> Nic Jones > Songs > Bonny George Campbell
> June Tabor > Songs > Bonny James Campbell

Bonnie George Campbell / Bonnie James Campbell

[ Roud 338 ; Child 210 ; Ballad Index C210 ; trad.]

Rory and Alex McEwen sang the Border ballad Bonnie George Campbell in a recording made by Peter Kennedy on the 1955 HMV album of songs and ballads of England and Scotland, Folk Song Today.

Frank Proffitt sang Bonnie James Campbell on his 1962 Folk-Legacy album Traditional Songs and Ballads of Appalachia and on the 2000 anthology Ballads and Songs of Tradition from the Folk-Legacy Archives.

Nic Jones sang Bonny George Campbell in a BBC Radio 1 John Peel session recorded on October 14, 1975 and broadcast November 12, 1975. I don't know if this recording or another of unknown origin was included on his 2001 anthology Unearthed.

Martin Simpson sang George Campbell in 1976 on his Trailer album Golden Vanity.

Bobby Eaglesham sang Bonnie George Campbell in 1982 on his Fellside album Weather the Storm.

Steve Turner sang Bonnie George Campbell in 1986 on the Fellside anthology Flash Company and in 2008 on his own CD The Whirligig of Time.

John Wright sang Bonnie George Campbell in 1993 on his Fellside CD Ride the Rolling Sky.

Brian Peters and Gordon Tyrrall sang Bonnie George Campbell in 1996 on their Harbourtown CD Clear the Road.

Gibb Todd sang George Campbell in 1999 on his CD Connected.

Duncan Williamson of Ladybank, Fife, sang Bonnie James Campbell in 2001 to Mike Yates. This recording was included in the latter's 2006 EFDSS book of songs of English and Scottish travellers and gypsies, Traveller's Joy.

June Tabor sang Bonnie James Campbell in 2003 on her album of Border ballads, An Echo of Hooves. This track was also included in 2005 on her Topic anthology Always.

Lyrics

Nic Jones sings Bonny George Campbell

High upon Highlands and low upon Tay,
Bonny George Campbell he rode out on a day.
Saddled, bridled, so gallant rode he,
Home came his good horse but never came he.

Down came his mother dear with her heart filled with care,
Down came his bonny bride and she's curling her hair.
My meadow lies green and the corn is unshorn,
Bonny George Campbell he'll never return.

Saddled and bridled and booted rode he,
With a plume in his helmet and a sword by his knee.
Home came the saddle, all bloody to see,
Home came his good horse but never came he.

Steve Turner sings Bonnie George Campbell

High upon Highlands and low upon Tay,
Bonnie George Campbell rode out on a day.
Saddled and bridled and booted rode he,
Home came his good horse but never came he.

Saddled and bridled and booted rode he,
With a plume in his helmet and a sword by his knee.
Home came the saddle, all bloody to see,
Home came his good horse but never came he.

Down came his mother: She's crying full sore.
Out came his bonnie wife: She's tearing of her hair.
My meadows lie green and my corn is unshorn,
My barns they are empty And my baby's unborn.

(repeat first verse)

Acknowledgements

Thanks to Garry Gillard for transcribing Steve Turner's verses.