The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #31005   Message #402769
Posted By: Wolfgang
21-Feb-01 - 07:44 AM
Thread Name: Lyr/Chords Req: The Barleycorn (from The Johnstons
Subject: Lyr Add: JOHN BARLEYCORN(?) (from the Johnstons)
I have listened to the Johnstons version last night and have realised after some time that they sing the version that is printed in Colm O Lochlainn, Irish Street Ballads. I can't follow my own link above at the moment so I don't know whether one of the many versions Malcolm has linked to is the version from the Irish Street Ballads.

However, it is more or less close to the version posted by Jon above except for his verse 3. If you replace Jon's verse three by the following three verses you have an idea what Colm O Lochlainn has printed:

Being in the summer season and the harvest coming on
it's the time he stands up in the field with a beard like any man.
The reaper then came with his hook and used me barbarously,
he caught me by the middle so small and cut me above the knee.

The next came was the binder and look'd on me with a frown
but in the middle there was a thistle that pulled his courage down.
The farmer came with his pitchfork and pierced me to the heart
like a thief, a rogue or a highwayman they tied me to the cart.

The thresher came with his big flail and soon he broke my bones,
'twould grieve the heart of any man to hear my sighs and groans,
the next thing that they done to me they steep'd me in a well
they left me there for a day and a night until I began to swell.

The next thing that they done to me they dried me in a kiln...(and then go on with Jon's version, verse 4, line 2)