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Sleeve Notes for The Navvy's Wife by The Navvy's Wife Cast

The Navvy's WifeA musical drama written by Mick Ryan which gives voice to those whose lives were shaped by the great drive to carve out Britainís canals, railways and roads.  

Thousands were caught up in the migration of able-bodied men to the vast scars of construction that have now softened into our landscape. Bonds forged by kinship, friendship, love and economic necessity helped them all survive the brutal realities of the hard life the men were drawn to. This itinerant way of life conferred hardship and uncertainty on the women caught up in it but of these mothers, lovers, wives and widows the newspapers had very little to say; of their longings, sorrows, hopes and joys they said nothing, nothing at all Ö

Mick Ryan (vocals)
Heather Bradford (vocals)
Paul Downes (vocals, harmony vocals, guitar, mando-cello, mandoline, banjo)
Judy Dunlop (vocals)
Jackie Oates (vocals, harmony vocals, five string fiddle-viola, shruti)
Roger Watson (vocals, harmony vocals, melodeon, concertina)


CD One

1. Men From Limerick (Mick) - Words Mick Ryan, Music Trad.
2. The Women's Song (Jackie, Judy, Heather)                                
3. My Paddy  (Jackie)                                          
4. Don't Forget  (Mick)                                            
5. Mammyís Poem  (Heather)
6. Farewell My Son (Heather)                                                      
7. My Paddy (part 2) (Jackie)
8. The Right Thing (Mick and Jackie)
9. Don't Forget (part 2) (Mick)
10. I Miss Him (Jackie)
11. The Railway Age  poem (Roger)
12. Brassey (Roger)
13. The Navvy's Wife (Judy) - Words Mick Ryan, Music Trad., adapted Mick Ryan
14. Women Not Their Wives (Judy, Jackie, Heather)
15. They All Hate  (The Cast)
16. The Eyes Have It (Paul, Judy)
17. Farewell (Judy)
18. Dangerous Enough  poem (Roger)
19. So Many Ways To Die (Roger)


1. Poppies (Mick, Judy)
2. The Journey  (Mick)
3. What Brought Paddy Over  poem (Mick)
4. We Get All Sorts (Heather)
5. Here Comes Mick (Paul)
6. Just Like You (Roger)
7. Something To Show (Mick)
8. The Journey (part 2) (Mick)
9. Wasn't He the Lucky One (Heather) - Words Mick Ryan, Music Trad.
10. Aren't We the Lucky Ones (Jackie, Judy, Heather)
11. The Land Around You (Mick, Roger)

Track Notes

1 Men from Limerick

See the Song Notes for the full track list

2 The Women's Song

Song by Jackie, Judy and Heather

18 Dangerous Enough

Poem read by Roger

19 So Many Ways to Die

Song by Roger

22 The Journey

Song by Mick

31 The Land Around You

Poem by Paul followed by a song