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Origins/Tune: By the Lightning We Lost Our Sight

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BY THE LIGHTNING WE LOST OUR SIGHT


Related thread:
Origins: Cork Harbour - on Dan Milner CD. (25)


GUEST,Tom Bliss 22 Nov 10 - 05:27 AM
maeve 22 Nov 10 - 05:53 AM
GUEST,Tom Bliss 22 Nov 10 - 11:41 AM
maeve 22 Nov 10 - 12:05 PM
GUEST,Tom Bliss 22 Nov 10 - 01:26 PM
Jack Campin 22 Nov 10 - 02:26 PM
DebC 22 Nov 10 - 02:41 PM
Jeri 22 Nov 10 - 03:27 PM
GUEST,Tom Bliss 22 Nov 10 - 04:09 PM
maeve 22 Nov 10 - 04:14 PM
Joe Offer 23 Nov 10 - 11:14 PM
Joe Offer 23 Nov 10 - 11:27 PM
Joe Offer 23 Nov 10 - 11:48 PM
Liam's Brother 28 Nov 10 - 01:08 PM
GUEST,Tom Bliss 28 Nov 10 - 01:21 PM
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Subject: Tune Req: BY THE LIGHTNING WE LOST OUR SIGHT
From: GUEST,Tom Bliss
Date: 22 Nov 10 - 05:27 AM

Anyone know of a tune for this?

Thanks

Tom


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Subject: RE: Tune Req: BY THE LIGHTNING WE LOST OUR SIGHT
From: maeve
Date: 22 Nov 10 - 05:53 AM

MMario may have the tune. See this thread:


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Subject: RE: Tune Req: BY THE LIGHTNING WE LOST OUR SIGHT
From: GUEST,Tom Bliss
Date: 22 Nov 10 - 11:41 AM

Hmm - thanks, but no tune there that I can see anyway


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Subject: RE: Tune Req: BY THE LIGHTNING WE LOST OUR SIGHT
From: maeve
Date: 22 Nov 10 - 12:05 PM

I referred to the thread in which MMario was cataloging the sound files he has that match various lyrics. The one you seek is listed although no indication was given as to whether he hasreceived the matching tune yet. As I said, MMario may have it. I have taken the liberty of contacting him on your behalf.

Maeve


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Subject: RE: Tune Req: BY THE LIGHTNING WE LOST OUR SIGHT
From: GUEST,Tom Bliss
Date: 22 Nov 10 - 01:26 PM

Thank you. Yes, that's what I meant - it is listed there, but there's no tune attached as far as I can see. It would be great if there is one - it'll save me having to make one up!


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Subject: RE: Tune Req: BY THE LIGHTNING WE LOST OUR SIGHT
From: Jack Campin
Date: 22 Nov 10 - 02:26 PM

A quick google suggests the original recording is in the archives of the Memorial University of Newfoundland. Why not ask them?


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Subject: RE: Tune Req: BY THE LIGHTNING WE LOST OUR SIGHT
From: DebC
Date: 22 Nov 10 - 02:41 PM

Dan Milner (Liam's Brother) has a tune that he recorded on his CD "Irish Songs From New England".

Debra


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Subject: RE: Tune Req: BY THE LIGHTNING WE LOST OUR SIGHT
From: Jeri
Date: 22 Nov 10 - 03:27 PM

Dan's version/song is Cork Harbor, the CD is for sale here, at Folk Legacy, and the words are here, in the DT.


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Subject: RE: Tune Req: BY THE LIGHTNING WE LOST OUR SIGHT
From: GUEST,Tom Bliss
Date: 22 Nov 10 - 04:09 PM

Ah - I thought it must have another title: The Lighning Flash, Cork Harbour, and Come All Ye Jolly Sailor Boys (bit generic that one!) - are all variants it seems.

Dan seems to have tracked down a melody fairly close to "Erin's Lovely Home" - the song is much discussed here.

That'll do for me.

Thanks all

Tom


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Subject: RE: Tune Req: BY THE LIGHTNING WE LOST OUR SIGHT
From: maeve
Date: 22 Nov 10 - 04:14 PM

I'll let MMario know.

Maeve


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Subject: Origins: By the Lightning We Lost Our Sight
From: Joe Offer
Date: 23 Nov 10 - 11:14 PM

Here's the Traditional Ballad Index entry for this song. As you can see, none of the cites sources provides a tune. The version in the Digital Tradition is from Mackenzie.

By the Lightning We Lost our Sight [Laws K6]

DESCRIPTION: The singer is on a journey from Gibraltar to England when a hurricane strikes. Sent aloft to reef the sails, he and four others are blinded when lightning strikes the mast. The storm washes several others overboard
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1883 (Smith/Hatt)
KEYWORDS: sailor storm death disability
FOUND IN: Canada(Mar)
REFERENCES (4 citations):
Laws K6, "By the Lightning We Lost Our Sight"
Mackenzie 86, "By the Lightning We Lost Our Sight" (1 text)
Smith/Hatt, pp. 76-78, "The Blind Sailor" (1 text)
DT 557, LIGHTNNG

Roud #1894
CROSS-REFERENCES:
cf. "Captain Burke" [Laws K5]
File: LK06

Go to the Ballad Search form
Go to the Ballad Index Instructions
Go to the Bibiography
Go to the Discography

The Ballad Index Copyright 2009 by Robert B. Waltz and David G. Engle.


Roud Index Search


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Subject: ADD: Come All Ye Jolly Sailor Boys
From: Joe Offer
Date: 23 Nov 10 - 11:27 PM

COME ALL YE JOLLY SAILOR BOYS

Male voice: (speaks) Alright.

Male voice: (speaks) Real come-all-ye-

Well come all ye jolly sailor boys who to the sea belong
If you'll listen to me I'll sing for you a song
I've been as fine a seaman as ever furled a sail
Until by lightning lost my sights in that last November gale

There was a wealthy merchant in the town where I was born
I own I loved his daughter and she loved me I [swear]
The pressgang came after me and I was forced to go
He sent me away to plow the sea where the stormy winds do blow

On the fourteenth of November from Cook's Harbour we set sail
Bound down to Gibraltar with a soothing pleasant gale
The wind blew fair our course did steer and back before the wind
But still my thoughts kept thinking on the girl I left behind

(Something spoken here hard to understand)

We arrived at Gibraltar and we lay ashore while there
And then bound for England the wind they did still blow fair
The very day we put to sea … set every sail
When a gale came on eclipsed the sun it blew a hurricane

(Speaks) I can't remember [the rest of this is unintelligible]

… winds still kept increasing up to a hurricane
Our skipper cried, "Make haste my boys, close reef our main topsail!"
No sooner he gave orders when up aloft we lay
Like hardy tars through gales and storms his orders to obey

Just as we reached our mainmast head a heavier flash came on
Great God I will remember this eclipse of the sun
Our main top gallant mast was split up by a ball of light
And then four seamen more by the lightning lost our sight

Now early the next morning it was dismal for to view
Our mate he was washed overboard and four more of our crew
The thunder roared tremendously and lightning fierce did flash
And swelling seas broke over us and around our ship did dash

But now thank God we're home again and landed safe on shore
Back unto Cook's Harbour to the girl whom I adore
Where I found Mary waiting so loving kind and free
And now we live in unity but her I cannot see

NOTES

Sources:

History: Seems to be a Newfoundland song. Cooks Harbour, a settlement on the Strait of Belle Isle, is mentioned.

Text notes: A sailor loves a merchants daughter but he is pressed into service. When out to sea in a storm, he is hit by lightning and loses his sight. He returns to his girl but cannot see her.

Tune notes: A rhythmically free performance that is basically 4/4 metre, with the classic phrase pattern, abba.

Performed by Morris Houlihan Accession # 78-054 NFLD 1 Tape 3A Track 1
Community: Flatrock (Newfoundland) Audio: Yes (click)
Genre: Ballad / blind lover returns

Source: MacEdward Leach and the Songs of Atlantic Canada


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Subject: ADD Version: The Blind Sailor
From: Joe Offer
Date: 23 Nov 10 - 11:48 PM

See other versions in this thread - but we still have no notation for the melody. Anybody want to transcribe a MIDI and send it to me for posting?
Thanks.

-Joe Offer-
joe@mudcat.org
Do you have enough, Tom Bliss, or should I try to talk Dan Milner into doing a MIDI for us?


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Subject: RE: Origins/Tune: By the Lightning We Lost Our Sight
From: Liam's Brother
Date: 28 Nov 10 - 01:08 PM

The version Deirdre Murtha, Bonnie Milner and I recorded is traditional. It's on Irish Songs from Old New England. Other singers on the recording include Gordon Bok, Len Graham, Frank Harte, Lou Killen, Robbie O'Connell, Sandy & Caroline Paton and Ian Robb. On it, there are some great songs and great performances. Folk-Legacy has it on their website.

All the Best,
Dan Milner


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Subject: RE: Origins/Tune: By the Lightning We Lost Our Sight
From: GUEST,Tom Bliss
Date: 28 Nov 10 - 01:21 PM

That's fantastic - thanks all.

Assuming I do use this in the show as intended, I'll be doing a midi and some dots (might spice up the tune a tad from Morris Houlihan's version though - my hero will be singing it during an 'actual' shipwreck)!

I'll submit as an when.

Tom


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