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Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?

DigiTrad:
CANADA-I-O
CANADAY-I-O (2)
CANADEE-I-O


Related threads:
Chords/Tune Req: Canadee-i-o (from Nic Jones) (25)
Lyr Add: Wearing o' the Blue (3)
Chord Req: Nic Jones Tuning for Canadee-I-O (5)
Tune Req: Nic Jones Canadee-I-O Acoustic Magazine (30)
Tune Req: Canadee-i-o (Nic Jones) (31)
(origins) Origins: Canadee-I-O / Canaday-I-O (15)
Tune Req: looking for canadee-i-o tab (2)


Mathew Raymond 04 Aug 13 - 05:50 PM
GUEST,henryp 04 Aug 13 - 06:06 PM
Mathew Raymond 04 Aug 13 - 06:09 PM
Commander Crabbe 04 Aug 13 - 07:44 PM
MGM·Lion 05 Aug 13 - 01:17 AM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 05 Aug 13 - 08:48 AM
GUEST,Rev Bayes 05 Aug 13 - 01:47 PM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 05 Aug 13 - 04:28 PM
Mathew Raymond 05 Aug 13 - 04:29 PM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 05 Aug 13 - 04:41 PM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 05 Aug 13 - 04:42 PM
Steve Gardham 05 Aug 13 - 05:51 PM
Commander Crabbe 05 Aug 13 - 06:13 PM
Mathew Raymond 06 Aug 13 - 02:18 AM
Steve Gardham 06 Aug 13 - 03:54 PM
Commander Crabbe 06 Aug 13 - 08:16 PM
GUEST 07 Aug 13 - 06:36 PM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 07 Aug 13 - 07:31 PM
Steve Gardham 08 Aug 13 - 07:46 AM
Steve Gardham 08 Aug 13 - 07:57 AM
Steve Gardham 08 Aug 13 - 08:00 AM
Commander Crabbe 08 Aug 13 - 06:51 PM
Steve Gardham 11 Sep 18 - 03:40 PM
Reinhard 11 Sep 18 - 04:13 PM
Steve Gardham 11 Sep 18 - 04:18 PM
The Sandman 12 Sep 18 - 03:09 AM
GUEST,Phil d'Conch 12 Sep 18 - 03:04 PM
The Sandman 12 Sep 18 - 04:12 PM
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Subject: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Mathew Raymond
Date: 04 Aug 13 - 05:50 PM

The popular nic jones song Canadee-i-o was one the the first english folk songs I heard, and I always liked it. However something never sat right with me. In the beginning of the song she goes to sea because of the sailor lad she is in love with, however after she is found to be a woman and is rescued by the captain. After this she marries the captain. What happened to the sailor lad and why isnt he furious that the captain stole his woman? Wouldn't that be an awkward voyage? I'm hoping the fine people on mudcat can help me out with this dilemma

Mat


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: GUEST,henryp
Date: 04 Aug 13 - 06:06 PM

For to go off to sea with him;

It's not clear whether they are on the same ship

So she bargained with a young sailor boy
All for a piece of gold;

It seems to be a different sailor boy


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Mathew Raymond
Date: 04 Aug 13 - 06:09 PM

I guess it isn't clear if they're on the same ship, but why would she leave if she wasn't going with him?
I knew they weren't the same sailor boy, but it really doesn't answer my question


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Commander Crabbe
Date: 04 Aug 13 - 07:44 PM

Mathew

There is a traditional song called "Wearing O' The Blue" with very similar lyrics to the third "Canadee-i-o" listed in the DT database.

Verses three and four should explain it.

WEARING O' THE BLUE

She was born a merchant's daughter, in London she did dwell.
She dearly loved a sailor lad, she dearly loved him well.
That sailor lad was bound to sea, to join a man o' war.
And the way to get along with him was the way she did not know.

She bargained with two sailors, for each a purse of gold.
They quickly got her up on deck and down into the hold.
They dressed her up in sailor's clothes, the captain did not know.
And they soon will reach that bonny shore, of Canadee-i-o.

When her lover chanced to know, he in a passion flew.
We'll tie her hands behind her back and overboard she'll go.
We'll tie her hands behind her back, she'll die a public show.
And she ne'er will reach that bonny shore of Canadee-i-o.

Oh no, no cried the captain, that's a thing you must not do.
For if you drown that sailor boy, it's hang-ed you will be.
For if you drown that sailor boy, you'll die a public show.
And you ne'er will reach that bonny shore of Canadee-i-o.

T'was scarcely six months later, t'was less than half a year.
The captain fell in love with her, and call-ed her his dear.
He's dressed her up in satins fine, she's won a public show.
She's now the highest captain's wife in Canadee-i-o.

Come all ye pretty fair maids, a warning take by me.
And follow with your own true love, wherever he may be.
For if by chance he may prove false, there's others may prove true.
You see the honour I have won, by the wearing o' the blue.

Regards

Chris


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 05 Aug 13 - 01:17 AM

Good, full variant indeed, Chris, thank you. Explains a lot ~~ eg that the boyfriend had planned to jilt her which is why he went to sea, & was annoyed that she caught up with him. Also gets rid of the nonsensical idea that Canada [or 'Canadee-i-o"] is the name of a 'seaport town', which always jars, doesn't it?

I have nevertheless always loved Nic's version, mind.

~M~


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 05 Aug 13 - 08:48 AM

There's a version in the Bodleian that makes the boyfriend's betrayal of her, and her acknowledging it, quite explicit: A New Song Called Canada Heigho!! (along with another version called Lady's Trip to Kennedy) :


  
...

  But when her lover heard of it he flew into a rage,
  With him the crew and passengers were unwilling to engage,
  I'll tie your hands and feet he said and overboard you go,
  For you ne'er shall see that lovely place called Canada heigho.

  It's when this lady heard him her heart was filled with woe,
  She says you false-hearted young man why do you say so,
  I left my friends for love of you, not one of them did know
  And now you wish to drown me going to Canada heigho.

...

  After ploughing the raging sea the weather got calm and clear,
  The Captain fell in love with her and married her we hear
  Now she's dressed in silk and satin and bears a gallant show,
  And she's now a Captain's lady in Canada heigho

  Come all you pretty fair maids a lesson take by me,
  Pray follow you true love when he is going to sea,
  For if there is one who proves false some other will prove true,
  And see what honour I have gained by the wearing of the blue



Mick


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: GUEST,Rev Bayes
Date: 05 Aug 13 - 01:47 PM

I had always assumed that the first verse was corrupt: she was in love with some young man who had emigrated to Canada, who became conflated with the sailor she paid to secure her passage.


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 05 Aug 13 - 04:28 PM

There's a version collected by Alfred Williams in 1915 - Canada-i-o from Henry Leach, Eynsham, that has the woman try to throw her lover into prison, having dressed as a duke to get on board:

  Then she had him fettered, and handed him along,
  She said - "I'm going to confine you all in some prison strong,
  You robbed me of my liberty, I'll have you tried for life.'
  So she ventured fame and fortune all for to be his wife.


The rest is as usual: The other sailors disagree and want to throw her overboard, the Captain intervenes and saves her, she marries the Captain.


There are four version collected by Alfred Williams on the site, though they were not all complete and Williams' commented that they seemed to come from two versions. I've only had a quick look, but I think a combined text is shown for all.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Mathew Raymond
Date: 05 Aug 13 - 04:29 PM

Thank you that answered my question perfectly!
Mob mentality at its finest eh?


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 05 Aug 13 - 04:41 PM

In the version from the Forget Me Not Songster (1840), her lover tries to have her thrown overboard after discovering she is aboard.

The basic story in all versions in the same: The woman disguises herself to get on her lover's ship, either to pursue him as her lover or to have him arrested for leaving her. (She usually has some other sailor help her get on board).

When she is discovered her lover wants to get rid of her either because he isn't really interested in her or he doesn't want to be arrested. The crew want to throw her overboard, the captain intervenes and saves her. When they get to Canada she eventually marries the Captain.

So, the answer to the OP's question is that the lover she initially pursues either does not really want her and she falls in love and marries the captain instead.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 05 Aug 13 - 04:42 PM

Sorry Matthew, cross posted while I was looking at other things.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 05 Aug 13 - 05:51 PM

The earliest versions seem to be about going to Caledonia, not Canada.
And then these are based on an even longer song from the 18th century, (19 stanzas) called 'The Caledonian Maid'. This is in Fair Isabel's Garland in the British Library. Even in this the start of the story is a little sketchy and looks to be a survival from an even longer ballad. Her lover was Scottish in the army and had a commission to go back to Scotland. The next bit is confused. A troop of soldiers come by while they are taking their last farewells at which point the lover disappears mysteriously and she asks the soldiers to take her with them to Scotland offering pay. They agree intending to sell her as a slave in Scotland, but the sea? captain says no they'll kill us if we do this. At any rate we're told her lover already has a wife in Scotland. She asks the captain to disguise her as a sailor which he does and they travel to many lands. The captain has a dream in which he is told to marry her to save her. When he goes to find her in the morning the 'deceiver' has bound her hand and foot and ready to throw her in the sea. The captain and the maid have a long conversation and he offers to save her life if she will serve him when they come to Caledonia. In the later short versions c1800 he marries her.


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Commander Crabbe
Date: 05 Aug 13 - 06:13 PM

Wow! Thanks for that Steve. Now that's what you call the folk process!!

Chris


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Mathew Raymond
Date: 06 Aug 13 - 02:18 AM

Thanks to all of you, this is the reason I love mudcat.
Cheers


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 06 Aug 13 - 03:54 PM

CC
The folk process will be involved in there somewhere but a lot of it is also down to hack rewriting, or is that also part of the folk process? On second thoughts, no, don't answer this or we'll start WWIII.


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Commander Crabbe
Date: 06 Aug 13 - 08:16 PM

Steve

Ok no problem wilco.

That said I wouldn't mind a look at the Caledonian Maid, is it available on line?

Chris


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: GUEST
Date: 07 Aug 13 - 06:36 PM

It's getting rather late, CC. I'll try to make time to post it tomorrow. I doubt very much it is online. It's in a quite rare garland and I only have the single reference.

SteveG


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 07 Aug 13 - 07:31 PM

It's seems to be accessible online if you belong to one of a list of libraries: Fair Isabel's Garland. (Click the link to see the libraries).

This seems to be part of Gale's Eighteenth Century Collection online and there's a link on that page for a free trial which might let you access it.

(One of the libraries is National Library of Australia, so if there are any of out antipodean members with access they could get a copy too)


Mick


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 08 Aug 13 - 07:46 AM

Thanks, Mick, but as these are not available to plebs like me I'll try and post my copy later.


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 08 Aug 13 - 07:57 AM

11606 aa 23 (12) 4 NI Licensed and entered according to order Fair Isabel's Garland Containing Several Excellent New Songs
1 The Sailor's Love to Fair Isabel
2 Rat tat too!
3 Still from Care and thinking free.
4 The Caledonian Maid
1
Come all young Lovers unto me give ear,
Here is a strange Story as ever you did hear,
Concerning a young lass that was taken awa',
On an intent to be a wife in Caledonia.
2
Oh! my dearest deary, I must awa',
Oh! my dearest deary, I must awa',
Oh! my dearest Deary, I must awa',
A Commission to the pretty Caledonia.
3
Oh! my dearest deary, will you break my heart,
Oh! my dearest deary, will you break my heart;
For you are all the comfort that I have here awa',
Since you came from the pretty Caledonia.
4
Now these two lovers sat down to make their moan,
Then came by a troop of their own countrymen;
Who said, rise up lovers and come awa',
For you must travel to the pretty Caledonia.
5
Oh! says the captain, I know what you mean,
For your Scots Lassies spoil all our Englishmen,
There is no Scots Lassie that's bound by the law,
That can travel to the pretty Caledonia.
6
Oh! said the Lassie, I am willing for to pay,
My fraught over sea, if you will take me awa'
Oh! ye shall have the money before you go awa',
If you will take me safe to arrive at Caledonia.
7
Oh! said the deceiver, the money we will have,
And when we are over, we'll sell her for a slave;
We will take her little penny, though it be but sma',
And we will sell her for a slave in Caledonia.
8
Oh! said the captain, that will never do,
They will kill us every man, if they do know,
They will kill us every man, if they do know,
That ever we sold a slave in Caledonia.
9
But the young lassie she did not perceive,
That her own lover would her so deceive;
But thought he would marry her in taking her awa',
But yet he had a wife in Caledonia.

10
She said to the captain, make me a sailor bound,
I'll travel with thee the nations all round;
I'll be content with my portion, although it be but sma',
If you'll carry me safe to arrive at Caledonia.
11
Oh! said the captain, what will you do,
When you go along with the jolly ship's crew,
When the seas they do beat, and the winds they do blow
And you cannot get a sight of Caledonia.
12
Then they sailed east and they sailed west,
They sailed to many strange place at the last;
Where the seas they did beat, and the winds they did blow,
And they could not get a sight of Caledonia.
13
Then upon a night the captain did dream,
There came a voice to him, which call him by name,
Saying, marry the lass that you brought away,
Or she'll never get a sight of Caledonia.
14
Up in the morning the captain arose,
And straightway unto the lover he goes;
Saying, where is the lassie that you brought awa',
For I've dream'd that she was in Caledonia.
15
Oh! said the deceiver, I've bound her hand and foot,
And I have intended to throw her in the deep;
For I have a sweet wife and that you do know,
And she lives a pretty life in Caledonia.
16
Oh! then the Captain's heart was fill'd with woe
And straight unto the young lassie he did go;
Saying, what is the matter they treated you so,
When you paid your fraught to pretty Caledonia.
17
The lassie she sigh'd and said, Oh! wo's me,
That ever I was born such a death for to die;
Or if I have offended, 'tis more than I know,
Which makes me lament Caledonia.
18
Oh! woe be to that lover of mine,
Who promised to me, he'd be loving and kind;
But instead of being a friend, proves my mortal foe
Which causes me to lament Caledonia.
19
Oh! says the captain, If you take in hand,
For to serve me when you come to land,
I'll preserve you your life, and no man shall know,
And you'll have a pretty life in Caledonia.



20
Now when they had sail'd Leagues but only three,
Then the deceiver vow'd revenge for to be,
Upon the same Captain he'd work meikle woe,
He should never get a sight of Caledonia.
21
The sailor unto the Captain did go,
Saying, take care of the deceiver, and give him a blow,
Take care of the deceiver, and give him a blow,
Or you'll never get a sight of Caledonia.
22
The captain he vowed reveng'd for to be,
He took him in his arms, and he threw him in the sea.
Take a cup of cold water, although it be but sma',
And ye may drink the lassie's health in Caledonia.
23
Now when they had sailed a very short space,
They came in sight of that beautiful place,
Where the seas did not beat, nor the winds did not blow,
Now they are all safe arriv'd at Caledonia.
24
She had not been there above one Quarter of a year,
When she appeared both charming and fair;
She obtained the favour of all that did her know,
And now she lives a pretty life in Caledonia.
25
According to the promise the captain did make,
For a wife unto himself he did her take;
In silks and in sattins he made her to go,
And now she's a captain's wife in Caledonia.
26
Likewise you lovers a warning may take,
Never heed the promise deceivers may make
In flattering you so, they steal your hearts awa',
Take a warning by the Lassie of Caledonia.

(Among garlands printed at Alnwick 1792-3)


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 08 Aug 13 - 08:00 AM

CC
Yippee! It worked! The wonders of modern technology!
Notice that I neglected to summarise sts 20-26 when I posted above. Some idiot didn't turn over the page!!! You've got all of it now.


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Commander Crabbe
Date: 08 Aug 13 - 06:51 PM

Steve

Many thanks. The modern versions have certainly been highly abridged! Probably take the best part of 10 minutes to sing that one.

Thanks again

Chris


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 11 Sep 18 - 03:40 PM

I know this thread is 5 years old but I'm now working on the song for my next book. Having had a good look at all 11 versions in Greig-Duncan it's clear that the above 26 stanza version is based on something else. The Scottish versions are pretty consistent and have extra stanzas. It seems pretty clear to me that these Scottish versions and the 1790s version are based upon something earlier. This is partly evidenced by the garbled commencement to the older version. If pushed I'd say, although the voyage doesn't commence in Scotland, it's highly likely that's where the ballad originated, probably Edinburgh or Falkirk or Stirling which all produced many chapbooks in the 18thc.

There are not really many oral versions of the later Canada I O variant, a handful in southern England and about the same in North America.

I'm aware of Nic Jones' influential recording but were there others, Martin Carthy perhaps? Was Nick the first to record it. The only albums of source singers with a version are by George Upton of Sussex.
Malcolm would have answered that in a flash!


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Reinhard
Date: 11 Sep 18 - 04:13 PM

I have negative evidence only, Steve. I have recordings of seven other singers but none of them is between Harry Upton and Nic Jones; all are much later than Nic.


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 11 Sep 18 - 04:18 PM

Negative just as useful as positive. Thanks for looking.


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: The Sandman
Date: 12 Sep 18 - 03:09 AM

Steve, asfar as i am aware and i was very busy travelling allover the uk and gigging at folk clubs in the seventies and 80s , no one was singing the song on the circuit before nic jones


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: GUEST,Phil d'Conch
Date: 12 Sep 18 - 03:04 PM

Canadee-I-O, Tish Stubbs, Sam Richards, Invitation To North America: The New World Seen Through English Folk Song, Saydisc, SDL 280, LP, UK, 1977, trk. A5.

samrichards.org.uk


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Subject: RE: Canadee-i-o, the young sailor lad?
From: The Sandman
Date: 12 Sep 18 - 04:12 PM

I KNEW SAM AND TISH WELL AND RECORDED WITH THEM , I HAD FORGOTTEN ABOUT THAT RECORD ,HOWEVER I NEVER HEARD THEM PERFOREM IT LIVE


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