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White Dress

[Dave Swarbrick]

Sandy Denny sings White Dress, which Swarb wrote for her, very neatly. Dave Mattacks plays drums on this song. It was released in 1975 on Fairport Convention’s album Rising for the Moon and as a single White Dress / Tears. It was later included in the cassette The Attic Tracks Vol. 1, on the Fairport Convention compilations Meet on the Ledge: The Classic Years 1967-1975 and Fiddlestix - The Best of Fairport 1972-1984, and on the 5CD Fledg’ling Sandy Denny anthology A Boxful of Treasures.

There is a short clip on YouTube of Sandy Denny singing White Dress at the London Weekend Show in 1975:

Vikki Clayton covered White Dress on It Suits Me Well.

Addendum by Paul Wright: “Another version of White Dress occurs on Ralph McTell’s album Slide Away the Screen (1979) with Ralph McTell, vocals and acoustic guitar; Simon Nicol, acoustic guitar; Jerry Donahue, electric guitar; Martin Jenner, steel guitar; John Mealing, electric piano; John Kirby, piano; Dave Pegg, bass; Dave Mattacks, drums. The verses were rewritten from a man’s viewpoint and credited to McTell/Swarbrick. This version was also played live at Broughton Castle by Fairport Convention in 1981.” A further recording of Ralph McTell singing White Dress accompanied by Dave Swarbrick from the 1992 BBC Ralph McTell Show is on the Dave Swarbrick anthology Swarb!.


Sandy Denny sings White Dress

Feel how the wind blows, December despair,
Bring me a ribbon to tie up my hair,
I’ll be your bride, go where you go,
All of my life, you’ll be my beau.

Chorus (repeated after each verse):
Kiss me and I might
Put on a white dress,
If you’ll take me dancing tonight.

The night’s in your face, sky’s in your eyes,
The day’s in my arms when you’re by my side,
Whenever you’re weary I’ll sing you a song,
Whenever you’re lonely I’ll show you you’re wrong.

Come from the window, let’s climb the stairs,
All of my sorrows are none of your cares;
While life is in us, let’s love all we can.
I’ll be your women, you’ll be my man.

Ralph McTell sings White Dress

Feel how the wind blows, December despair,
Bring me a ribbon, I’ll tie back your hair,
You sleep by my side, you’ve gone where I’ve gone
Don’t cling to the past, love, our time’s moving on.

Chorus (repeated after each verse):
Go and kiss me, it’s gonna be alright
If you put on the white dress,
And I’ll take you dancing tonight.

And all of my sorrow, they seem none of your care
Come from the window, tread soft on the stair
While life is in us, let’s love all we can.
I you’ll be my women then I’ll be your man.

If you felt weary I’ll sing you this song,
And if you felt lonely I’ll show you you’re wrong.
Night’s in your face but the sky’s in your eyes,
The morning’s before us, lets dance till sunrise.