> Martin Carthy > Songs > His Name Is Andrew

His Name Is Andrew

[David Ackles]

David Ackles sang his own, bleak song in 1968 on his eponymous album David Ackles (reissued in 1971 as The Road to Cairo). Martin Carthy sang it with somewhat different words in 1971 on his album Landfall. This recording was also included as a bonus track of the CD reissue of David Ackles's fourth and last album, Five & Dime. Martin Carthy commented in his album's sleeve notes:

The three modern songs here, His Name Is Andrew, The January Man, and Dust to Dust, were written by David Ackles, Dave Goulder and John Kirkpatrick. David Ackles is an American who writes songs sounding very like the French chansonniers. Dave Goulder runs a sort of doss-house-cum-mountain rescue service up in Ross-Shire, when he's not writing songs and poetry or singing in clubs. John Kirkpatrick used to (and, I think, still does) play piano accordion for the Hammersmith Morris Men, as well as doing solo folk club gigs singing.

Jon Boden sang His Name Is Andrew as the November 2, 2010 entry of his project A Folk Song a Day.

Lyrics

Davis Ackles sings His Name Is Andrew Martin Carthy sings His Name Is Andrew

His name is Andrew
He works in a canning factory
He doesn't have a friend
He chooses to wait alone for his life to end

His name is Andrew
He works at the canning factory
He doesn't have a friend
He chooses to wait alone for his life to end

When Andrew was just a little boy
He knew all the words to all the hymns of joy
And he sang them on Sunday
And he sang them on Monday
And in April and in May
And he heard them say
God is love, God is love
And he believed them

When Andrew was just a little boy
He learned all the words to all the hymns of joy
And he sang them on Sunday
And he sang them on Monday
And through April and through May
And he caught them say
God is love, God is love
And he believed them

This child was Andrew
He lived in a world of innocence
On him the lion grinned
He sang in the arms of God as he strummed

This child was Andrew
He lived in a world of no sense
On him the lion grinned
He sang in the arms of God as he strung along

When Andrew was tall and twenty-one
He wandered from God and wondered what he'd done
For he still sang on Sunday
Though he muddled through Monday
With a silence in his head
Till in jest it said
God redeems, God redeems
And he believed it

When Andrew was tall and twenty-one
He wandered far from God and wondered what he'd done
For he still sang on Sunday
Though he muddled through Monday
With a silence in his head
Till in jest it said
God redeems, God redeems
And he believed it

This man was Andrew
Hearing a voice he thought was stilled
Back to the arms of grace
He stumbled through darkened woods to a lighted place

This man was Andrew
On hearing a voice he thought was stilled
Returned to the arms of grace
He stumbled from the arms of night into a lighted place

When Andrew returned to love and light
He lifted his voice and sang away the night
And the preacher from Sunday
Heard him singing on Monday
And he stopped him with a word
From the dark he heard
God is dead, God is dead
And he believed him

When Andrew returned into the light
He lifted his voice and sang away the night
And the preacher from Sunday
Heard him singing on Monday
And he stopped him with a word
From the dark he heard
God is dead, God is dead
And he believed it

My name is Andrew
I work in a canning factory
I do not have a friend
I choose to wait alone for this life to end

My name is Andrew
I work at the canning factory
I do not have a friend
I choose to wait alone for this life to end

Acknowledgements

Transcribed by Reinhard Zierke. Thanks to Jean-Pierre Cheval for some essential corrections.