A song from the Copper Family repertoire, included in Bob Copper’s memoire Early to Rise. Internet sources seem to agree that it was originally an English parlour song, words by Charles Jefferys, set to music by Sidney Nelson in 1836. Various versions can be found at the Lester S. Levy Sheet Music Collection and also at Ballads Online.
I’m not sure who I first heard singing the song. I have a vague recollection that it was the Coppers themselves on a Radio 2 broadcast. Or perhaps Nic Jones (on the Bandoggs LP), or the Oyster Band’s John Jones at a pub session.
While the Coppers repeat the last line of each verse as a refrain, I sing the same chorus throughout. I have, however, retained the Coppers’ somewhat irregular timing in the chorus. And I have it on good authority from Pete Collins, who was once privileged to sing bass with the Copper Family, that Bob would have approved of the fact that I sing “Dale” with two syllables.
Rose of Allendale