Interesting Facts about the Lay Me Down
“Across The Western Ocean ( 2 )” is the piece of Stan Hugill’s research on the very fine shanty “Heave Away, My Johnnies”. Stan Hugill tells us about he came across a letter referring to the three songs popular in Liverpool ‘free-‘n’-easies’ during the middle of the XIX century, one of these three songs was a ditty: “Across The Western Ocean. Stan Hugill found the author of this letter Mr. T. E. Elwell of the Isle of Man, the result of the correspondence was this verse with the chorus.
Stan Hugill doesn’t mention the melody for this ditty, but I expect the melody to this ditty comes from the song that predeceases this song in Stan Hugill’s book, which is “Lay Me Down”, so this melody I will use, to reconstruct that beautiful lyric, and will try to turn into a song. The lyrics in some places didn’t match the melody sometimes the length of the phrases is too short, so I will try to repeat some fragments of the phrases to match the music notation and not do much harm to the original climate of the lyrics.
The source of this song
The music: “Shanties from the Seven Seas” by Stan Hugill (1st ed: p 299).
The lyrics: “Shanties from the Seven Seas” by Stan Hugill (1st ed: p 300).
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
The full lyrics
Across The Western Ocean ( 2 )
‘Have you got an emigrant ship that’s bound for Amer-i-kay?’
‘Oh, yes! I have an emigrant ship,
I have got one or two;
I’ve got the Georgie Walker and I’ve got the Kangaroo.
– Oh! here we go, there we go,
– Lay me down do,
– Here we go, there we go,
– Mrs. O’Halligan, too,
– Jenny, hooroo!
– Fire away, laddie, I’ll bully for you!