Knock A Man Down

Interesting Facts about the Knock A Man Down

This is one of the earliest versions of the shanty sang at the capstan or at the pump “Blow The Man Down”, this version comes from Cecil Sharp’s “English Folk-Chanteys” (1914). Stan Hugill mentioned is this song was probably the Hoosier version.
“Hoosier” refers to the cotton-Stowers, both black and white, who move cotton bales from docks to the holds of ships, forcing the bales in tightly by means of jackscrews. A low-status job, it nevertheless is referred to in various sea shanty lyrics. “Shanties from the Seven Seas” includes lyrics that mention Hoosiers.
Cecil Sharp in his book says:
“I have supplemented Mr. Short’s words – he could only remember two stanzas – with lines from other versions.
I would also like to thank Artur Pietrzykowski for the wonderful illustration that you can find at the beginning of the record.

The source of this sea shanty

The music: “Shanties from the Seven Seas” by Stan Hugill (1st ed p 200).

The lyrics:  “English Folk Chanteys” by Cecil Sharp (1914).

The Record of the Knock A Man Down

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 musical notation

Knock A Man Down - music notation

The full lyrics

Knock A Man Down

– Knock a man down, kick a man down;
– way ay knock a man down,
– Knock a man down right down to the ground,
– O give me some time to knock a man down.

The watchman’s dog stood ten foot high;
– way ay kno-ck a man down,
The watchman’s dog stood ten foot high;
– O give me some time to knock a man down.

* 2 *

A livery ship and a lively crew.
A livery ship and a lively crew.

* 3 *

O we are the boys to put her through
O we are the boys to put her through

* 4 *

I wish I was in London Town.
I wish I was in London Town.

* 5 *

It’s there we’d make the girls fly round.
It’s there we’d make the girls fly round.

Related to this sea shanty

Sacramento (D)

Banks Of Sacramento – Patterson Capstan version

Sacramento – Version from German barque Gustav

Leave a Comment