Fare thee well, now, Indiana, your green land has been good to me.
There I traveled, there I settled, there I raised up my family.
But the cord has never severed, and the longing each day it has grown.
So, tomorrow, I'll be leaving for the land that I call my home.
All my friends say that I'm crazy, going back to such poverty,
America is, so they say now, the land of opportunity.
But the shy hare runs so swiftly and the heron slowly flies.
These are treasures from my homeland that all your money can never buy.
As our ship lies in the harbor, I shall look back on your shore.
And I'll feel sadness that I'm leaving your green land forever more.
But as our ship lies on the ocean and each day we are out on the sea.
All the dreams I've had for years now, drawing nearer reality.
Repeat First Verse.
Posted to a forum on www.mudcat.org by Andy Mitchell, the song's author,
December 5, 2001:
Hi guys, First of all can I thank Christine Primrose for telling me, not
only about this discussion but for letting me know of this great website.
Incidentally she is the greatest singer I know and all her albums are in
the media of her native Gaelic tongue so check them out. They are on the
Temple label and I think Flying Fish does them in the States. Anyway,
about Indiana; I wrote the song and tune about 15 years ago. I was then
living in the village of Ullapool in the far north west of Scotland and my
best friends Tom and Val Brian had, quite a few years earlier, moved out to
Terre Haute, Indiana. I had missed them a lot and I was delighted to hear
from them that they decided to come back home to stay. They loved Indiana
but the "old calling" was too strong a force. I decided to write the song,
trying to seeing things from Tom & Val's point of view. I had never
recorded the song but when my mate Andy Irvine was singing in Ullapool, he
heard me sing it and "demanded" it from me. The oul Irish rascal did a
really beautiful version of it but changed it into an Irish song -actually,
I find it a great honour that someone makes my song their own. In musical
terms there's nothing stolen between Scots & Irish but a lot of sharing. A
couple of wee corrections though; Andy sings " and the shy hare runs so
swiftly" I wrote "And the red deer runs so freely". Actually, the latest
version of the song and my personal favourite has only recently been been
recorded by Dave Wilkie and Cowboy Celtic, "The Drover Road" CFA-008
Centerfire Music. Denise Withnell sings the song and has a divine voice.
Dave and Denise contacted me prior to recording and made sure that they
used my original words. Another great version is from Nancy Curtens from
Portland Oregon. And John D, I'm not from Oban, but what the hell, it,
close enough. Actually I'm from Balintore ( a wee Easter Ross Village),
lived in Ullapool for over 25 years and recently moved to the Isle of Skye.
My day job is repairing things on fishing boats and I've been intending to
do an album since we had big black round things with a wee hole in the
middle. I've just never got round to doing it but if anyone books me for a
wee tour in USA, then I'll do one overnight - Opportunist - moi - never.
Le durachd Andy Mitchell