Unreleased Songs and Alternate Lyrics

Several songs by Richard or Mimi were never released, but probably existed as demos, since they are listed in the Library of Congress Copyright Database, and some of them were once available as sheet music.


"Ballad of Three Nasty Lovers" (c. April 1964)
An adaptation of the Child Ballad, "Two Sisters."

"Death Row"
A recording of "Death Row" was found among the Broadside Collection that Sis Cunningham bequeathed to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. A few lines of the song were printed in an article in The Independent:

If you're white you got some chance to beat this death row
If you're white you might get loose from off this death row
But a man that's partly black, partly dark chocolate brown
He ain't got an earthly chance to beat this death row.

"A Sailor's Song" (c. April 1964)
A lament for American soldiers shipped off to war, sung to the tune of "Foggy, Foggy Dew." This song was printed posthumously in the New York Broadside #70, May 1966, and in The Vietnam Songbook.

"Scarlet Town"
There is a recording of this song by English performer Jon Betmead, who credited the song to Richard Fariņa. Another English folkie, Roger Courtney also recorded this song, likewise crediting it to Fariņa. The song was never copyrighted by Fariņa, though there was a song by the same name copyrighted by jazz composer John Benson Brooks. It may have been a song Fariņa wrote while in England in 1962 or 1963. Due to the lack of evidence, I cannot classify this as a Fariņa song, but list it here only for reference.

"Sombre Winds" (c. February 1964)
A characteristically Fariņan song of yearning for love amid the rumbling of war. This was performed in the musical, Richard Fariņa: Long Time Coming and a Long Time Gone. The melody was derived from the traditional Scottish ballad "Tramps and Hawkers" (or "Come All Ye Tramps and Hawkers"), which was recorded by Alan Lomax for his World Library of Folk and Primitive Music series. "Tramps and Hawkers" has also been recorded by the Dubliners, Bert Jansch, and many others. Bob Dylan adapted the melody for "I Pity the Poor Immigrant."

"A Song for Some of Us" (lyrics by Richard, music by Pauline Marden) (c. April 1964)
This follow-up to the Fariņa-Marden hit "Pack Up Your Sorrows" has the same melody as Pauline's song "Tears in my Eyes," as recorded by Joan Baez on the album Very Early Joan.


"Birmingham Sunday"
The songbook Journey to Freedom: A Casebook with Music for a Free University prints an extra stanza credited to Pete Seeger:

I mind my own business
I watch my T.V.
Complain about taxes
but pay anyway
in a civilized manner
my fathers betray
who long ago struggled for freedom.
This stanza replaces the final "How many dark ships in the forest" stanza that Richard had retained from the original "I Once Loved a Lass" ballad.

"Good King Jubilee" (c. October 1964)
This title, listed in the Library of Congress copyright database, is simply another title for "Celebration for a Grey Day." "Good King Jubilee" seems to be a combination of "Good King Wencelas" and "Swing and Turn Jubilee," two of the tunes used in the medley. Evidently Richard and Mimi were still going by the earlier title in concert as late as January, 1965, after their first album was recorded (Fall '64) but before it was released (April '65).

"Xmas Island"
This blues throwaway from the Dick Fariņa & Eric von Schmidt album was retained in Richard & Mimi's live repertoire, accruing a few extra lines before it was overhauled and revamped into "One Way Ticket" (which in turn has an alternate title, "Leavin' California"). The extra lyrics of the intermediate version, printed below, are just as negligible as those on the Fariņa/von Schmidt LP:

Well, There's too much noise in London and there's problems down in Tennessee,
Hey, there's too much noise in London and there's problems down in Tennessee,
I'm gonna groove with all the presents, lie me down beneath the Christmas Tree.

Well its goodbye, baby, fare thee well, I'll see you round some day.
I said it's goodbye baby, fare the well, I'll see you round some day.
I got a jingle-bellin' mama and she's gonna take me all the way.

The vague, colorless "problems down in Tennessee" may be one of Fariņa's worst lines. Still, the restless deliberation between London and Tennessee points the way toward the "One Way Ticket" that we know and love today.


"Miles" with lyrics (c. 1966)
Mimi's lovely composition originally had lyrics. They were printed in the songbook The Now Sound of Folk Music. and credited to Richard and Mimi.

"Dandy Lion"
(words and music by Mimi, music by David Amram) (c. 1979)
A song about a performer friend of Mimi's who was consumed by his addictions, which he eventually managed to beat. It ended with: "Play it soft. Play It Loud. Then put a smile on the crowd."

"Mister Rudy"
(words and music by Mimi, music by Lowell Levinger (Banana)) (c. 1981)
A song about an apartment building doorman. This was a regular part of her live act.

"Of Love"
(words and music by Mimi, music by Gary Goodrow) (c. 1981)
I have no info on the song itself, except to note that Gary Woodrow was a member of the comedy troupe The Committee, which Mimi joined in 1966 or '67. You can see photos of Goodrow, Mimi, and the rest of The Committee on John Byrne Cooke's website.

"Feeling Left Behind"
(words and music by Mimi, music by Bill Amatneek) (c. 1980)
This is a song Mimi wrote while Bill Amatneek was in her back-up band. She had written the lyrics and melody, and Amatneek provided some jazz-style chord changes. Mimi later referred to this as "the new jazz direction for the new jazz Mimi."

Many other songs were apparently never copyright registered by Mimi, but fans who saw her in concert remember them. Some of the titles were:

"Come-Get-Me Shoes"
"Ruby, Woman of Easy Virtue"
"Free Entertainment on My TV"
"Oh Mama" (a homage to her mother, with a few autobiographical details)
"Sad Cities"
"Paranoia" (mentioned in a 1973 article; nobody seems to remember anything about this one)