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Help: Female Rambling Sailor (many versions)

DigiTrad:
FEMALE DRUMMER
FEMALE RAMBLING SAILOR
FEMALE SAILOR BOLD
RAMBLING SOLDIER/TRIM-RIGGED DOXY
THE FEMALE DRUMMER
THE HANDSOME CABIN BOY
THE HANDSOME YOUNG SAILOR


Related threads:
Handsome Cabinboy/Galway Boy (3)
Chord Req: Handsome Cabin Boy (14)
sound lantern Handsome CabinBoy (5)
Lyr Req: Alt. words to The Handsome Cabin Boy (16)
Lyr Add: New Handsome Cabinboy song, Brunswick Dr (6)
Tune Req: Female Rambling Sailor (9)
Lyr Req: the handsome cabin boy, any ideas? (35)
req only: The handsome cabin man? / ...Boy (3) (closed)


GUEST,bobsessive@telus.net 15 Jan 01 - 01:28 PM
GUEST,Philippa 15 Jan 01 - 05:56 PM
Stewie 15 Jan 01 - 06:55 PM
Sandy Paton 15 Jan 01 - 07:09 PM
Malcolm Douglas 15 Jan 01 - 07:25 PM
GUEST,bobsessive@telus.net 15 Jan 01 - 11:59 PM
GUEST,bobsessive@telus.net 16 Jan 01 - 12:33 AM
GUEST,bobsessive@telus.net 16 Jan 01 - 12:37 AM
GUEST 23 Aug 09 - 12:08 AM
Steve Gardham 23 Aug 09 - 06:33 PM
Steve Gardham 23 Aug 09 - 06:36 PM
Steve Gardham 23 Aug 09 - 06:49 PM
GUEST,patsy, 23 Aug 09 - 07:39 PM
Mick Tems 24 Aug 09 - 03:50 AM
Mick Tems 24 Aug 09 - 04:01 AM
Steve Gardham 24 Aug 09 - 09:45 AM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 24 Aug 09 - 01:26 PM
GUEST,Patsy 24 Aug 09 - 05:55 PM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 24 Aug 09 - 07:26 PM
Steve Gardham 25 Aug 09 - 11:40 AM
Steve Gardham 25 Aug 09 - 04:27 PM
GUEST,Patsy 26 Aug 09 - 12:44 PM
Black Cat 28 Aug 09 - 04:47 PM
GUEST 28 Aug 09 - 05:17 PM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 28 Aug 09 - 05:23 PM
Steve Gardham 29 Aug 09 - 06:11 PM
GUEST,Cole 12 Dec 09 - 02:11 PM
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Subject: Female Rambling Sailor
From: GUEST,bobsessive@telus.net
Date: 15 Jan 01 - 01:28 PM

Over the years I have been able to located 10 recordings of the traditional folk song "Female Rambling Sailor." (listed below). Have I got them all?

-Catherine Peatey Australian Traditional Singsers & Musicians in Victoria, Wattle Archive Series 2 (1963)

-Shayna Karlin Soldiers and Sailors, Scorse Records (1968)

-Martyn Wyndham-Read Harry the Hawker is Dead (19??)

-Warren Fahey and the Larrikins Limejuice & Vinegar, Larrikin Records (1985)

-Ian Robb Rose & Crown, Folk-Legacy Rcords (1985)

-Rude Girls Rude Awakening, Flying Fish Records (1987)

-William Pint & Felicia Dale Port of Dreams, Self Released Record (1991)

-Sally Barker & the Rhythm Beating the Drum, Hypertension, (1992)

-Three Sheets to the Wind Grace Under Pressure, Canal Records, 1994

-Rich Lerner Trails & Bridges, Rockduster Reocrds, (1995)

Thanks for any help .....


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: GUEST,Philippa
Date: 15 Jan 01 - 05:56 PM

No, at least not if you accept many versions on the theme, for instance The Handsome Cabin Boy (recorded by Martin Certhy among others), The Female Drummer (for example, Tríona Ní Dhomhnaill). And have you come across any of the books about real woman who went to sea disguised as men?


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: Stewie
Date: 15 Jan 01 - 06:55 PM

Dave and Toni Arthur recorded it on a 1967 Transatlantic album 'Morning Stands on Tiptoe'. This album has been reissued on CD, together with their 1969 Topic album 'The Lark in the Morning' - 2 albums on a single CD. Dave and Toni Arthur 'Morning Stands on Tiptoe' World Serpent/Wooded Hill HILLCD 18.

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: Sandy Paton
Date: 15 Jan 01 - 07:09 PM

Dianne Dugaw, who teaches English literature at the University of Colorado (if my feeble memory serves me right) wrote a very scholarly study of the motif, entitled Warrior Women and Popular Balladry, 1650-1850, published by Cambridge University Press as part of their Studies in Eighteenth-Century English Literature and Thought. You might want to check it out, if you can find it in your local library. I got my copy from a bookseller in the UK.

Sandy


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 15 Jan 01 - 07:25 PM

If you're a real completist, you will of course want to know that there are some eleven nineteenth century broadside copies of the song (a little too early for sound recording, unfortunately!) at  Bodleian Library Broadside Ballads

Malcolm


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: GUEST,bobsessive@telus.net
Date: 15 Jan 01 - 11:59 PM

Stewie,

Thanks. Yes, I have that one, too. Must have slipped my mind as I was typing this request.

Thanks again

Eric


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: GUEST,bobsessive@telus.net
Date: 16 Jan 01 - 12:33 AM

Sandy,

Yes, I actually met Diane. I don't know about now, but back in the early ninties she was teaching at the University of Oregon.

Thanks for your reply

Eric


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: GUEST,bobsessive@telus.net
Date: 16 Jan 01 - 12:37 AM

Malcolm,

Thanks. Now if I can only figure out how to print copies of them, for personal use of course. Had gotten a photocopy of one once via a rec.music.dylan friend who lives in Dublin and found one at Trinity College.

Thanks for your reply.

Eric


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: GUEST
Date: 23 Aug 09 - 12:08 AM

[Question]:
I am looking for a song that my father used to sing to me when I was a young girl..It went somthing like this.
A story a story unto i'll tell
about a fair madin in boldmore did well,
the prettest young maiden you ever did see
who ventured her life on the dark rolling sea.
She dressed herself up in a young mans aray
then board the Union she shipped her self away.
She server them for three years
the forth year apart,
then she fell in love
with the captains bold heart.
They spied a spanish ship
whill sailing on the main
whiched caused them to draw on their top sail again.

the first salutation they gave a broad side
, the second salutation the captian he was slained
and to his caben the maiden did remain..

I am sure these arn't the correct words but they went some what like that. I thank you for helping me find any place where I can look for this. Patsy


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 23 Aug 09 - 06:33 PM

I recognise this by the ship name 'Union' and feel sure I will be able to identify this 'Female Sailor' song tomorrow. It's fairly common on broadsides but the references just escapes me at the moment. There is bound to be a copy in the Bodl website and it may come up in the search either using the first line or the word 'Union'.


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 23 Aug 09 - 06:36 PM

I might add some further background on your father's sources might be useful to researchers. Where did he learn it? Where was he from? In what context did he sing it? Do you remember the tune he used?


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 23 Aug 09 - 06:49 PM

Don't bother with the Bodl. Tried both suggestions and neither worked. Will check my own indexes tomorrow. Your first line also occurs in 'The Female Captain' but that's a different female sailor ballad.


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: GUEST,patsy,
Date: 23 Aug 09 - 07:39 PM

what a nice suprise to hear from all you nice people. To answer the question of where my father was from-- he was born in 1905 in okla. the song came from my grandmothers side and she was born in 1874 in kansas- her mother came from ohio by way of ky, and her father from ind. to kansas. Yess I know the tune if it's right. The familes sang a lot in those days and Dad sang a lot of them to me. my thanks to all of you out there in e-mail land. Patsy


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: Mick Tems
Date: 24 Aug 09 - 03:50 AM

Here's an unusual Welsh ballad, Betsy Williams. This well-to-do girl fell in love with her father's coachman, and her father forbade her never to see him again. She ran away to sea, disguised as a sailor...


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Subject: Lyr Add: BETSY WILLIAMS
From: Mick Tems
Date: 24 Aug 09 - 04:01 AM

Sorry - I might've pressed something. Betsy Williams is in the Gaianydd Williams Collection in Cardiff Library (or was; Cardiff Council's policy with rare and valuable reference books amounts to sheer Attila-the-Hun vandalism:

1. Come near, you lads and lasses all, and listen to my song,
About my strange adventures, I'll not detain you long;
Misfortune has befallen me through losing a young man,
Who was well-built and handsome too, against my fathers' plan.

2. My father was a nobleman of credit and renown,
A stately mansion he did own not far from Cardiff town;
I was his only daughter, my mother she was dead,
And I was like a princess, so richly clothed and fed.

3. My schooling was the very best that money could embrace,
And midst the lords and ladies fair I played my part with grace;
The sons of lords and marquesses were ready at my call,
For I the fairest damsel was amidst the ladies all.

4. But none of them my fancy drew my husband for to be,
For father's coachman, Arthur Gwynne, was truly loving me;
I loved him too, without a doubt, for he was tall and fair,
Each other often we did meet at night when none was near.

5. At last my father was informed of Arthur's love for me,
And he to India far was sent across the angry sea;
When I was told that he had gone without a last goodbye,
My heart was breaking and my grief so great I could not cry!

6. For many months my bed I kept, in a low state I lay,
But one could comfort me, but one, and he was far away;
When summer came and health restored, I roamed about once more,
But one fine day I ran away and sailor's clothes I wore.

7. A man of war I went aboard to sail to India's main,
But cruel pirates came and took us prisoners back to Spain;
In prison dank we long were kept, till peace at last did reign,
To India's shore I sailed once more to seek my love again.

8. The stormy winds on us did blow, the ship began to sink,
To ships we were obliged to go with little food or drink;
So far from land out boat was gone, we could not reach the shore,
And many died from hunger's pangs, exhausted was our store.

9. Oh, horrid it is now to think where hunger did us drive,
We threw up lots, one was to die, the rest to keep alive;
Oh cruel fate! On me it fell – a painful death to meet,
And tome came the bosun bold to bind my hands and feet.

10. But as my sailor's garb he tore, my female form he saw,
He stood abashed, his colour changed, and looked quite struck with awe.
When in my face he looked, he said: "Can this Miss Betsy be?"
And in his fainting arms I fell – for Arthur Gwynne was he.

11. When to my senses I returned, I heard the captain call,
"We're waiting, Gwynne, for you to do your duty to us all."
"Captain," said Arthur, bold and clear, "my long-lost love I've here,
I'll sacrifice my worthless life – but spare this one so dear."

12. "Well," said the captain, "we will wait an hour longer now,
To see what Providence will do for these lovers sweet true."
Some minutes passed, when lo, a ship came slowly into sight,
My life was saved, and Arthur's too, and we were happy quite.

13. London was reached in a few weeks, my father met us there,
Forgave us both, and took us home, and married now we are.
My husband's rich and very kind, and glories in his wife,
My children also know full well the story of my life.


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 24 Aug 09 - 09:45 AM

Okay, found it, Patsy.
It's actually fairly common in oral tradition. The reason I didn't recognise it straight away is because the broadside version I was looking at started at the 3rd verse and didn't have the reference to the 'Union'. On the longer broadsides it's called 'The Female Captain' or 'The Female Sea Captain'. The broadside I was looking at calls it 'Down by the Spanish Shore'. It is Roud 492 in the Roud Indexes if you want to go on the Roud Index website at the EFDSS. Laws gave it the number N4. There are American versions from Michigan, Nova Scotia, and OHIO! In Mary Eddy's Ohio book your Boldmore is of course Baltimore. I can post this version for you if necessary, but now you can identify the song I'd check the DT first.


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Subject: Lyr Add: PRETTY POLLY (trad Michigan)
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 24 Aug 09 - 01:26 PM

There is one thread Female Captain, related to this. It refers to the DT Songs: As We Were A Sailing and the external reference to The Rainbow version as sung by Martin Carthy (link now dead).

I give the Michigan version of the song below; the girl's from London rather than Baltimore in this one.

Mick



PRETTY POLLY

A story, a story, to you I will tell,
'Tis of a fair damsel in London did dwell.
The truth of the story I mean you shall hear,
How she ventured her life for the sake of her dear.

This fair maid was taught for to write and to read,
Likewise for to cipher as far as she had need.
She served her twelve months with an unyielding heart
Until she had learned the mariner's art.

Early one morning pretty Polly arose,
She dressed herself up in a suit of men's clothes,
She dressed herself up in her royal estate,
And on board the Union she shipped herself mate.

We served our twelve months all on the seashore.
We served our twelve months and I think a little more
Until these bold admirals came plowing o'er the main
Which caused us to hoist up our topsails again.

We soon overtook then, the ocean being wide,
The first salutation gave them a broadside.
They gave us another as good as we sent,
For to sink one another was all our intent.

'Twas broadside for broadside these Frenchmen did pour
Until we had exchanged twenty broadsides or more,
But the first or second broadside our captain was slain,
And this fair maid was forced in his place to remain.

'Twas three dreadful hours in battle severe,
They scarce had a man on their deck that could steer,
They scarce had a man that could fire off a gun,
And out of the scupper holes the blood it did run.

"For quarter, for quarter", these Frenchmen did cry.
"There is no quarter", was this fair maid's reply,
"The very best of quarter we can you afford
Is to sink, swim, or burn, boys, or jump overboard".

Now we've drowned those Frenchmen in the height of their pride
While their French ship mounted sixty bright guns on a side.
And our old English ship carried but thirty and three,
Yet so bravely we overcame our French enemy.

It's now we'll return to old England with speed.
Sweet William fif not know his true lover indeed,
Nor did she discover herself upon him
Till she'd hauled up her ship and had paid off her men.

Pretty Polly's now married, she's married we hear.
The Queen settled on her five hundred pounds a year.
'Tis all for to maintain her as we have been told;
Besides she's maintained in bright raiments of gold.

Come all pretty fair maids, wherever you may be,
If ever you should chance to sail on the sea,
Don't never lack for courage, be courageous and bold,
'Twill always maintain you in bright raiments of gold.

Come, all ye departers, here's a glass of good wine,
I'll drink a health to your true love, pray drink one to mine.
Here's a health to that lady, that lady of fame,
That was captain of the ship called the Union by name.

Source: Emelyon Elizabeth Gardner: Ballads and Songs of Southern Michigan

Notes say: "The present text is from the Lambertson manuscript. Both
Mr.John and Mr.Charles Lambertson remembered hearing their mother
sing this song."


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: GUEST,Patsy
Date: 24 Aug 09 - 05:55 PM

Steve Thankyou for your help, I tried to go on the site you mentioned (Roud index) and I don't know to get to the words. Being old dosen't help me. I also received a song from Mick pearce and some of the words in it were close but the name Baltimore was not there and Spanish ship was not there also. Mabe this song that dad sang was a version of both of them. I would know if I could get on the site you spoke of and could read the words. Thanks so much for your help and a thankyou to Mick also


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 24 Aug 09 - 07:26 PM

Patsy - the Roud Index is just that - an index that lets you find where the various versions of songs are written down, but doesn't actually contain any of the song words. Steve was suggesting that by using the index you could find which books had versions of the song.

I don't have access to the Ohio version, but if Steve does, I suggest it might be best if he posts it and see if it's nearer the version you remember.



The Michigan version I posted is very similar to a broadside at the Bodleian:
Female Captain - Harding B16(93a)

The version that Alfred Williams collected can be found on the Wiltshire Council Community site:
Aboard The Resolution.

(Neither of these are ones you're looking for Patsy).

Mick


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 25 Aug 09 - 11:40 AM

Will post Ohio version later tonight after tea!


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE FEMALE WARRIOR (trad Ohio)
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 25 Aug 09 - 04:27 PM

From Ballads and Songs from Ohio by Mary O Eddy, 1939
The Female Warrior
From Mrs S T Topper, Ashland, Ohio
1
A story, a story to you I will tell
Concerning a damsel that in Baltimore did dwell,
As beautiful a creature as ever I did see;
Oh, sh ventured her life for the sake of her dear.
2
She dressed herself in man's array, all fitted for the sea;
On board of the Union she shipped herself away;
She served three years, and of the fourth a part,
Till at length she had learned the mariners' art.
3
And it's when she had landed all on the Scottish shore,
Where drums they do rattle and cannons loudly roar,
She spied a British admiral a-playing on the main,
Which caused her to haul on her topsail again.
4
The first salutation she gave them a broadside,
The second salutation her brave captain was slain;
Sh fought them so courageously with both sword and gun,
That at length through portholes the blood began to run.
5
For quarters, for quarters, the enemy cried;
"No quarters, no quarters," this damsel replied,
"The very best quarters that I can afford,
To fight, sink or swim, my boys, or jump overboard."
6
And it's now we have gained the victory, we will stake a glass of wine;
Here is a health to your true love, and not forgetting mine;
And here is also a health to the girl renowned by fame,
She is a captain on board of the ship Union by name.

The longest version I have seen also names the ship as the Union and this is of 10 stanzas and can be seen in Manchester Central Library under the title 'The Female Captain'. A version I have in an American Songster is also named 'The Female Warrior' and has the same 6 stanzas as above. In some versions the ship is named 'The Rainbow'. Versions from the early 19th century vary enough to suggest the song had already been popular for a number of years by then, so it's pretty certain the ballad is at least late 18th century.


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: GUEST,Patsy
Date: 26 Aug 09 - 12:44 PM

To Steve, Thank you so much!! This is the song. Some of the words are a little different than dad had but as it was passed down things change. I am so glad that I now have the correct words. I don't know how you did it but my thanks to you. All others who sent me messages Thannks also. There is another song I would like to get. It goes like this. Some mother's son lies burried in a unknown soilders grave. Some mother's boy, here pride and joy, marched away so strong and brave. There in the raging battle his life he could not save, and so to day he lies in a unknown soilders grave. I am trying yo collect these songs for my children. There grandfather was a special man and I am trying to put togeather the things I rember about him.He was a Artist, a Poet and a very "gentle man". Thanks again. Patsy


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: Black Cat
Date: 28 Aug 09 - 04:47 PM

Well I joined you all and am known by Black Cat because I'm the owner of two black cats and Patsy was already taken. Thanks to all of you who helped me in finding the song The female warrior.


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: GUEST
Date: 28 Aug 09 - 05:17 PM

If it's the same song you're after (the title at least is the same) there's an excellent version by Ian Robb

Cheers,

Weasel


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 28 Aug 09 - 05:23 PM

Patsy - welcome to the Cat (as it's often called).

I don't think I can help with your last request, but you'll probably find it better to start a new thread with the request in it. In general, it's better to have a new thread for each song you're looking for, with something helpful in the thread title like the song title or the first line. That way it's easier for people to see your request; not everyone looks at every thread, and having the new request in a thread for a different song might mean your new request will be overlooked.

Now you're a member you can start your own thread - click the Create a New Thread link on the forum main page (it's to the left of the filter box). You'll get a new page and you should select Lyrics Request from the Common Prefix drop down, and fill in the Title box, then press the Create Thread and Compose a New Message button. You'll get another page with a box like this where you can type in anything else about your request. Press the Submit Message button to finish creating the thread. You can preview your message before submitting it by ticking the Preview box next to the Submit button before pressing the Submit. You'll then see the preview as it will appear. If you're happy press the Submit button again (without ticking the Preview box), otherwise you can edit your text and Submit/Preview again.

You might also want to read the FAQ - there's a link for that near the top of the forum page.

Good luck with the other request (this forum is really good at finding songs, even non-folk songs!).

Mick


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 29 Aug 09 - 06:11 PM

Patsy,
In direct contrast to your previous song this one looks to be much more recent. Could be American Civil War although its style is more circa WWI, could even be WWII. The title 'Unknown Soldier's Grave' doesn't occur in Kilgarriff, a hefty book which catalogues many Music Hall songs 1860-1920. Two broadside songs titled 'The Soldier's Grave' don't appear to be your song.


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Subject: RE: Help: Female Rambling Sailor
From: GUEST,Cole
Date: 12 Dec 09 - 02:11 PM

Does anyone have an Mp3 of the Rude Girls singing Female Rambling Sailor??

Please contact me

nldr@aol.com


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