THE TITANIC (IT WAS SAD WHEN THAT GREAT SHIP WENT DOWN) (as recorded by VERNON DALHART) (1920s)


Vernon Dalhart

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Check out LESLEY RIDDLE's variant and another (printed) variant of the same song.

Under his best-known pseudonym of Vernon Dalhart, Marion Try Slaughter achieved wide acclaim as America's most popular country recording artist in the middle 1920s. Some traditionalists dismiss Dalhart as a true old-time country artist because he did have some formal training and recorded popular material. Nonetheless few would deny that he had considerable influence in the country scene in his era....
From 1928 into the depression, Dalhart's popularity faded and by 1933 he had stopped recording altogether. In 1938, he did a final session in an unsuccessful comeback attempt....
He suffered heart attacks in 1948 and failed fast, dying on September 14 at the age of 65.
Ivan M. Tribe, liner notes, "Vernon Dalhart: Ballads and Railroad Songs" (Old Homestead OHCS 129, 1980).

Lyrics as recorded by Vernon Dalhart, 1920s; reissued on "Ballads and Railroad Songs" (OLD HOMESTEAD OHCS 129, 1980); transcribed by Manfred Helfert.

It was on one Monday morning,
Just about one o'clock,
When the great Titanic
Began to reel and rock.
Then the people began to cry, Sayin', "Lord, we're gonna die."
It was sad when that great ship went down.

Chorus:
It was sad when that great ship went down,
It was sad when that great ship went down.
There were husbands and wives,
Little children lost their lives.
It was sad when that great ship went down.
When they built the great Titanic,
They said what could they do,
They said they'd build a ship
That water could not go through.
But God with His mighty hand
Showed the world it could not stand.
It was sad when that great ship went down.

When they heard the signal ring
They were headed for the shore;
The rich folks they declared
They wouldn't flight with the poor.
Though they sent the poor below
They was cursed and had to go.
It was sad when that great ship went down.

When the people on the ship
Were a long way from home,
With the people all around them
Didn't know their time had come.
But Death came ridin' by,
Sixteen hundred had to die.
It was sad when that great ship went down.

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