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Lyr Add: Gosport Nancy

Charley Noble 12 Feb 05 - 12:52 PM
GUEST,Rolf Fan 12 Feb 05 - 02:12 PM
NH Dave 12 Feb 05 - 04:12 PM
Charley Noble 12 Feb 05 - 06:31 PM
GUEST 13 Feb 05 - 06:36 PM
Charley Noble 13 Feb 05 - 08:04 PM
GUEST,Guest 13 Feb 05 - 08:58 PM
Reiver 2 27 Apr 05 - 12:42 PM
vectis 27 Apr 05 - 01:18 PM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 27 Apr 05 - 01:44 PM
GUEST,Dave Roberts, Salt Town Poets 27 Apr 05 - 02:14 PM
Reiver 2 27 Apr 05 - 07:00 PM
vectis 27 Apr 05 - 07:19 PM
Reiver 2 27 Apr 05 - 07:58 PM
GUEST,Pete 28 Apr 05 - 11:24 AM
Charley Noble 28 Apr 05 - 06:10 PM
The Shambles 01 May 05 - 09:50 AM
The Shambles 01 May 05 - 09:59 AM
Charley Noble 01 May 05 - 11:52 AM
GUEST,M 05 Oct 06 - 08:55 PM
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Subject: Lyr Add: GOSPORT NANCY
From: Charley Noble
Date: 12 Feb 05 - 12:52 PM

Here are the words to this fine WW II vintage drinking song which commemorates a fine sailortown wench:

GOSPORT NANCY

(Traditional drinking song collected by Cyril Tawney in Grey Funnel Lines, 1987, pp. 54-55)

Gosport Nancy, she's my fancy,
She's the girl to make good sport;
How she'll greet you when she meets you
When your ship gets into port;
All the Gosport ladies,
They loves a sailor man,
But for finding a way to spend your pay
There's none like Gosport Nan!

Gosport ladies love their gargle,
Gosport girls they goes their tot;
Rum and brandy, gin and shandy,
Gosport girls will drink the lot;
All the Gosport ladies,
They swigs the flowing can,
But for knocking it back with Honest Jack
There's none like Gosport Nan!

Gosport girls they're good at dancing,
They're the best there is, no doubt;
When the music sets them prancing
How they fling their skirts about;
All the Gosport ladies,
They do the French Can-Can,
But for real high kicks and fancy tricks
There's none like Gosport Nan!

Gosport Nancy keeps a parlour
Where the boys can take their ease;
She will wake you, yes she'll shake you,
She will do whatever you please;
All the Gosport ladies,
They do the best they can,
But for making a bed for a sailor's head
There's none like Gosport Nan!

Notes from Cyril Tawney:

"Across the harbour from Portsmouth lies the borough of Gosport, its junior neighbour and the setting for another unique composition. In style and spirit it can rank alongside the best of the old sailing-ship ditties on the same subject. The author was clearly a cut above the usual standard of RN songwriters, yet he (or they) remains anonymous."

When my Roll & Go co-conspirator Norris Dale leads this song he adds a chorus which for the first verse would run:

All the Gosport ladies,
They do the best they can,
But for finding a way to spend your pay
There's none like Gosport Nan!

With the 3rd line varying from verse to verse.

If anyone has more of a clue where this song came from, we'd love to know and so would Cyril.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: GOSPORT NANCY
From: GUEST,Rolf Fan
Date: 12 Feb 05 - 02:12 PM

Can't tell you where it came from but I heard Rolf Harris sing it when he appeared at the Gosport Music Festival in 2001.

Rolf also gave credit and generous praise to Cyril Tawney that night which was a nice touch.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: GOSPORT NANCY
From: NH Dave
Date: 12 Feb 05 - 04:12 PM

The song was on one Rolf's LPs back in the early 70's, but hasn't appeared on any CD of his that I've managed to find.

    Dave


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: GOSPORT NANCY
From: Charley Noble
Date: 12 Feb 05 - 06:31 PM

Where is Rolf Harris based?

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: GOSPORT NANCY
From: GUEST
Date: 13 Feb 05 - 06:36 PM

Just west of London, by the Thames, not all that far from Gosport


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: GOSPORT NANCY
From: Charley Noble
Date: 13 Feb 05 - 08:04 PM

This is the Rolf Harris, Australian, who composed "Tie Me Kangaroo Down"?

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: GOSPORT NANCY
From: GUEST,Guest
Date: 13 Feb 05 - 08:58 PM

The one and the same.

Best known for all his TV work he is also very knowledgeable about traditional English folk music... something for which he deserves more credit.

He is also a thoroughly nice bloke.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gosport Nancy
From: Reiver 2
Date: 27 Apr 05 - 12:42 PM

A different song and much older... but about Gosport Girls. In his fine book "To Rule the Waves: How the British Navy Shaped the Modern World," Arthur Herman, in discussing prize money paid to sailors in the mid 1700s writes,"Even a sailor paid off from a long voyage could end up with a purse jammed with thirty or even forty guineas. No wonder the girls of Gosport used to sing:

Sailors they get all the money,
Soldiers they get none but brass;
I do love a jolly sailor,
Soldiers they may kiss my arse."

I'm not trying to start an interservice feud, but does anyone know anything more about this song? Other verses? Actual name? Tune?Anything. I have a Celtic band in mind that I think might be eespecially interested in learning it -- they're selling T-shirts with the last three words of the verse above emblazoned on them in Gaelic! "Pog mo thron," or something like that.

Reiver 2


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Subject: ADD: The Rolling Sailor
From: vectis
Date: 27 Apr 05 - 01:18 PM

The Rolling Sailor

Don't you see the ships a-coming? Don't you see them in full sail?
Don't you see the ships a-coming With the prizes at their tail?
Oh, my little Rolling sailor, oh, my little Rolling he;
I do love a jolly sailor, blithe and merry might he be.

Sailors they get all the money, soldiers they get none but brass;
I do love a jolly sailor, soldiers they may kiss my arse.
Oh, my little Rolling sailor, oh, my little Rolling he;
I do love a jolly sailor, soldiers may be damned for me.

How can I be blithe and merry, and my true love so far from me,
When so many pretty sailors are pressed and taken to the sea?
Oh, my little Rolling sailor, Oh, my little Rolling he;
I do love a jolly sailor blithe and merry may he be.

Oh, I wish the press were over and all the wars were at an end;
then everybody sailor Laddie would be merry with his friend.
Oh, my little Rolling sailor, Oh, my little Rolling he;
I do love a jolly sailor blithe and merry may he be.

When the wars they are all over and peace and plenty come again
then everybody sailor Laddie will come sailing o'er the main
Oh, my little Rolling sailor, Oh, my little Rolling he;
I do love a jolly sailor blithe and merry may he be.

I hope the wars will soon be over and all our sailors once come home,
then every lass would get her lad and every wife her son again.
Oh, my little Rolling sailor, Oh, my little Rolling he;
I do love a jolly sailor blithe and merry may he be.


First 2 verses collected by James Gardner in Gosport in 1781 the rest come from 'The Sailor Laddie' a garland text.

Hope this is the one you wanted
Mary


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gosport Nancy
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 27 Apr 05 - 01:44 PM

There are so many songs that were made up by sailors and very few ever knew where they originated. The version of Gosport Nancy I learned at HMS Sultan 1968 was said to be a WW2 song. This is the only part of a verse I remember that differs from other versions

Gosport Girls all love their tars
Gosport girls prop up all the bars
They will take you all the way boys
Blockhouse, Haslar, and Priddys Hard


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gosport Nancy
From: GUEST,Dave Roberts, Salt Town Poets
Date: 27 Apr 05 - 02:14 PM

'Gosport Nancy' is on an old Rolf Harris MFP ('Music For Pleasure') album called 'Altogether Now' which also has such gems as 'Click Go The Shears','The Wild Rover' and 'The Court Of King Caractacus' on it. I've treasured this album for many years and played it until it won't play no more. I know a lot of Rolf's early stuff, including some of the songs on this album, has been re-released but there are, as they say, 'glaring omissions' and 'Gosport Nancy' seems to be one of them.
I think it should be released as a single immediately (if there is still such as thing as a single).


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gosport Nancy
From: Reiver 2
Date: 27 Apr 05 - 07:00 PM

Hey vectis! I'm sure that's the song. Thanks so much! Do you know if the tune is available anywhere? Or, better, if it is recorded anywhere? I'm trying to search through the DigiTrad here, but it's a slow process. Anyway, thanks again. I didn't expect so quick and so complete a reply.

I apologize to the Gosport Nancy people on this thread. I typed in Gosport Girls in the search and this was the only thread that showed up. I'll look under The Rolling Sailor.

Reiver 2


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gosport Nancy
From: vectis
Date: 27 Apr 05 - 07:19 PM

I have the music and can send it to you as a noteworthy file. You would need to PM me with an e-mail address for that. Failing that i could scan it and send it as a picture file of some sort. It's got a nice rumpty tumpty sort of tune, if you know what I mean.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gosport Nancy
From: Reiver 2
Date: 27 Apr 05 - 07:58 PM

Thanks, vectis! I've PM'd you my email address. I'm not sure what a "noteworthy file" is, but hopefully I can figure it out and hear the rumpty tumpty tune! :-)

Reiver 2


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gosport Nancy
From: GUEST,Pete
Date: 28 Apr 05 - 11:24 AM

I was born and raised in Portsmouth and so were my father and mother before (and theirs). Dad always maintained that gosport was the last place God made, and he forgot to finish it.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gosport Nancy
From: Charley Noble
Date: 28 Apr 05 - 06:10 PM

Verses of "The Rolling Sailor" were also quoted by Patrick O'Brian in his Capt. Aubrey novels.

Dave- thanks for the additional note on "Gosport Nancy"

I will not that Rolf Harris's website version of "Gosport Nancy" has several mistakes, not necessarily folkprocessing.

It's a great tune!

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gosport Nancy
From: The Shambles
Date: 01 May 05 - 09:50 AM

Sailors they get all the money,
Soldiers they get none but brass;
I do love a jolly sailor,
Soldiers they may kiss my arse."

I'm not trying to start an interservice feud, but does anyone know anything more about this song? Other verses? Actual name? Tune?Anything. I have a Celtic band in mind that I think might be eespecially interested in learning it -- they're selling T-shirts with the last three words of the verse above emblazoned on them in Gaelic! "Pog mo thron," or something like that.


Can anyone tell us more about this song?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gosport Nancy
From: The Shambles
Date: 01 May 05 - 09:59 AM

My father-in-law has a slightly different version and asks me today - 'why did youg girls in Gosport sing the following in early
19th century'?

sailors, they get all the money,
soldiers they get none but brass,I do love a jolly sailor,
soldiers they may kiss my arse.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gosport Nancy
From: Charley Noble
Date: 01 May 05 - 11:52 AM

The Shambles-

Part of the answer, as was pointed out above, probably lies in the historical fact that for centuries sailors had a share of "prize money" from their capture of enemy merchant ships as well as naval vessels. Soldiers on the other hand had no legal claim to any plunder.

Although the sailors' share of the prize money might appear modest, compared with what the captain or his admiral got, it was still considerably more than their monthly pay and in some cases enough to start a small business ashore.

I also note that the sentiment in the first two verses, collected separately, is radically different and may better represent a cynical parody of the latter verses.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Gosport Nancy
From: GUEST,M
Date: 05 Oct 06 - 08:55 PM

The Rolling Sailor:

There's an absolutely gorgeous version of this song on the Rogue's Gallery cd (a collection of prirate ballads, sea songs and chanteys). The lyrics are slightly different--for example, the chorus is "Oh, my little rolling sailor, oh, my little rolling sea/ how I love my rolling sailor when he's on the rolling sea and it's not "every wife her son" but "she won't have to sleep alone"--but it's the same song.
The verse about soldiers and sailors is a well-known prostitute's ditty of the time. The thing about this song is that the perspective of the different verses varies between wife/sweetheart and whore.

Also, I believe that in all the versions it's not "everybody sailor laddie" but "every bonny sailor laddie". It's easy to hear that if you're just typing the lyrics by ear.

Mr. Noble is right about the soldiers having no money. Soldier's pay was pretty much nothing.

Reiver 2: Kiss my ass in Gaelic is "Póg mo thóin"


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