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Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas

GUEST,Jon 28 Mar 01 - 07:19 AM
Michael in Swansea 28 Mar 01 - 07:30 AM
GUEST,Jon 28 Mar 01 - 01:36 PM
GUEST,Ulm G 28 Mar 01 - 02:02 PM
MMario 28 Mar 01 - 02:08 PM
GUEST,Roll&Go-C 28 Mar 01 - 03:01 PM
GUEST,Roll&Go-C 28 Mar 01 - 03:37 PM
GUEST,Jon 29 Mar 01 - 02:30 AM
Dave the Gnome 29 Mar 01 - 03:02 AM
Dave the Gnome 29 Mar 01 - 03:04 AM
IanC 29 Mar 01 - 03:21 AM
GUEST,Roll&Go-C 29 Mar 01 - 08:14 AM
IanC 29 Mar 01 - 08:23 AM
Dave the Gnome 29 Mar 01 - 08:27 AM
GUEST,Roger the skiffler 29 Mar 01 - 08:27 AM
IanC 29 Mar 01 - 08:37 AM
MartinRyan 29 Mar 01 - 09:49 AM
Dave the Gnome 29 Mar 01 - 10:11 AM
Dave the Gnome 29 Mar 01 - 10:13 AM
GUEST,Roll&GO-C 29 Mar 01 - 11:49 AM
GUEST,Jon 29 Mar 01 - 12:51 PM
GUEST,Roll&Go-C 29 Mar 01 - 01:18 PM
GUEST,Jon 29 Mar 01 - 01:46 PM
GUEST,Jon 29 Mar 01 - 01:50 PM
GUEST,Roll&Go-C 29 Mar 01 - 02:16 PM
MMario 29 Mar 01 - 02:23 PM
GUEST,Roll&Go-C 29 Mar 01 - 02:30 PM
GUEST,Jon 29 Mar 01 - 02:31 PM
Malcolm Douglas 29 Mar 01 - 04:02 PM
GUEST,Roger the skiffler 30 Mar 01 - 02:45 AM
GUEST,Roll&Go-C 30 Mar 01 - 11:40 AM
GUEST,Hughie Jones Family 31 Mar 01 - 04:53 AM
GUEST,Roll&Go-C 31 Mar 01 - 09:24 AM
Snuffy 31 Mar 01 - 09:37 AM
GUEST,Roll&Go-C 31 Mar 01 - 11:10 AM
CRANKY YANKEE 31 Mar 01 - 12:22 PM
CRANKY YANKEE 31 Mar 01 - 02:21 PM
Susanne (skw) 31 Mar 01 - 05:57 PM
GUEST,jan L 31 Mar 01 - 05:59 PM
Susanne (skw) 31 Mar 01 - 06:00 PM
GUEST,Roll&Go-c 01 Apr 01 - 10:15 AM
Scuttlebutt 01 Apr 01 - 06:28 PM
GUEST,Roll&Go-C 01 Apr 01 - 07:24 PM
Dave the Gnome 02 Apr 01 - 04:37 AM
GUEST,Jon 03 Apr 01 - 03:54 AM
radriano 10 Apr 01 - 06:41 PM
radriano 10 Apr 01 - 06:44 PM
GUEST,Roll&Go-C 11 Apr 01 - 11:01 AM
Abby Sale 11 Apr 01 - 04:39 PM
Richard from Liverpool 31 Mar 11 - 10:56 AM
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Subject: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Jon
Date: 28 Mar 01 - 07:19 AM

Has anyone got the lyrics to The Champion of the Seas?

All I can remember is the start:

As I was walking down Park Lane a wearing of my shoes I went into the shipping office to see what was the news. The Ships Master he said to me, get on your blooming knees We'll have none of you loungers tuch us in the Champion of the Seas

And the end: I'll walk the streets of Liverpool until my feet do freeze Then I'll sign myself once more abord the Champion of the Seas

The Champion of the Seas was a 250 ft Black Ball Line clipper, weighing 2500 tons, that was abandoned off Cape Horn through leaking because of dry rot in 1877. I can find plenty about the ship, but I can't find the song lyrics at all.

Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks in advance

Jon


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: Michael in Swansea
Date: 28 Mar 01 - 07:30 AM

I know Hughie Jones has recorded a "Champion of the Seas" on his "Ditty Bag" tape / cd.

Mike


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Jon
Date: 28 Mar 01 - 01:36 PM

Thanks, I have ordered it, but amazon say it will take a while to deliver.

Jon


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Subject: Lyr Add: CHAMPION OF THE SEAS
From: GUEST,Ulm G
Date: 28 Mar 01 - 02:02 PM

Here it is:

CHAMPION OF THE SEAS

As I was rolling down Park Lane Wearing of my shoes
I stepped into the shipping office to hear what was the news
The shipping master said to me "get on your bloomin' knees"
Lets have none of you loungers touch us in the Champion of the Seas
In the Champion of the Seas, in the Champion of the Seas
Lets have none of you loungers touch us in the Champion of the Seas

We were Melbourne bound in '54 December gales did blow
The sheets were hard as iron from the driving hail and snow
And then bold Captain Newlands cried this is just a breeze
We'll prove the name Black Ball Line in the Champion of the Seas
In the Champion of the Seas, in the Champion of the Seas
We'll prove the name Black Ball Line in the Champion of the Seas

Some times upon that trip boys, I thought I'd loose my mind
I started thinking sadly of the ones I'd left behind
But thoughts of Maggie May boys, or anyone you please
I'd trade them all with pleasure for the Champion of the Seas
Oh the Champion of the Seas, oh the Champion of the Seas
I'd trade them all with pleasure for the Champion of the Seas

Now the voyage it is over, to Liverpool we've come
I know a house in Brunswick Road with Brandy Gin and Rum
Going to walk the streets of Liverpool until me feet do freeze
Aye before we sail again aboard the Champion of the Seas
In the Champion of the Seas, in the Champion of the Seas
Aye before we sail again aboard the Champion of the Seas

HTML line breaks added. --JoeClone, 2-Jun-02.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: MMario
Date: 28 Mar 01 - 02:08 PM

next question. anyone have the tune?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Roll&Go-C
Date: 28 Mar 01 - 03:01 PM

Thanks for posting the results of the hunt for all to admire. Yes, a tune would be nice. Looks like a promising sea song.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Roll&Go-C
Date: 28 Mar 01 - 03:37 PM

After mulling over the lyrics a while I find that "Brennan on the Moor"/"Lovely Athens Queen" works well. Also in the first line "wearing out my shoes" makes more sense if that is important. I also find that "me boys" works better than just "boys" in terms of balancing the line. Anyway, thanks for turning this one over. Any clue where it originally came from?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Jon
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 02:30 AM

Thanks for the words, I have coppied them out now, never to be forgotten. I know the tune my grandfather used, his dad was a sailor on the Champion, so I guess it is original. I will try and make a midi up over the weekend, and shove it on my site so you can hear it if you want.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 03:02 AM

In the verison I know the last bit of the first verse goes -

The shipping master sez to me get on your blue DB's, We'll have none of your lime-juice touches in the Champion of the Seas.

Blue DB's refers to the blue double-breasted (DB) jacket worn by sailors. Why would a ships master ask a recruit to get on his knees??? Lime juice touches makes sense - English sailors were called 'Limeys', by the Americans in particular. Lime juice touches would be refering to what this shipping master thought was the 'malingering' way the English got a daily lime ration. I have never heard 'loungers' used in this context and suspect it is a more modern expression.

Makes even more sense when you read the following about the Blackball line -

"The ships were famous for their fast passage and excellent seamanship. However, they were also famed for their fighting mates and the brutal treatment of seamen. (Western Ocean seamen were called "Packet Rats"). Many ships bore the name "bloodboat". Most of the seamen hailed from New York or were Liverpool-Irish."

Cheers

Dave the Gnome


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 03:04 AM

Addendum -

Why would a ships master ask a recruit to get on his knees???

Apart from the obvious thing that sailors are renowned for....

But I don't think the master would be so forward on a first date;-)

dtG


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: IanC
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 03:21 AM

Question of authorship.

The song has apparently only been recorded by The Spinners and a number of Scottish pipe bands, who seem to have got hold of the tune and decided they like it.

The British Library (Cadensa) attributes it to Trad. in the Spinners' recordings but I can't find it elsewhere, neither in broadsides nor in the various ballad indexes.

Is it another of Hughie Jones' masterpieces (like Ellen Vannin) or is it truly traditional?

Cheers!
Ian


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Roll&Go-C
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 08:14 AM

Dare I ask what's a "touche"? I probably already know what the punsters will come up with...


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: IanC
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 08:23 AM

Roll&Go

I think touches is the plural of touch!

Cheers!
Ian


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 08:27 AM

Touche? as in Touch?

Touches as in touches something or artistic touches?

Bit of web mis-translation going on here or was the question with a *BG* R&G-C?

(Say it with an English accent instead of French if it still don't make sense!)

DtG


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Roger the skiffler
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 08:27 AM

I'm sure you've thought of it, but it might be in Spin magazine or the compiled "Folk songs from Spin" the Spinners put out. I remember them singing it with Hughie in the lead. I have a couple of the songbooks, I'll check for attribution if it's in there (if I remember when I get home).


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: IanC
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 08:37 AM

This is probably your meaning.

(soft) touch : noun one who is easily imposed on or taken advantage of

Cheers!
Ian


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: MartinRyan
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 09:49 AM

"you loungers touch us" ??? I'd lay odds that started life as "you lousy touchers" or something similar!

Regards


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 10:11 AM

lime-juice touches 5/4 lousy touchers 5/2 lounging teachers - 5/1 loungers touch us - 10/1 lame-duck butchers - 12/1 15/1 Bar.

Any odds on Blue DB's or Bloomin' knees???

Honest Dave All bets currently void pending stewards enquiry....


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 10:13 AM

I'll try the line breaks this time - AHA! That gives me another...

lime-juice touches 5/4
lousy touchers 5/2
lounging teachers - 5/1
loungers touch us - 10/1
lame-duck butchers - 12/1
line-break catchers
15/1 Bar.

Any odds on Blue DB's or Bloomin' knees???

Honest Dave All bets currently void pending stewards enquiry....


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Roll&GO-C
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 11:49 AM

Touche´! Once again inquiring minds get fed.

I'd really like to see this song tracked down to some printed source; I'm surprised I haven't run across it before. Sounds like something Ken Stephens might have written but it probably goes back to an earlier sea songs revivalist.

I still would not be surprised if the tune were similar to Brennan on the Moor. Wanna lay a bet?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Jon
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 12:51 PM

OK I showed it to my mum, she said:

She remembers it being sung by my Great Grandad, so it isn't the spinners.

Dave the gnome is probably right about Blue DBs, but (in my mum's words) he's a typical bloody collonial! At least us Liverpool Micks didn't get scurvy. Liverpool Seamen regarded the sailors from London as 'soft southerners' and called them "Limehouse Dandys". So my mum reckons it is Limehouse touches. She also said that the singer had to be a Limehouse dandy, because Liverpool seamen didn't wear shoes, they dressed properly, on land they wore clogs.

She also said that The Black Ball Line got its name from the fact that they started in business by transporting convicts, (I wonder if it should be Black Ball & Chain Line) They were called bloodboats because of this, so the quote, to quote my mum is **** (censored). The Champion was the fastest ship of her days, and the Line employed only the best seamen to man her, they wouldn't have kept the good crews by treating them like shit. If they didn't have the best crews, they wouldn't have got the best speeds, the champion did Liverpool to Melbourne in 83 days.

The Champion was a cargo clipper, not a packet, so the crew were not packet rats.

Each ship usually employed a person, who was a token seaman, (didn't actually do any work), he was in fact a bare knuckle fighter for inter-ship matches.

There were no Americans on the Champion, they were mostly Liverpool Irish. Although It was built in the States, it was built for an English company, and didn't visit America again until after it was sold off.

Lastly, she said My great grandfather, like the rest of the crew, got a lime ration from the line which was standard practice, and wrecks the idea of lime juice touches.

She also said she still has somewhere his paybook, can't wait to see it.

Regards

Jon


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Roll&Go-C
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 01:18 PM

So "Great Grandfather time" would date the song back to the mid 19th century?

First time I ever heard of the Black Ball Line ever transporting convicts. The ships did have a prominant black ball logo on their mains'ls. According to Full Hold & Splendid Passage by Bill & Gene Bonyun, the Black Ball Line of packet ships was established in 1817 by a group of New York merchants and ran only from Liverpool to New York. Maybe there was another Black Ball Line that went out to Australia. Anyone got more clues?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Jon
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 01:46 PM

Champion of the Seas: Extreme Clipper Ship built by Donald McKay, East Boston for the Black Ball Line, Liverpool. It was a 252' long clipper and 2500 tons. Figurehead was a sailor with a hat in his right hand, and his left stretched out. Painted black with blue water ways. Had three decks, bottom two cargo, top passenger.

1854 April 9 Launched East Boston 1854 June New York - Liverpool Capt Newlands 29 days 1854 Oct 11 - Dec 26 Maiden Voyage Liverpool - Melbourne 75 days, during which a 24 hour run of 465 miles was recorded 1855 Melbourne - Liverpool 84 days 1855 Liverpool - Melbourne 83 days 1855 Melbourne - Liverpool (arrived Jan 56) 90 Days 1856 Liverpool - Melbourne 85 days 1857 Portsmouth - Bay of Bengal (troop Run) 101 days 1860 Melbourne - Liverpool 85 days 1866 Sold to Thomas Harrison but chartered back for more voyages, then put into general trading 1874 sold to Cassels of Liverpool for £7000 when it was discovered that it had dry rot (suckers) 1875 Hong Kong - San Fransisco 39 days 1975 San Fransisco - Callao 45 Days 1877 Abandoned off Cape Horn because of extreme leaking (dry rot) with a cargo of guano, crew saved by British Barque "Windsor"

The question has to be, when it was abandoned, why was it carrying a cargo of shit?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Jon
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 01:50 PM

Why doesn't it keep my s in when I send?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Roll&Go-C
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 02:16 PM

Jon, thanks for the details. Still unsure of The Black Ball Line status, although she may well have been originally built and designed for that run.

There were few cargoes as vile to deal with than guano, which was usually loaded from islands off-shore of Peru and then sold as fertilizer.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: MMario
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 02:23 PM

and it was valuable -


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Roll&Go-C
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 02:30 PM

Well, there definately was a Black Ball Line running between Liverpool and Australia; another clipper "The Queen of the Colonies" (formerly "Wizard") was on that run for that line when she was wrecked in 1874.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Jon
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 02:31 PM

Thanks for that. I feel enlightened, but I still think I'd have had a clothes peg to put on my nose!

Is the colour scheme of the Champion the same as the American Black Ball line? All black with blue water lines?

There seem to have been two Extreme Clippers built for this run, the other was called the James Baines I believe.

Why can't I get it to cursor return when I want it?

Regards

Jon


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 04:02 PM

<br> for a line-break in html, not <cr>!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Roger the skiffler
Date: 30 Mar 01 - 02:45 AM

OK, I've looked at the Spinners' Songbook (no publication date but internal evidence suggests after 1964. Published by Essex Music ) version. The attribution is "new words and new music by Francis K. Bosworth" which I believe is the name given to the group's own authorship as Paul Campbell was for the Weavers.
The rubric says: "this fo'c'sle song was collected in part from a retired sea captain's widow by Jaqueline McDonald. Hugh Jones has added a verse and adapted elsewhere. The ship, Captain Newlands and the Black Ball Line are all historical figures. "Blue DBs" and "lime juice touches" are there but not Ulm's third verse. Copyright 1964 Essex music. It mentions its reputation for speed but doesn't mention cargoes.
RtS


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Roll&Go-C
Date: 30 Mar 01 - 11:40 AM

Anyone else find a reference to two Black Ball Lines, one between Liverpool and New York and the other between Liverpool and Australia? Maybe there was a Blackwall Dock and everyone got confused! Where, or when, did I leave my time machine? Remember, the hunt is half the fun!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Hughie Jones Family
Date: 31 Mar 01 - 04:53 AM

Ok Ok its about time to sort this one out !

The words were originally part of an old song - I wrote the present version and it was recorded by the Spinners and I often sing this during my current solo career ! I included it on the first solo release "Hughies Ditty Bag" and the lyrics are in the accompanting songbook.

These are both available from "The Chantey Cabin" see the website WWW.chanteycabin.co.uk

Any more questions ?

HJ


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Roll&Go-C
Date: 31 Mar 01 - 09:24 AM

Hughie, "The Chantey Cabin" looks like a great resource and I will be ordering several supplies.

Do your notes to the song in your songbook describe where the "old song" came from, and what it looked like before you set to work on it? Was there an "old tune"? Or what tune did you model yours after? If your songbook has those answers, you need not respond here. If not, please share. I might even trade you an "old song" back that you've never run across, with notes.

Oh, and do you know if there were two Blackball lines?

Cheer'ly,
Charlie


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: Snuffy
Date: 31 Mar 01 - 09:37 AM

Definitely 2 Blackball lines - read about them both in Stan Hugill's Shanties of the 7 Seas


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Roll&Go-C
Date: 31 Mar 01 - 11:10 AM

Thanks, Snuffy! Well, I should have checked my copy instead of leafing through all my other nautical books, but it was fun any way! Learned a lot more about guano if anyone is thirsting for such knowledge; we could start a new thread.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: CRANKY YANKEE
Date: 31 Mar 01 - 12:22 PM

There's another song, "The Grey hound" which describes the ship named, "Greyhound" as "The champion of the seas." It's unlikel;y that a ship would be named "THE Champion of the seas". It would be named "Champion of th e Seas" But this is really nit picking . The only ship I've ever heard of with the word, "The" in the name is, H.M.A.V. "The Bounty" (HMAV, His Majesty's Armed Vessel) There never was an H.M.S. Bounty. HMS is strictly reserved for warships, which "The Bounty was not.

You don't have snow and hail together, Hail is a hot weather phenomenon. Sleet is a cold weather phenomenon and would easily be associated with snow. But, then, this is just more nit picking . Fsorget I mentioned it. MaFazoo is ready to hit me with a "blivet"


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: CRANKY YANKEE
Date: 31 Mar 01 - 02:21 PM

To whom it may concern.
To this day, American "Windbag" sailors refer to English seamen, fondly, as "Lime juice sailors" or simply "Lime Juicers'.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: Susanne (skw)
Date: 31 Mar 01 - 05:57 PM

This is what the Spinners had to say about the song when they recorded it:
[1970:] This came to us in part as a two verse song about The Sovereign of The Seas. [This] ship was so unpopular that her crew set her on fire - twice! However, her sister ship was a different proposition, so a change of title and two new verses gave us the present song. (Notes 'The Spinners Are In Town')
Seems she was called the 'Champion of the Seas' after all!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,jan L
Date: 31 Mar 01 - 05:59 PM

Hughie was here with us today and has now gone away for a few days. But will be staying with us again in about 10 days.

The only other interesting item is that the original ship was in fact the " Sovereign of the Seas" and the title was changed to Champion with the usual poetic licence !

Re the Black Ball line - the line was owned by William Baines of Liverpool - he really did have a captain Bully Forbes

The other famous line is that the sailors on Black Ball ships were known by their red topped boots.

may you always run before the wind

Jan L


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: Susanne (skw)
Date: 31 Mar 01 - 06:00 PM

Forgot to say thanks for all the info in this thread, to Dave the Gnome in particular. The 'blue DBs' had me puzzled for 30 years, as 'The Spinners Are In Town' was my first ever folksong album.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Roll&Go-c
Date: 01 Apr 01 - 10:15 AM

Thanks! That just about closes the book on this fine song, but at the risk of sounding like a broken record (CD? MP3 File?) where did the TUNE come from? I've got big money riding on this!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: Scuttlebutt
Date: 01 Apr 01 - 06:28 PM

The tune used by The Spinners was in the main written by Hughie Jone but was based on an older song - do you want me to dig out all the details ?

Jan


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Roll&Go-C
Date: 01 Apr 01 - 07:24 PM

Jan, sure would appreciate at least a hint about the tune, and I'm sure others would also appreciate more information.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 02 Apr 01 - 04:37 AM

To all you doubters about 'lime-juice touches' .....

HAH!

And who's a typical collonial, Jon??? I'm British through and through (Apart from Russian and Polish grandparents but they don't count coz they CHOSE to live here!) Born, bred and still live in the city that has beat Liverpool at everything from trade to football (well, apart from the last couple of games...) We even managed to build a canal to nick all your ships;-) (Shame it didn't last realy...) Oh - OK then, you win. I suppose the 'pool ain't too bad. Just don't come up the East Lancs, that's all.

Wrong about the convicts as well I'm afraid - the following is from a 'potted' history I have seen.

"The Black Ball Line was founded by a group of Quakers in 1818. It was the first line to take passengers on a regular basis, sailing from New York, Boston and Philadelphia on the first and sixteenth of each month. The Blackball flag was a crimson swallow-tail flag with a black ball."

Oh, and Liverpool Micks only didn't get scurvy because there was enough wrong with them already....

Cheers

DtG


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Jon
Date: 03 Apr 01 - 03:54 AM

Yep you're right about the last couple of games, but I'm with you all the way on the rest!

My Grt Grandad sailed on the champion, and the Baines, saved all his money, purchased his own Thames barge and moved south. So he was the typical Scouse Mick in London. He was killed by a protection racket operating out of Silvertown, and the family moved north again. My Grandad eventually settled in Gravesend when he took employment with the Port of London Authority, and the family moved south a second time. We keep the faith :)

It seems that there were two Black Ball Lines, (see message above) the Liverpool one was owned by Thomas Baines. I have checked up with the NHM library, and they have the plans of one BBL ship which had a below decks prison and above deck accommodation for paying passengers (warders and governors on tour of duty I presume). This one pre-dates the Champion, but I don't know by how far. The NHM are posting me photocopies. I am also in hot persuit of an out of print book which has illustrations and a short history of each BBL ship.

I am trying to get as much info on the Champion, and the Baines so that I have something to hand to my kids when they are old enough to tell me I'm an old fart, and they aren't interested ;)

Signs off waiving flag with emblem of liver bird with shamrock in its mouth.

Jon


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Subject: Lyr Add: CHAMPION OF THE SEAS
From: radriano
Date: 10 Apr 01 - 06:41 PM

Facination discussion on this song.

Having just received my copy of Hughie Jones' Hughie's Ditty Bag CD I would say that he's definitely singing "blue DBs" and "limejuice touches" - at least it's definite to my ear. There are a few different words and phrases from what was posted earlier in this thread so see below for a transcription of the song on Hughie's CD.

GUEST,Jon, you said you'd put a midi of the tune that your grandfather used on your site. Did you do that and how can I find your site? Post the info, if you wouldn't mind. My e-mail is listed in Mudcat resources if you want to use that.

CHAMPION OF THE SEAS
Hughie's Ditty-Bag, Fellside FECD81


As I was a-rolling down Park Lane, a-wearing of me shoes
I stepped into the shipping office to hear what was the news
The shipping master said to me 'get on your blue DB's
Lets have none of you limejuice touches us in the Champion of the Seas

In the Champion of the Seas, in the Champion of the Seas
Lets have none of you limejuice touches us in the Champion of the Seas

We was Melbourne bound in '54, December gales did blow
The sheets was hard as iron from the driving hail and snow
But then bold Captain Newlands cried this is just a breeze.
We'll prove the name Black Baller in the Champion of the Seas

In the Champion of the Seas, in the Champion of the Seas
We'll prove the name Black Baller in the Champion of the Seas

Some times upon that trip, boys, I thought I'd lose me mind
I started thinking sadly of those I'd left behind
But thoughts of Maggy May boys, or anyone you please
I would trade them all with pleasure for the Champion of the Seas

Oh the Champion of the Seas, oh the Champion of the Seas
I would trade them all with pleasure for the Champion of the Seas

Now the voyage it is over and to Liverpool we've come
I know a house in Paradise Street with brandy, gin and rum
Going to walk the streets of Liverpool until me feet do freeze
Aye, before we sail again aboard the Champion of the Seas

In the Champion of the Seas, in the Champion of the Seas
Aye before we sail again aboard the Champion of the Seas

Richard


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: radriano
Date: 10 Apr 01 - 06:44 PM

Aargh! Sorry, folks.

The last line of the first verse and the second line of the first chorus should read:

Lets have none of you limejuice touches in the Champion of the Seas


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: GUEST,Roll&Go-C
Date: 11 Apr 01 - 11:01 AM

I'm still willing to cover all bets on the tune family.

Not that anyone should care but:

Let's have none of you limejuice touches in the Champion of the Seas.

Richard, thanks for pasting in Hughie's version.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: Abby Sale
Date: 11 Apr 01 - 04:39 PM

I took some considerable notes on Blackball lines & all several years back when trying to sort it all out. I don't think I'll post them now as most of the questions seem to be answered. One that wasn't asked is howcome there is more than one Black Ball? The New York packet line started in 1818 as "The Old Line" but came to be called "The Black Ball Line" about 1840. When Baines started his line he simply pirated the name & logo for his own. Nothing is new in the world. But his was the third Black Ball. There was a second Black Ball line, a packet line, for a few years in the 1850's and a fourth one around 1900. But that last was steam so you may not want to count it.

Bully Forbes did indeed captain for Baines on the famous Marco Polo. (You can't always trust songs to be strictly accurate. In song, in "Hob Y Derri Dando," the Marco Polo winds up housing Cosher Bailey's engine. Of course it never had an engine and Cosher Bailey built a locomotive but them's just details.) Some of the stories about Forbes are ferocious and even awesome. He was not a very nice chap but was a very effective captain and, in his way, a truly inspiring personell manager.

Yes, Sovereign of the Seas and Champion of the Seas were two separate ships. Both extreme clippers built by Donald McKay for Baines, launched in 1852 & 1854, respectively.

Much good sailing ship info (and a good part of what I've gleaned) can be found at Lars Bruzelius' The Maritime History Virtual Archives, http://pc-78-120.UDAC.SE:8001/WWW/Nautica/Nautica.html


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Champion of the Seas
From: Richard from Liverpool
Date: 31 Mar 11 - 10:56 AM

Dear all,

I'd like to try and resuscitate this 10 year old thread. I now have a copy of the Spinners Song Book, and so I have the Spinners version of the words and tune from that. As was noted in the old thread, the Spinners write: "The fo'c'sle song was collected in part from a retired sea cpatina's widow by Jacueline McDonald. Hugh Jones has added a verse and adapted elsewhere".

Earlier in this thread, we have Hughie Jones' intervention "The words were originally part of an old song - I wrote the present version and it was recorded by the Spinners and I often sing this during my current solo career ! I included it on the first solo release "Hughies Ditty Bag" and the lyrics are in the accompanting songbook"


What I want to know is:
a) does this mean that the Spinners version of the tune was an entirely new creation? (that's the impression I get from what's being said)

b) are they any other versions of the tune out there? Does anybody have an idea of the tune that would have been used before the Spinners? I'd be PARTICULARLY keen to hear from GUEST,Jon (any chances he's still around) to see if it's still possible to get hold of that midi file of the tune his grandfather used.


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