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Sportsmen Arouse! / The Innocent Hare

[ Roud 1216 ; Ballad Index K251 ; trad.]

Sportsmen Arouse! is a song from the repertoire of the Copper Family. Bob and Ron Copper sang this song in a 1955 recording by Peter Kennedy. It was published on their EFDSS LP Traditional Songs from Rottingdean and later on their Topic CD Come Write Me Down. Bob, Ron and John Copper sang it on the 4LP Leader box set A Song for Every Season, and Bob, John, Jill and Lynne Copper and Jon Dudley sang it on Coppersongs: A Living Tradition.

The Young Tradition sang this song as The Innocent Hare on their eponymous debut album of 1966, The Young Tradition. They also sang it on November 17, 1968 at their concert at Oberlin College, Ohio, that was published in 2013 on their Fledg'ling CD Oberlin 1968. Their original album's liner notes commented:

A typical English hunting song, charming despite its bloodthirstiness. We learned it from the singing of Bob and Ron Copper, and it is probably closer to the Copper sound than anything else in our repertoire. Royston's bass line is not, however, the same as that used by the Coppers, and Heather's harmony is a definite addition to the Copper pattern. After hearing our arrangement described, Ron Copper said to us: “I've been telling Bob for years we should have a young lady sing with us!”

Lyrics

The Copper Family sing Sportsmen Arouse The Young Tradition sing The Innocent Hare

𝄆 Sportsmen arouse the morning is clear,
The larks are singing all in the air. 𝄇
𝄆 Go and tell your sweet lover the hounds are out, 𝄇
Saddle your horses, your saddles prepare,
We'll away to some cover to seek for a hare.

𝄆 Sportsmen arouse the morning is clear,
The larks are singing all in the air. 𝄇
𝄆 Go and tell your sweet lover the hounds are out, 𝄇
Saddle your horses, your saddles prepare,
We'll away to some cover to seek for a hare.

𝄆 We searched the woods and the groves all round,
The trial being over the game it is found, 𝄇
𝄆 Then off she springs through brake she flies, 𝄇
Follow, follow the musical horn,
Sing follow, hark, forward the innocent hare.

𝄆 We searched the woods, the groves all round,
The trial being over, the game is found, 𝄇
𝄆 Then off she springs through br she flies, 𝄇
Follow, follow the musical horn,
Sing follow, hark, forward the innocent hare.

𝄆 Our huntsman blows his joyful sound,
Tally ho, my boys, all over the downs. 𝄇
𝄆 From the woods to the valleys see how she creeps, 𝄇
Follow, follow the musical horn,
Sing follow, hark, forward the innocent hare.

𝄆 The huntsman blows his joyful sound,
Tally ho, my boys, all over the downs. 𝄇
𝄆 From the woods to the valleys see how she creeps, 𝄇
Follow, follow the musical horn,
Sing follow, hark, forward the innocent hare.

𝄆 All along the green turf she pants for breath
Our huntsman he shouts out for death. 𝄇
𝄆 Relope, relope, retiring hare. 𝄇
Follow, follow the musical horn
Sing follow, hark forward the innocent hare.

𝄆 All along the green turf she pants for breath,
The huntsman he cries out for death. 𝄇
𝄆 Elope, elope, retiring hare. 𝄇
Follow, follow the musical horn,
Sing follow, hark forward the innocent hare.

𝄆 This hare has led us a noble run
Success to sportsmen every one, 𝄇
𝄆 Such a chase she has led us, four hours or more, 𝄇
Wine and beer we'll drink without fear,
We'll drink a success to the innocent hare.

𝄆 This hare has led us a noble run,
Success to sportsmen every one, 𝄇
𝄆 Such a chase she has led us, four hours or more, 𝄇
Wine and beer we'll drink without fear,
We'll drink a success to the innocent hare.