Interesting Facts about Roll The Cotton Down (D)
Here halyard version of the shanty “Roll the cotton down”, Roll The Cotton Down (D) opens a big family of shanties, which Stan Hugill describes as the shanty with the word ‘Roll’. As a matter of fact, it vies with ‘blow’ and ‘Hilo’ as the most popular word in a sailor’s work song.
The versions of this great shanty are:
(a) Negro Version
(b) Cotton-Stowers’ version
(c) Deep-sea version.
(d) Blackball version.
(e) Paddy and the railway.
(f) “A Long Time Ago”
This version is a “Blackball” version theme version. The book example suggests using more verses from “Blow the Man Down” shanty, I add additional five verses which gives us a reasonable length of the song.
The source of this sea shanty
The music: “Shanties from the Seven Seas” by Stan Hugill (1st ed p 154 ).
The lyrics: “Shanties from the Seven Seas” by Stan Hugill (1st ed p 155 ).
The Record of the Roll The Cotton Down (D)
“Shanties from the Seven Seas” by Stan Hugill (1st ed p 155 ).
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.
The full lyrics
Roll The Cotton Down (D)
Oh! when I was a young man in me prime,
– Roll the cotton down!
I thought I’d ship in the Blackball Line.
– We’ll roll the cotton down!
* 2 *
In the Blackball Line, oh, ye kin shine,
For the ye’ll wake at any old time.
* 3 *
It’s when a Blackballer is bound for sea,
‘Tis then ye’ll see such a hell o’ spree.
* 4 *
There’s tinkers an’ wharf rats, shoemakers an’ all,
All shipped as prime sailorman aboard the Blackball,
* 5 *
Oh, muster ye sojers an’ fakirs an’sich,
An’ hear yer name called by a son-o’-a’bitch.
* 6 *
An’ when the Blackballer hauls out o’ the dock,
To see these poor bastards, how on deck they flock.
* 7 *
‘Lay aft here ye, lubbers! Lay aft one an’ all,
I’ll have none o’ yer dodgers aboard Blackball!”
* 8 *
Now see these poor bastards how aloft they will scoot,
Assisted along by the toe o’ boot.
* 9 *
The second mate stands ’em all up in a row,
A seam in the deck he sure makes ’em all toe.
* 10 *
It’s ‘Fore tawps’l halyards!’ the mate he will roar,
‘Oh, lay along smatly, ye son-o’-a-whore!’