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The Advent and Development of Chanties

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Gibb Sahib 12 Jul 11 - 02:50 AM
Gibb Sahib 12 Jul 11 - 02:52 AM
Gibb Sahib 12 Jul 11 - 02:53 AM
John Minear 12 Jul 11 - 08:47 AM
John Minear 12 Jul 11 - 08:54 AM
GUEST,Lighter 12 Jul 11 - 04:41 PM
Gibb Sahib 12 Jul 11 - 05:02 PM
Gibb Sahib 12 Jul 11 - 08:00 PM
Gibb Sahib 13 Jul 11 - 07:42 PM
Gibb Sahib 15 Jul 11 - 10:23 PM
Gibb Sahib 15 Jul 11 - 10:26 PM
Charley Noble 16 Jul 11 - 09:39 AM
GUEST,Lighter 16 Jul 11 - 10:44 AM
Gibb Sahib 16 Jul 11 - 03:55 PM
GUEST,Lighter 16 Jul 11 - 04:05 PM
Gibb Sahib 16 Jul 11 - 05:13 PM
Charley Noble 16 Jul 11 - 10:13 PM
Gibb Sahib 27 Jul 11 - 11:52 PM
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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 12 Jul 11 - 02:50 AM

1914        Bullen, Frank. T. and W.F. Arnold. _Songs of Sea Labour._ London: Orpheus Music Publishing.

Bullen, born c.1858, first went to sea in 1869 at age 11.

Bullen's collection is a unique and detailed repository of chanties as learned by a "hardcore" chantyman of the 1870s, without the prejudice of Captain Whall's earlier selections. Bullen's singing was transcribed by Arnold, an academically trained musician.

While Sharp read and acknowledge the work, it does not seem to have had much/any influence on later performers (/the Revival) until Hugill re-printed some of the items. Bullen was known for a couple books earlier. I wonder what happened with this one. Was it poorly distributed? Did it not carry much clout for some reason?

Intro, dated 1913. Critiques predecessors for not having experience.
//
But I, unwillingly enough, had to spend over a decade of my sea life in various sailing ships' forecastles, engaged in trades where Chanties were not only much used on board, but where many new ones were acquired in the harbours; I allude to the West Indies and the Southern States of America.

Being possessed of a strong and melodious voice and a tenacious memory, Chanty singing early became a passion with me, and this resulted in my being invariably made Chantyman of each new vessel I sailed in, a function I performed until I finally reached the quarter-deck, when of course it ceased…I was before the mast in sailing ships from 1869 to 1880…I was never apprenticed and consequently was a member of many different ships' companies and sailed in many varying trades in that time.
//

The nature of chanty lyrics: Impromptu, dirty.
//
The stubborn fact is that they had no set words beyond a starting verse or two and the fixed phrases of the chorus, which were very often not words at all. For all Chanties were impromptu as far as the words were concerned. Many a Chantyman was prized in spite of his poor voice because of his improvisations. Poor doggerel they were mostly and often very lewd and filthy, but they gave the knowing and appreciative shipmates, who roared the refrain, much opportunity for laughter… And although many a furtive smile will creep over old sailors' faces, when they hear these Chanties and remember the associated words that went with them, those words are not down here.
//

Notes on "The Music of the Chanties," by Arnold, 1913.
//
Seeing that the majority of the Chanties are Negroid in origin, perhaps a few remarks on Negro music will not be out of place here…
//

Musicological talk follows. About pentatonic scale. Comparison with example from "Slave Songs of the United States." "Snap" rhythm. Ending melodies on other tones than the tonic. "Rag-time" vs. "raggy" nature of chanty tunes. Comparison to Sankey hymns (and also quoting Jekyll's work on Jamaican music).
//
Many of the Chanty tunes bear a strong resemblance to hymn tunes of the Sankey and Moody type. …after the War of Emancipation troupes of negro singers toured the Northern States of America, introducing the traditional slave tunes to all classes of the community, including the negroes of the North, who adapted some of the songs into their religious services. …negro songs and singers became "the rage." …many of the traditional tunes already used as hymns by the negroes, and others because of their quasi religious flavour, were adapted to words of a devotional nature. Mr. Bullen himself told the writer that on one occasion he overheard a South Carolina negro, employed on a sperm whaling ship as harpooner, crooning what was ostensibly a Sankey hymn, but, on being questioned, the singer submitted the information that he had never heard of either Sankey or Moody, and what he was singing was a South Carolina slave song, "The little Octoroon"… Mr. Bullen however, knew the tune as "Ring the bells of heaven" one of the best known of the Sankey collection. …There is not the slightest doubt that many of the hymns in that famous collection had their origin in the old traditional negro tunes…The tunes of both the Chanties and the American Revival Hymns spring from one common source—negro music.
//

"Note to the Chanties"
//
It is a wild thought of mine I know, but I have imagined the improvising of words to these Chanties becoming a favourite country house Drawing Room diversion…
//

Chanties not sung off duty.
//
Unlike the old folk-songs, which are used for pleasure or diversion, the Sailor's Chanties were never sung in the forecastles after labour, nor in all my experience have I ever heard a song sung in a ship's forecastle that would be recognized as a sailor's song.
//

//
…But the great majority of these tunes undoubtably emanated from the negroes of the Antilles and the Southern states, a most tuneful race if ever there was one, men moreover who seemed unable to pick up a ropeyarn without a song… I have never seen any men work harder or more gaily than negroes when they were allowed to sing….
//

[[WINDLASS AND CAPSTAN CHANTIES]]

[MUDDER DINAH] Sharp also gave this (from informant Conway), and we know it as a rowing song from South Carolina.
//
…when I first heard the Chanty which I have called "Mudder Dinah!"…We were discharging general cargo in the Demerara River off Georgetown, and all the wonder I could spare, being a first voyage laddie, was given to the amazing negroes who, not content with flinging their bodies about as they hove at the winch, sang as if their lives depended upon maintaining the volume of sound at the same time… I became most anxious to learn it, so I asked one of our two boat-boys to teach me…HE set about his pleasnt task at once but was very soon pulled up by his mate who demanded in indignant tones what he meant by teaching "dat buckra chile" dem rude words. They nearly had a fight over it and then I learned that the words didn't matter, that you varied them according to taste, but as taste was generally low and broad the words were usually what my negro friend called, in cheerful euphemism, rude.

1. Mudder Dinah.

Good mornin' Mudder Dinah, how does yer shabe yer peepul?
Sing! Sally oh! Right fol de ray!
Hooray-ay-ay-ay-ay-ay-ay, For ole mudder di-inah-h
Sing Sally oh. Right fol der ray.
//

//
In this way [i.e. from stevedores in Demerara on his first voyage] I acquired numbers 1, 2, 3, and 4 in this collection and I have never heard them anywhere else. They are negro Chanties all right enough, but they were not in common use on board ship.
//

[SISTER SUSAN] Harlow also gave this as a stevedore's song.
//
2. Sister Seusan.

Sister Seusan my aunt Sal
Gwineter git a home bime-by-high!
All gwineter lib down Shinbone Al,
Gwineter git a home bime-by.
Gwineter git a home bime-by-e-high
Gwineter git a home bime-by.
//

//
3. Ten Stone.

I nebber seen de like sence I ben bawn!
Way ay ay ay ay!
Nigger on de ice an a hoe-in up corn
Way ay ay ay ay
Ten stone! Ten stone, ten stone de win' am ober!
Jenny git along Jenny blow de horn,
As we go marchin' ober!
//

A "Shenandoah" lyrical theme, however, the form/tune here is unique. This is probably related to the now-popular "Down Trinidad/Sunnydore" song, and perhaps to "Shiny O".
My rendition: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1be-0VjCtxE
//
4. Shenandoah

Oh Shenandoh my bully boy I long to hear you holler;
Way ay ay ay ay Shenandoh
I lub ter bring er tot er rum en see ye make a swoller;
Way ay ay ay Shenandoh!
//

[SALLY BROWN] Bullen notes with this (and later with "Drunken Sailor") having heard it sung for enjoyment by gentlemen of London's Savage Club. Am I to suppose that many of the Club's members would have included retired seamen (does anymone know more about it)? I guess the question for me would be what period he is talking about and what that would imply. To wit, was this after the era (first decade of 20th c.) when chanties had spread to the general public – in which case these two songs were, in a way, pop songs? Or, was it at an earlier time, such that the singers had all really remember the songs from their working experience?
//
…But my most pleasant memory of it is not when weighing the anchor or working the flywheel pumps, but on sundry Saturday nights at the Savage Club, when the delighted Savages did their best to lift the roof off the great Clubroom at Adelphi Terrace, and the mighty volume of sound must have been heard on the farther bank of the Thames….

5. Sally Brown.

Sally Brown she's a bright Mulatto
Way ay –ay roll and go!
She drinks rum and chews terbacker;
Spend my money on Sally Brown.
//

First appearance of this, though we've had WALKALONG SALLY. Tune resembles "Tom's Gone to Hilo" a bit.
//
…typically negro and no white man could hope to reproduce the extraordinary effects imparted to it by a crowd of enthusiastic black men.

6. Walk Along Rosey.

Rosy here an Ro-o-sy dere,
A way you Rosy walk along
Oh Rosy here, an Rosy dere!
Walk along my Rosy!
//

[GOODBYE FARE YOU WELL]
//
…an old, old favourite with the white sailor, but it is full of melancholy…probably more frequently sung than any other Chanty when getting under weigh either outward or homeward bound.

7. Good-bye, Fare-you-well.

I thought I heard our old man say
Good bye fare you well , good bye fare you well
I thought I heard our old man say
Hurah my boys we're ho-omeward bound!
//

[MR. STORMALONG]
//
8. Storm-along.

Stormy he was a good old man.
To my way, You Stormalong!
Oh Stormy he is dead and gone!
Ay! Ay! Ay! Mister Stormalong.
//

[LEAVE HER JOHNNY]
//
To sing it before the last day or so on board was almost tantamount to mutiny, and was apt even at the latest date to be fiercely resented by Captain and Officers.

9. Leave her Johnny.

Leave her Johnny and we'll work no-o more
Leave her Johnny, leave her!
Of pump or drown we've had full store;
Its time for us to leave her.
//

[JOHNNY COME DOWN TO HILO] was supposedly last heard off Calcutta by Bullen – in the 1870s, I suppose. Interesting in the lyrics here is the "[A]merican man." Bullen gives the lyrics in a Black [eye-]dialect, and in that context I'm not sure just what was meant by "American." Is the singing subject supposed to be a Black man of the Caribbean, or….?
//
…brings to my mind most vividly a dewy morning in Garden Reach where we lay just off the King of Oudh's palace awaiting our permit to moor. I was before the mast in one of Bates' ships, the "Herat," and when the order came at dawn to man the windlass I raised this Chanty and my shipmates sang the chorus as I never heard it sung before or since…I have never heard that noble Chanty sung since…

10. Johnny Come Down to Hilo.

I nebber seen de like, Since I ben born
When a 'Merican man wid de sea boots on
Says Johnny come down to Hilo.
Poor old man!
Oh! wake her! Oh! Shake her
Oh wake dat gal wid der blue dress on,
When Johnny comes down to Hilo!
Poor old man!
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 12 Jul 11 - 02:52 AM

Bullen 1914, cont.

[SHENANDOAH] (usual style)
//
…ordinary windlass or pump type…

Shanandoh, I long ter hear ye;
A way, you rolling river;
Oh Shanandoh I can't get near ye
Ha ha! I'm bound away on the wide Missouri!
//

[A-ROVING]
//
…sounds suspiciously like some old English melody that has been pressed into sea service as a chanty…

12. A-Roving.

In Amsterdam there lived a maid and she was tall and fair,
her eyes were blue, her cheeks were red and she had auburn hair
but I'll go no more a ro-oving with you fair maid.
A roving, a roving since rovings' been my ru-i-n
I'll go no more a ro-oving with you fair maid.
//

[LOWLANDS AWAY]
//
13. Lowlands Away.

Lowlands away I heard them say
Lowlands, lowlands away my John
Lowlands away I heard them say,
My dollar an' a half a day.
//

[RIO GRANDE]
//
14. Rio Grande.

Oh Captain, oh Ca-apten heave yer ship to;
Oh! you Rio
For I have got letters to send home by you.
And I'm bound to Rio
Grande
And away to Rio Oh to Rio
sing fa-are you well my bonny young gal,
For I'm bound to Rio grande.
//


The tune of the following is rendered here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aDb1oGugh2E
//
…so mournful that one suspects it of being the lament of some just sold slaves sent from one State to another without reference to any human ties they may have possessed. This Chanty was very seldom used except where negroes formed a considerable portion of the crew…

15. Poor Lucy Anna.

Oh the mountens so high an de ribbers so wide
Poor Lucy Anna
De mountens so high an' de ribbers so wide
Ise just gwine ober de mounten!
//

[SANTIANA]
//
…I first made its acquaintance in Sant Ana itself, a lawless mahogany port in the Gulf of Mexico.

16. Santy Anna.

Santy Anna's gone away
Hurrah! Santy Anna!
Santy Anna's go-one a way
Across the plains of Mexico.
//

[DRUNKEN SAILOR] Interesting seeing eye-dialect here ("de mawnin'").
//
…I gladly confess that my most pleasnt recollections of it are connected with the Savage Club where its fine chorus used to be uplifted strenuously by the full force of the brother Savages assembled.

17. What Shall We Do with a Drunken Sailor.

What shall we do with a drunken sailor,
what shall we do with a drunken sailor,
what shall we do with a drunken sailor,
Early in de mawnin'
Hooray an up she rises,
hooray an up she rises,
hooray an up she rises,
Early in de mawnin'.
//

[PADDY ON THE RAILWAY] Bullen says he didn't like this one, and never sang it as chantyman.
//
18. Poor Paddy.

In eighteen hundred an sixty one I thought I'd do a li-itle run,
I thought I'd do-oo a li'itle run
an' work up on a railway a railway
I'm weary on a railway
Oh! Poor Paddy works on the railway.
//

[HUCKLEBERRY HUNTING]
//
Oh! what did you give fer yer fine leg o' mutton
To me way ay ay you Ranzo way
Oh-h what did yer give fer yer fine leg o' mutton,
to me Hilo: me Ranzo way.
//

[HOGEYE]
//
20. Hog-eye Man.

Oh! de hog-eye man is de man for me,
He wuk all day on de big levee
Oh! Hog-eye Pig-eye!
Row de boat a shore fer de hog-eye O!
an all she wants is de hog eye man.
//

[NEW YORK GIRLS]
//
21. Can't You Dance the Polka.

My fancy man is a loafer, he loafs along de shore!
Git up you lazy sailor man an lay down on de floor!
Away! You santy my dear man
Oh you New York gals, cant ye dance the polka
//

[SACRAMENTO] Tune is closer to "Camptown Ladies" than to the "traditional" Sacramento.
//
22. The Banks of the Sacramento.

New York City is on fire
With a hoodah an a doodah!
New York City is on fire
hoodah doodah day.
Blow boys blow for Californyo
There's plenty of gold, so I've been told,
on the banks of the Sacramento.
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 12 Jul 11 - 02:53 AM

[[HALLIARD CHANTIES]]

[TOMMY'S GONE]
//
23. Toms Gone to Hilo.

Tommy's gone an' I'll go too
Away, to Hilo O
O Tommy's gone to Liverpool
Tom's gone to Hilo.
//

[HANGING JOHNNY]
//
24. Hanging Johnny.

Oh they call me hangin Johnny
Away ay ay ay
Because I hang fer money
Oh hang, boys, hang!
//

[ONE MORE DAY]
//
25. One More Day.

Only one more day my Johnny,
One more day
To rock an' roll me over,
One more day.
//

[ROLL THE COTTON DOWN]
//
26. Bound to Alabama.

Oh I'm bound to Alabama
Ter rollthe cotton dow-own
I'm boun ter Alabama ter roll the cotton down.
//

[YANKEE JOHN STORMALONG]
//
27. Liza Lee

Oh you Lize-er Lee
Yankee John Stormalong
Lize-er Lee is de gal fer me
Yankee John Stormalong
//

[REUBEN RANZO]
//
28. Reuben Ranzo.

Poor old Reuben Ranzo
Ranzo boys Ranzo!
Poor old Reu-uben Ranzo
Ranzo boys Ranzo.
//

[DEAD HORSE]
//
29. Poor Old Man. (Dead Horse.)

Poor old man your horse will die
an' they say so, an' they hope so
Poor old man your horse will die,
Oh poor old man!
//

//
…I learned it from a Spaniard, a stevedore engaged in stowing a cargo of mahogany which I shipped when I was mate of a pretty little barquentine in Tonala, Mexico. They, the stevedores, used many Chanties hauling the big logs about the hold, but this was a new one to me and hearing it so often I absorbed it, feeling that it was a very good one.

30. Hilo Come Down Below.

Said the black bird to the crow
Hilo, come down below
Come down below wid de whole yer crew,
Hilo come down below
//

[BONEY]
//
31. Boney Was a Warrior. (John François.)

Boney was a warrior
Way ay yah!
Boney was a warrior
John France-wah!
//

[BLOW THE MAN DOWN]
//
32. Blow the Man Down.
Oh blow the man down bullies blow him away
Way ay! Blow the man down
Oh blow the man down bullies blow him away
Gimme some time to blow the man down.
//

[COAL BLACK ROSE]
//
33. Coal Black Rose.

[cho.] Oh my Rosy Coal black Rose
Don't you hear de banjo Pinka a pong a-pong
[cho.] Oh my Rosy Coal black Rose.
//

[WHISKEY JOHNNY]
//
34. Whiskey Johnny.

Oh Whisky is the life of man,
Whisky Johny
oh Whisky is the life of man,
oh Whisky for my Johnny.
//

[BLOW BOYS BLOW]
//
35. Blow Boys Blow.

A Yankee ship came down de ribber,
Blow boys blow
A Yankee ship came down de ribber
Blow my bully boys blow!
//

[RUN LET THE BULGINE RUN]
//
36. The Bullgine.

Oh she's lovely up alo-oft an' she's lovely down below
Oh run let de Bullgine run
Way ya a Ah-o-oh
oh-oh run let de Bullgine run.
//

[[FORE SHEET CHANTIES]]

[BOWLINE]
//
37. Haul the Bowlin'.

Haul the Bowline, the skipper he's a growlin
[cho.] Haul the Bowline, the Bowline haul! (_shout_)
//

[JOHNNY BOWKER]
//
38. Do My Johnny Bowker.

Do my Johnny Bowker, come rock and roll me o-over,
[cho.] Do my Johnny Bowker do.
//

[HAUL AWAY JOE]
//
39. Haul Away Jo.

Way haul away For Kitty she's me da-arlin.
[cho.] Way haul away haul away Joe!
//

[[BUNT CHANTY}}

[PADDY DOYLE]
//
40. Paddy Doyle's Boots.

Ay way ay yah
We'll pay Paddy Doyle for his boots.
//

Then, sea songs, "41. Farewell and Adieu to You Spanish Ladies" (minor mode melody) and "42. Lowlands Low" [GOLDEN VANITY].


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: John Minear
Date: 12 Jul 11 - 08:47 AM

Gibb, thanks for the Bullen materials. I've read all of this before but it's always amazing what one misses! I find this statement intriguing:

"The tunes of both the Chanties and the American Revival Hymns spring from one common source—negro music."

Is it possible that we have parallel developments going on with "chanties" and "spirituals" both evolving from the plantation slave work songs? The call-response pattern, before the "spirituals" were polished up, is common to all three genres. And of course we could add the fourth group which would be modern chain gang songs. What continues to be striking here is that "chanties" come from the same source as "spirituals" and "chain gang songs".

Having a common source in things like corn-shucking songs would partially explain why chanties didn't "come from" spirituals. It still puzzles me though that there was not more crossover between spirituals and chanties. Maybe the "sacred/profane" boundary was strict on board ship.

I'm wondering if Sharp wasn't more likely referring to "English" hymnody than to the spiritual tradition. He showed a marked lack of interest in "Black music" on his Southern Appalachian tours.


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: John Minear
Date: 12 Jul 11 - 08:54 AM

These are too good, and interesting to miss: "Shenandoah" & "Poor Lucy Anna"


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1be-0VjCtxE


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aDb1oGugh2E


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 12 Jul 11 - 04:41 PM

Gibb, nice work! I don't think any of Bullen's shanties (except "Ten Stone"?) have ever been recorded.

His "Shenandoah" really is hardly more than a chant, but with a whole crew behind it it must have sounded "wild"...in the 19th Century Romantic sense.


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 12 Jul 11 - 05:02 PM

1915        Terry, Richard Runciman. "Sea Songs and Shanties."_ Journal of the Royal Music Association_ 11(41): 135-140.

On May 18, 1915, R.R. Terry (1865-1938) addressed members of the [Royal] Musical Association. Terry, an expert in liturgical music and the organ, was presumably in the midst of his project of collecting chanties. Here he uses a bit of his clout as a descendant of sea-farers to gain some leverage among his colleaugues. This is a transcript or summary of his address, from the proceedings of the meeting, followed by points from the discussion.

Terry is jumping into the fray after the 1914 showdown between Bullen and Sharp.
//
There is a great deal of literature on the subject, but the lecturer has been long familiar with Shanties from hearing his own sailor relatives sing them. There is this to be said about sailors' Shanties: there are so many variants of all the tunes that there is plenty of material for a lecture without having recourse to compiling from existing literature.
//
So, he proposes to make is own musicological contribution.

On spelling:
//
As regards the spelling of the word" Shanties," every person
who has had any connection with the Sea knows that the word
is pronounced in that way; there is no reason therefore why the
spelling should not correspond.
//

//
A Shanty was not sung by way of recreation, but was used to
lighten labour. …They flourished with the sailing ship and the coming of steam has killed them. Their origin so far as the composers are concerned is not known. In those unsophisticated days some sailor on
board ship more musical than the others probably collated the
tunes he knew, and the result was the Shanty. It had been
asserted that most of them were of negro origin, and that they
suggest ragtime. But there is nothing less suggestive of ragtime
than the Shanty; it has a clean, definite, rhythm which would
help the men at their work.
//
This is a response to Bullen.

He continues,
//
The negro in the West Indies is not the American negro. It is the latter that sings ragtime, and not so much he as the people who caricature him. The negro of the more primitive type is a person with a keen sense of persistent rhythm. In the West Indies one can hear Shanties to this day.
Here, perhaps, if one wants to get it, can be found the derivation
of the word Shanty, for the negro huts are called by this name. When a negro quarrels with his neighbour, and the relations between them are too strained for them to live any longer together, then one arranges to have his shanty moved. They are moved on trolleys, which are pulled by men at the end of ropes stretching down the road; and as they pull, the shantyman sits on top of the roof astride and sings the solo part of
some "pull and haul" Shanty. If the word is derived by some
from the French verb chanter, possibly this West Indian custom
is also a plausible explanation.
//
This may be the start of the "hut" theory? I'm not sure; I've tended to gloss over that in readings. What I find more interesting is the way he negotiates Bullen and Sharp. To essentialize their positions (!): Bullen says "Chanties are mainly Negro origin…I know through lived experience", Sharp says, "No, not really…I doubt it based on my musicological analysis." And Terry says, "OK, Negro, but *Caribbean*…this explains the musical inconsistencies." Personally, I think they are mixing up dance song and work song, which share some features (being a product of the same culture's musical system), but which shouldn't be compared so closely.

Seems to be rehashing Bullen, on the nature of shanty lyrics:
//
As regards the words, there are a few stereotyped verses at
the beginning and then the shanty-man used to invent the rest
which had to do with shipping, politics, personal characteristics.
the food, &c., all of which came in for a share of sarcasm
according to his extemporising capacity. Napoleon was a
favourite subject of the men, and so was a certain mythical
person called Starmy. [sic] The average sailor Shanty after the first
verse or so was simply unprintable, and that is especially so with
"The Hog's Eye Man," one of the most beautiful of the lot.
On an East Indiaman it was a great event for the passenger to
come and listen to the sailors' Shanties, and this particular one
was a great favourite on nearing port, but the singing of it was
absolutely forbidden except when the Captain could be assured
that a printable version would be used.
//

Taking a jab at Sharp's ilk here—interesting for someone familiar with modes from Latin liturgical music (his expertise):
//
One hears a great deal about modal evidence in Shanties.
The mistake of most Shanty books is that modal melodies are
often treated as if they were in keys, while on the other hand
there are a great many which are really either major or minor,
but are called modal. Modes seem to have a fascination for the
folk-song hunter; he finds Mode in everything; but a tune may
fulfil the conditions of Modal melody and yet not be in a Mode.
//

Minstrel sources recognized.
//
There are several types of Shanty which are without doubt
taken from published songs, some of them sung by the original
Christy Minstrels. Many a Christy Minstrel melody was adopted
on board ship, for anything could be made into a Shanty.
//

A plug for his forthcoming book?:
//
The ideal collection has yet to come. The sailor must combine
with the musician, and there must be a distinction between
tunes in Modes and in keys, but all is lost labour unless there is
real sympathy with and a certain practical knowledge of the
[li]fe at sea.
//

Following this, a choir performed some examples, then, discussion.

//
THE CHAIRMAN: It is quite clear that Dr. Terry is steeped in
Shantyism! …However, Dr. Terry did not go to sea [and thus didn't perish], and so we have been able to enjoy the benefit of his research and of his accumulated knowledge concerning shanties. As to his philological
remarks about the spelling of the word, I would seriously advise
him not to set foot in the class-rooms of Oxford University, and
utter such fearful heresy about "shanty." More than a dozen
professors would rise and ask if he had ever been to school, and
if so whether he had forgotten the Latin verb cano, which surely
must be the original root of words standing for singing and
chanting. We must not have a philological discussion, but I
cannot agree as to his spelling of "shanties," it hurts one's eyes
terribly. The suggestion has been made that it has connection
with the shanty or hut of the negroes, which is very ingenious and
clever. And there are shanties in Ireland, funny little places
where you get something stronger to drink than water. Well, the
imbibing of such potations leads to a certain amount of singing,
therefore it might be said that the word "shanties" comes from
these places where you get whisky! …
//
So, the "ch" spelling had been fairly well entrnched up to this point (e.g. in Englishmen Sharp and Bullen, though not in Whall), and what now seems to be the Commonwealth spelling preference of "sh" did not form until later.

Feedback from the Chairman on the lyrical nature:
//
…The words may seem foolish and silly if looked at coldly, but I
remember a time when in singing certain songs they did not think
so much of the words as of the music; to make out the rhythm
and accent and carryon the measure to the end they used to
insert all sorts of words. So with the sailors, they had to finish
their measure, and if necessary improvise words, there is nothing
very remarkable in that. As to some of the lines being
unprintable, I have in my collection Campion's Songs, written for
the lute, bass viol, and voice. He was a musician in the time of
Queen Elizabeth, and wrote some beautiful hymns and poetry, but
some of the songs are unprintable, though they stood for the feeling
of the day. Sailors in singing their shanties were not supposed
to have listeners, and they just said anything that came into their
head; one cannot blame them for that.
//

//
Mr. J. H. MAUNDER: Dr. Terry referred to the Christy
Minstrels in connection with shanties. Does he know if some of
the Christy Minstrels' songs were taken from shanties or vice versa,
and could he give us an idea of the time the Christy Minstrels
started? I remember hearing as a boy that the Moore and
Burgess troupe was developed from the Christy Minstrels.
//
JOHN, GRAHAM: …I have heard lectures on shanties on several
occasions, but I have not come across anyone with such a grip
of his subject as Dr. Terry has shown, nor with his enthusiasm.
I think the plan adopted this afternoon is peculiarly interesting. I
do not think it has been done before--that of giving a number
of shanties in a set. It seems to me there is a great chance of
shanties being sung by men's choirs and so on in this form.
Whereas one shanty might be put aside as being insignificant,
when we have a kind of fantasia of them in this way they become
exhilarating. I have enjoyed the singing; there has been a real
hit of British style about it: and in the coming years probably
we shall cultivate more and more of the rollicking, true John
Bull kind of song and tune.
//

//
Dr. TERRY: I am pleased to find that my -few n:marks have
been well received; but I am disappointed that I have not had
the man-handling I expected on several debatable points raised
with the express purpose of provoking discussion. I was not
unmindful of the derivation given by the Oxford Dictionary. My
suggestion has been spoken of as clever and ingenious. leaving it
to be inferred that like most clever, ingenious things, it is
worthless because too clever by half. But I would point out that
the British tar seems to have derived hardly any words from a
foreign tongue. An important reason why we should spell the
word as shanty, is that we want future generations to pronounce
the word as the sailors did; even our Chairman once or twice
pronounced it "shanty." [Does he mean "tchanty"?] As to the derivation of the word given in the Oxford Dictionary, some quite good authorities dissent from it.

I have been paid too great a compliment in having it thought
that I have dived deeply into an out-of-the-way subject. Had I
not come of a sailor family, or had I been living in London all
my life, it would have taken a considerable amount of time to
collect the material. As it was, it has been no trouble: I could
not help it, I have grown up with it: therefore I cannot claim
the credit of having spent long laborious nights wasting the
midnight oil collating information; one could not help imbibing
these things as a youngster. In regard to what has been said about
words being unprintable, I remember once being asked by a
Musical Club to give them something that had not been in print,
something old that had not been printed in England before.
Well, I arranged a quartet, and we sang it in public-myself,
a professional singer, a minor Canon, and another clergyman,
I think-something in medireval Italian which we pronounced as
modern Italian. You can imagine how startled and shocked we
were to find later what we had really been saying! Luckily no
scholar of medireval I talian happened to be present, so it was
never found out. As to the question raised about the Christy
Minstrels, .I went into that point, and showed that some shanties
were derived from Christy Minstrels and vice versa. I ought to
know the date when Christy Minstrels began, but I do not. But
Mr. Britten, whom I see here, is an authority on all these matters.
I am sorry Mr. Britten has not spoken, for it would have been an
enlivening and intellectual exercise.
Mr. BRITTEN: The date was about 1858.
Dr. TERRY: If Mr. Britten says 1858 or thereabouts you may
take it that he is right.
//
Britten was wrong! :-)


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 12 Jul 11 - 08:00 PM

1920        Terry, R.R. "Sailor Shanties (I)." _Music and Letters_ 1(1):35-44.

This would be Terry's first published work on shanties, the first of 2 articles which would later become his book collection.

After some generic/stereotypical comments, Terry takes note of the literature on chanties that had grown since their demise in practice.
//
When the sailing ship ruled the waters and the shanty was a
living thing, no one appears to have paid heed to it. To the
landsman of those days—before folk-song hunting had begun—the
haunting beauty of the tunes would appear to have made no appeal.
This may be partly accounted for by the fact that he would never
be likely to hear the sailor sing them ashore, and partly because of
the Rabelaisian character of the words to which they were sung
aboard ship. We had very prim notions of propriety in those
days, and were apt to overlook the beauty of the melodies, and to
speak of shanties in bulk as "low vulgar songs." Be that as it
may, it was not until the early 'eighties—when the shanty was
beginning to die out with the sailing ship—that any attempt was
made to form a collection. W. L. Alden in Harper's Magazine,
and James Runciman—in the St. James' Gazette [1884, I think – LA Smith quoted him] and other papers—wrote articles on the subject, and gave musical quotations.
//

Critique of LA Smith:
//
In 1888 Miss L. A. Smith of Newcastle-on-Tyne published The Music
of the Waters, a thick volume into which was tumbled indiscrimi-
nately and uncritically a collection of all sorts of tunes from all
sorts of countries which had any connection with seas, lakes,
rivers, or their geographical equivalents. Scientific folk-song
collecting was not understood in those days, and consequently all
was fish that came to the authoress's net. Sailor shanties and
landsmen's nautical effusions were jumbled together higgledy-
piggledy, …But this lack of discrimination, pardonable in those days,
was not so serious as the inability to write the tunes down cor-
rectly. So long as they were copied from other song-books they
were not so bad. But when it came to taking them down from the
seamen's singing the results were deplorable. Had the authoress
been able to give us correct versions of the shanties, her collection
would have been a valuable one. One example (of what runs all
through the book) will be sufficient to show how a lack of the rudi-
ments of music renders valueless what would otherwise have been
a document of importance. This is the Tyneside version of "Johnny Boker," one of the best known of all shanties :
[score]

Here follows the version of Miss Smith; she gives no words, and
entitles it "Johnny Polka" :—
[score]

It will be seen that the notes are given correctly, but their respective
time values are all wrong, and the barring which this involves
makes the version a travesty.
//

Continues, comparing his Tyneside work to Smith's.
//
The book contains altogether about thirty-two shanties collected
from sailors in the Tyne seaports. [Actually, probably only 14-18 of them at most were collected by Smith.] Since both Miss Smith and
myself hail from Newcastle, her "hunting ground " for shanties
was also mine, and I am consequently in a position to assess the
importance or unimportance of her work. I may therefore say
that although hardly a single shanty is noted down correctly, I can
see clearly (having myself noted the same tunes, in the same dis-
trict,) what she intended to convey, and furthermore can vouch
for the accuracy of some of the words which were common to north
country sailors, and have not appeared in other collections. As
examples I may mention those of " Rio Grande," " Lowlands,"
" Blow the man down," " Hilo my Ranzo Way," " Santy Anna,"
and " Heave away my Johnny." If I have dealt at some length
with Miss Smith's book it is not because I wish to disparage a well-
intentioned effort, but because I constantly hear The Music of
the Waters quoted as an authoritative book on sailor shanties ;
and since the shanties in it were all collected in the district where
I spent boyhood and youth, I am familiar with all of them, and can
state definitely that they are in no sense authoritative. I should
like however to pay my tribute of respect to Miss Smith's industry,
and to her enterprise in calling attention to tunes that then seemed
in a fair way to disappear.
//

Now, on to critiquing Davis/Tozer:
//
About the same time appeared a collection entitled Sailors'
Songs or Chanties, in which the music was "composed and arranged on traditional sailor airs " by Dr. Ferris Tozer. These two
pieces of information rule the book out of court, since (a) a sailor
song is not a shanty, and (b) to "compose and arrange on traditional
airs" is to destroy the traditional form.
//

On Whall.
//
Other collections have since appeared, but (for reasons into which
I prefer not to enter here) none of them are genuinely authoritative
save Capt. W. B. Whall's -Sea Songs, Ships, and Shanties. Capt.
Whall studied music under Sir John Stainer, consequently we have
the necessary combination (which all the other collections lack) of
seamanship and musicianship.
//

Establishing his authority.
//
Since I follow the profession of a
church organist, it may reasonably be asked "by what authority "
I speak concerning shanties, and shanty collecting. I ought there-
fore to explain that my maternal ancestors have followed the sea
as far back as the family history can be traced. I have "grown
up with" sailor shanties,—sung to me by sailor uncles and grand-
uncles since I was a child. I have in later years collected shanties
from all manner of sailors, but chiefly from Northumbrian sources.
I have collated these later versions with the ones which I learnt at
first hand from sailor relatives as a boy. And lastly, I lived for
some years in the West Indies,—one of the few remaining spots
where the shanty is still alive.
//

Etymology/spelling again.
//
The derivation of the word is unknown. Two have been pro-
posed, but without producing any evidence that could satisfy a
philologist. One of them, (un) chanti has the disadvantage of
suggesting that the word rhymes with "auntie"; and when, in
consequence of this derivation, the word is spelt "chanty," the
ordinary reader is led to pronounce it " tchahnty " which arouses
the irritation and contempt of the sailor, who always, everywhere
makes it alliterate with " shall " and rhyme with " scanty." Its
pronunciation is best represented by "Shanty " as in the Oxford
Dictionary, which assigns 1869 for its introduction into literature.
There is very little to be said for the derivation from shanty, a hut,
but that from (un) chani will not bear serious inspection.
As to the origin of shanty tunes I have a third explanation, but
it cannot be printed. They would appear to have been sung in
British ships as early as the 15th century. But as Capt. Whall
deals with this point in his book, nothing further need be said here.
The varied character of the sailor's tunes indicates a variety of
sources. Mediterranean voyages would account for Italian in-
fluence, as, for example, in the following, which has not been
printed before. Although sung to me by a Northumbrian sailor,
it is redolent of the languor of Venetian lagoons, of moonlight, and
swift stealing gondolas, and the tinkling guitar, with ite unchanging
tonic and dominant harmonies :—

My Johnny. [w/ score]

We're homeward bound today But where is my Johnny;
My own dear Johnny, My own dear Johnny,
Well drink and court and play, But always think of Johnny.
My lively Johnny, Goodbye.

This is clearly a definite song annexed wholesale, and fitted with
English words. Its modern tonality will not attract folk-song
collectors, but my sailorman informed me that it was a favourite
"interchangeable" shanty in his ship.
//
The above "Italian influenced" song was reprinted in Hugill, and I've rendered it here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=04a09UGm_X8

Begins to present his uniquely collected items, with [BILLY BOY]:
//
Folk-songs learnt ashore in his native fishing village provided
much of the material from which the sailor's shanty was fashioned.
Sometimes there would be no adaptation, and the song (especially
if it had a double refrain) would be sung complete, as in the following
example. It is Northumbrian in origin, and deals with the same
topic as "My boy Billy" collected by Dr. Vaughan-Williams.

Both words and tune are different from Dr. Vaughan-Williams's,
but the idea is the same :—" Billy " has been out courting, and
undergoes cross-questioning concerning the qualifications of his
lady-love as housewife. The theme seems common (with varying
words and tune) to several English counties.

BILLY BOY.

Where hev ye been aal the day, Billy Boy, Billy Boy?
Where hev ye been aal the day, me Billy Boy?
I've been walkin' aal the day with me charm-in' Nancy Grey,
And me Nancy kittl'd [=tickled] me fancy,
Oh me charmin' Billy Boy.

Solo Is she fit to be yor wife, Billy Boy, Billy Boy ?
Chorus Is she fit to be yor wife, My Billy Boy ?
Solo She's as fit to be me wife As the fork is to the knife,
Chorus And me Nancy kittled, etc.
//

[GOOD MORNING LADIES ALL]
//
Although I had the following from a Northumbrian sailor, I
should hesitate to ascribe the tune to a Northumbrian source with-
out further corroboration. Again the theme—or at least the title—
is a familiar one, but I have not come across the tune (or variants
of it) in any other part of the country. It was used as a halliard
shanty :—

GOOD MORNING, LADIES ALL.

Now a long good-bye to you my dear.
With a heave Oh haul!
And a last farewell and a long farewell.
And good morning ladies all.
//

Another item that Terry remembers from youth in a fishing village. However, its use as a chanty is dubious.
//
The following beautiful tune I used to hear when a child in the
fishing villages of Cresswell and Hauxley. I have the authority of
Mr. James Runciman for its being used as a capstan shanty. I
cannot remember the words, but Mr. Runciman printed two verses
in his book The Romance, of the Coast. I can now find no one
in the district who remembers the song, and my efforts to recapture
the words (by enquiries in Newcastle newspapers) have so far
proved fruitless. Sir Walter Runciman—who knows practically
all the shanties which had a vogue in Blyth ships—tells me that he
nevef heard this particular tune so used. He thinks it must have
been " made into a shanty " only aboard the ship in which Mr.
James Runciman heard it. I give the chorus, as my memory is
not to be trusted for the rest of the words :—

Hev ye seen owt o' maa bonny lad.
And are ye sure he's weel—Oh?
He's gyen ower land, Wiv his stick in his hand.
He's gyen te moor the keel—Oh.
//

A long explanation why he thinks some chanties were localized in his native area. Basically, well-trained sailors tended to stay with the same ship.
//
In my boyhood the Northumbrian coast was specially rich in
folk-songs known to the inhabitants of every fishing village. A
considerable proportion of these were bilinear in form, with a lilt
or refrain after each line. The presence of this double chorus
made such folk-songs specially suitable for shanties. Up to now
I do not think it has ever been satisfactorily explained in print why
shanties' of this type were so strictly localised. The facts would
seem to be these. At Blyth and Amble, for example, there was a
flourishing Seaman's Union. Its objects were not so pronounced
as the Seamen's Unions of to-day. It was to some extent a benefit
club, and only on matters of grave importance did it approach
shipowners in its corporate capacity. The duty on which it most
prided itself, and which it carried out with the utmost rigour was
the examination of apprentices when they bad completed their
indentures. Every apprentice when " out of his time " aspired to
a position as Able Seaman either aboard' the vessel in which he had
served his apprenticeship, or some other ship belonging to the
same port. But sailors in those days were very jealous of their
prestige and their privileges. In their pride of seamanship they
resented the presence of a lubber aboard their ship. Consequently
before they would consent to sail with any time-expired apprentice,
the latter was obliged to appear before a small board or committee
of the sailors of the union, and undergo a very searching exami-
nation on all points of practical seamanship. If he passed this
severe test he was at liberty to sail in any ship, and was received
by any crew as a comrade and an equal. If he failed, he could
only ship aboard a vessel as " Half Marrow," receiving only half
an ordinary AB's pay. In such contempt was the Half Marrow
held, that many ships' crews would not sail with one, and I have
even known engagements (contracted during apprenticeship) broken
off because a girl's pride would not allow her to marry a sailor
whom she regarded as a discredit to his profession. I have also
known cases where a Half Marrow, scorned by every ship in his
native seaport, was obliged to migrate to the Tyne or even to
Bristol, in order to obtain employment aboard a type of ship which
carried a miscellaneous crew, and where the corporate pride of
seamanship was not so pronounced. In those days sailors became
so attached to their ship that they were content to spend their
whole lives in her, and almost broke their hearts if circumstances
obliged them to make a change. It will thus be seen that any
local folk-song which obtained a footing aboard the ships of any
one port would not be likely, owing to the more or less fixed
personnel of the crews, to travel farther afield.
//

I am surprised how much his [ROLL THE COTTON DOWN] resembles Bullen's, and that after just referring to Bullen's ideas. It is very similar, and yet seems to be subtley changed at liberty! (And what's the deal with not mentioning Bullen by name?
//
Another source of shanties was undoubtedly negroid. The
following well-known shanty is a type with which sailors would
necessarily become familiar at cotton seaports :—

ROLL THE COTTON DOWN.

I'm bound to Alabama
Oh roll the cotton down,
I'm bound to Alabama
Oh roll the cotton down.

I have seen it stated in the preface to a recent collection of
shanties that those of negro origin are characterized by what we
should now call ragtime. This is far from being the case. If there
is one thing more than another which distinguishes negro music,
it is its direct and insistent rhythm. Everything the negro does
is rhythmic… Ragtime is a product of the stage nigger,
not of the real negro. I never found any negro use syncopation.
The popular impression that he does so is no doubt due to careless
observation of the way in which he beats time to any given tune,
viz :—by a tap of the foot followed by a clap of the hands. The
foot-tap always comes on the strong beat, and the hand-clap on
the weak one. Since the bare foot makes no sound, the casual
observer does not notice its action, but he does both see and hear
the hand-clap (off the beat) and thinks he is listening to syncopation.
A moment's reflection will show that ragtime or any other form of
syncopated music is just the thing which could not be used for a
shanty where the pull on the rope must necessarily occur on the strong beat of the music.
//
I can agree that the "business" parts of a chanty are not to be syncopated, but to say that Black music contains no syncopation…???!

"American influence." [SHENANDOAH]
//
American influence both as regards music and phraseology is
traceable throughout the history of the shanty. One quotation
of a beautiful tune—known to every sailor—will suffice :—

SHENANDOAH.

Oh, Shenandore, I long to hear you
Away you rolling river;
Oh, Shenandore, I long to hear you,
Away I'm bound to go 'cross the wide Missouri.
//

Mention of borrowing from longshore material, eg [A-ROVING], [JOHN BROWN'S BODY], [SACRAMENTO].
//
Another source about which there is a certain amount of mis-
apprehension is to be found in popular airs which were annexed in
their entirety. " A-roving," " John Brown's Body," and others
were used in this way. "Camptown Races" became "The Banks
of Sacramento " and so on. As an old sailor once said to me " You
can make anything into a shanty."
//

Then makes an argument for a different origin of [PADDY ON THE RAILWAY], saying it was developed from or originally was a shanty. I believe his facts are not straight!
//
Bullen included in his collection the equally well-known " Poor Paddy works on the Railway," and his expressed dislike for it was doubtless due to the commonly accepted opinion that it was not a genuine shanty, but
had been imported wholesale from "The Christy Minstrels" who
flourished in the 'fifties. But I think it is not sufficiently under-
stood that just as sailors borrowed and adapted tunes from any
and every source, so did the Christy Minstrels. Without wishing
to be dogmatic, I have the following reason for thinking that "The
Christies " annexed " Poor Paddy " from the sailor, and not vice
versa. Mr. James Runciman (who died in 1891 [born 1852!]) gave me a shanty which he had learnt from a great-uncle of his, the melody of which
is nothing more or less than that of " Poor Paddy." I place the
two side by side for purposes of comparison :—

THE SHAVER.

When I was a little tiny boy, I went to sea in Stormy's employ.
I sail'd away across the sea, When I was just a Shaver, a Shaver.
It's I was weary of the sea, when I was just a Shaver.

Solo Oh they whacked me up, and they whacked me down.
The Mate he cracked me on the crown.
They whacked me round, and round, and round.
Chorus When I was just a Shaver. It's I was weary, etc.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VEIfuL_dIOY

POOR PADDY WORKS ON THE RAILWAY.

In eighteen hundred and forty one, My cordaroy breeches I put on,
My cordaroy breeches I put on, To work upon the railway, the railway. I'm weary of the railway, Oh poor Paddy works on the railway.

So here at any rate we have an instance of a tune, universally
attributed to the Christy Minstrels, but which (whatever its original
source) was actually sung at sea before the Christy Minstrels came
into existence. [OK, but they came into existence in 1843.] (A " Shaver "—by the way—is the north country equivalent of the Cockney term " Little Nipper.")
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 13 Jul 11 - 07:42 PM

1920        Terry, R.R. "Sailor Shanties (II)." _Music and Letters_ 1(3) (July 1920):256-268.

Continuation of Part I. Here, Terry moves on to give more shanties, filed under type.

A general observation: Many of the examples given seem to me suspiciously like they were drawn from earlier collections (of which Terry sticks to just the major ones, without delving into any side articles or historical literature). They are not wholesale reproductions, but rather, composites, in order to create what Terry might have thought were 'ideal' forms. Terry does mention, at every turn, his credentials—his experience hearing chanties whilst growing up. But while he may have been familiar with the songs generally, I am skeptical as to whether he actually remembered their musical and lyrical details and whether he isn't, rather, using the works of previous others to create his examples. Many have the feel of Bullen's melodies, but the lyrics are fleshed out from other sources.

I know that Terry, like Sharp, utilized John Short as an informant. That would certainly explain some similarities. However:
1) At this point, Terry is not citing his informants, nor is he citing his desk-sources specifically. This suggests a sort of cavalier attitude, more indicative of a performing musician than a folklorist, where the songs are presumed to be "out there" as de-contextualizable (??) objects, regardless of their singers, place, time, etc. In other words, it's OK (it doesn't matter much) if one mixes up details from different sources, and there's no need to mention a sources because any other source would be the same.
2) Trying to compare all the sources, from which I argue Terry may have drawn to make his composites, is difficult. They all need to be in front of you, and it's a time-consuming process that must be done song-by-song. I am not going to do it right now. And, I am going to wait until studying Terry's big collection to see what he claims to be the source of each item.

[LOWLANDS AWAY]
//
LOWLANDS.

Lowlands, Lowlands, Away, my John!
Lowlands, away, I heard them say,
My dollar and a half a day.
A dollar and a half a day is a Hoosier's pay.
Lowlands, Lowlands, away, my John!
A dollar and a half a day is very good pay.
My dollar and a half a day.
//

[JOHNNY COME DOWN TO HILO]
//
Of the more rhythmic capstan shanties, the following rollicking tune (known to every sailor) is a fair sample:-

JOHNNY COMES DOWN TO HILO.

I nebber see de like since I bin born,
When a big buck nigger wid de sea boots on,
Sez Johnny come down to Hilo, O poor old man.
Oh wake her, Oh shake her, Oh wake dat gel wid de blue dress on,
When Johnny comes down to Hilo, O poor old man.
//

[GOODBYE FARE YOU WELL]
//
GOODBYE FARE YE WELL.

I thought I heard the old man say,
Goodbye, fare-ye-well, Goodbye, fare-ye-well.
I thought I heard the old man say,
Hooray, my boys, we're homeward bound.
//

//
Hauling shanties…required for "the short pull" or "sweating up." (Americans called them the long and the short drag).
//

[REUBEN RANZO]
//
REUBEN RANZO

Oh pity poor Reuben Ranzo.
Ranzo, boys, Ranzo.
Oh poor old Reuben Ranzo.
Ranzo, boys, Ranzo.
//

[BOWLINE], "sweating up"
//
HAUL THE BOWLIN'.
We'll haul the bowlin' so early in the morning.
[cho.]We'll haul the bowlin', the bowlin' haul.

So much effort was now required on the pull that it was difficult to sing a musical note at that point. The last word was therefore usually shouted.
//

[PADDY DOYLE]
//
One tune of this type (when a special collective effort was required) was that used to " bunt up " the foresail or mainsail in furling. In this operation the canvas of the sail was doubled in-tensively until it formed a smooth conical bundle. This was called a "bunt," and a strong collective effort was required to get it onto the yard. Only one short tune was ever used for this bunting operation. It differs from all other shanties in being sung tutti throughout:-

PADDY DOYLE'S BOOTS.
To me Way-ay-ay-ah.
We'll pay Paddy Doyle for his BOOTS.

The same words were sung over and over again, but very occasionally a different text would be substituted. Capt. Whall gives two alternatives which were sometimes used: "We'll all drink brandy and gin" and "We'll all shave under the chin." Mr. Morley Roberts also told me that a variant in his ship was "We'll all throw dirt at the cook."
//

The following passage shows that Terry had little or no experience with shanties as they were sung aboard ship.
//
For "pull-and-haul" shanties, the shantyman took up his position near the workers (he did no work himself) and announced the shanty,-sometimes by singing the first line. This established the tune to which they were to supply the chorus. For capstan shanties he usually did the same. He is generally shown in pictures as sitting on the capstan, but so far as I can learn, he more usually took up his position on or against the knightheads.
//

Nature of lyrics again, extemporized, often dirty.
//
Each shanty had one or two stereotyped verses, after which the shantyman extemporised on any topics he chose. There was no need for any connection or relevancy between one verse and another, nor were rhymes required. The main thing that mattered was that the rhythm should be preserved, and that the words should be such as would keep the workers merry. Great license was taken in this respect, and the intimacy of the shantyman's topics was such as to make his extemporised verses unprintable. As Capt. Whall says-no seaman in a cargo-carrying ship ever heard a "decent " shanty, and in passenger vessels the shantyman was given the option of "decent words or no shanty." He mentions the notorious "Hog's-eye man" (to which I refer later) as a case in point.
//

[HAUL AWAY JOE]
//
It is curious that some of the loveliest melodies were those to which the lewdest kind of words were usually fitted. The following is an instance. Only a few verses are fit for print: --

HAUL, HAUL AWAY.

Way haul away, We'll haul away the bow lin'.
[cho.] Haul away, Haul away JOE.

King Louis was the King of France, Before the Revolution.
Way haul away, etc.

King Louis got his head cut off, And spoiled his constitution.
Way haul away, etc.
//

Some quasi-narrative chanties.
//
A few shanties had a definite narrative which was adhered to, extemporaneous verses being added only if the regulation ones did not spin out to the end of the job in hand. One of the most popular of these was " Reuben Ranzo " above quoted. It had two usual versions, one with a happy ending (the captain took him into his cabin and "learned him navigation," afterwards marrying him to his daughter) and the other concluding with the tragedy of Ranzo being led to the gangway to receive "five-and-furty " lashes for his dirty habits. (In yet another version the indignant crew threw him overboard).
//

Role of shantyman.
//
The importance of a shantyman could not be overestimated. A good shantyman with a pretty wit was worth his weight in gold. He was a privileged person, and was excused all work save light or odd jobs.
//

The next part gives clear evidence for my suspicions of Terry's shady presentation. After slamming scholars for looking for "modes", he claims [STAND TO YOUR GROUND" is "modal." However, what he has done is reproduce Whall's example having removed the accidentals (G#'s)! I just don't get it.
//
Like all traditional tunes, some shanties are in the ancient modes, and others in the modern major and minor keys. It is the habit of the " folksonger " (I am not alluding to our recognised folk-song experts) to find "modes " in every traditional tune. It will suffice therefore, to say that shanties follow the course of all other traditional music. Many are modern, and easily recognisable as such; others are modal in character, e.g.:

STAND TO YOUR GROUND
Sally am de gal dat I lub dearly.
Way, sing Sally;
O, Sally am de gal dat I lub dearly.
Hilo, John Brown, stand to your ground.
//

[DRUNKEN SAILOR]
//
WHAT SHALL WE DO WITH THE DRUNKEN SAILOR.

What shall we do with the drunken sailor?
What shall we do with the drunken sailor?
What shall we do with the drunken sailor,
Early in the morning. etc.
//

[HOGEYE] It compares to Sharp's / Short's version in English Folk-Chanteys.
//
THE HOG'S-EYE MAN.

Oh, de Hog's eye man is de man fer me;
He war raised'way down in Tennessee
Oh, Hog's-eye, oh;
Row de boat a- shore fer de Hog's-eye,
Steady on a jig with the Hog's-eye, Oh;
She wants de Hog's-eye man.
//

[MR. STORMALONG]
//
Others fulfil to a certain extent modal conditions, but are never-theless in keys.

STORMALONG.

Old Stormy he was a bully old man,
Tib-by way-oh Stormalong.
Oh poor old Stormy's dead and gone,
Ay, ay, ay, Mister Storm along.
//

Major and minor key switch. Much speculation.
//
Like many other folk-songs, certain shanties originally no doubt in a mode were, by the insertion of leading notes, converted into the minor, key. There was also the tendency on the part of the modem sailor to turn his minor key into a major one. I sometimes find sailors singing in the major nowadays, tunes which the very old men of my boyhood used to sing in the minor. A case in point is "Haul away Joe," already quoted. Miss Smith is correct in giving it the minor form which once obtained on the Tyne, and I am inclined to hazard the opinion that that was the original form, and not, as now, the following …
In later times I have also heard The Drutnken Sailor (a distinctly modal tune) sung in the major as follows…
I have generally found that these perversions of the tunes are due to sailors who took to the sea as young men in the last days of the sailing ship, and consequently did not imbibe to the full the old traditions. With the intolerance of youth they assumed that the modal tum given to a shanty by the older sailor was the mark of ignorance since it did not square with their ideas of a major or minor key.
//

In this long passage, Terry talks up his awareness of fieldwork issues, yet he then justifies his presentation of ideal forms, deprecating the "variant" collection of Sharp's ilk and putting down "undeducated" informants.
//
This experience is common to all folk-tune collectors. Other characteristics, for example :-(a) different words to the same melody, (b) different melodies to the same or similar words, need not be enlarged upon here as they will be self-evident when a definitive collection is published. Of the usual troubles incidental to folk-song collecting it is un-necessary to speak. But the collection of shanties involves difficulties of a special kind. In taking down a folk-song from a rustic, one's chief difficulty is surmounted when one has broken down his shyness and induced him to sing. There is nothing for him to do then but get on with the song. Shanties however, being labour songs, one is "up against" the strong psychological connection between the song and its manual acts. …An incident related to me quite casually by Sir Walter Runciman throws a similar light on the inseparability of a shanty and its labour. He described how one evening several north country ships happened to be lying in a certain port. All the officers and crews were ashore leaving only the apprentices aboard, some of whom as he, remarked were " very keen on shanties," and their suggestion of passing away the time by singing some was received with enthusiasm. The whole party of about thirty apprentices at once collected themselves aboard one vessel, sheeted home the main topsail, and commenced to haul it up to the tune of "Boney was a warrior," changing to " Haul the Bowlin' " for " sweating up." In the enthusiasm of their singing and the absence of any officer to call " 'Vast hauling" they continued operations until they broke the topsail yard in two, when the sight of the wreckage and the fear of consequences brought the singing to an abrupt conclusion. In my then ignorance, I naturally asked "Why couldn't you have sung shanties without hoisting the topsail? " and the reply was:-" How could we sing a shanty without having our hands on the rope? " …The only truly satisfactory results which I ever get nowadays from an old sailor are when he has been stimulated by conversation to become reminiscent, and croons his shanties almost sub-consciously. Whenever I find a sailor willing to declaim shanties in the style of a song I begin to be a little suspicious of his seamanship... Of course I have had sailors sing shanties to me in a fine declamatory manner, but I usually found one of three things to be the case :-the man was a "sea lawyer"; or had not done much deep-sea sailing; or his seaman-ship only dated from the decline of the sailing vessel. It is doubtless interesting to the folksonger to see in print shanties taken down from an individual sailor with his individual melodic twirls and twiddles. But since no two sailors ever sing the same shanty quite in the same manner, there must necessarily be some means of getting at the tune, unhampered by these individual idiosyncrasies, which are quite a different thing from what folk-song students recognise as "variants." The power to discriminate can only be acquired by familiarity with the shanty as it was in its palmy days. The collector who now comes upon the scene at this late time of day must necessarily be at a disadvantage. The ordinary methods which he would apply to a folk-song break down in the case of a labour song. Manual actions were the soul of the shanty; eliminate these and you have only the skeleton of what was once a living thing. It is quite possible, I know, to push this line of argument too far, but everyone who knows anything about seamanship must feel that a shanty nowadays cannot be other than a pale reflection of what it once was. That is why I deprecate the spurious authenticity conferred by print upon isolated versions of shanties sung by individual old men. When the originals are available it seems to me pedantic and academic to put into print the comic mispronunciations of well-known words by old and uneducated seamen. And this brings me to the last difficulty which confronts the collector with no previous knowledge of shanties. As a mere matter of dates, any sailors now remaining from sailing ship days must necessarily be very old men. I have found that their octo-genarian memories are not always to be trusted. On one occasion an old man sang quite glibly a tune which was in reality a pasticcio of three separate shanties all known to me. I have seen similar results in print, since the collector arrived too late upon the scene to be able to detect the tricks which an old man's memory played him. I have already spoken of shanties which were derived from popular songs, also the type which contained a definite narrative. Except where a popular song was adapted, the form was usually rhymed or more often unrhymed couplets. The topics were many and varied but the chief ones were (1) popular heroes such as Napoleon, and " Santy Anna." …(2) The sailor had mythical heroes too; e.g. " Ranzo " (already mentioned) and " Stormy" who was the theme of many shanties. …(3) High sounding, poetic, or mysterious words such as " Lowlands," " Shenandoah," " Rolling river," " Hilo," " Mobile Bay," " Rio Grande " had a great fascination, as their constant recurrence in many shanties shows. (4) The sailor also sang much of famous ships, such as "The Flying Cloud," " The Henry Clay," or " The Victory," and famous lines such as " The Black Ball."... (5) Love affairs (in which Lizer Lee and other damsels constantly figured) were an endless topic. (6) But chiefly did Jack sing of affairs connected with his ship. He never sang of "the rolling main," " the foaming billows," " the storm clouds," etc. These are the stock-in-trade of the landsman; they were too real for the sailor to sing about. He had the instinct of the primitive man…
//

[HEAVE AWAY MY JOHNNIES]
//
WE'RE ALL BOUND TO GO.

Oh Johnny was a rover and today he sails away.
Heave away my Johnny, Heave away-ay
Oh Johnny was a rover and today he sails away.
Heave away my bully boys, We're all bound to go.

As I was walking out one day, Down by the Albert Dock.
Heave away, etc.
I heard an emigrant Irish girl Conversing with Tapscott.
Heave away, etc.

Good morning, Mr. Tapscott, sir; "Good morn, my gel," sez he.
Heave away, etc.
It's have you got a Packet Ship All bound for Amerikee.
Heave away, etc.
//

The example of "knock a man down" that he uses in the following argument does not work. Because Adams (and others), not only Sharp, had attested a "knock a man down." Moreover, Sharp got the version from John Short – is Terry alleging that Sharp changed the lyrics?
//
…One feature of the words may be noted. The sailor's instinct for romance was so strong that in his choruses at least (no matter how " hair curling " the solo might be) he always took the crude edge off the concrete and presented it as an abstraction if possible. For example; he knew perfectly well that one meaning of "to blow " was to knock or kick. He knew that discipline in Yankee packets was maintained by corporeal methods; so much so that the mates (to whom the function of knocking the " packet rats" about was delegated) were termed 1st, 2nd, and 3rd " blowers" or strikers, and in the shanty he sang "Blow the man down." " Knock " or " kick " (as I have recently seen in a printed collection) was too crudely realistic for him. In like manner the humorous title "Hogs-eye" veiled the coarse intimacy of the term which it represented. And that is where--when collecting shanties from the " longshore " mariner of to-day--I find him (if he is un-educated) so tiresome. He not only wants to explain to me as a landsman the exact meaning (which I know already) of terms which the old type of sailor, with his natural delicacy, avoided discussing, but he tries where possible to work them into his shanty,-- a thing the sailor of old time never did. So that when one sees in print expressions which sailors did not use, it is presumptive evidence that the collector has been imposed upon by a salt of the "sea lawyer" type. Perhaps I ought to make this point clearer. Folk-song collecting was once merely an artistic pursuit. Now it has become a flourishing industry of high commercial value. From the commercial point of view it is essential that results should be printed and circulated as widely as possible. Some knowledge of seamanship is an absolute necessity where folk-shanties are concerned. The mere collector nowadays does not possess that knowledge; it is confined to those who have had practical experience of the sea, but who will never print their experiences. The mere collector must print his versions…
//

Getting profound… then a bit snide, about insider knowledge. And more notes on the nature of "dirty" lyrics.
//
…What is unprinted must remain unknown; what is printed is therefore accepted as authoritative, however misleading it may be. Many highly educated men, of which Captain Whall is the type, have followed the sea. It is from them that the only really trustworthy information is forthcoming. But so far as I can judge, it is uneducated men who appear to sing to collectors nowadays, and I have seen many a quiet smile on the lips of the educated sailor when he is confronted with printed versions of the uneducated seaman's performances. For example, one of the best known of all Shanties is "The Hog's-eye man." I have seen this entitled "The Hog-eyed man," and even "The Ox-eyed Man." Every old sailor knew the meaning of the term. Whall and Bullen, who were both sailors, use the correct expression, "Hog-eye." The majority of sailors of my acquaintance called it "Hog's-eye." Did decency permit I could show conclusively how Whall and Bullen are right and the mere collector wrong. It must suffice, however, for me to say that the term " Hog's-eye " or "Hog-eye" had Nothing whatever to do with the optic of the "Man" who was sung about. I could multiply instances, but this one is typical and must suffice. We hear a great deal of the coarseness and even lewdness of the shanty, but I could wish a little more stress were laid on the sailor's natural delicacy. Jack was always a gentleman in feeling. Granted his drinking, cursing, and amours; but were not these until Victorian times the hall mark of every gentleman ashore? The Rabelaisian jokes of the shantyman were solos, the sound of which would not travel far beyond the little knot of workers who chuckled over them. The choruses--shouted out by the whole working party -- would be heard all over the ship, and even penetrate ashore if she were in port. Hence, in not a single instance do the choruses of any shanty contain a coarse expression.
//

Terry makes a distinction in shanty performance style that I have not seen before. I'm not sure what to make of it yet.
//
One final remark about collectors which has an important bearing upon the value of their work. There were two classes of sailing vessels that sailed from English ports, --the coaster or the mere collier that plied between the Tyne or Severn and Boulogne, and the Southspainer, under which term was comprised all deep-sea vessels. On the collier or short voyage vessel the crew was necessarily a small one, and the Shanty was more or less of a makeshift, adapted to the capacity of the limited members of the crew. Purely commercial reasons precluded the engagement of any Shantyman specially distinguished for his musical attainments. Consequently, so far as the Shanty was concerned, "any old thing would do." On the Southspainer, however, things were very different. The Shantyman was usuallv a person of considerable musical importance, who sang his songs in a more or less finished manner; his melodies were clean clear-cut things without any of the folk-songer's quavers and wobbles. I heard them in the 'seventies and 'eighties before the sailing-ship had vanished, consequently I speak of the things I know.
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 15 Jul 11 - 10:23 PM

1921        Terry, Richard Runciman. _The Shanty Book, Part I._ London: J. Curwen & Sons.

As Bradford & Fagge's short set was the score to the earliest commercial chanty recordings, Terry's collection went on to become a main source for chanties during the 1920s commercial/mainstream shanty boom. Terry had his feet in the world of "legitimate" classical music performances; he was known in that world. And perhaps that is why his work was adopted over Sharp's. (Sharp's would be used by the folklore-oriented Revival performers.) Bullen's work, at least directly speaking, was ignored by performers. As noted earlier, however, my personal suspicions are that many of Terry's forms (most aside from those that were unique to his "Tyneside" collecting experiences) were composite, "ideal" that he created in part through referencing the major collections that preceded him (i.e. like Hugill). He justified this by citing his general familiarity with chanties that came from growing up around sailor relatives. His creations, as performance models, may be "good enough," so far as performances are expected to vary. But I am cautious of using them uncritically as evidence for historical scholarship on chanties.

From the Foreword by Sir Walter Runciman, praising Terry's a a unique new collection of someone who has the life experience to match musical skill, and validating the musical forms. Also notes shanties as part of [British] "folk-music".
//
Whatever landsmen may think about shanty words—with their cheerful inconsequence, or light-hearted coarseness—there can be no two opinions about the tunes, which, as folk-music, are a national asset.
I know, of course, that several shanty collections are in the market, but as a sailor I am bound to say that only one—Capt. W.B. Whall's 'Sea Songs, Ships, and Shanties'—can be regarded as authoritative. Only a portion of Capt. Whall's delightful book is devoted to shanties, of which he prints the melodies only (without accompaniment); and of these he does not profess to give more than those he himself learnt at sea. I am glad, therefore, to welcome Messrs. Curwen's project of a wide and representative collection. Dr. Terry's qualifications as editor are exceptional, since he was reared in an environment of nineteenth-century seamen, and is the only landsman I have met who is able to render shanties as the old seamen did. I am not musician enough to criticize his pianoforte accompaniments, but I can vouch for the authenticity of the melodies as he presents them, untampered with in any way.
//

Most of the introductory/background material comes from Terry's articles in Music & Letters (reproduced verbatim), and I will not repeat it.

More claiming of experience:

//
It may reasonably be asked by what authority a mere landsman publishes a book on a nautical subject. I may, therefore, plead in extenuation that I have all my life been closely connected with seafaring matters, especially during childhood and youth, and have literally 'grown up with' shanties. My maternal ancestors followed the sea as far back as the family history can be traced, and sailor uncles and grand-uncles have sung shanties to me from my childhood upwards. During boyhood I was constantly about amongst ships, and had learnt at first hand all the popular shanties before any collection of them appeared in print. I have in later years collected them from all manner of sailors, chiefly at Northumbrian sources. I have collated these later versions with those which I learnt at first hand as a boy from sailor relatives, and also aboard ship. And lastly, I lived for some years in the West Indies, one of the few remaining spots where shanties may still be heard, where my chief recreation was cruising round the islands in my little ketch. In addition to hearing them in West Indian seaports, aboard Yankee sailing ships and sugar droghers, I also heard them sung constantly on shore in Antigua under rather curious conditions. West Indian negro shanties are movable wooden huts,…
//

And on etymology and spelling again. He says that shanties were English, in contradistinction to French, but with his "hut" theory of etymology vaguely implies he believes shanty origins to lie in the Caribbean.
//
…The 'literary' sailors, Clark Russell and Frank Bullen, have also spelt it 'chanty,' but their reason is obvious. The modest seaman always bowed before the landsman's presumed superiority in 'book-larnin'.' What more natural than that Russell and Bullen, obsessed by so ancient a tradition, should accept uncritically the landsman's spelling. But educated sailors devoid of 'literary' pretensions have always written the word as it was pronounced. To my mind the strongest argument against the literary landsman's derivation of the word is that the British sailor cultivated the supremest contempt for everything French, and would be the last person to label such a definitely British practice as shanty-singing with a French title. If there had been such a thing in French ships as a labour-song bearing such a far-fetched title as (un) chanté, there might have been a remote possibility of the British sailor adopting the French term in a spirit of sport or derision, but there is no evidence that any such practice, or any such term, achieved any vogue in French ships. As a matter of fact, the Oxford Dictionary (which prints it 'shanty') states that the word never found its way into print until 1869…
If I wished to advance another theory more plausible still, and equally unconvincing, I might urge that the word was derived from the negro hut-removals already mentioned. Here, at least, we have a very ancient custom, which would be familiar to British seamen visiting West Indian seaports. The object moved was a shanty; the music accompanying the operation was called, by the negroes, a shanty tune; its musical form (solo and chorus) was identical with the sailor shanty; the pulls on the rope followed the same method which obtained at sea; the soloist was called a shantyman; like the shantyman at sea he did no work, but merely extemporized verses to which the workers at the ropes supplied the chorus; and finally, the negroes still pronounce the word itself exactly as the seaman did.
I am quite aware of the flaws in the above argument, but at least it shows a manual labour act performed both afloat and ashore under precisely similar conditions as to (a) its nature, (b) its musical setting; called by the same name, with the same pronunciation in each case; and lastly, connected, in one case, with an actual hut or shanty. Against this concrete argument we have a landsman's abstract speculation, which (a) begs the whole question, and (b) which was never heard of until a few years before the disappearance of the sailing ship. I do not assert that the negroid derivation is conclusive, but that from (un) chanté will not bear serious inspection.
//

More bibliographic notes:
//
…Of all these collections Capt. Whall's is the only one which a sailor could accept as authoritative. Capt. Whall unfortunately only gives the twenty-eight shanties which he himself learnt at sea. But to any one who has heard them sung aboard the old sailing ships, his versions ring true, and have a bite and a snap that is lacking in those published by mere collectors.
Davis and Tozer's book has had a great vogue, as it was for many years the only one on the market. But the statement that the music is 'composed and arranged on traditional sailor airs' rules it out of court in the eyes of seamen, since (a) a sailor song is not a shanty, and (b) to 'compose and arrange on traditional airs' is to destroy the traditional form.
Bullen and Arnold's book ought to have been a valuable contribution to shanty literature, as Bullen certainly knew his shanties, and used to sing them capitally. Unfortunately his musical collaborator does not appear to have been gifted with the faculty of taking down authentic versions from his singing. He seems to have had difficulty in differentiating between long measured notes and unmeasured pauses; between the respective meanings of three-four and six-eight time; between modal and modern tunes; and between the cases where irregular barring was or was not required. …
//

Method of presentation. He is respecting unique variants – when it comes to melodies, not lyrics. Bowdlerie lyrics.
//
As regards the tunes, I have adhered to the principle of giving each one as it was sung by some individual singer. This method has not been applied to the words. Consequently the verses of any given shanty may have derived from any number of singers. Since there was no connection or relevancy between the different verses of a shanty, the only principle I have adhered to is that whatever verses are set down should have been sung to me at some time or other by some sailor or other.
Of course I have had to camouflage many unprintable expressions, and old sailors will readily recognize where this has been done. Sometimes a whole verse (after the first line) has needed camouflage, and the method adopted is best expressed as follows:

There was a young lady of Gloucester
Who couldn't eat salt with her egg,
And when she sat down
She could never get up,
And so the poor dog had none.


Personal sources/thanks:
//
Amongst those to whom I owe thanks, I must number the Editors of The Music Student and Music and Letters, for allowing me to incorporate in this Preface portions of articles which I have written for them. Also to Capt. W.J. Dowdy, both for singing shanties to me himself, and affording me facilities for interviewing inmates of the Royal Albert Institution, over which he presides. I also wish to express my gratitude to those sailors who have in recent years sung shanties to me, especially Capt. R.W. Robertson, Mr. Geo. Vickers, Mr. Richard Allen, of Seahouses, and Mr. F.B. Mayoss. And last, but not least, to Mr. Morley Roberts, who has not only sung shanties to me, but has also given me the benefit of his ripe nautical experience.
//

[[Windlass and Capstan Shanties:]]

[BILLY BOY] As in 1920, with 2 verses added.
//
1. Billy Boy

This is undoubtedly a coast song 'made into a shanty.' I heard it in Northumberland, both on shore and in ships, when I was a boy. …The version of line 1, page 3, bars 2 and 3, is older than the one given in my arrangement for male-voice chorus (Curwen Edition 50572), so, upon consideration, I decided to give it here. There are many more verses, but they are not printable, nor do they readily lend themselves to camouflage. The tune has not appeared in print until now.

1. Where hev ye been äal the day,
Billy Boy, Billy Boy?

Where hev ye been äal the day, me Billy Boy?

I've been walkin' äal the day
With me charmin' Nancy Grey,

And me Nancy kittl'd me fancy

Oh me charmin' Billy Boy.

2. Is she fit to be yor wife
Billy Boy, Billy Boy?

Is she fit to be yor wife, me Billy Boy?

She's as fit to be me wife
As the fork is to the knife

And me Nancy, etc.



3. Can she cook a bit o' steak
Billy Boy, Billy Boy?

Can she cook a bit o' steak, me Billy Boy?

She can cook a bit o' steak,
Aye, and myek a gairdle cake

And me Nancy, etc.



4. Can she myek an Irish Stew
Billy Boy, Billy Boy?

Can she myek an Irish Stew, me Billy Boy?

She can myek an Irish Stew
Aye, and "Singin' Hinnies" too.

And me Nancy, etc.
//

[RIO GRANDE] learned from an uncle. Looks like a composite.
//
2. Bound for the Rio Grande

The variants of this noble tune are legion. But this version, which a sailor uncle taught me, has been selected, as I think it the most beautiful of all. I used to notice, even as a boy, how it seemed to inspire the shantyman to sentimental flights of Heimweh that at times came perilously near poetry.

1. I'll sing you a song of the fish of the sea.

Oh Rio.

I'll sing you a song of the fish of the sea

And we're bound for the Rio Grande.

Then away love, away,
'Way down Rio,

So fare ye well my pretty young gel.

For we're bound for the Rio Grande.

2. Sing good-bye to Sally, and good-bye to Sue,
And you who are listening, good-bye to you.

3. Our ship went sailing out over the Bar
And we pointed her nose for the South-er-en Star.

4. Farewell and adieu to you ladies of Spain
And we're all of us coming to see you again.


5. I said farewell to Kitty my dear,
And she waved her white hand as we passed the South Pier.

6. The oak, and the ash, and the bonny birk tree

They're all growing green in the North Countrie.
//

[GOODBYE FARE YOU WELL] As in 1920, with added verses.
//
3. Good-bye, fare ye well

This is one of the best beloved of shanties. So strongly did its sentiment appeal to sailors that one never heard the shantyman extemporize a coarse verse to it.

1. I thought I heard the old man say

Good-bye, fare ye well,
Good-bye, fare ye well.

I thought I heard the old man say,

Hooray my boys we're homeward bound.

2. We're homeward bound, I hear the sound. (twice)
3. We sailed away to Mobile Bay. (twice)
4. But now we're bound for Portsmouth Town. (twice)
5. And soon we'll be ashore again. (twice)
6. I kissed my Kitty upon the pier
And it's oh to see you again my dear.
7. We're homeward bound, and I hear the sound. (twice)
//

[JOHNNY COME DOWN TO HILO] as in 1920, with added verses.
//
4. Johnny come down to Hilo
This is clearly of negro origin. I learnt several variants of it, but for its present form I am indebted to Capt. W.J. Dowdy.

1. I nebber see de like since I bin born,

When a big buck nigger wid de sea boots on,

Says "Johnny come down to Hilo.
Poor old man."

Oh wake her, oh, shake her,
Oh wake dat gel wid de blue dress on,

When Johnny comes down to Hilo.
Poor old man.
2. I lub a little gel across de sea,

She's a Badian beauty and she sez to me,

"Oh Johnny," etc.
3. Oh was you ebber down in Mobile Bay

Where dey screws de cotton on a summer day?

When Johnny, etc.

4. Did you ebber see de ole Plantation Boss

And de long-tailed filly and de big black hoss?

When Johnny, etc.
5. I nebber seen de like since I bin born

When a big buck nigger wid de sea boots on,

Says "Johnny come down," etc.
//

[CLEAR THE TRACK] Learned "in boyhood".
//
5. Clear the track, let the Bulgine run

The tune was a favourite in Yankee Packets. It does not appear in Whall. [It did appear in the 4th edition, however] 'Bullgine' was American negro slang for 'engine.' I picked up this version in boyhood from Blyth seamen.

1. Oh, the smartest clipper you can find.

Ah ho Way-oh, are you most done.

Is the Marget Evans of the Blue Cross Line.

So clear the track, let the Bullgine run.

Tibby Hey rig a jig in a jaunting car.

Ah ho Way-oh, are you most done.

With Lizer Lee all on my knee.

So clear the track, let the Bullgine run.


2. Oh the Marget Evans of the Blue Cross Line


She's never a day behind her time.

3. Oh the gels are walking on the pier


And I'll soon be home to you, my dear.

4. Oh when I come home across the sea,

It's Lizer you will marry me. 


5. Öh shake her, wake her, before we're gone;

Oh fetch that gel with the blue dress on.
6. Oh I thought I heard the skipper say

"We'll keep the brig three points away."

7. Oh the smartest clipper you can find


Is the Marget Evans of the Blue Cross Line.
//

[LOWLANDS AWAY] As in 1920, with added verses. From John Runciman.
//
6. Lowlands away

…It was well known to every sailor down to the time of the China Clippers. My version is that of Capt. John Runciman, who belonged to that period. I have seldom found it known to sailors who took to the sea after the early seventies. The tune was sung in very free time and with great solemnity…. In North-country ships the shantyman used to make much of the theme of a dead lover appearing in the night. There were seldom any rhymes, and the air was indescribably touching when humoured by a good hand. A 'hoosier,' by the way, is a cotton stevedore. …

Lowlands, Lowlands,
Away my John,

Lowlands, away,
I heard them say,

My dollar and a half a day.



1. A dollar and a half a day is a Hoosier's pay.

Lowlands, Lowlands,
Away my John.

A dollar and a half a day is very good pay.

My dollar and a half a day.



2. Oh was you ever in Mobile Bay.

Screwing the cotton by the day.


3. All in the night my true love came,

All in the night my true love came.


4. She came to me all in my sleep. (twice)



5. And hër eyes were white my love. (twice)



6. And then I knew my love was dead. (twice)
//

[SALLY BROWN]
//
7. Sally Brown

Although its musical form is that of a halliard shanty, it was always used for the capstan. I never heard it used for any other purpose than heaving the anchor. The large-sized notes [LA TI DO] given in the last bar are those which most sailors sing to me nowadays; the small ones [RE MI DO] are those which I most frequently heard when a boy.

1. Sally Brown she's a bright Mulatter.

Way Ay-y Roll and go.

She drinks rum and chews terbacker.

Spend my money on Sally Brown.

2. Sally Brown shë has a daughter

Sent me sailin' 'cross the water.



3. Seven long years Ï courted Sally. (twice)



4. Sally Brown I'm bound to leave you

Sally Brown I'll not deceive you.



5. Sally she's a 'Badian' beauty. (twice)



6. Sally lives on the old plantation

She belongs the Wild Goose Nation.



7. Sally Brown is a bright Mulatter

She drinks rum and chews terbacker.
//

[SANTIANA]
//
8. Santy Anna

1. Oh Santy Anna won the day.

Way-Ah, me Santy Anna.

Oh Santy Anna won the day.

All on the plains of Mexico.
2. He beat the Prooshans fairly.
Way-Ah, etc.

And whacked the British nearly.
All on, etc.



3. He was a rorty gineral;

A rorty snorty gineral.



4. They took him out and shöt him.

Oh when shall we forgët him.



5. Oh Santy Anna won the day

And Gin'ral Taylor run away.
//

[SHENANDOAH] learned as a boy. As in 1920, with additional verses.
//
9. Shenandoah

…This version (sung to me by Capt. Robertson) is almost, but not quite, identical with the one I learnt as a boy. …

1. Oh Shenandoah, I long to hear you.

Away you rolling river.

Oh Shenandoah, I long to hear you.

Away, I'm bound to go
'Cross the wide Missouri.

2. Oh Shenandoah, I love your daughter. (twice)



3. 'Tis seven long years since last I see thee. (twice)



4. Oh Shenandoah, I took a notion

To sail across the stormy ocean.



5. Oh Shenandoah, I'm bound to leave you.

Oh Shenandoah, I'll not deceive you.



6. Oh Shenandoah, I long to hear you. (twice)
//

[STORMY ALONG JOHN]
//
10. Stormalong John

This is one of the many shanties with 'Stormy' as their hero. Whatever other verses were extemporized, those relating to digging his grave with a silver spade, and lowering him down with a golden chain, were rarely omitted. Other favourite verses were:
(a) I wish I was old Stormy's son.

(b) I'd build a ship a thousand ton.

1. Oh poor old Stormy's dead and gone.

Storm along boys,
Storm along.

Oh poor old Stormy's dead and gone.

Ah-ha, come along, get along,
Stormy along John.


2. I dug his grave with a silver spade. (twice)


3. I lower'd him down with a golden chain. (twice)


4. I carried him away to Mobile Bay. (twice)

5. Oh poor old Stormy's dead and gone. (twice)
//

[HOGEYE]
//
11. The Hog's-eye Man

Of the numberless versions of this shanty I have chosen that of Capt. Robertson as being the most representative. Of the infinite number of verses to this fine tune hardly one is printable. There has been much speculation as to the origin of the title. As a boy my curiosity was piqued by reticence, evasion, or declarations of ignorance, whenever I asked the meaning of the term. It was only in later life that I learnt it from Mr. Morley Roberts. His explanation made it clear why every sailor called it either 'hog-eye' or 'hog's-eye,' and why only landsmen editors ever get the word wrong. …That is all the explanation I am at liberty to give in print.

1. Oh the hog's-eye man is the man for me,
He were raised way down in Tennessee.
Oh hog's eye, oh.
Row the boat ashore for the hog's-eye.
Steady on a jig with a hog's-eye oh,
She wants the hog's-eye man.
2. Oh who's been here while I've been gone?
Söme big buck nigger, with his sea boots on?[3]

3. Oh bring me down mÿ riding cane,
For I'm off to see my darling Jane.

4. Oh Jenny's in the garden a-picking peas,
And her golden hair's hanging down to her knees.
5. Oh a hog's-eye ship, and a hog's-eye crew,
And a hog's-eye mate, and a skipper too.
//

[HUCKLEBERRY HUNTING] from Capt. Jogn Runciman.
//
12. The Wild Goose Shanty

…Allusions to 'The Wild Goose Nation' occur in many shanties, but I never obtained any clue to the meaning (if any) of the term. The verse about 'huckleberry hunting' was rarely omitted, but I never heard that particular theme further developed.

1. I'm the Shanty-man of the Wild Goose Nation.

Tibby Way-ay Hioha!

I've left my wife on a big plantation.

Hilo my Ranzo Hay!

2. Now a long farewell to the old plantation. (twice)



3. And a long farewell to the Wild Goose Nation. (twice)


4. Oh the boys and the girls went a huckleberry hunting. (twice)


5. Then good-bye and farewell yöu rolling river. (twice)



6. I'm the Shanty-man of the Wild Goose Nation.

I've left my wife on a big plantation.
//

[HEAVE AWAY MY JOHNNIES] as in 1920, with added verses.
//
13. We're all bound to go

I used to hear this tune constantly on the Tyne. It is one of the few shanties which preserved a definite narrative, but each port seems to have offered variants on the names of the ships that were 'bound for Amerikee.' 'Mr. Tapscott' was the head of a famous line of emigrant ships. The last word in verse 5 was always pronounced male. This has led to many shantymen treating it not as meal, but as the mail which the ship carried. As the shanty is full of Irish allusions, the probabilities are that the word was meal, to which the sailor gave what he considered to be the Irish pronunciation. Whenever I heard the shanty it was given with an attempt at Irish pronunciation throughout.

1. Oh Johnny was a rover
And to-day he sails away.

Heave away, my Johnny,
Heave away-ay.

Oh Johnny was a rover
And to-day he sails away.

Heave away my bully boys,
We're all bound to go.

2. As I was walking out one day,
Down by the Albert Dock.

I heard an emigrant Irish girl
Conversing with Tapscott.


3. "Good mornin', Mister Tapscott, sir,"
"Good morn, my gel," sez he,

"It's have you got a Packet Ship
All bound for Amerikee?"



4. "Oh yes, I've got a Packet Ship,
I have got one or two.

I've got the Jenny Walker
And I've got the Kangeroo."



5. "I've got the Jenny Walker
And to-day she does set sail,

With five and fifty emigrants And a thousand bags o' male."

6. Badluck to thim Irish sailor boys,
Bad luck to thim I say.
For they all got drunk, and broke into me bunk
And stole me clo'es away.
//

[DRUNKEN SAILOR] for "windlass and capstan." As in 1920, with added verses.
//
14. What shall we do with the drunken sailor?

This fine tune—in the first Mode—was always a great favourite. Although mostly used for windlass or capstan, Sir Walter Runciman tells me that he frequently sang to it for 'hand-over-hand' hauling. …It is one of the few shanties that were sung in quick time.

1. What shall we do with the drunken sailor,

What shall we do with the drunken sailor,

What shall we do with the drunken sailor

Early in the morning?

Hooray and up she rises,

Hooray and up she rises,

Hooray and up she rises

Early in the morning.


2. Put him in the long-boat until he's sober. (thrice)


3. Pull out the plug änd wet him all over. (thrice)


4. Put him in the scuppers with a hose-pipe on him. (thrice)


5. Heave him by the leg in a running bowlin'. (thrice)


6. Tie him to the taffrail when she's yard-arm under. (thrice)
//


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 15 Jul 11 - 10:26 PM

[[Halliard Shanties]]

[BLOW BOYS BLOW]
//
15. Blow, my bully boys


1. A Yankee ship came down the river,

Blow, boys blow.

Her masts and yards they shine like silver.

Blow my bully boys blow.


2. And how d'ye know she's a Yankee packet?

The Stars and Stripes they fly above her.



3. And who d'ye think was skipper of her. (twice)



4. 'Twas Dandy Jim, the one-eyed nigger;
'Twas Dandy Jim, with his bully figure.



5. And what d'ye think they had for dinner?

Why bullock's lights and donkey's liver.



6. And what d'ye think they had for supper?

Why weevilled bread and Yankee leather.



7. Then blow my boys, and blow together.

And blow my boys for better weather.



8. A Yankee ship came down the river.

Her masts and yards they shine like silver.
//

[BLOW THE MAN DOWN]
//
16. Blow the man down

This is the shanty which is perhaps the best known among landsmen. 'Winchester Street' is in South Shields, and in the old days was the aristocratic quarter where only persons of high distinction—such as shipowners, and 'Southspainer' skippers—lived.

1. Oh blow the man down, bullies, blow the man down.

To me Way-ay, blow the man down.

Oh blow the man down, bullies, blow him away.

Oh gimme some time to blow the man down.

2. We went over the Bar on the thirteenth of May.

The Galloper jumped, and the gale came away.


3. Oh the rags they was gone, and the chains they was jammed,
And the skipper sez he, "Let the weather be hanged [damned]."



4. Äs I was a-walking down Winchester Street,

A saucy young damsel I happened to meet.



5. Ï sez to her, "Polly, and how d'you do?"

Sez she, "None the better for seein' of you."



6. Oh, it's sailors is tinkers, and tailors is men.
And we're all of us coming to see you again.



7. So we'll blow the man up, and we'll blow the man down.
And we'll blow him away into Liverpool Town.
//

[CHEERLY] Chopinesque!
//
17. Cheer'ly, men

This particular version was sung to me by Capt. R.W. Robertson. It differs but slightly from the version which I originally learnt from Sir Walter Runciman. Very few of the words were printable, and old sailors who read my version will no doubt chuckle over the somewhat pointless continuation of the verses concerning Kitty Carson and Polly Riddle. They will, of course, see the point of my having supplied a Chopinesque accompaniment to such a shanty.

1. Oh, Nancy Dawson, I-Oh.

Chee-lee men.

She robb'd the Bo'sun, I-Oh.

Chee-lee men.

That was a caution, I-Oh.

Chee-lee men.

Oh Hauly, I-Oh,

Chee-lee men.

2. Oh Sally Racket. I-Oh,
Pawned my best jacket. I-Oh,
Sold the pawn ticket. I-Oh, &c.



3. Oh Kitty Carson

Jilted the parson,

Married a mason.



4. Oh Betsy Baker

Lived in Long Acre,

Married a quaker.



5. Oh Jenny Walker

Married a hawker

That was a corker.



6. Oh Polly Riddle

Broke her new fiddle.

Right through the middle.
//


[GOOD MORNING LADIES ALL] As in 1920, with additional lyrics.
//
18. Good morning, ladies all

The title belongs to other shanties as well; but, so far as I know, this tune has never been printed until now. I learnt it from Northumbrian sailors when a very small boy, and have never heard of its use in any other than Blyth and Tyne ships. It may be a Northumbrian air, but from such knowledge as I have gleaned of Northumbrian folk-tunes, I incline to the conjecture that it may have been picked up in more southern latitudes by some Northumbrian seaman.

1. Now a long good-bye to you, my dear,

With a heave-oh haul.

And a last farewell, and a long farewell.

And good morning, ladies all.

2. For we're outward böund to New York town;

And you'll wave to us till the sun goes down.


3. Änd when we get to New York town,

Oh it's there we'll drink, and sorrows drown.



4. When we're back once möre in London Docks,

All the pretty girls will come in flocks.



5. Änd Poll, and Bet, and Sue will say:

"Oh it's here comes Jack with his three years' pay."



6. So a long good-bye to you, my dear,

And a last farewell, and a long farewell.
//

[HANGING JOHNNY]
//
19. Hanging Johnny

This cheery riot of gore is wedded to the most plaintive of tunes, and is immortalized by Masefield in his 'Sailor's Garland.' Nowadays one occasionally meets unhumorous longshore sailormen who endeavour to temper its fury to the shorn landsman by palming off a final verse, which gives one to understand that the previous stanzas have been only 'Johnny's' little fun, and which makes him bleat:
'They said I hanged for money,
But I never hanged nobody.'

I also possess a shanty collection where the words have so clearly shocked the editor that he has composed an entirely fresh set. These exhibit 'Johnny' as a spotless moralist, who would never really hang his parents, but would only operate (in a Pickwickian sense of course) on naughty and unworthy people:
'I'd hang a noted liar,
I'd hang a bloated friar.

'I'd hang a brutal mother,
I'd hang her and no other.

'I'd hang to make things jolly,
I'd hang all wrong and folly.'

Imagine a shantyman (farceur as he ever was) making for edification in that style!

1. Oh they call me hanging Johnny.

Away, boys, away.

They says I hangs for money.

Oh hang, boys, hang.

2. Änd first I hanged my daddy. (twice)



3. Änd then I hanged my mother,


My sister and my brother.



4. Änd then I hanged my granny. (twice)



5. Änd then I hanged my Annie;

I hanged her up see canny. 



6. Wë'll hang and haul together;

We'll haul for better weather.
//

[HILO BOYS]
//
20. Hilo Somebody

This is another of the shanties I learnt as a boy from Blyth sailors, and which has never been printed before. I fancy that 'blackbird' and 'crew' must be a perversion of 'blackbird and crow,' as the latter figure of speech occurs in other shanties.

1. The blackbird sang unto our crew.

Hilo boys, Hilo.

The blackbird sang unto our crew.

Oh Hilo somebody, Hilo.

2. The blackbird sang so sweet to me. (twice)



3. We sailed away to Mobile Bay. (twice)



4. And now we're bound for London Town. (twice)



5. The up aloft this yard must go. (twice)



6. I thought I heard the old man say:—

"Just one more pull, and then belay."



7. Hooray my boys, we're homeward bound. (twice)



8. The blackbird sang unto our crew. (twice)
//

[RUN LET THE BULGINE RUN]
//
21. Oh run, let the Bullgine run

The reference to the 'Bullgine' seems to suggest Transatlantic origin. There were endless verses, but no attempt at narrative beyond a recital of the names of places from which and to which they were 'running.' This version was sung to me by Mr. F.B. Mayoss, a seaman who sailed in the old China Clippers.

1. Oh we'll run all night till the morning.

Oh run, let the Bullgine run.

Way-yah, Oh-I-Oh,
run, let the Bullgine run.
2. Oh we sailed all day tö Mobile Bay.



3. Oh we sailed all nïght äcross the Bight.

4. Oh we'll run from Dover to Cällis.



5. Öh drive her captäin, drïve her.



6. Öh captain make her nöse blood.



7. She's a dandy packet and a flier too.



8. With a dandy skipper, and a dandy crew.



9. Oh we'll run all nïght till the mörning.
//

[REUBEN RANZO] Alden's (1882) version is part of the composite. Adds verses to 1920 article version.
//
22. Reuben Ranzo

Alden gives this version, and I fancy it may have once been fairly general, as several of my relatives used to sing it. The version I mostly heard from other sailors, however, began:… [melodic phrase variant – same as the one in his 1920 article]
But from Mr. Morley Roberts I had the following:… [melodic phrase variant]
Capt. Robertson's version ran thus:… [melodic phrase variant]

I think he[Whall] is right about the absence of improvization on extraneous topics, but I used to hear a good deal of improvization on the subject of Ranzo himself. I knew at least three endings of the story: (1) where the captain took him into the cabin, 'larned him navigation,' and eventually married him to his daughter; (2) where Ranzo's hatred of ablutions caused the indignant crew to throw him overboard; (3) where the story ended with the lashes received, not for his dirty habits, but for a theft:
'We gave him lashes thirty
For stealin' the captain's turkey.'

I have also heard many extemporaneous verses relating his adventures among the denizens of the deep after he was thrown overboard.

1. Oh poor old Reuben Ranzo,

Oh Ranzo boys, Ranzo.

Ah pity poor Reuben Ranzo.

Ranzo boys, Ranzo.

2. Oh Ranzo was no sailor

He shipped on board a whaler.



3. Old Ranzo couldn't steer her,
Did you ever hear anything queerer?



4. Oh Ranzo was no beauty
Why couldn't he do his duty?


5. Oh Ranzo washed once a fortnight

He said it was his birthright.


6. They triced up this man so dirty

And gave him five and thirty. 


7. Oh poor old Reuben Ranzo
Ah pity poor Reuben Ranzo.
//

[DEAD HORSE]
//
23. The dead horse

This shanty was used both for hauling and for pumping ship. It seems to have had its origin in a rite which took place after the crew had 'worked off the dead horse.' The circumstances were these: Before any voyage, the crew received a month's pay in advance, which, needless to say, was spent ashore before the vessel sailed. Jack's first month on sea was therefore spent in clearing off his advance, which he called working off the dead horse. The end of that payless period was celebrated with a solemn ceremony: a mass of straw, or whatever other combustibles were to hand, was made up into a big bundle, which sometimes did, and more often did not, resemble a horse. This was dragged round the deck by all hands, the shanty being sung meanwhile. The perambulation completed, the dead horse was lighted and hauled up, usually to the main-yardarm, and when the flames had got a good hold, the rope was cut and the blazing mass fell into the sea, amid shouts of jubilation.

1. A poor old man came riding by.

And they say so, and they hope so.

A poor old man came riding by.

Oh poor old man.

2. I said "Old man your hoss will die." (twice)



3. And if he dies I'll tan his skin. (twice)



4. And if he lives you'll ride again. (twice)



5. I thought I heard the skipper say. (twice)



6. Oh one more pull and then belay. (twice)



7. A poor old man came riding by. (twice)
//

[TOMMY'S GONE]
//
24. Tom's gone to Hilo

…I have chosen the version sung to me by Mr. George Vickers, although in the first chorus it differs somewhat from the version I learnt as a boy:…
I give Mr. Vickers's verses about 'The Victory' and 'Trafalgar,' as I had never heard them sung by any other seaman. I have omitted the endless couplets containing the names of places to which Tommy is supposed to have travelled.

1. Tommy's gone and I'll go too,

Away down Hilo.

Oh, Tommy's gone and I'll go too.

Tom's gone to Hilo.

2. Tommy's gone to Liverpool,


3. Tommy's gone to Mobile Bay.



4. Tommy's gone, what shall I do?


5. Tommy fought at Tráfalgár.

6. The old Victory led the way.
The brave old Victory led the way.


7. Tommy's gone for evermore.

Oh, Tommy's gone for evermore.
//

[WHISKEY JOHNNY]
//
25. Whisky Johnny

1. Oh whisky is the life of man.

Whiskey Johnny.

Oh whisky is the life of man.

Whisky for my Johnny.

2. Oh whisky makes me pawn my clothes.

And whisky gave me this red nose.



3. Oh whisky killed my poor old dad.

And whisky druv my mother mad.



4. Oh whisky up, and whisky down.

And whisky all around the town.



5. Oh whisky here and whisky there.

It's I'll have whisky everywhere.



6. Oh whisky is the life of man.

It's whisky in an old tin can.
//

[BONEY]
//
26. Boney was a warrior

I never met a seaman who has not hoisted topsails to this shanty…

1. Boney was a warrior.

Way-ay Yah.

Boney was a warrior.

John France-Wah.

2. Boney beat the Rooshians. (twice)



3. Boney beat the Prooshians. (twice)



4. Boney went to Möscow. (twice)



5. Moscow was a-fïre. (twice)



6. Boney he came back again. (twice)



7. Boney went to Elbow. (twice)



8. Boney went to Waterloo. (twice)



9. Boney was defeated. (twice)



10. Boney was a prisoner

'Board the Billy Ruffian. 


11. Boney he was sent away,

'Way to St. Helena.



12. Boney broke his heart, and died. (twice)



13. Boney was a warrior. (twice)
//

[[Fore-Sheet or Sweating-up Shanties:]]

[JOHNNY BOWKER] fore-sheet
//
27. Johnny Boker

This popular shanty was sometimes used for bunting-up a sail, but more usually for 'sweating-up.' Although I have allowed the last note its full musical value, it was not prolonged in this manner aboard ship. As it coincided with the pull, it usually sounded more like a staccato grunt.

1. Oh do my Johnny Boker,
Come rock and roll me over.

Do my Johnny Boker, do.

2. Oh do my Johnny Boker,
The skipper is a rover.

Do my Johnny, &c.



3.Oh do, &c.
The mate he's never sober.
Do my, &c.



4.Oh do, &c.
The Bo'sun is a tailor.
Do my, &c.



5.Oh do, &c. We'll all go on a jamboree.
Do my, &c.



6.Oh do, &c.
The Packet is a Rollin'.
Do my, &c.



7.Oh do, &c.
We'll pull and haul together.
Do my, &c.



8.Oh do, &c.
We'll haul for better weather.
Do my, &c.



9.Oh do, &c. And soon we'll be in London Town.
Do my, &c.



10.Oh do, &c.
Come rock and roll me over.
Do my, &c.
//

[HAUL AWAY JOE] fore-sheet. As in 1920 article, with added verses.
//
28. Haul away, Joe

The major version of this shanty (which appears in Part II) was more general in the last days of the sailing ship; but this minor version (certainly the most beautiful of them) is the one which I used to hear on the Tyne. The oldest of my sailor relatives never sang any other. This inclines me to the belief that it is the earlier version. The verses extemporized to this shanty were endless, but those concerning the Nigger Girl and King Louis never seem to have been omitted.

1. Way, haul away, We'll haul away the bowlin'.

Way, haul away, Haul away Joe.

2. Way haul away. The packet is a-rollin'.



3. Way haul away. We'll hang and haul together.



4. Way haul away. We'll haul for better weather.


5. Once I had a nigger girl, and she was fat and lazy.


6. Then I had a Spanish girl, she nearly druv me crazy.


7. Geordie Charlton had a pig, and it was double jointed.


8. He took it to the blacksmith's shop to get its trotters pointed.


9. King Louis was the king o' France before the Revolution.


10. King Louis got his head cut off, and spoiled his Constitution.



11. Oh when I was a little boy and so my mother told me.



12. That if I didn't kiss the girls my lips would all go mouldy.



13. Oh once I had a scolding wife, she wasn't very civil.



14. I clapped a plaster on her mouth and sent her to the divvle.
//

[BOWLINE] fore-sheet. As in 1920, with added verses.
//
29. We'll haul the bowlin'

This was the most popular shanty for 'sweating-up.' There are many variants of it. The present version I learnt from Capt. John Runciman. In this shanty no attempt was ever made to sing the last word. It was always shouted.

1. We'll haul the bowlin' so early in the morning.

We'll haul the bowlin', the bowlin' haul!

2. We'll haul the bowlin' for Kitty is my darlin'.



3. We'll haul the bowlin'; the fore-to-gallant bowlin'.



4. We'll haul the bowlin', the skipper is a growlin'.



5. We'll haul the bowlin', the packet is a rollin'.


6. We'll haul the bowlin' so early in the morning.
//

[[Bunty Shanty:]]

[PADDY DOYLE]
//
30. Paddy Doyle's boots. As in 1920. A composite.

This shanty differs from all others, as (a) it was sung tutti throughout; (b) it had only one verse, which was sung over and over again; and (c) it was used for one operation and one operation only, viz. bunting up the foresail or mainsail in furling. In this operation the canvas of the sail was folded intensively until it formed a smooth conical bundle. This was called a bunt, and a strong collective effort (at the word 'boots') was required to get it on to the yard.
Although the same verse was sung over and over again, very occasionally a different text would be substituted, which was treated in the same manner. Capt. Whall gives two alternatives, which were sometimes used:
'We'll all drink brandy and gin,'
and—
'We'll all shave under the chin.'
Mr. Morley Roberts also told me that a variant in his ship was—
'We'll all throw dirt at the cook.'

1.        To my way-ay-ay-ah,

2.        We'll pay Paddy Doyle for his boots.
Alternative verses.
2. We'll all throw dirt at the cook.


3. We'll all drink brandy and gin.
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Charley Noble
Date: 16 Jul 11 - 09:39 AM

Lighter was musing above whether any other Bullen's shanties had been recorded. Barry Finn and Neil Downey (Finn & Haddie) recorded a spirited rendition of the shanty version of "Coal Black Rose" on Fathom This!, © 2007. "Coal Black Rose" has been traced back to a popular minstrel song of the same name and shares a verse or two. Neil (in the CD track notes) derived his version from "Tommy O'Sullivan while recording at sea on the Unicorn in the early 80's."

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 16 Jul 11 - 10:44 AM

Thanks, Charley.


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 16 Jul 11 - 03:55 PM

Whether he meant it or not (hi, Jon!), the key part of Lighter's observation for me is that Bullen's collection has generally been neglected as a source for performers. Tom Sullivan's interpretation, from the _Salt Atlantic Chanties_ album, was based in *Hugill's* "Coal Black Rose."

And this is something to wonder -- why Bullen was ignored. It's clear why Hugill's was popular in later years. But why was Bullen less-used in earlier years? Poor distribution? Unattractive presentation? My guess, in addition to those, is that Sharp's name had pull with the folklore-oriented people, and Terry had pull with the conservatory musician people. But while they both had some disagreements with, or complained about aspects of Bullen's work, Sharp and Terry's own works were informed by Bullen. As was Hugill's.

I am trying to imagine what Hugill's work would have been like without earlier models. Although presumably he still could have given, say, his "Coal Black Rose" learned from Harding, I imagine that earlier authors' versions refreshed his memories!


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 16 Jul 11 - 04:05 PM

Gibb, another reason what Bullen was ignored, I think, is that he only gave one or two stanzas per song. Nobody wants to sing just one or two stanzas! Furthermore, he emphasized the African-American side of the subject, which may have lessened the interest for white singers and musicians of the period.

Exactly why shanties have been so generally shunned by African-Americans (and African-Britons) is another minor cultural mystery.


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 16 Jul 11 - 05:13 PM

Lighter,

The reasons you suggest are interesting. The first suggests that his work simply was not as useful/practical. The second suggests a possible bias.

I was thinking more along the lines of Bullen being *ignored* or unread in the first place, not being reviewed and then rejected.

Your idea about the 1-2 stanzas makes a lot of sense to me. Funny that Bullen gave piano accompaniment, as if the songs were meant to be performed, and yet did not give enough verses to perform! It's highly doubtable that the score-reading conservatory musicians would actually go through with improvising verses, as Bullen suggested! His work shows a horrible clash between two worlds. I think he knew and "understood" chanties as well or as or better than any of the authors on the subject. What to do then, when the conventions of his time compelled him to present them in such a format that was at odds with essential aspects of the genre?

Your second idea is quite profound, especially in terms of some of the discussion that have gone on in this thread. My opinion is that what Bullen said about shanty origins, while less attract-ing, would not necessarily have put off readers. However, I really can't know that. The more interesting question that it does raise is whether *in general* people (readers, not scholars in this case) would have been put off by Black cultural associations, affecting a turn away from that direction, or if those associations were ignored or over-written due to emphasis (and some manufacturing) of strong English cultural associations. In other words, if, as I believe to be true, there was a shift to favoring English "origins", etc., was it because the writers that had the dominant voice were saying that, and their voices came across more loudly? Or were other voices, saying different things, actively rejected. It could have been both. But I lean towards the former. Where the latter happened, I think, was at the level of writing (not reading). Audiences have seemed more open to accept whatever is presented.

All just opinions, and maybe not very clear at that!


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Charley Noble
Date: 16 Jul 11 - 10:13 PM

Having read one of Bullen's semi-autobiographical books I would certainly go along with the idea that he thoroughly understood the world of the tall ship sailor. No doubt it was a struggle at the time to find a way to get a book of sailor work songs published, and it's still a struggle!

Oh, here's the lyrics to Neil Downey's recorded version of "Coal Black Rose":

O, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose,
Don't ye hear the banjo
Ping-a-pong-a-pong?
On, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose!

O, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose,
Up aloft
This yard must go!
On, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose!

O, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose,
Strung up like a banjo,
Taut an' long,
On, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose!

O, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose,
The yard is now a-movin',
Hauley-hauley, ho!
On, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose!

O, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose,
The Mate he comes around, boys,
Dinging an' a dang!
On, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose!

O, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose,
Back in to it, boys,
Rock an' roll 'er high!
On, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose!

O, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose,
One more pull, boys,
Rock an' roll 'er high!
On, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose!

O, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose,
Don't ye hear the banjo
Ping-a-pong-a-pong?
On, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose!

O, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose,
Skipper's on the beach
An' he can't get none!
On, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose!

O, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose,
Up aloft
This yard must go!
On, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose!

O, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose,
One more pull,
An' then belay!
On, me Rosie, Coal Black Rose!!!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 27 Jul 11 - 11:52 PM

In the next few posts I am going to dissect Doerflinger's collection. He has it organized by working-task -- something that, while popular for a while with writers, is not that useful. Like Sharp and Terry and several predecessors, he also followed the practice -- frustrating for my purposes -- of putting notes separate, in the appendix. The goal is, to some extent, to present the items as a collection of songs to enjoy. So much of his notes that accompany the scores are somewhat vague and unsupported. In almost all cases, I think his comments are quite reasonable, and I'm sure they are supported at least by what he has read. But, at this stage in the game (this stage of chanty-writing) most of his commentary IMO is not very interesting. It is an accumulation or repetition of prior knowledge. The specific notes on specific songs are interesting to see how ideas were shaped about them *individually*, but for general purposes, the notes don't add much. So, I'm trimming most of the notes except for ones attributed to informants.

And, I am rearranging the presentation in terms of his sources.

1951        Doerflinger, William Main. _Shantymen and Shantyboys: Songs of the Sailor and Lumberman_. Macmillan: New York.

I'm going off the original version. I haven't compared the revised version of 1970, which I assume only adds comments in light of more recent works like Hugill's, but which does not affect the collected raw material. I don't have my copy of the revised around, so I haven't compared it.

General comments.

Preface dated March 1950.
Songs gathered in New York, Nova Scotia, 30s and early 40s.

Omitted some verses unsuitable for printing. However, he didn't *change* anything, rather it was all transcribed meticulously, with individuals variation given. That's what makes his distinct from almost every other chanty collection.

Had editors to transcribe the music that he'd recorded.
Mary Elizabeth Barnicle made available some recordings of Dick Maitland Also consulted J. Colcord.

On vocal style, notes.

…high breaks, or "hitches," as Captain Tayluer called them……shrill breaks in the voice on one or two notes in each stanza.

I think this is the first time such ornaments were called (in print) "hitches." Something that Hugill would follow up on.

Speaks of "a revival in shantying." The ermergence of shanties circa 1830s was, in his view, a RE-emergence.

Says the white sailors brought shanties with them to cotton ports, and then left with Negro songs. This would become Hugill's "shanty mart" idea.


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 27 Jul 11 - 11:58 PM

Doerflinger consulted the manuscript collection of James H. Williams. All of these items appeared in Williams' 1909 article in The Independent, which we've already discussed.

Haul Away, Joe (II) [HAUL AWAY JOE]
Boney (II) [BONEY]
Whiskey, Johnny (II) [WHISKEY JOHNNY]
Blow the Man Down (II) [BLOW THE MAN DOWN]
Blow, Boys, Blow (II) [BLOW BOYS BLOW]
A Long Time Ago (II) [LONG TIME AGO]


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 28 Jul 11 - 12:13 AM

From manuscript of Nathaniel Silsbee of Cohasset, Mass. Silsbee learned chanties (if I may generalize) at sea in 1880s, set them down in 1893. Melodies were taken down from his singing by Mrs. George C. Beach.

[DAMERAY]
//
John Dameray

Manuscript indicates "braces".

Aloft we all must go-oh,
John come down the backstay
In hail and frost and snow-oh,
John come down the backstay,
John Dameray!

John Dameray - John come down the backstay
John Dameray - John come down the backstay
John Dameray! [all twice]

My ma she wrote to me,
"My son, come home from sea."

Got no monay and no clo'es,
Am knocking out of doors.

My home I soon will be in,
And then we'll have some gin.

From sea I will keep clear,
And live by selling beer.
//

[BUNCH OF ROSES]
//
Come Down, You Bunch of Roses, Come Down

Oh, yes, my lads, we'll roll a-lee,
[Come down, you bunch of roses, come down,]
We'll soon be far away from sea,
[Come down, you bunch of roses, come down.]

Oh, you pinks and poses,
Come down, you bunch of roses, come down.
Oh, you pinks and poses,
Come down, you bunch of roses, come down.

Oh, what do yer s'pose we had for supper?
Black-eyed beans and bread and butter.

Oh Poll's in the garden picking peas.
She's got fine hair way down to her knees.

I went downstairs and peeked throug a crack,
And saw her staling a kiss from Jack.

I grabbed right hold of a piece of plank
and ran out quick and gave her a spank.
//

Notes also that Silsbee's collection has a variant of [GIMME DE BANJO] called "Banjyee".

***

Found in a journal of the 1860s, kept at sea by Capt. James A. Delap of Nova Scotia.

[LOWLANDS AWAY]
//
Lowlands (III)

A bully ship and bully crew,
Lowlands, lowlands, hurrah, my John,
And a bully mate to put us through,
My dollar and a half a day.

I wish I was in Liverpool,
With the Liverpool girls I would slip round.

Oh, heave her up and away we'll go
Oh, heave her up from down below.

Oh, a dollar and a half is a shellback's pay,
But a dollar and a half is pretty good pay.

Oh, rise, old woman, and let us in,
For the night is cold and I want some gin.
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 28 Jul 11 - 01:02 AM

Richard Maitland (1857, NY-1942). Went to sea at 12 (circa 1869/70) as a trainee in NY schoolship MERCURY for 2 years, at which time interest in shanties began. Art of shantying was at its peak then, and older sailors took pains to teach the boys. Frisco, Liverpool, Hong Kong voyages, in American and Bluenose ships.

Doerflinger recorded him at Sailors' Snug Harbor, Staten Island. If I counted correctly, this represents a repertoire of 32 chanties.

[HAUL AWAY JOE] Hauling aft the foresheet. Dorian mode.
//
Haul Away, Joe (I)

Away, haul away, rock and roll me over,
Away, haul away, haul away Joe! (or pull!)

Away, haul away, roll me in the clover,
Away, haul away, haul away Joe! (or pull!)

[Etc, around the corner Sally, Saccarappa sailors, turf and praties, Irish gal, German girl, Yankee gal/ break or bend, haul away for roses, haul together, better weather]
//

[BONEY]
//
Boney (I) (Jean François)

Boney was a warrior
Way-ay-yah,
A reg'lar bull and tarrier,
John François!

He beat the Austrians and Rooshians,
The Portugees and Prooshians.

Boney went to school in France,
He learned to make the Prooshians dance.

[etc]
//

[JOHNNY BOWKER]
//
Johnny Boker

Do, my Johnny Boker, we'll bust or break or bend her;
Do, my Johnny Boker, do!

Oh, do, my Johnny Boker; get around the corner Sally!
//

[BOWLINE]
//
Haul on the Bowline

Haul on the bowline, the long-tailed bowline,
Haul the bowline, the bowline haul!

[Etc. bully ship's a-rollin', kitty me darlin', old man growlin']
//

[PADDY DOYLE]
//
Paddy Doyle

Way ah, we'll pay Paddy Doyle for his boots!

Who stole poor Paddy Doyl's boots?

We'll bowse her up and be done!
//

[HANDY MY BOYS]
//
So Handy

Handy high and handy low,
[Handy me boys, so handy]
Oh, it's handy haigh and away we'll go,
[Handy, me boys, so handy!]

You've got your advance and to sea you must go
A-round Cape Horn through frost and snow

Growl you may, but go you must.
Just growl too much and your head they'll bust

Now, up aloft from down below,
Up aloft that yard must go.

Now, one more pull and we'll show her clew!
Oh, we're the boys that'll put her thourgh,

With a bully ship and a bully crew,
And a bully Old Man to drive her through!

We're bound away around Cape Horn,
And we'll get there as sure as you're born!

Now one more pull and that will do!
Oh, We're the gang that'll shove her through.

Now, here we are at sea again;
Two months' advance we're up against.

We're the gang that can do it again!
Oh, we're the boys that'll do it once more.
//

[DEAD HORSE]
//
Poor Old Man

As I walked out up-on the road one day,
[For they say so, and they know so,]
I saw 'n old man with a load of hay,
[Oh, poor old man!]

Says I, old man, your horse is lame,
Says I, Old man that horse will die

Now if he dies he'll be my loss
And if he lives he'll be my horse.

And if he dies I'll tan his skin
If he live I'll ride him again

Round Cape Horn through frost and snow,
Round Cape Horn I had to go.

Growl you may, but go you must
If you growl too loud your head they'll bust.
//

[BLOW THE MAN DOWN]
//
Blow the Man Down (III)

Oh, blow the man down, Johnny, Blow him right down, 

To me way - ay, blow the man down, 

Aw, blow the man down for a half a crown, 

Gimme some time to blow the man down! 



As I was a-walking on Paradise Street, 


A sassy policeman I chanced for to meet,



Says he, "You're a Yank by the cut of your hair, 

And you've robbed some poor Dutchman of the clothes that you wear." 



"Oh no, Mister Policeman, I know you are wrong! 

I'm a deep-water sailor just home from Hong Kong."
//

[REUBEN RANZO]
//
Reuben Ranzo (I)

Oh, poor old Reuben Ranzo,
[Ranzo boys, Ranzo!]
Oh Ranzo was no sailor
[Ranzo, boys, Ranzo!]

But he was a Boston tailor,
He went on a visit to New Bedford.

He was shanghaied on a whaler
He could not do his duty.

So they put him to holystoning,
They took him to the gangway,

They tied him on the grating,
And they gave him five and forty.

The captain's youngest daughter
Begged her father for mercy.

The captain loved his daughter,
And he heeded her cries for mercy.

He put Ranzo in the cabin,
And taught him navigation.

Ranzo married his daughter,
And now he's skipper of a whaler,

And he's got a little Ranzo!
And he's got a little Ranzo!
//

[TOMMY'S GONE]
//
Tommy's Gone To Hilo

From the nitrate trade around Cape Horn to the West Coast of South America came "Tommy's Gone to Hilo" (pronounced "high-lo"). Ilo, as the inhabitants call it, is the port in southern Peru. The name of any port could be worked into Tommy's travels by a resourceful shantyman.

1. My Tommy's gone, what shall I do?
Away, Hilo!
My Tommy's gone, what shall I do?
Tommy's gone to Hilo!

2. My Tommy's gone to Liverpool,
My Tommy's gone to Liverpool,

3. Now, Tommy's gone and I'll go too,
My Tommy's gone and I'll go too.

4. Now, pull away and show her clew.
We'll h'ist her up and show her clew.

5. One more pull and that will do.

6. Tommy's gone to Baltimore
And where they carry the cotton shore.

7. Now, pull away, my bully boys,
Oh, pull away and make some noise.

8. Now, Tommy's gone to Mobile Bay.
Tommy's gone to Mobile Bay.

9. A-screwing cotton by the day.

10. My Tommy's gone, they sat to Bombay.
Tommy's gone, they say to Bombay.
//

[HANGING JOHNNY]
//
Hanging Johnny

Now they call me Hanging Johnny
[Away, ay-ay,]
Oh, they say I hang for money,
[Hang, boys, hang!]

They say I hung my daddy
[Hooway-ay hay hay!]
Oh they say I've hung my mam-my,
[Hang, boys, hang!]

I hung my sister Sally,
Now they say I 've hung the fam'ly

Oh, we'll hand , and hang together,
And we'll hang for better weather.

Now, get around the corner Sally
Oh, we'll make you, Saccarappa!
//

[HUCKLEBERRY HUNTING]
//
Huckleberry Hunting

Now, the boys and the girls went out huckleberry hunting,
To me Hilo, me Ranzo boy!
Oh, the girls, they fell down down and the boys they ran after them,
To me Hilo, me Ranzo boy!

One little boy he says to his beau, "I saw your little garter,"
To me Hilo, me Ranzo boy!
"If you'll take me for your beau, I'll be with you ever after,"
To me Hilo, me Ranzo boy!
//

[ROLL THE COTTON DOWN] Supposedly to the tune of 'A Long time Ago'
//
Roll the Cotton Down (II)

Down in Alabama I was born,
[Roll the cotton down;]
Way down in Alabama I was born,
[And I rolled the cotton down.]

When I was young and in my prime;
[Oh, roll the cotton down;]
I thought I'd go and join the Line
[And roll the cotton down]

And as a sailor caught a shine;
[roll the cotton down]
I shipped on board of the Black Ball Line;
[and roll the cotton down]

Now the Black Ball Line is the line for me;
[roll the cotton down]
That's when you want to go on a spree
[And roll the cotton down]

In the Black Ball Line you can cut a big shine;
[oh, roll the cotton down:]
For there you'll wake at any old time,
[And roll the cotton down]

Now see the Black baller prepareing for sea;
[then roll the cotton down]
You'll split your side luaghing, the sights to see,
[and roll the cotton down]

There's tinkers and tailors, shoemakers and all,
[Roll the cotton down]
They're all shanghaied on board the Black Ball
[And roll the cotton down]

[ROLL THE COTTON DOWN]
//
Roll the Cotton Down (III)

Way down South where I was born
[Roll the cotton down:]
I worked in the cotton and the corn,
[Oh, roll the cotton down.]

When I was young and in my prime,
I thought I'd go and join the Line,

And for a sailor caught a shine,
I joined on a ship of the Swallowtail Line.
//

[ROLL ALABAMA]
//
The Alabama (I)

When the Alabama's keel was laid
[Roll, Alabama, Roll!]
They laid her keel in Birkenhead,
[Oh, Roll, Alabama, Roll!]

Oh, she was built at Birkenhead,
she was built in the yard of Jonathan Laird.

And down the Mersey she rolled away,
And Britain supplied her with men and guns

And she sailed away in search of a prize,
And when she came to the port of Cherbourg,

It was there she met with the little Kearsarge.
It was there she met the Kearsarge.

It was off Cherbourg harbor in April, '65,
That the Alabama went to a timely grave.
//

[ROLL ALABAMA] Maitland learned it on the schoolship MERCURY in 1870 or 71. Sung at pumps AND halyards.
//
The Alabama (II)

In eighteen hundred and sixty-one,
[Roll Alabama, roll!]
The Alabama's keel was laid,
[And roll, Alabama, roll!]

Twas laid in the yard of Jonathan Laird
At the town of Birkenhead

At first she was called the 'Two Ninety two'
For the merchants of the city of Liverpool

Put up the money to build the ship,
In the hopes of driving the commerce from the sea.

Down the Mersey she sailed one day
To the port of Fayal in the Western Isles.

There she refitted with men and guns,
and sailed across the Western Sea,

With orders to sink, burn and destroy
all ships belonging to the North.

Till one day in the harbor of Cherbourg she laid,
And the little Kearsarge was waiting there.

And the Kearsarge with Winslow was waiting there,
And Winslow challenged them to fight at sea.

Outside the three mile limit they fought (repeat)

Till a shot from the forward pivot that day
Took the Alabama's steering gear away

And at the Kearsarge's mercy she lay
And Semmes escaped on a British yacht.
//

[LONG TIME AGO]
//
A Long Time Ago (III)

When I was young and in my prime,
[To me way-ay-ay yah,]
I thought I'd go and join the line,
[Oh, a long time ago.]

And as a sailor caught a shine
In a lot they called the Black Ball Line

Now come all you young fellers that's going to sea,
And just listen a while unto me.

I'll sing you a song and I won't keep you long.
It's all about the Black Ball Line

Just see the Black Ballers preparing for sea
You'd split your sides laughing the sights you would see

there's tinkers 'n' tailors, shoemakers 'n' all,
For they're all shipped as sailors on board a Black Ball.

Now, one more pull and we'll let her go
We'll h'ist her up through frost and snow

Just one more pull and we'll show her clew,
And another long pull and that will do.

additional verses:

Around Cape Horn you've got to go;
That's the way to Callao.

In the Black Ball Line I served my time
I sailed in the Webb of the Black Ball Line.
//

[SHALLOW BROWN] Maitland said it was "mainly a Negro shanty." Useful when there's only half dozen pulls. Generally used, "for bowsing down tacks and hauling aft sheets."
//
Shallo Brown

Shallo Brown, now what's the matter?
[Shallo, Shallo Brown!]
Oh, Shallo Brown, what's the matter?
[Shallo, Shallo Brown!]

I'm going to leave you
[Shallo Brown]
Oh, I have left the wife and baby
[Shallo, Shallo Brown!]

The baby's in the cradle,
[Shallo, Shallo Brown.]
(Lines missing)

additonal verses

The packet sails tomorrow,
I'm leaving you in sorrow

And the baby in the cradle.
My love I won't decieve you!
//

[DRUNKEN SAILOR]
//
The Drunken Sailot, or, Early in the Morning

Oh, what shall we do with a drunken sailor…
Early in the morning?

Put him in the longboat till he gets sober,…

Way, hay, and up she rises,
//

[ROLL THE OLD CHARIOT ALONG]
//
We'll Roll the Golden Chariot Along

We'll roll the golden chariot along X3
[cho.] And we'll all hang on behind!

If the devil's in the road we'll roll it over him,

As given by 1927 Wood, Thomas. The Oxford Song Book, II. Oxford University Press.:

[cho.] Roll the old chariot along x3
And we'll all hang on behind

A plate of hot scouse wouldn't do us any harm x2
It would roll, roll, roll the old chariot along

A new plum duff wouldn't do us any harm,

A glass of whiskey hot wouldn't do us any harm, etc.
//

[PADDY LAY BACK]
//
Paddy, Get Back

I was broke and out of a job in the city of London.

I went down the Shadwell Docks to get a ship.
Paddy get back. Take in the slack!

Heave away your capstan, heave a pawl, heave a pawl!

'Bout ship and stations, there, be handy,

Rise tacks 'n' sheets, 'n' mains'l haul!
There was a Yankee ship a-laying in the basin.

Shipping master told me she was going to New York.
If I ever get my hands on that shipping master,

I will murder him if it's the last thing that I do!
When the pilot left the ship, the captain told us

We were bound around Cape Horn to Callao!
And he said that she was hot and still a-heating,

And the best thing we could do was watch our step.
Now the mate and second mate belonged to Boston,

And the captain b'longed in Bangor down in Maine.
The three of them were rough-'n'-tumble fighters.

When not fighting amongst themselves, they fought with us.
Oh, they called us out one night to reef the tops'ls.

There was belayin' pins a-flyin' around the deck.
We came on deck and went to set the tops'ls.

Not a man among the bunch could sing a song.
Oh, the mate he grabbed ahold of me by the collar.

"If you don't sing a song, I'll break your blasted neck!"
I got up and gave them a verse of "Reuben Ranzo."

Oh, the answer that I got would make you sick!
It was three long months before we got to Callao,

And the ship she was called a floating hell.
We filled up there at Callao with saltpetre,

And then back again around Cape Horn!
(Alternate last verse)


We filled up with saltpetre to the hatches

And then bound around Cape Horn to Liverpool.
//

[A-ROVING]
//
A-Roving (I)

In Amsterdam there lived a maid, And she was mistress of her trade,
I'll go no more a-roving with you, fair maid!
A-roving, a-roving, Since roving's been my ruin,
I'll go no more a-roving with you, fair maid!

This last six months I've been to sea,
And boys this maid looked good to me.

[etc, both cheeks, badly bent, red-hot Yank, up to Callao]
//

[NEW YORK GIRLS]
//
Can't They Dance The Polka!

Shipmates, if you'll listen to me, I'll tell you in my song
Of things that happened to me When I came home from Hong Kong.
To me way, you Santy, my dear honey!
Oh, you New York gals, can't they dance the polka!

As I waked down through Chatham Street, etc…

[etc, for Boston I am bound, something nice to eat, hailed a passing car, Bleeker Street, head went round and round, ship was at Shanghee, stark naked in the bed]

[HEAVE AWAY MY JOHNNIES]
//
Heave Away (II)

Sometimes we're bound to New York town (New Orleans, etc.), and others we're bound to France,
Heave away, my jollies, heave away, ay!
But now we're bound to Liverpool to see the English girls dance
And away, my jolly boys, we're all bound to go!

The pilot he is waiting for the turning of the tide,
And then we are off with a good westerly wind.

[etc, the American Bar, look for a ship once more, John DaCosta's]
//

[RIO GRANDE]
//
Rio Grande (II)

Now I was born on the Rio Grande
Way, Rio!
I was born down on the Rio Grande,
And I'm bound for Rio Grande!
And away, Rio, Away, Rio
So fare you well, my bonny young gal,
We're bound for Rio Grande!

Rio Grande [New York town, Boston town, etc.] is no place for me;
I'll pack my bag and I'll go to sea.

The anchor is weighed and the sails they are set,
The girls we are leaving we'll never forget.

I'll ship down at New Orleans,
She's loaded with cotton and bound to Liverpool.
//

[SACRAMENTO]
//
Sacramento (II)

As I was out upon the road one day,
With me hoodah, and a hoodah,
As I was out upon the road one day,
And it's hoodah, doodah, day!
Blow, boys, blow, for Californyo.
There is plenty of gold, so I've been told,
On the banks of Sacramento!

Says I, "Old man, your horse is lame,"

[etc, More verses from Poor Old Man minstrel song]
//

[SACRAMENTO]
//
Sacramento (III)

As I was walking out upon the road one day,
I met a fair maid, on her arm a milk pail,

[etc, milkmaid verses]
//

[JOHNNY COME DOWN TO HILO]
//
Johnny Walk Along to Hilo

Oh, wake her, oh, shake her,
Oh, wake that gal with the blue dress on!
Then Johnny walk along to Hilo,
Oh, poor old man!
Oh, I once knew a nigger and his name was Ned,
And he had no hair on the top of his head,
//

[JOHN BROWN'S BODY]
//
John Brown's Body

John Brown's body lies a-mould'ring in the grave
John Brown's body lies a-mould'ring in the grave
John Brown's body lies a-mould'ring in the grave
[Then it's hip, hip, hip, hurrah!
Glory, glory, hallelujah,
Glory, glory, hallelujah
Glory, glory, hallelujah,
Then it's hip, hip, hip, hurrah!]

There's my girl with the blue dress on,
//

[SALLY BROWN]
//
Sally Brown (I)

Sally Brown was a gay old lady,
Way-ay, roll and go!
Sally Brown was a Creole lady,
Spent my money on Sally Brown

She had a farm in the isle of Jamaica,
Where she raised sugarcane, rum, an' terbacker.

[Etc, fine young daughter, seven long years I courted Sally, would not have a tarry sailor, married to a nigger soldier, left her with a nigger baby, why did you ever jilt me]
//

[SHENANDOAH]
//
Shenandoah

Shanadore, I love your daughter,
Hooway, you rolling river,
Oh, Shanadore, I love your daughter,
Hyah, bound away, To the wild Missouri!

For seven long years I've courted your daughter.
Oh, Shanadore, I want to marry.

Now, Shanadore, will you give me your word to?
Oh, Shanadore, give me your word to,

To marry your daughter, I love her dearly.
//

[SANTIANA]
//
Santy Anna (I)

Santy Anna gained the day,
Hooray, Santy Anna!
Santy Anna gained the day,
All on the plains of Mexico!

Santy Anna fought for fame,
That's how Santy gained his name,

'Twas on the field of Molino del Rey,
Old Santy lost his leg that day,
//

[LOWLANDS AWAY]
//
Lowlands (I)

Lowlands, lowlands, away, my John.
Five dollars a day is a stevedore's pay;
Five dollars and a half a day.

A dollar a day is a nigger's pay.
Lowlands, lowlands, away, my John.
I thought I heard our old man say,
Five dollars and a half a day

That he would give us grog today,
When we are leaving Mobile Bay.
//

[LOWLANDS AWAY]
//
Lowlands (II)

In the Virginia lowlands I was born,
Lowlands, lowlands, away, my John.
I worked all day down in the corn,
My dollar and a half a day.

I packed my bag and I'm going away;
I'll make my way to Mobile Bay.

In Mobile Bay, where they work all day,
A-screwing cotton by the day,

Five dollars a day is a white man's pay,
A dollar and a half is a colored man's pay.
//

[MR. STORMALONG]
//
Stormalong

Old Stormalong was a gay old man,
[To me, way, old Stormalong!
Old Stormalong was a grand old man,
[Aye, aye, aye, Captain Stormalong.]

But now he's dead, poor old Stormy's gone;
We buried old Stormy off Cape Horn,

Poor old Stormy we'll ne'er see again.
We buried Poor Stormy off Cape Horn!

We rolled him up in a silvery shroud
We lowered him down with a golden chain.

Although he's gone, he's left us a son.
How I wis I was old Stormy's son!

I'd build a ship of a thousand ton
I'd load her down with New England Rum

I'd sail this wide world round and round
And every day my crew would get their rum!

I'd pour out two drinks for the shantyman (twice)

I'd pour out drinks for every man
And a double cup for the shantyman!
//

[GOODBYE FARE YOU WELL]
//
Homeward Bound (I)

"We're homeward bound!" I've heard them say; 

Good by, fare you well, good bye, fare you well! 

We're homeward bound to Mobile Bay. 

Hurrah, my boys, we're homeward bound! 



When we get there, won't we fly round! 

With the gals we find there we will raise merry hell. 


When we are hauling in the Waterloo Dock, 

Where the boys and the gals on the pier-head do flock, 



And one to the other you'll hear them say, 

"Here comes jolly Jack and his eighteen months' pay!" 



Then we'll go up to the Dog and the Bell, 

And the landlord he'll come in with his face all in smiles, 



Saying, "Drink up, Jack, for it's worth your while!" 

But when you money is all gone and spent, 



There's none to be borrowed nor none to be lent. 

Then you'll see him come in with a frown, 



And then you'll hear him to the other man say, 

"Get up there, Jack, and let John sit down!" 



When your pocketbook's full and your name it is John, 

But when you are broke then your name it is Jack.
//

The following 2 come from recordings shared by Barnicle.

[BLOW BOYS BLOW]
//
Blow, Boys, Blow (I)

Oh, blow away, I long to hear you,
Blow, boys blow!
Oh, blow away, I long to hear you,
Blow, my bully boys, blow!

[Etc., today/tomorrow, grief/sorrow, Congo River, from Bangor, from Arizona]
//

[HEAVE AWAY MY JOHNNIES]
//
Heave Away (I)

As I was a-walking one morning down by the Clarence (Waterloo) dock:
Heave away, my Johnny, heave a way-ay,
I overheard an emigrant conversing with Tapscott;
And a-way, my jolly boys, we're all bound to go!

"Good morning, Mr. Tapscott… etc

[etc, carry me over the sea, Joshuay Walker and the other the Kangaroo, ton of yallow male, Channel of St. George, stole all me yallow male!, stay all my life on the shore]
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 28 Jul 11 - 01:05 AM

John O'Brien, Sailors' Snug Harbor, contributed the solo on 3 chanties for Doerflinger. They are all rather short.

[WHISKEY JOHNNY]
//
Whiskey, Johnny (I)

Whiskey here and whiskey there,
Whiskey, Johnny!
Oh, whiskey her and whiskey there,
Whiskey for me Johnny!

'Twas whiskey made me wear old clothes.
//

[ROLL THE COTTON DOWN]
//
Roll the Cotton Down (I)

Oh, roll the cotton, roll me, boys,
[Roll the cotton down;]
Oh, roll the cotton, roll me, boys,
[Oh, roll the cotton down.]

2.When I was young and in my prime,

3. I thought I'd jine the Black Ball Line.
//

[GOODBYE FARE YOU WELL]
//
Homeward Bound (II)

"We're homeward bound," I hear them say:
Good-bye, fare you well, good-bye, fare you well!
"We're homeward bound," I hear them say:
Hurrah, my boys, we're homeward bound!

[etc., nine months' pay, New York town, near broke my heart]
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 28 Jul 11 - 01:12 AM

Harry Steele (b.1869), Sailors' Snug Harbor. Was a deep-water sailor 1886-1910. Born in erstwhile Prussia, came to America in 1886 and sailed in American, British, Canadian, German vessels.

He led this one chanty.

[WHISKEY JOHNNY]
//
Whiskey, Johnny (III)

Whiskey is the life of man,
Whiskey, Johnny
Oh, whiskey is the life of man,
Oh, whiskey for my Johnny!

I'll drink whiseky when I can,
I'll drink whiskey out of a big tin can,

Whiskey killed my poor old dad,
Whiskey drove my old girl mad.

[Etc., brother Ben, whiskey mill, tell me true]
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 28 Jul 11 - 01:22 AM

Captain Patrick Tayluer. Born in Eastport, Maine, but spent a good deal of life in parts of British Empire. Frist went to sea circa 1885. American and British vessels. His recordings are in the Archive of American Folk-Song, Library of Congress.

Seemed to have been a great improviser, and some of his chanties are quite extensive in their verses.

[BLOW THE MAN DOWN]
//
Blow the Man Down (I)

Now, come all you young sailors and listen to me,
With your way, hay-y, blow the man down,
Ah, come all you young sailors and listen to me,
And we'll give 'em some time for to blow the man down!

[etc, boot him around, home from Hong Kong, Ratcliffe Highway, both bound to hell]
//

[REUBEN RANZO]
//
Reuben Ranzo (II)

Oh, pore old Roving Ranzo,
[Ranzo, boys, a-Ranzo]
Oh, pore old Roving Ranzo
[Ranzo boys, a-Ranzo!]

Now, Ranzo he was (Aw, Ranzo was) no sailor.

So pore old Roving Ranzo,

Now (So) they shipped him on board of a whaler!

Now the captain he liked Ranzo.

So the captain he taught him how to read and write.

He taught him navigation.

when he got his first mate's papers,

He became a terror to whalers!

He was known all over the world as

As the worst old bastard on the seas!

He would take his ship to Georgiay.

And there he'd (he would) drag for sperm whale.

He lost the only ship he had
His first and last and only ship

Was the Morgan, and she's known everywhere.

Now (oh), he's gone to hell and we're all glad!

Now, I've told you he was no sailor.

He was a New York tailor.

Whether (oh, whether) a tailor or a sailor

He sure became a Ranzo!
//

[BLOW BOYS BLOW]
//
Blow, Boys, Blow (III)

Now, it's blow, you winds, 'Ow I long to hear you;
Blow, boys, blow!
Oh, blow, you winds, 'Ow I long to hear you;
Blow, my bully boys, blow!

[etc yonder in the river, bronco mate, Massandatter, Boston slugger, donkey's liver, dirty big brother]
//

[LONG TIME AGO]
//
A Long Time Ago (IV)

Oh, a long, long time and a very long time,
[To me way, ha-ay, hay yah!]
Oh, a long, long time, and a very long time
[Oh, a long time ago]

Old Noah, he built a Hark for to sail (to go)

Around (Oh, around) the world and home again

Now I wend down to the docks one morn for a ship

There was an old wooden packet a-lyin' there,

So I wnet on board and sked for a job.

Oh, it (she) must have been the old Ark that Noah built.

Her hatch you had never saw nothing before!

About thirty-six feet long and nowhere insured.

Oh, her knees were so thick that you could not discern.

It's a long, long time and a very long time

Now this is the hatch (where) the animals must have gone down.(went down)

The gangway it was built of timber six foot high

I thought that I had struck an 'ome at last,

Where I could make a pay-day and go

Out to the western shores and away

But I had (I had) made a mistake when I judged her that way,

For at last, when we got out and to sea

Her bow it was bluff and her counter was round

Her fores'l would come to within about six points,

Her fo'c'sle was low and her poop was so high

That she looked just like a Dutch galley-old-yacht [galleotte]

So it's a long, long time and a very long time
Oh it's a long long time and a very long time, etc.
//

[LONG TIME AGO]
//
A Long Time Ago (V)

[One strung-out verses, the repeat often began with "Oh"]

There was an old lady who lived in Dundee,
[To me way, hay, hay, yah]
There was an old lady who lived in Dundee,
[Oh, a long time ago]

Now her sons (they) grew up and they all went to sea

One became mate and the other a sailor

But the one that I'm going to tell you of, the story is:

He joined a Hark bound out for the East

And not as a sailor nor yet as a mate

He joined as the master of that fine clipper ship

Now, you all remember the ship that I mentioned.

'Twas the Catty Sark, (and) her name was so high

Now (Oh) he took her out East and he lost his old ship (his whole trip)

He took her out East as these words I have told you

Out to Foochow and then home again

Now, un'appily for him, he married out there

A nice little girl with a long pigtail!

Oh, she wore the trousers and he wore the shirt

But when I can tell you the voyage 'e made 'ome.

Now it's a long, long time and a very long time
Oh a long, long time and a very long time

One hundred and eight days, (oh)he did sail.

And 'e used to look at 'is Chinese wife and say,

If it 'adn't a been for your unluck on board!

Now, a long, long time and a very long time.

Now, I told you he was always a-growlin' at 'is wife,

But when in London he did arrive,

The owners they told him he had made a record voyage!

So what did he do but he's blessed his young wife

And instead of callin' her Mong Sallee

He called her the sweet name of Mong Cutty Sark
//

[A-ROVING]
//
A-Roving (II)

[intro] Now, a-roving, a-roving, Since roving has been my downfall,
I'll go no more a-roving with you, fair maid!
Mark well what I do say!
[cho.] Oh, a-roving, a-roving
Since roving has been my downfall,
I'll go no more a roving with you, fair maid!

1. When I laid my hand upon her knee,
She said, "Young man, you're being rather free!
Won't you please go 'way and leave me, your fair young maid?"

2. Now, when I laid my hand upon her old bustle,
She said, "Young man, you're a-goin' to have a tussle!"
So we'll go no more a-roving with you, fair maid!

3. So at last we chatted and chaffed away;
She said, "Young man, you're a-goin' today!"
When all I want to leave is for me, fair maid.

4. When I laid my hand on her shoulders then,
She looked at me and gently cried,
"You're going away today, you are, so farewell now!"
//

[RIO GRANDE]
//
Rio Grande (I)

Heave away, Rio! Heave away, Rio! 

Singin' fare you well, my bonnie young gal,

And we're bound to Rio Grande! 



"May I come with you, my pretty maid?" 

Heave away, Rio! 

"Oh, may I come with you, oh, my pretty maid?" 

When you're bound to Rio Grande! 



"You can please yourself, young man," she did say, 


Now, when I can come to you with open arms, 
 


God bless you, may I only hope for your hand, 



Now, there is one thing that I would like to say, 
 


I pray you tell, oh, may I have your hand? 
 



Now, if you'll come back, as you went away-- 


I'll marry you when I come back and we'll say, 
 

//

[SACRAMENTO]
//
Sacramento (I)

It was in the year eighteen hundred and forty-nine,
With me hoodah, and me hoodah,
It was in the year eighteen hundred and forty-nine,
A-with me hoodah, hoodah-ay!
Blow, boys, blow, for Californiay!
Ah, there is lots of gold, oh, so I've been told,
Upon the banks of the Sacari-mento!

[Etc, Horn and home again, one day in May, there did sail, a quartering waind, dipped her nose, we took them in, climbed for a week]
//

[SALLY BROWN]
//
Sally Brown (II)

Aw, Sally Brown, well I loves your daughter,
[next line was "too forthright to print"]

Aw, Sally Brown, I been a long while a-courtin' ya,

Aw, Sally Brown, you know you didn't ought to do,

Etc, court of the sailormen, for fourteen years have I been courtin' ya, buyin' joolery, ]
//

[SANTIANA]
//
Santy Anna (II)

[Solos begin with "Oh" when repeated]

Oh, Mexico, my Mexico,
Heave away, Santy Anno!
Oh, Mexico, my Mexico,
All along the plains of Mexico.

The ladies there, oh, I do adore,

Where I began my lifelong store.

Now, the girls are pretty with their long black hair.

[etc, I do belong, senora right there, you know what you are, you've taught me well, Sannajooves tonight, tight-waisted girl]
//

[CAMPANERO]
//
The Campañero

Intro:

Oh, whenever I went away, The story I'd like to tell,
About an 'andy little bark, the Campanero.

Chorus:
Oh, it's between the cook and the pump,
Well they drive me off me chump
On the 'andy little bark, the Campanero!
If I ever go to sea,Well, it won't be up to me
To go in that handy little bark, the Campanero!

Oh, the skip-per he is a bulldozer, And you never did hear
The words that come from a man's mouth so often
The mate he wants to fight, and then durin' every night,
the boys around the hatch they all surround him.

Well, I'd have you all to know that wherever you do go,
If you see the name a-running fore-and-aft her,
Don't jine her anywhere, or you'll never forget the day
That you jined that 'andy little bark, the Campenaro!

You may ring around the world, and go just where you please,
She's a livin' at a single time for days and months.
But if you';; take a sailor's advice, you'll get married once or twice
Before you jine that 'andy little bark, the Campanero!
//

[JA JA JA] Pump shanty.
//
Ja, Ja, Ja!

O mitsch mein inkum stinkum buckerroom and mein ja, ja, ja,
Mitsch mein inkum stinkum buckerroom and mein ja, ja, ja,
Vell, ve'll git up on der shteeples and ve'll spit down on der peoples,
Mitsch mein ja, ja, ja!
//

[LEAVE HER JOHNNY]
//
Time For Us to Leave Her (Leave Her, Johnny)

Now, the time are hard and the wages low,
Leave her, Johnny, leave her!
Ah, the times are hard and the wages low,
It is time for us to leave her!

Oh, we'll leave her now and we'll leave her very soon.

Oh, no more cracker-hash and dandyfunk!

[etc. give us our pay, leave her very soon, it's this old way, along to the Horn, left her for good]
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 28 Jul 11 - 01:26 AM

Leslie Nickerson of Freeport, Nova Scotia. Followed the sea "for some years." No dates given. Doerflinger met him in 1930. 2 chanties.

[BLOW THE MAN DOWN]
//
Blow the Man Down (IV)

Verses from the ballad "The Twa Corbies".

There was three crows sat on a tree,
Way, hay, blow the man down,
And they was black as black could be.
Gimme some time to blow the man down!

[etc]
//

[BLOW THE MAN DOWN] w/ Captain Weber.
//
Blow the Man Down (V)

Old Horse, Old horse, what brought you here,
[Way, hay, blow the man down,]
After ploughing the turf for many a year;
[Gimme some time to blow the man down!]

With kicks and cuffs and sad abuse,
We're salted down for sailor's use.

Between the mainmast and the pump,
We're salted down in great big hunks.

And when the mate comes from the rudder
He takes a piece of this old blubber.
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 28 Jul 11 - 01:32 AM

From Adolph Colstad of Sailors' Snug Harbor.

[BLOW BOYS BLOW]
//
Blow, Boys, Blow (IV)

I served my time in the Black Ball Line

A Yankee ship comes down the river

[Etc. dinner, then Sailor's Grace lines]
//

**************

William Laurie, born 1862 in Greenock, Scotland. Went to sea circa 1876.

Doerflinger recorded him in 1940 at Sailors' Snug Harbor.

[LONG TIME AGO]
//
A Long Time Ago (I)

Away down South in Old Tennessee,
[Way, hay, hay, yah,]
Away down South in old Tennessee,
[Oh, a long time a-go]

It is a long time, a very long time
A long time, a very long time

Since my young lady has written to me, (twice)

Saying, "Willie dear, come home from sea." (twice)

It is a long time, a very long time,
Oh, a long time, a very long time

If ever I get my foot on the shore (twice)

Oh I will go to sea no more!
Oh I will go to the sea no more!

If ever I get my foot on the land, (twice)

I will be some lady's fancy man!
Oh, I will be some lady's fancy man!

It is a long time, a very long time
It's a long time, a very long time, etc.
//

[GIMME DE BANJO] Laurie first heard it around age 15 in 1877 on American ship _Kit Carson_. Checkerboard watch.
//
Gimme de Banjo

Oh, dis is de day we pick on de banjo
[Dance, gal, gimme de banjo!]

Oh, dat banjo, dat tal-la-tal-la-wan-go

Oh, dat ban-jo, dat seben-string ban-jo

I was only one an' twenty

Ah was sent to school fer to be a scholar!

Mah collar was stiff, an Ah could not swaller.

Oh, dere's mah book, down on de table

An' you kin read it if you're able!
//

[SOUTH AUSTRALIA]
//
South Australia

Oh, in South Australia where I was born,
Heave away, haul away!
In South Australia 'round Cape Horn,
I'm bound for South Australia!
Heave away, you ruler king,
Heave away, haul away!
Heave a way, don't you hear me sing?
We're bound for South Australia!
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 28 Jul 11 - 01:40 AM

Captain James P. Barker (ca.1875, Cheshire, England-1949), master of America's last commercial ship TUSITALA of NY. Went to sea 1889. Commanded British ships in Cape Horn trade, later became American citizen. Rounded Cape Horn 41 times.

[LONG TIME AGO] There is a tune variant here – I've used the TUNE in this recording:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q25dLNyaBK4
//
A Long Time Ago (VI)

Then up aloft this yard must go,
[To me, way, ay, ay, yah,]
Then up a-loft this yard must go,
[For it's a long time a-go.]

I placed my hand upon her knee

"I think, young man, you're rather free!"

Then one more pull and that will do.

Oh, one more pull and then it's belay!
//

[HELLO SOMEBODY] One of the best shantymen he'd known was American Negro, "Lemon" Curtis, crew of ship DOVENBY HALL of Liverpool in the 1890s. Barker heard him, and no others, sing this one.
//
Hello, Somebody

[intro] [Hello, Somebody, hello!]
There's Some-bod-y knock-ing at the garden gate;
[Hello Somebody, hello!]
There's Somebody knocking at the garden gate;
[Hello Somebody, hello!]

Somebody wants to know mah name

It's Nigger Dick from New Brunswick
//

[RISE HER UP] Pulling and Walkaway Shanty. Sung by Barker in the style of Curtis
//
Rise Me Up From Down Below

Oh, I come from the world below.
That is where the cocks do crow.
[Whis-key oh, John-ny oh!
Oh, rise me up from down below,
Down below, oh, oh, oh, oh
Up aloft this yard must go, John!
Rise me up from down below!]

I come from the world below!
That is where the fires do roar.
//

[HIGHLAND] The men sang it in chorus throughout.
//
Highland Laddie

Ay, Ay, and away she goes,
Bonnie laddie, Hieland laddie,
Ay, ay, and away she goes,
Bonnie Hieland laddie!

'Way she goes, heels and toes,

This is the day we sail this way,
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 28 Jul 11 - 01:43 AM

Eliezer Zinck, Nova Scotia

[SUSIANA]
//
Susiana

We'll heave him up from down below
[Hooray, oh, Susiana!]
We'll heave him up and away we'll go,
[Away right over the mountain!]
//

**********

Jones O. Morehouse, Sandy Cove, Digby Neck, Nova Scotia.

[GOODBYE FARE YOU WELL]
//
Homeward Bound (III)

"We're homeward bound," I hear our captain say:
Good-bye, fare ye well, good-bye, fare ye well!
"We're homeward bound for Liverpool town,
Hurrah, my boys, we're homeward bound!"

When I get home I will tell my mama
That the girls in Liverpool won't let me alone!

As I walked down Ratcliffe Highway
A pretty maid I chanced for to meet.

[etc, milkmaid lyrics]
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 28 Jul 11 - 01:50 AM

Captain Barker gave the sing-out:

//
Hellie hellie shumra, shumra, shumra,…[etc]
//

Hugill reproduced it. It goes something like this:
Hellie hellie shumra


And that's it for my notes on Doerflinger.


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 03 Aug 11 - 04:39 AM

1942        Parrish, Lydia. _Slave Songs of the Georgia Sea Islands_. New York: Creative Age Press.

Parrish first heard this music in Feb. 1909 when she took up residence on St. Simon's Island. However, she's not specific about when particular items were heard, and her presentations may be based on several hearings. Some items were recorded in the 1930s.

Music transcribed by Creighton Churchill and Robert MacGimsey.
Chapter 6 on "Work Songs".

She read Colcord and Terry, and Allen's _Slave Songs_. Also Fanny Kemble's _Journal_. Quotes NGJ Ballanta who wrote of the connection between song and work in Africa.

Talks about field-calls, which include a break in the voice. Says that these "old ways" died after 1880s in her neighborhood (Southern New Jersey).

//
In Brunswick, vessels are still loaded to the musical chant of "Sandy Anna"; freight cars at the sugar terminal are shunted for short distances to the rhythm of "Old Tar River," and the cabin in front of my house was moved on rollers from Kelvin Grove to the significant tune of "Pay Me My Money Down!"
//

Joe Armstrong and Henry Merchant of St. Simon's Island were both at one time leaders of stevedore crews. Loaded lumber, stowed cotton.
Floyd White, Henry Merchant, and others gave her shanties. Employed "the old-fashioned falsetto tones"

"Free at Last" used for "blockin' timber."

[BLOW BOYS BLOW] Used to hoist the gaff:

//
What do you think he had for dinner?
Monkey soup an' gray molasses.
Blow, my bully boys, blow!
//

And

[CLEAR THE TRACK]
//
Clear the track an' let the bullgine back.
//

And

//
O bring me a 'gator
O gal when you come off the islan'.
A ring-tail 'ator
O gal when you come off the islan'
A Darien 'gator
O gal when you come off the islan'
//

[HANGING JOHNNY] Used in loading timber on board vessel, 6 men on each side of rope hauled.
//
Call me hangin' Johnny
        O hang boys hang.
You call me hangin' Johnny
        O hang boys hang. [etc]
Yes, I never hang nobody
I never hang nobody
O we'll heave an' haul together
We heave an' haul forever
They hang my ole Grandaddy
They hang him for his money
O they hang him for his money
They hang him for his money
They call me hangin' Johnny
O I never hang nobody
//

[SANTIANA]
//
Sandy Anna

Seaman, what's the madda?
        Hoo-ray 'o-ray
Seaman, what's the madda?
        Hooray, Sandy Anna.

Seaman stole my dolla'
He stole it in Savannah

He spend it in Havana
I caught 'im in his colla'

I shake 'im till he holla'
Seaman stole my dolla'
//

[BLOW THE MAN DOWN]
//
KNOCK A MAN DOWN

Whoever heard talk about Little Johnny Brown
        Oh Ho knock a man down
        Knock a man down from London town
        Oh gimme some time to knock a man down.

Knock a man down bullies an' kick him aroun'
        Oh Ho knock a man down
        Knock a man down from London town
        Oh gimme some time to knock a man down.

Y'u ever hear dtalk about Little Johnny Brown
        Oh Ho knock a man down
        Fines' cap'n on Doboy Sound
        Oh gimme some time to knock a man down.
//

[MONEY DOWN]
//
PAY ME MY MONEY DOWN

Pay me, Oh pay me
        Pay me my money down
Pay me or go to jail
        Pay me my money down.
Oh pay me, Oh pay me
        Pay me my money down
Pay me or go to jail
        Pay me my money down.

Think I heard my captain say
T'morrow is my sailin' day

(chorus)

Wish't I was Mr. Coffin's son
Stay in the house an' drink good rum

(chorus)

You owe me, pay me
Pay me or go to jail

(chorus)

Wish't I was Mr. Foster's son
I'd set on the bank an' see the work done
//

//
DEBT I OWE

Debt I owe, Lord, debt I owe
I ain' gonna pay no debt I owe
Debt I owe, Lord, debt I owe
I ain' gonna pay no debt I owe
        Debt I owe in Brunswick sto'e
I ain' gonna pay no debt I owe
O Mister Watchman don't watch me
I ain' gonna pay no debt I owe
Watch that nig'ah right behine that tree
I ain' gonna pay no debt I owe
//

//
RAGGED LEEVY

Ragged Leevy! Oh—Ho!
        Do ragged Leevy
Ragged Leevy! O boy!
You ragged like a jay bird!
Mr. Sipplin! Han-n-nh
Goin' to buil' me a sto'e fence
In the mornin'—Oh—Ho!
Soon in the mornin'.
Hos' an buggy—Oh—Ho!
Hos' an' buggy
Hos' an' buggy—O boy!
Dey's no one to drive 'um.
Mr. Sipplin' Ha-n-nh
In de mornin'
When I rise
I goin' to sit by de fire.
In the mornin'—Oh—Ho!
O soon in the mornin'
In de mornin'
When I rise I goin' to sit by de fire.
Mauma Dinah Oh—Ho!
Do Mauma Dinah
Mauma Dinah
O gal I can't suppo't you.
Mr. Sipplin! Ha-n-nh
Do Mr. Sipplin
Walkin' talkin'!
O buil' me a sto'e fence.
Sweet potato Oh—Ho!
Sweet potato
Sweet potato O boy
There's two in de fire.
Mr. Sipplin! Ha-n-nh
Goin' to buil' me a sto'e fence
In de mornin' Oh—Ho!
When I rise I goin' to sit by de fire.
//

//
OLE TAR RIVER

Chorus: O, On the ole Tar river
        O-e-e-e
O, On the ole Tar river
Lord, Lord, the ole Tar river
Tar river goin' run tomorrow
        O-e-e-e-
Tar river goin' run tomorrow
Lord, Lord, the ole Tar river.

Tar river run black an' dirty
        O-e-e-e
Tar river run black an' dirty
Lord, Lord, the ole Tar river
Tar river goin' to water my horses
        O-e-e-e
Tar river goin' to water my horses
Lord, Lord, the ole Tar river

Ole Tar river is a healin' water
        O-e-e-e
Ole Tar river is a healin' water
Lord, Lord, the ole Tar river
Ole Tar river run free an' easy
        O-e-e-e
Ole Tar river run free an 'easy
Lord, Lord, the ole Tar river

Chorus: Way down, way down in the country
        O-e-e-e
Way down, way down in the country
Lord, Lord, the ole Tar river
//

Bit similar to TOMMY'S GONE.
//
GOOD-BYE MY RILEY O

Riley, Riley where were you?
        O Riley, O man!
Riley gone an' I'm goin' too
        Goodbye my Riley O!

Riley, Riley, where were you?
Riley gone to Liverpool

You Democrat Riley
You Democrat Riley

Riley, Riley, where were you?
When I played that nine spot through
//

[SHALLOW BROWN]
//
SHILO BROWN

Shilo Ah wonduh what's tuh mattuh?
        Shilo, Shilo Brown.
Shilo Ah wonduh what's tuh mattuh?
        O Shilo, Shilo Brown.

Stivedore's in trouble [x2]

Take yo' time an' drive 'um [x2]

Shilo gone to ruin
Shilo gone to ruin I know
//

//
THIS TIME ANOTHER YEAR

This time another year
I may be gone
In some lonesome graveyard
O Lord how long!
My brother broke the ice an' gone
O Lord how long!
My brother broke the ice an' gone
O Lord how long!

Befo' this time another year
I may be gone
In some lonesome graveyard
O Lord how long!
Mind my sister how you walk on the cross
O Lord how long!
Your right foot slip an' y'ur soul get los'
O Lord how long!
//

[SOUTH AUSTRALIA]
//
HAUL AWAY, I'M A ROLLIN' KING

Haul away, I'm a rollin' king
        Haul away, haul away
I'm boun' for South Australia.
Yonder come a flounder flat on the groun'
Haul away, haul away
I'm boun' for South Australia.
Belly to the groun' an' back to the sun
Haul away, haul away
I'm boun' for South Australia.
Ain' but one thing worry me
Haul away, haul away
I'm boun' for South Australia.
I leave my wife in Tennessee
Haul away, haul away
I'm boun' for South Australia.
Haul away, I'm a rollin' king
Haul away, haul away
I'm boun' for South Australia.
//

//
SUNDOWN BELOW

This tune was sung at the end of the day as a hint to the captain, when the hold was too dark for the stevedores to see what they were doing.

Sun is down an' I must go
Sundown
Sundown below
Sun is down in the hole below
Sundown
Sundown below
I hear my captain say
Sundown
Sundown below
Sun is down an' I mus' go
Sundown
Sundown below
//

//
MY SOUL BE AT RES'

One a dese mornin's—it won't be long
        My soul be at res'.
One a dese mornin's—it won't be long
        My soul be at res'.
Be at res'—goin' be at res'
        My soul be at res'.
Be at res' till Judgement Day
        My soul be at res'.
It won't be long—it won't be long
        My soul be at res'.
Be at res' till Judgement Day
        My soul be at res'.
One a dese mornin's—it won't be long
        My soul be at res'.
Goin' t'hitch on my wings an' try the air
        My soul be at res'.
One a dese mornin's—it won't be long
        My soul be at res'.
You a'ks fo' me an' I'll be gone
        My soul be at res'.
//

//
ANNIBELLE

Of all the shanties, this concerning Anniebelle appears to be adaptable to the most varied uses, and to be the most widely distributed. Joe tells me he learned it over forty years ago from the stevedores who loaded lumber on the vessels at the Hilton-Dodge mills, but its main use was for "spikin' steel" on the railroads. I notice, however, that he puts the song to equally good use in chopping wood or swinging the weed cutter. In the mines it is called a "hammerin'" song."

Anniebelle
        Hunh!
Don't weep
        Hunh!
Anniebelle
        Hunh!
Don't moan
        Hunh!
[etc]
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 03 Aug 11 - 06:01 PM

Somehow along the way I forget to register the chanteying references in Melville. (Lighter's recent post about use of chanties in a new Moby-Dick film reminded me.) I'm going to dig those up now, with the help of Stuart Frank's essay,

1985        Frank, Stuart M. "Cheer'ly Man": Chanteying in Omoo and Moby-Dick. The New England Quarterly 58(1) (Mar., 1985), pp. 68-82.


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 03 Aug 11 - 11:45 PM

1847[March]        Melville, Herman. _Omoo: A Narrative of Adventures in the South Seas_. London: John Murray.

Written in 1846. Melville's sea experience was 1841-42, in whaling ship to South Pacific (Marquesas). He'd also seen Liverpool.

The chanteying references are consistent with what we know about chanteying for the time period, i.e. the popularity of "Cheer'ly Man," the vague "singing" of untitled (and perhaps non-distinct) songs, and, indeed, the overall lack of references to familiar chanteys. Melville was such a richly descriptive writer, and it would be surprising if there was lots of notable chanteying going on but he did not make effort to explain it. On the other hand, maybe he just wasn't interested in dotting his prose with verse all the time, unlike lots of other 19th century authors.

First reference is to [CHEERLY] while catting anchor. [151]
//
The decks were all life and commotion; the sailors on the forecastle singing, "Ho, cheerly men!" as they catted the anchor;
//

In the other reference, sailors ashore are "Farming in Polynesia." They decide to try to make the work of clearing land go more smoothly by brining in one of their windlass songs. "Shorty" in the passage is a Cockney character. [206]
//
"Give us a song, Shorty," said the doctor, who was rather sociable, on a short acquaintance. Where the work to be accomplished is any way difficult, this mode of enlivening toil is quite efficacious among sailors. So, willing to make every thing as cheerful as possible, Shorty struck up, "Were you ever in Dumbarton?" a marvellously inspiring, but somewhat indecorous windlass chorus.
//

Stuart Frank notes that Doerflinger collected "Were you ever in Dumbarton?" from a lumberjack. But while the line is reminiscent of "Highland Laddie" and other chanties, they don't resemble each other in other ways that I can see. Rather, Doerflinger notes the similarity between this and the song in 1832's _The Quid_, i.e.

"Oh! if I had her,
Eh then if I had her,
Oh! how I could love her,
Black although she be."

The similarity comes in the chorus of "Dumbarton." I must say that the "Quid" lyrics do scan quite nicely over the version of "Dumbarton" collected by Doerflinger. I'm even more enthusiastic about the similarity than Doerflinger seemed to be. Doerflinger's is in 3/4 meter. Though tempo comes into play as a variable, my guess is that such a song would not have worked well at the brake/pump windlass, but would have been just fine at the spoke windlass. My hunch is that Melville's ship(s) would have still been fitted with the spoke windlass. I've said before the idea that the adoption of the new brake windlass may have been a factor in ushering in the new kind of worksongs. Perhaps, by the same token, the obsolescence of the old windlass contributed to older songs dying out.

Doerflinger called "Dumbarton" a Scottish folk song, which seems reasonable based on its content, however, I'm not finding any info on the song outside of references to Omoo and Doerflinger's book.


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 03 Aug 11 - 11:50 PM

1851[Oct.]        Melville, Herman. _Moby-Dick_.

The first reference is to a windlass song mentioning girls of Booble Alley. Stuart Frank (1985) drew a connection to "Haul Away Joe," but IMO that part of his article is weak. He seemed to base it on revival versions of the song, which may have been influenced by Sharp's presentation of John Short. So, not to say that "Booble Alley" could not or was not referenced in potentially any chantey (John Short's is proof), but rather that a connection to "Haul Away, Joe" is unlikely. We have seen that Maryat in 1837 also referenced that place, in his description of [SALLY BROWN] at what seems to have been the newly patented brake windlass. [98 in my Signet edition]
//
…the hands at the windlass, who roared forth some sort of a chorus about the girls in Booble Alley, with hearty good will.
//

The next reference tells us that singing happened at the pumps [pg 238]
//
Nor in the solitary and savage seas far from you to the westward, gentlemen, is it altogether unusual for ships to keep clanging at their pump-handles in full chorus even for a voyage of considerable length;
//

Singing is mentioned during the "cutting in" process of a whale. They are heaving at the windlass while singing a "wild chorus" (in order to flense the animal by means of tackle fastened to blubber) [294-296]
//
And now suspended in stages over the side, Starbuck and Stubb, the mates, armed with their long spades, began cutting a hole in the body for the insertion of the hook just above the nearest of the two side-fins. This done, a broad, semicircular line is cut round the hole, the hook is inserted, and the main body of the crew striking up a wild chorus, now commence heaving in one dense crowd at the windlass…

….The heavers forward now resume their song, and while the one tackle is peeling and hoisting a second strip from the whale, the other is slowly slackened away, and down goes the first strip through the main hatchway right beneath, into an unfurnished parlor called the blubber-room. Into this twilight apartment sundry nimble hands keep coiling away the long blanket-piece as if it were a great live mass of plaited serpents. And thus the work proceeds; the two tackles hoisting and lowering simultaneously; both whale and windlass heaving, the heavers singing, the blubber-room gentlemen coiling, the mates scarfing, the ship straining, and all hands swearing occasionally, by way of assuaging the general friction.
//

[CHEERLY] is used at braces. [Pg492]
//
Instantly the yards were squared, to the lively song of "Ho! the fair wind! oh-he-yo, cheerly men!" the crew singing for joy, that so promising an event should so soon have falsified the evil portents preceding it.
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 04 Aug 11 - 02:13 AM

1951[reissued 2004] Various Artists. _American Sea Songs & Shanties_. Duncan Emrich, ed. The Library of Congress, Archive of Folk Culture. Rounder, CD, 18964-1519-2.

Incidentally, this is one of the recordings I listened to in college that got me interested in singing chanties.

The author of these notes made great use of Doerflinger, Colcord, and Masefield in order to write the intro notes to each song. These notes are not of much use to us; I am focused on the content of the recordings, some of which includes explanations by the singers.

Notes the slow tempo of the singers.
//
To those who may be acquainted with certain of these songs through the radio or from the singing of trained vocalists, one thing is at once apparent --the slow tempo of the singing. This tempo is true to the tradition, and any faster tempo is a falsification of the shanties. The shanties were work songs, and the work was slow and arduous; …
//

Richard Maitland. Rec by Alan Lomax, 1939.

[BOWLINE]
//
HAUL THE BOWLINE

This is the oldest known short-haul shanty, and, according to John Masefield, goes back to the days of Henry VIII. …

"Now this is a short song that's usually used in pulling aft a sheet or hauling down a tack."

Haul the bowline, the long-tailed bowline,
Haul the bowline, the bowline haul. (That's the chorus")

Haul the bowline, Kitty, oh [YOUR], my darling,
Haul the bowline, the bowline haul.

Haul the bowline, we'll haul and haul together,
Haul the bowline, the bowline haul.

Haul the bowline, we'll haul for better weather,
Haul the bowline, the bowline haul.

Haul the bowline, we'll bust, we'll break our banner, [or bend her]
Haul the bowline, the bowline haul.
//

[DRUNKEN SAILOR]
//
THE DRUNKEN SAILOR

"Now this is a song that's usually sang when men are walking away with the slack of a rope, generally when the iron ships are scrubbing their bottom. After an iron ship has been twelve months at sea, there's a quite a lot of barnacles and grass grows onto her bottom. And generally, in the calm latitudes, up in the horse latitudes in the North Atlantic Ocean, usually they rig up a purchase for to scrub the bottom. You can't do it when the ship is going over three mile an hour, but less than that, of course, you can do so. But it all means a considerable walking, not much labor, but all walking. And they have a song called 'The Drunken Sailor' that comes in for that."

Now what shall we do with the drunken sailor,
What shall we do with the drunken sailor,
What shall we do with the drunken sailor
Early in the morning?

Oh, chuck him in the long boat till he gets sober,

Ay hey and up she rises,

Oh, what shall we do with the drunken soldier,

Oh, put him in the guardhouse and make him bail her,
Put him in the guardhouse till he gets sober,
Put him in the guardhouse till he gets sober
Way hey and up she rises,

Oh, here we are nice and sober,

Oh, way hey and up she rises,
//

[A-ROVING]
//
A-ROVING

"Now this is a song that we usually sing on the capstan, heaving the anchor up, before the days of steam come in to help us out•••also to heave the ship in from different parts of the dock to other berths made for her, when she had to shift around."

In Amsterdam there lived a maid,
And she was mistress of her trade,
I'll go no more a-roving with you, fair maid;
For a-roving, a-roving, since roving's been my ruin,
I'll go no more a-roving with you, fair maid.

Her eyes were like twin stars at night,
And her cheeks they rivalled the roses red,

I asked this fair maid where she lived,
She rooms up on Skidansky Dyke.

I took this fair maid for a walk,
For I liked to hear her loving talk.

I placed my hand upon her knee,
Says she, "Young man, you're getting free."

This last six months I've been to sea,
And, boys, this gal looked good to me.

In three weeks time I was badly bent,
And then to sea I sadly went.

On a red hot Yank bound 'round Cape Horn,
My clothes and boots were in the pawn,
//

[HEAVE AWAY MY JOHNNIES]
//
HEAVE AWAY

One morning as I was a-walking down by the Waterloo Docks,
Heave away, my Johnny, heave away,
I overheard an emigrant conversing with Tapscott,
And away, my jolly boys, we're all bound to go.

"Good morning, Mr. Tapscott, good morning, sir," says she,
"Oh, have you any ship or two that'll carry me over the sea?"

"Oh, yes, my noble young Irish blade, I have a ship or two,"
"One is the Joshua[y] Walker, and the other's the Kangaroo,"

"Now the Joshua[y] Walker on Friday she will make sail,"
"The present day she's taking on board a thousand bags of male,"

Bad luck to the Joshua[y] Walker and the day that she made sail,
For the sailor's got drunk and broke upon the trunk, and stole all me yallow male!
//

//
PADDY DOYLE

"Now this is a song that's just used in the one place•••on the•••when the men are all together on the yards, one of the lower yards. they call it the main or foreyard •••and they're rolling up the sail. They get the sail all ready for the one big bowsing up, and the man in the bunt will sing•••

Way ay ay yah,
We'll all fling dung at the cook!

With that last word, 'cook,' all hands gives a bowse on it, and that hauls the sail up•••but you'll never get it up with one pull, so the man sings out then…

Way ay ay yah,
Who sold poor Paddy Doyle's boots?

And another pull. Well, if it isn't satisfactory, if you want one more •••

Way ay ay yah,
We'll all go down and hang the cook.

Well, if the sail is bowsed up, that's all there is to be said about it•••but there's never any more than about six verses to that same song."
//

[PADDY LAY BACK]
//
PADDY, GET BACK

I was broke and out of a job in the city of London,
I went down the Shadwell docks to get a ship.

Chorus:
Paddy, get back, take in the slack,
Heave away your capstan, heave a pawl, heave a pawl!
'Bout ship and stations there be handy,
Rise, tacks and sheets and mainsail, haul!

("This is a capstan shanty now•••")

There was a Yankee ship a-laying in the basin,
Oh, they told me she was going to New York.

If I ever lay my hands on that shipping master,
Oh, I'll murder him if it's the last thing that I do.

When the pilot left the ship way down the channel,
Oh, the captain told us we were going around Cape Horn.

The mate and second mate belonged to Boston,
And the captain hailed from Bangor down in Maine.

The three of them were rough and tumble fighters,
When not fighting amongst themselves, they turned on us.

Oh, they called us out one night to reef the topsails,
Now with belaying pins a-flying around the deck.

Oh, and we came on deck and went to set the topsails,
Not a man among the bunch could sing a song.

We had tinkers, we had tailors and firemen, also cooks,
And they couldn't sing a shanty unless they had the book.

Oh, wasn't that a bunch of hoodlums
For to take a ship around Cape Horn!

M: "Now this song•••I forgot to explain it in the first place•••it commences•••The solo is sung by the shantyman sitting on the capstan head, where he always does sing•••sit in case of singing shanties. The shantyman sits there and does nothing, while the crew, walking around the capstan, are singing. The chorus begins at:

Paddy, get back, take in the slack,
Heave away the capstan, heave a pawl,
'Bout ship and stations there be handy,
Rise, tacks and sheets and mainsail, haul!

L: "And show us where the pull.••where the••.comes•••"
M: "That's what I'm telling them now. This 'Paddy, get back' is the chorus••• "
L: "And that's where they pull?"
M: "There's no pull in a capstan shanty! They're walking around the capstan with the bars!"
//

[BLOW THE MAN DOWN]
//
BLOW THE MAN DOWN (II)

As I was a-walking down Paradise Street,
Way hey, blow the man down,
A dashing young damsel I chanced for to meet,
Give me some time to blow the man down.

I hailed her in English, and hailed her all 'round,
I hauled up alongside, and asked where she was bound,

She'd left the Black Arrow bound for the Shakespeare,
We went in and had two big glasses of beer,
//

[HANDY MY BOYS]
//
SO HANDY, ME BOYS, SO HANDY

Now handy high and handy low,
Handy, me boys, so handy,
Oh, it's handy high and away we'll go,
Handy, me boys, so handy.

Hoist her up from down below,
We'll hoist her up through frost and snow,

We'll hoist her up from down below,
We'll hoist her and show her clew.

One more pull and that will do.
Oh, we'll sing a song that'll make her go.

Now it's growl you may, but go you must,
If you growl too much, your head they'll bust.

Now one more pull and then belay,
And another long pull and we'll call it a day.

Now handy high and handy low,
Oh, one more pull and we'll send her alow.

We'll hoist her up and show her clew,
And we'll make her go through frost and snow,

Lomax: What kind of a shanty is that?
Maitland: Well, that's a pulling shanty. You see where they --"handy, me boys" Is that thing going?
L: Uh-huh.
M: That's a hoisting shanty, it goes -- you can either take a single long pull except when the mate is out of humor, and he sings out to "double up, double up," then you take a pull at "handy, me boys, so handy."
L: Was that a very popular shanty?
M: Yes, sure it's very popular!
//

[LONG TIME AGO]
//
A LONG TIME AGO

Maitiand: Now this is a song that's very popular in the vessels bound across with cotton from Mobile, New Orleans, Savannah, Charleston, any place where they load cotton, and it's usually sang with a gusto when they do sing it.

Way down South where I was born,
Way ay ay yah,
I've picked the cotton and hoed the corn,
Oh a long time ago.

In the good old State of Alabam' ,
So I've packed my bag, and I'm going away,

When I was young and in my prime,
Oh, I served my time in the Black Ball Line.

I'm going away to Mobile Bay,
Where they screw, the cotton by the day.

Five dollars a day's a white man's pay,
And a dollar and a half is a black man's pay.

When the ship is loaded, I'm going to sea,
For a sailor's life is the life for me,
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 04 Aug 11 - 02:16 AM

cont.,

Sung by Noble B. Brown at Woodman, Wisconsin. Recorded by Helene Stratman-Thomas and Aubrey Snyder, 1946.

[BLOW BOYS BLOW]
//
BLOW, BOYS, BLOW!

A Yankee ship came down the river,
Blow, boys, blow,
A Yankee ship came down the river,
Blow, boys, bonny boys, blow.

And how do you know she's a Yankee clipper?
Oh, how do you know she's a Yankee clipper?

The stars and bars they flew behind her, [x2]

And who do you think was the skipper of her?
A bluenosed Nova Scotia hardcase.

And who do you think was the chief mate of her?
A loudmouthed disbarred Boston lawyer.

And what do you think we had for breakfast?
The starboard side of an old sou'wester.

Then what do you think we had for dinner?
We had monkey's heart and shark's liver.

Can you guess what we had for supper?
We had strong salt junk and weak tea water.

Then blow us out am blow us homeward,
Oh, blow today and blow tomorrow.

Blow fair and steady, mild and pleasant,
Oh, blow us into Boston Harbor.

We'll blow ashore and blow our pay day,
Then blow aboard and blow away.

We'll blow until our blow is over,
From Singapore to Cliffs of Dover,
//

[REUBEN RANZO]
//
REUBEN RANZO

Poor old Reuben Ranzo,
Ranzo, boy, Ranzo,
Poor old Reuben Ranzo,
Ranzo, boy, Ranzo.

He shipped aboard a whaler,
But Ranzo was no sailor,

He could not do his duty,
For neither love nor beauty.

He could not find his sea legs,
Used clumsy, awkward land pegs.

He could not coil a line right,
Did not know end from rope's bight.

Could not splice the main brace, [laughs]
He was a seasick soft case.

He could not box the compass,
The skipper raised a rumpus.

The old man was a bully,
At sea was wild and woolly.

Abused poor Reuben plenty,
He scourged him five and twenty.

He lashed him to the mainmast,
The poor seafaring outcast.

Poor Reuben cried and pleaded,
But he was left unheeded.

Some vessels are hard cases,
Keep sailors in strict places.

Do not show any mercy,
For Reuben, James, nor Percy.

The ocean is exacting,
Is often cruel acting.

A sailor never whimpers,
Though shanghaied by shore crimpers,

"I learned that aboard a sailing ship on a voyage from San Francisco to Falmouth, England."
//

[BLOW THE MAN DOWN]
//
BLOW THE MAN DOWN (I )

…The first version, sung by Noble B. Brown, is rather unusual because of the use of "heave away" rather than "to me way hay" in the first chorus line. …

We will haul, we will pull, we will all heave away,
Heave away, away, blow the man down,
We will haul in the night and we'll pull during day,
Oh, give us some time to blow the man down.

We will pull, we will haul, hearty, healthy, and gay,
Like husky strong seamen to earn able to pay,

We will pull, the commands of our skipper obey,
We will haul till we hear the command to belay,

We'll expend all the energy we can afford,
We'll joyfully heave the dead horse overboard.

We will heave with all might, we will heave with all main,
We will heave till the main brace needs splicing again.

We will heave when we're sickened by roughness of sea,
We will heave when recovering from a big spree.

We will heave when the salt horse and hog becomes rank,
We will heave for good treatment -- our officers think.

To heave is what seamen should know how to do,
And sometimes a vessel is forced to heave, too [heave-toJ•

We'll heave heaving lines to a tender ashore,
Leave heaving of cargo to strong stevedore.

We will heave everywhere on the world's surface round,
We will heave the most joyfully when homeward bound.

Blow the man down, bullies, blow the man down,
We'll heave the most joyfully when homeward bound,
//


Capt. Leighton Robinson.
First set at Mill Valley, California, 1951. Recorded by Sam Eskin.

THE SAILOR'S ALPHABET – not a shanty.


[DEAD HORSE]
//
THE DEAD HORSE

"They would get a tar barrel and get 'Chips' to make a horse's head to it, and put a tar brush in the stern of it and for a tail•••and then they would mount it on this thing [a sort of cart], and generally the shantyman would get astride of it and, as I say, it being fine weather, why they'd start and pull this thing along the deck. And then the shanty-man would sing the song, what they called 'Poor Old Man' or 'The Burying of the Dead Horse.' Having worked up thirty days, why, then the next day they were going on pay. They were really earning some money then. 'Course they'd be into the slopchest probably for a few beans, but at the same time they'd feel that they'd begun to earn their money. And this is the way that that went•••

A poor old man came riding along,
And we say so, and we hope so,
A poor old man comes riding along,
Oh, poor old man.

Poor old man, your horse he must die,
Poor old man, your horse he must die,

Thirty days have come and gone.

Now we are on a good month's pay.

I think I hear our old man say.

Give than grog for the thirtieth day.

Up aloft to the main yard arm.

Cut him adrift, and he'll do no harm,

I might explain to you that we hoisted him up to the main yard arm, and then there was a fellow up there•••we generally used the clew garnet, you know, just to hoist him up there, we had to put a strop around the barrel ••and then they would just cut him adrift. And then you'd see this old thing floating astern."
//

[JOHNNY BOWKER] Seems to make an assumption about Robinson's "shore" singing, based on what he'd read.
//
JOHNNY BOKER

…Capt. Robinson, in his shore singing of it, lengthens the do! beyond the normal manner in which it would have been sung at sea. References: Doerflinger, p. 9; Colcord, p. 44.

"…Well, that's a shanty, of course, when you're taking a drag on the main sheet. You get all hands, say, on deck about the time when you're changing the watches•••and you don't want to put a watch tackle on it or take it to a capstan, and it's not blowing too hard, why, you can get a short drag on that and get a little slack in."

Oh, do, my Johnny Boker, come rock and roll me over,
Do, my Johnny Boker, do!

Oh, do, my Johnny Boker, we're bound across to Dover,
Do, my Johnny Boker, do!

//

The following were recorded at Belvedere, California, 1939, by Sidney Robertson Cowell. The younger Robinson does seem a bit more lively – than the other singers, too.

//
RIO GRANDE

Oh, Rio Grande lies far away,
'Way Rio!
Oh, Rio Grande lies far away,
And we're bound for the Rio Grande.

Chorus: And away Rio, it's away Rio!
Singing fare you well, my bonny young girl,
And we're bound for the Rio Grande.

I thought I heard our old man say,
I thought I heard our old man say,

Two dollars a day is a sailor's pay.
So it's pack up your donkey, and get under way.

Oh, I left my old woman a month's half pay.

So heave up our anchor, away we must go,
Oh, heave up our anchor, away we must go,
//

//
WHISKY JOHNNY

Oh, whisky here, and whisky there,
Whisky Johnny,
Oh, whisky here, and whisky there,
Oh, whisky for my Johnny,

Oh, I'll drink whisky when I can,
Oh, I'll drink whisky while I can,

Oh, whisky gave me a broken nose.

And whisky made me pawn my clothes.

Oh, if whisky were a river, and I were a duck.

I'd swim around till I got right drunk.

Oh, whisky landed me in jail.

Oh, whisky in an old tin pail,
//

[ROLL THE COTTON DOWN]
//
ROLL THE COTTON DOWN

Oh, away down South where I was born,
Oh, roll the cotton down,
Away down South where I was born,
Oh, roll the cotton down.

A dollar a day is the white man's pay,
Oh, a dollar a day is the white man's pay,

I thought I heard our old man say.

We're homeward bound to Mobile Bay.

Oh, hoist away that yard and sing.

"That's enough."
//

[ROLLING HOME]
//
ROLLING HOME

Pipe all hands to man the windlass, see our cable run down clear,
As we heave away our anchor, for old England's shores we'll steer.

Chorus: Rolling home, rolling home, rolling home across the sea,
Rolling home to merry England, rolling home, dear land, to thee.

Man your bars, heave with a will, lads, every hand that can clap on,
As we heave away our anchor, we will sing this well known song.

Fare you well Australia's daughters, fare you well sweet foreign shore,
For we're bound across the waters, homeward bound again once more.

Up aloft amongst the rigging, where the stormy winds do blow,
Oh, the waves as they rush past us seem to murmur as they go.

Twice ten thousand miles before us, twice ten thousand miles we've gone. Oh, the girls in dear old England gaily call us way along.

'''Vast heaving!"
//

[GOODBYE FARE YOU WELL]
//
HOMEWARD BOUND

We're homeward bound, I hear them say,
Goodbye, fare you well, goodbye, fare you well,
We're homeward bound, I hear them say,
Hurrah, my boys, we're homeward bound.

We're homeward bound this very day,
We're homeward bound this very day,

We're homeward bound for 'Frisco town.

Oh, heave away, she's up and down.

Our anchor, boys, we soon will see.

We're homeward bound, 'tis a joyous sound.

Oh, I thought I heard our old man say.

Oh, 'Frisco Bay in three months and a day.

Oh, these 'Frisco girls they have got us in tow.

And it's goodbye to Katie and goodnight to Nell.

Oh, it's goodbye again and fare you well.

And now I hear our first mate say.

We've got the fluke at last in sight,
We've got the fluke at last in sight,

" 'Vast heaving!"
//

WHEN JONES'S ALE WAS NEW, forecastle song, sung by John M. (Sailor Dad) Hunt of Marion, Virginia. Recorded at Washington, D.C., 1941, by John A. Lomax.


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 04 Aug 11 - 09:35 PM

1927        Eckstorm, Fannie Hardy and Mary Winslow Smyth. _Minstrelsy of Maine: Folk-songs and Ballads of the Woods and the Coast_. Boston and New York: Houghton Mifflin.

[Some question marks due to illegible spots in my copy.]

Deep-Sea Songs:

The Stately Southerner
The Flying Cloud
Tacking Ship Off Shore
The Banks of Newfoundland
Sailors' 'Come-All-Ye'
Old Horse
The Greenland Whale Fishery
The Pretty Mohea
The Sailors' Alphabet

Chanteys:

Contributed by Laura E. Richards of Gardiner, ME, March 1926. Said the verses were learned by her mother in 1852, on board a sailing vessel from Italy to America.

[TOMMY'S GONE]
//
Tom's Gone Away

Oh, Tom he was a darling boy,
        Tom's gone away!
Oh, Tome he was the sailor's joy,
        Tom's gone away!
And hurrah for Jenny, boys,
        Tom's gone away!
And hurrah for Jenny, boys,
//

[HELLO SOMEBODY]
//
Hilo

Arise, old woman, and let me in!
        Way! hi-lo!
Hi-lo, somebody! hi-lo!
//

[LONG TIME AGO]
//
A Long Time Ago

I wish I was in Baltimore,
        I-i-i-o!
A-skating on the sanded floor,
        A long time ago;
Forever and forever,
        I-i-i-o!
Forever and forever, boys,
        A long time ago!
//

Mrs. Seth S. Thornton of Southwest Harbor, Maine, Nov. 1926. Said this topsail halliards chantey "used to be sung on board ship in my father's day."

[CLEAR THE TRACK] is the dominant bit of this, but it also has aspects of "Mobile Bay" and "Roller Bowler."
//
Mobile Bay

Was you ever in Mobile Bay?
        A hay! a hue! Ain't you most done?
A-screwing cotton by the day?
        A hay! a hue! Ain't you most done?
Oh, yes, I've been in Mobile Bay
A-screwing cotton by the day;
So clear the track, let the bullgine run,
With a rig-a-jig-jig and a ha-ha-ha,
Good morning ladies all!
//

Contributed by Frank Stanley of Cranberry Isles, Maine, Nov. 1925. Looks like Stanley took all these texts from Clark's _The Clipper Ship Era_.

[LOWLANDS AWAY] [PADDY DOYLE] "Rolling John" [PADDY ON THE RAILWAY] [WHISLEY JOHNNY]

From Captain J.A. Creighton of Thomaston, Maine, Aug. 192?. Wrote, "This is a chanty the writer has never seen in print but [?-ed] to sing over forty years ago. There must have been fifty verses to this chanty, and it told of a sailor's life from beginning to end and was one of the best chanties the writer ever heard…"

[LIVERPOOL GIRLS]
//
First to California, Oh, Fondly I went

First to California, oh, fondly I went,
For to stop in that country it was my intent;
But the drinking of whiskey, like every damn fool,
Soon got me imported back to Liverpool.

Refrain:
Singing, Row, Row, Row, bullies, Row.
Oh, the Liverpool girls they have got us in tow,
Singing, Row, Row, Row, bullies, Row.
Oh, the Liverpool girls they have got us in tow.

And now we are down and on the line,
The Captain's a-cursing, he's all out of wine,
We're hauling and pulling these yards all about,
For to give this flash packet a quick passage out.

And now we are down and off Cape Horn,
The boys have no clothes for to keep themselves warm,
She's diving bows aunder and the decks are all wet,
And we're going round Cape Horn with the main skysail set.
//

//
Too-li-aye

A negro chantey. Of this and the preceding, Captain Creighton wrote, 'These two chanties do not amount to much without the music, but they never fail to bring down the house when sung by a few old salts that know how to get the funny yodel-like notes that were common in the good old times of the "down-east square-rigger."'

A Yankee ship and a Yankee crew,
Jan Kanaganaga too-li-aye.

Refrain.
Too-li-aye, too-li-aye,
Jan Kanaganaga, too-li-aye.

A Yankee ship with a lot to do,
Jan Kanaganaga, too-li-aye.

A Yankee ship with a Yankee mate,
Jan Kanaganaga, too-li-aye.

If you stop to walk he'll change your gait,
Jan Kanaganaga, too-li-aye.
//

[DRUNKEN SAILOR]
//
…learned by the [??] editor's grandmother, probably considerably over a hundred years ago as she used to hear the sailors singing as they tacked in going up the Penobscot.

What shall we do with the drunken sailor?...
So early in the morning?

Put him in the long-boat and let him bail her;

Ay, ay, up she rises!
//

A "coastwise chantey". Sung by Capt. Rufus H. Young of Hancock Maine, Oct. 1925, 92 years old. Said was favorite for "getting under way". Had 40-50+ verses. Girl is chewing gum (!). So, not until after 1870, maybe not even till after 1890s. Tune is "When Johnny comes marching home."
//
Johnny, Fill Up the Bowl

Johnny and Jenny by the fireside say,
Hoorah! Hoorah!
Johnny and Jenny by the fireside say,
Hoorah! Hoorah!

Johnny and Jenny by the fireside say,
And Johnny saw Jenny's mouth open and shet,
And Johnny saw Jenny's mouth open and shet,
[??..] all drink stone-blind,
Johnny, fill up the bowl!
//

Taken down ca.1904 by WM Hardy of Brewer, Maine, from the singing of Captain William Coombs of Islesboro, Maine. The following 2 are local fishermen's chanteys. Short because the small sails were quickly hoisted.
//
Isle o' Holt (Highland Laddie)

Was you ever on the Isle o' Holt,
Bonnie laddie, Hielan' laddie?
Where John Thompson swallowed a colt,
Bonnie laddie, Hielan' laddie?
Hurroo, my dandies O!
Bonnie laddie, Hielan' laddie;
Hurroo, my dandies O!
Bonnie Hielan' laddie.

I opened an orange and found a letter,
Bonnie laddie, Hielan' laddie.
And the more I read it grew better and better,
Bonnie Hielan' laddie.
Hurroo, my dandies O!
Bonnie laddie, Hielan' laddie,
Hurroo, my dandies O!
Bonnie Hielan' laddie.
//

//
Church and Chapel

I rode to church, I rode to chapel,
Pull down!
With a hickory horse and a white-oak saddle,
        Pull down below!
Pull down, pull down, pull down together,
Pull down, pull down, my dandy fellows,
        Pull down!
//

From L.I. Flower of Central Cambridge, New Brunswick, 1926, who thought these were the favorite chanties among guys in the lumber woods.

[SHENANDOAH]
//
Shenandore

Heave her up from down below, boys!
Hooray, you rolling river!
Heave her up and let her go, boys!
Aha! Bound away o'er the wild Missouri.

Shenandore, I long to see you! X2

Shenandore! I love your daughter,
I love the roar of your rushing waters,
//

Only the chorus remembered. This is connected to a Great Lakes song, "The Cruise of the Bigelow," which was probably not a chanety
//
Buffalo

Stop her! Catch! Jump her up in a juba-ju!
Give her the sheet and let her go!
We are the boys can crowd her through.
You ought to have seen her travel, the wind a-blowing free,
On her passage down to Buffalo from Milwaukee!
//

Says the Black Ball Line sailed from Saint John (New Brunswick), and he remembers them from 55 years ago.
//
Blow the Man Down

'Twas in a Black-Baller I first served my time,
To my yo-heave-ho! blow the man down!
'Twas in a Black-Baller I wasted my prime,
O! give me some time to blow the man down!

'Twas when a Black-Baller was leaving the land,
Our captain then gave us the word of command,

'Lay aft,' was the cry, 'to the break of the poop,'
'And I'll help you along with the toe of my boot,'

'Twas when a Black-Baller came home to the dock,
The lad and the lasses around her did flock,
//

From Susie C. Young of Brewer, Main, 1926.
[HIGHLAND]
//
Highland Laddie

Was you ever to Quebec,
Halan' Laddie, bonnie Laddie!
Where they hoist their timber all on deck,
With a Halan' bonnie Laddie?
Heave-O! me heart and soul,
Halan' Laddie, Bonnie Laddie,
Heave-O! me heart and soul,
To me Halan', Bonnie Laddie.

Was you ever to the Isle of France,
Where the girls are taught to dance
//

Young said apparently of Negro/West Indian origin, sung in Orland for several generations. Thinks her grandfather may have learned it at sea.
//
Shove 'er up! Shove 'er up!
Keep shoving of 'er up!
Shove 'er up! Shove 'er up!
Keep shoving of 'er up!
Shove 'er in the gangway!
Shove 'er in the boat!
I'd rather have a guinea than a ten-pound note.
        Though a guinea it will sink
        And a note it will float,
I'd rather have a guinea than a ten-pound note.
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 05 Aug 11 - 03:54 PM

Thought I had caught all the Folk-Song Society articles, but here's one more!

1928        Thomas, J.E., Lucy E. Broadwood, Frank Howes, and Frank Kidson. "Sea Shanties." Journal of the Folk-Song Society 8(32):96-100.

Collected in West Cornwall by J.E. Thomas

Sung by Mr. W. Tarr, 27 May 1924.
//
Whisky, You're My Darling

For 'tis good-bye Mick and good-bye Pat, and good-bye Mary Ann,
I'm goin' away this very day to the dear Americo,
For the ship lies in the harbour, As ev'rybody knows,
And here's to good old Ireland where the dear old shamrock grows. Whisky, you're my darling, Whisky, you're my friend,
Whisky, you're my darling drunk or sober.
//

The following two songs were sung by John Farr (age 76), 6 Dec. 1926.

[SALLY BROWN]
//
Sally Brown

O Sally Brown was a creole lady,
Way O roll and go,
Sally Brown was a creole lady,
Spent my money on Sally Brown.

Sally Brown is a captain's daughter (twice)

Sally Brown is a bright Mulatter,
She drinks rum and chews terbaccer.
//

Not a shanty.
//
The Banks of the Newfoundland

O you Western Ocean Labourers, I would have you all beware,
That when you're aboard of a packet-ship, no dung'ree jumpers wear,
But have a big monkey-jacket always at your command,
And think of the cold Nor'westers On the banks of the Newfoundland.

2 As I lay in my bunk one night
A-dreaming all alone,
I dreamt I was in Liverpool
'Way up in Marylebone,
With my true love beside of me
And a jug of ale in hand,
When I woke quite broken-hearted
On the banks of Newfoun(dland.

3 We had one Lynch from Bally Ack
Jimmy Murphy and Mike Moore,
'Twas in the year of 'sixty-two
And the sea-boys suffered sore.
For they pawned their clothes in Liverpool,
And sold them right out of hand,
Not thinking of Newfoundland.
4 We had one female passenger,
Bridget Riley was her name,
Unto her I promised marriage,
And on me she had a claim.
For she tore up all her petticoats
To make mittens for my hand,
Saving "I can't see my true-love freeze
On the banks of Newfoundland."

5 And now we're round Sandy Hook, my boys
The Island is covered with snow,
The steam-boat she's ahead of us
And to New York we will go.
So we'll rub her round and scrub her round
With holy stone and sand,
And say farewell to the Virgin Rocks
On the banks of Newfoundland.
//

[HEAVE AWAY MY JOHNNIES] Sung by John Farr, 10 Jan. 1926.
//
Heave Away, My Johnny

Sometimes we're bound for Liverpool town,
sometimes we're bound for France,
Heave away O my Johnny, heave away
Sometimes we're bound for Liverpool town,
sometimes we're bound for France,
Heave away O my jolly boys we're all bound to go.
//

[MR. STORMALONG] Sung by John Farr, 25 Jan 1926.
//
Mister Stormalong

O whisky is the life of man,
Hi! hi hi! Mister Stormalong,
O whisky is the life of man,
To my way-o Stormalong.

I wish I was old Stormy's son,
I'd give the boys a plenty of rum.

Old Stormy he is dead and gone (twice).
//

Sung by John Farr, 7 Feb. 1927.
[LOWLANDS]
//
Lowlands Away

Lowlands, Lowlands, away, my John,
I thought I heard our captain say.
Lowlands, Lowlands, away, my John,
We're sailing straight for Mobile Bay,
My dollar and a half a day.

I thought I heard our captain cry
A dollar and a half is a whiteman's pay.
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 05 Aug 11 - 03:56 PM

From one of Gordon Grant's sketchbooks:

1931        Grant, , Gordon. _Sail Ho!: Windjammer Sketches Alow and Aloft_. New York: W.F. Payson.

Pg 6. For brake windlass.
//
"Some say we're bound for Liverpool,
Some say we're bound for France,
I think we're bound for Frisco boys,
To give the girls a chance.

Heave away! my bully boys;
Ho! Heave and bust her!
Hang your beef, my bully boys;
Ho! Heave and bust her!"
//
Hugill printed this, saying, "A capstan shanty, the verses of which are related to the former song ["The Gals of Dublin Town"], has been sent to me by Mr. W.A. Bryce of Sutton Coldfield. Unfortunately he could not remember the tune..." Evidently Bryce had taken it from this book.

A sweating up song.
//
SWAYING OFF

They have set the main topgallant staysail…

"Ho, Molly come down,
Come down with your pretty posey,
Come down with your cheeks so rosy.
Ho, Molly, come down.
He O! He O!"
//
Hugill also mentioned this in connection with a similar sing out by Harlow and with the "Bunch of Roses" chanty. Mr. Bryce also sent him this.


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 05 Aug 11 - 04:04 PM

Maybe Jenny was chawin' terbaccer, not gum.

"Johnny Fill Up the Bowl" was the immediate melodic predecessor of "When Johnny Comes Marching Home." Both are frequently mentioned in Civil War memoirs, and the choruses were often blended together.

Carpenter also collected a brief shanty version.

JL


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 09 Aug 11 - 06:43 PM

1924        Frothingham, Robert, ed. _Songs of the Sea and Sailors' Chanteys_. Boston: Houghton Mifflin.

Contains a section with chanties (i.e. in addition to the nautical poetry that fills the rest).

The chanty selections look like they are based in various secondary sources, especially Davis & Tozer (the formatting of titles and such use it as a guide, at least), along with Masefield and RR Terry. However, the author has also taken the liberty of ~improving~ the songs a bit. Tunes are changed, perhaps based on what Frothingham believed they "should" have been. In "Tom's Gone to Ilo," for example, the contour follows D&T, but rather than the distinctive leaps between 6th and tonic, it has the major 7th degree in there – odd, I think, and contrived.

Did Frothingham have any access to primary sources, or any personal experience with these? He came out with numerous poetry/song anthologies on various themes, so I am assuming at this point that he was a compiler without significant first-hand knowledge. Would like to know more.

Hugill made use of plenty of the verses from this when harvesting for his SfSS collection.

Here is a list of the chanties. They are "typical", and, in my opinion, probably don't add to our historical knowledge of the genre. This evidently was, however, a work that was read and used as a source for later writers.

pg241. SAILORS' CHANTEYS [With score.]

LONG DRAG

[LONG TIME AGO] A Long Time Ago
[BLOW BLOYS BLOW] Blow, Boys, Blow
[BLOW THE MAN DOWN] Blow the Man Down
[BONEY] Boney Was a Warrior
[DEAD HORSE] Dead Horse
[HANGING JOHNNY] Hanging Johnnie
[LEAVE HER JOHNNY} Leave Her, Johnny, Leave Her
[REUBEN RANZO] Reuben Ranzo
[ROLL THE COTTON DOWN] Roll the Cotton Down
[TOMMY'S GONE] Tom's Gone to Ilo
[WHISKEY JOHNNY] Whisky for my Johnnie

SHORT DRAG

[HAUL AWAY JOE] Haul Away, Joe
[BOWLINE] Haul the Bowline
[JOHNNY BOWKER] Johnny Boker
[PADDY DOYLE] Paddy Doyle

CAPSTAN

[GOODBYE FARE YOU WELL] Homeward Bound
[SACRAMENTO] Hoodah-Day
[SANTIANA] The Plains of Mexico
RIO GRANDE] Rio Grande
[SALLY BROWN] Sally Brown
[HEAVE AWAY MY JOHNNIES] We're All Bound to Go
[SHENANDOAH] The Wide Missouri

PUMPING

[ONE MORE DAY] One More Day
[MR. STORMALONG] Storm-Along

OLD SEA SONGS

A-Roving
Spanish Ladies
Farewell, and Adieu to You
Rolling Home
High Barbaree
The Golden Vanity


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Charley Noble
Date: 09 Aug 11 - 07:58 PM

What interests me about Frothingham's publication is that it appeared in the middle of the whast I consider the first revival of sea shanties, as entertainment rather than for assisting with nautical work. His readers were supposed to be people who would want to sing these songs.

The bulk of the book is nautical poetry, and I found that part interesting in identifying forgotten nautical poets such as Bill Adams, Harry Kemp, and Burt Franklin Jenness who had experience at sea. Much of their poetry I've since posted to Allpoetry.com, and some I've set to music.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 09 Aug 11 - 09:44 PM

IIRC, Frothingham's shanties are all taken from Stanton H. King's _Book of Chanties_ (Boston, 1918).

During WWI, the U.S. Merchant Marine Shipping Board Recruiting Service named King its "official chanty-man," though I believe it only meant that he led sailors in mass singing, a popular morale-builder of the day.

According to King's preface, "The chanties in this book are as I heard them sung, and have often sung them myself when a sailor on our deep water American sailing ships."

According to Who's Who in New England (1909), King was born in Barbados in 1867. He apparently went to sea in 1880, served six years in merchant ships and then six more as an enlisted man in the U.S. Navy. Who's Who lists him as a "sailors' missionary." He was Superintendent of the Sailors' Haven, Charlestown, Mass., for many years.

Carpenter recorded some material from King in the late '20s.


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 09 Aug 11 - 10:48 PM

Sounds good, Charley. And thanks for that info, Lighter, that would explain things somewhat -- insofar as the chanty lyrics have a nice "ring" of authenticity for the most part, though there are also probably some borrowings going on to beef up the presentations. It would also rule out Terry as a possible source of borrowings.

If you you guys have a notion, I'd be curious to get your reaction to Frothingham's (King's?) presentation of "Tom's Gone to Ilo," which I've posted to the "Origins: Hilo" thread. My opinion is that it's very likely not "from tradition," in which case that confirms that Frothingham/King's chanties were influenced by publications.

One of my interests, as you know, is to get some semblance of an idea of what chanties were commonly sung and where/when/etc. That explains why I am interested in monitoring whether certain print appearances are all or "mostly" drawn from earlier publications, i.e. so the "tally" does not get too skewed.


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 11 Aug 11 - 12:09 AM

The following reference suggests that the word "chantey" was still somewhat obscure for the general public. Recall that in the 1880s, several authors used the term, however these were mainly nautical writers, and the term was used in quotes. Here, in 1890, it is still being treated as something that would be unfamiliar to readers.

1890[July]        Unknown. "Jack Tar's Vernacular." _New York Times_ (20 July, 1890).

"Some of the Odd Words and Phrases Used at Sea. A Dialect which the Landsman Could Never Hope to Master Except on Shipboard."

//
Jack's ditties, too, are frequently vehicles of his emotions. When he does not know how to "growl" fairly, he will put his feelings into a topsail-halyard song, and often has the anchor come up to a fierce chorus compounded of improvised abuse of the ship and the skipper, to which expression could not be given in a quieter method. Unfortunately the list of melodies is somewhat limited, but the lack of variety is no obstruction to the sailor's poetical inspiration when he wants the "old man" to know his private opinions without expressing them to his face, and so the same "chantey," as the windlass or halyard chorus is called, furnishes the music to as many various indignant remonstrances as Jack can find injuries to sing about.
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 11 Aug 11 - 01:18 AM

1850[Sept. 1849]        Melville, Herman. _Redburn: His First Voyage_. New York: Harper & Bros.

Singing out at a rope, evidently for sweating up. pp.63-64.
//
While I stood watching the red cigar-end promenading up and down, the mate suddenly stopped and gave an order, and the men sprang to obey it. It was not much, only something about hoisting one of the sails a little higher up on the mast. The men took hold of the rope, and began pulling upon it; the foremost man of all setting up a song with no words to it, only a strange musical rise and fall of notes. In the dark night, and far out upon the lonely sea, it sounded wild enough, and made me feel as I had sometimes felt, when in a twilight room a cousin of mine, with black eyes, used to play some old German airs on the piano. I almost looked round for goblins, and felt just a little bit afraid. But I soon got used to this singing; for the sailors never touched a rope without it. Sometimes, when no one happened to strike up, and the pulling, whatever it might be, did not seem to be getting forward very well, the mate would always say, "Come, men, can't any of you sing? Sing now, and raise the dead." And then some one of them would begin, and if every man's arms were as much relieved as mine by the song, and he could pull as much better as I did, with such a cheering accompaniment, I am sure the song was well worth the breath expended on it. It is a great thing in a sailor to know how to sing well, for he gets a great name by it from the officers, and a good deal of popularity among his shipmates. Some sea-captains, before shipping a man, always ask him whether he can sing out at a rope.
//

pg. 156
//
A thorough sailor must understand much of other avocations. …he must be a bit of a musician, in order to sing out at the halyards.
//

[CHEERLY} again for catting anchor. pg.303
//
Owing to a strong breeze, which had been blowing up the river for four days past, holding wind-bound in the various docks a multitude of ships for all parts of the world; there was now under weigh, a vast fleet of merchantmen, all steering broad out to sea. The white sails glistened in the clear morning air like a great Eastern encampment of sultans; and from many a forecastle, came the deep mellow old song Ho-o-he-yo, cheerily men! as the crews catted their anchors.
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 11 Aug 11 - 02:00 AM

The first "chantey sing"?

1926        Unknown. "Sea Chanteys Kept Alive. Sailors' Club in London is Collecting and Preserving the Old Songs of Sail." New York Times (7 Nov. 1926).

Seven Seas Club of London, holding monthly dinners. After formalities, people invited to sing chanteys. Examples mentioned: [BLOW THE MAN DOWN] ("O Blow the man down from Liverpool Town…") and [JOHNNY COME DOWN TO HILO] ("I nebber see de like since I bin born, When a big buck nigger wid his seaboots on, Says Johnny come down to Hilo, Poor ole man…") and "The Stately Southerner" (author of this article mixes up work and non-work songs) and [SACRAMENTO] ("As I was walking on the quay, Hoodah, to my hoodah…") and [SANTIANA] ("He won the day at Monterey, All on the plains of Mexico…") and [BONEY] ("Prooshians…") and [REUBEN RANZO] ("Now he's Captain Ranzo…") and [DRUNKEN SAILOR}and [SHENANDOAH] and [WHISKEY JOHNNY] and [ROLL THE COTTON DOWN] and [A-ROVING] and [HEAVE AWAY MY JOHNNIES] ("Heave Away! My Bullies" and [RIO GRANDE] and "High Barbaree."

They were singing "Terry's" version of "JCD to Hilo".

This is the group for which Sampson was requested to compile his shanty book.


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 11 Aug 11 - 02:16 AM

Brief statement on how RW Gordon viewed (part of) the development of chanties.

1927        Gordon, Robert W. "The Folk Songs of America: A Hunt on Hidden Trails." _New York Times_ (2 Jan. 1927).

//
With the sailor chanteys he did much the same thing [as with camp-meeting hymns > spirituals]. The negro on the docks heard them sung by white sailors. He borrowed them with minor variations. Those he liked he rebuilt to suit better his own tasks and later he invented new chanties on the old model.
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 11 Aug 11 - 04:54 AM

Gordon published a series of articles related to his work in the NYT in 1927. My last post comes from the first, introductory article in the series. The following is his work-songs article, which is focused on songs collected from Black men in the Southeast U.S. Evidently, though he uses the term "chantey" for these (yet also says they are "related to chanteys"), he has kept them distinct from the deepwater songs he collected.

1927        Gordon, Robert W. "Folk Songs of America: Work Chanteys." _New York Times_ (16 Jan. 1927).

Observes that texts are fluid. Only rhythm, basic tune, and refrain remain the same.

Section: "Related to Chanteys"

Songs collected on southern coast of Georgia,
First 2 are pulling chanteys.

Says "Riley" is
//
…in fact an adaptation of the white chantey "Old Stormy" though the tune is different. "Hilup, Boys, Hilo" probably came to the negro through the crew of some timber schooner. "Zekiel" is pure negro.
//
These seem to me poor examples in supporting an argument of the adaptation of White men's songs. The only connection I *see* to "Stormy" is the verse about wishing you were Such-n-such's son. But Gordon goes through pains to emphasize the fluidity of texts, so I see no reason to suggest it is an "adaptation" of the "white chantey"!

"Riley": "typical song often used on the docks". I think it has the flavour of [TOMMY'S GONE]:
//
Riley, Riley, where were you?
        Ho, Riley, ho, man!
Riley, Riley, where were you?
        Ho, Riley, row!

Riley gone to Liverpool. [x2]

Wish I were Cap'n Riley's son.

I'd lay down town an' drink good rum.

Riley lived till his head got bald.

Got out de notion o' dyin' at all.

Think I heard my captain say
"Tomorrer is our sailin' day!"
//

"quick time" chanty [HILO BOYS]. Is this the original source of a similar song that Charley has in his notes (supposed to have been reproduced in Southern's _Music of Black Americans_)?
//
O dis de day to roll an' go,
        Hilup, boys, hilo!
O dis de day to roll an' go,
        Hilup, boys, hilo!

De captain say "Tomorrow day"
"Tomorrow is my sailin' day"

O hit her hard and jam her lo.
O roll dat cotton in de hol'.
//

for slow time:
//
O Zekiel, when de Lord called Zekiel
        Tell dem dry bones live again!
O Zekiel, when de Lord called Zekiel
        Tell dem dry bones live again!

Think I heard my captain say, sir,
"Tomorrow is our sailin' day, sir,"

Think I heard my header say, sir,
"In de hold his [dis?] piece mus' go, sir"

Noble cap'n an' a bully crew, sir,
Need a bar to make him go, sir,


Ole hen cackle an' de rooster crow, sir
In de hol' dis a piece a mus' a go, sir,

Think I heard my captain say, sir,
One more heave an' dat will do, sir,
//

Notes that songs used in hammering are quite different. They have the coordinated grunt rather than a chorus.

Section: "Haunting Rowing Songs"

Formerly used along coastal regions of Geogia and the Carolinas. "…there is in many of them a depth of feeling not to be found in the other work songs." Suggests they are like "spirituals slightly made over". Too late to collect them, long boats with 6-8 men have pract disappeared. Up to Civil War, great island plantations had boat crews that took intense pride in both their rowing and singing skill.

On "Butler's" they wore uniforms. Largest boat of that plantation was called The Whale (destroyed in 1898) – but long before that singing crews were a thing of the past.

Leader sang in tenor, response in lower key. Lines overlapped "with curious effectiveness." All three of the following songs were sung to Gordon by men who had rowed in The Whale.

"Kneebow/kneebone". Feels a bit like [SHALLOW BROWN]

//
Kneebow when I call you,
        O Lord, kneebow!
Kneebow, O knee bow,
        O Lord, kneebow ben'!

Kneebow in baptism groun'.
Kneebow to de buryin' groun'.

Kneebow, O kneebow.
Kneebow to the elbow.

Bend my knees in de mornin'.
Kneebow ben' to save my soul.

Bend my knees in de evenin'.
Kneebow ben', de soul set free.

Elbow, O elbow.
I bend my knees, de boat do fly.
//

"My Army Cross Over"
//
O Lord, my army.
        My army cross over!
O Lord, my army.
        My army cross over!

How you do de crossin'?
Jedus [sic] help me over.

Cross him once a'ready.
Cross de mighty water.

Cross de river of Jordan.
Cross de mighty water.

Help me cross de ocean!
Jedus help me over!

Tell my Sister Sarah good-bye
Tell my sisters good-bye.

Cross dat mighty water. [x2]

Humor seldom appears in the rowing songs. Most are sad in tone and sung to slow and rather mournful tunes.
//

an exception:
//
Sandfly bite me, sen' for de doctor.
        Farewell, Lord, I gwine!
Sandfly bite me, sen' for de doctor.
        Farewell, Lord, I gwine!

O-o-oh, carry me over! [x2]

When I git over yonder I kick back Satan!
Git over yonder I kick back Satan!

O my lovin' mother!
I done forever!

Sandfly bite me, sen' for de doctor.
I done forever!
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 12 Aug 11 - 04:38 AM

In 1931, JM Carpenter published a series of 3 articles on his shanty research in the NYT. Here are excerpts from his second article. I've not yet attempted to collate these texts with others appearing in his collection.

1931        Carpenter, James M. "Life Before the Mast: A Chantey Log." New York Times (19 July 1931).

This installment describes typical chanteying events, supported by text examples. The surrounding notes are rather generic and I've not reproduced them.

[RIO GRANDE]
//
Boys, man the capstan and let us away.
Away-ay-ay-ee, Rio!
Boys, man the capstan and let us away.
For we're bound for the Rio Grande.
Then away-ay, Rio!
Away-ay-ay-ee, Rio!
Sing fare you well, my bonny young gal,
For we're bound for the Rio Grande!

Where are you going to, my pretty maid!
I'm going a milking, kind sir, she said,
//

Continues the capstan scene with [SACRAMENTO]
//…the crisp staccato of "The Banks of the Sacramento," which, with its Negro exuberance, tickles the heels of the sailors as they grind around the capstan:

When I was young and in my prime,
And a-hoo-dah! And a-hoo-dah!
I served my time in the Black Ball Line,
And a-hoo-dah, hoo-dah-day!
For Californi-o-o!
Blow, boys, blow!
There's plenty of gold, so I've been told,
On the banks of Sacramento!

Punkin puddin', an' a Injun pie,
De black cat kick out de gray cat's eye.
Oh, my ole missus she tole me
That when she die, she gwina set me free.
//

Doesn't say this verse from [BANKS OF NEWFOUNDLAND] was a chanty, but I think its being in the article implies it.
//
As I was a-lying in my bunk
And lying there alone,
I dreamt I was in Liverpool
Or down in the Marlebone,
With a rosy lass upon my knee,
And her at my command.
//

[WHISKEY JOHNNY]
//
Oh, whisky is the life of man
Whisky, Johnnie!
Oh, I'll drink whisky when I can,
Whisky for my Johnnie!

And when we doubled Old Cape Horn,
I was so cold and, oh, forlorn.

I wish I had some whiskey now,
I'd tip her up, and down she'd go.

Whisky made the Old Man cough,
Whisky made the bo's'n laugh.

Oh, my Old Duchess she likes gin,
And gin she'll have when she's got the tin.

Whisky killed my poor old dad,
Whisky druv my mother mad,
//

[HAUL AWAY JOE]
//
Way. haul away, Oh, haul away,my Rosy!
Way, haul away! Haul away—Joe!

Oh, once I had an Irish girl, and she was fat and lazy,

And then I had a Scotch girl, and she was thin and crazy,

And next I had a Yankee girl, and she was just a daisy,

And then I had a nigger girl, and she drove me ravin' crazy.

Oh, will you haul away, we will either bust or bend her,

Oh, will you haul away, if we bust her we can mend her.
//

[BLOW BOYS BLOW]
//
A Yankee ship comes down the river,
Blow, boys, blow!
Her masts and yards they shine like silver,
Blow, my bully boys, blow!

Then came tbe question, "Who d'ye s'pose wsa ca.ptaln of her?" To
this there was a a series of ribald answers, such as:

One-eyed Kelly, the bowery runner,
Snowball Sam, the flat-foot nigger,
Bully Jones, the California digger,
Bully Brown, the limejuice robber,
Captain Drunk, the horse-bull driver.

And after that the chanteyman had more fun with the query,
"What d' ye s'pose they had for dinner?" Here imagination ran
riot with responses like:

Pickled eel's feet and nigger's liver.
Monkey's gizzard and cock-a-roach liver.
Mosquito's heart and sandfly's liver.
Belaying pin soup and monkey's liver.
The starboard side of an old sou'-wester.
//

[REUBEN RANZO]
//
Oh, poor old Ruben Ranzo,
Ranzo, boys, Ranzo!
Oh, pity poor Ruben Ranzo,
Ranzo, boys, Ranzo!

Oh, Ranzo was no sailor,
He might have been a tailor,

Now Ranzo took a notion
That he would plough the ocean.

So he sold his plough and harrow
And his pony to a laidy.

He went to London City
Where the barmaids are so pretty.

And now he's Captain Ranzo,
And he ploughs the briny ocean.
//

[HANGING JOHNNY]
//
Oh, they call me Hanging Johnnie,
Hurrah, hurrah!
Because I hang so many,
So it's hang, boys, hang!

Oh first I hung my mother
And then I hung my brother.

I hung my sister Sally;
I swung her in the galley,

I hung my brother Billy
Because he seemed so silly.
//

[GOODBYE FARE YOU WELL]
//
We're homeward bound for New York Town.
Good-bye, fare you well! Good-bye, fare you well!
We're homeward bound lor New York Town.
Hurrah, my boys, we're homeward bound!

And when we arrive in the Carrier Dock,
There the boys and girls around us will flock.
And one to another you'll hear them say,
"O here comes Jack with nine months' pay!"
Now it's "John, get up and let Jack sit down,
For you know that he is homeward bound!"
//

[ROLLING HOME]
//
Call all hands to man the capstan,
See your cable runs all clear,
For very soon we'll weigh our anchor,
And for Old England we will steer.
If you all heave with a will, boys,
We will soon our anchor trip,
And upon the briny ocean
We'll steer our gallant ship.

Rolling home, rolling home!
Rolling home across the sea!
Rolling home to dear Old England,
Rolling home, dear land, to thee!
//

[JAMBOREE]
//
Now my boys, be of good cheer,
For the Irish lands are drawing near;
Tomorrow night we'll rise Cape Clear,
Oh, Jenny, get your hoe-cake done!
//

[ONE MORE DAY]
//
Only one more day, me Johnnie,
One more day!
Oh, come rock and roll me over.
Only one more day!

Only one more day a-reefing,
Only one more day a-furling.
//

[LEAVE HER JOHNNY]
//
The work was hard, the voyage long,
Leave her, Johnnie, leave her!
The seas were high, the gales were strong,
It's time for us to leave her!

The skipper's name was Bully Brown,
If you looked at him, he would knock you down,
//

[GO TO SEA NO MORE]
//
While my money did last, I went full fast;
I got drunk as drunk could be;
I was roving round all day, me boys,
And at night I did far more.
Then I made up my mind with fellows blind
To go to sea no more.

No more, no more!
No more, Oh, no more!
If ever I'm landed safe again,
I'll go to sea no more!


I'll take your advance and give you a chance
Once more, once more!
Once more, Oh, once more!
To try the sea once more!
//


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Subject: RE: The Advent and Development of Chanties
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 13 Aug 11 - 02:32 AM

1978        Rosenberg, Neil V. and Deborah G. Kodish, ed. _"Folk-songs of America": The Robert Winslow Gordon Collection, 1922-1932_. Library of Congress. LP.

Two major phases of Gordon's work seem of most interest to this topic. One is his collecting in the San Francisco Bay area; the other is his collecting in Georgia. As seen in the 1927 article of his posted above, he connected deepwater chanties with Black folk songs.

From the Introduction of the liner notes:

//
…Gordon spent much of his time collecting songs on the Oakland and San Francisco waterfronts, where he won the cooperation of stevedores, sailors, captains, hoboes, and convicts…

During his years in California, 1917-24, Gordon gathered more than one thousand shanties and sea songs, at least three hundred of which he recorded on cylinders, making his the largest collection of maritime songs then in existence. Gordon was not interested in the sheer number of texts; instead he hoped to learn from this large body of data something of the role that Afro-American traditions and popular minstrel show materials played in the development of the sea shanty. He was successful in his fieldwork, but most of his colleagues in Berkeley's English department failed to recognize it. Few of them knew what he was doing on the waterfront, and many expressed the wish that he would spend his time in more orthodox academic pursuits…
//

Here are the relevant items on this album.

Two chanties in Frisco Bay.
//
…almost certainly recorded in the San Francisco Bay Area, probably in Oakland, in the early twenties. The singer appears to have been a veteran of sailing ships, for he begins the first song with appropriate instructions to the short-haul crew.
//

First, a relative if [ROLL THE WOODPILE], in a sweating-up style.
//
…Aside from it's use as a shanty, it has stylistic and historical connections with the minstrel stage. Doerflinger (p.350) dates it from an 1887 songster, Delaney's Song Book No.3, where the words are credited to Edward Harrigan. Sheet music copyrighted in 1887 by William A. Pond & Co., New York, also credits the words to Harrigan, gives the score to Dave Braham, and adds the information "As sung in Edward Harrigan's drama, "Pete"(in Harrigan and Braham's Popular Songs As Sung by Harrigan and Hart, Volume 2, New York: Wm. A. Pond & Co., 1892, pp.51-52)…

HAUL THE WOODPILE DOWN
Gordon cyl.50, ms. Cal. 104B 

Anon,
Bay Area, California,
Early 1920s

Spoken:
Cast her up! Sweat up that weather main brace.
Fetch on there, boys, look to it, come on,
Shake a leg, all together now.

Sung:

Yankee John with his sea boots on,

Haul the woodpile down.

Yankee John with his sea boots on,

Haul the woodpile down.

Way down in Florida,
Way down in Florida,
Way down in Florida,

Haul the woodpile down.
//

[ROLL THE OLD CHARIOT]
//
"Roll the Old Chariot Along" has direct connections with black folk music of the nineteenth century, appearing in most of the standard collections of spirituals (Dett, pp. 192-93; Fenner and Rathbun, pp. 106-7; Johnson, pp. 110-11). Sandburg published a variant (pp. 196-97), and it has also been noted by collectors of shanties, including Hugill (pp. 150-51) and Doerflinger (pp. 49-50, 357). A version of this was sent to Gordon by an Adventure reader (3758) and he collected another text in California (Cal. 243). There were many black sailors on the crews of nineteenth-century vessels. They brought with them traditions of work songs, and their songs, religious and secular, were usually rhythmic and thus suited for the many kinds of gang labor needed on the big sailing ships. Gordon devoted a chapter in Folk-Songs of America to "Negro work songs from Georgia" (pp. 13-19).

ROLL THE OLD CHARIOT ALONG
Gordon cyl. 50, ms. Cal. 104A

Anon,
Bay Area, California,
Early 1920s

Roll the old chariot along

And we'll roll the old chariot along

And we'll roll the old chariot along

And we'll all hang on behind.
If the devil's in the way,
We'll roll it over him

If the devil's in the way,
Why we'll roll it over him,

If the devil's in the way,
We'll roll it over him.

And we'll all hang on behind.
//

Continuing Gordon's bio,
//
By Christmas 1925, Gordon had been living away from his family for more than a year. The separation was difficult, emotionally and financially, and he decided to move to a field station on the southern coast of Georgia--to Darien, the childhood home of Mrs. Gordon. The reunited family occupied a two-room house, and Gordon resumed work, eagerly setting out to record the Afro-American traditions of the Georgia coast. The rowing songs and the boat songs which he discovered are represented on this record by the performances of Mary C. Mann and J. A. S. Spencer. Mary Mann, a deaconess at a local black church, had organized a school in Darien in which she taught young black women the domestic skills they needed to find employment. Mary Mann had a large repertoire herself, and she encouraged her students and members of her church to contribute their songs to Gordon as well…

In July 1928, Herbert Putnam, the Librarian of Congress, appointed Gordon "specialist and consultant in the field of Folk Song and Literature." Gordon later proposed a title that he thought would appeal more to the imagination of the general public: director of the Archive of American Folk Song.
During the first year of the archive's existence, Gordon remained in Darien collecting the shouts, rowing songs, rags, reels, and turning songs that were of primary importance in the study of American folk song and of special significance in learning how folksongs start and spread….
//

One recorded example is a rowing song.
//
Mary Mann's second song is, in her words, a "boat song". Such songs are familiar in the Georgia Sea Islands. In "Negro Work Songs From Georgia," Gordon described the rowing songs which he collected. He found them "very close to spirituals—some of them are spirituals slightly made over." …
This song, like Mann's first, shares the non-stanzaic construction noted by Gordon for rowing songs. The contrast between strophic construction found in European folksong and the litany form found in Africa supports Gordon's argument that these songs in Mann's repertoire represent an early stage in the progress from African to Afro-American folksong traditions. Gordon collected several other rowing songs from Mann; he also collected another version of "Finger Ring" from a Darien informant (A285, GA75). Mann's statement at the end refers to Mrs. (Roberta Paul) Gordon, whom Mann had known since childhood.

FINGER RING
Gordon cyl. A345, Item GA122

Mary C. Mann,
Darien, Georgia,
April 12, 1926

I lost mama's finger ring, finger ring, the finger ring,

I lost mama finger ring, finger ring, the finger ring,

I lost my mama finger ring, finger ring, the finger ring.

I lost my mama finger ring, finger ring, the finger ring.

I know how, I know how to row the boat,

I know how, I know how to row the boat,

I know how to row the boat,
I can row the boat just so, finger ring, the finger ring.

I can row the boat just so, finger ring, the finger ring.
I can row, I can row the Bumble Bee,

I can how, I know how to row the Bee,

I know how to row the Bee, Bumble Bee, the Bumble Bee.
I know how to row the Bee, the Bumble Bee, the Bumble Bee.

I know how to row the boat, the Bumble Bee, the Bumble Bee.

I know how to row the boat, the Bumble Bee, the Bumble Bee.

I lost mama, I lost mama finger ring,

I lost mama, I lost my mama finger ring, finger ring,
the finger ring, finger ring, the finger ring.

I know how to row the boat, Bumble Bee, Bumble Bee.

Spoken:
This is Miss Roberta Paul's, Paul's "boat song" that I have sung just now—the "Finger Ring."…
//

Then come tracks from Georgia of shanties.
//
From rowing songs to sea shanties in black song tradition is a logical step, for during the nineteenth-century black seamen and dock workers had an important effect upon shantying traditions.
//

First version of [BLOW BOYS BLOW]:
//
J. A. S. Spencer's "Blow Boys Blow" is what Gordon called a "quick time" shanty (Gordon, p. 14) with an unusual text and a familiar refrain. Doboy sound is on the Atlantic coast of Georgia, just north of Darien.

BLOW BOYS BLOW (1)
Gordon cyl. A479, Item GA252

J. A. S. Spencer
Darien, Georgia [?]
 May 11, 1926

The prettiest girl in Doboy town,

Blow, boys, blow.

Her name is fancy Nellie Brown,

Blow, my bully boys, blow.



Heave her high and let her go,

Heave her high and let her blow,


The prettiest girl I ever knew,

She wear the red morraca shoe,

The prettiest girl I ever saw,

She's always riding the white horse,


The prettiest boy in Doboy town,

His name is Little Johnny Brown,

Heave her high and let her go,

Heave her high and jam her low,
//

Second version of [BLOW BOYS BLOW]:
//
It is not known where or when Gordon recorded A. Wilkins, who sang good versions of both "Blow Boys Blow" and "Haul Away" in a splendid voice. Adventure correspondents sent Gordon four other versions of this "Blow Boys Blow" (770, 1033, 1642, 2362). …

BLOW BOYS BLOW (2)
Gordon cyl. G100, Item Misc.188

A. Wilkins [?]
Place and date unknown

Oh, blow, my boys, for I love to hear you,

Blow, boys, blow;

Oh blow, my boys, for I long to hear you,

Blow, my bully boys, blow.

Oh, a Yankee ship dropping down the river,

It's a Yankee ship dropping down the river,

Now, how do you know she's a Yankee clipper?

Her spars and decks they shine like silver,
Oh who do you think was the chief mate of her?

Oh, Skys'l Taylor, the Frisco slugger,

And who do you think was the chief cook of her?

Oh big black Sam, the Baltimore nigger,

And what do you think we had for dinner?
A monkey's legs and a monkey's liver,

And what do you think we had for supper?

The starboard side of an old sou'wester,

//

[HAUL AWAY JOE]
//
…The testimony of sailors is that this song was one to which improvisation occurred freely, and the verses which Wilkins sings here are a mixture of the familiar (verse one) and the novel (verse two). …Gordon collected a version of this in California (Cal. 249).

HAUL AWAY
Gordon cyl. G100, Item Misc.190

A. Wilkins [?]
Eastern U. S. [?]
1930-32 [?]

Away, haul away, a-haul away, my Rosie,

Away, haul away, a-haul away, Joe.

I wish I was in Ireland, a diggin' turf an' taters,


But now I'm in a Yankee ship, a-pullin cleats [sheets] and braces,


Once I loved an Irish gal and she was double jointed,


I thought she had a double chin but I was disappointed,


Away, haul away, the old man he's a-growlin',


Away, haul away, our oats are growing mouldy;


Away, haul away, the bloody ship is rollin',

//


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Mudcat time: 4 April 11:27 AM EDT

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