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Lyr Req/Add: Alabama John Cherokee

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harpgirl 12 Aug 05 - 10:04 PM
katlaughing 12 Aug 05 - 11:16 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 13 Aug 05 - 12:28 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 13 Aug 05 - 01:16 AM
Dave Hanson 13 Aug 05 - 02:56 AM
katlaughing 13 Aug 05 - 03:06 PM
Lighter 13 Aug 05 - 03:22 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 15 Aug 05 - 12:56 AM
Barry Finn 18 Aug 06 - 05:57 PM
Charley Noble 18 Aug 06 - 11:01 PM
Barry Finn 20 Aug 06 - 12:26 PM
paddymac 20 Aug 06 - 03:48 PM
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Subject: Lyr Req: Alabama John Cherokee
From: harpgirl
Date: 12 Aug 05 - 10:04 PM

I was trying to find any more versions of this song and an entire thread on it. Can anyone point me to it?


John Cherokee
Traditional - Lyrics from Songs of American Sailormen, by Joanna Colcord


John Cherokee was an Indian man,
Alabama, John Cherokee!
He run away every time he can,
Alabama, John Cherokee!
Way ay yah!
Alabama, John Cherokee!
Way ay yah!
Alabama, John Cherokee!

They put him aboard a Yankee ship,
Again he gave the boss the slip.

They catch him again and chain him tight,
And starve him many days and nights.

He have nothing to drink and nothing to eat,
So he just gone dead at the boss's feet.

So they bury him by the old gate post,
And the day he died, you can see his ghost.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alabama John Cherokee
From: katlaughing
Date: 12 Aug 05 - 11:16 PM

According to the supersearch there is a thread with some verses, don't know if they are the same as I cannot get it to come up. It was posted by WillieO in a thread titled "Hull, Halifax and Hell," but when I put that in the thread name filter and set the date to "All" nothing by that name came up.

There were several other references to it in various threads in the supersearch but when you click on them the system still is confused and takes you to a completely different posting and thread.

kat


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alabama John Cherokee
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 13 Aug 05 - 12:28 AM

Supposedly collected by Hugill but recorded in neither "Shanties and Sailors' Songs" nor "Shanties from the Seven Seas." A fairly recent shanty-singers invention? See John Cherokee
Some variants in these: Jesse Schaffer
and Colcord: Colcord


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alabama John Cherokee
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 13 Aug 05 - 01:16 AM

The song makes no sense. There were no Cherokee in Miramichi (or anywhere in Canada or northern U. S.).
The Cherokees from western Georgia were forceably moved to Indian Territory in the 1830s (read about the "Trail of Tears," more than 4000 died). They were not slaves, but farmers and cattle ranchers; a few were slave-holders.

Willie-O in thread 9490 says it is a good yell and scream song.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alabama John Cherokee
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 13 Aug 05 - 02:56 AM

Sea shanties don't have to make sense, it's just a rythm to get everyone pulling together.

eric


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alabama John Cherokee
From: katlaughing
Date: 13 Aug 05 - 03:06 PM

ChanteyRanger says, in an old thread, the ethnicity of John Cherokee was West Indies.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alabama John Cherokee
From: Lighter
Date: 13 Aug 05 - 03:22 PM

Sorry, Q. "John Cherokee" is on pp. 438-39 of Hugill's "Shanties from the Seven Seas" (1961). The version given at the Mariners Museum site replaces Hugill's repeated "With a hauley high, an' a hauley low !" with Colcord's "Way ay yah," but otherwise the lyrics are Hugill's.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Alabama John Cherokee
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 15 Aug 05 - 12:56 AM

The Mystic Seaport edition of Hugill's "Shanties from the Seven Seas" (1994) has only 428pp. Some material was thrown out for the Second Edition. The Mystic reprint doesn't say, but apparently it is taken from the Second Edition.


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Subject: Add Verses: Alabama John Cherokee
From: Barry Finn
Date: 18 Aug 06 - 05:57 PM

Hi Folks
I used to sing this a long time ago & I'm resurrecting it. I forgot how much I enjoyed singing it.
Hugill has it as Alabama or as an alternative just John Cherokee & says that his friend Harding states that it was common among "colored crowds in the old West Indian Traders". He has the chorus as "With a hauley high, an' a hauley low" instead of the more common version which Captain Robinson's version in 'The Bellman' (Minneapolis 1917) has which is "Way-aye-yah. He believes it comes to sea by way of cotton hoosiers of Mobile & aslo believes it dates back to slavery days either in the West Indies or the Southern Staes.Colcord has this as "John Cherokee" & she says "some of the verbs & the phrase "'just gone dead'" lead me to suspect that it may be of West Indian orgin". Then she quotes Captain Robinson "I heard it during the Civil War at Nassau, while the crew was loading cotton on the ship 'Hilja'...Probably it started without any naval quality, & was adapted for such use by reason of it's vigor & swing", he has this being used at the capstan.

This is what I have, compiled from mostly Hugill & Colcord with the chorus being as Joanna Colcord has it from The Bellman. The 10th verse comes from Peter Marston's companion songster used for educational programs (televised, which sadly ended many yrs ago as Adventures of the Mimi, I think) aboard his S/V Mimi, Glouchester, Mass. The beginnings of verses 9 & 10 I change slighly so that they could follow each other & still make sense. Verses 8 is the ending from Captain Robinson & verse 11 is Hugill's ending.
For such a well know & sung song it's surprisinly missing from the collections of Whall, Harlow, Shay, Hunington, Doerflinger, Terry & Sampson.

So if anyone has additional verses &/or info on this would you be so kind to add to it here.
Thanks to all
Barry

Alabama John Cherokee

1.)Alabama John Cherokee
This is the tale of John Cherokee
Alabama John Cherokee!
Indian man from Miramichi
Alabama John Cherokee! Way, Hey, Yah!
Alabama, John Cherokee! Way, Hey, Yah!
Alabama, John Cherokee!


2.)John Cherokee was an Indian man,
Alabama, John Cherokee!
He run away every time he can.
Alabama, John Cherokee! Way, Hey, Yah!
Alabama, John Cherokee! Way, Hey, Yah!
Alabama, John Cherokee!

3.)They put him a-board of a Whaling ship,
Again an' again he gave 'em the slip.

4.)The captain come up & put him in chains
An' they beat his hide again an' again

5.)They catch him again and chained him up tight,
Down below where there is no light.

6.)They give nothing to eat & nothing to drink
Until his bones began to clink

7.)Nothing to drink and nothing to eat,
He just fall dead at the old man's feet.

8.)So they bury him by the old gate post,
The day he died you can see his ghost.

9.)Some times at night his ghost can be seen
Sitting on the main truck, all wet & green.

10.)Some other times his ghost can be seed
A-sitting at the topmast left to bleed

11.)At the break of day he goes below
For that is where the cocks do crow.


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Subject: RE: Add Verses: Alabama John Cherokee
From: Charley Noble
Date: 18 Aug 06 - 11:01 PM

Barry-

There seems to be a 2.5 verse missing from how we sing it although I'm not sure where ithe verse comes from:

Well, they made 'im a slave down in Alabam'...
He run away every chance he can...

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Add Verses: Alabama John Cherokee
From: Barry Finn
Date: 20 Aug 06 - 12:26 PM

Nobody cares for Indian music anymore?

Refresh?

Barry


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Subject: RE: Add Verses: Alabama John Cherokee
From: paddymac
Date: 20 Aug 06 - 03:48 PM

The first and only recording I have ever encountered of this song is by The Black Brothers. An incredible bit of music.


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