The grey funnel line, Cyril Tawney 1959

Cyril Tawney wrote his song in 1959 and it has been published first on his LP "In Port" from 1972. The title The Grey Funnel Line is an euphemism for the Navy, equating the colour of its funnels with those of company emblems found on commercial shipping lines. The song echoes the boredom, loneliness, and longing for home that many may feel who work on modern vessels, be it naval or merchant marine.

As always, feedback is highly welcome...:-)


  • That's a lovely version. Nice clean picking and you sing it well.

    Enjoyed that!😀

  • Thank you Owen...:-)

  • I agree with Owen. Very nice performance.

    Despite your great performance, I can't say I'm a huge fan of the song itself. It seems to go on for a long time in the same way with only a very short break for a kind of refrain which doesn't do very much to add variety. I suppose you could say it certainly captures the boredom of life at sea 😊

    A lot of songs about ships seem to be this way. In my opinion (and I'm probably in the minority), the Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald is one of the most overrated songs ever written. Whenever I hear it, I find myself thinking, "For crying out loud, Gordon, give us a ******* chorus!"

  • Lovely song, and I am not familiar with, glad to hear this classic from you!

    Guitar accompaniment is excellent, and the vocals fits in perfectly, simply beautiful recording.

    Thanks for sharing.


  • Thx Rene, I'm always looking for new (old) songs that are not as well known, as they should be, in my humble opinion. But I like them because of the melody and the theme, just to bring them back to memory...:-)

  • ja, many older songs lack the use of a refrain simply to get more lines to tell a longer story and keep the total song not too long. Also, a good refrain is hard to write...:-)

  • Johnb68
    Johnb68 Reading PA

    I like this. It follows the style of old folk songs which some don't like but many do. I'm a child of the 60s so I've listened to many Peter, Paul & Mary records growing up. Some of Peter Yarrows solo songs sound in this style. I also like songs that are contemplative, as this clearly is.

    😀John B

  • Very smooth, with a nice vibe! I enjoyed your vocals, acoustic guitar playing, and the song itself. Nice cover!

  • StefPo
    StefPo Germany

    Thx for your kind words Icystorm, makes me proud...:-)

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