Lyr Req: Sur la Borde de l'Eau (Gaspard) To Thread - Forum Home

The Mudcat Café TM
https://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=96196
18 messages

Lyr Req: Sur la Borde de l'Eau (Gaspard)

05 Nov 06 - 10:00 PM (#1877155)
Subject: Lyr Req: Sur Le Borde De L'Eau/on the water's edg
From: GUEST,Raven

Does anyone know how I can find the lyrics to this song??? It is by Blind Uncle Gaspard from the 1920s and very beautiful, but I can't find the lyrics anywhere. I can tell the song is about something intriguing, with my shaky grasp of French not quite what... Thanks


05 Nov 06 - 11:00 PM (#1877188)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Sur Le Borde De L'Eau/on the water's edg
From: Malcolm Douglas

I eventually found a sound clip that would play. The tune is closely related to 'La Fille aux Chansons' / 'Marion s'y promène'- recorded back in the 1970s by Malicorne; my copy went missing long ago, so I don't remember what their source was (if they named one). See http://www.gabrielyacoub.com/fr/disque/titre.php?idTitre=151 for a transcription of that lyric.

There's a whole series of French songs that deal with the same basic story; a girl is lured on board a ship by a captain who has designs upon her. In some forms, she escapes by cunning; in others she comes to a ghastly end. I think this may be one of the latter type.

For some related material here, see thread Trois Navires.


05 Nov 06 - 11:30 PM (#1877194)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Sur Le Borde De L'Eau/on the water's edg
From: Malcolm Douglas

See also

ISABEAU S'Y PROMENE (DT file, with tune; no specific source named)

Translation ISABEAU S'Y PROMENE

This form also turns up as 'La Danaé'; the second part appears to have been borrowed at some point from 'Le Plongeur Noyé'. In examples where the girl escapes, she more frequently persuades the sailor that her father is too dangerous to trifle with ("Je suis la fille du bourreau"); it isn't generally necessary to get him drowned.

I have a suspicion (for which, so far, I have no real evidence) that the Canadian song 'The Maid on the Shore' derives from this extended French song family rather than from any British Isles source.


06 Nov 06 - 12:22 AM (#1877202)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Sur Le Borde De L'Eau/on the water's
From: Artful Codger

On the same theme, see also "Le long de la mer" (which Malicorne, or at least Yacoub, also recorded.)


08 Nov 06 - 11:47 PM (#1879885)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Sur Le Borde De L'Eau/on the water's edg
From: Jim Dixon

Apparently Alcide "Blind Uncle" Gaspard's recording was published under the title SUR LA BORDE DE L'EAU although correct French would be SUR LE BORD DE L'EAU. (Maybe Cajuns don't always give nouns the same gender that Parisians do. Maybe the music publishers weren't French-speakers.)

There is a complete mp3 file of Gaspard's recording on this page.

The Virtual Gramophone (click for search page) has 2 playable recordings of ISABEAU S'Y PROMÈNE:

1. Sung by Joseph Saucier, 1915.

2. Sung by Eva Gauthier, 1917.


09 Nov 06 - 12:41 AM (#1879913)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Sur Le Borde De L'Eau/on the water's edg
From: Q (Frank Staplin)

Gaspard's title is correct in Cajun French.
Barry Jean Ancelet, 1984, "Musiciens cadiens et créoles, The Makers of Cajun Music," Univ. Texas Press, in his book on these musicians and their songs, p. 12, states: "Transcriptions from French originals are word for word and thus reflect certain features of Cajun French. For example, genders, pronouns, and tenses are sometimes different from those of academic French."

The following note in Ancelet is not translated.
"Par exemple,
les genres sont parfois différents; les cadiens disent un guitare, mais une accordéon.
Les mots empruntés directement à l'anglais sont presque toujours masculin, tel le 'radio' et le 'television.' Le pronom 'on' remplace presque toujours 'nous.' Le vous de politesse ne s'utilise guère qu'avec les personnes trè ágées; même le vous pluriel est suivi par le verbe au singulier:
vous autres veux. En français cadien, le passé composé peut être actif ou passif, suivant le sens: il a tombé décrit l'acte; il est tombé, le résultat."


02 Apr 11 - 02:27 PM (#3127051)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Sur la Borde de l'Eau (Gaspard)
From: GUEST,Hunter Robertson

Well, a few years after the fact... I was trying to figure out the lyrics and came across this thread. Here's what I come up with from Gaspard's recording:

Un jour je m'y promène tout le long de mon jardin
Tout l'long de mon jardin sur le bord de l'île
Tout l'long de mon jardin sur le bord de l'eau,
Sur le bord de la vaisseau (could be "maison", but "vaisseau" is probably what he says)

Je m'aperçois d'une belle, de trente matelots
Je m'aperçois d'une belle, de trente matelots
De trente matelots sur le bord de l'île
De trente matelots sur le bord de l'île
Sur le bord de la vaisseau.

"Les deux plus jeunes des trentes" is what I hear. "Le plus jeune des trentes" is what shows up in other versions and makes better sense with the later singular "tu"), chante (or "chantez") lui une chanson
Chante(z) lui une chanson sur le bord de l'île
Chante(z) lui une chanson sur le bord de l'eau
Sur le bord de la vaisseau.

La belle chanson tu chante, j'aimerais la savoir
La belle chanson tu chante, j'aimerais la savoir
J'aimerais la savoir sur le bord de l'île
J'aimerais la savoir sur le bord de l'eau,
Sur le bord de la vaisseau.

Ma belle, rentrez dans ma bar' (barque? barge?), je vous la montrerai
Ma belle, rentrez dans ma ??? (sounds like "berge", but that doesn't make sense. "Barge"?), je vous la montrerai
Je vous la montrerai sur le bord de l'île
Je vous la montrerai sur le bord de l'eau,
Sur le bord de la vaisseau.

La belle fut? embarquer, elle se mise a pleurer
Elle se mise a pleurer sur le bord de l'île
Elle se mise a pleurer sur le bord de l'eau,
Sur le bord de la vaisseau.

Hunter


02 Apr 11 - 04:05 PM (#3127122)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Sur la Borde de l'Eau (Gaspard)
From: Monique

Last line of each verse is "Sur le bord d'un vaisseau"
3rd verse 2nd line, I hear "chantai(en)t-z-une chanson"
4th verse "La belle chanson qu' tu chantes"
5th verse, 2nd line I hear "dans ma terre" -which makes little sense unless he'd mean "enter my property/come home" (on land)
6th verse, "La belle fut embarquée et s'est mise à pleurer"


02 Apr 11 - 06:08 PM (#3127181)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Sur la Borde de l'Eau (Gaspard)
From: GUEST,Hunter Robertson

Thanks Monique, those are an improvement.

Hunter


03 Apr 11 - 01:32 AM (#3127337)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Sur la Borde de l'Eau (Gaspard)
From: michaelr

From a non-French speaker: does "sur le bord de l"eau" translate to "by the waterside"? And might that be whence Bordeaux is derived?


03 Apr 11 - 04:33 AM (#3127388)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Sur la Borde de l'Eau (Gaspard)
From: Monique

Yes, "sur le bord de l'eau" translates to "by the waterside" (word for word "on the side/bank of the water").
Bordeaux was founded 3 centuries B.C. and was then called "Burdigala" in Gaulish. It might comes from "burd" (cove) and "gala" (marsh). It might... but we don't know for sure, some people have other theories. Anyway, whatever the original meaning, the name Bordeaux evolved from it.


03 Apr 11 - 02:14 PM (#3127760)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Sur la Borde de l'Eau (Gaspard)
From: michaelr

Merci beaucoup, Monique.


18 Mar 15 - 02:32 PM (#3695095)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Sur la Borde de l'Eau (Gaspard)
From: GUEST,Juan

Hello everybody,

I have been intrigued and amazed by this beatiful old cajun song since I heard it in the Detective show.
I think I can do a little contribution on the lyrics. The word "vaisseau" probably means ship. Its form and pronunciation is very close to "vaixell" in the valencian accent of catalan language (Eastern Spain). And it litterally means ship or vessel. Thus, it seems to go along the meaning of the song.

I hope this helps.

Best regards from Valencia, Spain.

Juan


18 Mar 15 - 02:58 PM (#3695104)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Sur la Borde de l'Eau (Gaspard)
From: GUEST,#

http://filoutube.tumblr.com/post/79694466752

Hear it there.


18 Mar 15 - 07:15 PM (#3695160)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Sur la Borde de l'Eau (Gaspard)
From: Monique

The word "vaisseau" does mean "ship".
Now, on the last verse, he sings "La belle fuit embarquée, elle s'est mise à pleurer" while the standard form is "fut". There's the same pattern in Par derrière chez mon père.


29 Apr 15 - 12:55 AM (#3705050)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Sur la Borde de l'Eau (Gaspard)
From: GUEST,Zach

In Cajun French, berge is a common way to pronounce barge. Also, it sounds like he's saying "Je m'aperçois d'une berge de trente matelots", which makes more sense than seeing "une belle" with thirty sailors on it.


29 Apr 15 - 01:36 AM (#3705063)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Sur la Borde de l'Eau (Gaspard)
From: GUEST,#

Lyrics here.


01 Jul 15 - 03:35 PM (#3720328)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Sur la Borde de l'Eau (Gaspard)
From: GUEST,Chinaskee

I'd suggest that "berge/barge" could be related to "barge" (=cutter, skiff http://www.wordreference.com/fren/barge). Awesome ballade.