Paul James - vocals, saxophone. Emma Holbrook - drums. Fiona Barrow - violin. Joanne Wadeson - bass. Victor Nicholls - guitar, Ableton. 'The Ballad of Sarah Gray' is based on the English folk song 'William Taylor'. Recorded and filmed at Crescent Records, Swindon, England. 2023. Thanks Damon Sawyer, Simon Houlihan, Sam James.
I'll sing you a song about two young lovers,
Who from Lichfield town they came,
The young man's name was William Taylor,
The maiden’s name was Sarah Gray.
William Taylor, he enlisted,
For a soldier he has gone,
He’s gone and left his own true lover
For to sigh and for to mourn.
Sarah’s parents, they did despise her,
They filled her heart with grief and woe,
And then at last she vowed and told them
For a soldier she would go.
She's dressed herself in man's apparel.
Man's apparel she put on
To go and seek her own true lover,
For to find him she has gone.
One day as she was exercising,
Exercising with the rest,
A silver chain fell from her waistcoat
And exposed her lily-white breast.
The Sergeant Major he came up to her,
Asked of her what brought her here,
"I've come to seek my own true lover
Who has proved to me so dear".
If you've come to seek your own lover
Pray you tell to me his name
His name, it is Bold William Taylor
And from Lichfield town he came.
If his name is William Taylor,
William Taylor he’s not here,
He lately married a rich young lady
Worth ten thousand pound a year
If you rise early in the morning
Just before the break of day,
There you will see Bold William Taylor
Walking with his lady fair
She called out for sword and pistol
Sword and pistol she put on
She’s fired and shot bold William Taylor
With his bride at his right hand.