Song: Monk McClamont's “Farewell to Articlave”

from by Artisan Row

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about

Conor Doherty (vocal, acoustic guitar), Karen Ryan (mandola), Pete Quinn (piano, backing vocal), Elma McElligott (flute, backing vocal).
This song is another one from Conor’s debut album which we enjoyed rearranging for the band. As it namechecks both Derry and Liverpool – Conor and Pete’s respective home towns – the song pretty much suggested itself. Conor found it in Sam Henry’s classic collection, Songs of the People. As he prepares to sail for America on The Provincial, the narrator finds the ship bestilled and has time to see, and mourn, the land he’s leaving behind. We’re still looking for a song that references Listowel and London, Elma and Karen’s home towns, so if you know of one please get in touch!

lyrics

Monk McClamont's Farewell To Articlave

'Twas in the year of forty and the year of forty too
The time I do remember when I bid my friends adieu
Our noble ship Provincial well fitted for the sea
And commanded by our captain bold bound for America

'Twas on the fourth of April we sailed from Derry Quay
Our vessel being well manned bound for America
Contrary to our wishes our sails did scarcely fill
And by our captain's orders we anchored at Moville

But early the next morning when I on deck did stand
And looking all around me I say my native land
Twould mind you of a desert your eyes with tears would fill
When I looked across sweet Articlave and the castle of Downhill

When I looked by the tower I saw my native strand
Like Moses on Mount Nebo when he viewed the promised land
My mind being bound for rambling as I told you before
I turned my back upon the scene I might behold no more

Farewell unto sweet Articlave where first my breath I drew
Farewell my loyal comrades a long farewell to you
For now I'm on the ocean and all our sails are full
And so swiftly as she does pass by the isle of Innistrahull

The names of our good officers I mean for to relate
Our captain's name was William and Primshaw was our mate
He was as good a captain as e'er a ship did rule
And the other was a seaman brave that came from Liverpool

The second mate's Cabena his station does well fill
Like his father with Sir Hervey in the castle of Downhill
When he was young and tender he bound himself to sea
And he gained that promotion before that he was free

And as for our commander he is so good a man
I am scarce fit to praise him when I do all I can
But that God may be his pilot wherever he may be
And keep him on the chosen path from danger set him free

I beg to be excused I have no more to say
The pilot he has come on board on the eighteenth day of May
One hundred miles to the nearest port he told our captain so
Our orders were: "Prepare yourselves, ye have several roads to go.

credits

from Wild Winds, released April 10, 2017

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Artisan Row London, UK

Celebrating the timeless melodic beauty of traditional Irish music and more, Artisan Row brings together four well-known figures from London's traditional Irish music scene. First performing together in this combination at the 2012 Ennis Trad Festival, the quartet uses its rich textural palette to set the material in striking and ear-catching ways while always respecting the primacy of the melody. ... more

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