Swampscott Shanty

Knowledge of the ocean isn’t one of my strengths. Nor is the singing of a sea shanty. But I do have a fondness for both.

When some aficionados of this art form of song got together remotely and produced sheer magic, I found that I couldn’t get enough.

If I could go back in time and explain to my MTV-watching self about the power of these songs, I’m sure there’d be some laughter.

Yesterday I was doing some work on a picture from a long-ago session in Swampscott, Massachusetts when my playlist dished up a shanty. This New England village is the kind of place where it seems everyone has a boat or is working on one as was the case for my subject.

After spending some time thinking about music and the sea, I decided to see if there were any sea songs about Swampscott. There were none to be found but I did learn that it’s the hometown of Barry Goudreau of Boston and David Lee Roth of Van Halen.

Maybe a couple of hundred years from now some young singers will unearth the gems from those fellows.

About the author: I am Stephen Kennedy, an experienced photographer with more than 2500 completed sessions in all 50 US states.

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