“Sing, Sally O!”


There are two versions, one a halyard and the other a capstan shanty. Characteristic refrain is "Sing Sally O, an' a fol-lol-de-day." The verses of the capstan version have a general whoring theme and are speaking to a "Mudder or Mammy Dinah."

Cross references

  • cf. "Hawl Away, Joe" (tune)
  • cf. "Sally Brown" (some verses)


  1. Colcord, p. 60, "Sing Sally O!" (1 text, 1 tune - 1 verse only, no choruses)
  2. Hugill, pp. 388-389, "Sing, Sally O!" (2 texts, 2 tunes) [AbEd, pp. 296-297]
  3. Sharp-EFC, XXXI, p. 36, "Sing, Sally O" (1 text, 1 tune)
  4. MHenry-Appalachians, p. 233, (second of four "Fragments from Maryland") (1 fragment, which I link to this on the basis of the mention of Mammy Dinah, though it might be anything)
  6. Roud #4699
  7. BI, Hugi288


Alternate titles: “Mudder Dinah”
Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1914 (Sharp-EFC)
Found in: West Indies Britain