Paddle Your Own Canoe

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PADDLE YOUR OWN CANOE. English. A c. 1865 music hall "motto" song with lyrics written by Harry Clifton [1], also rendered as a quadrille tune. However, the music was composed by Victorian musician Charles Coote, Jr., a prolific composer of songs and popular instrumental works. In a letter to the editor of Era Magazine (1899) he revealed the refrain was taken from his waltz "Queen of the Harvest (The)."

I've traveled about a bit in me time.
Of troubles I've seen a few,
I found it far better in every clime
To paddle me own canoe.

Me wants they are small. I care not at all.
Me debts they are paid when due.
I drive away strife from the ocean of life,
And paddle me own canoe.

Source for notated version:

Printed sources:

Recorded sources: Topic 12TS283, Ned Pearson. Topic TSCD 669, Ned Pearson (et al) – “Ranting and Reeling: Dance Music of the north of England” (1998. Fiddler Pearson was born c. 1875 at Cambo, near Morpeth, Northumberland). Victor 35585 (78 RPM).

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