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Put Yer Backs Into It, Lads

Put Yer Backs Into It, Lads! (Aarrr!)

(A fun an’ rowdy song for th’ pirate in ye)

Verse 1 –

Avast, a storm be rollin’ in,
Like one I sees before.
And wit’ th’ rain, come mem’ries,
Th’ ones I have o’ her.

We hauled th’ lass from thunderin’ sea,
Soakin’ down t’ th’ bone.
Her eyes showed she’d been places,
No man alive had known.

Chorus –

Put yer backs into it, lads!
Th’ storm be gettin’ high.
Put yer backs into it, lads!
Th’ sea, black as th’ sky.
Aarrr (Aarrr!) - Aarrr (Aarrr!)
Two more days ‘till we be home!
Aarrr (Aarrr!) - Aarrr (Aarrr!)
Ice an’ cold be in me bones!
Davey Jones be callin’,
Callin’ fer yer souls;
Put yer backs into it, lads!

Verse 2

That storm it linger’d on fer days,
Crashin’ waves ‘pon her soul.
Deep in th’ wind, he called her,
‘Neath thund’rin’ echoes roll.

‘Twas that dark night she heard him thar,
In th’ still heart o’ th’ storm.
Foamin’ waves soon embrac’d her,
An’ carried her t’ his arms.

Chorus –

Put yer backs into it, lads!
Th’ storm be gettin’ high.
Put yer backs into it, lads!
Th’ sea, black as th’ sky.
Aarrr (Aarrr!) - Aarrr (Aarrr!)
Two more days ‘till we be home!
Aarrr (Aarrr!) - Aarrr (Aarrr!)
Ice an’ cold be in me bones!
Davey Jones be callin’,
Callin’ fer yer souls;
Put yer backs into it, lads!


Thunder echoes through th’ night;
Th’ sea begins t’ stir.
Drivin’ rain wash o’er me,
With mem’ries o’ her.

Chorus –

Put yer backs into it, lads!
Th’ storm be gettin’ high.
Put yer backs into it, lads!
Th’ sea, black as th’ sky.
Aarrr (Aarrr!) - Aarrr (Aarrr!)
Two more days ‘till we be home!
Aarrr (Aarrr!) - Aarrr (Aarrr!)
Ice an’ cold be in me bones!
Davey Jones be callin’,
Callin’ fer yer souls;
Put yer backs into it, lads!

Cap’n talkin’ –

This be yer Cap’n speakin’.
Avast, ye scurvy rats!
Smartly now, me hearties,
Put yer backs into it, lads.

Copyright © 2010 Clark "Cap’n Traveler" Graff


by Brian Lockhart

I be sippin' me rum while on top o' me ship
A vessel I noticed weighed anchor
I be hungry t' pillage, plunder, an' loot
In me bones I feel I could take 'er

Me blood thirsty mates boarded their craft
T' seek-out booty & treasure
Damned t' Hades the curse o' me soul
Cries out for me worldly pleasure


Hoist ye bones of ye ol' Jolly Roger
Shiver me timbers says I
Gim'me wealth o' the worldly gold
Or lock me in irons t' die

Avast, me hearties, where be yo' Captain?
He'll taste of me cutlass says I
With me sward in me hand, prepared for battle
Confronted I'll rip out his eye


I be takin' yo' ship, an' increase me fleet
A scurvy bilge rat shocker
You'll be jumping the plank into the drink
Introduced t' Davey Jone's locker


Another pirate parody:

Words and music (c) 2003 Joseph Abbott

Some men fight for country and crown
Some men fight for silver and gold
Some men fight to win their renown
Some men, they just do as they're told

Some men kill for a bit o' coconut
Some men kill for a nut praline
But give *me* all o' your fake chocolate
For I'm a pirate o' the carob bean

Ohhhhh... fifteen Mounds on a dead man's chest
Yoo-hoo-hoo, and a bottle o' Tums
Twix and the Snickers had done for the rest
Yoo-hoo-hoo, and a bottle o' Tums
Yoo-hoo-hoo! - and a bottle o' Tums

A fan alerts us to "The Last Saskatchewan Pirate" by The Arrogant Worms

New .mp3 versions of a traditional pirate tune, arranged by B&Massa:

The Cardiff Rose - a traditional pirate chanty recited (with sound effects) by Viking Jim (.mp3 format)

Listen to "Straight Outta Portsmouth," a pirate rap (!) penned especially for National Public Radio's coverage of Talk Like A Pirate Day 2003 by Spin magazine writer Chris Norris

Grant Gaudet of Port Sulphur, Louisiana writes: "My family are descendants of the abandoned families of the Jean Lafitte pirates, mostly still residing around Barataria Bay in Louisiana. Many of our relatives are now respectable town-dwellers, but for us, it's the (legal) shrimping business with a side of (not at all legal) moonless-night oystering. Living in the swamps, we traditionally have had to create our own entertainment for all the generations, and one of our entertainments is that we have our own family pirating song. It's a silly shanty of sorts, listing our adventures and each family member gets a stanza. Even the pet shrimp (yes, the pet shrimp) has a role in the song. With every birth, we add a person, with every funeral, we strike one. ... We are truly horrible singers, so it always comes out just right."

(Tempo: rollicking)

When pirates sail the seas, we can do whatever we please.
We'll attack yer ship and overpower yer crew.
Taking every coin and jewel, we can be so mean and cruel!
And here's some things that pirates often do:
We cut ya in two. We run you thru!
When we pirates take to pirating today.
We're sinking all yer boats, stealing everything that floats.
We cut ya in two, run ya thru. Sink yer boats, steal what floats.
Put all yer best in the treasure chest, and then we sail away.

We dug for buried treasure, since I stole a treasure map.
My kids brought up the treasure chest, and set it in my lap.
I had to use a chisel just to break off all the locks.
We tossed away the treasure and we all fought for the box!
We started a brawl, with swords and all.
When we found a buried treasure box today.
We can always find more gold, but the box looked rare and old!
We dug up the box, broke the locks. Threw out the gold, the box was old.
We all fought our best for that treasure chest, and then we sailed away.

Now I'd like to introduce ya to the crew upon my boat.
Though on land they're sweet as sugar, they get mean when we're afloat.
And there's really very little that these pirates wouldn't do.
Our fun is paid exclusively by boaters just like you!
My pirating crew, is family too,
And we have our eyes on all you prize today.
We're sinking all yer boats, stealing everything that floats.
My pirating crew is family too. We have our eyes on all you prize.
We'll put all yer best in our treasure chest, and then we sail away.

Jason's our youngest pirate, he seems like a normal kid.
But today's his first day pirating, and this is what he did:
He snuck aboard a sailing ship, then leapt from where he hid.
Well, what took place this morning is enough to blow yer lid!
He cut up the crew, and cooked ‘em too!
On his first day out a-pirating today.
They were quite a smelly bunch, but with bread made quite a lunch!
He cut up the crew, cooked ‘em too. Made a smelly bunch into our lunch.
Then threw all their best in the treasure chest, and then we sailed away.

Now Jessica is beautiful, she's always been a joy.
But she only took to pirating to find herself a boy.
She climbed up on the mast today, and shouted, "Guys ahoy!"
She's not the greatest pirate, but at least she isn't coy!
The guys turned and ran, as fast as guys can.
As our pirate ship came sailing in the bay.
Then they drove off in their car because they know how pirates are!
She wanted a boy, and shouted, "Ahoy!"
The guys turned and ran as fast as guys can,
So Jessica just stuck out her tongue at them, and then we sailed away.

Myrtle the shrimp does night watch, but she's not so good at all.
For she's forced to live in water, and her eyes are very small.
When the ship gets firmly grounded in the mud or in the sand,
She softly squeaks her warning, which cannot be heard by man!
She cries her alarm, She warns of harm,
But we cannot hear a thing she has to say.
And despite the skills we taught ‘er, she can only work in water.
She cries her alarm, she warns of harm. We haven't heard a single word.
We wait for the tide, then off we slide, and gladly sail away.

Grant Junior is our first mate, and he's proved the best of mates,
Why, he fought his way to heaven, and he stole the Pearly Gates!
Now the heavens are wide open. When our dying day is due,
We'll simply steer for heaven, and we'll sail the ship right thru!
Our best of mates, stole the Pearly Gates!
When we pirates took to pirating today.
We're sinking all yer boats, stealing everything that floats!
Our best of mates stole Pearly Gates,
We've rigged them now as anchor weights,
If we don't like it when we're in heaven, then we'll simply sail away.

My loving mom is a pirate too, now forcibly retired.
Because they caught her after her Pirate's Permit had expired.
She couldn't get a new one, and she took it pretty rough.
The county clerk said, "Sorry, but you aren't cruel enough."
My mom is sad. They did her bad. So she isn't out a-pirating today.
With no permit in her hand, she's been forced to stay on land.
No permit in hand, she stays on land. The county clerk won't let her work.
She's there on the sand, I wave my hand, and then we sail away.

But the cruelest living pirate is my ‘tender loving wife.'
If I dare to argue with her, she'll come at me with a knife!
And a compliment each hour is her very strict demand.
The few times I've forgotten is why I'm a ‘holey' man!
She'll cut me in two. She'll run me thru!
If she doesn't every minute get her way.
And I tell her she is sweet, or she'll leave me like ground meat.
She'll cut me in two, run me thru. I flatter my wife to preserve my life.
With a tender sound I can calm her down, and live to sail away.

FINALE (first four lines sung slowly)

We are the only pirates left who plunder on the sea.
Pirating's out of fashion, now we have democracy.
Pirates'll go where the looting's good, the jobs they've all selected,
Are the Senators and the Congressmen. Only pirates get elected!
They're plundering too. They plunder you!
So they've swapped their swords for politics today.
The last pirates still afloat, are the ones here on this boat.
Now pirates are few, just me and you. So climb aboard and grab a sword.
At sea it's more fun than in Washington, so now let's sail away!


Frankly the Pirate
by Dread Pirate Willy
(to the tune o' "Frosty the Snowman")

Franky the pirate
Was a jolly happy dog
with a corncob pipe and an eyepatch
and a peg made out of a oar
Franky the Pirate
Is a saltydog they say
he was hanged in shame
but the seadogs claimed
he would be back someday

There must have been some magic
In that old eyepatch they found
for when they put on that scurvy skull
he began to jiggle around

Franky the Pirate
Was alive as he could be
And the seadogs say
he could slice and slay
Just the same as you and me

Franky the Pirate
knew his time was short
So he said let's drink some rum
and we'll have some fun
before the devil drags me away

Down to the Village
With a saber in his hand
Running Villagers through around the square
screaming bloody murder the livelong day
He led his seadogs down the streets of town
right to the traffic cop
And he only paused a moment
to run him thru as he shouted "Stop"
Franky The Pirate
Had to hurry away
saying don't you cry
you landlubbin fairies
I'll hack you to death someday

yo ho ho
yo ho ho
Look at Franky go
you ho ho
yo ho ho
down to hell he goes

Words & Music By Tom Callinan
© 1998 - CANNU YUSIC, LTD.

I be the IZOD pirate, with an eye-patch, white and green,
Me duffle bag's from Land's End, and me duffs from L.L. Bean.
Me steward brings me caviar, and me porter totes me gear,
Got a beeper in me scabbard, got a cell-phone in me ear.

REFRAIN: Singin' "lah-dee-dah",
Sailin' near and fah,
And I never breaks a sweat,
With a ferret, not a parrot,
On me shoulder for a pet!

I rides me trusty Jetski, as I trades commodities,
Barkin' orders to me broker, corporate-raidin' globally!
Buyin' long and selling shorter, lots of booty in the bank,
And if any dares to cross me, they'll walk me hand-carved plank!


And when I goes to battle, me suit's by Brothers Brooks,
Me lackey valet dresses me, like 'Smee did Captain Hook,
Me spy-glass is a satellite, and me chopper shuttles me
From me Cris-Craft cabin-cruiser, anywhere I please.


By Audi, Saab, or Volvo, I travels to the docks,
Or me S.U.V. transports me to me safe deposit box.
When we ties-up at the yacht club, we dines on surf n' turf;
No Jolly Roger on me flag, just a cute and cuddly Smurf!


Pirates Home
by Brian Piontek

(Listen to the song here .)

Avast! We've left that blasted land.
Pillage the village with my pirate clan.
Raped all the women and drank all ye grog.
Left out to sea in the thick of the fog.

Aye aye aye yeee
Raise the mast cast out to sea
Aye aye aye yooo
When yer a pirate the sea is you home

I'll play my hornpipe for a buxom beauty
In hopes mabey she will give up the booty
Well shiver me timbers shes homeward bound
That buxom beauty just blew me down

You filthy ole bilge rat you smell is all rank
you chum suck'in skerve dog you'll soon walk the plank
Then me looks to the crows nest without a flench
Saw captin Jon with that bilge rats ole wench


© Marcy Marxer, 2 Spoons Music, ASCAP From the recording "Scat Like That: A Musical Word Odyssey" on Rounder Records, by GRAMMY Award winners Cathy Fink & Marcy Marxer.
All rights reserved.

I'm a crusty old pirate, I live by the sea
I say ARR! To me mates and they say ARR! To me
We'll sing a sea chantey and play the guitar
The swashbucklers favorite song ARR ARR ARR ARR

We sail the high seas and the small ones to boot
Just a bunch of old scallywags lookin' for loot
Where X marks the spot on the treasure map thar
With a heave! and a ho! and an ARR ARR ARR ARR


And it's yo ho ho And it's hoist the sail high
"Swab the deck";, says the captain The crew says, "AYE.
A happy swashbuckler will tell you point blank
He'd rather be swabbin' than walkin' the plank

The lookout first mate At the captains behest
Has climbed up the mast and he's in the crows nest
He's lookin' for ships with his binocular
And when he sees them he'll shout ARR ARR ARR ARR

You had best close your eyes when we sit down to eat
For manners are lost on a pirating fleet
We gobble our grub, slurp our grog from a jar
And when we are finished we'll ARR ARR ARR ARR

CH: And it's yo ho ho

There's a patch on me eye and there's stripes on me shirt
We're surrounded by water and still we find dirt
Our hats have three corners they're triangular
We wear them while singing our ARR ARR ARR ARR

When pirates sing, they sing boldly and proud
When pirates are sleeping they snore very loud
And when pirates laugh they say HAR DE HAR HAR!
The rest of the time they say ARR ARR ARR ARR

A Buccaneers' life is exciting and bold
ŒTis a charming story that ought to be told
As I sit on the deck, to write me memoir
I open me log and write AR AR AR AR

And it's yo ho ho And it's hoist the sail high
"Swab the deck";, says the captain The crew says "AYE. AYE!";
Avast me hearties, you're the finst by far
We sail the high seas with our Arr Arr Arr Arr
We'll shiver me timbers , it's Arr Arr Arr Arr

Pirate Birthday Song
Rita "Calico Bess" Sherwood
(sung to the tune of "Blow the Man Down"

Ye know it be yer fault we’re singin’ this way,
Yo! Ho! It be yer fault! 1st mate:
For had we not known it be Pirate Talk Day, All:
We’d be a singin’ Happy Birthday!

And so we be gather’d, yer chums and ye kin, All: “
Thank ye, Mates fer lettin’ us in.” 1st mate: .
.to celebrate with ye for a-nother year All:
Lift up yer mugs and give ‘em a cheer!

The candles be meltin’ all over the cake, All:
Give ‘em some time to blow them all out! 1st mate:
Ye better start puffin’ befur it’s too late! All:
Now be th’ time to blow them all out! Now be the time to blow them all out.

The ballad of Umpy Dumpy (and other ditties sung to traditional tunes)
Kerry "Keelhauler Goodfellow" Sullivan

Ol' 'Umpy Dumpy, the Pirate man
Swigs his rum from an ol' tin can
Drinks 'is booze whenever he can
Dreams about his Pirate plan!

He sits on a wall in Tortuga Town
Sinking the rum till the sun goes down
Dreaming of jewels and a golden crown,
Doeskin boots and a velvet gown.

The King's fine horses and the King's fine men
Search for Ol' 'Umpy again and again
But come on One or come on Ten!
They can't find Dumpy or his Pirate den.

The sun goes down and so does the rum
So does 'Umpy - and lands on his Bum!
He's fell off the wall and he's feeling glum
And his Pirate plans have flown to Kingdom Come!


Pub-Pub-Publican -'ave you any grog?
Aye,Aye, Cap'n! Best Black Dog!
One for the Bosun, One for 'is Crew,
One for the cabin boy to make 'im spew

Pop Goes the Plunder

Half a chest of pieces of eight, dice and rum and fightin'
That's the way the plunder goes - quicker than lightnin'
Lusty wenches - joints of beef- quicker than thunder
All us Pirates come to grief - Pop goes the plunder!