Wednesday 30 April 2008

Joe Dobler's Marietta rowing yawl

One of the big drawbacks of Cornish pilot gig racing is the cost of the boats, which are traditionally-built of elm on oak. The bill is likely to be well north of £15,000 plus the oars, trailer, cover and so on.
Which makes the late Joe Dobler's design for a 23ft 6in pulling boat, the Marietta Yawl, particularly attractive for coastal rowing clubs on tight budgets.
Dobler designed it for a club in Marietta, Ohio, that wanted to give schoolkids that could not afford access to racing shells the chance to row. Apparently, the term yawl was used to describe the workboats carried by Mississippi steamboats.
Dobler redesigned the yawl for stitch and glue plywood construction, creating a very light but strong structure. The flat bottom makes it very easy to build, the idea being that schoolkids could build their own boats as projects, then race them.
The standard crew is four rowers and a cox, but it could have up to four scullers or even, I suppose, the Cornish ran-dan of two oarsmen and two scullers.
The design shows thole pins and oars with round looms, but if square rowlocks were fitted a club could get a set of wooden oars cheap from a rowing club that had converted to kevlar. This would have the added advantage that the children could be taught to feather their oar, making it easier for them to transfer to shells if they wanted to take up rowing seriously.
It is a great looking boat. With offshore rowing getting very popular here in the UK, we could do with a boat that is fun to row and race but simple and cheap to build, and safe and stable in waters such as the Solent.
The plans are available on Duckworks, which has lots of photos of the boat in action as well.

Saturday 26 April 2008

Rowing boats on eBay

The pretty antique rowing shell on eBay sold for an outstanding £720 after intense last-minute bidding. Does the buyer want to row it or hang it from the ceiling of a riverside restaurant? If anybody knows, do drop me a line.
The sale is a big contrast with this new 12ft skiff, still awaiting its first bid with less than a day to go. It looks very nicely made but not special. It is significant that the opening bid is a whopping £500. The seller of the old sliding seat boat had the courage to set the starting bid at £1 with no reserve, and it clearly sparked interest that led to a good result.
Brian Pearson was one of the interested parties (though not to the extent of 720 smackers). He notes:
"Hi Chris - yes, I always thought it was very special and am pleased it was valued by the bidders - good old eBay. I had a bike for sale on a cycling website, no takers and some enquiries saying my price was wrong. Began to believe them and would have taken a low offer after a month unsold on the site. So I put her on eBay, at my minimum with no reserve, and no bids for 6 days. Last few hours the bidding started and I sold her for more than I had her advertised on the bike website. I have had another chap get in touch about a Sprite [rowing skiff]. Again 10 years old, little used and wants a £1000. A new kit is about £770 so I do not understand.
That's the power of eBay - the free market establishes the real price without distortion by seller greed or buyer tightfistedness. The best strategy when selling on eBay is clearly to put it to buyers with the lowest starting price you can live with - and wait for the market to speak. If the selling price is less than you hoped, then you were deluding yourself and it is time you came out of denial.
The seller of the Cornish pulling boat Henry has a realistic starting bid, which has already been matched. The boat looks lovely but there is a catch: it is in desparate need of restoration.
Built sometime between the wars, Henry is 14ft long, carvel built, and was apparently used as the harbourmaster's boat at Fowey in the 1990s.
The owner is frank about some rot and a hole, but this is the sort of boat that needs detailed examination before committing actual folding money. Bidding stands at sixty quid - it will be very interesting to see how far it goes. It would be nice to see it restored. It would suit Chichester Harbour very well, but I personally would rather build a new one rather than spend a lot more money and effort restoring a time-expired hull. Old boats are like old cars, lovely to look at but hell to own.
UPDATE Sunday: The rowing boat Kingfisher sold with a last minute bid at the starting price of £500. Impossible to tell if setting a lower starting price would have set of a bidding war that would have sent the selling price higher, or if the high initial price meant the sole bidder didn't get a rock-bottom bargain. Anyway, a good result.

Friday 25 April 2008

Watery holidays

James writes to say he and a two friends are planning to do the Three Men in a Boat thing, courtesy of Thames Skiff Hire that I mentioned in an article I wrote for The Times a while back. He says:
"I'd be interested to read the rest of your published article if it's posted? Myself and two friends are paying homage to JKJ thanks to Thames Skiff Hire... keep an eye on and in just over a month I'll let you know how it goes!
Nice blog.
The rest of the article was about non-rowing but fun activities such as narrowboating and coasteering so I didn't include that in the original post, but as you ask, here is the full text:

Britain is blessed with an abundance of water for playing on, in and around. Nowhere is far from a coast, river or lake offering every kind of boating from laid-back cruising on the canals to the exhilaration of white water rafting.
But nothing is more ingrained in the British psyche than rowing on the Thames, implanted as small children by reading Wind in the Willows and later by Three Men in a Boat. Not to mention the Eton Boating Song.
Tom Balm of Thames Skiff Hire in Walton on Thames takes old rowing skiffs and restores them into symphonies of varnished mahogany, bronze and canvas. Then he rather generously allows us to play at being Ratty or Jerome K Jerome in them.
You can start and finish anywhere along the river - he will deliver the boat to one of 30 and collect from another one so you can row downstream only if you feel lazy. Four people can fit in a boat, but only three can sleep so one will have to put a tent up on the bank. Cooking equipment is provided, including that essential tin opener.
If boating on the Thames evokes the gentler pace of a bygone age, then white water rafting on the Tay in Perthshire offers a total adrenaline rush. Basically, the sport involves strapping yourself into what is effectively a large inflated truck tire and throwing yourself down streams that go terrifyingly downhill. It’s great.
The river has some of the finest stretches of white water anywhere, including the terrifying Orchy and Braan. Dunolly Adventure Outdoors runs rafting trips throughout the year, supplying everything from wet suit to helmet. Every trip starts with a safety session including instruction on paddle strokes. For those who want more, families can stay and the centre and indulge in canoeing, mountain biking and other activities.
On the face of it, the latest extreme sport, ‘coasteering’, is just as alarming - a sort of combination of rock climbing, diving, surfing – but children have always explored the rocks and pools around the beaches where their parents lie like beached whales in the sun. Picture shows coasteering in Cornwall with
Coasteering was developed on Britain’s only coastal National Park in Pembrokeshire, pioneered by local activity holiday firm TYF Adventure. The concept could not be simpler – don a wetsuit, helmet and an old pair of trainers (don’t expect to use them again), and scramble up the rocks. Trained instructors will show you places where you can throw yourself into the sea without too much risk of killing yourself, and every chance of thoroughly enjoying the experience. There are caves to be explored, seals to watch and waves to bodysurf in.
Trips are graded for ages from eight upwards, and you don’t even have to be able to swim though confidence around water is desirable. TYF also offers sea kayaking and surfing, as well as operating the only fully organic hotel in Wales in a converted windmill near St Davids.
Coasteering may be the latest thing, but the popularity of sailing has soared since Britain’s recent Olympic successes.
One of the best places to learn how is on the protected water of Chichester Harbour on the South Coast. It’s one of the prettiest too, and Cobnor Activities Centre is at its heart.
A charitable foundation, Cobnor is an RYA training centre, operating a fleet of boats from Toppers to Visions. Pictures show the Home-Built Boat Regatta at Cobnor last year.
Children can attend sailing camps which concentrate on improving RYA skill levels, or activity camps with a variety of other activities such as canoeing, climbing, archery and walks in the South Downs. Accommodation is either under canvas or in log cabins.
Suggest to the kids that they might enjoy a holiday in Birmingham and they may be sceptical. Tell them you will be cruising round some of the loveliest canals in Britain and they could be converted. A huge regeneration scheme has transformed the centre of the canal system round Gas Street Basin into a thriving area with pubs, clubs, an arena and lots for kids to do. But it is its position at the centre of numerous ‘ring’ routes that make it an ideal jumping off point for a canal holiday. Brightly painted narrowboats throng the old wharves and new marinas, and many can be hired as luxury floating holiday homes. Getting from the glitz of Gas Street to the rural peace of Staffordshire or Worcestershire does involve motoring through some very drab suburbs, but it is worth it. There is nothing more relaxing than steering a narrowboat along a winding canal, having sent the kids running ahead to prepare the lock for your arrival. You relax and they tire themselves out – a recipe for a happy holiday.

Thames Skiff Hire 01932 232433
Dunolly Adventure Outdoors 01887 820298
TYF Adventure 01437 721611
Cobnor Activities Centre 01243 572791
Canal Holidays UK 0845 226 2485

Sunday 20 April 2008

Antique sculling shell on eBay

This lovely sculling shell is on eBay, bidding currently over £100 and the auction still has five days to go.
The boat is 21ft long, clinker built (I think) and apparently still rowable. Its age is unknown, though I would say she looks pre-war or even older. It is exactly the sort of boat Mr Toad would have had, until he abandoned rowing for the gypsy caravan.

Saturday 19 April 2008

Amble up the Hamble

Rowed up the Hamble from Swanwick to the Horse and Jockey at Curbridge with members of the Dinghy Cruising Association today, and, since you ask, it was grey, cold and occasionally damp. I had the best of it really, as rowing keeps you warm and builds up an appetite even for British pub food.
Alistair Law brought his Paradox Little Jim and demonstrated how to use the yuloh, or Chinese oar. Apparently it is easy as long as you practice for a few hours right at the beginning, rather than leave learning the skill until you need to negotiate a crowded harbour in a brisk wind. Al relies on his a lot, as his outboard is stowed forward rather than hung off the transom where it gets in the way.
Liz Baker had outboard trouble so had to row, something that sailors hate, and was very late for lunch as a result. Al and I were coming back downstream when we met her, Liz's crew manfully (womanfully?) wielding the oars. That's Al in the background, having set sail.

Thursday 17 April 2008

A Sculler's Grave

In my post about the tomb of Robert Coombes, the great Thames sculler, I described four 'guardians' round the tomb, dressed in various waterman's costumes. Well, I failed to spot that they are all, in fact, the same man, as a note in my inbox pointed out:
"Dear Chris, I really enjoyed what you wrote about my great great great grandfather, but I would like to put you right about the "four guardians" - they are Robert Coombes himself.
Kindest regards
Alison Gibbens"

Many thanks, Alison. Of course, identification would be much easier if the heads could be replaced - restoration of this great monument is long overdue.
There is a similarly adulatory monument in Woolwich churchyard to Tom Cribb, Champion Pugilist of England (1781-1848). It is a stone lion with his paw resting on an urn, with the great boxer's championship belt draped over it. Cribb's funeral was one of the biggest ever seen in London.
Both these monuments are relics of a time when sportsmen may have been worshipped but were actually proxies for noble patrons who could not compete in person for reasons of status and class. As soon as social attitudes changed and the upper classes could compete as long as they didn't do it for a living, amateur athletics displaced professional sport almost completely.

The picture of Tom Cribb's lion comes from "The Black Diamond", Alan Bartlet's website devoted to the boxer.

Tuesday 15 April 2008

A new rowing boat design

It's great to find messages like this in the inbox:

Just a quick note to say thanks for putting in all the effort it takes to keep this blog going, I only discovered it about a month ago and am now a regular.
Enclosed are some pics of my rowing boat. I designed and built her over the winter 2006/7 so she’s not a new launching. The idea is a safe coastal rowing boat, taking inspirations from John Welsford’s Joansa, Bolger’s Light Dory and Paul Garside’s flash boat specifically, plus ideas from a few others in John Gardener’s excellent Building Classic Small Craft.
I live in Bursledon so I wanted to be able to row out into the Solent which can be choppy and has the additional hazards of very heavy motor boat wash. The design process was very enjoyable and pretty straightforward. Starting with rough lines, I built a half model – thanks go to Sam Devlin for his chapter on making chine models (Devlin’s Boatbuilding) it's really easy to go from drawing to half model which gives a much better feel for the design.
With some adjustments I proceeded to a full model in 1mm ply which was built stitch and glue (fuse wire and superglue) to prove the construction and panel shapes. With spreadsheets even Stimpson’s rule calculations are pretty quick and easy, but I have to say I didn’t bother with this one. We did “tank test” the model in the bath, weighted with coins to see how she tracked and how it responded to “waves” – all very unscientific but it did give me some confidence we were on the right track.
Construction is 4mm ply with 9mm for transom and frames, the gunnels are some cheap pine, she went together very easily the 6 panels stitched up, transom fitted and a couple of cross braces to form the shape while the first epoxy tapes were put in. Once the hull was reasonably stable frames were measured and fitted accurately as were stern and stem compartments, breast hooks etc.
Finish is painted in workboat tradition (I have enough varnishing to do on my other two boats). The build came in pretty light as intended (under 100lbs) and she floats pretty much as intended with one person rowing, if a little tender initially. I wheel her down from our house to Swanwick hard on the launching trolley (about 400 yards) so the light weight is important, especially going home after a long row. Two up or with a small load she’s very stable. Rowing long distances is easy and relaxing. All in all I’m pretty pleased with her.
The picture above is launch day of Swanwick Hard. I’ve since moved the seat forward 3” which trims the bows down slightly and increases directional stability. In windy conditions I carry a 5 litre water container forward to keep her tracking (advice from John Welsford – apparently its a dory quirk).
I guess we ought to think about joining the HBBR, the trouble is fitting everything in. If you or any of the members are planning to an outing to Bursledon or the Hamble please drop me an email it would be nice to row in company.
Max Taylor"
And so you shall! The Dinghy Cruising Association is cruising up the Hamble this weekend, and several Home Built Boat Regatta members will be there, including me (weather permitting!). Organization is flexible (some say non-existent) but the group will be foregathering at Swanwick Hard at about 10.00hrs on Saturday, heading upriver to the Horse and Jockey at Curbridge for lunch. The group will meet in the evening in the Jolly Sailor in Bursledon. Sunday will probably be spent out in Southampton Water.

Pilot Gig Newquay back on the water

The oldest rowing boat still in use, the pilot gig Newqay, was launched over the weekend after restoration by Ralph Bird. She was built in 1812, the year Charles Dickens was born and Napoleon invaded Russia. Details at

Monday 14 April 2008

Thole pins

Ben Crawshaw at The Invisible Workshop has posted a series of pictures of thole pins that are a feature of the traditional Spanish fishing boat, the llaut (pronounced ya-oot, Ben considerately explains). They also feature splendidly irregular oar rests made from stripped olive branches.
I'm not sure about thole pins. They have the virtues of simplicity and strength, but you can't feather the oars and there is a risk an oar might come off the pin while trying to steady the boat where a properly-sized oarlock would keep it in place.

Sunday 13 April 2008

Spring is sprung

The evenings are drawing out, making rowing on neap tides a comfortable possibility again. I put in at Prinsted and had a brisk row down channel. On the way I spotted a smashing classic yacht, Siona of Fyne (above), and the beautifully-restored Scottish fishing boat Ocean Pearl (a small zulu skiff, or possibly a fifie, I believe).
There were signs of activity all down the channel. Buoys that had been vacant since October were occupied, and owners were working to get them ready for the season. One unfortunate guy was stuck up a very tall mast doing some vital repair, something which I would only do at pistol point.
The pictures were taken with an HTC smartphone, which is only 2 megapixels so I think the results were surprisingly good.
Back at Prinsted hard, someone had put two gloves (not a pair) and a backpack that children had left, making the fingerpost into a sort of spring snowman.

Saturday 12 April 2008

A model gun punt

Gary Spratling in Australia has kindly sent pictures of a lovely model of a duck punt his father used in the middle of the last century. It gives a great idea of the size of the gun, which must have delivered a hell of a kick when fired. Gary makes the point that the number of yachts on moorings nowadays must make it very difficult for puntgunners, and the recent spate of waterside developments must have made it even worse. The top end of Portsmouth Harbour now has a very ritzy marina where wildfowlers used to stalk their prey. Firing the gun in the wrong direction could gouge a lot of expensive gelcoat these days.
Gary writes:
"Hi Chris, further to your note on duck punts this is a model that my father built of our duck punt, which was used on Portsmouth Harbour during the 50's and early 60's . By the time I was old enough to take the punt out myself, I don't think any punt gunning was taking place. Even then, the harbour was starting to fill up with moored yachts. I believe the duck shooting took place further up the harbour past Portchester towards Fareham. They also towed punts round to Southampton Water and the Beaulieu River.

Friday 11 April 2008

A la rowing du temps perdu

The Musee de la Marine in Paris has a delightful collection of tinplate toy boats, including this lovely clockwork rowing boat, made in Paris about 1900. A lad in his straw hat rows strenuously to impress the girl with the parasol - a timeless image.

The collection was exhibited in Paris last year, and is now on show at the Australian National Maritime Museum in Sydney until August. For those of us who unfortunate enough not to be able to make it in person, there is a virtual gallery, which kicks off with a somewhat bizarre picture of the Round Pond in Kensington, London, completely drained of water, revealing a Davey Jones' locker of sunken toy boats on the muddy bottom.

Thursday 10 April 2008

Mark Twain at Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe, on the California-Nevada border, has a new building for its Maritime Museum, opening next month. It looks really nice, but doesn't seem to have any rowing boats in it, judging by the website. This is a particular pity as the first recorded rowing boat on the lake was steered by none other than Mark Twain, who was a reporter on a newspaper in nearby Virginia City. He and a friend went to the lake to stake out a land claim, borrowing a flat-bottomed boat, tools and provisions from a cache left by the Brigade boys (what the Brigade was I am not sure).
His description of his first visit to Lake Tahoe is a peach:
"At last the Lake burst upon us -- a noble sheet of blue water lifted six thousand three hundred feet above the level of the sea, and walled in by a rim of snow-clad mountain peaks that towered aloft full three thousand feet higher still! It was a vast oval, and one would have to use up eighty or a hundred good miles in traveling around it. As it lay there with the shadows of the mountains brilliantly photographed upon its still surface I thought it must surely be the fairest picture the whole earth affords.
We found the small skiff belonging to the Brigade boys, and without loss of time set out across a deep bend of the lake toward the landmarks that signified the locality of the camp. I got Johnny to row -- not because I mind exertion myself, but because it makes me sick to ride backwards when I am at work. But I steered. A three-mile pull brought us to the camp just as the night fell, and we stepped ashore very tired and wolfishly hungry.In a "cache" among the rocks we found the provisions and the cooking utensils, and then, all fatigued as I was, I sat down on a boulder and superintended while Johnny gathered wood and cooked supper. Many a man who had gone through what I had, would have wanted to rest.
It was a delicious supper -- hot bread, fried bacon, and black coffee. It was a delicious solitude we were in, too. Three miles away was a saw-mill and some workmen, but there were not fifteen other human beings throughout the wide circumference of the lake.
As the darkness closed down and the stars came out and spangled the great mirror with jewels, we smoked meditatively in the solemn hush and forgot our troubles and our pains. In due time we spread our blankets in the warm sand between two large boulders and soon feel asleep, careless of the procession of ants that passed in through rents in our clothing and explored our persons.
Nothing could disturb the sleep that fettered us, for it had been fairly earned, and if our consciences had any sins on them they had to adjourn court for that night, any way. The wind rose just as we were losing consciousness, and we were lulled to sleep by the beating of the surf upon the shore."

(from Roughing It, 1872)

Wednesday 9 April 2008

Keith Shackleton and duck punts

Owen Sinclair writes from New Zealand:
"Recently I bought a book by British artist, Keith Shackleton, published in 1954 and titled ' Wake.' It is full of lovely drawings and reproductions of paintings, mostly of small boats of the era, coupled with brief, informative essays. Gunning punts feature in Chapter 12; the 2 black and white drawings and one painting showing a craft of more elegant form than the one in your photos, which appears to have been compromised for outboard power.
Oral legend in my family says that when they emigrated from Orkney in 1857 they brought with them a small cannon which was bolted to the front of a boat and rowed or possibly punted out on to Lake Waihola, south of Dunedin, New Zealand. The lake is shallow and largely surrounded by swamp, even more so in those days presumably. The cannon was loaded with shrapnel and the record for one shot was said to be 102 birds. Sounds hideous in these conservation-minded times, but I am sure that the catch would have been distributed around the district and the surplus smoked or salted. The cannon, sadly, is nowhere to be found today.
I recall seeing somewhere a photo of something called a punt gun, which was a multiple-barrelled device, the barrels splayed outward from a central point and presumably ignited readily at that point. The field of fire must have rendered this a devastating weapon. I can't recall the origin. Shackleton's drawing shows a gun with a single, very long barrel.
Feel free to excerpt any of this for your comments section.
Keep up the good work.
Owen Sinclair"
Coincidentally, Wildside Books and Art in Great Malvern have a wonderful picture by Keith Shackleton of a wildfowler and his punt, complete with gun. It is grey winter's afternoon and the fowler is carrying his catch back to his boat, knee deep in his waders with a handful of game in either fist. The artist's note reads 'It was an afternoon with gently drifting sea mist and a moon-rise before sundown."
The picture is priced at £2,200 - I must start saving. The book, Wake, is available on alibris at prices from £20 up.

Tuesday 8 April 2008

Chopstick canoe

Shuhei Ogawara, a Japanese local authority bureaucrat, has made a canoe out of 7,382 chopsticks discarded in the canteen at work over two years. Coated with polywester resin, it weighs in at a heavyish 30kg (66lb). Ogawara plans to launch the canoe at Lake Inawashiro next month. (via Pink Tentacle).

Monday 7 April 2008

Rowing the Vistula

There's a great report on Duckworks Magazine today from Wojtek Baginski, chronicling his row down the Vistula to Gdansk in his Michalak-designed Robote, with a final glimpse of the Baltic. Lots of lovely pics. My holiday plans have now changed to:
1) Poland
2) Tuebingen
3) Texas

Sunday 6 April 2008

I may not get out rowing today....

...unless the weather improves.

Flashboat design from Paul Fisher

The incredibly prolific designer Paul Fisher's latest creation is the Deben 400, a rowing skiff based on the Cornish flashboat. It is much shorter at 4m (13ft) - the average flashboat is around 18ft - but has the same fine ends and low wetted area. It is a very light boat, Paul reckons it should weigh in at about 27kg (60lb). With no outriggers and a 1.2m beam that will fit on any roof rack it will be extremely easy to car top too. It is probably a bit tippy, as all flashboats are, but that is the price you pay for speed.
The name is a bit odd, though. The River Deben is in Suffolk, not Cornwall.

Saturday 5 April 2008

Chichester duck punt

Having written just a few posts ago that I had never seen a duck punt in Chichester Harbour I came across this one on a trailer at Itchenor.
It doesn't seem to have the fittings for a duck gun (the monster cannon used to fire a cone of shot into a rising flock of duck, because you only get one chance) so I suppose the wildfowlers must use shotguns. In addition, an outboard mount seems to have been added to the transom, and outboards are illegal when puntgunning.

Friday 4 April 2008

In Praise of Hooky

‘Twas Friday, and the office slaves

Did toil and grumble at their trades:

I skipsy went to briny waves,

And rowed with splashing blades.

Thursday 3 April 2008

Pilot gig appeal

According to this report in the Herald Express down in the West Country, the members of Paignton Rowing Club have got fed up with not being able to go out in their shells when wave heights in Tor Bay exceed about 2in, so they want to get into pilot gig racing. They have got a fibreglass boat for training but need a proper elm leaf boat to qualify for racing.
An opportunity has come up to buy Minerva, recently built by RB Boatbuilding in Bristol, but for that they need to raise £20,000. A 'try before you buy' day induced such enthusiasm they raised £4,000 on the spot, but they are still short of seven grand. Judging by the smiles on the faces of these guys in a photo taken from the club website, they are having lotsafun, so if you want to help them out get in contact with the club here.

Wednesday 2 April 2008

From the Ringside

Midget Mancunian bruiser Ricky 'The Hitman' Hatton let slip a secret of his training regime at a charity dinner the other day, according to the Manchester Evening News. It seems he has difficulty keeping inside light welterweight limits:
"I'm known for putting weight on in-between fights and you should have seen me at the start of training. I got on the rowing machine and it sank."
Yes, and using a rowing machine is boring, boring boring, Ricky - get out on the water instead!

Tuesday 1 April 2008

Discoveries in Brazil

Serendipity is one of the great gifts of the internet. One thing leads to another, link by link, and suddenly the evening has gone. I started today at indigenous boats, an interesting blog by maritime author, editor, boatbuilder and sailor Bob Holtzman. He describes the jangada, a traditional fishing boat from the north coast of Brazil. When the Portuguese arrived it was made of five logs of piuva wood (like balsa) held together with wooden pegs, but it has since developed into a planked vessel. It has a highly sophisticated sail with an adjustable mast.
There are at least two jangadas in Britain, one in the National Maritime Museum Cornwall (above left) in Falmouth and the other in World of Boats (below right) in Eyemouth, just north of Berwick on Tweed.
To find out more on this attractive boat, I googled it (natch) and came up with another discovery, a Brazilian singer with a sweet voice called Cristina Motta. Her song Mucuripe is on YouTube, with some evocative shots of jangadas. It is a bit like Fado, dripping with nostalgia.