To Thread - Forum Home

The Mudcat Café TM
20 messages

Chords Req: Lovely Nancy

09 Nov 00 - 12:53 PM (#337181)
Subject: Lovely Nancy & Lowlands of Holland
From: BeauDangles

Good Afternoon Mudcatters,

Can you help a friend in need? I need chords for two pieces that I would like to perform at a unique event on Nov. 18th. I and some friends am participating in an Elizabethan Evening (an historical reinactment of a sort) and I had thought to perform these two pieces, as they are, if not actually period pieces, at least they are not offensively out of period, and therefore might be acceptable entertainment for the crowd that night. We will also be doing some eliabethan dancing for which I have plenty music. But I would like to do these two songs just to add to the flavor of the evening.

My intention is to accompany myself on octave mandolin, since I don't own a lute and wouldn't even know how to play it if I did. I would like some fairly simple chords, preferably in the key of G or D, or maybe C. Can anybody out there help me?



Click here for Lowlands of Holland

09 Nov 00 - 01:29 PM (#337208)
Subject: RE: Lyr/Chords Req: Lovely Nancy & Lowlands of Ho
From: Noreen

Hi Beau, there are several versions, and tunes, to songs with these titles, hence more info will be necessary!


09 Nov 00 - 01:38 PM (#337218)
Subject: RE: Lyr/Chords Req: Lovely Nancy & Lowlands of Ho
From: BeauDangles

Hmmm...specifics, huh?

Lovely Nancy. I refer to the piece that begins:

Adieu, Sweet lovely Nancy; ten thousand times adieu.
I am going around the ocean, love, to seek for something new.
Come change your ring with me, dear girl. Come change your ring with me,
For it might be a token of our true love, when I am on the sea.

The version I really like is by Popcorn Behavior, sung by Keith Murphy.

The version of Low, Low Lands of Holland that I need is by Dolores Kean & John Faulkner on Broken Hearted I'll Wander.

I can get more details if needed.


09 Nov 00 - 10:29 PM (#337581)
Subject: Lyr Add: FAREWELL LOVELY NANCY (John Renbourn)
From: Melani

There's a very beautiful version of "Farewell Lovely Nancy" on the album "The John Renbourn Group in America," very similar to "Fare Ye Well Lovely Nancy" in the Digitrad database, but with a prettier tune.


Farewell, lovely Nancy, for it's now I must leave you,
Across the salt ocean I am bound for to go,
And though we be parted, my love, be true-hearted,
For I will return in the spring as you know.

She said, "Like a seaboy I will dress and go with you,
In the midst of all dangers your friend I'll remain.
In the cold stormy weather, when the winds they are blowing,
Love, I'll be ready to reef your topsail."

"Oh, your delicate fingers, they can't undo a tackle,
Your delicate feet to a topmast can't go,
And your little behind, love, oh, 'twould freeze in the wind, love,
I'd have you on shore when the cold winds do blow.

Farewell, lovely Nancy, for it's now I must leave you,
And for the West Indies my course I must steer,
And though we be parted, my love, be true-hearted,
For I will return in the spring of the year.

I'm afraid that's going to come out all run together. I don't know how to make line breaks. I wish I were computer-literate enough to give you the tune as well--it's really beautiful. Try to find the album.

10 Nov 00 - 03:30 AM (#337693)
Subject: ADD: Lovely Nancy (Coppers Version)
From: Garry Gillard

Here is the music (and words) for the Coppers version of Lovely Nancy. There are no chords, but they would be just the obvious dominant and subdominant here and there.

hth, Garry

10 Nov 00 - 08:45 AM (#337800)
Subject: RE: Lyr/Chords Req: Lovely Nancy & Lowlands of Ho
From: Snuffy

Of course there are no chords - it is meant to be sung unaccompanied. The voices amke the harmonies.

Wassail! V

07 Jun 03 - 09:43 PM (#963834)
Subject: Lyr Add: LOVELY NANCY
From: Stewart

Here's another version of Farewell Lovely Nancy, found in "A Selection of Some Less Known FOLK-SONGS," Vol. 2, arr. by Cecil J. Sharp, R. Vaughn Williams, and others, compiled by Cyril Winn (© 1909). Novello, London. p. 32.

Transcribed from a recording by Ian Campbell in "Blow The Man Down, Sea Songs and Shanties" - Topic Records TSCD464. This is an great collection of sea songs and shanties by traditional singers, re-released on CD by Topic Records.

LOVELY NANCY – Trad. Somerset, collected by Cecil Sharp

Farewell, my lovely Nancy, for it's now I must leave you,
All on the salt seas I am bound for to go;
But let my long absence be no trouble to you,
For I shall return in the spring, as you know.

Like some pretty little sea boy, I will dress and go with you
In the deepest of danger, I will stand as your friend;
In the cold stormy weather, when the winds are a-blowing,
My dear I'll be willing to wait upon you then.

Well, your pretty little hands they can't handle our tackle,
And your dainty little feet on our topmast can't go;
And the cold stormy weather, love, you can't well endure,
I would have you ashore, when the raging winds do blow.

So fare you well my lovely Nancy, since it's now I must leave you,
All on the salt seas I am bound for to go;
But you must be safe, and be loyal and constant,
For I shall return in the spring, as you know.


Music Score HERE

Cheers, S. in Seattle

08 Jun 03 - 06:34 AM (#963929)
Subject: RE: Lovely Nancy
From: Marje

I hope you're not getting too confused, BeauD - these are two completely different songs with different tunes. Both lovely, but in no respect interchangeable.

The one you're asking about is the Copper family version. As Snuffy says, the chords aren't written down in their version, they're supplied by the voices, but it's really just a three-chord trick (D, G, A), with the odd relative minor if you want to be clever.The Coppers sing it in D. I shoud think C or D would suit most voices, you'll have to try it out with your mandolin.

Low Lands of Holland - Dolores Keane's tune (on the recording I have)is the major-key one that sounds a bit like a Scottish pipe tune, as opposed to the modal/minor one that sounds a bit like Star of the County Down. Great tune, but the melody has quite a big range and jumps for the singer. Again, there's nothing tricky about the chords, just the obvious ones will be fine. She sings it in A but that's really quite low for most voices. C or D might be better.

I think you should have tracked down the words by now with the links above, but let me know if you're still searching.

08 Jun 03 - 06:40 AM (#963930)
Subject: RE: Lovely Nancy
From: Little Robyn

Then there's the Kipper version - "Adieu you pretty Nancy boys..."

08 Jun 03 - 11:52 AM (#964013)
Subject: RE: Lovely Nancy
From: Malcolm Douglas

Although, as Marje points out, (Farewell) Lovely Nancy (or whichever of many titles you choose for it) isn't related to Adieu Sweet Lovely Nancy, it's a nice song. There's a longer set, with tune, in the DT:  FARE YE WELL, LOVELY NANCY: in that case taken from Roy Palmer, Oxford Book of Sea Songs, 1986 (recently republished by Dave Herron as Boxing the Compass, 2001). The DT omits source information; that version was originally noted by Dr George Gardiner (text) and (probably) Charles Gamblin (tune) from George Lovett (born 1841) at Winchester, Hampshire. In January 1909, Ralph Vaughan Williams re-noted the melody because there was some doubt about the notation; it appears that he visited Mr Lovett and recorded his singing for later checking. Usually he gets credited as collector, but it's a bit more complicated than that.

The text Melani posted (a few years ago, now) is essentially Bert Lloyd's re-write of the Sharp set; the arch "reef your topsail" and the reference to Nancy's "behind" don't appear in any traditional or broadside versions that I've seen, and I expect that Lloyd made them up himself.

The Sharp version was noted, as Farewell My Dearest Nancy, from Mrs Susan Williams (73) at Haselbury Plucknett, Somerset, 26 December 1905. It has been a bit polished-up for publication, with a little additional material added. I don't know who changed Mrs Williams' "Dearest Nancy" to "Lovely Nancy"; Sharp himself published the song as Farewell Nancy with that bit unaltered.

There are a few broadside editions at  Bodleian Library Broadside Ballads:

The sailor's adieu.

Laws K14, Roud 527.

08 Jun 03 - 12:10 PM (#964020)
Subject: RE: Lovely Nancy
From: Geoff the Duck

Marje - Beau Dangles might be confused by the fact that the request was posted in November 2000 - two and a half years ago ;¬)
(Although old threads are often worth a new think - we Mudcatters sometimes forget that when a person asked a question with a forthcoming specific event in mind our well meaning follow up years later are certainly too late for THAT event).
Some threads become a worthwhile resource in their own right - e.g. the collection of Uncle Dave Macon lyrics compiled mostly by Stewie following my request for a specific song.
{Coments Definitely NOT intended to annoy anyone!}

08 Jun 03 - 02:42 PM (#964096)
Subject: RE: Lovely Nancy
From: Art Thieme

I wrote a parody of broken token songs called THAT'S THE TICKET that contained Lovely Nancy and her lover in a comedy of errors sort of.

You can find it under that song title in the DT.

Art Thieme

30 Aug 05 - 11:59 AM (#1552833)
Subject: RE: Chords Req: Lovely Nancy
From: joffyB

Don't suppose anyone knows the gtr chords that Tim Hart uses on Folksongs of England album with Maddy Prior? I think it's a perfect accompanyment & would love to try it out. Ta.

30 Nov 09 - 11:00 AM (#2776766)
Subject: RE: Chords Req: Lovely Nancy
From: GUEST,Dobbins

What about the Kathryn Roberts ans Sean Lakeman version called Lovely Nancy? The lyrics are slightly different but it starts "dare you well lovely Nancy ..."

Can't work out the chords as he tuned the guitar slightly flat..

30 Nov 09 - 11:06 AM (#2776771)
Subject: RE: Chords Req: Lovely Nancy


i meant "fare you well lovely Nancy.."


30 Nov 09 - 12:27 PM (#2776846)
From: stallion

perhaps it was this one

Streams of Lovely Nancy

The streams of lovely Nancy - Divide into three parts,
Where young men and maidens – Do a-choose their sweethearts,
For a –drinking sweet liquors – makes their hearts for to sing'
And the noise in the valley – Makes the rocks for to ring

On yonder high mountain – A castle does stand:
It's a-builded of ivory – On yonder black strand
It's a-builded of ivory – And diamonds so bright
It's a pilot for sailors _ On a dark wintry night

On yonder high mountain – Where the wild fowls do fly
There is one fowl among them – That flies very high
If I had my true love – Near the diamonds black land
How soon I would tame her – By the sleight of my hand

We marched from Chester – To Liverpool town,
And there we spied lasses, - Some fair and some brown;
But of all the fine lasses – I ever did see
The voice of my angel – Is the darling for me

03 Mar 10 - 06:30 PM (#2855390)
Subject: RE: Chords Req: Lovely Nancy
From: GUEST,Ch

It's not - that's "The Streamers" by Seth Lakeman - the one being asked for is called "Lovely Nancy" by Sean Lakeman and Kathryn Roberts on their "1" album.

04 Mar 10 - 02:53 AM (#2855601)
Subject: RE: Chords Req: Lovely Nancy
From: ossonflags

Hope this is some help

20 Dec 12 - 12:47 AM (#3454615)
Subject: Chords Add: LOVELY NANCY
From: davidkiddnet

The various MIDI files I find online are not in any major key they are in A Minor. Like this:
Am G   Am Am
Am Em Am Am
C    C   Em Dm
Am Em Am Am

The phrasing goes like this:
Fare ye /
well love-ly /Nan-cy for /I must now /leave you. I am /
bound to th'East /In-dies my /course for to /steer. I /
know ve-ry /well my long /abs-ence will /grieve you, B-ut /
true love, I'll be /back in the /spri-ng of the /year

20 Dec 12 - 10:28 AM (#3454755)
Subject: Chords Add: LOVELY NANCY
From: davidkiddnet

But arguably that Dm at end of line 3 could be easier as a C major:

Am G   Am Am
Am Em Am Am
C    C   Em C
Am Em Am Am

What do you think?