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Gordon Bok - NORTH WIND'S CLEARING - CD-1005 :

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CD1005 -

Gordon Bok - NORTH WIND'S CLEARING - CD-1005

McKeon's Coming
Old Fat Boat

Bay of Fundy
Cape Ann
Clear Away in the Morning
Frankie on the Sheepscott
Gulls in the Morning
I's the B'y
Liverpool Handy
Mister Eneos
Mister I Don't Mind
Mrs. MacDonald's Lament
McKeon's Coming
Old Fat Boat
Peter Kagan and the Wind
Saben the Woodfitter
Threeboot Philbrick's Lament
Western Boat





A compilation of Gordon's finest songs of the Maine Coast and the sea, and of those who earn their living upon it. This compact disc has been drawn from several of Gordon's earlier recordings, digitally remastered and presented complete with a new booklet containing the texts of all of the songs and information concerning them. An essential item for Bok fans and for all of those who are interested in contemporary maritime music.

OLD FAT BOAT [MATTAPOISETT HARBOR INVENTORY]
(Gordon Bok, BMI)

I always felt a little cheated by life that I had never been in a situation where I felt sorry enough for myself that I had to write what Pete Seeger calls a "navel" or "belly-button" song. (As Kendall Morse would say: "what did all those other folksingers have that I couldn't get pounded into shape?")

Well, it finally struck. A few years ago I was bringing an old wooden boat from Connecticut to Maine. Ran out of crew about the time the weather started going crook. Threw my back out trying to get an anchor out of the mud. Crippled around Newport for three days in the cold June rain, looking for any unfeathered biped who would help me get the old slab a little farther along the coast. No luck. Got blisters on my butt rowing in wet dungarees. Got wet, too.

Got a raving Northwest wind one day and decided to have a go without any help. (Had to use the jib -sheet winch to get the anchor off the bottom... always wondered what those noisy round things were for... ) Slammed out of there with half a bag of sail on and headed her East.

Ended up off Mattapoisett harbor with the weather getting gloomy again; decided to get off my feet for the night, so I worked her in there and anchored, got the sails off her. Brownell workboat came out and told me, since it was going to blow Northeast, why didn't I take their mooring... over there. Got the anchor up and went over to pick up their mooring. Realized that, with the wind Northeast, I was a mile downwind of the town wharf... again.

Piled into that ridiculous plastic dog- dish they call a rowboat and pulled ashore, in the rain. Called home, went back down to the "rowboat" and, as I was shipping the oars, got a humongous great splinter in the crotch of my hand. Blew downwind back out to the ketch.

Went below started the leaky stove to get the damp out, got out the hydrogen peroxide, the knife and the oilstone. Looked at the splinter, got out the rum. Properly anesthetized, I was working on the splinter and it occurred to me to wonder what was for supper. Realized it was Saturday night, raining, town was a mile's row upwind and a mile's walk after that...

A couple of days later, I found most of this song, along with a list of groceries (existent and non-existent) in the logbook. Even sailors have a right to sing the blues.

P.S. My thanks to Ken Hicks, that outrageous gentle-man from Virginia, who allowed me to rip off a bit of his fine song "Half the Fun of Going is Getting There."

So, here I am, man, all alone again,
Anchored away the hell and gone again.
Another mile from another town,
The wind Northeast n'the rain coming down.
Home is the sailor, home from the sea;
He's a home for the mildew, a friend to the flea.
I don't care, man, I'm happy.

I got an old fat boat, she's slow but handsome,
Hard in the chine and soft in the transom.
I love her well; she must love me,
But I think it's only for my money.

And I don't mind staying and I don't mind going,
But I some damned tired of rowing.

No more tobacco, no more cheese;
I'm sprung in the back and lame in the knees.
It's a damned good thing I'm easy to please;
There ain't nothing in town on a Sunday
I don't care, man, I'm happy.
I got an old fat boat... etc.

You know, I got milk and I got ice;
I got home- made bread, a little old, but nice.
Everybody puts their cooking hat on
When you tell 'em you're leaving in the morning,
And I don't mind staying... etc.

Oh, hey, you know I got coffee, I got tea,
I got the beans and the beans got me.
I got tuna fish, I got rum,
I got a two -pound splinter in my thumb.
So, I'll take my toddy and my vitamin C
And the radio for my company.
Oh, me. I got the hydrogen peroxide blues.
I don't care, man, I'm happy.
I got an old fat boat... etc.

Well, mercy, mercy, I do declare,
If half the fun of going is getting there,
Mercy, Percy, you better start rowing,
'Cause the other half of getting there is going.

    
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Category : Gordon Bok
Category : Just Folk-Legacy
Category : Songs of the Sea
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