Lyrics

Because it’s all about the words! Here’s the lyrics to some of the songs on the CD and a few yet to be released .
Ann Glanville

Across the River Tamar to Saltash Waterside,
Ann Glanville rowed her cargoes against the flowing tide
With fourteen hungry mouths to feed, a husband sick in bed
Ann took to the water and did the job instead

Chorus
Bend your backs (pull together), bend your backs (pull together)
Bend your backs (pull together), haul against the tide
Bend your backs (pull together), bend your backs (pull together)
Bend your backs (pull together), haul against the tide

At every town regatta her crew were held awe
As strong a team of rowers as ever held an oar
From Dartmouth down to Sennen up the coast and down
No men could catch the women’s gig that came from Saltash Town
Chorus

Now word had crossed the Channel of brave Annie and her crew
Well “Zut alors!” The Frenchmen said and also “Sacre bleue !”
To think these girls could beat the men! It caused a great palaver
So the Frenchmen sent a challenge – come and race us in Le Havre!
Chorus

So Ann and all her ladies they set off across the sea
Victoria was on the throne – it was 1833
They landed in Le Havre to meet the Frenchies face to face
And ate some pickled cockles to get ready for the race

When the starter gave the order the French were first away
‘Cos the girls were used to “Go!” But the bastard said “Allez!”
And many thought the race was lost right there at the start
But Ann called from the bow, “Come on ladies do your part!”
Chorus

And through the choppy waters off Le Havre town
Ann’s ladies set to with a will to row the Frenchmen down
And inch by inch and stroke by stroke by yards and then by feet
They caught the French and Ann cried out, “We’ve got the buggers beat!”
Chorus

So if you go to Saltash and go down to Waterside
You’ll see the gig that bears her name riding on the tide
They put a statue of her, in Fore Street, on a bench
To commemorate Ann Glanville and the day she beat the French

 

Leaving the Sound

Chorus

Sailing past the headland with the island at my back
The wind is on the starboard and the tide is on the slack
And the sun is newly risen, I am free and outward bound
And Plymouth lies behind me, I am leaving the Sound

Verse 1
My name is Tom the Trader and I deal in tin and hides
Twixt the Moor folk and the Bretons I sail upon the tides
The sun will guide me onward by the stars I’ll steer at night
But I’ll thank the Gods above me when the Mewstone comes in sight

Chorus

Verse 2
My name it is Charles Howard and to save the virgin’s reign
I sailed with Drake and Hawkins ‘gainst the galleons of Spain
Off Eddystone we met them and we chased them up to Wight
Then we penned them into Calais and we set them all alight

Verse 3 (Not on the CD version)
My name is William Trevor I’ve been a seaman all my days
I have sailed on the Mayflower across to Americay
When the timbers broke beneath us we were in the hands of God
But we brought her safe to landfall when we sailed into Cape Cod

Verse 4
Francis Chichester’s my name sir and I sailed the world around
And I had a lonely leaving when I left from Plymouth town
But they crowded every hillside as I sailed in past the Break
They saw my sovereign touch my shoulder with the sword that knighted Drake

 

Refugees

As the day is newly dawning, as the sun is on the rise
You can hear the footsteps coming, you can hear the childrens’ cries
On the wrong side of the wire we are hiding in the trees
Heading for the border we are the refugees

When your leaders sent the soldiers was the day the seeds were sowed
Now comes the bitter harvest and the payment that is owed
You bombed us and betrayed us and brought us to our knees
Then drove us from our countries to become the refugees

You send out boats and planes to keep us from your shores
You drove us from our homes but you won’t let us into yours

Through the snow and through the desert it’s hope that drives us on
‘Cos hope is all that’s left us when all we used to have is gone
Our children washed up on your beaches, our families drowning in your seas
Still we journey onwards. We are the refugees

You send out boats and planes to keep us from your shores
You drove us from our homes but you won’t let us into yours

Little piece of tin

It’s just a little piece of tin
In the bottom of a drawer
It’s just something from the war
He doesn’t like to show
All the memories of the friends from days gone by
Ones that won’t come back again, shot from the sky
He still remembers when he used to fly
And won his little piece of tin

He was never one to boast
Never told us what he’d done
Though we knew he’d made the run
The airlift to Berlin
And we knew that in the days that went before
He’d flown on bomber raids all through the war
And then they sent him home but not before
He’d got his little piece of tin.

Never travelled far, never felt the loss
Never found a wife, never gave a toss
Never made much money, never had no gold
Never seemed to worry that he was growing old

In a cottage in the Dales
There a man could be content
But it’s hard to find the rent
With little money coming in
But souvenirs of War won’t ever let you down
He goes upstairs to the drawer and brings the medal down
And goes off to a store that’s in the town
And sells his little piece of tin.

On a winter’s day in a Yorkshire town
One lone bugle played as they lowered him down
As I turned to go a stranger came up to me
Said, I’ve something here that you might like to see…..

Held there in his hand
Was something that I knew
A box of Air Force blue
And I knew what lay within
He said, I bought it at an auction for a song
But I can’t keep it now it just seems wrong
So now I’ve brought it back where it belongs
He faced the grave and dropped it in
Returned the little piece of tin

Where Charlie Once Stood

And the rain tumbles down through the roof of the Palace
Through the broken old windows, the rotting old wood
Down past the pulleys, the ropes and the hangers
And lands on the stage where Charlie once stood
When the overture played on that night in September,
For the Mayor and the Council, the swells and the nobs
Mr Livermore promised a show to remember
And a seat in the Gods could be had for a bob
There were comics and dancers and singers and skaters,
And a flying young lady called Leopoldine
The Manager talked of big stars coming later
The finest of acts were soon to be seen

Now the rain tumbles down through the roof of the Palace,
Through the broken old windows, the rotting old wood
Down past the pulleys, the ropes and the hangers,
And lands on the stage where Charlie once stood

And the stars duly came, they all played the Palace
They adored Lily Langtry each time she appeared
The Dockyardees nailed a man into a coffin
But Houdini escaped and everyone cheered
But the greatest of all was a man with a bowler
A cane and a moustache – the star of his age
The place was sold out and the roof nearly lifted
The night Charlie Chaplin walked out on the stage.

Now the rain tumbles down through the roof of the Palace
Through the broken old windows, the rotting old wood
Down past the pulleys, the ropes and the hangers
And lands on the stage where Charlie once stood

Through war and Depression, through fire and revision
The show must go on as theatre folks say
But the folks stayed at home and watched television
So strippers and wrestling and bingo held sway
Now even the dancers have gone from the Palace
And only the ghosts of past glories remain
And the boards that the Little Tramp trod on that evening
Are swept by the cold wind and washed by the rain

For the rain tumbles down through the roof of the Palace
Through the broken old windows, the rotting old wood
Take care of your memories, take care of your history
Or like Charlie Chaplin they’ll be gone for good

Prince of the Waltzer

A winter’s night in Plymouth town, the twilight came as the sun went down
But the lights on the Hoe were showing the way to the fair
The music was playing from every side, from the Dodgems, the Waltzer, the Ghost Train ride
And the smell of the onions and diesel was thick in the air
And just past the Hoopla and popcorn stand, by the fortune teller’s caravan
A young girl stood and gazed out over the scene
And she was pretty and she was fair and all the young men stopped and stared
But in all the fair she only had eyes for one man

Chorus
He was the Prince of the Waltzer, the boy with the laughing eyes
And she was the girl from the candyfloss stall, she was young and shy
He used to swing all the cars, and the young girls would cling to the bars
And they sighed as the Prince of the Waltzer went waltzing on by
And no-one knew and no-one cared. just how he came to join the fair
A rascal, a dodger, just one of the lads on the crew
If the boss had suspected right from the start, that his only daughter was losing her heart
Their love would be smothered – instead it just blossomed and grew
And after the people had all gone home and the lights were all out and they were alone
They would meet at the Waltzer and cuddle in one of the cars
Then he’d put on the music but keep it low and like Juliet and Romeo
These starcrossed lovers would waltz by the light of the stars

Chorus

Forty years have flown away but the fair was back the other day
And up on the Hoe the lights were shining again
The music was playing just as loud , I pushed my way among the crowd
The lights were bright but the sky was threatening rain
And there by the Hoopla and popcorn stand, by the fortune tellers caravan
A woman stood and much to my surprise
Her gaze was fixed on the Waltzer ride, at the payment booth and there inside
Was a grey haired man with laughter in his eyes
And late at night, I just know, like Juliet and Romeo
They waltz together just as they did then
Across the ride, between the cars, the two of them beneath the stars
Holding tight and thinking back to when…

Chorus

All songs © Andy Harding