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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Charlie Baum Lyr Req: Haul Away Boys (Cruel was my parents...) (3) Lyr Req: Haul Away Boys (Cruel was my parents...) 23 Jul 17


I'm trying to figure out Sheila Kay Adams's version of the pressgang lament called either "Cruel Were/Was My Parents" or "Haul Away Boys" There's a recording of her singing the song at http://sheilakayadams.yolasite.com/audio.php -- it's the fifth song down. The song is quite similar to Kate Rusby's version (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3z4x1YrsM5w)

I'm particularly unsure about the second lien of the second verse--can anyone help me figure out what Sheila Kay is singing?

Sheila Kay Adams:

Cruel was my parents what took my love from me
Cruel was them men that come and took him off to sea
Cruel was that little blue boat that took him from the sand, lord
And cruel was that great big ship what took him from land

Haul away boys, now, haul away
Haul away boys, lord, haul away

Cruel was that water what lays so flat and still
Cruel was that breeze what blowed 'cause it never raced a rill (?)
Had it blowed a galin' wind that left him on dry land lord
And now he'd be a-walking by me a-holding to my hand

Haul away boys, now, haul away
Haul away boys, lord, haul away

That ring beneath my pillow its the one he give to me
And I'll wear upon my finger now for all the world to see
Cruel was my parents, that captain, and them men
For they never give a nickel if I see my love again

Haul away boys, now, haul away
Haul away boys, lord, haul away


Kate Rusby:

Cruel were my parents, to tear my love from me,
Cruel was the pressgang that took him to the sea,
Cruel was the little boat that rowed him off the strand,
And cruel was the big ship, that took him from the land,
Haul away, boys, haul away,
Haul away, boys, haul away.

Cruel was the water, that ship it sailed upon,
Cruel was the fair wind, for now my loves he's gone,
Had you blown a roaring gale they'd have left him on dry land,
Where he would walk besides me and I would hold his hand,
Haul away boys, haul away,
Haul away boys, haul away.

The ring beneath my pillow, is the ring he gave to me,
I'll wear it on my finger, for all the world to see,
But cruel was the captain, the bo'sun, and the men,
For they didn't give a farthing if I saw my love again,
Haul away, boys, haul away,
Haul away boys, haul away.

Cruel were my parents, to tear my love from me,
Cruel was the pressgang that took him to the sea,
Cruel was the little boat that rowed him off the strand,
And cruel was the big ship, that took him from the land,
Haul away, boys, haul away,
Haul away, boys, haul away.


--submitted by Charlie Baum


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