#00738
Greenland Whale Fishery (Rankin Street) videos
See also: Whaling Song (Kenneth Peacock)
#1784: YouTube video by alexmatchim
©2010 ~ Used with permission ~

midi file   alt: midi file

Click Here for tabs.

In eighteen hundred and forty-six,
On March the eighteenth day;
We hoisted our colours to the top of the mast,
And for Greenland sailed away, brave boys,
And for Greenland sailed away.

And when we reached that fine foreign shore,
Our goodly ship to moor;
We wished ourselves back home again,
With the girls upon the shore, brave boys,
With the girls upon the shore.

The lookout in the cross-tree stood,
A spy glass in his eye (in his eye)
Overhaul, overhaul, let your big boats fall,
And you'll put your boats to sea, brave boys,
And you'll put your boats to sea.

The captain stood on the quarterdeck,
The ice was in his eyes (in his eyes)
There's a whale, there's a whale, and a whalefish, he cried,
And she blows at every span, brave boys,
And she blows at every span.

The harpoon struck and the line played out,
In a single flurry of his tail (of his tail)
He capsized our boat and we lost five men,
And we did not catch that whale, brave boys,
And we did not catch that whale.

The losing of those five jolly men,
It grieved our captain sore (he was poisoned)
But the losing of that fine sperm whale,
Now it grieved him ten times more, brave boys,
Now it grieved him ten times more.

Oh, Greenland is a barren land,
A land that bears no green;
Well, there's ice and there's snow, and the whale fishes blow,
And an ale I've seldom seen, brave boys,
And an ale I've seldom seen.

In eighteen hundred and forty-seven,
On March the seventeenth day (Paddy's Day)
We hoisted our colours to the top of the mast,
And for Greenland we set sail, brave boys,
And for Greenland we set sail.

####.... Author unknown. Variant of a 19th-century British broadside ballad [Laws K21] American Balladry From British Broadsides (G Malcolm Laws, 1957). Also a variant of a 19th-century British broadside ballad, Greenland Whale Fishery, published by W Armstrong (Liverpool) sometime between 1820 and 1824, and archived at the Bodleian Library Broadside Ballads, shelfmark: 2806 c.17(160) ....####
This variant arranged and recorded by Rankin Street (Pre-GBS tape - Live At The Blarneystone Pub in St John's, NL, trk#19, 1991, NRA Productions, Ltd).

See more songs by Great Big Sea.

The video below features a recording of The Greenland Whale Fisheries by Ryan's Fancy (Dark Island - A Portrait Of Ryan's Fancy, trk#3, ©1971, Audat Records, Oshawa, Ontario).

See more songs by Ryan's Fancy.

#84: YouTube video by quickaccent2006
©2007 ~ Used with permission ~

A variant was recorded as Greenland Whale Fishery by Siochána (Cops For Cancer - On The Beat, 2000).
Siochana
See more songs by Siochána.

A variant was collected in 1952 from Thomas Sullivan [1875-?] of King's Cove, NL, by Kenneth Peacock and published as Whaling Song in Songs Of The Newfoundland Outports, Volume 1, pp.147-148, by The National Museum Of Canada (1965) Crown Copyrights Reserved. Kenneth Peacock noted that though seemingly of mid-nineteenth century composition this sea ballad originated more than one hundred years earlier as a black letter broadside telling a similar tale before 1725. Peacock also noted that the heyday of the Greenland whale fishery was in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, and three broadside versions, issued by Pitts, Catnach, and Such, appeared during this period. All the variants collected in the North Atlantic region are based upon, or influenced by these later broadsides.

A variant was also recorded as Greenland Whale Fisheries by Celtic Connection on their albums: The Celtic Connection, Best Of The Celtic Connection 10 Years Together, and Singalongs & Shanties 2. The Celtic Connection variant was also recorded on Downhomer Presents, Newfoundland Favourites, Volume 4 (Avondale Music 2004).


See more songs by Celtic Connection.

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Notes On Tabs:
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
All tabs have been contributed by visitors to this site and represent their interpretation of the tune. We are unable to verify their accuracy.

~ Chords as per The Celtic Connection variant ~

(Capo 2nd Fret)

(A cappella in original recording.
Chords are used here for personal preference.)

In [G] eighteen hundred and [D/F#] forty- [G] six,
On [C] March the [G] eighteenth [D/F#] day;
We [G] hoisted our colours to the [C] top [Bm] of the [Am] mast,
And for [G] Greenland [D7/F#] we set [G] sail, brave boys,
And for Greenland [D7/F#] we set [G] sail.

When we reached that [D/F#] fine foreign [G] shore,
Our [C] goodly [G] ships to [D/F#] moor;
We [G] wished ourselves back [C] ho- [Bm] me a-[Am] gain,
With the [G] girls up- [D7/F#] on the [G] shore, brave boys,
With the girls up- [D7/F#] on the [G] shore.

The lookout in the [D/F#] cross-beam [G] stood,
A [C] spy glass [G] in his [D/F#] eye (in his eye);
Over- [G] haul, overhaul, let your [C] big [Bm] boats [Am] fall,
And we'll [G] put your [D7/F#] boats to [G] sea, brave boys,
And we'll put your [D7/F#] boats to [G] sea.

The captain stood on the [D/F#] quarter- [G] deck,
The [C] ice was [G] in his [D/F#] eyes (in his eyes);
There's a [G] whale, there's a whale, there's a [C] whale- [Bm] fish, he [Am] cried,
And she [G] blows at [D7/F#] every [G] span, brave boys,
And she blows at [D7/F#] every [G] span.

Interlude: (verse chords)

Well the harpoon struck, and the [D7/F#] line flared [G] out,
With a [C] single [G] flurry of his [D7/F#] tail (of his tail);
He cap- [G] sized our boat and we [C] lost [Bm] five [Am] men,
And we [G] did not [D7/F#] catch that [G] whale, brave boys,
And we did not [D7/F#] catch that [G] whale.

The losing of those [D7/F#] five jolly [G] men,
It [C] grieved our [G] captain [D7/F#] so;
But the [G] losing of that [C] fine [Bm] whale [Am] fish,
Now it [G] grieved me [D7/F#] ten times [G] more, brave boys,
Now it grieved me [D7/F#] ten times [G] more.

(Key Change
Slide the capo up two frets and use same chords.)

(A cappella on original recording.)

Now Greenland is a barren land,
A land that bears no green;
Well there's ice and there's snow, and the whale fishes blow,
And the daylight seldom seen, brave boys,
And the daylight seldom seen.

In [G] eighteen hundred and [D/F#] forty- [G] six,
On [C] March the [G] seventeenth [D/F#] day;
We [G] hoisted our colours to the [C] top [Bm] of the [Am] mast,
And for [G] Greenland [D7/F#] we set [G] sail, brave boys,
And for Greenland [D7/F#] we set [G] sail.
And for Greenland [D7/F#] we set [G] sail.

~ Chords contributed by Bob Dumais ~


line

Index Page
GEST Songs Of Newfoundland And Labrador



line

~ Copyright Info ~

~ Privacy Policy ~

Confirm Valid XHTML 1.0 Transitional Here