Won’t You Go My Way


Jon says, “A great shanty from a great album of the same name – it’s Peter Bellamy’s live in Norwich album. This is part of a ‘shanty-off’ between Bellamy and Lou Killen. I think Lou wins it by a whisker.”

As expected you’ll find details of the Bellamy and Killen session at Mainly Norfolk. I got somewhat lost in Mudcat with this one, but have picked up that it may well be of Caribbean origin. Many similarly derived shanties didn’t spread with the same wild-fire-vigour through the ranks of white sailors, although one of the posters suggests this was an exception. Again I can’t claim any expertise as far as this goes and am only passing on others’ remarks. I’d be grateful if any of the nautical types (and I know there are one or two of you out there) could perhaps offer any insight. Please fill in below if you know more. Apart from that it seems pretty straigtforward – guy meets pretty girl, she’s unimpressed by his overtures, so he goes to sea – I suppose the alternative was murder!

You can buy the February digital album now from all good download stores.


22 Responses to “Won’t You Go My Way”

  1. Mark says:

    I like this, I can imagine all kinds of backing/harmonies, but it sounds nice just by itself too.

    It’s taken a while, but I’m coming round to this Bellamy character…

  2. John Phipps says:

    Foreign Legion. You go to forget. It’s probably easier going to sea.

  3. Jane Ramsden says:

    The seas are still around, but not the Foreign Legion, John! Though I guess it depends which foreign legion one is referring to.

    I once met a man who had run away to join the presumably French Foreign Legion when he was 17. If it had gone by then, he managed to find another one… He was a hardy type with a hole through his nose – not of the fashionable pierced variety in the nostril, but an unspecified accidental hole through the central nasal bone. It whistled independently on occasion. I had a month of that, swimming up and down the Olympic-size pool of the Devon & Cornwall Constabulary Training Centre, where I acted as pacemaker for him for a mile or so each day. He was much fitter than me, but I was technically the better swimmer, so honour was preserved. Oh, I know, I have lived! Hahahahaha!

    I like this song, which sounds like it could be a round. And I like the idea of a ‘shanty-off’ or some other themed sing-off. Maybe that’s an idea for a concert of the good and the great in folk, or at a festival? And nicely belted out, Jon!

  4. Diana says:

    Short and sweet. Not quite the usual shanty I was expecting but Jon did his usual good job of singing it.

  5. Peter Walsh says:

    Great performance Jon. Those sailor types are quick to propose marriage, n’est-ce pas? This song is slightly out of season! Roll on those Summer evenings. Just seen your question about snow Diana; we got 5 minutes only of it, at Bolton the other day, then it stopped – you weren’t quite as lucky!

  6. Muzza(NW Surrey.UK) says:

    @Jane……….your note above…..
    ‘but an unspecified accidental hole through the central nasal bone. It whistled independently on occasion’
    Can somebody please come round to my house and pick me up off the floor upon which I writhing around, tears in my eyes and howling with laughter………This image will stay with me for ever…..
    Thankyou Jane..you have made an old fella very,very happy.

  7. Diana says:

    Peter you were lucky only 5 mins of snowfall. Still got the frozen remnants here now although the hills still remain with their coating of white.

    Muzza has someone picked you up off the floor yet? I certainly saw the funny side of Tedd’s comments re: nasal bone and whistling.

  8. Diana says:

    The BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards are on next Wednesday @7.30pm. June Tabor and the Unthanks are both up for awards in 4 categories. I am sure that will be of interest to some of you out there, that is if you didn’t already know.

    PS. Where did all the yellow come from?

  9. Roo Ramsden says:

    Playing catch-up today after recent cat-trapping in the cold. That’s another tom done and re-released! Entirely the wrong weather for post-midnight hovering on front stoop with plate of pilchards! Anyhows, they’ve all done a bunk now – no doubt ‘cos it’s too nithering. (‘Nithering’ is a Yorkshire worm for being cold enough to freeze yer bits off! Wish it did the job on the cats!)

    But I digress… a very jaunty shanty there, Jon, and well sung out.

    @ Muzza: Glad I made you happy. It is all true. I never knew/can’t remember how the accidental nasal hole came about… maybe rock climbing… or maybe just fell off his bike…

  10. Muzza(NW Surrey.UK) says:

    Ref Diana 2 above…”where did all the yellow come from?”
    Am I the only saddo that is A)very curious, or B)probably missed something,
    or C)bothers to check back on old comments…….’D’……tell me…what blooming yellow!

  11. Muzza(NW Surrey.UK) says:

    @Jane(Roo)….I have been to the piercing shop for my own nasal aperture and can now play “It’s a long way to Tipperary” on it. It will also prove useful to all the women in my life that lead me by the blooming nose….AFSAD ladies included!

  12. Diana says:

    Muzza I really thought initially I was barking mad – any of the words in comments above, where there was an “ol” in the word ie: hole, roll and Bolton to name but three – were highlighted in yellow. Anyway I scrolled though all comments four times and still yellow. It wasn’t until I typed my question that it disappeared. I know my eyes did not deceive me and I am as sane as you (?) I think. So explain that for me.

  13. Muzza(NW Surrey.UK) says:

    @Diana………..I am so relieved at your explanation.
    Ref your original comment about yellow……we really needed all the information shown on your last comment to help us enjoy the phenomenon….
    but-typical woman…….minimum of info and expect we blokes to be mind readers.
    We couldn’t do without you you though!

  14. Jane Ramsden says:

    @ The pair of ye: I was also perplexed by the yellow ref, thought I must have missed summat, obviously did ‘cos saw none, but I’ll have a pint of whatever Daina’s drinking next time round! It just goes to prove, the world is not always as you perceive it…

    @ Muzza: Sooo pleased about the piercing! You pre-empt my every desire. I promise not to insert a ring to lead you around by. I have no need, obviously, as followers come quite willingly…

    PS Could you change your tune though? ‘It’s A Long Way To Tipperary’ has never been one of my favourites…

  15. Daina says:

    Jane are you suggesting that I was under the influence. Not after A glass of Tropicana. I assure that I was not and I was not seeing things either. Strange though, I know what I saw and I checked several times though the comments and there were several “ol” words which were highlighted in yellow. Still it’s obvious I seemed to be the only one this happened too and I can’t explain it.

  16. Muzza (NW Surrey-UK) says:

    ‘but an unspecified accidental hole through the central nasal bone. It whistled independently on occasion’……still cracks me up!……..scrapped Tipperary and now I can manage ‘who nose where the time/air goes’

  17. Diana says:

    it is funny reading our former comments isn’t it?

    Still not my idea of a shanty but it has a charm of its own.

  18. Linda says:

    Prefer the Bellowhead version of this but it is nice to hear the “basic song”.

  19. Jane Ramsden says:

    I like the way Jon belts this out. I still think the only lack, now I know about the shanty-off, is how it could sound even better if The Fishermen’s Fiends were to sing it in a round. It so lends itself to several people pleading ‘won’t you go my way?’ Far better than telling you to shanty off! Could be a new type of curse! Lol.

    (For those that look at previous days’ comments, my review of Chris Quinn is under yesterday’s ‘Sheffield Apprentice.’ He’s well-worth checking out!)

  20. Diana says:

    Short but sweet, Still not my idea of a shanty.

  21. Old Muzza(NW Surrey.UK says:

    Enjoying…..yet again…………the anecdote ref Janey’s nasally challenged (but musical with it) friend…….
    I wonder where he is now………hang on a minute…I’ll just open a window and have a little listen!

  22. Old Muzza (NW Surrey-UK) says:

    The nose anecdote….still love it!

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