Leaving Friday Harbor (John McCusker)

  1. Martin Jonas
    Martin Jonas
    "Leaving Friday Harbor" is a slow air in waltz time written by John McCusker, which appeared originally on the 1999 album of the same name by the Battlefield Band. It's often (wrongly) spelled the British way, "Harbour". However, the tune is named after the town of Friday Harbor on San Juan Island in Washington State.

    For my recording on mandolin, mandocello and tenor guitar, I have used the first transcription on thesession.org -- note the dropped beats in the A part!


    X: 1
    T: Leaving Friday Harbour
    R: waltz
    M: 3/4
    L: 1/8
    K: Dmaj
    A2 |"D"f4 ed|[M:2/4]"D/C#"ef "G/B"A2 |[M:3/4]"D" f3f ed |"G/B"ef "D"a3f |
    "G"(3ggg gf ed|"Gmaj7"ef B4|"Em7".d2 dcde|"A7"c/2d/2c BA"/C#"de|
    "D"f4 ed|[M:2/4]"D/C#"ef"G/B"A2 |[M:3/4]"D"f3f ed|"G/B"ef "D"a3f |
    "G"(3ggg gf ed|"Gmaj7"ef B3d|"A7"c/2d/2c BA"/C#"ef |"D"d4 :|
    |: dc|"A7"c2 Ac"/C#"eg|"Dalt"gf a3f|"G"g2 B3g|"D"gf ef d/2e/2f|
    "G"g2 B3g|"D"gf ef df|"Em"e2 B2 ef|"G" ed- dc BA|
    [1 "A7"c2 Ac"/C#"eg|"Dalt"gf a3f|"G"g2 B3g|"D" gf ef dc|
    "G"B2 GB B/2c/2d|"D"Ad f3a|"A7"ge cA"/C#"ef|"D" d4 :|
    [2 "D" f4 ed |[M:2/4]"D/C#" ef "G/B" A2 |[M:3/4]"D"f3f ed|"G/B" ef "D" a3f|
    "G"(3ggg gf ed|"Gmaj7"ef B3d|"A7"c/2d/2c BA"/C#"ef |"D" d4||

    1921 Gibson Ajr mandolin
    Suzuki MC-815 mandocello
    Vintage Viaten tenor guitar

  2. crisscross
    Nice recording Martin. You seem to have a rather large chord vocabulary on the tenor guitar.
  3. Simon DS
    Simon DS
    Nicely played Martin.
    However I did check wiki for info on San Juan Islands.
    And if you have a gander at wiki you’ll notice that Friday ‘Harbo(u)r’ is actually on the map, clear enough.
    What’s not clear though is the spelling. It’s perhaps because of the picture quality that the spelling for ‘Harbo(o)r’ is out of focus.

    By chance? I think not. The author obviously isn’t sure about the spelling. The collection of islands are on the border of at least two nations, and were named by someone from yet another perhaps fourth nation.
    This confusion along with the often strange prononciations. After all, the word ‘harbo(u)r’ has only one ‘r’’.

    It reminds me of the capital city of La France.
    How many times have I heard people, ignorant people, pronounce it with an ‘s’ at the end?
    Yours, Outraged.
  4. Martin Jonas
    Martin Jonas
    Thanks, both!

    As to spelling (of the tune at least), I would think the definitive answer is the name used by John McCusker himself for the original recording: both the tune and the album it first appeared on are spelled "Leaving Friday Harbor":


    I had never heard of them before, but the San Juan Islands do look a fascinating place!

  5. Simon DS
    Simon DS
    Looks like a great place to visit, winter mean temps in upper 30’s, not bad.
    I did very nearly go up there when I was living in California.
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