Tom Lewis is renowned for composing "The Last Shanty" (A Sailor Ain't A Sailor), ''Sailor's Prayer' (Send Down A Dove), "Legend" (Marching Inland), plus many other contemporary songs of the sea that have become folk standards, sung by more than 40 groups around the world. - in fact many of Tom's compositions are mistaken for traditional shanties, and you're bound to be familiar with more of them.
So go beyond “The Wellerman” (which was resurgent in 2020) and be entertained by Tom's powerful voice, captivating storytelling and his own songs of sea.
Lewis was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland and grew up in Gloucester, England. He served in the Royal Navy from 1959 until 1983, mostly in the (diesel) Submarine Service.
He developed his interest in sea shanties while frequenting the Howff Folk Song Club of Dunfermline, Scotland, in the 1960s, and began to perform at clubs and festivals in his off-time. On completing his naval service, he emigrated to Canada, "to be somewhere completely different to a large port city". In 1987, he began to record, and to tour due to popular demand.
"A consistently strong set that packs a wallop. Fine stuff with real bite."
Living Tradition Magazine UK
"Thoroughly entertaining ... brimming with robustly resonant harmonies and songs, by turns traditional and contemporary, thoughtful and whimsical."
Mike Joyce, The Washington Post