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The Waters of Tyne

[ Roud 1364 ; Ballad Index StoR030 ; trad.]

Isla Cameron sang The Waters of Tyne, accompanied by Peggy Seeger on guitar, in 1960 on her and Ewan MacColl's Topic album of traditional love songs, Still I Love Him, and a year later as the title track of on her and Louis Killen's 1961 Prestige album The Waters of Tyne. A.L. Lloyd commented in the former album's liner notes:

The Tyne divides the counties of Durham and Northumberland, and to the lovers facing each other on opposite banks, the river must have seemed very wide. The song seems to be made by a learned hand, though no author is known for it. It was first printed in Bell's Northern Bards, in 1812.

The Ian Campbell Folk Group sang The Waters of Tyne in 1963 on their Transatlantic album This Is the Ian Campbell Folk Group. A re-issue of this album commented in its sleeve notes:

Lucy Broadwood (among others) collected this charming Northumbrian song and published it in her English County Songs [1893]. The song's lyrical qualities have endeared it to countless thousands on the folk scene.

Vin Garbutt sang The Waters of Tyne in 1977 on his Topic album Eston California.

The (Tees-side) Fettlers sang The Waters of Tyne in 1980 on their Traditional Sound album Pride of the North.

Ushna sang Water of Tyne in 1998 on their Fellside album of music and song from Northumbria, Twice Brewed, and Bob Fox sang it in 2000 on his Woodworm CD Dreams Never Leave You. Both also refer in their sleeve notes to John Bell's Rhymes of the Northern Bards of 1812.

Ange Hardy sang Waters of Tyne in 2017 on her CD Bring Back Home.

Lyrics

The Ian Campbell Folk Group sing The Waters of Tyne Ange Hardy sings Waters of Tyne

I cannae get to my love if I would dee,
The waters of Tyne run between him and me.
And here I mun stand with a tear in my e'e,
Baith sighing and sickly my sweetheart to see.

I cannot get to my love if I were to die,
For the waters of Tyne run between her and I.
And here I must stand with a tear in my eye,
Both sighing and sickly my sweetheart to see.

Oh where is the boatman, my bonnie hinny?
Where is the boatman? Bring him to me
To ferry me over the Tyne to my hinny,
And I will remember the boatman and thee.

Oh where is the boatman, my bonnie hinny?
Oh where is the boatman? Oh bring him to me
To ferry me o'er the Tyne to my honey,
And I will remember the boatman and thee.

Oh bring me the boatman, I'll gi'e all my money,
And you for your trouble rewarded shall be.
To ferry me o'er the Tyne to my honey
Or scull him across the rough river to me.

Oh bring me the boatman and I'll give you money,
And you for your trouble rewarded shall be.
To ferry me over the Tyne to my honey
Or scull her across the rough river to me.

(repeat first verse)

Links

See also the Mudcat Café thread Origins: The Waters of Tyne? / Water of Tyne .