The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #5623   Message #922264
Posted By: Joe Offer
31-Mar-03 - 02:27 AM
Thread Name: Origins: Do You Love an Apple?
Subject: ADD: He Comes Down Our Alley^^

1 He comes down our alley and whistles me out
His hands in his pockets, his shirt 'angin' out
But yus I luvs 'im
I can't denies it
I goes wiv 'im
Wher'ever 'e goes

2 He bought me an 'ankerchief, red white and blue
Outside the pawnshop 'e tore it in two

3 O I like an apple and I like a pear
And I like a feller with nice curly hair

4 'E took me to the public and ordered me stout
Before I could drink it, 'e'd ordered me out

5 Before we was married, we 'ad lots o' quids
But now that we's married, we got lots o' kids^^

Source: Folksongs of Britain and Ireland, Peter Kennedy, 1975

from the singing of Betty Redshaw of London, recorded by Peter Kennedy in 1954.
Kennedy's notes say that the song now seems to be widespread in England, Scotland, and Ireland; but it was not known to the public until it was recorded by Phil Hamond in Norfolk and broadcast in 1952. Its airing on the radio brought a letter from a listener in London who had heard it sung by children in the poorer districts of Liverpool and Birkenhead during the Second World War.
Betty Redshaw learned her version from her grandfather, whose family lived alongside the River Thames at Gravesend in Kent. He kept a notebook of all the old songs and shanties he heard from the sailors who came into the London docks.

Click to play

Kennedy cites verses from a number of other versions.
Lucy Stewart of Aberdeenshire Scotland (1954)

Children's version:
Durham & Northumberland miners' wives:
Fishwives at Yarmouth in Norfolk: