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Amusing Work Songs??

Susan-Marie 17 Aug 99 - 03:56 PM
MMario 17 Aug 99 - 04:01 PM
Bert 17 Aug 99 - 04:11 PM
Alice 17 Aug 99 - 05:12 PM
bigJ 17 Aug 99 - 05:30 PM
Sandy Paton 18 Aug 99 - 12:20 AM
paddymac 18 Aug 99 - 02:50 AM
Roger the zimmer 18 Aug 99 - 04:08 AM
AndyG 18 Aug 99 - 05:26 AM
John in Brisbane 18 Aug 99 - 07:04 AM
Bert 18 Aug 99 - 09:15 AM
teller 18 Aug 99 - 09:57 AM
Alice 18 Aug 99 - 10:24 AM
Bert 18 Aug 99 - 10:52 AM
Alice 18 Aug 99 - 11:35 AM
marion 18 Aug 99 - 11:39 AM
Bert 18 Aug 99 - 12:59 PM
Alice 18 Aug 99 - 01:07 PM
Bert 18 Aug 99 - 01:11 PM
campfire 18 Aug 99 - 01:37 PM
Wally Macnow 18 Aug 99 - 06:05 PM
Bill D 18 Aug 99 - 06:38 PM
Roger in Baltimore 19 Aug 99 - 06:13 AM
Susan-Marie 19 Aug 99 - 08:53 AM
GeorgeH 19 Aug 99 - 08:56 AM
Roger the zimmer 19 Aug 99 - 09:05 AM
paddymac 19 Aug 99 - 11:17 AM
Jack (who is called Jack) 19 Aug 99 - 11:44 AM
Scott Hounsell 19 Aug 99 - 01:37 PM
Barbara 19 Aug 99 - 02:41 PM
AndyG 20 Aug 99 - 04:23 AM
Susan-Marie 20 Aug 99 - 06:48 AM
Jeri 20 Aug 99 - 10:00 AM
Dani 20 Aug 99 - 11:55 AM
CeltArctic 21 Aug 99 - 02:35 AM
Art Thieme 21 Aug 99 - 10:19 AM
MAG (inactive) 21 Aug 99 - 05:46 PM
emily rain 21 Aug 99 - 06:05 PM
Mungo 22 Aug 99 - 12:26 AM
Arkie 22 Aug 99 - 12:52 AM
JedMarum 22 Aug 99 - 11:02 AM
karen k 25 Aug 99 - 05:24 PM
GUEST,sbrown@vthc.org.au 22 Feb 01 - 11:42 PM
Uncle_DaveO 23 Feb 01 - 09:10 AM
Uncle_DaveO 23 Feb 01 - 10:00 AM
The Walrus at work 23 Feb 01 - 01:09 PM
Amos 23 Feb 01 - 01:22 PM
Kim C 23 Feb 01 - 03:27 PM
R! 23 Feb 01 - 03:32 PM
Nancy King 23 Feb 01 - 05:10 PM
Uncle_DaveO 24 Feb 01 - 05:12 PM
GUEST,Treaties 24 Feb 01 - 05:27 PM
Amos 24 Feb 01 - 11:41 PM
Arkie 25 Feb 01 - 01:34 AM
GUEST,mike putt @ work 25 Feb 01 - 04:15 AM
Jim Dixon 08 Dec 14 - 10:54 PM
Bert 09 Dec 14 - 01:26 AM
Jim Carroll 09 Dec 14 - 03:50 AM
GUEST,henryp 09 Dec 14 - 08:58 AM
Uncle_DaveO 09 Dec 14 - 12:26 PM
brashley46 09 Dec 14 - 12:34 PM
Jim Dixon 14 Dec 14 - 07:18 PM
Uncle_DaveO 15 Dec 14 - 10:04 AM
Jim Carroll 15 Dec 14 - 11:19 AM
GUEST,henryp 15 Dec 14 - 12:15 PM
MGM·Lion 15 Dec 14 - 05:15 PM
AlbertsLion 16 Dec 14 - 10:31 AM
AlbertsLion 16 Dec 14 - 10:33 AM
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Subject: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Susan-Marie
Date: 17 Aug 99 - 03:56 PM

WE've had a few threads about work songs and the labor movement, but they've been heavy on the serious songs. I'm looking for some more light-hearted songs that folks might like to sing at a light-hearted labor day celebration. So far I have "White Collar Holler", a parody called "Unions are a Girl's Best Friend", and "Why Paddy's Not at Work Today". Any other suggestions?


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: MMario
Date: 17 Aug 99 - 04:01 PM

"Let Union Be" - actually a grange song - but it's a play on words....


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Bert
Date: 17 Aug 99 - 04:11 PM

My sweetheart's the mule in the mines
I drive her without any lines
on the bumper I sit, and I chew and I spit
all over my sweetheart's behind.

Bert.


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Alice
Date: 17 Aug 99 - 05:12 PM

I was thinking of the parody of "Dark As A Dungeon" about the secretary, but when I looked in the DT with an @parody @work search, I found 26 songs. I don't think any of them are the secretary song I was thinking of.

1) AUSTRALIA'S ON THE WALLABY

2) BALLAD OF PARKWAY PATRIOT

3) BANKS OF THE CONDAMINE

4) BLOW YE WINDS IN THE MORNING (II)

5) THE BOLD LIBRARIAN

6) THE C.I.O. SONG

7) CASEY JONES - UNION SCAB

8) THE COMMUTER'S CORONACH

9) CONESTOGA ON THE JORDAN ROAD

10) THE DRAPES OF ROTH

11) DUMP THE BOSSES OFF YOUR BACK

12) EVERY MAN

13) FAREWELL AND ADIEU

14) THE FOREMAN'S JOB

15) FOUR POUNDS A DAY

16) HENRY THE ACCOUNTANT

17) I'VE BEEN RAILING AT THE WORKLOAD

18) THE JOLLY GRINDER

19) THE PROGRAMMER'S LAMENT

20) ROCKABYE BABY

21) SKIVING

22) SPERRY RAND

23) TEAMING UP THE CARIBOO ROAD

24) TWAS EFFICIENT AND COST EFFECTIVE

25) WHAT A FRIEND WE HAS IN RHODA!

26) THE WORK OF THE LANDLORD


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Subject: Lyr Add: On Mondays I Never Go to Work^^
From: bigJ
Date: 17 Aug 99 - 05:30 PM

What about the English music-hall song :

On Monday I never go to work,
On Tuesday I lie in bed,
On Wednesday I stay at home, work is the last thing in my head,
On Thursday it is 'dole' day, (Unemployment pay)
And Friday I detest,
It's too late to go to work on Saturday,
And Sunday is the day of rest.

Short and pithy!


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Subject: Lyr Add: On Mondays I Never Go to Work^^
From: Sandy Paton
Date: 18 Aug 99 - 12:20 AM

I learned it this way:

On Mondays I never goes to work,
On Tuesdays, I stays at home,
On Wednesdays, I never feel inclined,
Work is the last thing on my mind!
Thursday's an 'oliday, (shops all closed on Thursday afternoons)
And Fridays I detest.
It's too late to make a start on Saturday,
And Sunday is the day of rest.

London, 1958


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: paddymac
Date: 18 Aug 99 - 02:50 AM

Susan Marie - "Why Paddy Isn't at Work Today"? Could you be so kind as to post the lyrics? I suspect it's the same as, or very similar to, the "Sicknote" or "The Brick Song". The only recordings I've heard of it are by the Dubliners and the Corries, but there are probably others.


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Roger the zimmer
Date: 18 Aug 99 - 04:08 AM

They Call It Stormy Monday... (OK not funny but an "I hate work song"!

As well as the parodies from the DT listed which have white-collar jobs there is Frank Crumit's "The Man Who Sells insurance" the lyrics to which I posted earlier this year.


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: AndyG
Date: 18 Aug 99 - 05:26 AM

On a Monday Morning (Cyril Tawney) from the DT is another good "I hate work song".

AndIdotooyG


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: John in Brisbane
Date: 18 Aug 99 - 07:04 AM

The best example I know of is Jeremy Taylor's 'Prawns in the Game' which is all Pommie shop steward speak. I posted here a long time ago, but wouldn't have a clue as to how to find it again. It's delicious master piece. Regards John


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Bert
Date: 18 Aug 99 - 09:15 AM

Here's a few more...

Manura Manyah
When I'm Cleaning Windows
Molly Malone
Liverpool Barrow Boy
Jellied Eels
All my life I've wanted to be a Barrow Boy
Chinese Laundry Blues
Come Inside
The Lincolnshire Poacher
The Miller of Dee
The work of the weavers
The Great American Railway
I'm an Old Cowhand
The Twang Man
Washing up
Click go the shears
Coney Island Washboard
The Buffalo Skinners
The Ballad of Billy Kershaw

Bert


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: teller
Date: 18 Aug 99 - 09:57 AM

Shortest one I've come across:- 'I can't read and I can't write, But that don't really matter, Because I lives in Honiton, And I can drive a tractor!' So there! Teller.


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Alice
Date: 18 Aug 99 - 10:24 AM

Bert.... Molly Malone is amusing? Do you know a funny verse for it?


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Bert
Date: 18 Aug 99 - 10:52 AM

ALice,

I guess it's how you sing it.

Bert.


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Alice
Date: 18 Aug 99 - 11:35 AM

Ok, Bert, I bite... how do YOU sing it??


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: marion
Date: 18 Aug 99 - 11:39 AM

There's a song in "Rise Up Singing" about a woman being expected to make the coffee for all in her office... I think it's called "Coffee". The tune is Lord of the Dance (aka Simple Gifts)

The chorus:

Coffee, the bane of my life
I am not paid to be an office wife
You've got hands and a modicum of sense and health
You can make your goddamn coffee for yourself.

Good song - look it up if you have the book.


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Bert
Date: 18 Aug 99 - 12:59 PM

Alice,

It should be sung with exagerated sentimentality, Kind of like when you've had a few too many.


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Alice
Date: 18 Aug 99 - 01:07 PM

Kind of like with a wet sponge in a handkerchief, so when you wring it in your hands, wobbling the voice and casting mournful eyes to heaven, your hankie streams with tears splashing on the floor? ok, that would be amusing.


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Bert
Date: 18 Aug 99 - 01:11 PM

That's the way. Perfect.


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: campfire
Date: 18 Aug 99 - 01:37 PM

Don't know that I'd say its amusing, but today I could sing "Take This Job and Shove It".

campfire


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Wally Macnow
Date: 18 Aug 99 - 06:05 PM

Ginny Haley's(?) "I Am an Old Cowpuncher"
"The Cowpuncher's Waltz"
"Keep That Wheel a-Turning"


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Bill D
Date: 18 Aug 99 - 06:38 PM

ohh.."Keep That Wheel a'Turning" is great! Says a LOT!..*grin*


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Roger in Baltimore
Date: 19 Aug 99 - 06:13 AM

Is it too much of a stretch to include Shel Silverstein's "The Man Who Turns the Damn Thing Off and On"?

Roger in Baltimore


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Susan-Marie
Date: 19 Aug 99 - 08:53 AM

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, all, those are great suggestions. I'm going to be laughing all day looking at the lyrics!


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: GeorgeH
Date: 19 Aug 99 - 08:56 AM

On a slightly more serious but still (fairly) humerous note there's the likes of "The pit owner and the collier's wife".

G.


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Roger the zimmer
Date: 19 Aug 99 - 09:05 AM

...and for one who found his work amusing ("Once he did arrest a man and laughed until he cried"): The Laughing Policeman (NOT folk).


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Subject: Lyr Add: MOLLY MALONE (parody)
From: paddymac
Date: 19 Aug 99 - 11:17 AM

Alice - here's a Molly parody I wrote a few years ago which usually gets a chuckle or two.

If Dublin you'll visit, down on Grafton Street,
You'll find there a statue of Molly Malone
With great bronze bouzoukis, all shiny and bright,
From the strikin' of tourists by day and by night.
etc.

Now it may be the porter that causes the strokin',
Or maybe they're hopin' 'twill bring them good luck,
Whatever the reason, when you stand in that place,
You'll swear that she's got a big grin on her face.
etc.

Now the Dubs are the fun ones, an irrev'rent lot,
They do show their love in peculiar ways.
They have taken dear molly clear into their hearts,
and that's why they call her "The Tart With The Cart"
etc.

Hope you enjoy it.


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Subject: Lyr Add: DARK AS A DUNGEON (parody)
From: Jack (who is called Jack)
Date: 19 Aug 99 - 11:44 AM

Alice,

The secretary parody is one of my own.

Come listen, young ladies so fair and so fine,
And seek not your fortune in the clerical line.
It will darken your soul; it will soften your mind.
It's a lifetime of boredom in the clerical line.

Where the pressure is double, the raises are few,
And whenever there's trouble, the blame falls on you,
Where the fluorescents hum, and the Laser Jets whine,
It's a lifetime of boredom in the clerical line.

I got the rest of the verses somewhere (sorry, forgot to take my ginkgo this morning) I'll dig 'em up if'n you want em. Like most songs I do myself, I keep changing the lyrics so much I forget how the dang thing goes.


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Scott Hounsell
Date: 19 Aug 99 - 01:37 PM

You have "White Collar Hollar", maybe you would find "Working Joe" by Stan Rogers amusing


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Barbara
Date: 19 Aug 99 - 02:41 PM

'The Excuse Note' or 'Why Paddy's not at work today' is here in DT.

I like the Secretary's Song (not sure if that's the name) with the chorus:

"Whatever will they do
Whatever on this earth
When all the secretaries
Demand what they are worth

It's a somewhat older song, and I'm not sure it's here in the database. Anyone know it? Bev and Jerry, you out there?
There is also Leon Rosselson's song "Barney's Epic Homer" which is an epic song. I DO have the words around for that, if anyone wants it!!

I too love "Keep that Wheel a-Turnin'".
Blessings,
Barbara


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: AndyG
Date: 20 Aug 99 - 04:23 AM

And then there's Downsized bt Mr Barker. Look now because this page will be changed shortly.

AndyG


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Susan-Marie
Date: 20 Aug 99 - 06:48 AM

Thank you AndyG - I love listening to "Downtown" when I'm feeling too old, so "Downsized" is perfect!


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Jeri
Date: 20 Aug 99 - 10:00 AM

Here are some David Diamond songs. I think Alice mentioned a couple of them.
'Twas Efficient and Cost Effective
The Programmer's Lament
Limmerick Programmer
Grey Jacket and Grey Trousers
Dodkin's Job


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Dani
Date: 20 Aug 99 - 11:55 AM

Roger, I couldn't find that particular on from Shel Silverstein - could you point to it or post it for me? I could use it, too. I'm needing some music for a Sunday service on Labor Day: Work in Modern Society. Any thoughts, y'all?

I did, however, make the wonderful discovery of Shel's poetry for adults. I had no idea!!

I'm posting on particulary wonderful one on Art's 100 Words thread. Thanks!


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Subject: Lyr Add: WAIT TILL THE WORK COMES ROUND^^
From: CeltArctic
Date: 21 Aug 99 - 02:35 AM

I have two suggestions that haven't been meantioned. Both of them are British Music Hall numbers: British Workman's Grave (it's in the database under "Moving Father's Grave") and "Wait 'til the Work Comes Round."

I couldn't find the second one in the database, so here's the lyrics, if you're interested:

WAIT TILL THE WORK COMES ROUND
AUTHOR: Gus Elen
SOURCE: Cosmotheka

Some people knuckle down through being out of work
But I ain't one of them, not me.
If a gaffer starts to nag,
I soon picks up me bag
And I flops him one with this, you see...
It don't do to make people think you're out of work
Cause they're bound to turn their heads the other way.
It makes no odds to me what the future's going to be
So long as I've got all I want today...

CHORUS

So what's the use of kicking up a row
If there ain't no work about.
If you can't get a job, you can rest in bed
Till the school kids all come out.
And if you can't get work, you can't get the sack--
That's an argument that's sensible and sound.
So lay your head back on your pillow,
And read the Daily Mirror;
And wait till the work comes round.

When trade gets very rocky and you has to take the nocky
It's best to face the music like a brick.
And if creditors come down on you for everything you own,
You should bash them on the crumpet with a stick!
A lot of people walk the streets, a-looking out for work
Till they haven't got a leg to call their own;
Instead of just a-waiting for the work to come to them
With their feet stuck on the mantle-piece at home...

CHORUS

So what's the use of kicking up a row
If there ain't no work about.
If you can't get a job, you can rest in bed
Till the school kids all come out.
And if you can't get work, you can't get the sack--
That's an argument that's sensible and sound.
So lay your head back on your pillow,
And read the Daily Mirror;
And wait till the work comes round.
Line Breaks
added.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Art Thieme
Date: 21 Aug 99 - 10:19 AM

"The Rackets We Had 'Round The Blue Mountain Lake"
---a fine humorous lumberjack work song from New York collected by Frank & Ann Warner

"Pokegama Bear"
as above but from Minnesota collected by John Berquist (and on my recent CD)

"The Black Fly Song"
by Wade Hemsworth---about a survey crew in northern Ontario harassed by these pests.

"The Frozen Logger"
a tall tale from the lumber camps with a tune. definition: great funny song of work

"Saginaw, Michigan"
from country singer Lefty Frizell---a funny love song from the Michigan fishing industry on the Great Lakes

"The Bitter Withy"
a humorous traditional ballad about the difficulties involved in being young in the occupation of Savior!

"The Boll Weevil"
a traditional American song about being homeless when working in the migratory textile harvesting business.

"The Union Maid"
by Woody Guthrie

"This Land Is Their Land":

This land is their land,
It is not our land,
From the plush apartments,
To the Cadillac car land,
From the Wall Street office,
To the Hollywood star land,
This land is not for you and me.

As I went walking that endless breadline...
My boss gave me a one week deadline,
And the Daily Worker ran a better headline,
This land is not for you and me.

So take your slogan and kindly stow it,
If this is our land we'll never know it,
Let's join together and overthrow it,
This land is not for you and me.

(This parody was from THE BOSSES SONG BOOK 1960s.

"The Ladies Auxiliary"
by Woody Guthrie

Oh, the ladies auxiliary is a good auxiliary,
It's the best auxiliary that you ever did see,
When you need an auxiliary see the ladies auxiliary,
It's the ladies---aux-ill-eye-ree.

"The Philadelphia Lawyer"
by Woody Guthrie

"Sally Don't You Grieve"
from Woody & the Almanac Singers. About going to war.

"Talkin' Dust Bowl Blues"
by Woody Guthrie )the hardships of farming and homelessness but with humor.

"Hobo's Lullaby"
by Goebel Reeves (The Texas Drifter) and usually, erroneously, attributed to Woody. Especially the verse about the police.

"When I Was a Cowboy"
from Leadbelly--pokes fun at the job of cowboying---especially movie cowboys (Gene Autry) who "made a million dollars a-pullin' on the bridle reigns"

"Drill, Ye Tarriers, Drill"
a very funny song from Irish workers building the first transcontinental railroad in the USA.

"In the Good Old Colony Days"
a song from the Revolutionary War about a weaver, a tailor and a miller and how they made their living. We go to K-Mart now for all we had to go to them to have done for us.

"The Fox"
a trad. song from the British Isles and taken all over the English speaking world about the difficulties of hunting & making a living for unappreciative kids who just yell for more!!!

"The Wreck of the Tennessee Gravy Train
a funny song about hard times from Uncle Dave Macon

"Click Go the Shears"
a humorous song about shearing from Australia.

"The Night They Drove Old Dickie Down"
a funny parody about how hard it was to be president (at least for Nixon).

"My Name Is Yon Yonson"
a song about the ambiguities of working in a lumber mill in Wisconsin.

"Pick a Bale o' Cotton"
from Leadbelly.

"Rock Island Line"
from Leadbelly

"No More Auction Block for Me"
a slave song -- USA-- speaks for itself. Talk about unfair employment!

"By the Hush"
a great Irish song collected in Canada by Edith Fowke about a man who emigrates to the U.S. to better his lot and finds himself in as bad a situation--if not worse--than he left at home---the American Civil War.

(read between the lines and many songs are work songs---some very funny.

"Pat Works on the Railway"
a funny song from the Irish railroad workers in the 1800

"The Bullhead Boat"
a funny song/sad commentary---life working on the Erie Canal---New York.

THERE ARE SO VERY MANY...

I do hope this helps---Art Thieme


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: MAG (inactive)
Date: 21 Aug 99 - 05:46 PM

"Bony Fingers" -- does black humor count as funny? (Probably not in DB; contemporary country)

If you include military service, there's always "Stung Right."


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: emily rain
Date: 21 Aug 99 - 06:05 PM

is it too much of a stretch to include "Gentlemen of Distinction in the Army"?


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Mungo
Date: 22 Aug 99 - 12:26 AM

Hard Times in the Mill
The Thinking Man, John Henry
Erie Canal
Shovelin' Iron Ore:

"Something happened the other day that never happened before--
A man tried to get me to shovel Iron Ore.
I said, 'Old man, now, what do you pay?' He said, "Two bits a ton."
I said,'Old man, go diddle yourself, I'd rather bum!'"
(Music in Sandburg's 'American Songbag')

Paul Bunyan's Manistee
Squid Jiggin' Ground
Lukey's Boat
Christmas Day in the Workhouse

This is just off the top of my head--I have several thousand folk songs of all kinds committed to memory.

Mungo

Bob McElroy


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Arkie
Date: 22 Aug 99 - 12:52 AM

D.W. Washburn, the old Coaster number about not working, also nicely recorded by Mike Dowling.

Jack Was Every Inch a Sailor

Keeper of the Eddystone Light

Life Is A Toil, a complaint about housework.

Sam Jones Deliver Them Bones, Richard Thompson's song about a dealer in bones.


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: JedMarum
Date: 22 Aug 99 - 11:02 AM

The subject of this thread caught me: isn't Amusing Work Song an oxymoron?


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: karen k
Date: 25 Aug 99 - 05:24 PM

EVERYBODY WORKS AT MY HOUSE by Jesse Fuller
Everybody works but father
He sits around all day
Pokes his feet in the fire
Smoking his pipe of clay
Mama now she takes in the washing
So does sister Ann
Everybody works at my house
But my old man!


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Subject:
From: GUEST,sbrown@vthc.org.au
Date: 22 Feb 01 - 11:42 PM

Does anyone have the music and words to "All my life I've wanted to be a barrow boy"?

Was mentioned in the "Amusing work songs" thread, but I can't find anywhere.

Sarah Brown


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 23 Feb 01 - 09:10 AM

THE GREENHORN

A song about a guy who wanted to be a cowboy. They put him on a horse, which bucked him off "and I come down and busted the ground".

It includes such lines as:

They picked me up and carried me in
And rubbed me down with an old stake pin.
"Oh, that's the way they all begin;
"You're doin' fine!" says Brown.
"And tomorrow mornin', if you don't die,
"We'll give you another horse to try."
"Oh, say, can't I walk?" says I.
Says Brown, "Yes--back to town!"

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 23 Feb 01 - 10:00 AM

A few more, in the cowboy genre:

The Zebra Dun
The Strawberry Roan
and
Blood on the Saddle.

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: The Walrus at work
Date: 23 Feb 01 - 01:09 PM

Do military songs count? If so, you could start with "Muddley Barracks" .

Not a work song, but a song about work, Flanders & Swan's "The Gas Man Cometh"

Good luck.

Walrus


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Amos
Date: 23 Feb 01 - 01:22 PM

And for Playboy ladies, there is the "Woes of the Gentleman's Club" by no less an honored pair than Sir Leej and moi, at your disposal on the Mudcat Songbook page. Max has an .mp3 of it if you want it.

A


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Kim C
Date: 23 Feb 01 - 03:27 PM

The one about why Paddy's not at work today is one of my faves. We've all had days like that...


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Subject: Lyr Add: BARROW BOY^^
From: R!
Date: 23 Feb 01 - 03:32 PM

I don't have the music to Barrow Boy but here are the words - minus correct punctuation and possibly proper formatting. As I've heard it, the song repeats twice (or is that redundant? Repeats once? Oh sing it all the way through and then sing it again!)

Reen

All me life I wanted to be a barrow boy
A barrow boy I always wanted to be
I wheels me barrow
I pushes it with pride
I'm a coster! A coster!
From over the Lambeth side.

I turns me back upon society
Take me where the ripe bananas grow
They're only a dozen a shilling
That's how I gets me living.
I ought to have been a barrow boy years ago.


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Nancy King
Date: 23 Feb 01 - 05:10 PM

The Boarding Party recorded several in this genre, including:

Mauling Live Oak,

Dead Horse Shanty,

Sailor's Alphabet (there are "alphabet" songs about a lot of occupations), and

The Shanghaied Dredger.

Cheers, Nancy


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 24 Feb 01 - 05:12 PM

Yes, I have "The Woodsman's Alphabet" on a record. It starts:

A is for axe, as you very well know.
B is for the boys who use them just so.
C is for chopping that soon will begin,
And D is for the danger we always stand in!

Sing hi derry oh, how merry are we!
There's no-one one half as happy as we!
Sing hi derry oh, hi derry dong!
At the woodsman's shanty, there's nothing goes wrong!

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: GUEST,Treaties
Date: 24 Feb 01 - 05:27 PM

The chorus I love is:-

I'm looking for a job with a sky high pay
A four-day week and a two-hour day
I don't know why I should be that way
But I never could abide being idle.

Sorry I don't know the verses.


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Amos
Date: 24 Feb 01 - 11:41 PM

As Pat Worked on the Railway is rich with humour of a bitter sort; as is "Drill ye Tarriers, Drill"; and for the kind of work that's outside the mainstream, "Days of Forty-Nine" says a lot. And, as Art says, Warner's "Blue Mountain Lake" is all work and thick with laughs. My Dad was from upstate, although he became a cosmopolitan after college and moved to Manhattan; but the verse that always cracked him and made him hold his sides laughing was:

"And now my good fellas, adieu to you all,
For Christmas is comin' an' I'm goin' ta Glens Falls!
An' when I get there I'll go out on a spree,
Fer ya know when I've money the divil's in me!
Derry down, down, down derry down."

'Course that brings up all kinds of other songs -- the Erie Canal, for one, and the E-RI-E, for another. And the Locktender's Lament, which I believe Burl Ives recorded in the early 60's or thereabouts.

Regards, A.


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Arkie
Date: 25 Feb 01 - 01:34 AM

"When I was a lad, I served a term as an office boy in an attorney's firm..."

The policeman's Lot Is Not a Happy One

At least they make me laugh, but then so do the Clintons.


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: GUEST,mike putt @ work
Date: 25 Feb 01 - 04:15 AM

Paddy and the sicknote is a gem, but what about Goldwatch Blues by Donovan


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Subject: Lyr Add: I'LL DO ANYTHING BUT WORK (Ray Charles)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 08 Dec 14 - 10:54 PM

I'LL DO ANYTHING BUT WORK
[Some sources say this was written by Ray Charles; others say Dorinda Morgan]
As recorded by Ray Charles on "Rockin' with Ray" (1980)

I'll take you strollin' down Lovers' Lane.
I'll come to see you even in the rain.
I'll do anything for you—but work.

Sing your praises, hold your hand,
Tell the world that I think you're grand.
I'll do anything for you—but slave.*

I'll take you out to dine and dance,
Fill your ears with sweet romance.
See, baby, I know I'm handsome, but what the heck.**
I'm all yours if you pay the check.

I'm yours to have, yours to hold,
But that word "work" just leaves me cold.
I'll do anything for you but work.

I'll take you out to dine and dance,
Fill your ears with sweet romance.
Baby, I'm so good-lookin' it's a shame!**
I'm all yours if you pay the check.

I'm yours to have, yours to hold,
But that word "work" just leaves me cold.
I'll do anything for you but work.


* Other artists sing "work."

** Other artists sing "I know I'm not good lookin', but what the heck."

Spotify has recordings by Lowell Levinger, Grandpa Banana, and Duke Robillard, in addition to Ray Charles.


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Bert
Date: 09 Dec 14 - 01:26 AM

ONLY A WORKING MAN

div

When you pick up the Sunday morning papers
It's nearly always trouble that you read
Man and wife, always 'aving strife
For separation each of them will plead
Now if the woman only used a bit of tact
With 'appiness they always would be blessed
Do the same as I do and you'll never 'ave a row
Believe me, my old man's one of the best

Chorus: I wake him every morning when the clock strikes eight
I'm always punctual, never, never late
With a nice cup of tea and a little round of toast
The Sporting Life and the Winning Post
I make him nice and cosy, then I toddle off to work
I do the best I can
For I'm only doing what a woman should do
'Cos he's only a working man

I 'urry home each day and cook the dinner
And give it to 'im nice and 'ot in bed
It's nice to know when to work I go
'E's always thinking of me, so 'e said
"E lies in bed so patiently till I come 'ome to tea
I wouldn't 'ave him vexed at any cost
And if 'e backs a loser, never says an angry word
'Cos I give 'im back the money that 'e lost

Chorus:

div

Written and composed by Rule & Holt
Performed by Lily Morris (1882-1952)


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 09 Dec 14 - 03:50 AM

Bluey Brink

There once was a shearer by name Bluey Brink
A devil for work and a terror for drink
He could shear a full hundred each day without fear
And drink without winking four gallons of beer

Now Jimmy the barman who served out the drink
He hated the sight of this here Bluey Brink
Who stayed much too late and who came much too soon
At morning, at evening, at night and at noon

One day as Jimmy was cleaning the bar
With sulphuric acid he kept in a jar
Along comes this shearer a bawling with thirst
Saying whatever you've got Jim just give me the first

Now it aint in the history, you wont find it in print
But that shearer drunk acid with never a wink
Saying that's the stuff Jimmy why strike me stone dead
This'll make me the ringer of Stephenson's shed

All through that long day as he served up the beer
Poor Jimmy was sick with his trouble and fear
Too anxious to argue too worried to fight
He saw that poor shearer a corpse in his fright

But early next morning when he opened the door
Well there was that shearer a yelling for more
With his eyebrows all singed and his whiskers deranged
And holes in hide hide like a dog with the mange.

Says Jimmy and how did you find the new stuff?
Says Bluey it's fine but I've not had enough
It gives me great courage to shear and to fight
But why does that stuff set me whiskers alight?

I thought I knew grog, but I must have been wrong
The stuff that you gave me was proper and strong
It set me to coughing and you know I'm no liar
But every damn cough set me whiskers on fire
Notes

From the singing of A.L.Lloyd. Simon McDonald of Creswick Vic, sings another version called 'Bill Brink' which is closer to Tex Morton's version recorded in the late 1930's.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: GUEST,henryp
Date: 09 Dec 14 - 08:58 AM

Workin' at the car wash blues

Well, all I can do is a shake my head
You might not believe that it's true
For workin' at this end of Niagara Falls
Is an undiscovered Howard Hughes

So baby, don't expect to see me with no double martini
In any high-brow society news
Cause I got them steadily depressin', low down mind messin'
Workin' at the car wash blues

By the late, great Jim Croce.


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 09 Dec 14 - 12:26 PM

(Re)scanning quickly through this thread, I didn't see that anyone had nominated The Ratcatcher's Daughter.

Consider it done.

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: Lyr Add: BANANA BOAT (DAY-O) (Stan Freberg)
From: brashley46
Date: 09 Dec 14 - 12:34 PM

And there is Stan Freberg's version of Day-Oh (the Banana Boat Song).
Day-o, day-o
Daylight come and
Me wan go home

Day, he say...
(Man, I'm gonna have to ask
You not to shout like that)
Well... (it's like right in my ear)

It goes with the song
(Yeah, but don't holler
In my ear, man)

Well, it's authentic Calypso
(Yeah, but try standing
Next to me, man)

Well, the shout go
With the bongo drum
(Not my bongo drums, man
I mean, move away)

Well, I don't see why
(No, no, no, stand over
Next to the guitar, man)

He sent me over here
(Yeah, well, then sing soft, man
You know, I mean like, wow)

Ok, day... (It's too loud, man)
Day... (that's better)

Me say day, me say day
Me say day, me say day
Me say day-o, daylight come
And me wan go home
(Yeah, man)

Work all night
On a drink of rum
Daylight come and
Me wan go home

Stack banana til
The morning come
Daylight come and
Me wan go home

Lift six foot, seven foot
(Hold it, man) eight foot bunch
(Hold it, man)

Daylight come and
(Too loud, man)
Me wan go home
(Too loud)

Lift six foot, seven foot
(Hold it, man) eight foot bunch
(Hold it, man)
Daylight come and
Me wan go home
(My ears, man, like my ears)

Day... (no, hold it, man)
Me say day-o (it's too shrill, man)
(It's too piercing)

Well, I don't see why
(No, it's too piercing, man
It's too piercing)

Well, I got to do the shout
(No, man, it's too piercing
Like I don't dig loud noises)

Well, you ruined the whole
(Piercing) record is what you did
(Yeah, well, tough
I'll take my bongos and go, man
Cause the whole is like
Bugging me, anyhow)

Yeah, well, wait a minute
I won't shout (no, man)
(Like I didn't wanna make
This gig in the first place)

Oh, no, wait a minute
I'll be soft (yeah, well)
(Then back off from me, man
It's too piercing)

Okay, how's this, day-o
(Too loud, man)
Okay, day-o (too loud, man)
(I can still hear you
Would you mind leaving the room)

Okay *footsteps leaving*
Day, me say day-o (crazy)
*Footsteps entering*
Daylight come and
Me wan go home

*Footsteps leaving*
Day, me say day-o
*Footsteps entering*
Daylight come and
Me wan go home

A beautiful bunch
Of ripe banana
Daylight come and
Me wan go home

Hide the deadly
Black tarantula
Daylight come and
Me wan go home

(No, man, don't sing about
Spiders, I mean, like
I don't dig spiders)

Well, that's how the song goes
It goes hide the
Deadly black tarantula
Daylight come and
Me wan go home

(Is that it, can I leave now)
Not yet, we got a big finish

*Footsteps leaving*
Me say day, me say day
Me say day, me say day
Me say day-o

*Knocking*
Hey, I locked myself out
(Crazy) *window breaks*

I come through the window (yeah)
Daylight come and
Me wan go home


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Subject: Lyr Add: D. W. WASHBURN (Leiber & Stoller)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 14 Dec 14 - 07:18 PM

This was suggested by Arkie above. This is my transcription.


D. W. WASHBURN
Written by Jerry Leiber & Mike Stoller
As recorded by the Monkees, released as a single, 1968.

"D. W. Washburn," I heard a sweet voice say,
"D. W. Washburn, this is your lucky day.
A hot bowl of soup is waiting, a hot bowl of soup and a shave.
D. W. Washburn, we've picked you to save.

"Can't you hear the flugelhorn? Can't you hear the bell?
Even you can be reborn, you naughty ne'er-do-well.
If you don't get out of that gutter before the next big rain,
D. W. Washburn, you're gonna wash right down the drain.

"Up! Up! Come on, get up!
Get up out of your street!
If you can only make it from your hands to your knees,
I know you can make it to your feet."

"D. W. Washburn," I said to myself,
"D. W. Washburn, why don't you go save somebody else?
Well, I got no job to go to; I don't work and I don't get paid.
I got a bottle of wine; I'm feelin' fine, and I believe I've got it made.

"I'd like to thank all you good people for comin' to my aid,
But I'm D. W. Washburn; I do believe I got it made.

"I do believe I got it made." [Repeat and fade.]


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 15 Dec 14 - 10:04 AM

If it's not already in the thread, then
The Strawberry Roan

(Or even if it's already in the thread!)

Okay, it's not heavily funny, but "amusing" is
justified, I think.

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: Lyr Add: SONG OF THE TRADES
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 15 Dec 14 - 11:19 AM

From the singing of Ewan MacColl (The Wanton Muse)
Jim Carroll

BALLAD OF THE TRADES (English)
This comprehensive catalogue of the tools of the trades might be said to sum up the contents of this album. Each of the songs has been conceived in the terminology of the trade of its maker, each process of work honed down to fine shades of description, each symbol exactly mirroring or extending the tool(s) used, or the medium in which the trade is carried on. Such a song could well be extended into modern life, what with the myriad of new professions, trades and skills daily being developed - as long as the eye remains receptive to impressions of shape, the hand to impressions of texture and the mind open to analogous sensation and creation, 'The Ballad of the Trades' could well have thousands of verses! (Source: a collation of several broadside texts, with tune by the singer.)


SONG OF THE TRADES

Here's to all trades and all tradesmen,
And let you be wise men or fools,
But remember each day that your trade would decay
If the maids didn't look to your tools.
If the maids didn't look to your tools.

The Blacksmith, the smoky old Blacksmith
He's known as the best of good fellows:
But his iron would stay cold and his fire burn no coal
If a maid didn't blow up the bellows. (2)

The Miller, the musty old Miller,
The Miller is strong in the back,
But he won't lift a finger at measuring meal
Till a maiden holds open the sack. (2)

The Tailor, the frisky old Tailor,
He opens his pack in the yard -
But he never will try any fittings unless
There's a maiden to hold out his yard. (2)

The Baker, the dusty old Baker
He's so full of liquor and sin:
And he never will fire his oven red-hot
But he's thrusting his maiden in. (2)

The Butcher, the bloody great butcher,
He sells the best beef on the bone,
But he never starts grinding his cleaver unless
There's a maiden a-turning his stone. (2)

The Brewer, the yeasty old Brewer,
The Brewer that brews beer and ale;
And he never will let his brew come to the boil
But he's taking his maid by the tail. (2)

The Weaver, the cunning old weaver,
He follows the clattering trade;
But he never starts shooting his shuttle without
He's a-shooting it first at his maid. (2)

The Spinner, the weary old Spinner,
Who walks up and down with his mule,
But he's too proud to bend just to keep up his end
And a maid must be doffin his spool. (2)

The Ploughman, the jolly old Ploughman,
He follows the plough in the stilts,
But the clods wouldn't turn if a maid hadn't learned him
To drive the blade up to the hilts. (2)

The Collier, the mucky old Collier,
He works underground in the pit,
But there's never a tub would come up on the rope
If a maid didn't sharpen his pick. (2)

The Tinker, the travelling Tinker,
Who works with his solder and metal;
But he surely would fail when he's driving his nail
If his maid didn't hold up the kettle. (2)

Then drink to the journeyman craftsman,
And all who're apprenticed to trade,
But there's never a screw or a nut would be turned
If it weren't for the help of a maid. (2)


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: GUEST,henryp
Date: 15 Dec 14 - 12:15 PM

The Gas Man Cometh - Flanders and Swann

'Twas on a Monday morning the gas man came to call.
The gas tap wouldn't turn - I wasn't getting gas at all.
He tore out all the skirting boards to try and find the main
And I had to call a carpenter to put them back again.

Oh, it all makes work for the working man to do.


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 15 Dec 14 - 05:15 PM

15 years later!

I taught the late Sandy Paton that version of "On Monday I never go to work" {18 Aug 99} when he was here in 1958. I still sing it -- you will find it on my YouTube channel [Title: 'The Working Week']!

≈M≈

http://www.youtube.com/user/mgmyer


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: AlbertsLion
Date: 16 Dec 14 - 10:31 AM

What about Grey Flannel Line (Les Barker?)


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Subject: RE: Amusing Work Songs??
From: AlbertsLion
Date: 16 Dec 14 - 10:33 AM

Sorry Robin Hayes!!! (not Les Barker) :-(


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