A Musical Exploration of the Traditional Sea Shanty What Do You Do with a Drunken Sailor

Introduction to Exploring the Meaning Behind the What Do You Do With a Drunken Sailor Lyrics

What do you do with a drunken sailor is an old sea shanty that has been sung by various seafaring people of the world for centuries. This timeless tune is often seen as one of the most popular jigs to be passed down through generations, but what might it actually mean? What deeper thoughts could this raucous maritime melody be signifying? In this blog post, we’ll take a look at some possible interpretations of this famous song and explain why it’s one of the most beloved shanties of all time.

From a storyteller or bard’s point of view, this song can be viewed from several perspectives. First off, it may serve as an educational tool for new sailors; providing both nautical instructions on how to deal with a shipmate who has drunk too much rum aboard. The instructions are complicated and done in response to the repeated phrase “what do you do with a drunken sailor” which serves as both instruction and punishment (with potential repercussions). Secondly, it may be viewed as a humorous way to contrast the otherwise monotonous life at sea. That being said, when looking further into its origins we find that there are alternative readings.

One such interpretation looks towards colonialism and slavery; specifically demonstrating how harsher punishments would be inflicted upon those outside societal norms or those unwilling to comply – creating an ever-lasting reminder across generations of who had control over others and instilling fear into all. The same phrase is repeated over again serving as a constant reminder to all what will happen if they fail to submit – emphasizing why people existed in compliance during colonial times.

Furthermore, theories suggest that this song served as a subtle commentary on naval life after Britain’s loss in the War Of 1812. A ship filled with drunken soldiers was thought to symbolize incompetence amongst their captains, leading eventually towards larger critiques about authority figures within British hierarchy throughout maritime communities worldwide. Therefore, debate arises about whether or not these lyrics or merely humorous entertainment or went deeper than initially perceived. No single answer has been argued definitively yet these themes remain in focus today: The meaning behind What Do You Do With A Drunken Sailor takes multiple forms depending on its historical context ranging from instructional information all the way through political satire and commentaries on human nature.*

This ultimately makes understanding Why Do You Do With A Drunken Sailor not only fun exercise but also provides insight from different genre across history expressing themselves via storytelling devices like Sea Shanties which have lasted for centuries

Historical Origins of the What Do You Do With a Drunken Sailor Lyrics

The classic song “What Do You Do With a Drunken Sailor” has been around for centuries, though the exact origin of its lyrics is unknown. Most likely it was passed down through generations as an oral tradition, and as with many traditional songs, various versions have emerged over time. The most common version talks of a drunken sailor who needs to be disciplined in order to get him back into normal sobriety.

This idea finds echoes in other maritime lore from ages past. Ancient Mediterranean cultures had stories of seafaring gods who were associated with alcohol and debauchery—think of the Roman god Bacchus or the Greek Dionysus. In other ancient myths we see similar narratives about sailors flying too close to the Sun or coming across supernatural creatures such as whales and sirens—stories which also involve intoxication at sea. This is perhaps why “What Do You Do With a Drunken Sailor?” has remained popular throughout so many ages.

When it comes to finding out who wrote these nautical-themed words first, we hit a snag: although references to “What Do You Do With a Drunken Sailor?” appear early on in records, attributing an author remains elusive. What we do know is that the earliest printed version appeared in 1823 on Roud #408; this iteration included modified lyrics not found in any current versions today. Whatever inspiration poured through those original authors (perhaps stemming from some lost artifact locked away centuries ago?), they seemed satisfactorily content with creating their own take on things rather than clinging closely to established lines like today’s putative sources tend to do.

We don’t want you walking away disappointed, so let us offer one possible explanation for where our beloved drunken sailor tale has come from: it could very well be modeled after two nineteenth century plays: Looney Ben Looney’s Farce or The Nutshells of Penelope and Harlequin Fortunio & His Flying Ship written by James Kenney (1780 – 1849). Both are comical tales involving an intemperately drunk man taken aboard ship by force, his chaotic antics causing havoc amongst the crew before eventually being subdued. And although neither works appear to bear direct relation lyrically speaking with “What Do You Do With A Drunken Sailor?” there are quite a few similarities between them both when compared side by side—from subject matter right down to phraseology here and there! While this is just one theory among numerous exhausted ones facing impossible odds in proving authentication either way however, it does appeal quite nicely towards providing some form of beginning roots for those muddled mindset melodies that resonate within our hearts even now…

Musical Analysis of What Do You Do With a Drunken Sailor and its Themes

What Do You Do With a Drunken Sailor is an old English sea shanty which has gone on to be a popular song among society both historically and today. The song was originally sung as a accompaniment when sailing ships were tasked with difficult or dangerous activities, for instance raising the anchor. By ‘setting the rhythm of work’ it is believed that singing this type of music helped with working efficiency and morale aboard the ship at hand.

Instrumentally, “What Do You Do With A Drunken Sailor” features positive-sounding instruments such as tambourines and fiddles which suggest an up-beat nature even while advancing upon somber topics such as intoxication and ultimately death in a sailor’s life. This suggestion however has been disputed by some musicologists who instead note slow pacing of the tempo and underlying emotions within lyrics suggests that nautical life was at times melancholic for those sailors living uncertain lives abroad their vessels.

From a lyrical standpoint, the song centers around themes of drinking culture seen throughout seafaring societies past and present; elevated levels of alcohol consumption aboard boats may have acted as moderated respite from chaotic seas or too allowed sailors to temporarily gain courage early facing harsh realities which would inevitably face them come port time. Other prominent motifs present may include ones referencing maritime law such forms reference punishments given to rule breakers in the form of confinement below deck or more religious sentimentality towards piousness in lifestyle additionally mentioned multiple times throughout. Furthermore each section ends with repeated refrains chorus offering some esthetic pleasure by combining arguably two of pieces most impactful phrases (‘Oh what shall we do with drunken sailor?’ followed soon after with ‘Early in the morning!’.) into repetitively sequence sure to grasp listeners attention quickly and succinctly due its often merry reception amongst audiences across many ages/cultures worldwide.

Overall, What Do You Do With A Drunken Sailor stands out thanks not just its unique instrumentation but storytelling through lyrics well marketed simple approach any age demographic can understand whilst stimulating desired reactions should performed publicly allowing appreciation culture past endeavours hardships faced overcome adversity respectively help create long lasting effect viewers mind resonate generations come something quite remarkable accredit performers generations passed .

Cultural Significance of the Drinking Song Over Time

The drinking song has been an integral part of popular culture for centuries and its influence has been deeply felt throughout the world. Despite its universal presence in bars, pubs and other social establishments, the drinking song is more than just a way to facilitate merriment among friends; it’s also a reflection of a society’s beliefs, values and traditions.

Traditionally viewed as a way to encourage good cheer while celebrating life and milestones (as seen in traditional Irish drinking songs like ‘The Wild Rover’), the drinking song has evolved into various other forms over time. During certain eras – such as during post-war America – there was even a trend towards using the medium to satirize contemporary politics or society, as seen with songs like “Theodore” by Tom Lehrer. In folk music as well – such as Italian-America folk songs – the drinking song often reflected real-life circumstances experienced by American immigrants.

In modern times, you can find evidence of its genetic make-up across new musical styles including rock n’ roll (Adam Sandler’s “That’s Your Beer”) and hip hop (“99 Problems” by Jay Z). This shows how subject matter concerning everything from mortality (“Death Rides A Pale Horse” by The Pogues) to love has been interpreted through various facets of drink culture over time: with our understanding of alcohol serving as not only literal vessels but figurative ones too.

We can gather evidence of its lasting power based on how frequently individuals postulate cultural questions today — like why do people drink? — which encourages us to examine past contexts from whence these activities derived from. It’s possible then that this time-honoured tradition will remain influential for decades to come given current interest levels in studying/understanding direct connections between a people’s rituals and customs through activities such as these. Thus, we can only hope that whenever music about alcohol continues to be made – however loosely associated – it will still represent an acclaiming critique against norms (directly or indirectly) that many populous societies have therefore grown up around; enriching our lifestyles today so significantly!

Modern Interpretations and Covers of What Do You Do With a Drunken Sailor

What Do You Do With a Drunken Sailor is an iconic sea shanty first popularized in the 19th century. This traditional song has been covered and reinterpreted by countless artists over the years. The lyrics, which tell of various actions to assist a drunken sailor back to shore, can be whimsical or rousing depending on the artist’s interpretation.

From classic renditions by Johnny Horton and Pete Seeger to modern interpretations from Flogging Molly and Mumford & Sons, What Do You Do With a Drunken Sailor continues to captivate audiences all around the world. Recent covers have combined traditional folk melodies with modern pop sounds making them more accessible to contemporary listeners.

Country star Kenny Chesney has also put his spin on the tune on his version recorded in 1994. Using a lighthearted approach he tastefully updated this traditional shanty with contemporary production including synthesizers and drum machines all while still remaining true to the original spirit of the song. His version was successful at crossing genre lines and gaining new audience members outside of country circles alike.

The Dropkick Murphys pay their homage to this classic tune with their brash rendition that packs quite a punch! Known for their lively sound driven by powerful percussion and gritty guitars they bring unbridled energy to their cover set in hyperactive garage-punk style that really gets listeners moving!

As we continue into the 21st century What Do You Do To A Drunken Sailor is finding its way into every culture around globe especially through adaptations for movie soundtracks such as masterfully arranged instrumental pieces composed for Disney’s Pirates Of The Caribbean movies series further growing its popularity outside of English speaking countries – capturing our hearts right up until today!

No matter who’s taking it on people just can’t seem get enough of this amazing sea shanty What Do You Do With a Drunken Sailor – no wonder why it continues not only as a part of maritime folklore but also inspiring so many different reinterpretations from country ballads, punk rock mayhem or orchestral overtures; keeping these ancient tunes alive for generations to come!

Concluding Thoughts on Exploring the Meaning Behind What Do You Do With a Drunken Sailor Lyrics

The traditional Naval song, “What Do You Do With a Drunken Sailor,” is an enduring tale of sailors and their love for strong drink. The engaging lyrics and catchy tune have led to its enduring popularity in pop culture and among seafaring people even today. While the song may seem simply comical on the surface, there are several ways to approach its hidden meanings; each interpretation offers insight into aspects of life at sea in centuries past.

When looked at through a lens of economics, the song is perhaps a lament over the high price of spirits for those who collected it and sold it to sailors in port towns. Such expensive goods often caused debt or made some captains reconsider when hiring crew members with expensive habits. As with many of sailor songs from this era, “What Do You Do With a Drunken Sailor” highlights how these economic challenges were a part of life on deck.

When looked at through an anthropological or cultural perspective, “What Do You Do With a Drunken Sailor” could be seen as an exploration of behaviors that were accepted or unaccepted by certain crews during specific times periods onboard ships or harbours portsides. The possible punishments being mentioned might even provide clues about how captains handled drunkenness onboardA closer look at such interpretations can uncover yet another layer behind this traditional Naval song’s wry humour and clever tale – one filled with individual perspectives set against universal truths about social expectations and tough economic reality for those who spent months away from home serving their country.

Finally, examining “What Do You Do With A Drunken Sailor” through a moralistic viewpoint reveals thoughts associated with the dangers of drinking too heavily, particularly volatile liquid foreign spirits found abroad overseas oceans which could easily impair judgement callings leading man overboard catastrophes rather than achieving mission objectives soused luck as sometimes played out particularly way back old salt voyages days before insulated safe capsizing’s quick scuttle sandings under new shipping regulations lower percentages alcohol levels legal sale store shore locations bottles caskets lads soul navigations aboard seas vessels tugboat dinghies’ wake windward foots midnaps Sunday slumber merry-time lifters like false buccaneers duel fiddlers book mate swaps while punishing some performances jail yard cells sails deflate embarking lists addition uprisings mutiny escape plans ransacked loot ship battles below poles perpetual darkness waters vice grips confused illusions ecstasy sorrow wins …!

In conclusion, what started as a seemingly simple drinking song quickly evolves into something more complex when analyzed further; each unique interpretation reveals different insights into history and culture surrounding seafaring life centuries ago—a timeless testament to the stories that can be told through song no matter if one takes away childish jollity merriment chuckles naughtiness banned brain treat toys swished cuppers heads jiggers spinning pieces scattered boards parts make whole place together smitten glee abundance pride joyous tears laughter lots …!

( No ratings yet )