Red Shirt

Red Shirt

katpiercemusic's picture



Liner Notes: 

I've been a bit absent the last couple of weeks. Burnout I think. I've decided that I'm not going for 50 this year. I know I can do it. I've done it like 5 years in a row. I want to focus on writing what I actually want to write and also doing other stuff. That being said... something I actually wanted to write. The story is old. I just turned it into a song.


Tis the tale of the Merry Wastrel I now relate to you
And of her gallant captain and brave intrepid crew
The cry came in the evening from high up in the nest
A brigand ship is bearing down upon us from the west
The crew was feeling nervous, but the captain stood alert
He said to his lieutenant "Bring me my crimson shirt,"
And once he was attired, he struck a fearsome pose
He led his crew victoriously against their worthy foe

Attend the captain... Heave Ho! Drop the sails... Heave Ho!
Fire the canons... Heave Ho! To victory we go! To victory we go!

It was but one day later when pirates struck again
Now with twice the ships and three times as many men
And though the odds were dismal, he proudly raised his head
And said "Lieutenant if you please, bring me my shirt of red."
Once more they were victorious much to the crew's surprise
They asked about his red shirt. He looked them in the eyes
"If ever I am wounded, the blood you will not see
"And you will fight on bravely and win your victory."

The crew stood there in silence, impressed by what they heard
His courage had inspired them to battle undeterred
The chance came in the morning. The lookout cried "retreat!
"I see them bearing down on us, a Spanish naval fleet!"
The crew stood at the ready. They howled their battle cry.
He gave them a salute and he looked them in the eye.
He faced impending danger with a determined frown
He said "If you would be so kind, bring me my trousers, brown!"

Please keep your comments respectful, honest, and constructive. Please focus on the song and not the demo.


billwhite51's picture

it took me a minute before i grasped the significance of the brown trousers. its a wonderful tale and you give it a rousing rendition. the writing is excellent and all the background voices give it an immediacy,

coolparadiso's picture

An old joke nicely shuffled around and turned into a very good song! You do these so well!

headfirstonly's picture

So much fun. Vibe for me is strongly reminiscent of both Mike Oldfield's "On horseback" and Jona Lewie's "Stop the cavalry" and them's cracking songs. As is this! The interjections are splendidly done and really add to the hilarity. And yes it's an old joke (last recycled by Ryan Reynolds in the opening of the first Deadpool movie, I seem to recall...) but as they say, the old jokes are the best.

But as an inveterate Star Trek nerd, I was actually more surprised by the fact that the Captain survived the first verse...

ductapeguy's picture

That is a great old joke, extremely well told in this song.

kenmattsson's picture

This has so many filk vibes to me. More of a Fo'c'sle than a shanty (that would be a work song). Very funny and really well written and presented well.

OdilonGreen's picture

Ha! Very funny, and also oddly profound! Biggrin (Also, when I saw the title and then saw it was a sea shanty, I at first assumed it was going to be an olde-time reworking of the Star Trek “red shirt” trope; show’s my frame of reference, I guess! Wink )