MICHAEL (ROW THE BOAT ASHORE)

Latest update on 29/04/2019

Artist: Pete Seeger
Author: trad./Saletan
Label: Folkways
Year: 1956

Afro-American 19th century folksong from the south-eastern US. Various versions collected during field trips performed by William Allen, Charles Ware and Lucy McKim Garrison right after the Civil War and published in their songbook Slave Songs Of The United States (1867). Abolitionist Ware heard rowers sing it on St. Helena Island. First resurfaced with arranger Tony Saletan in 1954 while he was looking for good folk song material for a summer camp he was supposed to lead. Introduced at this Shaker Village Work Camp, New Lebanon, NY. Seeger learned it directly from him.

Covers:

1961:

Highwaymen [n°1 US]

1961:

Lonnie Donegan

1962:

Tokens

1962:

Harry Belafonte

1963:

Brothers Four

1963:

Steve Alaimo

1964:

Trini Lopez

1964:

Rika Zarai [hit Fr]

1967:

Jane Hunter & the Moving Star Hall Singers [field recording from John's Island, South Carolina by Guy Carawan on Folkways lp Been In The Storm So Long as Row Michael Row (spiritual)]

1970:

Les Humphries Singers [B-side of To My Father's House]

1979:

Richard John Smith [n°1 South Africa]

1996:

Havenzangers [als Hallelujah]

Since '65 also sung as Wij zijn samen onderweg, alleluja in Dutch speaking countries.

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