Songs of the Sea: Some Beach

I’m still here in Huntsville (Alabama- NOT the prison in Texas!). The TBEX is over now, but I’m not flying home til tonight. Checkout time is noon and the art museum across the street doesn’t open til then, so I figured I’d try to catch up a little and post. 🙂

This song by Blake fits my mood pretty good this morning. There were lots of representatives from the Gulf Coast states (and their beautiful beaches) at the TBEX, Blake is from Oklahoma and they were there too.

The TBEX has been great. I met tons of really interesting people. Everyone has a story and so many are bloggers.

The breakout sessions were full of great information. I hated to miss any of them, I appreciate that some of the presenters gave out links to their slide shows so I’m hoping I can go back later to see the ones I missed and review some things I didn’t really catch.

I’ve been blogging for a couple of years now, but I still don’t really know what I’m doing here. 😉

Our destination hosts here were fantastic. The Von Braun Center, Huntsville, North Alabama, Alabama, and the US Space & Rocket Center really went all out to show us a great time here in their city. We spent the days learning how to blog better and networking with destinations. Nights were spent at special events held for us around town.

I arrived on Thursday (10 mins late for my scheduled tour to the Redstone Arsenal to taste the craft beers). I spent the afternoon at the hotel catching up on emails while chatting with other bloggers waiting for our rooms to be ready. The hotel made the waiting much easier to bear by offering free massages and blackberry mojitos. 🙂

Check out my instagram pic, I’ve got to run and check out, will have to finish this later…

Songs of the Sea: I Hate Boats

They say the 2 best days in the life of any boat owner are the day he buys it and the day he sells it. Here’s a song for those who are getting to that 2nd best day!

Songs of the Sea: So Far From the Clyde

I have to say thanks to the Old Salt Blog for sending me news of this song in my email this morning. 🙂

I’ve never heard of it before. I’m not really familiar with Mark Knopfler, even tho I know a few songs by Dire Straits. After listening to this song, I’ll be sure to track down more of his stuff.

As a seafarer, I know exactly what he’s singing about. It’s a sad song about riding his ship to the breakers. So many great ships were built in Scotland, on the Clyde. I’ve even been on one- the famous tea clipper, Cutty Sark. She’s kept near London now, as a museum.

Most ships are brought round to the breakers in the Indian Ocean. They’re driven ashore in Pakistan or India. It’s just so much easier and cheaper to get rid of them there. That’s a story in itself. National Geographic did a photo essay on it recently.

I’ve never done it yet myself. I would like to once, before I have to give up sailing. Closest I came was to deliver the tanker “Coastal New York” to a shipyard in China for scrapping.

Listen to the lyrics…

“So Far From The Clyde”

They had a last supper the day of the beaching
She’s a dead ship sailing skeleton crew
The galley is empty, the stove pots are cooling
What’s left of the stew
The time is approaching, the captain moves over
The hangman steps in to do what he’s paid for
With the wind down the tide she goes proud ahead steaming
And he drives her hard into the shore

So far from the Clyde
Together we ride, we did ride

A drift to a wave from her bows to her rudder
Bravely she rises to meet with the land
Under their feet you can feel the Kings shudder
The shallow sea washes their hands
Later the captain shakes hands with the hangman
Climbs slowly down to the oily wet ground
Goes back to the car that has come here to take him
Through the graveyard back to the town

So far from the Clyde
Together we ride, we did ride

They pull out her cables and hack off her hatches
Too poor to be wasteful with pity or time
They swarm on her carcass with torches and axes
Like a whale on a bloody shoreline
Stripped of her pillars her stays and her stanchions
When it’s only her bones on the wet poison land
Steel robbers will drag her with winches and engines
Till it’s only a stain on the sea

So far from the Clyde
Together we ride, we did ride
So far from the Clyde
Together we ride, we did ride

Songs of the Sea: Pirate Chantey

In honor of Pirates Weekend at the Texas Renaissance Fair, I’m re-posting this little ditty from last year.

Here’s another little sea chantey to add to your musical collection. It’s done by Key & Peele, 2 funny guys who used to be on MADtv (which I loved). I really used to love MAD magazine when I was a kid, but the ones they’re coming out with now are nowhere near as funny as they used to be (and no, it’s not just because I’m getting older!).

This sketch somehow manages to be both a little risque’ and PC at the same time. 😉

Pirate Chantey– Key & Peele

“Thar once was a lass so fine,
She was drunk on Barleywine,
I’d been (out) to sea for a month or three,
I knew I could make her mine.
But the lass was past consent,
So it was off with her we went,
And we threw her in bed and we rested her head,
And we left cuz that’s what Gentlemen do…

A woman has a right to a drink or two,
Without worryin’ about what you will do!
We say Yo-HO but we don’t say ‘ho,’ 
Cuz ‘ho’ is disrespectful, yo.

Thar once was a girl from Leeds,
Who I heard was good on her knees,
So I docked my ship for an overnight trip,
To take care of all of my needs.
She was fine as the tales did tell,
And my mast began to swell,
So I laid her down and I raised her gown,
And performed cunnilingus for an hour or so.

Always take care of yer lady fair,
Cuz they deserve as much attention down there!
We say Yo-HO but we don’t say ‘ho,’
Cuz ‘ho’ is disrespectful, yo.

I once had a woman so fair,
Whose whom contained my heir,
With a son by my side, the seas we’d ride,
The child she would bear.
But my woman she was no fool,
She was working her way through school,
So I did support when she chose to abort,
Because it’s her body and therefor her choice.

No we don’t say ‘booty’ ‘less we talkin’ ’bout gold,
and we don’t look at chests ‘less they’s treasure-holds!
With a hat and a feather and a cutlass on our hip,
We don’t say ‘she’ when we’re talking ’bout a ship!
We don’t say ‘bitch’ and we don’t say ‘whore,’
Cuz that language leads to things like body dysmorphia.

Thar was a lady with a golden eye,
And the doctor said she would die,
So she emptied her purse to lift the curse,
And prayed to stay alive.
She awoke the very next day,
And in her grave she lay,
But the scariest part of the story from the start,
Is I bet you assumed the doctor was a man.

Women are doctors too,
And for a fraction of the doubloons!
We say Yo-HO but we don’t say ‘ho,’
Cuz ‘ho’ is disrespectful, yo.

Thar was a slut with tits to here, and an ass that- (gunshot. he is dead and that is good.)

Cuz it’s Yo-HO but we don’t say ‘ho,’
Cuz ‘ho’ is disrespectful, yo.”

Songs of the Sea: When the Ship Comes In

In honor of awarding the Nobel Prize in Literature to Bob Dylan, here’s a video. Bob Dylan plays along with Keith Richards and Ron Wood. It was taped during the big Live Aid concert back in 1985 (did anything really come out of that? did anything really change?).

I’ve heard better versions of this song (it’s been covered by quite a few bands). Hard to understand the words when Bob sang it on that video, so here are the lyrics…

“When The Ship Comes In”

Oh the time will come up
When the winds will stop
And the breeze will cease to be breathin’
Like the stillness in the wind
‘Fore the hurricane begins
The hours when the ship comes in.

And the seas will split
And the ship will hit
And the sands on the shoreline will be shaking
Then the tide will sound
And the wind will pound
And the morning will be breaking.

Oh the fishes will laugh
As they swim out of the path
And the seagulls they’ll be smiling
And the rocks on the sand
Will proudly stand
The hour that the ship comes in.

And the words that are used
For to get the ship confused
Will not be understood as they’re spoken
For the chains of the sea
Will have busted in the night
And will be buried at the bottom of the ocean.

A song will lift
As the mainsail shifts
And the boat drifts on to the shoreline
And the sun will respect
Every face on the deck
The hour that the ship comes in.

Then the sands will roll
Out a carpet of gold
For your weary toes to be a-touchin’
And the ship’s wise men
Will remind you once again
That the whole wide world is watchin’.

Oh the foes will rise
With the sleep in their eyes
And they’ll jerk from their beds and think they’re dreamin’
But they’ll pinch themselves and squeal
And know that it’s for real
The hour that the ship comes in.

Then they’ll raise their hands
Sayin’ we’ll meet all your demands
But we’ll shout from the bow your days are numbered
And like Pharaoh’s tribe
They’ll be drownded in the tide
And like Goliath, they’ll be conquered.

Songs of the Sea: Guantanamera

Wow! Another week’s gone by and it’s time for another Song of the Sea. This week, I found this old classic Guantanamera. I remember singing it along with my friends in school as we traveled around the world on the Ariadne.

It’s really a traditional song, from Cuba, but it’s still a good one to listen to and to sing along with.

I’m not actually sure why it’s considered a sailing song now that I understand the lyrics. But it’s one I’ve heard in a lot of sailors bars around the world, and it does make me think of those good old days, so I’ll include it here.

Guantanamera

 [Estribillo:]
Guantanamera, guajira guantanamera
Guantanamera, guajira, guantanamera
 
Yo soy un hombre sincero, de donde crece la palma
Yo soy un hombre sincero, de donde crece la palma
Y antes de morir yo quiero cantar mis versos del alma
 
[Estribillo]
 
Cultivo una rosa blanca, en julio como en enero
Cultivo una rosa blanca, en julio como en enero
Para el amigo sincero, que me da su mano franca
 
[Estribillo] (2x)
 
Mi verso es de un verde claro, y de un carmín encendido
Mi verso es de un verde claro, y de un carmín encendido
Mi verso es un ciervo herido, que busca en el monte amparo
 
[Estribillo] (2x)
And since I still don’t know Spanish well enough, here’s the English translation…

Guantanamera

Chorus))
 
Guantanamera, guajira* (Peasant) guantanamera
Guantanamera, guajira, guantanamera
 
I’m a sincere man , I’m from where growing palm (leaf), I’m a sincere man , I’m from where growing palm leaf
and before I die I want to sing my verses of my soul
 
Chorus
 
I cultivate a white rose, in july as well as January
I cultivate a white rose in july as well as january,
to my sincere friend, who give me sincerity
(2 x)
 
My verse is like a light green colour and also carmine
My verse is like a light green colour and also carmine
my verse is an injured serf which looks for refuge/protection
 
Chorus 2x))
It goes much better in Spanish (IMHO)!
I’ve known this song for a long time, but this is the first time I’ve actually seen any explanation of the story…

the lyrics to the song relate to a woman from Guantánamo, with whom he had a romantic relationship, and who eventually left him. The alleged real story behind these lyrics is that she did not have a romantic interest in him, but merely a platonic one. If the details are to be believed, she had brought him a steak sandwich one day as a present to the radio station where he worked. He stared at some other woman (and attempted to flirt with her) while eating the sandwich, and his friend yanked it out of his hands in disgust, cursed him and left. He never saw her again. These words are rarely sung today

Another history behind the chorus and its lyrics (“Guantanamera … / Guajira Guantanamera …”) is similar: he was at a street corner with a group of friends and made a courteous pass (a polite pick-up line, like “your mother made you good” or “you came from a star”, piropo in Spanish) to a woman (who also happened to be from Guantánamo) who walked by the group. She answered back rather harshly, offended by the pass. Stunned, he could not take his mind off her reaction while his friends made fun of him; later that day, sitting at a piano with his friends near him, he wrote the song’s main refrain.

Songs of the Sea: Swim

Here’s another in my Songs of the Sea series. This one’s by Madonna. I really love the video someone made to go with it. I love watching the waves roll by. It’s nice that it has the Spanish subtitles too, so all the people who speak Spanish can understand it better. Enjoy. 🙂

“Swim”

Put your head on my shoulder baby
Things can’t get any worse
Night is getting colder
Sometimes life feels like it’s a curse

[Bridge:]

I can’t carry these sins on my back
Don’t wanna carry any more
I’m gonna carry this train off the track
I’m gonna swim to the ocean floor

[Chorus:]

Mmmmm
Crash to the other shore
Mmmmm
Swim to the ocean floor

Children killing children
While the students rape their teachers
Comets fly across the sky
While the churches burn their preachers

[Bridge2:]

We can’t carry these sins on our back
Don’t wanna carry any more
We’re gonna carry this train off the track
We’re gonna swim to the ocean floor

[chorus]

Let the water wash over you
Wash it all over you
Swim to the ocean floor

So that we can begin again
Wash away all our sins
Crash to the other shore

Mmmmmm

[bridge]
[chorus]
[bridge2]

Crash to the other shore
Swim to the ocean floor
Mmmmmm