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Lyr Req: Johnson Girls (chantey)

DigiTrad:
JOHNSON BOYS
JOHNSON BOYS 2
JOHNSON GAL


Related thread:
(origins) Origins: Johnson Boys/Johnson Gals (36)


GUEST,Daniel 17 Jan 01 - 03:25 AM
Zebedee 17 Jan 01 - 04:38 AM
MartinRyan 17 Jan 01 - 05:31 AM
GUEST,Daniel 17 Jan 01 - 09:09 AM
Barry Finn 17 Jan 01 - 08:11 PM
GUEST,Daniel 18 Jan 01 - 02:38 AM
Kudzuman 06 Nov 02 - 08:59 PM
Joe Offer 06 Nov 02 - 09:20 PM
masato sakurai 06 Nov 02 - 09:22 PM
Joe Offer 06 Nov 02 - 09:27 PM
GUEST,Richie 06 Nov 02 - 09:42 PM
Sandy Paton 06 Nov 02 - 09:50 PM
Joe Offer 06 Nov 02 - 09:54 PM
GUEST,Richie 06 Nov 02 - 09:59 PM
Mr Red 07 Nov 02 - 04:12 PM
Sandy Paton 07 Nov 02 - 09:02 PM
Kudzuman 08 Nov 02 - 11:38 AM
VirginiaTam 13 Aug 09 - 03:58 PM
Herga Kitty 13 Aug 09 - 06:34 PM
Gibb Sahib 13 Aug 09 - 08:22 PM
VirginiaTam 14 Aug 09 - 02:48 AM
GUEST,HESK 09 Sep 09 - 04:10 AM
breezy 09 Sep 09 - 04:14 AM
GUEST,HESK 09 Sep 09 - 06:39 AM
Azizi 09 Sep 09 - 09:00 AM
SPB-Cooperator 09 Sep 09 - 06:40 PM
SPB-Cooperator 09 Sep 09 - 06:47 PM
GUEST,Joy (one of The Johnson Girls 18 Jun 10 - 02:54 PM
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Subject: bouline
From: GUEST,Daniel
Date: 17 Jan 01 - 03:25 AM

Bonjour from france, I'm looking for the lyric of the seasong "The johnson girls" performed by johnny collins and jim mageean Merci à tous


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: bouline
From: Zebedee
Date: 17 Jan 01 - 04:38 AM

The fact that there's a female shanty group called the "Johnson Girls" complicates searching.

There's a song in the database called Johnson Gal.

Is that the one you wanted?

Ed


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: bouline
From: MartinRyan
Date: 17 Jan 01 - 05:31 AM

HERE's a reference to the recording, in case anyone has it.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: bouline
From: GUEST,Daniel
Date: 17 Jan 01 - 09:09 AM

thanks to you zebedee and MartinRyan I bought the record of johnny Collins and Jim Mageean during the great ship festival "BREST 2000" and I met them. I play in a shanty group and I like the tempo of this song. Unfortunately, I thought find the lyric in the CD but it was not in it, and my english is to poor to copy the song when I listen to it (I hope you understand what I write! ;o) ). I saw the song Johnson Gal, but it seems that the words are not the same. Merci


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Subject: ADD: Johnson Girls (shanty)
From: Barry Finn
Date: 17 Jan 01 - 08:11 PM

Johson Girls are mighty fine girls
Walk around honey walk around
Johnson Girls are mighty fine girls
Walk around honey walk around

They got great big legs & intsy binsy feet (2x)

Beefsteak, beafsteak make a little gravy
Beefsteak, beefsteak make a little baby

They make a ???? called j???? jam
It's hot like pepper but it's good god damn

or something like that, Barry


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: bouline
From: GUEST,Daniel
Date: 18 Jan 01 - 02:38 AM

Thanks a lot Barry I don't know exactly what this song means in French (I guess it tells about a curious girl!), but it's a good opportunity to improve my english! Bien sincerement Daniel


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Subject: Lyr Req: Johnson Girls
From: Kudzuman
Date: 06 Nov 02 - 08:59 PM

Already searched this one in the forum and DT. So far no luck on the version I'm looking for. The one I'm looking for goes like this:

Johnson Girls is a-mighty fine girls
Walk around honey, honey walk around

And that's all I know. Sea chanty for sure if that helps narrow the search. Thanks!!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Johnson Girls
From: Joe Offer
Date: 06 Nov 02 - 09:20 PM

I thought that was a Mudcat standard, but I had a little trouble finding it. The thread on the song is above (click), and even Barry Finn doesn't have complete lyrics. It's on a CD by Starboard List, and it has an interesting period of silence between each verse.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: Lyr Add: JOHNSON GIRLS
From: masato sakurai
Date: 06 Nov 02 - 09:22 PM

From this site.

JOHNSON GIRLS

Then Johnson girls is a mighty fine girls,
Ch. Walk around, honey, walk around!
Then Johnson girls is a mighty fine girls.
Ch. Walk around, honey, walk around!

They are neat in the waist and got mighty fine legs,
Great big legs and teeny eensy feet.

Beefsteak, beefsteak make a little gravy,
Your thing, my thing, make a little baby.

They have got something over yonder they call Jamaica jam,
Hot as chilly pepper an' good goddam.

Then Johnson girls is a mighty fine girls,
Then Johnson girls is a mighty fine girls

~Masato


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Johnson Girls
From: Joe Offer
Date: 06 Nov 02 - 09:27 PM

Sounds right, Masato. Thanks.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Johnson Girls
From: GUEST,Richie
Date: 06 Nov 02 - 09:42 PM

It's also in a thread with incomplete lyrics.

-Richie


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Johnson Girls
From: Sandy Paton
Date: 06 Nov 02 - 09:50 PM

Trouble is, it's on Folk-Legacy's CD of The Boarding Party, Tis Our Sailing Time - CD-97. I don't think it's on the Starboard List CD, which we also carry, but I don't have a copy up here with me to check on that. Tom McHenry leads it on the Boarding Party recording.

Sandy


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Johnson Girls
From: Joe Offer
Date: 06 Nov 02 - 09:54 PM

Yes, Sandy, it's on the Boarding Party CD, not on Starboard List. I couldn't find either CD at the moment, so I had to rely on my unreliable memory...
[grin]
[groan]
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Johnson Girls
From: GUEST,Richie
Date: 06 Nov 02 - 09:59 PM

It's also on Keelhaulin' by The Keelers ( Newcastle UK)

-Richie


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Johnson Girls
From: Mr Red
Date: 07 Nov 02 - 04:12 PM

Sam Simmons of SomersFolkLife sings this if you want a few variations.
I point to his website and e-mail on my site cresby.com.
I'm sure he would oblige if you ask him.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Johnson Girls
From: Sandy Paton
Date: 07 Nov 02 - 09:02 PM

I'll confess, Joe. I cheat! I have a wonderful index of all the songs on Folk-Legacy's 128 recordings that Karen K (the Mudcatter who first told me about the Forum) compiled and printed out for me. I use it all the time to answer questions about where people can find particular songs. I often get such requests after one or another of the folk DJs plays something from our catalog. I'd be lost without it. Caroline can often remember which album or CD a song is on, but I forget. Now that I'm digitally mastering much of our back catalog, I'm reminded of how many good songs there are in that pile of stuff we've recorded over the past 41 years. You'll be hearing them soon, lad.
Sandy


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Johnson Girls
From: Kudzuman
Date: 08 Nov 02 - 11:38 AM

Thanks everyone. I have it on a recording by a Polish group called "Top Twentys". I can't find out anything about them but the recording is a hoot. Great harmonies and all Celtic/English songs mostly sung in Polish. It is unique to say the least!! 80's vintage I think!

Kudzuman rustling in the wind after the first frost.


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Subject: ADD Version: Johnson Girls (chantey)
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 13 Aug 09 - 03:58 PM

I learned it from CD titled Tomorrow's Tide by Salt of the Earth (Barrie and Ingrid Temple and Joyce and Danny McLeod).

Lyrics below as I transcribed from listening to the CD.

JOHNSON GIRLS

Johnson girls is a mighty fine girls
Walk around, honey walk around

Johnson girls is a mighty fine girls
Walk around, honey walk around

Neat in the waste and mighty fine legs
Walk around, honey walk around

Neat in the waste and mighty fine legs
Walk around, honey walk around

Great big legs and teency, eency feet
Walk around, honey walk around

Great big legs and teency, eency feet
Walk around, honey walk around

Beef steak make a little gravy
Walk around, honey walk around

Your thing my thing make a little baby
Walk around, honey walk around

A way down yonder they got Jumaica jam
Walk around, honey walk around

Hot as cayenne and a good god dazmn
Walk around, honey walk around

Johnson girls is a mighty fine girls
Walk around, honey walk around

Johnson girls is a mighty fine girls
Walk around, honey walk around

The CD liner notes follow:
JOHNSON GIRLS (Traditional)

A fine song originally recorded on the menhaden fishing boat The Boys of Maryport, Florida in July 1940 by Robert Cook and Robert Cornwall. We first heard it from Bob Walser ('Landlocked' 1988 – great album!) who has been responsible for researching and introducing so many good songs to our tradition. Pulling or 'hardening up' the nets, is done in silence and the verses sung while the fishermen gather a new grip on the net.

So there is a 2 bar rest between each line. Very effective and goes down pretty well with listeners when I perform it.


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Subject: RE: Johnson Girls (shanty)
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 13 Aug 09 - 06:34 PM

It was sung this evening at Johnny Collins' wake, by Tom Kelly.

Kitty


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Johnson Girls
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 13 Aug 09 - 08:22 PM

Unfortunately, nearly everyone (that I've heard) seems to sing the same lyrics and it's damn boring. Surely the words to this "folk" song from an African-American tradition are incidental and not intended to be "covered" as if it were a Queen song!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Johnson Girls
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 14 Aug 09 - 02:48 AM

Gibb

Are you saying that Queen covered this? I don't sing it in anyway like Freddy Mercury, more like Odetta would. But it is interesting to think about.

Hmmm! can I get away with prancing, while I sing it?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Johnson Girls
From: GUEST,HESK
Date: 09 Sep 09 - 04:10 AM

Anyone know what Jamaica, Jumaica, jam is?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Johnson Girls
From: breezy
Date: 09 Sep 09 - 04:14 AM

yam even

Yes, everyone knows.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Johnson Girls
From: GUEST,HESK
Date: 09 Sep 09 - 06:39 AM

Interesting theory, but Jimmy Mageen, and other singers, clearly sing "jam".
In any case the vegetable is not hot, like Chilli, or Cayenne are.
Perhaps I have misunderstood your meaning, that according to you, everyone else knows and understands!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Johnson Girls
From: Azizi
Date: 09 Sep 09 - 09:00 AM

GUEST,HESK, I almost positive that Jamaican jam means the same thing as jelly does in Blues slang.

Here's a link which explains more:

http://blueslyrics.tripod.com/blueslanguage.htm#jelly_roll


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Johnson Girls
From: SPB-Cooperator
Date: 09 Sep 09 - 06:40 PM

I can't find my copy at the moment, so I can't remember if they recorded it, but you can get a feel for how the song worked by listening to the Menhaden Fisherman's Choir


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Johnson Girls
From: SPB-Cooperator
Date: 09 Sep 09 - 06:47 PM

It's not on the recording.


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Subject: ADD Version: Johnson Girls (chantey)
From: GUEST,Joy (one of The Johnson Girls
Date: 18 Jun 10 - 02:54 PM

JOHNSON GIRLS

Johnson girls is a mighty fine girls,
walk around, honey, walk around
Them Johnson Girls is a mighty fine girls
walk around, honey, walk around

Neat in the waist, they got might fine legs
walk around...
Neat in the waist, they got might fine legs
walk around...

Great big legs and a teensy eensy feet
walk around...
Great big legs and a teensy eensy feet
walk around...

Beefsteak, beefsteak, make a little gravy
walk around...
Yo' thing, my thing, make a little baby
walk around...

They got som'thin under yonder they call Ju'maica jam
walk around...
Hot as cayenne, but it's good god-dam
walk around...

Johnson girls is a mighty fine girls,
walk around, honey, walk around
Them Johnson Girls is a mighty fine girls
walk around, honey, walk around


keep in mind that this is a Menahden chantey -- the work was not done while singing, but in the pauses - so after the "walk around..." bits there were long pauses in the music while the work (pulling in the nets, etc.) was done.

Azizi -- you are correct about "jam" – which is one of the reasons why the line is "som'thin' UNDER yonder and NOT OVER"


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