River Lea, The
DESCRIPTION: Capstan shanty. One fine day in May sailor finds himself broke and ships aboard the (River Lea). He spends the rest of the song (and presumably rest of the voyage) singing of all things he won't do any more once this voyage is over.
AUTHOR: Sam Peck ?
EARLIEST DATE: 1938 (Colcord)
KEYWORDS: shanty sailor ship
FOUND IN: US Britain
REFERENCES (2 citations):
Colcord, pp, 181-182, "The River Lea" (1 text, 1 tune)
Hugill, pp. 586-589, "The River Lea," "The Anglesey" (2 texts, 2 tunes -- the first being quoted from Colcord) [AbEd, pp. 406-409]
ST Hugi589 (Partial)
cf. "Dixie Brown" [Laws D7] (similar story)
NOTES: Colcord says this was composed by a shantyman named Sam Peck. It obviously bears some relation to "Dixie Brown," though it has no mention of shanghaiing or robbery. Hugill also mentions (though does not corroborate) Colcord's claim, and states that it was quickly pulled into the popular shanty repertoire for use at the capstan. - SL
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