Henry's Songbook

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When First I Went To Caledonia

  • (Trad)

    When first I went to Caledonia
    I got loading at Number Three
    And I got boarding at Donald Norman's
    He had a daughter could make good tea

    And it was me and my brother Charlie
    The biggest shavers you e'er did see
    We're spearing eels in the month of April
    And starving slaves on Scataree

    I went to Norman's for a pair of brochan
    A pound of soap and a cake of tea
    But Norman said that he would not give them
    Till fish got plenty on Scataree

    So I went over to their big harbour
    Just on purpose for to see the spray
    I spied a maiden from Boulardrie over
    She seemed to me like the Queen of May

    Now if I had pen from Pennsylvania
    If I had paper of purest white
    And if I had ink of the rosy morning
    A true love note unto you I'd write

    But I wish I was on the deepest ocean
    As far from land as once I could be
    A sailing over the deepest water
    Where woman's love would not trouble me

    I'd lay my head to a cask of brandy
    And it's a dandy I do declare
    For when I'm drinking I'm seldom thinking
    How I can gain that young lady fair

    Repeat 1

    (as sung by Tony Cuffe)

Susannes Folksong-Notizen

  • [1988:] A song from Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia, with a rather misleading title. "Caledonia" in this case, refers not to Scotland, but to the Caledonia Coal Mines in Glace Bay, and "Number Three" is one of the pits. Scataree is a small island just off the coast of Cape Breton, now uninhabited except for a lighthouse keeper, and Boulardrie is one of the more fertile farming areas. - From the book "Songs and Stories of Deep Cove, Cape Breton" by Amby Thomas. (Notes Tony Cuffe, 'When First I Went To Caledonia')

  • [1994:] Norma learned [this] from the estimable collection called 'Songs of Deep Cove'. Caledonia is the name of a pit, number three seam. Scataree is an island abandoned by people whose fishing has dried up and is still uninhabited today. Boulardrie is the name of that part of the community where all the rich people live and whence comes the woman with which the character in the song falls blazingly in love at first sight. All he needed. (Martin Carthy, notes 'Waterson:Carthy')

Quelle: Canada

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aktualisiert am 5.06.2002