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Origins: Drunken Sailor

DigiTrad:
DRUNKEN SAILOR


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TS 20 May 04 - 01:47 PM
Amos 20 May 04 - 03:59 PM
TS 20 May 04 - 04:05 PM
GUEST,MMario 20 May 04 - 04:20 PM
Q 20 May 04 - 04:51 PM
Malcolm Douglas 20 May 04 - 05:22 PM
Gareth 20 May 04 - 07:06 PM
Shanghaiceltic 20 May 04 - 07:16 PM
Q 20 May 04 - 07:26 PM
Micca 20 May 04 - 07:33 PM
Flash Company 21 May 04 - 05:39 AM
TS 21 May 04 - 09:18 AM
Dave Bryant 21 May 04 - 10:56 AM
GUEST 21 May 04 - 11:01 AM
radriano 21 May 04 - 04:21 PM
Q 21 May 04 - 04:50 PM
GUEST,Chip2447 21 May 04 - 06:17 PM
s&r 21 May 04 - 07:06 PM
GUEST 27 May 04 - 08:18 PM
JWB 27 May 04 - 11:00 PM
George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca 28 May 04 - 02:26 PM
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Subject: Origins: Drunken Sailor
From: TS
Date: 20 May 04 - 01:47 PM

Interesting thing seen on TV last night. Not sure what the program was. Anywho, the scene was that of some beaches and docks in Brighton, England. I've always sung the song and referred to it as simply an old Sea Shanty. Anyone know of any particular links between Brighton and "Drunken Sailor"?.....Slainte!


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Subject: RE: Origins: Drunken Sailor
From: Amos
Date: 20 May 04 - 03:59 PM

I am sure there were plenty of drunken sailors in Brighton; but for some reason I had thought of that song as a Yankee tune.

A


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Subject: RE: Origins: Drunken Sailor
From: TS
Date: 20 May 04 - 04:05 PM

oops..forgot to add in there...the point was....they were showing the scene from Brighton, and Drunken Sailor was playing in the background....wondering if it was justa fitting song of the Sea, or if there was purpose for it....Slainte!


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Subject: RE: Origins: Drunken Sailor
From: GUEST,MMario
Date: 20 May 04 - 04:20 PM

no references - but found a qoute on the internet saying it was "pre-1839 and based on an Irish dance tune"


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Subject: RE: Origins: Drunken Sailor
From: Q
Date: 20 May 04 - 04:51 PM

"Drunken Sailor" AKA "Hooray an' Up She Rises," was reported in Olmstead, F. A., "Incidents of a Whaling Voyage," 1841, about a voyage in 1839-40. This was the first mention. Hugill says, "Sung by the Indiamen of the John Company." The chantey is probably English.

What tune was used at that time is not known.
Probably more than one tune was used over time. Stan Hugill is the source for the attribution to an Irish Dance (and march) tune, which he does not identify. See Hugill, "Shanties From the Seven Seas," 1961 and reprints.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Drunken Sailor
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 20 May 04 - 05:22 PM

The tune is virtually the same as Oro se do bheatha bhaile, and that fact has been remarked upon in several threads, I think. It's a simple development of a basic trichord, though (or some such technical term) so that doesn't necessarily mean that there's any direct connection, though of course there may well be. Similar tunes turn up all over the place.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Drunken Sailor
From: Gareth
Date: 20 May 04 - 07:06 PM

Hmmm ! Practical note. Brighton was not noted as a Port - Shoreham, just down the coast in one direction, Newhaven, just up the coast in the other direction were.

Landings at Brighton by Barges, Coasters, and Colliers whe beachin jobs.

Gareth


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Subject: RE: Origins: Drunken Sailor
From: Shanghaiceltic
Date: 20 May 04 - 07:16 PM

According to Sea Shanties Part 1 published in 1921 it was a windlass or capstan shanty, but sometimes used for hand-over-hand hauling. It is unusual as it is one of the few shanties sung in quick time.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Drunken Sailor
From: Q
Date: 20 May 04 - 07:26 PM

"Oro se do bheatha ..."- Welcome lady of great sorrow? The words don't seem suited to a dance or march.
Are there happier lyrics to the tune?


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Subject: RE: Origins: Drunken Sailor
From: Micca
Date: 20 May 04 - 07:33 PM

It was the contention of the Shantyman ( Bert Grey of Shetland, sailed on Baltic square riggers in the 30's) I sailed with (and learned much from)in the 60's that "Drunken Sailor" was a show off, virtuoso piece for the shantyman to show off his skill at improvising, and weaving "local colour" about his own ship and anything else he thought of, into the verses. He (Bert) said usually only the opening and closing verses were the "standard" ones, the rest were made up on the spot!!! and I have always avoided singing it, but on the very few occassions I have done so, I have tried to do the same, singing only the standard opening and closing and improvising each verse as I went along.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Drunken Sailor
From: Flash Company
Date: 21 May 04 - 05:39 AM

One of my work colleagues was singing this in the office one day, so as I passed I threw in 'Shave him on the belly with a rusty razor', he fell about , and that became his favourite threat for customers who upset him, 'Ill shave him on the belly.....'

fc


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Subject: RE: Origins: Drunken Sailor
From: TS
Date: 21 May 04 - 09:18 AM

fc..better then the verse I usually sing..."shave his balls with a rusty razor..."....thanks for the info Catters!......Slainte!


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Subject: RE: Origins: Drunken Sailor
From: Dave Bryant
Date: 21 May 04 - 10:56 AM

only the opening and closing verses were the "standard" ones, the rest were made up on the spot

I'm sure that would have been true of many shanties - after all the number of verses you needed for a job could vary greatly depending on the conditions and the number of men who were working. Topical verses would always have been popular.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Drunken Sailor
From: GUEST
Date: 21 May 04 - 11:01 AM

same way with wauking songs - accounts tell that the openings were usually the same -and usually the ending - but the center verses were usually current "gossip"


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Subject: RE: Origins: Drunken Sailor
From: radriano
Date: 21 May 04 - 04:21 PM

"Drunken Sailor" might just be the first shanty that came to mind for them. You know, in much the same way that everytime you see a funeral depicted where there are bagpipes involved they invariably play "Amazing Grace."


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Subject: RE: Origins: Drunken Sailor
From: Q
Date: 21 May 04 - 04:50 PM

"Amazing Grace" is rare in older hymnbooks. It is a modern phenomenon.
I wonder how often the Drunken Sailor was chanted in the 19th c.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Drunken Sailor
From: GUEST,Chip2447
Date: 21 May 04 - 06:17 PM

Origins of a Drunken sailor...

Take one sailor, the longer at sea the better.
Toss in a liberty call and mix well with copious amounts of alcohol. Bingo...one drunken sailor.

For those of you who have never had the pleasure of a puking, stinking, slobbering, goofy, pie eyed shipmate, it's fairly easy to come up with ways to torture the poor soul. And quite easy for your shipmates to find ways to torture you when its your turn...

"Put him in a dress and leave him in a whorehouse"
"Tie him up with dental floss"
"Trice up his rack with him still in it"
"Get yourself a grog and get drunk with him"

Chip2447


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Subject: RE: Origins: Drunken Sailor
From: s&r
Date: 21 May 04 - 07:06 PM

I remember reading somewhere that the sailor drunk on duty was punished severely for risking his shipmates lives; keelhauling, hosing in the scuppers, and the Captain's daughter were nasty sometimes fatal punishments. Came acrrross this trawling the web

"Another whip favored by more brutal Quartermasters was the "Captain's daughter" (sometimes called the "gunner's daughter.") It had 32 lashes instead of nine, and despite the name was still only brandished by the QT. In the famous sea shanty "What do you do with a Drunken Sailor?" the line commonly sung as "…throw him in bed with the Captain's daughter" was originally sung as: "…give him a taste of the Captain's daughter," a much more befitting punishment for being drunk on duty."


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Subject: Drunken Sailor song help!
From: GUEST
Date: 27 May 04 - 08:18 PM

i am looking for the song with the bagpipe version, it also has drums on it as well. It seems to be a very old version of the song. If anyone can tell me the name of the band that is doing that cover that would be nice. It is the song with just the pipes and the drums and thats it

please help me

e-mail me if you can do such a thing
free_meal_Celebrity@yahoo.com


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Subject: RE: Origins: Drunken Sailor
From: JWB
Date: 27 May 04 - 11:00 PM

I heard Stan Hugill assert, at a festival, that Drunken Sailor was a "stamp and go" chantey, used on British ships with big crews. The stamp and go technique of hauling a halyard had the crew line up along the halyard, which was laid out upon the deck. They faced away from the standing portion and, picking up the line, walked away in rhythym, stamping and singing. When a sailor went as far as he could go, he dropped the line and ran back to the block, picking up the halyard again. So, with a big enough crew you'd get a sort of conveyorbelt effect. The march tempo of Drunken Sailor lends itself to this practice.

The Honorable East India Company's ships were big, with large crews, and they tended to follow naval procedure more than other merchantmen. That may explain why the chantey refers to such punishment -- I don't know that merchant captains employed a "captain's daughter". Since the Royal Navy didn't allow chanteying, but the song has a touch of the navy in it, I'm inclined to agree with Hugill that it was created (or at least popularized) by John Company men.

Jerry


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Subject: RE: Origins: Drunken Sailor
From: George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca
Date: 28 May 04 - 02:26 PM

Guest,
That only happened with a few waulking songs. Many waulking songs were composed and had typically women's themes for subject matter. Depending on the length of time needed, if you had to improvise, then yes, "gossip" items were filtered in. Usually it would be of the teasing variety. For instance if it was known a girl was longing for a fellow or if they had been seen holding hands, etc, either of their names might be mentioned in extemporaneous verses. Made for lots of fun. Of course this sort of thing was not done when menfolk were around.


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