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Stewart Lyr Req: Appalachian Fiddle Tune - Words ? (9) RE: Lyr Req: Appalachian Fiddle Tune - Words ? 17 Nov 14


John Lover's Gone - Words, Johnny Whelan (1998); tune, trad. "Johnny's Gone to War"
Formerly a fiddle tune called 'John Lover's Gone' from the playing of old-time banjo player, Wade Ward. Johnny Whelan, from Somerset, added wonderful words in a American Civil War setting. Sung by Kieron Means. Recorded by Kate Lissauer on "Ain't No Grave."

John Lover's dead, That's what his mother said
John Lover's dead, That's what his mother said

Chorus: John Lover went to the war, John Lover's gone
Yes John Lover went to the war, Johnny Lover's gone

He died on another man's ground, Killed by a stranger's round
As he walked on another man's land, He was killed by a stranger's hand

He died on another man's ground, And that's where his body was found
He died on another man's ground, Killed by a stranger's round

Chorus

She walked away so slow, She's nothing left to show
She's got no boy to grow
The crops in the ground with the rain and sun
Cried John Lover's gone
The crops in the ground with the rain and sun
Cried John Lover's gone (these last four lines to the tune of the chorus)

Now John Lover's dead, And she never held his head
John Lover's dead, And she never held his head

As he bled on the ground with the rain and sun
Cried John Lover's gone
As he bled on the ground with the rain and sun
Cried John Lover's gone (these last four lines to the tune of the chorus)

John Lover's dead, That's what his mother said
John Lover's dead, That's what his mother said

Chorus

Oh John, oh, Oh John oh.

"Johnny Whelan's been a banjo player for thirty years, initially influenced and inspired by Derroll Adams and Tom Paley. He plays both clawhammer and traditional finger picking styles. He lives in Somerset, England, and currently performs with Buffalo Gals old-time string band. He wrote the words to accompany my recording of the traditional tune John Lover's Gone on my first album, Ain't No Grave . I learned the tune from Dwight Diller, and Wade Ward is commonly cited as an older source for the tune. Johnny thought that the tune sounded like it would have had a song to it, and that the song would be a lament." (Kate Lissauer)

Cheers, S. in Seattle


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