Mike kicked off with Outward bound. He challenged us to say why this shanty was not a shanty. The answer is that a shanty is either an outward bounder or a homeward bounder. A shantyman would not sing an outward bounder while homeward bound or vice versa but this song includes verses for both outward and homeward bound. In fact it would be sung for hauling while in port but a shanty was by definition a song to accompany work at sea. Hence, it is not really a shanty.
We were joined for a second time (the first having been in April) by Ed who is doing a tour of local folk clubs at the moment, publicising some gigs he will be doing shortly in Bristol (Ed is from Swindon). Ed sang four of his own songs: Hope is the name on its bow, Get a job and marry me, All down hill from there, and Mimi and I.
A loose theme emerged around law and order and "civil rights". Derek started off this section with Moreton Bay. Colin's offering was Tom Paxton's What a friend we have in Hoover and Ray added Black Jack County Chain.
Robin sang John Tams' version of Over the hills and far away, which even Mr Tams has apparently admitted is historically inaccurate, putting the events in the reign of the wrong monarch among other issues, according to Mike. That doesn't make it a bad song though and it's a good chance for everyone present to exercise their lungs.
Colin wins the prize for wishful thinking this week, singing Leaving of Liverpool while playing his guitar in a key only Mike could reach down to. Nevertheless, Colin continued manfully, singing in his boots to the end.
Canine pub regular, Scooby, was seen having fun early in the evening which led to Simon dedicating his most risqué song to him: Big Bamboo from the singing of the Jolly Boys.
Mike finished off the evening with John Conolly's Fiddler's Green, another great "joiner inner".
Here's a selection of these songs plus some others sung during the session.