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Lyr Req: The Bells of Hell Go Ting-A-Ling-A-Ling

DigiTrad:
THE BELLS OF HELL


GUEST,Terilu 19 Jul 02 - 12:34 AM
GUEST,GUEST Bonnie Shaljean (far from home) 19 Jul 02 - 12:45 AM
Counterfit 19 Jul 02 - 02:46 AM
Keith A of Hertford 19 Jul 02 - 02:55 AM
cetmst 19 Jul 02 - 06:53 AM
GUEST,Steve 19 Jul 02 - 07:29 AM
IanC 19 Jul 02 - 07:51 AM
Mr Red 19 Jul 02 - 07:51 AM
Steve Parkes 19 Jul 02 - 09:39 AM
GUEST,fretless, at work 19 Jul 02 - 02:32 PM
Sorcha 19 Jul 02 - 02:52 PM
Gareth 19 Jul 02 - 03:01 PM
EBarnacle1 19 Jul 02 - 03:50 PM
Keith A of Hertford 20 Jul 02 - 04:20 AM
GUEST,gfisher 08 Jul 09 - 12:38 AM
GUEST,gfisher 08 Jul 09 - 12:49 AM
Joe Offer 08 Jul 09 - 02:37 AM
Little Robyn 08 Jul 09 - 02:46 AM
Uncle Phil 08 Jul 09 - 08:55 AM
Jim Dixon 27 Jan 10 - 06:49 PM
Jim Dixon 27 Jan 10 - 07:06 PM
Steve Gardham 28 Jan 10 - 03:45 PM
Lighter 30 Jan 10 - 05:22 PM
GUEST,J Corlett 05 Dec 13 - 02:26 PM
meself 05 Dec 13 - 03:20 PM
Joe Offer 05 Dec 13 - 04:25 PM
Joe Offer 05 Dec 13 - 04:39 PM
GUEST,Tinker from Chicago 05 Dec 13 - 11:29 PM
Lighter 06 Dec 13 - 04:37 PM
Joe Offer 07 Dec 13 - 05:44 AM
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Subject: RE: The Bells of Hell
From: GUEST,Terilu
Date: 19 Jul 02 - 12:34 AM

Anyone remember the song,
    "The bells of hell go ting a ling a ling for you, but not for me;
    For me the angels sing a ling a ling...?"
I learned it as a 10 year old in Episcopal church camp (figures, right?) and have never been able to track down the rest of it. If it's possible anywhere, I know Mudcat is the place!
Another Episcopal and probably Catholic joke, "Where there are three or four Episcopalians gathered together, there's always a fifth!"
Thanks,
Terilu


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Subject: RE: The Bells of Hell
From: GUEST,GUEST Bonnie Shaljean (far from home)
Date: 19 Jul 02 - 12:45 AM

I seem to remember that one of the characters in Brendan Behan's "The Hostage" sings it during the course of the play, so if you can run down a copy of the script, the words should be in there somewhere. My fave line was always, "O death, where is thy sting-a-ling-a-ling".


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Subject: RE: The Bells of Hell
From: Counterfit
Date: 19 Jul 02 - 02:46 AM

There's a song somewhere dating from the First World War relating to small coastal shipping in this context.


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Subject: RE: The Bells of Hell
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 19 Jul 02 - 02:55 AM

Oh death where is thy stingalingaling,
Og grave thy victory,
The bells....,
A ww1 soldier song that can be heard in the musical film Oh What A Lovely War.
I believe it derives from a music hall song that went "She only answered tingalingaling"
Keith


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Subject: RE: The Bells of Hell
From: cetmst
Date: 19 Jul 02 - 06:53 AM

Printed versions in two books, lyrics with music, "Legion Airs", ed. Frank Peat and Lee Orean Smith 1932 and "Songs From the Front and Rear" by Anthony Hopkins, Canadian Servicemen's Songs 1979. Changes angels to little devils in first verse. Said to be a song of airmen who survived crashes in WWI and revived by airmen in WWII.


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Subject: RE: The Bells of Hell
From: GUEST,Steve
Date: 19 Jul 02 - 07:29 AM

"..death where is thy sting?" is biblical, I think.


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Subject: RE: The Bells of Hell
From: IanC
Date: 19 Jul 02 - 07:51 AM

"O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?" The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law." 1 Corinthians 15:51-55

:-)


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Subject: RE: The Bells of Hell
From: Mr Red
Date: 19 Jul 02 - 07:51 AM

I was tolled about the Bells of Hell - they're red of course.


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Subject: RE: The Bells of Hell
From: Steve Parkes
Date: 19 Jul 02 - 09:39 AM

Never mind the film (excellent though it be), go and see the play if you get the chance--much more in it!

Steve


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Subject: RE: The Bells of Hell
From: GUEST,fretless, at work
Date: 19 Jul 02 - 02:32 PM

As Liam's Brother will remember, the Bells of Hell was also the name of a pub in New York; 12th (maybe 13th) Street just off 6th Avenue.


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Subject: RE: The Bells of Hell
From: Sorcha
Date: 19 Jul 02 - 02:52 PM

This is all I found:
    'The Bells of Hell'
    The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling, for you but not for me.
    And the little devils have a sing-a-ling-a-ling, for you but not for me.
    Oh death where is they sting-a-ling-a-ling, oh grave thy victory?
    The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling, for you but not for me.


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Subject: RE: The Bells of Hell
From: Gareth
Date: 19 Jul 02 - 03:01 PM

Then there was this thread Trench Songs of World War I

Gareth


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Subject: RE: The Bells of Hell
From: EBarnacle1
Date: 19 Jul 02 - 03:50 PM

Malachy McCourt ran the pub when he was not taking part in his other interests and activities. It was worth dropping in on with some regularity.


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Subject: RE: The Bells of Hell
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 20 Jul 02 - 04:20 AM

The Corinthians passage "Oh death...." would be well known as it was/is used in Anglican funeral services.


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Subject: RE: The Bells of Hell
From: GUEST,gfisher
Date: 08 Jul 09 - 12:38 AM

I sang this in a little play in the 7th grade one summer. The words go:

The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling
For you but not for me:
For me the angels sing-a-ling-a-ling,
They've got the goods for me.
Oh! Death, where is thy sting-a-ling-a-ling
Oh! Grave, thy victory?
The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling
For you but not for me. ^^^

However I learned it as "for me but not for you", and I learned it with:
    "And the little devils have a sing-a-ling-a-ling, for you but not for me"

WW1 vet relative told me this song was very popular in WW1. I remember the tune quite well, but can't seem to put the tune into text. Funny song though!


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Subject: RE: The Bells of Hell
From: GUEST,gfisher
Date: 08 Jul 09 - 12:49 AM

I guess I should add that summer was boys camp in 1965. I think those are the only lyrics. I've never found more lyrics than what I listed and I too have tried to find more. Seems everyone who actually knew the song died rather a long time ago. I guess that makes us old fogies...


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Subject: RE: The Bells of Hell
From: Joe Offer
Date: 08 Jul 09 - 02:37 AM

There's a Wikipedia article on the song here (click) and a YouTube video here (click).

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: The Bells of Hell
From: Little Robyn
Date: 08 Jul 09 - 02:46 AM

My Mum used to sing:
    The bells of hell go ding a ling a ling
    For you and not for me.
    For me the angels sing a ling a ling
    Through all eternity.
    Oh death, where is thy sting a ling a ling
    Oh grave thy victory?
    The bells of hell go ding a ling a ling
    For you and not for me.

Almost the same. She probably learned it during WW2.
Robyn


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Subject: RE: The Bells of Hell
From: Uncle Phil
Date: 08 Jul 09 - 08:55 AM

Here's the way I learned it while visiting eastern Kentucky in the early 1960s

       The Bells of Hell

The Bells of Hell will ring-a-ling-a-ling,
For you but not for me,
The angels they will sing-a-ling-a-ling,
For all eternity,
Oh! Death, where is thy sting-a-ling-a-ling,
Oh! Grave, thy victory?
No go ting-a-ling-a-ling or sting-a-ling-a-ling,
But sing-a-ling-a-ling for me.

- Phil


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 27 Jan 10 - 06:49 PM

From The Mixer and Server, Volume 20 (Cincinnati, Ohio: Hotel and Restaurant Employes' International Alliance, 1911), page 60:


A Ding-a-ling Hymn.

In London, the Salvation Army lassies and other street-praying bands are singing a song that has become universally popular in the crowded sections of the city. Here is one verse of it:

The bells of hell go ding-aling-ling
For you, but not for me;
The sweet-voiced angels sing-a-ling-ling
Through all eternity.
Oh, death, where is thy sting-a-ling-ling;
Oh, grave, thy victory!
No ding-a-ling-ling, no sting-a-ling-ling.
But sing-a-ling-ling for me.

—New York Press.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 27 Jan 10 - 07:06 PM

From The Vermilion Box by Edward Verrall Lucas (New York: George H. Doran Company, 1916), page 343:

Richard Haven to Barclay Vaughan

My Dear B.,—My nephew Toby Starr, who is a second lieutenant at the Front, has sent me an astonishing chorus, or litany, or what you will, that the men are singing. The Germans hear them, of course, but I doubt if it is sent across No Man's Land as an intimation of our own eventual bliss and the Germans' certain loss of it. I should guess not. That is not the British soldier's way, his heart being far more in conquering the enemy than in criticising him. Indeed, I find such men from the Front as I chance to meet very loth to talk about the Hun at all and rarely voluble as to his iniquities. Rather do they emphasise his merits as a fighter.

I should guess that this odd triumphant credo, set to an old music-hall tune and springing up and spreading probably as mysteriously as a folksong, is not a defiance of the earthly foe, but merely one more manifestation of the courageous levity that this war has drawn forth. It is Tommy's light surface way of accepting death. To do even so tremendous a thing as that without a touch of humour would not be playing the game. We get therefore trench after trench filled with men who at any moment may be blown to atoms singing these astonishing words:

The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling
For you but not for me.
For me the angels sing-a-ling-a-ling
They've got the goods for me.
O Death, where is thy sting-a-ling-a-ling?
O Grave, thy victoree?
The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling
For you but not for me!

Isn't that wonderful? and incredible? It is not exactly religion, and yet it is religion. Fatalism with faith. Assurance with disdain. The very aristocracy of confidence. And only the new British soldier could sing it....


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 28 Jan 10 - 03:45 PM

My old mate Mick Robinson sang this at Scapa Flow after WWII. I have a recording somewhere and it should be on the British Library Sound Archive site.
'The Bells of Hell' doesn't get a mention in Kilgarriff but it gives 'Ting-a-ling-a-ling' which may be the song, no date given though.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling
From: Lighter
Date: 30 Jan 10 - 05:22 PM

So popular in the British Army in World War I that Eric Hiscock used it as the title of his 1970s memoir.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling
From: GUEST,J Corlett
Date: 05 Dec 13 - 02:26 PM

As the words are a direct quote taken from the Christian bible,I think the context needs to be followed, it is a triumphant cry to the devil - he's the one it's meant for...not us - we have the opportunity to be free of that. Have fun!!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling
From: meself
Date: 05 Dec 13 - 03:20 PM

I have heard - or partially misheard - the 'For me the angels sing ... ' line as 'The devil's got a thing-a-ling-a-ling,/For you and not for me.' Whatever the intent of the original lyricist, I don't get the impression that it was sung so widely for its theological implications as much as for its humorous implications.


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE BELLS OF HELL GO TING-A-LING-A-LING
From: Joe Offer
Date: 05 Dec 13 - 04:25 PM

Ah, meself, but the theological implications are profound:
    God loves me, but you're going to hell....


Here's are the lyrics from Max Arthur's When This Bloody War Is Over: Soldiers' Songs of the First World War (2001). I like the background notes.

The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling
[tune: She Only Answered Ting-a-ling-a-ling]

The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling
For you but not for me:
For me the angels sing-a-ling-a-ling,
For you but not for me. [this line doesn't fit logically, so I think the author has it wrong]

Oh! Death, where is thy sting-a-ling-a-ling
Oh! Grave, thy victory?
The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling
For you but not for me. ^^^

Often sung by soldiers as they came out of the line as others were passing, heading for the Front. Strong emphasis was put on the word 'you.'


So, I wonder if we can find the lyrics to "She Only Answered Ting-a-ling-a-ling."


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Subject: ADD: Ting-a-Ling-Ting-Tay (Harry Dacre)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 05 Dec 13 - 04:39 PM

Ah, here it is, from http://www.traditionalmusic.co.uk/songster/37-ting-a-ling-ting-tay.htm

TING-A-LING-TING-TAY.
Copyright, 1892, by T. B. Harms & Co.
(Words and Music by Harry Dacre.)

I once met a beautiful Spaniard, quite the finest And divinest!
She played, in the streets, for a living, altho' she'd the grace of a queen;
Her beauty was something magnetic, I grew frantic! quite romantic!
I followed her 'round like a poodle, and worshipped her sweet mandolin!
At last I ventured to say, "How really delicious you play!"

Chorus.
But she only answered "Ting-a-ling" to all that I could say;
She seemed to live on ting-a-ling, by night as well as day.
I told her I would marry her, but all she had to say
Was, ting-a-ling-a-ling-ting, ting-a-ling-a-ling-ting, ting-a-ling-a-ling, ting-day!

I'm neither so old nor so ugly, I am healthy, fairly wealthy,
And thousands would be quite delighted to join me in Hymen's strong noose!
But this was the girl that I wanted! I adored her, and implored her
To tell me my fate, if she loved me; alas! all my prayers were no use.
Said I, "If you won't be my wife, I'll soon put an end to my life!" - Chorus.

I showed her a bottle marked "poison!" and a dagger, just for swagger,
A rusty, six-chamber revolver was also displayed in my belt;
I told her unless she consented, she'd repent it, for I meant it!
For no one could ever imagine the fantastic feelings I felt.
Then I lifted the "dajjer" on high, my life hung upon her reply!- Chorus.

Just then I was tapped on the shoulder by a Spaniard, black-and-tan-iard!
A swarthy, big lump of a fellow, who rose quite six feet from the floor;
He said my love-making was treason, out of season, out of reason;
For she who had won my affections was deaf as the post of a door.
"Moreover," said he, "By-the-bye, she is my wife," And that's why-

Chorus.
She could only answer "Ting-a-ling" to all that I could say;
She seemed to live on ting-a-ling, by night as well as day.
I told her I would marry her, but all she had to say,
Was, ting-a-ling-a-ling-ting, ting-a-ling-a-ling-ting, ling-a-ling-a-ling, ting-day!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling
From: GUEST,Tinker from Chicago
Date: 05 Dec 13 - 11:29 PM

It's been ages since I was in "The Hostage" but I remember Behan's version, or parody, of this as
    The bells of hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling for you but not for me.
    O death, where is thy sting-a-ling-a-ling or grave thy victory?
    When you meet the undertaker, or the young man from the Pru,
    Get a pint with what's left over, now I'll say good-bye to you.
I take "the Pru" to mean life insurance, as in Prudential Insurance Co.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling
From: Lighter
Date: 06 Dec 13 - 04:37 PM

Consciously or otherwise, truly whistling in the dark for any combat soldier or airman singing the song.

The ironically crude gloating of "They've got the goods for me" is priceless.

I once saw a "xeroxlore" text from some forty years ago that had part of the original "She could only answer" chorus tacked on to the end of the usual "Bells of Hell" words.

Australian soldier Joe Maxwell titled his 1932 memoir of the Great War "Hell's Bells and Mademoiselles."


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Subject: ADD: The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling
From: Joe Offer
Date: 07 Dec 13 - 05:44 AM

Here's another version, just slightly different:

THE BELLS OF HELL GO TING-A-LING-A-LING
(For You But Not For Me)


The bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling
For you and not for me,
And the little devils how they sing-a-ling-a-ling
For you but not for me.

O, Death, where is thy sting-a-ling-a-ling?
O, grave, thy victory?
The bells of hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling,
For you but not for me.


from Legion Airs: Songs from 'Over There' and 'Over Here', compiled and edited by Frank E. Peat and Lee Orean Smith (New York: Leo Feist, Inc., 1932), page 141

You'll find almost the exact same lyrics on page 117 of Songs from the Front and Rear: Canadian Servicemen's Songs of the Second World War, by Anthony Hopkins (Hurtig Publishers, Edmonton, Alberta, 1979). The only difference is in the second line, For you but not for me


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