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Lyr Add: Wexford Fishing Song

DigiTrad:
WEXFORD FISHING SONG


Related thread:
Lyr Req: songs by P. J. McCall (25)


Wolfgang Hell 29 Oct 98 - 09:25 AM
Martin Ryan 29 Oct 98 - 10:41 AM
Wolfgang 29 Oct 98 - 10:49 AM
Liam's Brother 29 Oct 98 - 03:28 PM
dick greenhaus 30 Oct 98 - 12:45 AM
Wolfgang 30 Oct 98 - 04:34 AM
Liam's Brother 30 Oct 98 - 04:30 PM
Martin Ryan. 01 Nov 98 - 06:56 PM
Wolfgang 05 Nov 98 - 11:53 AM
Wolfgang 29 Dec 98 - 04:20 PM
Martin _Ryan 25 Feb 99 - 08:35 PM
Philippa 26 Feb 99 - 10:36 AM
Wolfgang 03 Jun 99 - 06:10 AM
MMario 26 Apr 01 - 09:53 AM
Wolfgang 26 Apr 01 - 10:54 AM
MARINER 26 Apr 01 - 01:54 PM
MARINER 26 Apr 01 - 02:21 PM
MARINER 26 Apr 01 - 05:25 PM
MartinRyan 26 Apr 01 - 05:31 PM
Noreen 26 Apr 01 - 08:49 PM
Wolfgang 27 Apr 01 - 04:05 AM
MARINER 27 Apr 01 - 05:30 PM
Airto 27 Nov 01 - 12:12 PM
Airto 28 Nov 01 - 08:54 AM
Wolfgang 13 Dec 01 - 12:46 PM
MMario 16 Apr 03 - 01:56 PM
ciarili 16 Apr 03 - 04:03 PM
MMario 01 May 03 - 03:54 PM
MARINER 01 May 03 - 04:55 PM
Stewart 02 May 03 - 01:30 PM
MMario 02 May 03 - 01:39 PM
MARINER 02 May 03 - 04:33 PM
MartinRyan 30 Jul 09 - 06:13 PM
MartinRyan 31 Jul 09 - 03:48 AM
Jim Dixon 05 Aug 09 - 12:42 PM
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Subject: Lyr Add: WEXFORD FISHING SONG
From: Wolfgang Hell
Date: 29 Oct 98 - 09:25 AM

I heard this song on an LP from MacMurragh (MacMurrough?) a duo I never heard of before or after. This is my transcription with a couple of ??? starting of course with the placenames. If you know it please mend my mistakes.

Wolfgang

WEXFORD FISHING SONG

1. The red sun rolls down over Ballyteige’s waters
and the Saltees grow misty and grey.
At home, on the mainland, out wives and our daughters
are wishing good luck on the day.
With the west wind long blowing
our nets filled o’erflowing
from a shoal that broke under our lee.

Chorus1: So raise high a chorus,
the way lies before us,
with a boat full of spoil from the sea.

2. The wind from the northlands is cruel and smiting
and the young lambs we scarcely can save,
while the wind from the eastlands is callous and blighting
and it adds a full foot to the wave.
Oh, sweet west wind singing,
a seagull (all/o’er) winging
is our hooker that skims light and free. Chorus1

3. The wind from the southlands is soft and beguiling
and it quickens the seeds we have set,
but the wind from the westlands is soothing and smiling
and it brings the bright fish to the net.
Then hope for the west wind
for oh, ‘tis the best wind
to save our poor fishers from dree.

Chorus2: So raise high a chorus,
Kilmore lies before us,
with a boat full of spoil from the sea.

4. Fill (theer) round the sails and (the moore) safely guide her
one more tack and we’ll make for the pier.
See my Ellen and Marg’ret and (Stacia) beside her
when I e’er does come home to my dear.
Oh sweet queen of heaven
let my praise be given
to the babe who once sat on thy knee.

Chorus3: While we raised high our chorus,
his blessing (hung) o’er us,
with a boat full of spoil from the sea.

Chorus2.


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: Martin Ryan
Date: 29 Oct 98 - 10:41 AM

Interesting one. There is a long tradition of songs from the Wexford area to do with the sea - lifeboats, tragedies etc. Can't say I recognise this one. The main placenames are real enough. I'm a bit wary of the "hooker" reference in one verse.Did you recognise the air?

I'll check it out when I get a chance.

Regards


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: Wolfgang
Date: 29 Oct 98 - 10:49 AM

Martin, I didn't know the tune but I'll check on the record cover for notes.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: Liam's Brother
Date: 29 Oct 98 - 03:28 PM

Guten tag Wolfgang!

I could help you pretty quickly, I think, if I could hear the tape, but this is a tough assignment. There was a collection, Songs of the Wexford Coast, published in 1948 but it's nearly impossible to get. At least I haven't been able to get it.

Send me a message if you'd want me to listen to a tape for you.

All the best, Dan


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 30 Oct 98 - 12:45 AM

Martin- A Hooker is a type of fishing craft. Among other things.


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: Wolfgang
Date: 30 Oct 98 - 04:34 AM

Dan, I have sent you a private message saying "yes, thank you" in many more words.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: Liam's Brother
Date: 30 Oct 98 - 04:30 PM

Hi Wolfgang!

Unable to retrieve your message. Please try folkmusic@prodigy.net

All the best, Dan


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: Martin Ryan.
Date: 01 Nov 98 - 06:56 PM

Dan

"Songs of the Wexford Coast" was reprinted in 1975. I have a copy. The song is not there. I can keep an eye out for a copy of the book if you're interested. There is a later book of Wexford songs by Paddy Berry, whom you may know. I'll check it when I get a chance.

Dick
Yes - I know what a "hooker" is in this context - I've sailed the damn things! It's just that I've never heard the word used in Wexford. I doubt if the boats or the term were used there in living memory. My feeling is that the song is very recent - maybe adapted from somewhere else. I vaguely remember the group alright.

Wolfgang
Keep searching!

Regards


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: Wolfgang
Date: 05 Nov 98 - 11:53 AM

Hi Dan,

I've tried two ways this time, but just in case: mail hell@psy.uni-muenster.de

Wolfgang


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Subject: Lyr Add: WEXFORD FISHING SONG
From: Wolfgang
Date: 29 Dec 98 - 04:20 PM

here it is again with some corrections from Liam's brother. Thank you, Dan. (He isn't completely sure about the "Theer" in verse 4, but he's confident that there's two sailor's names)

Wolfgang

Wexford Fishing Song

1. The red sun rolls down over Ballyteige’s waters
and the Saltees grow misty and grey.
At home, on the mainland, our wives and our daughters
are wishing good luck on the day.
With the west wind long blowing
our nets filled o’erflowing
from a shoal that broke under our lee.

Chorus1: So raise high a chorus,
the way lies before us,
with a boat full of spoil from the sea.

2. The wind from the northlands is cruel and smiting
and the young lambs we scarcely can save,
while the wind from the eastlands is callous and blighting
and it adds a full foot to the wave.
Oh, sweet west wind singing,
a seagull a-winging
is our hooker that skims light and free. Chorus1

3. The wind from the southlands is soft and beguiling
and it quickens the seeds we have set,
but the wind from the westlands is soothing and smiling
and it brings the bright fish to the net.
Then hope for the west wind
for oh, ‘tis the best wind
to save our poor fishers from dree.

Chorus2: So raise high a chorus,
Kilmore lies before us,
with a boat full of spoil from the sea.

4. Phil Theer round the sails Andy Moore safely guide her
one more tack and we’ll make for the pier.
See my Ellen and Marg’ret and (Stacia) beside her
when I e’er does come home to my dear.
Oh sweet queen of heaven
let my praise be given
to the babe who once sat on thy knee.

Chorus3: While we raised high our chorus,
his blessing (hung) o’er us,
with a boat full of spoil from the sea.

Chorus2.


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: Martin _Ryan
Date: 25 Feb 99 - 08:35 PM

I'm still puzzled by this one. There is a "Wexford Fishermen's Song" based on folklore about not sailing on St. Martin's day (oddly enough). Not the same song,obviously.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Hookers
From: Philippa
Date: 26 Feb 99 - 10:36 AM

I saw the reference to hookers; learn more at this site www.galwayonline.ie/welcome/history/history2/hookers.htm


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: Wolfgang
Date: 03 Jun 99 - 06:10 AM

Martin,
as for the tune, to give you a rough idea, it uses parts of the Bard of Armagh but goes into a slightly different melody where the Bard of Armagh doesn't fit well. Esp. for lines 1-4 and the chorus, the fit is close.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: MMario
Date: 26 Apr 01 - 09:53 AM

Anyone capable of posting the tune? Or could scan and e-mail it?


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: Wolfgang
Date: 26 Apr 01 - 10:54 AM

I'll mail a tape if that helps.

Takers?

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: MARINER
Date: 26 Apr 01 - 01:54 PM

As far as I remember "The Wexford Fishing Song was first recorded by The Kinsella Family, from Kilmore Quay. Ithink the song is of fairly recent vintage, a poem put to music by Kinsellas. Ijust need 10 mins. and I'll be back with details. ( Ithink the reference to Hooker is a bit iffy, coming from a Wexford song.


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: MARINER
Date: 26 Apr 01 - 02:21 PM

Take back my last post.I am reliably informed, by one of The Kinsellas that they never recorded The Wexford Fishing Song, so the original was by McMorrough (a fine duo)from Ferns Co. Wexford. Now, the song itself, the words are by P.J.McCall(Wind that shakes the barley, Boys of Wexford,Lowlands Low, etc),not as recent as I thought. The air,( sounds to me like a a variant of "The Boys From The County Mayo" )was written by Mrs. Babs Egan of Scar ,Duncormick, Co Wexford. So, although the words are over a hundred years old , the air is about twenty odd years old. Sorry for first screw up, Mariner (a copper fastened "Yellabelly", Wexford man to you strangers)


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: MARINER
Date: 26 Apr 01 - 05:25 PM

Wolfgang Hell, I forgot to mention you should look after that McMorrough album, it's worth a lot of money. Their Polydor albums are in the £400 price range.


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: MartinRyan
Date: 26 Apr 01 - 05:31 PM

Mariner

Very interesting! Some of the phrases are quite like McCall's "Sailing in the Lowlands", alright. I've never heard it sung, I must say.

Regards


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: Noreen
Date: 26 Apr 01 - 08:49 PM

Interesting! I had/still have (?I hope!) a McMurrough album... were there not many pressed or what, to make them so valuable now, Mariner? (Mine didn't have this song on though.)


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: Wolfgang
Date: 27 Apr 01 - 04:05 AM

Mariner,

thanks a lot for all that information. The MacMurragh album gives hardly< more than the titles of the songs.
That's now the third of my albums I heard is worth a lot. I join Noreen in the question. The music as such doesn't make it valuable to me, it is 'too sweet' for my taste. I remember I only bought it for the collection of songs and not for the sound.

Martin,

you've never heard it sung? I'll change that. Isn't there an event some time soon which is an opportunity for presents (like tapes)?

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: MARINER
Date: 27 Apr 01 - 05:30 PM

I've really no idea why McMorrough's albums are worth so much. Like Wolfgang ,I always found them a little "sweet".I bought one of their albums in the Iveagh Market in Dublin for £2 and sold it a few weeks later to a dealer for £40.Shortly afterwards he had it for sale for £400, a price that they apparently fetch regularly.I have a feeling that the label it's on may have some part in the value. I think they were on Polydor "Folkmill" which for some reason is a fairly collectable label. McMorrough were a husband/wife duo. Paul Kavanagh( the hubby) is now a barrister practicing on the south/east circuit in Ireland.The song in question was also recorded recently by The Rathangan Choir from McCall's "home place" in Co. Wexford.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Yarmouth town and Wexford fishing s
From: Airto
Date: 27 Nov 01 - 12:12 PM

"It quickens the sails we have set", rather than seeds, I think.

Phil Theer: Phil Dwyer, perhaps? Theer is not a surname I've heard of.

Dree sounds odd. Can't think of alternatives at the moment, though. There are certain dialect words in Wexford not used elsewhere.

Stacia seems likely. Short for Anastasia.

Hookers are a Galway Bay speciality. I don't know they if they existed in other regions. I don't think they were ever used for fishing.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Yarmouth town and Wexford fishing s
From: Airto
Date: 28 Nov 01 - 08:54 AM

Having had more time to think about "dree", I suspect the intended word is "grief".

The term "hooker" is more generic than I thought, and such boats were indeed used for fishing as well as carrying small cargo. A quick search found references to Boston, Plymouth and Kinsale hookers as well as the well known Galway variety.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Yarmouth town and Wexford fishing s
From: Wolfgang
Date: 13 Dec 01 - 12:46 PM

Thank you, Airto, for thinking about the lyrics.
I've listened again and I now think my transliteration is very close to what is sung (of course, the word boundaries might be at other places: 'Phil Theer' might as well be 'filth ear', disregarding the sense).
(But I was sure with another song recently and then the author posted and said he is actually singing what I don't hear; so I never trust me completely with English lyrics)

- I insist on 'seeds' (until more evidence comes that I'm wrong) and I think it makes sense in that context.
- 'Phil Theer' is not a likely name I admit, but the much more likely 'Dwyer' is too far away from the string of phonemes. This is not the last word on this line
- thanks for hooker and Stacia; that settles it for me
- 'dree': as a translitaration I'm confident I'm right ('drea', of course, fits the sound too); I found in a three volume Websters the following: 'dree: chiefly Scot.: misfortune, suffering'. This entry was the reason I put 'dree' in, seeing the problem of not being able to explain how a 'chiefly Scot.' meaning could be transported to Wexford.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: MMario
Date: 16 Apr 03 - 01:56 PM

tune?


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Subject: RE: ADD: Wexford fishing song
From: ciarili
Date: 16 Apr 03 - 04:03 PM

I see that you guys credit P.J.McCall with The Wind That Shakes the Barley, but I thought it was written by Robert Dwyer Joyce (1830-1883). Maybe someone'll come along and let us know....


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Wexford Fishing Song
From: MMario
Date: 01 May 03 - 03:54 PM

tune?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Wexford Fishing Song
From: MARINER
Date: 01 May 03 - 04:55 PM

Sorry,Ciarili you're correct, Wind That Shakes The Barley was written by Robert Dwyer Joyce. Sorry, I don't know how I made such a mistake. Mea Culpa! And the first to record it were The Kinsellas, even though Nick Kinsella told me they hadn't.Then he sent me a tape they released of Wexford songs and there it was! He must hace forgotton about it.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Wexford Fishing Song
From: Stewart
Date: 02 May 03 - 01:30 PM

Since MMario keeps asking for the tune (I was waiting also), but none has appeared, I have adapted a tune from "The Bard of Armagh" (as suggested by Wolfgang). The ABC is below. My chords are:

Dm A7 Dm A7
- Dm A7
Dm A7 Dm A7
Dm C Dm
Dm A7 Dm A7
- Dm A7
Dm A7 Dm A7
Dm C Dm


X:1
T:Wexford Fishing Song
C:words - P. J. McCall; tune ~ Bard of Armagh
Q:1/4=100
I:abc2nwc
M:6/8
L:1/8
K:C
z3z2A,|D3/2^C/2D EAG|FDE ^C A, A,/2A,/2|D3/2^C/2D EFG|A3z2A,|D3/2^C/2D EAG|FDE ^CA,A,|D3/2E/2F ED=C|D3z2F/2G/2|AGF GAG|FDE ^C A, A,/2A,/2|D3/2^C/2D EFG|A3z2A|A3/2F/2A GEG|FDF E A, A,/2A,/2|D3/2E/2F ED=C|D3z3
|]

I don't know if this is the actual tune for the song, but it seems to work, and I sort of like it.

Cheers, S. in Seattle


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Wexford Fishing Song
From: MMario
Date: 02 May 03 - 01:39 PM

good enough for me, Stewart. thank you!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Wexford Fishing Song
From: MARINER
Date: 02 May 03 - 04:33 PM

Yeah, Isuppose it is a mix of The Bard of Armagh and The Boys from the County Mayo, but I think the latter is closest.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Wexford Fishing Song
From: MartinRyan
Date: 30 Jul 09 - 06:13 PM

Just spotted this one in an online version of one of P.J. McCall's books HERE (p. 123)

Regards


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Wexford Fishing Song
From: MartinRyan
Date: 31 Jul 09 - 03:48 AM

Incidentally, note that the first line of verse 4, which was causing some confusion, is "Phil - veer round the sail!"

Regards


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Subject: Lyr Add: WEXFORD FISHING SONG (P. J. McCall)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 05 Aug 09 - 12:42 PM

Here's the corrected text from Irish Fireside Songs by P. J. McCall (Dublin: M. H. Gill & Son, Ltd., 1911), page 123:


WEXFORD FISHING SONG
P. J. McCall
Air: "Poll Cearnuit," No. 1129 in "The Complete Petrie Collection."

1. The red sun rolls down over Ballyteig's waters,
And the Saltees grow misty and grey;
At home on the mainland our wives and our daughters
Are wishing good luck on the day!
With a west wind long blowing, our nets filled o'erflowing
From a shoal that broke under our lee;
Then raise high a chorus, the way lies before us,
With a boat full of spoil from the sea!

2. The wind from the Northlands is cruel and smiting,
And the young lambs we scarcely can save;
While the wind from the Eastlands is callous and blighting,
And it adds a full foot to the wave!
O sweet west wind singing! a seagull low winging
Is our hooker that skims light and free—
So raise high a chorus, the way lies before us,
With a boat full of spoil from the sea!

3. The wind from the Southlands is soft and beguiling,
And it quickens the seeds we have set;
But the wind from the Westlands is soothing and smiling,
And it brings the bright fish to the net!
Then ho, for the west wind, for oh, 'tis the best wind
To save all poor fishers from dree:
And raise high a chorus, Kilmore lies before us,
With our boat full of spoil from the sea!

4. Phil, veer round the sail! Andy Moore, safely guide her!
One more tack and we'll make for the pier!
See my Ellen, with Marg'ret and Stasia beside her—
When I e'er thus come home to my dear!
O sweet Queen of Heaven! let meet praise be given
To The Babe Who once sat on thy knee!
While we raised high our chorus, His blessing hung o'er us,
In the boat full of spoil from the sea!


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