“Good Morning, Ladies All (I)”

Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1914 (Sharp-EFC)
Keywords: shanty ship disease animal
Found in: Britain West Indies

Description

Capstan shanty. Title from second chorus: "Ah-ha, me yaller gals, Good mornin', ladies all." A packet heads out "bound to hell," the crew is mostly wiped out by "Yaller Jack" (yellow fever) and take on some monkeys as a crew.

Notes

Hugill claims that any shanty including the phrase "Good morning, ladies all" would be of Negro origin, and had collected this from Tobago Smith, a West Indian shantyman. He also speculates that this may be a rumored but as yet undocumented shanty which tells the story of a crew of monkeys taking charge of a ship, but the three verses he had weren't enough to be sure. Sharp's verses don't even get that far, but the tune is pretty much the same. Sharp says this has some affinity with "Heave Away, Me Johnnies," though I couldn't see it, except for a couple notes in the tune of the chorus. - SL

References

  1. Hugill pp. 349-351, "Good Morning, Ladies All" (2 texts, 2 tunes; the "a" text is this piece, while "b" is "Good Morning, Ladies All (II)") [AbEd, p. 262]
  2. Sharp-EFC, XVII, p. 20, "Good Morning, Ladies All" (1 text, 1 tune)
  3. Roud #8284
  4. BI, Hugi349a