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Our Queen up the River

Our Queen up the river, song / John Shields, singing in English

Our Queen up the river, song / John Shields, singing in English

Our Queen up the river
With your yah! yah! yah!
Our Queen up the river
With your yah! yah! yah!
Our Queen up the river
And she’ll be up there for ever
With your yah! yah!
Yah! yah! yah!

Db Item 099I Musictr
Db Item 099I Musictr

© 

Notes from Hugh Shields

In this rendition “up” was omitted in bar 6 with loss of half a beat, though included in Hugh Shields’s 1964 recording of the same song. The Belfast May queen songs are little known, and the custom now appears extinct; see JT Steele in Ulster Folklife 17 (1971:28). The “queens” dressed up in crepe paper—sometimes called “queen’s paper”—or old finery and paraded the streets with their followers. The songs assert superiority over rival groups; lesser queens might be routed unceremoniously as “Our queen won” from this collection indicates.