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Origins: Don't Forget Your Old Shipmate

JWB 20 Jan 10 - 09:58 PM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 21 Jan 10 - 05:27 AM
JWB 21 Jan 10 - 05:53 PM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 21 Jan 10 - 06:23 PM
Anglo 22 Jan 10 - 12:04 PM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 22 Jan 10 - 12:15 PM
JWB 22 Jan 10 - 12:22 PM
JWB 05 Feb 10 - 11:06 PM
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Subject: Origins: Don't Forget Your Old Shipmate
From: JWB
Date: 20 Jan 10 - 09:58 PM

I'm trying to track down the version of this song that appears in R.R.Terry's "Salt Sea Ballads", published by J.Curwen in 1931. Does anyone happen to have a copy? I want to know what the lyrics are, and if there is a chorus given, and of course, the melody (apparently this book includes piano arrangements of all the songs contained therein).

This is the same song that appears in the movie "Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World".

Thanks for your help,

Jerry


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Subject: RE: Origins: Don't Forget Your Old Shipmate
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 21 Jan 10 - 05:27 AM

Jerry - I haven't got the Terry version, but I have just put up the version from Firth in the old thread: Lyr Req: Don't forget yer old shipmate

Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: Don't Forget Your Old Shipmate
From: JWB
Date: 21 Jan 10 - 05:53 PM

Thanks, Mick. In that same old thread, don't you identify yourself as a backup singer on Jim Mageean's album "Of Ships...And Men"? What do you remember about learning the song?

I actually have a copy of Firth, and am wondering how to find out who RC Saunders was. Could he have been a sailor? Do you know of any way to check Royal Navy records for that name?

Much obliged,

Jerry


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Subject: RE: Origins: Don't Forget Your Old Shipmate
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 21 Jan 10 - 06:23 PM

Jerry - I was indeed a backup singer on the record, but I can't remember anything about learning the song. I remember I had a cold when it was recorded, but that's not very helpful.

I did a quick search for RC Saunders earlier today but didn't find anything obvious before giving up.

For records, you might have a look at: The National Archives, but it could be a long haul! (The other name of the person who sent it to him - Sir Someone-or-other - might also be worth checking to get some idea of a time frame)

Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: Don't Forget Your Old Shipmate
From: Anglo
Date: 22 Jan 10 - 12:04 PM

Here's the tune as it appears in Terry:

X:1
T:Don't forget your old shipmate
C: from Terry: Salt Sea Ballads
M:4/4
L:1/4
K:g
GGDD|EE D2 |GGAc|(B>A) G2|
GGDD|EE D2 |GGAc|(B>A) G2|
ddd B/c/|ddd2|edcB|B2 A2|
B>A GD|EGD2|d/>d/ d/>d/ d/>c/ B/>A/|(B>A) G2||


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Subject: RE: Origins: Don't Forget Your Old Shipmate
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 22 Jan 10 - 12:15 PM

Do you have Terry's lyrics (which is what JWB was after) then Anglo?

Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: Don't Forget Your Old Shipmate
From: JWB
Date: 22 Jan 10 - 12:22 PM

Anglo,

Many thanks! That is the familiar tune, as recorded by Jim Mageean, with a couple of slight differences.

Does Terry say anything about the origins of that melody, or his source for the song itself? There's clearly a chorus in Terry's version, but the lyric in Firth has only a refrain. So where did the melody and chorus come from?

Mick, I have looked around for info on Sir JK Laughton, whom Firth says "communicated" the song to him. Laughton was a professor of naval history at Kings College in the early years of the 20th century. Thanks for the link to the National Archives – I'll give it look.

Jerry


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Subject: RE: Origins: Don't Forget Your Old Shipmate
From: JWB
Date: 05 Feb 10 - 11:06 PM

I've obtained Terry's "Salt Sea Ballads" via inter-library loan, and have discovered that Terry learned the melody from his uncle, James Runciman. As usual with the folk process, the way Terry lays out the tune and lyrics is a bit different from what Jim Mageean recorded in 1978, using Terry as his source (as he asserts in an email to me).

I'm going to start another thread to learn if there's a discography of sea music that will confirm that Mageean's recording of the song was the first.

Let me know if you have information on who, besides Mageean, recorded this, and when.

Thanks,

Jerry


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