The Song of Sailor Martin

May 7, 2008 9:45 PM

The theme song for Sailor Martin, my pierced and tattooed ventriloquist dummy, a melancholy Hawaiian number about a hut on the beach occupied by a certain drunken sailor with a large number of naughty tales to tell.

Up until now, I've been creating these songs by scouring the internet for MP3s of 78 RPM records that are in the public domain, but, in this instance, I actually went out and purchased a 78 at the wonderful Vintage Music Company in South Minneapolis, near the intersection of Cedar Avenue and 38th Street. The record is called "Ua Like - Noa Like," and was recorded by Ferera's Hawaiian Instrumental Quartet for Columbia Records. Near as I can tell, the record was released sometime around 1917.

I played the 78 on a record plater I own that comes with a USB cable and imported it into my computer using Audacity, which I then used to clean up the sound file, following that with two programs, ClickRepair and DeNoise, to remove some of the scratches and surface noise. I then imported this sound file into Garage Band. I recorded original lyrics onto my Casio Exilim digital camera by singing while filming myself in digital video mode, stripped the sound file off the video in Quicktime, and then cleaned the file up a little in Audacity. Then I combined them all in Garage Band. The lyrics are as follows:


On an island paradise is Sailor Martin
In a hut upon the beach; old and spartan
Let's go see him, you and me, bring the rum now
He'll tell us tales of the sea; won't you come now?

Sailor Martin, o Sailor Martin
The sea call you by your name
While you are sleeping
And the ocean it knows
The secrets you're keeping
Tales whispered from Moscow to Beijing

How many women have there been? Can you name them?
How many sins did you commit? Will you claim them?
What's in your cup, Martin, o can I pour some?
As you tell us ribald tales of exotic foursomes.

Sailor Martin, o Sailor Martin
There's a tale in every empty rum drink
He's got stories so won't you please come drink
On an island paradise

posted by Astro Zombie (3 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

Bravo! I'm a big fan.
posted by umbĂș at 3:37 PM on May 8, 2008

Hooray for Sailor Martin! I got the next round o' rum-punch.
posted by snsranch at 1:12 PM on May 9, 2008

Bravo on hunting down the physical 78! Somehow that seems more "authentic," although I'm not sure why, or even what that means. But it's pretty cool.

Also it is awesome that you record your vocals with a camera.

This is sweet.
posted by Karlos the Jackal at 1:06 AM on May 11, 2008

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