the summer's through
She'll bloom again when spring shines through.

When love is young, then love is fine
Just like a gem when first it's new
But love grows old and waxes cold
And fades away like the morning dew.

The river is wide, I cannot see
Nor do I have light wings to fly
There'll be a boat that can carry two
And both shall row, my love and I.

www.leo's lyrics.com: River is Wide

Ovid Young is a pianist and organist, better known for religious themes. Haven't found a date for this song yet.


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide - one more time!
From: George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca
Date: 06 Jan 03 - 10:06 PM

Joe, in 1999, you say Nick Reynolds wrote The River is Wide, but I was looking for something else, and found this

http://www.fortunecity.com/tinpan/newbonham/6/riveriswide.htm


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide - one more time!
From: GUEST,crazy little woman
Date: 22 May 02 - 11:34 PM

Murray, if your friend is a Catholic, tell him the tune is used for "As the Deer Longs." He may know it.


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide - one more time!
From: GUEST,Van Lingle
Date: 22 May 02 - 06:42 PM

The late Fred Neil did a great version of it.


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 23 Jun 99 - 09:29 PM

There's a very pretty Scots version that Burl Ives sangm and was popular in the late 40s hat began "When cockle shells turn silver bells...:

One problem with folk recordings is that every version except the "righr one" tends to disappear.


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide - Waly, Waly
From: Joe Offer
Date: 23 Jun 99 - 02:58 PM

Ah, Milt Okun wrote the song, eh? Milt was musical director for Peter, Paul and Mary and other 60's folk acts. I wonder how many centuries-old songs he copyrighted. This one and quite a few others, I'd reckon.
Folk Music: An Index to Recorded Sources is up today, and has a long list of recordings of this song.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide
From: Piepskopf@aol.com
Date: 23 Jun 99 - 02:32 PM

The song "Oh Waly Waly" was published by Esther and Abi Ofarim on their album "Ofarim Konzert live 1969" Philips Records. They name a certain "M. Okun" as author. The album was published in Germany.


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide
From: murray@mpce.mq.edu.au
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 10:30 PM

Thanks for the replies. I remember a lot of good versions; but my rules of the game were that the performance would be one even a non-folkie would have heard. You have given me a good list.

Joe, thanks for that site, which I didn't know about. I was able to make contact with it, and have bookmarked it.

Roger, sometimes a telephone pole is Alexander Graham Belsky.

Murray


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide
From: John Hindsill
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 09:23 PM

I have nine versions of this song from an instrumental in old English manner by Charlie Byrd to Carolyn Hester to Buffy Sainte-Marie with great jaws harp intro and exit, but not the same song as I can detect, but you in the biz might get the similarities.

Also, the song probably will be on the CD of a local (LA-area) group called Five Wheel Drive who do a beautiful version in person. If they come to your town see them. FWD is country flavored, does a lot of original songs, and is fronted by three of the most gorgeous girl singers...being gorgeous doesn't make them good, but it couldn't hoit either.---John


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide
From:
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 07:30 PM

I put my finger to the bush,
thinking the sweetest Rose to find,
I prickt my finger to the bone,
and yet I left the rose behind
---by Martin Parker, The Distressed Virgin, 1629.


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide
From: Penny S.
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 05:54 PM

Ferrier was even earlier than that. And, I suppose, cross-over rather than folk.

Penny


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide
From: Joe Offer
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 05:42 PM

The song was recorded in the U.S. many times in the 1960's, but I don't recall hearing the "Waly Waly" verse until recently. I think maybe the verse wasn't considered 'marketable' in the '60's. Too foreign-sounding for the time, and it would have been mispronounced "Wally, Wally" in my home in the Midwest.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide
From: Penny S.
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 05:34 PM

I first heard this in a recording by Kathleen Ferrier, under the title "O Waly Waly", but without those words in it.

Penny


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide
From: Art Thieme
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 05:07 PM

And a telephone pole used to be a tree. An old tale from the N.W. section of California says that Paul Bunyan carved his own wife from a single Redwood Tree. And Paul died of a rare venereal disease---Terminal Slivers!!! When he fell, it was the FIRST California earthquake ever recorded.

Art


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide
From: katlaughing
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 04:52 PM

Parnell Roberts/Adam went on to sing opera...he's got a beautiful singing voice. Bet & I just sang "Early One Morning" at our debut gig. The first time either of us heard it was on Bonanza, when "Adam" sang it.

kat


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide
From: Legal Eagle
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 04:08 PM

Ian Bruce does a song with a line - and - a - half

"God bless my soul/I took that man for a telegraph pole".

It's about a very tall Scotsman.


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide
From: Night Owl
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 02:56 PM

Easy Rider...THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!! for posting the link to Mark Hanson's web site...great place and I found the tab for "Water Is Wide". Another great song that I'd forgotten about for sharing at work. Wondering if I'll ever be able to sing it again without thinking about "telephone poles"!!! (giggle)


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide
From: emily rain
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 02:36 PM

thanks for mentioning james taylor, who does the loveliest version of this song that i've ever heard. it's on his "new moon shine".


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide
From: Jeri
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 10:00 AM

EZR, it was Bonanza and the older bro's name was Adam, played by Parnell Roberts(sp?) who later did the "Trapper John" TV show. I didn't know he recorded, but he sure has a nice speaking voice.


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide
From: Roger in Baltimore
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 09:21 AM

Art,

You know what they say, "Sometimes a telephone pole is just a telephone pole."

Big RiB


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide
From: Art Thieme
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 09:05 AM

Burl Ives did "Waly Waly" throughout his career.

But what does this mean? Is this where THE BLUES' sly references and double entendres come from? ;-)

I thrust my hand into some sweet bush,
Thinking the sweetest flower to find,
But I pricked my finger all to the bone,
And I left the sweetest flower alone.

Art


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide
From: Easy Rider
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 08:47 AM

Didn't the older brother, from the Ponderosa TV family also record this song? What was his name, not Hoss, the handsome one? What was the name of the show, starring Lorn Green?

Mark hanson has a fingerstyle guitar arrangement of this song in his new book and on his Web site,

Mark Hanson

EZR


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Subject: Lyr Add: O WALY, WALY UP THE BANK
From: Alan of Australia
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 08:36 AM

G'day,
Professor Child, writing in 1890 (or earlier) says that "Waly, Waly" was known from the first quarter of the eighteenth century. This in his notes on "Jamie Douglas" (Child #204), where he points out the common ground between the former and several versions of the latter.

Bronson says that Allan Ramsay was the first to publish it in Tea-Table Miscellany, c. 1724.

O waly, waly up the bank!
And waly, waly, down the brae!
And waly, waly yon burn-side,
Where I and my love wont to gae!

I leand my back unto an aik,
I thought it was a trusty tree;
But first it bowd, and syne it brak,
Sae my true-love did lightly me.

etc.

Cheers,
Alan


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide
From: Folksie Lady
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 07:31 AM

Ok, Joan Baez did sing it. It's on her "Very Early Joan" album.

Pete Seeger discovered the song's charms many years after he began his singing career. It's on his recent album, "Pete." (and probably on others, too)


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE RIVER IS WIDE (Kingston Trio)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 07:28 AM

On their Make Way! album, the Kingston Trio say it was written by Nick Reynolds. They call it "The River Is Wide."

THE RIVER IS WIDE
Nick Reynolds

CHORUS: The river is wide. I cannot see.
Nor do I have light wings to fly.
Build me a boat that can carry two
And both shall row, my love and I.

My love is like the lofty tree.
It shudders fierce and then sways free.
If it should fade when the summer's through,
She'll bloom again when the spring shines through.

When love is young, then love is fine.
Just like a gem when first it's new.
But love grows old and waxes cold
And fades away like the morning dew. (Chorus)

HTML line breaks added. --JoeClone, 16-Jul-02.


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide
From: Folksie Lady
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 07:01 AM

This happens to be one of my favorite folksongs. I sang it in a high school chorale and never forgot it.

Does Karla Bonoff count? Or are we only searching for recordings by more "mainstream" artists? Karla has the loveliest version I've yet heard on her Restless Nights album. She's backed by none other than James Taylor.

Folksie


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Subject: RE: The Water is Wide
From: Joe Offer
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 06:44 AM

Well, Murray, Folk Music: An Index to Recorded Sources isn't working this morning, so we're a bit crippled. Seems to me that Baez must have recorded it under one name or another. Peter, Paul and Mary called it There Is a Ship on their "In Concert" album. I wonder how many others we can come up with. I'd bet there are lots.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: The Water is Wide
From: murray@mpce.mq.edu.au
Date: 22 Jun 99 - 06:33 AM

I was trying to convince a friend of mine who is not particularly into folk music that he does know the tune "Waly Waly" because it was a popular folk song in the 60s. I would like to say, "You know xxx sand it." where xxx is one of the 60s folk "biggies" (Joan Baez, Peter Paul and Mary, etc.) Does anyone know which of them sang it.

Thanks

Murray


Messages from multiple threads combined.
-Joe Offer-


Threads on this song:

(Not an all-inclusive list. Some say Carrickfergus is a version of this song.)


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