Train On the Island

Traditional | Roud 17376, Ballad Index ADR97

Lyrics:

Train on the island
Headed for the west
Go and tell my true love
The girl I love the best
Go and tell my true love
The girl I love the best

Go and tell my true love
The girl I love the best
Go and tell my true love
The girl I love the best

Train on the island
Thought I heard it blow
Run and find my true love
She don’t ride no more
Run and find my true love
She don’t ride no more

Run and find my true love
She don’t ride no more
Run and find my true love
She don’t ride no more

Train on the island
Thought I heard her squeal
Run and tell my true love
I can’t hold the wheel
Run and tell my true love
I can’t hold the wheel

Run and tell my true love
I can’t hold the wheel
Run and tell my true love
I can’t hold the wheel

Train on the island
Headed for the north
Go and tell my true love
She don’t know what she’s worth
Go and tell my true love
She don’t know what she’s worth

Go and tell my true love
She don’t know what she’s worth
Go and tell my true love
She don’t know what she’s worth

Additional Verses

Train on the island
listen to her squeal
Run and tell my true love
How happy I do feel
Run and tell my true love
How happy I do feel

The steam from the whistle
Smoke from the stack
Goin’ to catch that 5:18
I’m never comin’ back
Goin’ to catch that 5:18
I’m never comin’ back

Train on the island
Moaning mighty low
Go and tell my true love
As far as I can go
Go and tell my true love
As far as I can go

Train on the island
Since I’ve heard it blow
Go and tell my true love
I’m sick and I can’t go
Go and tell my true love
I’m sick and I can’t go

Featured On:
Old Time American Music

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About the Song:

“Train On the Island” is an Appalachian folk song with many melodies associated with it. The first commercial recording, played by John Preston Nestor (banjo) and Norman Edmonds (fiddle) on 8/1/1927 as a part of the famous Bristol Sessions in Tennessee, uses the melody of the fiddle tune “June Apple”. But as is the nature with many floating verse songs, other melodies were picked up and developed as the oral folk tradition took its course.