Home 9 Composers 9 Earle Peach 9 BLACK FLY SONG

featuring the Cypress Studio Singers
This is a classic Canadian folk song. In Ontario construction workers battle black flies without relief! Earle’s arrangement is rollicking great fun!


’twas early in the spring when I decide to go
For to work up in the woods in north On-tar-i-o
The unemployment office said they’d send me through
To the little Abitibi with the survey crew

And the black fly, the little black fly
Always the black fly, no matter where you go
I’ll die with the black fly a-pickin’ my bones
In north On-tar-i-o-i-o, in north On-tar-i-o

Now the man, Black Toby was the captain of the crew
And he said, “I’m gonna tell you boys what we’re gonna do
They want to build a power dam and we must find a way
For to make the little ab flow around the other way”

So we survey to the east and we survey to the west
And we couldn’t make our minds up how to do it best
Little Ab, little Ab, what shall I do
For I’m all but goin’ crazy on the survey crew

It was black fly, black fly everywhere
A-crawlin’ in your whiskers, a-crawlin’ in your hair
A-swimmin’ in the soup, and a’swimmin in the tea
Oh the devil take the black fly and let me be

At last the job was over, black toby said, we’re through
With the little abitibi and the survey crew
’twas a wonderful experience and this i know
I’ll never go again to north Ontar-i-o


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SATB with piano – CP 1295

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SAB with piano – CP 1398

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SAB with piano – PDF – CP 1398

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SSA with piano – CP 1515

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SSA with piano – PDF – CP 1515

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Cypress makes rehearsal tracks for choirs –  here is a demo

Rehearsal Tracks  –  Black Fly Song

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