The Crafty Maid's Policy​/​Fingal's Cave (strathspey​)​/​Sheepskins & Beeswax (reel)

from by Lindsay Straw

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Another one learned from Frankie Armstrong's Lovely on the Water, and arranged in a snappy Scottish style with the help of Armand and Ben. The tunes were ideas from them as well. Though it's another tale of brains versus brawn much like "The Outlandish Knight", it's noted in My Song Is My Own that this and other later broadsides like "Blow Away the Morning Dew" have more self-confidence than the older songs, and certainly plenty of good humor.


Come listen awhile and I’ll sing you a song,
Of three merry gentlemen riding along.
They met a fair maid and to her did say,
“We’re afraid this cold morning will do you some harm.”

“Oh, no, kind sirs, I’m afraid you’re mistaken,
To think this cold morning will do me some harm.
But there’s one thing I crave, which lies twixt your legs,
And if you give me that, it will keep me warm.”

“Well, since you do crave it, my dear, you shall have it,
If you’ll come with me to yonder green tree.
And since you do crave it, my dear, you shall have it,
And I’ll make these two gentlemen witness to be.”

So, the gentleman lighted and straightway she mounted,
And looking the gentleman hard in the face,
Saying, “You knew not my meaning; you wrong understood me.”
And away she went galloping down the long lane.

Come, gentlemen, lend me one of your horses,
That I may ride after her down the long lane.
If I overtake her, I warrant I’ll make her,
Return unto me my own horse again.

But when this fair maid, she saw him a-coming,
She instantly then took a pistol in hand,
Saying, “Doubt not my skill or that you I would kill;
I’d have you stand back or you are a dead man.”

“Oh, why do you spend your time here in talking?
Why do you spend your time here in vain?
Come give her a guinea; it’s what she deserves.
And I warrant she’ll give you your horse back again.”

“Oh, no, kind sirs, you’re vastly mistaken,
If it is his loss, well, it is my gain.
And you were a witness that he gave it to me.”
And away she went galloping over the plain.


from The Fairest Flower of Womankind, released April 28, 2017
Bouzouki & Vocals: Lindsay Straw
Concertina: Benedict Gagliardi
Fiddle: Armand Aromin



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Lindsay Straw Boston, Massachusetts

Boston-based traditional folk singer, guitarist & bouzouki player.

"Hearken(s) back to more innocent times, of Greenwich Village and pure folk." - The Living Tradition

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