John Riley

Public Domain


John Riley is a traditional English folk tune that has been recorded over the years by the likes of Joan Baez and Judy Collins, as well as The Byrds, which is where we first heard it. Jim originally performed this with one of his firs bands, J. McRae, which featured band mate youngbloods, Ron McCarty, Sean Rea and John Tomassetti. In a sense, this is an homage to those days and in that spirit. While we strove to keep it simple, we nevertheless were true to J. McRae's arrangement.


A fair young maid all in her garden,
A strange young man comes passing by
Saying fair maid, will you marry me
And this answer was her reply

No kind sir, I cannot marry thee
For I've a love who sails the deep blue sea
Though he's been gone near seven years
Still no man will I marry

Well what if he's in some battle slain
Or drowned in the deep salt sea
Or what if he's found another love
And he and his love both married be?

And if he's found another love
And he and his love both married be
Then I wish them health and happiness
Still no man shall marry me

He picked her up all in his arms
And kisses gave her one two and three
Saying weep no more my own true love
I am your long lost John Riley.

Keep in touch....

Send us a note and say hello!

Check us out...

YouTube -- Twitter -- Facebook --

Have a listen....