Treasure Island: 4. Ben Gunn

Jim and his friends must escape the Hispaniola when Silver and the pirate crew take over the ship. On the island Jim meets Ben Gunn - marooned on the island by pirates several years before.

Tutorial: learn the song 'Ben Gunn'

Tutorial: 'Ben Gunn'

Key timings in the tutorial video are:

00 00: Using an element of the song to warm-up. Singing the words 'Du du du / Du du du / Doobie doobie doobie doobie / Du du du' moving up the scale and then using 'Me', 'Cha', 'Ho' and then back to 'Du'.
01 48: Learning the first section, beginning: 'There were 15 men on a dead man's chest...' Learning a line at a time by listening then repeating. Putting the whole section together.
04 49: Learning the next section, beginning: 'Then up steps Jim...' Then singing sections 1 and 2 together, from the very start.
06 52: Learning the next section, beginning: 'Got no way home, living all alone' - noting the transition from major to minor key.
07 55: Dividing into two groups - Group A and Group B - to sing alternate lines and then continuing with the section beginning 'It's Saturday night and I'm out with the sprites...'
10 40: Singing through the ending section beginning 'Not a ghost of a chance...'

The story

Episode 4: The Hispaniola sails to the Caribbean and Jim discovers pirates aboard


The Hispaniola sails west to the Caribbean and the voyage is largely uneventful. Jim makes friends with Silver and visits him often in the ship's galley.

One evening they arrive in the vicinity of Treasure Island and Jim has fallen inside an apple barrel. Jim overhears Silver talking to the crew, and his words are of mutiny and cutting the throats of anyone who will not join with them. At the very moment Jim is about to be discovered land is spotted and in the excitement Jim manages to flee and warn the others.

One thing I claim - Squire Trelawney!
Long John Silver

See Resources below for a quiz about the story episode.

Episode 5: Jim, the Squire, Doctor and Captain escape ashore...where Jim meets Ben Gunn


The Squire, Dr Livesey, Smollett and Jim escape from the Hispaniola in a rowing boat with the remaining loyal crew members.

Once on the land Jim, now alone, meets Ben Gunn on a hillside. Ben reveals that he was once one of Captain Flint's crew and was marooned on the island. Jim sees a union flag flying below and knows his friends are safe.

See Resources below for a quiz about the story episodes.

Song: 'Ben Gunn'

Song 4: 'Ben Gunn' (vocal)
Song 4: 'Ben Gunn' (backing)

Learn the song ‘Ben Gunn’ - a song about Ben's years of isolation on the island.

Once you have learnt the song singing with vocal version you can polish your performance singing with just the backing track.

Click here for the lyric sheet.

Click here for the music sheet.


Tutorial - transcript
Song: 'Ben Gunn' - lyrics
Song: 'Ben Gunn' - music
Story: Episode 4 - transcript
Story: Episode 5 - transcript
Teacher's Notes
Meet the characters
Vocal warm-up

More from this series

3. Little bit of rum
5. Jimmy be good
6. Punto nero

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