A-Rovin’ (B)

Interesting Facts about A-Rovin’ (B)

At first, Anderson, the Scottish carpenter already mentioned, said that in his ship – one of Vickers’ big four-masters from Liverpool – the usual method of singing A-Rovin’ (B) was as follows.

Note the omission of the refrain “Mark well what I do say!”

Due to my research, I discover a big mismatch in speed on how the shanties are sung in nova days. So the first question is what type of pump has been used when sailors sang this sea shanty, Stan Hugill talks about the “Downton” pump, so I did research everywhere to find the movie showing sailors at work, and it was only one that looks sensible to me is the movie you can find on YouTube with the title “Traditional bilge pump worked on James Craig tall ship“.

To explain, In this type of pump such as A-Rovin’ (B), sailors installed on the ends of bars ropes (bell-rope), to make the job easier by taking more sailors involved in pumping. In this 0.25 min of this super unique movie, you can watch real pumping with bell ropes: bell ropes pumping work – this will be a template to me when I will sing all “Downton” Shanties such as “Lowlands” family, “Strike The Bell” and so on.

To conclude this version will be sung as exactly as possible (probably forgotten decades ago), with tempo and way of singing pump shanty.

The source of this sea shanty

The music: “Shanties from the Seven Seas” by Stan Hugill (1st ed p 49).

The lyrics: “Shanties from the Seven Seas” by Stan Hugill (1st ed p 48, 49).

The Record of the A-Rovin’ (B)

Afterward here record of this beautiful shanty, with a presentation to proxy actual work on the pump.

You also can find this record on my YouTube channel here or directly listen below. Additionally, if you want to share your opinion about the record or share your opinion you can do it in my Facebook forum here, or leave a comment at the bottom of this blog article.

A-Rovin’ (B) - Pump Shanty

The musical notation

a-rovin-b - sea shanty musical notation

The full lyrics

A-Rovin’ ( B ) – Pump Shanty
(alternate titles: Amsterdam or The Maid of Amsterdam)

In Amsterdam there lived a maid
And she was mistress of her trade
We’ll go no more a-rovin’ with you fair maid
– A-rovin’, a-rovin’, since rovin’s bin me overthrow,
– We’ll go no more a-rovin’ with you fair maid

* 2 *

One night I crept from my abode
To meet this fair maid down the road.
We’ll go no more a-rovin’ with you, fair maid.

– A-rovin’, a-rovin’, since rovin’s bin me overthrow,
– We’ll go no more a-rovin’ with you fair maid

* 3 *

I met this fair maid after dark,
An’ took her to her favourite park.

* 4 *

I took this fair maid for a walk,
An’ we had such a lovin’ talk.

* 5 *

I put me arm around her waist,
Sez she, ‘Young man, yer in great haste!’

* 6 *

I put me hand upon her knee,
Sez she, ‘Young man, yer rather free!’

* 7 *

I put me hand upon her thigh,
Sez she, ‘Young man, yer rather high!’

* 8 *

I towed her to the Maiden’s Breast,
From south the wind veered wes’sou’west [sou’sou’west].

* 9 *

An’ the eyes in her head turned east an’ west,
And her thoughts wuz as deep as an ol’ sea-chest.

* 10 *

We had a drink—of grub a snatch,
We sent two bottles down the hatch.

* 11 *

Her dainty arms wuz white as milk,
Her lovely hair wus soft as silk

* 12 *

Her heart wuz poundin’ like a drum,
Her lips wuz red as any plum.

* 13 *

We laid down on a grassy patch,
An’ I felt such a ruddy ass.

* 14 *

She pushed me over on me back,
She laughed so hard her lips did crack.

* 15 *

She swore that she’d be true to me,
But spent me pay-day fast and free.

* 16 *

In three weeks’ time I wuz badly bent,
Then off to sea I sadly went.

Related to this sea shanty

A-Rovin’ (A)

A-Rovin’ (A2)

A- Rovin’ (C)

1 thought on “A-Rovin’ (B)

  1. In Amsterdam, there lived a maid and she was tall and Fair, her eyes were blue and cheeks were red and she had auburn hair…..Kenyan Schools….

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