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Folklore: Who's on the way boys?

radriano 30 Sep 09 - 01:45 PM
radriano 30 Sep 09 - 04:50 PM
radriano 01 Oct 09 - 06:28 PM
Padre 01 Oct 09 - 10:08 PM
radriano 05 Oct 09 - 04:17 PM
GUEST,Mike Yates 06 Oct 09 - 03:05 AM
radriano 07 Oct 09 - 11:55 AM
Barry Finn 07 Oct 09 - 12:33 PM
radriano 07 Oct 09 - 04:23 PM
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Subject: Folklore: Who's on the way boys?
From: radriano
Date: 30 Sep 09 - 01:45 PM

The chorus lines of the sea shanty The Ward Line are:

"Who's on the way boys, who's on the way?" and "Tell me where you goin'?"

The Windjammers: Songs of the Great Lakes Sailors book states that the chorus of "The Ward Line" refers to the stevedores not really getting anywhere on their wages.

I've recenty heard that these lines may refer to questions asked of ships coming by, in terms of what the ship's name is and its destination - in case of shipwrecks.

Any one else heard of this?

Radriano


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Who's on the way boys?
From: radriano
Date: 30 Sep 09 - 04:50 PM

refresh please


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Who's on the way boys?
From: radriano
Date: 01 Oct 09 - 06:28 PM

refresh please


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Who's on the way boys?
From: Padre
Date: 01 Oct 09 - 10:08 PM

There are references in some of the verses to various ships of the Ward Line (The Moran and the John H. Nichols) being 'bound up' or 'bound down' - this would indicate which way the ships were sailing on the Great Lakes (from Buffalo in the East to Lake Lake Superior further West


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Who's on the way boys?
From: radriano
Date: 05 Oct 09 - 04:17 PM

Thank you, Padre.

I'm aware of those verses. It's just that I heard a performer doing "The Ward Line" and his introduction of the song gave a different interpretation to the chorus lines.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Who's on the way boys?
From: GUEST,Mike Yates
Date: 06 Oct 09 - 03:05 AM

I recorded a song from the Appalachian singer Dan Tate which had the chorus:

Who's on the way?
Who's on the way?
Who's on the way?
I wish I had a dram.

I don't know if there is any connection here to the "Ward Line" song, but you can hear Dan singing this on the Musical Traditions double CD "Far in the Mountains" volumes 1 & 2 (MTCD 321-2).


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Who's on the way boys?
From: radriano
Date: 07 Oct 09 - 11:55 AM

Thanks Mike.

I appreciated your response but it really has nothing to do with the question I asked.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Who's on the way boys?
From: Barry Finn
Date: 07 Oct 09 - 12:33 PM

Hi Richard
It seems as if what you heard is just speculation unless they have another source that they can point to other than collector Ivan Walton or his source, Captain Harvey Kendall.
Lee Murdock also does this & did some searching & found references in the Bentley Historical Library in Ann Arbor Michigan but adds no more that what's already been posted here & in the other Ward Line thread

Here a link (I hope) The Ward Line as it appears in "Windjammers: songs of the Great Lakes sailors" By Ivan Walton which gives some more info but none of which backs up what you heard.

We (Finn & Haddie) just started singing back up to this too with our new addition to the trio Ken Schatz who does the lead. Seeing as I believe he got it from the Boarding Party too, I'd say his info would be as Padre says.

Nice to hear from you Richard

Barry


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Who's on the way boys?
From: radriano
Date: 07 Oct 09 - 04:23 PM

Hey Barry!

Nice to hear from you.

Yeah, I would say at this point that what I heard was just speculation but I'm surprised that someone would introduce a song in a concert that includes info that's just speculation - it sounded like the performer knew what he was talking about. I need to talk to the guy myself.

I have the Windjammers book so I know what it says there. Someone in the Boarding Party must have had access to more source information because some of their songs have verses not in the book, unless, of course, some improvisation was going on during recordings. I'll go through the links you and others have provided and see if I've missed anything.

You doing okay, Barry?

Richard


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