> Folk Music > Songs > Hey Ca' Thro' / The Carles o' Dysart

Hey Ca' Thro' / The Carles o' Dysart

[ Roud 8692 , V45021 ; Robert Burns]

101 Scottish Songs

Hey Ca' Thro' was contributed by Robert Burns to the Scots Musical Museum, but it may be older, as additional verses have been collected in the tradition. The places mentioned are all in Fife.

Ewan MacColl sang Hey Ca' Thro on his 1959 Folkways album Songs of Robert Burns.

Gordon McIntyre and Danny Spooner sang Hey Ca' Thro' in 1978 on their album Revived and Relieved!.

Jean Redpath sang Hey Ca' Thro' in 1987 on her album The Songs of Robert Burns Volumes 6.

Andy M. Stewart sang Hey Ca' Thro' on his 1989 album Songs of Robert Burns.

Janet Russell and Christine Kydd sang Hey Ca' Thro' in 1996 on the Linn anthology The Complete Songs of Robert Burns Volume 2.

Ed Miller sang Hey Ca' Thro' on his 2009 album of songs written or collected by Robert Burns, Lyrics of Gold.

Mick West sang a medley of Wee Willie Gray (Scots Musical Museum, no. 514), The Carles o’ Dysart (Scots Musical Museum, no. 392) and Tail Toddle on his 2009 Greentrax CD Sark o' Snaw. The album's booklet noted:

The song, The Carles o' Dysart celebrates the life of the old—the ‘Carles’ and ‘Kimmers’—and the young—the lads and lassies of Dysart, Buckhaven, Largo and Leven. The words “Ca’ thro” was the cry from a fishing boat approaching a crowded shore. This would have heard most days along the coast at that time.

The tune, Hey Ca’ Thro’, was not known until Burns sent it to the Scots Musical Museum, and is believed to be a Border pipe-tune.

Lyrics

Gordon McIntyre and Danny Spooner sing Hey Ca' Thro'

Up wi the carls o' Dysart,
And the lads o' Buckhaven,
And the kimmers o' Largo,
And the lasses o' Leven.

Chorus (after each verse):
Hey, ca' thro', ca' thro',
For we hae mickle ado;
Hey, ca' thro', ca' thro',
For we hae mickle ado.

We hae tales to tell,
And we hae sangs to sing;
We hae pennies to spend,
And we hae pints to bring.

We'll live a' our days,
And them that comes behin',
Let them do the like;
And spend the gear they win.