Wayfaring Stranger

DESCRIPTION: The singer confesses, "I'm just a poor, wayfaring stranger / A-travelling through this world of woe." The singer plans to cross the Jordan (into heaven), there to meet with family and loved ones and live forever free from trouble and burden
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1816 (Kentucky Harmony, as "Judgement")
KEYWORDS: religious death
FOUND IN: US(Ap,MA,SE,So)
REFERENCES (21 citations):
FSCatskills 77, "Poor and Foreign Stranger" (1 text, 1 tune)
Warner 93, "A Poor Wayfaring Pilgrim" (1 text, 1 tune)
Fuson, p. 208, "I'm Just A-Going Over Jordon" (1 text, clearly this though it lacks the "Wayfaring Stranger" lines)
AbrahamsRiddle, pp. 94-95, "The Wayfaring Stranger" (1 text, 1 tune)
BrownSchinhanV 771, "Wayfaring Stranger" (1 short text, 1 tune)
Joyner, p. 81, "Wayfaring Stranger" (1 text, 1 tune)
Rosenbaum, pp. 68-69, "I Am a Poor Wayfaring Pilgrim" (1 text, 1 tune)
Moore-Southwest 177, "Poor Wayfaring Stranger" (1 text, 1 tune)
Barton, p. 5, "Goin Over on de Uddah Side of Jordan" (1 fragment, 1 tune)
Dett, p. 191, "Pilgrim's Song" (1 text, 1 tune; pp. 126-127 in the 1901 edition)
Lomax-FSUSA 97, "Wayfaring Stranger" (1 text, 1 tune)
Lomax-Singing, p. 37, "Over Jordan (Wayfaring Stranger)" (1 text, 1 tune)
Botkin-AmFolklr, pp. 880-881, "Wayfaring Stranger" (1 text, 1 tune, plus verses from several parodies)
Arnett, p. 32, "Wayfaring Stranger" (1 text, 1 tune)
Chase, pp. 162-165, "Wayfaring Stranger" (1 text, 3 tunes)
Abrahams/Foss, pp. 124-125, "Wayfaring Stranger" (1 text, 1 tune)
PSeeger-AFB, p. 15, "Wayfaring Stranger" (1 text, 1 tune)
Fireside, p. 34, "I Am a Poor Wayfaring Stranger" (1 text, 1 tune)
Silber-FSWB, p. 352, "Wayfaring Stranger" (1 text)
ADDITIONAL: Howard P. Odum and Guy B. Johnson, The Negro and His Songs (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1925), pp.137-138, "The Pilgrim's Song" (1 text)
Sing Out_ magazine, Volume 22, #5 (1973), p, 21, "Wayfaring Stranger" (1 text, 1 tune, the Horton Barker version)

ST FSC077 (Partial)
Roud #3339
RECORDINGS:
Clarence Ashley, "Wayfaring Pilgrim" (on WatsonAshley01)
Horton Barker, "Wayfaring Stranger" (on Barker01)
Linzy Hicks, "A Poor Wayfaring Pilgrim" (on USWarnerColl01)
Roscoe Holcomb, "Wayfaring Stranger" (on MMOK, MMOKCD)
Almeda Riddle, "Poor Wayfaring Stranger" (on LomaxCD1701, LomaxCD1704)
Pete Seeger, "The Wayfaring Stranger" (on PeteSeeger07, PeteSeeger07b)
Vaughn's Texas Quartet, "The Wayfaring Pilgrim" (Victor V-40231, 1930)

CROSS-REFERENCES:
cf. "Dear Companion (The Broken Heart; Go and Leave Me If You Wish To, Fond Affection)" (tune)
ALTERNATE TITLES:
Judgement
Wayfaring Pilgrim
NOTES: For some reason, this song has powerfully captured the attention of a segment of the folk song revival; there are a remarkable number of albums issued with 14 of the singer's own songs and "Wayfaring Stranger." It's a good song, but why this one of all the traditional songs out there? - PJS
Perhaps the tune hss some special fascination? Schinhan says more about its oddities than almost any other piece in the Brown collection. - RBW
Last updated in version 4.1
File: FSC077

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