Mudcat Café message #2653485 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #102165   Message #2653485
Posted By: GUEST,Lighter
10-Jun-09 - 05:40 PM
Thread Name: Origin: John Cherokee
Subject: RE: John Cherokee
Try again:

Eckstorm & Smyth, p. 240:


A negro chantey....

A Yankee ship and a Yankee crew,
Jan Kanaganaga too-lie-aye.

A Yankee ship with a Yankee mate,
Jan Kanaganaga too-lie-aye.

If you stop to walk he'll change your gait.
Jan Kanaganaga too-lie-aye.

Their informant, a Captain Creighton wrote that the song never failed "to bring down the house when sung by a few old salts that know how to get the funny yodel-like notes that were common in the good old times of the 'down-east square-rigger.'"

So maybe Downeast sailors also yodeled more than many others. (Hence the word "Mainiacs.")

E & S's text may be "fragmentary" in its lack of a "grand chorus," but if the lines were "strung out," it would be about the same length as a great many field-collected shanty texts. And it would also start to resemble "John Cherokee" a little.