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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Richard Mellish Origins: Daar Kom Die Alabama (14) Origins: Daar Kom Die Alabama 09 Jun 20


Daar Kom Die Alabama was sung in last night's Mudcat singaround. It has been mentioned in this thread but I am starting a new thread because the only connection between the two songs is that they may be about the same ship.

I commented in the chat last night that I had read somewhere that the Africaans song related to a different Alabama, not the Confederate ship. Some time back I had come across an account referring to a trading vessel named Alabama or Alibama making regular visits to somewhere up the coast, but I now can't find that account. Most of the references that I can find on the Web presume that the song did arise from the Confederate ship's visit(s) to Cape Town.

However the abovementioned thread includes this: "a conversation with a South African convinces me that the African Alabama song above does not refer to the CSS warship but to a coastal trader".

And another web source says "Major Steenkamp explained that the “Daar Kom Die Alabama” song was not written to commemorate the visit of the Alabama to Cape Town but in fact originated as a corruption of a much older Malay song. He pointed out that the second verse about the ”Nooi, Nooi” and the “rietkooi om op te slaap” was a reference to the marital bed and the special reeds used to make it!"

At one time I had the idea of singing the well known song about the Confederate ship's career, and interspersing comments about what really happened, starting with the place where she was fitted with guns and men not being Liverpool. I would have included the Cape Town visit but was discouraged when I read that the Afrikaans song didn't originally apply to that ship at all.

    Good idea, Richard. I moved all of the messages on the Afrikaans song over here. Hope I didn't confuse things too much.
    -Joe Offer-


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