Music, Lyrics, Vocals, and Bouzouki - Glyn Collinson
Vocals, Guitar, and Arrangement - Rowena Gee

Bass, Drums, and Production,- Ben Clayton
Da Quays Studios
, 2009


Glyn Collinson
Posted 11/09/2009 - 16:30

A very common kind of traditional British Folk song is that of the "broken token" variety. In this format, you'll have some girl staring forelornly out to sea because her (boyfriend/lover/fiance)e* has left her to join the (army/navy/orange & blue)*. And of course, she sings as she stares at the sea "oh woah is me, for my lad is far from me", etc, etc etc.

Seven years passes, and still the girl stares out to sea waiting for her (sailor/soldier/lad)* to return. (You'd have thought that she'd at least have gone down the pub by this point). She is tapped on her shoulder by some freakishly ugly guy (i.e....EXHIBIT A) who asks her to go (dancing/ to bed / to get married)*, etc. Her first reaction is, "like, no way". But then he produces a broken ring, or other such "token" that she has the other half of, prooving that this malformed creature is infact her long lost boy returned from the sea. Then, off they go to get married, and how happy they are, etc.

For really good examples of the breed, check out Kate Rusby who introduced me to these songs. A good example is "Cruel"...

At any rate, it occured to me that to my knowledge, no-one has yet written a broken token song from the analogous male point of view. What with gender equality creeping ever so slowly into the military, we can have a boy whose (girlfriend/lover/fiance)e* has left him to join the (army/navy)*.

I have attempted to fill this need. However, I will point out that "Sailor Girl" differs strikingly from the traditional song form in that it is bereft of

  1. A sailor called "Will"

  2. A 7 year wait for the last verse

  3. And come to think of it...

  4. A broken token

At any rate, do let me know what you think...


*(delete as appropriate)

He grew up by the sea
Spent every day looking out at the waves
Wondering where she could now be
He rubbed the sand in the palm of his hand (of his hand)

Sure tough living in a modern world
Falling in love with a Sailor Girl
Who ran away to the sea
But I don't mind living in a modern world
Falling in love with a Sailor Girl
She will come back to me
She'll come back to me

He was melancholy
All he would say was that she sailed away
"Is she still thinking of me?"

Said any day she will be on her way (on her way)


As he looked through the spray
He saw a girl staring out at the world
Walked up to him as she said
"I've sailed the blue and I've come back to you (back to you)"

This album, including its songs and lyrics, may be downloaded for personal (non-commercial) use only. For all other purposes, please contact the artist.

Creative Commons License
Sailor Girl is copyright Glyn Collinson 2008, licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 2.0 UK: England & Wales License