Folk Songs from the Southern Highlands - online songbook

Southern Appalachians songs with lyrics, commentary & some sheet music.

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Ballads and Songs
58
ONE MORNING IN MAY
This song is nearly identical with Sandburg, p. 136. Cf. also Thomas, p. 112.
"The Nightingale." The song was recorded in the vicinity of Cumber­land Gap, Tennessee, by Ruth Bagwell, a student in Lincoln Memorial University.
1. One morning, one morning, one morning in May 1 met a fair couple a-making their way;
And one was a lady so neat and so fair; The other a soldier, a brave volunteer.
2. "Good morning, good morning, good morning to thee; Oh, where are you going, my pretty lady?"
"Oh, 1 am going to the banks of the sea
To see the waters a-gliding — hear the nightingales sing."
3. We haven't been a-standing but an hour or two, When out from his knapsack, a fiddle he drew; The tune that he played make the valleys ring,
Oh, see the waters a-gliding — hear the nightingale sing.
4. "Pretty lady, pretty lady, it's time to give o'er." "Oh, no, pretty soldier, please play one tune more; I'd rather hear your fiddle or the touch of one string As see the waters a-gliding — hear the nightingale sing.
5. "Pretty soldier, pretty soldier, will you marry me ?" "Oh, no, pretty lady, that never can be;
I have a wife in London and children twice three; Two wives in the army's too many for me.
6. "I'll go back to London and stay there one year And often I'll think of you, my little dear;
If ever I return, 'twill be in the spring
To see the waters a-ghding — hear the nightingale sing."
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E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III