The Female Sailor jig

Also known as Female Saylor, The Female Saylor, La Matelote, March For The Sailors, Marche Pour Les Matelots, Masters In This Hall, Walk For The Sailors.

There are 2 recordings of this tune.

The Female Sailor has been added to 1 tune set.

The Female Sailor has been added to 7 tunebooks.

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Three settings

X: 1
T: The Female Sailor
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Gmin
D|:"Gm"G2d "D7"d2c|"Gm"B3 "Cm"c3|"D7"d2c B2A|"Gm"B2A "D7"G2F|
"Gm"G2d "D7"d2c|"Gm"B3 "Cm"c3|"D7"d2c B2A|1 "Gm"G3G2 D:|2 "Gm"G6||
|:"Gm"b2a "D7"g2^f|"Gm"g3 d3|b2a "D7"g2^f|"Gm"g3 "G7"d2f|"Cm"e2c "D7"d2A|
"Gm"B2G B2c|1 "D7"d2d ^f2f|"Gm"g3 "D7"a3:|2 "D7"d2d B2A|"Gm"G3G2 D||
X: 2
T: The Female Sailor
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Gdor
D|:"Gm" G2d d2c|B3 c3|d2c B2A|"D7" B2A G2^F|
"Gm" G2d d2c|"Cm" B3 c3|"D7" d2c B2A|"Gm" G6:|
|:"Gm" b2a g2^f|g3 d3|"Eb" b2a "Dm" g2^f|g3 d2f|"Cm" e2c "Dm" d2A|
"Gm" B3 B2c|1 "D7" d3 e2^f|g3 a3:|2 "D7" d3 A2A|"Gm" G6||
X: 3
T: The Female Sailor
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Emin
D|:"Em"E2B "B7"B2A|"Em"G3 "Am"A3|"B7"B2A G2F|"Em"G2F "B7"E2^D|
"Em"E2B "B7"B2A|"Em"G3 "Am"A3|"B7"B2A G2F|"Em"E6:|
|:"Em"g2f "B7"e2^d|"Em"e3 B3|"C"g2f "B7"e2^d|"Em"e3 "E7"B2d|"Am"c2A "B7"B2F|
"Em"G2E G2A|1 "B7"B3 ^c2d|"Em"e3 "B7"f3:|2 "B7"B2A G2F|"Em"E6||

Three comments

The Female Sailor

Stumbled upon this one in Deby Benton Grosjean’s album, Beyond the Shore. She plays it as a lead up to Crabs in the Skillet, which works beautifully.

A French piece, composed by Marin Marais (1656 - 1728) for the opera Alcyone (1706). In the early-1700’s the tune was adopted into the English Contra Dancing tradition. William Morris later made it a Christmas piece in the mid-1800’s.

Gmin is the original key. Gdor seems to be appropriate too (there’s only one E note, which could be both an Eb or an E note, although the E makes it easier for whistlers/flutists). Works in the other minor keys as well: Dmin/Ddor, Amin/Ador, Emin/Edor, etc. etc..

Similar to La Vieille Maclotte (

Re: The Female Sailor

I see it is listed under the alternative names, but I only know it as "Masters in this Hall", a Christmas carol, which is perhaps the William Morris arrangement you referred to.

Re: The Female Sailor

That’s right!