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Lyr Req: The Isles of Hirta

GUEST,Duncan McNab 19 Mar 18 - 12:58 PM
GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP) 19 Mar 18 - 01:36 PM
Tattie Bogle 19 Mar 18 - 02:10 PM
GUEST,Duncan McNab 19 Mar 18 - 07:40 PM
FreddyHeadey 24 Sep 18 - 07:01 PM
Jim Dixon 02 Oct 18 - 01:03 PM
GUEST,Carole Prior 03 Oct 18 - 08:04 PM
Tattie Bogle 04 Oct 18 - 07:37 PM
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Subject: Lyr Req: The Isles of Hirta
From: GUEST,Duncan McNab
Date: 19 Mar 18 - 12:58 PM

So far I’ve been unable to track down the lyrics to The Isles of Hirta.
I’m heading off shortly to spend some time on St Kilda and would love to learn the song before going. Any help would be appreciated.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Isles of Hirta
From: GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 19 Mar 18 - 01:36 PM

Words are printed on the page along with this video on the ITMA site: Derek Williamson, singing in English: Isles of Hirta

Mick


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Isles of Hirta
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 19 Mar 18 - 02:10 PM

Carole and Alan Prior sing it: think you might know them Duncan? (But also thanks to Mick for his link).


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Isles of Hirta
From: GUEST,Duncan McNab
Date: 19 Mar 18 - 07:40 PM

Thanks guys, that brilliant.

I recorded Carole and Alan singing it at last years Falkland Traditional Festival.
So I had most of the words, but there were one or two I wasn’t sure of.
The video of Carole and Alan is on YouTube. Just search for “The Isles of Hirta”


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Isles of Hirta
From: FreddyHeadey
Date: 24 Sep 18 - 07:01 PM

video of Carole and Alan is on YouTube ...
https://youtu.be/Pf7swhfkE1s


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE ISLES OF HIRTA (from Derek Williamson
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 02 Oct 18 - 01:03 PM

I copied the lyrics from this website but made a few corrections and marked a few uncertainties:


THE ISLES OF HIRTA
As sung by Derek Williamson in a video at the Irish Traditional Music Archive, 2010.

Our islands were so wild and free.
We took our living from the sea.
Our women sang as they wove the tweed
Upon the Isles of Hirta.

CHORUS: Oh, cruel man, you breached/wreaked(?) such strife.
You killed my brother and his wife.
You’ve ta’en away my way of life
Upon the Isles of Hirta.

The wind it washed upon the rocks.
We hunted fulmar in their flocks.
The wind it made our houses rock
Upon the Isles of Hirta.

We worked in common at the chores
On puffin cliffs and poor(?) tors.
Of farming ways we could name but four
Upon the Isles of Hirta. CHORUS

We spoke the English and the Gaelic tongue.
Our sense of unity was strong
Until one day the tour boats come
To view the Isles of Hirta.

They landed in our island’s lee,
Brought influenza and TB,
And no resistance strength had we
Upon the Isles of Hirta. CHORUS

And so in city crime I fear
Nought but grief and poverty.
I wish to God that I was there
Back on the Isles of Hirta. CHORUS


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Isles of Hirta
From: GUEST,Carole Prior
Date: 03 Oct 18 - 08:04 PM

The song was written by Ken Stephens from Southampton who has written many fine songs. I believe he was inspired to write this after seeing a programme about the evacuation of St Kilda.
Alan and I were lucky enough to learn it many years ago at a Whittlebury song and ale event - back in the 1980's I think. It has always been a favourite. Nice to bump into Duncan in Portree at the end of August when he told us he had been able to sing it on Hirta during his visit.. Back from whence it came!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Isles of Hirta
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 04 Oct 18 - 07:37 PM

Great Carole! Can you possibly clear up the couple or three queries over the words as shown above in Jim Dixon's transcription? (which was what I was trying to ask you far too late on Tuesday night!)


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