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Origin: Roll Agamemnon Roll / Mars for Evermore

Barry Finn 28 Sep 99 - 10:51 PM
lamarca 28 Sep 99 - 11:42 PM
Barry Finn 28 Sep 99 - 11:54 PM
Martin Ryan.(duplicate) 29 Sep 99 - 02:47 AM
Jon W. 29 Sep 99 - 11:02 AM
Pete peterson 29 Sep 99 - 11:13 AM
Andy 29 Sep 99 - 11:21 AM
Barry Finn 29 Sep 99 - 08:26 PM
AndyG 30 Sep 99 - 05:56 AM
MMario 04 May 01 - 10:42 AM
Martina Ryan 04 May 01 - 12:01 PM
Irish sergeant 04 May 01 - 01:41 PM
Charley Noble 04 May 01 - 02:32 PM
RoyH 04 May 01 - 03:22 PM
Metchosin 04 May 01 - 04:43 PM
fox4zero 04 May 01 - 05:59 PM
Charley Noble 04 May 01 - 06:01 PM
Charley Noble 06 May 01 - 06:37 PM
Little Hawk 06 May 01 - 09:44 PM
Metchosin 06 May 01 - 10:27 PM
Metchosin 07 May 01 - 02:28 AM
Barry Finn 07 May 01 - 07:37 PM
Metchosin 07 May 01 - 08:10 PM
GUEST,LynnT 07 May 01 - 08:30 PM
Barry Finn 07 May 01 - 08:46 PM
Charley Noble 07 May 01 - 08:47 PM
Metchosin 07 May 01 - 11:47 PM
Charley Noble 08 May 01 - 08:13 AM
Little Hawk 27 Jun 01 - 11:00 AM
Metchosin 27 Jun 01 - 12:02 PM
GUEST,JohnB 27 Jun 01 - 12:07 PM
Little Hawk 27 Jun 01 - 12:09 PM
Les from Hull 27 Jun 01 - 12:59 PM
Little Hawk 27 Jun 01 - 01:17 PM
Les from Hull 27 Jun 01 - 01:24 PM
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Subject: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Barry Finn
Date: 28 Sep 99 - 10:51 PM

I'm looking for backround on this (also know as Mars Forevermore) song, if it's trad, where & when did it come if not who wrote it & when did they write it? I haven't sung it in ages & have started to sing it again but I've never been able to find anything about it. Thanks for any help. Barry


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: lamarca
Date: 28 Sep 99 - 11:42 PM

Barry, Holdstock and MacLeod recorded it on their "Deepwater Shanties" tape, and say this about it:

"Nelson commanded the Agamemnon in 1793. His flagship, the Victory, was joined by the 64 gun Agamemnon and the 74 gun Mars at the battle of Trafalger, October 21, 1805."

I don't see it listed under either title in Hugill, Doerflinger, Colcord, Whall, Shay or my musty old "Naval Songs and Ballads" from the British Naval Society (1907?), so you'll prob'ly have to ask Dick Holdstock if he knows any more about it...


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Barry Finn
Date: 28 Sep 99 - 11:54 PM

Hi & Thanks Lamarca. I did know that Dick & Alan did this & I knew some of the backround of the setting, just haven't been able to nail anything on the song itself. I get to see them maybe once every 2 years, knowing me I'll forget to ask the next time I see them. Jeff Warner asked me if I hadn't gotten it from Johnny Collins (nope, from Dick & Alan), that he thought that Johnny had something to do with it or something that could add to it. Never had the pleasure of seeing him, if I do I'll ask him too, as long as I can stay focused & remember. Thanks, Barry


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Martin Ryan.(duplicate)
Date: 29 Sep 99 - 02:47 AM

I have a copy-tape of Johny Collins singing this - only time I've ever heard it.

Regards


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Jon W.
Date: 29 Sep 99 - 11:02 AM

Is this related to Roll Alabama Roll? Perhaps a precedent?


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Pete peterson
Date: 29 Sep 99 - 11:13 AM

Thanks Jon for asking the same question I was mentally asking myself and didn't post. Does anybody know? (If we could see the lyrics for the Agamemnon we could draw our own conclusions, hint hint) Thanks in advance


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Andy
Date: 29 Sep 99 - 11:21 AM

Hi,

I am in touch with Johnny Collins at present on another matter I'll ask him if he has any further info.

Will be mailing him today or tomorrow

O.K.


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Barry Finn
Date: 29 Sep 99 - 08:26 PM

It's not a close to "Roll Alabama Roll" but it is in the DT. Thanks to all of you who sent Dick's address. Last night RiGGy e-mailed me, he had already sent the qusetion to Dick. I don't know weither he'll have an answer, if he does I'll post it here in the meantime if any others have anything on the song please post, thanks. Barry


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: AndyG
Date: 30 Sep 99 - 05:56 AM

MARS FOR EVERMORE lyric, for reference (DT)

Agammenons:
Original members of Nelson'screw from his period as captain of HMS Agammenon, a 74 gun ship of the line. (Numbers of this crew requested transfer to Nelson's new command when he left the vessel.)

Mars:
HMS Mars, another 74, not IIRC ever a command or flagship of Nelsons, but in his fleet at Trafalgar.

thirty ships of the line:
The combined fleets of France and Spain at the Battle of Trafalgar.

The Year of Five:
1805, The Battle of Trafalgar.

Monday, October 21st, 1805.

At daylight saw the Enemy's Combined Fleet from East to E.S.E.; bore away; made the signal for Order of Sailing, and to Prepare for Battle; the Enemy with their heads to the Southward: at seven the Enemy wearing in succession. May the Great God, whom I worship, grant to my Country, and for the benefit of Europe in general, a great and glorious Victory; and may no misconduct in any one tarnish it; and may humanity after Victory be the predominant feature in the British Fleet. For myself, individually, I commit my life to Him who made me, and may his blessing light upon my endeavours for serving my Country faithfully. To Him I resign myself and the just cause which is entrusted to me to defend.
Amen. Amen. Amen.

AndyG


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: MMario
Date: 04 May 01 - 10:42 AM

Can anyone post the tune?


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Martina Ryan
Date: 04 May 01 - 12:01 PM

I've just noticed from the above thread that Martin Ryan has a tape of Johnny Collins singing this song. Isn't that funny, 'cos my name is Martina Ryan, and I have a copy of it too!!

Martina


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Irish sergeant
Date: 04 May 01 - 01:41 PM

Had to say i wondered about the tune myself as the title sequence is so similar to "Roll Alabama, Roll" Kindest reguards to all, Neil


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Charley Noble
Date: 04 May 01 - 02:32 PM

Hey, Barry, did you ever follow through on this?


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: RoyH
Date: 04 May 01 - 03:22 PM

On the notes to 'The Traveller's Rest', Traditional Sound Recordings. TSR 014. by Johnny Collins, he writes that he got the song from Scottish singer Andrew Lees........."a song inspired by the battle of Trafalgar, adapted and arranged from a traditional broadside by A.L.Lloyd" This was Johnny's first album circa 1973. Tradition Records went out of business, their catalogue has recently been bought by Fellside Records.


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Metchosin
Date: 04 May 01 - 04:43 PM

The information I have from Lime Bay Mutiny's tape says they were told by Dick Holdstock also, that it was a broadside adapted by Lloyd for a BBC programme commemorating the Battle of Trafalgar.


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: fox4zero
Date: 04 May 01 - 05:59 PM

Sorry to go off on a tangent, but there is a Afrikaans folk song which translates as"Here Comes The Alabama" which is about a visit of the confedrate raider. Larry


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Charley Noble
Date: 04 May 01 - 06:01 PM

Thanks, Burl and Metchosin. Looks like you nailed it!


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Charley Noble
Date: 06 May 01 - 06:37 PM

refesh!


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Little Hawk
Date: 06 May 01 - 09:44 PM

I love the way the British named ships in those days!

- LH


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Metchosin
Date: 06 May 01 - 10:27 PM

so do I Little Hawk, my great grandfather served on the Endymion, as well as the paddle sloop Spiteful, among others and it always conjures up Horatio Hornblower images in my mind. Although his service was, I think, more pestilance ridden and less romantic. The Spiteful spent time on the Congo River where you were 10 times more likely to die of malaria than by the hand of a pirate or a slave trader.


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Metchosin
Date: 07 May 01 - 02:28 AM

You might get a kick out of some of the other names they managed to come up with, the HMS Pinafore had nothing on the HMS Pansy or the HMS Spanker


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Barry Finn
Date: 07 May 01 - 07:37 PM

Thanks for all the additional info, this goes back a ways. Like I had mentioned in my original post, I forgot I even did this. It's a great & gutsy song I definitly will have to bring this out of the dustbin. Barry


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Metchosin
Date: 07 May 01 - 08:10 PM

little kids love it too, especially the part about the purple gore.


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: GUEST,LynnT
Date: 07 May 01 - 08:30 PM

I'm a US Navy Commander when I'm not gardening or singing. This article was sent me by another Navy officer -- seems appropriate. Enjoy!

Lynn T

What's in a Name? "I NAME THIS SHIP........ " Research, even into the most mundane subject, can sometimes bring unexpected rewards. Recently, for reasons too dull to explain, I was attempting to discover the names of battleships which served with the Royal Navy during the Second World War. The reference librarian hopefully provided me with a huge volume which listed the names of every British warship ever built, and as I leafed through the index, I was impressed by the quality of the names that the British have given their warships. HMS RELENTLESS, HMS REPULSE, HMS RESOLUTION; fine names, names to gladden the heart of every true Brit and dismay any foreigners with a grasp of English. Names redolent of courage and firm-jawed determination - HMS SCEPTRE, HMS SCIMITAR, HMS SEADOG, HMS SPANKER - HMS SPANKER? It had to be a misprint, but when I looked at the relative page there it was, HMS SPANKER, minesweeper. I turned back to the index and soon discovered that HMS SPANKER was not the only warship to bear a silly name. A quick check unearthed the destroyers HMS FAIRY and HMS FROLIC, the light cruiser, HMS SAPPHO and the corvette, HMS PANSY. My first assumption was that these names had been chosen by some fresh faced innocent unaware of their connotations, but a careful reading of the index suggested that the choice of such names was deliberate and malicious. I have no proof for my theory, but I strongly suspect that they were the creations of an embittered clerk. He was a minor bureaucrat who had once dreamed of becoming a naval hero, a second Nelson or Benbow, but had been turned down for active service on the grounds of flat feet and myopia. The Sea Lords, kindly and foolishly, gave him an office job in the Admiralty. There, as he brooded upon the shattering of his ambitions, his envy of the jolly Jack Tars serving in His Majesty's ships turned to hatred and then into a desire to humiliate those who lived a life on the ocean wave. His big break came when he got a job in the Ship's Names Department and he set to work with a will. Having started with HMS PANSY, HMS FAIRY and HMS SPANKER, he moved into sexually suggestive names - HMS TEASER, HMS TICKLER, HMS TORRID, HMS THRUSTER and HMS THRASHER. Not content with the damage to morale that these names must have caused to morale he followed up with HMS INCONSTANT, HMS INSOLENT, HMS TRUANT, HMS DWARF and HMS DORIS. The man must have been twisted, but he was no mean amateur psychologist. Would a hard-pressed admiral be cheered by the news that HMS DORIS and HMS DWARF (a cruiser and gunboat combination that sounds like an avant-garde cabaret act) were steaming to his aid? Could he be certain that HMS TRUANT would turn up? That HMS INCONSTANT wouldn't change sides, or that HMS INSOLENT wouldn't reply to his signals with a stream of abuse? This evil-minded functionary worked hard to destroy fighting spirit, carefully calculating the result of call a ship HMS HAZARD. The cry, "HAZARD to port!" must have disrupted countless naval exercises and I strongly suspect that he tried to name a destroyer HMS MUTINY, thinking of the chaos that would result from the signal "MUTINY in Portsmouth". Someone spotted this and changed his proposed name from the English MUTINY to the French MUTINE, hoping that the ship would stir up trouble on courtesy visits to French ports. If my theory is correct, that someone was Clerk No.2. He worked in the same office as Clerk No.1, but his history and beliefs were very different. He had been invalided out of the Navy after a distinguished career and was a ferocious xenophobe who believed that the British had the right to intimidate and bully anyone who stood in their way. His existence is demonstrated by further study of the list of names. Most people would consider names like HMS CONQUEROR, HMS TERROR and HMS VENGEANCE adequate for the purpose of frightening Britain's enemies. Not Clerk No.2. He thought them namby-pamby and decided to rectify the situation. He wasn't as prolific as Clerk No.1, but he did his best christening such vessels as HMS ARROGANT, HMS IMPERIALIST, HMS SAVAGE, HMS SPITEFUL, HMS SURLY and HMS TYRANT. His finest hour came when he got the job of thinking up names beginning with V, he came up with HMS VANDAL, HMS VENOMOUS, HMS VINDICTIVE and HMS VIOLENT.

He too was a good psychologist - nobody who had dared to challenge Britain could fail to be moved by the news that HMS SPITEFUL, HMS VIOLENT and HMS VINDICTIVE were turning up to sort them out. In later years, as he sat writing letters to the Eastbourne Gazette demanding the reintroduction of public flogging for litter louts, he must have regretted not calling a ship HMS VICIOUS. However, he probably consoled himself with the thought that Clerk No.1 didn't get much of a look in on the V's. He would have christened the ships VACUOUS, VILE, VERMINOUS and VENEREAL. As it was he only managed HMS VANITY, which was presumably a sister ship of HMS NARCISSUS. Though Clerk No.2 no doubt deplored the behaviour of his colleague, he, too, allowed the problems of day-to-day existence to intrude into his work, though only after rows with his wife, hence HMS TERMAGANT, HMS VIRAGO and HMS TIRADE. I don't know for how many years they worked in the same office, but it must have been a fraught relationship. Each probably spent most of his time trying to trump the names of the other. Clerk No.1 christened HMS PANSY, No.2 responded with HMS MANLY. Clerk No.1 - HMS FAIRY, Clerk No.2 - HMS VIRILE. And so it went on until they retired and the ships they had named were either sunk or scrapped. Now our ships have boringly correct names, which is a pity, for names could make a difference. A truly chauvinistic government would do well to study the names dreamed up by Clerk No.2. If we can no longer terrify opponents with the size of our navy, we could try to frighten them with aggressive nomenclature. A good start would be to retrieve the name HMS VIOLENT and call sister ships HMS PSYCHOPATHIC, HMS BLOOD CRAZED and HMS CRIMINALLY INSANE. The Vandal class could include HMS RAM RAIDER, HMS HEADCASE and HMS TERMINATOR. Of course, a more progressive government might go for names which reflected the concerns of the Left - HMS BLACK SECTIONS, HMS STOP CLAUSE 28, HMS UNILATERALIST and HMS BINDING DECISION OF THE PARTY CONFERENCE. Perhaps not, the Daily Mail would have a field day if HMS UNILATERALIST was ever sunk. In any event, the name of the ship doesn't appear to have affected its ability to fight, HMS TRUANT sank the KARLSRUHE, HMS WALLFLOWER and HMS INCONSTANT accounted for several U-boats and I've no doubt that other ships with ridiculous names had excellent war records. But it is hard not to imagine the crew of HMS NARCISSUS leaning over the side to admire their reflections in the water, or the crew of HMS SPANKER being accosted by leather-clad masochists in dockside bars. The crews of such ships must have been relieved when security considerations temporarily ended the practice of having the ship's name emblazoned on the cap-band.


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Barry Finn
Date: 07 May 01 - 08:46 PM

Which brings to mind a ship a former singing partner of mine served on durning Viet Nam, the "Bonny Dick" whose name has been in use all the way back to John Paul Jones. Barry


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Charley Noble
Date: 07 May 01 - 08:47 PM

This may be the final word on names...Thanks, I think.;-)


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Metchosin
Date: 07 May 01 - 11:47 PM

Thanks for posting my link LynnT, I guess the print was too small *BG*


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Charley Noble
Date: 08 May 01 - 08:13 AM

Then there's all those appropriate dingy names such as for the Golden Hind, the Hind End...


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Little Hawk
Date: 27 Jun 01 - 11:00 AM

Oh, for heaven's sake! HMS Spanker was no doubt named with regard to expressions like "a good spanking breeze", meaning "brisk" or "moving along fast". As for the Golden Hind, that was named after a sacred animal out of mythology, the very one that bore the Golden Fleece, as I recall, not after someone's hind end!

Have some forbearance, you vile knaves!

However, here are some more neat potential names for British warships:

HMS INDOLENT, HMS REDUNDANT, HMS INCONTINENT, HMS REPULSIVE, HMS LOQUACIOUS, HMS CANTANKEROUS...

Really, the possibities are endless...

As for the Agamemnon, there is now a superb plank on frame wooden model of her available from a company in England. A very fine looking ship of the line indeed.

- LH


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Metchosin
Date: 27 Jun 01 - 12:02 PM

Actually Little Hawk, a spanker is a fore and aft sail set with a gaff and a boom at the aftermost part of a ship. So it does have something originally to do with the backside.


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: GUEST,JohnB
Date: 27 Jun 01 - 12:07 PM

Johnny Collins is appearing at the Mill Race Festival in Cambridge, well Galt really in Ontario on August 4th. He is also at the Bay City Michigan Tall ships event, sometime around that date =/- week or so. I don't know where you live Barry but I hope you can make one of them. By the way great set of lungs you got there, heard you both Saturday and Sunday nights at Old Songs, I just didn't know who you were. JohnB


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Little Hawk
Date: 27 Jun 01 - 12:09 PM

Ah, yes, right you are, Metchosin!

- LH


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Les from Hull
Date: 27 Jun 01 - 12:59 PM

We've had several HMS Repulses. When you have a lot of ships you've to find a lot of names. During WW2 the US Navy named their submarines after fish and sea creatures. I read somewhere that they had so many subs and were building so many more that they were giving them names that could be given to newly-discovered fish!

Les


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Little Hawk
Date: 27 Jun 01 - 01:17 PM

That very problem may be what led to some countries (like Japan and Germany) numbering their submarines, rather than naming them. The Germans numbered many of their destroyers and other small warships too.

- LH


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Subject: RE: ROLL, AGEMEMNON, ROLL backround inf
From: Les from Hull
Date: 27 Jun 01 - 01:24 PM

LH - what a lack of imagination on the Germans' part. Quite a small navy (apart from the subs, I suppose) and they still couldn't think of names!

Fortunately with Britain's long naval heritage we usually had enough names. When the RN took over one of the German destroyers after the war (it was called Z35 or some such), it was commissioned as HMS Nonsuch!

Les


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