MacEdward Leach and the Songs of Atlantic Canada
Petty Harbour Bait Skiff
Cyril O'Brien NFLD 2 Tape 4 Track 2
Trepassey Audio:

Leach: (Tap on the mike) All right now you can sing.
Female voice (in background): Go ahead
O'Brien (sings):

Good people all both great and small l hope you will attend
To those few simple verses that l have lately penned
They are concerning dangers that us poor seamen stand
While sailing by those stormy shores on the shores of Newfoundland

It happened to be in the summertime in the lovely month of June
When fields were green fair to be seen and valleys were in bloom
When silent fountains do run clear caressed by heaven's rain
And the dewy showers that fall at night do fertilize the plain

We bid adieu to all our friends and those we held most dear
Being bound for Petty Harbour in the springtime of the year
The little birds as we sailed on sung o'er the bills and sails
Whilst Flora from her sportive groves sent for her pleasant gales

Leach: Okay


Sources: Fowke, 1973: 44; Doyle, 1940: 48-49; Doyle, 1955: 46-47; Doyle, 1966:   34; Mills, 1968: 29; Murphy, 1905: 24; Murphy, 1912: 4; Murphy, 1902: 6; Murphy, 1923: 8; Nolan, 1974: 22; Lehr/Best, 87; Blondahl, 99-101; Roud #4410;

From the Memorial University Folklore and Language Archive (MUNFLA) Song Index and Song Annotation Collection: Halpert, Herbert and Nicholas Halpert MUNFLA 66-23; O'Brien, Andrew MUNFLA 68-16; Kearney, Anna Elizabeth MUNFLA 74-45; Goldstein, Kenneth S. and A. O'Hara and Gerald Thomas and H. Rowlings MUNFLA 78-239

History: Newfoundland shipwreck broadside ballad written by John Grace around 1852.

Text: Tells of the wreck of the Petty Harbour Bait Skiff that went down in a storm off the coast of Newfoundland.   This version is incomplete with only four verses.

Tune: A classic arch-shaped ABBA form with the conventional 'b' section in the higher range.   This performance is rhythmically flexible but the metre is fundamentally in 6/8 time. The scale is major.

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