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Shiny-O

[ Roud - ; Mudcat 109568 ; trad.]

Stan Hugill sang Shiny-O in 1980 on his Greenwich Village album Stan Hugill Reminisces. He noted:

This halyard song was saved from oblivion thanks to the daughter of a certain Professor Hatfield who took town several rare shanties her father heard being sung by a black crew in 1886 aboard the 548 ton, three-masted barque Ahkera on an eighty-four day passage from Pensacola to Nice. He collected nine work songs, the rarest being Way Down Below, Nancy Rhee and the one we have here—Shiny-O.

Damien Barber and Mike Wilson learned Shiny-O from Stan Hugill's album and sang it on their 2009 CD Under the Influence.

The Teacups sang Shiney-O in 2020 on their third and final album, In Which…. They noted:

As far as we know, this shanty was only collected in one place: in 1886 by James Taft Hatfield on a crossing from Pensacola to Nice, aboard the Ahkera. Its distinctive West Indies melody sets it apart, and there are some alternative lyrics; this version is our favourite.

Lyrics

The Teacups sing Shiney-O

Captain, captain, you are a dandy
    Way-ay-ay-ay, shiny-o
Captain, captain, you love your brandy
    Way-ay-ay-ay, shiny-o

Won't you ferry me over to Dover
Won't you ferry me over to Dover

Queenstown to Dover's a hundred miles or over
Queenstown to Dover's a hundred miles or over

Captain, captain, how deep is the water?
It measures one inch, six feet and a quarter

Captain, captain, I love your daughter
Captain, captain, I love your daughter

Shiny-o is the captain's daughter
For her I'm sailing across this water

Rivers, rivers, rivers are a-rolling
Rivers are a-rolling and I can't get over

Captain, captain, you are a dandy
Captain, captain, you love your brandy