The first of Fairport's long instrumental explorations; a 19th century tragic ballad, impeccably performed by all, very restrained initially, with a change of tempo and richness of sound midway through the song, and a long instrumental coda, apparently recorded live in the studio, that seems to re-express the meaning of the song through the tension and dynamism of the interplay. Dave Swarbrick guests.
A sailor's life, it is a merry life
He robs young girls of their heart's delight
Leaving them behind to weep and mourn
They never know when they will return