Sea Shanties

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Sea shanties are traditional sailors work songs. They were developed on large sailing ships to rhythmically accompany and coordinate group labor such as the hoisting of sails or the weighing of anchors. Originally sung a capella, often in a call-and-response form, with a "shantyman" singing a line solo and the rest of the crew answering with a refrain.

Maritime ballads and other songs sung on board ship to entertain each other during leisure times should not be confused with these work songs.