Words That Change

Sea shanties

In Uncategorized on 9 September, 2011 at 15:24

I will be telling the Sailor and the Flower at the Mezrab’s storytelling tonight. It really is a gem of an evening and will be fascinating to see how it turns out live.

I am a little nervous, blog friends. The plan is to use a sea shanty from the gentlemen videoed above. The story will roar into life with some carefully prepared voices erupting in a sea shanty mid-way through the story to stir up the crowd a bit. If you’re reading this and thinking of coming, sorry for the spoiler, I am just quite excited.

The Fisherman’s Friends are something of a sensation. Beginning in their local pub in Port Isaac, Cornwall, they sang songs that entertained them and soon gathered a small local following. Port Isaac is a picturesque town delighted on by tourists each summer but deserted the rest of the year, except for some hardy locals who bear it out and learn to sing.

Their concerts in the summer – sang in Port Isaac with a back drop of the sea – now attract hundreds and raise money for charity. They have a gold selling album, a movie rumoured to be produced and have toured the whole UK, and I believe the States.

I think the reason their music ignites people so much – apart from their back story and quality of voice,ringing out in 6 part harmonies – is it reminds the English of their history, beyond kings and battles, lived in real hearts and voices. The Celts have got the edge over the English in understanding and absorbing what their people are about.  To hear Fisherman’s Friend is to remember several hundred years of memory gutterwhauling by the sea.

We do so cherish an authentic memory.

  1. […] story went brilliantly well. You can’t ask for more than a hundred or so listening pairs of ears […]

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