#02327
Ferryland Sealer (Great Big Sea) video
See also: Ferryland Sealer (Rankin Street)
And also: The Sealers (Captain John T White)
#389: YouTube video by BetweenTheRock
©2008 ~ Used with permission ~

Our schooner and our sloop
in Ferryland they do lie,
She's already rigged to be
bound for the ice;
All you lads of the Southern,
we will have you to beware,
She's going to the ice
in the spring of the year.
Laddie whack fall the laddie,
laddie whack fall the day.

Our course be east-north-east
for two days and two nights,
Our captain he cried out,
"Boys, look ahead for the ice!"
He hove her around
standing in for the land,
'Twas in a few more hours
he was firm in the jam.
Laddie whack fall the laddie,
laddie whack fall the day.

Our captain he cried out,
"Come on, boys, lend a hand!"
Our cook he makes the breakfast
and each man takes a dram;
With our bats in our hands
it was earlye for to go,
Every man showed his action
w'thout the missing of a blow.
Laddie whack fall the laddie,
laddie whack fall the day.

Some were killing some were sculping,
some were hauling on board,
Some more they went firing
and a-missing of their loads;
In the dusk of the evening
all hands in from the cold,
We counted nine hundred
fine sculps in the hold.

We're now off Cape Spear,
in sight of Cape Broyle,
We'll dance, sing, carouse, me boys,
in just a little while;
We'll soon enjoy the charms
of our sweethearts and our friends,
But it will not be long before
we're down in the bends.
Laddie whack fall the laddie,
laddie whack fall the day.

Our schooner and our sloop
in Ferryland they do lie,
She's already rigged to be
bound for the ice;
All you lads of the Southern,
we will have you to beware,
She's going to the ice
in the spring of the year.
Laddie whack fall the laddie,
laddie whack fall the day.
Fall the laddie,
laddie whack fall the day.

####.... Author unknown. Traditional Newfoundland ballad ....####
This variant arranged and recorded by Great Big Sea (Turn, trk#8, 1999, Sire Records, New York, New York).

The video above features Great Big Sea singing about an entirely different kind of ocean voyage, performed on the Norwegian Jewel pool deck during the Great Big Sea Sailaway Show. Ships & Dip V cruise in February 2009.

A variant was also recorded as Ferryland Sealer by Rankin Street (Pre-GBS tape - Live At The Blarneystone Pub in St John's, NL, trk#1, 1991, NRA Productions, Ltd).


See more songs by Great Big Sea.

A variant was also sung as The Sealers by Captain John T White of Prince Edward Island and Maine, and published in Minstrelsy Of Maine, 1927.

A variant was collected by Kenneth Peacock in 1961 from Leonard Hulan [1881-1964] of Jeffrey's, NL, and published in Songs Of The Newfoundland Outports, Volume 1, pp.120-121, by The National Museum of Canada (1965) Crown Copyrights Reserved.

Kenneth Peacock noted that this fine old sealing song is one of the finest native ballads to come out of Newfoundland. He found a similar five-verse variant by George William Decker [1878-1962] of Rocky Harbour, NL. He also noted the song is not known in Ferryland. Peacock added that the word 'Southern' in verse one refers to the Southern Shore, a local expression for the stretch of coastline extending over one hundred miles south of St John's, NL.

A variant was also recorded by The Punters on their self-titled debut album (The Punters, trk#11, 1995, The Sound Solution, St John's NL).


See more songs by The Punters.

From the Dictionary Of Newfoundland English:
Bend - heavy timber forming one of the principal ribs of a boat or vessel.
Sculping - process of removing the skin and blubber from a seal.



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