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Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia

DigiTrad:
NOT IN THE BOOK


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Stewie 27 Oct 20 - 11:15 PM
Stewie 27 Oct 20 - 10:26 PM
JennieG 27 Oct 20 - 09:10 PM
Stewie 27 Oct 20 - 08:49 PM
Sandra in Sydney 26 Oct 20 - 11:26 PM
Stewie 26 Oct 20 - 10:13 PM
Stewie 26 Oct 20 - 09:26 PM
Stewie 26 Oct 20 - 08:49 PM
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Stewie 25 Oct 20 - 11:52 PM
Sandra in Sydney 25 Oct 20 - 11:38 PM
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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 27 Oct 20 - 11:15 PM

KEEPING SO THIN
(J.S.Neilson/C.O'Sullivan & C.Pearce)

The red cow will come, it is even
With frost in the air
The white blood she gives for the little one
Keeping so fair

The father will say at the sundown
How white is her skin
He looks for the smile of the little one
Keeping so thin

The red cow is out on the rushes
The old swans near by
They see all the turns in the weather
The scowl in the sky

The land is all buckshot and sorrow
It cries like a prayer.
The rubble it writes in the cutting grass
Famine is there.

The young lad has toppled the sheoak
The red cow comes in
She eats of the leaves for the little one
Keeping so thin

The lean year it is for the honey
When half the trees fail
But the red cow is good to the little one
Keeping so pale

The father has fears at the sundown
What grave night can bear
To the little one having no mother
And seeming so fair

The young girl who watches at nightfall
Old dreams will obey
Of dim time – the fairies – the moonlight
The lifting away

Another lovely Neilson poem to which Cathie O'Sullivan and Cleis Pearce put a tune.

Youtube clip

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 27 Oct 20 - 10:26 PM

BLOOD RED ROSES
(Anon)

Come all you sealers and listen to me
A lovely song I'll sing to thee
It was in eighteen hundred and three
Come down you blood red roses, come down
That we set sail for the southern sea
Oh you pinks and posies
Come down you blood red roses, come down

Our captain has set us down
And he has sailed for Sydney town
And he has left us with some grub
Come down you blood red roses, come down
Just one split pea in a ten pound tub
Oh you pinks and posies
Come down you blood red roses, come down

A bull seal he is bigger than a mouse
But a sealer's lot is lower than a louse
And now we're all covered over with fur
Come down you blood red roses, come down
We've grown us tails like Lucifer
Oh you pinks and posies
Come down you blood red roses, come down

An when our captain he returns to hell
Come down you blood red roses, come down
Why we will treat him here for a spell
Come down you blood red roses, come down

'Blood Red Roses' is a work song, a halyard chanty. When we string the different chanty-man cries together, they tell a story - a woeful one, but hardly exaggerated, for most sealing gangs that worked the southern bays and islands suffered from lack of food, exposure to wind and cold or to being completely forgotten. In 1813, one boat took five men off the Solanders. Two of them had been there since 1808. They had made their own clothing and shelters of sealskin and had eaten nothing but seal meat. The yankee whale ship, 'Enterprise', rescued three men from the Snares in 1817. These men had been set down in 1810 with but one quart of rice, a half-bushel of potatoes and an iron pot. 'Song of a Young Country' p12.

Youtube clip

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: JennieG
Date: 27 Oct 20 - 09:10 PM

A thought has popped into my mind, as they do from time to time.

Henry Kendall's poem "Bell-birds" has been sung - I think by Kate Delaney? - to the tune of 'The spinning wheel' ("Mary, the moonlight to shine is beginning....." That would make a nice addition to the list.

Hands up if you remember having "Bell-birds" in your poetry list at school.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 27 Oct 20 - 08:49 PM

THERE IS ANGUISH IN KNOWING
(D.Hewett/C.O’Sullivan)

There is anguish in knowing that I cannot reach you
This kiss can break no barrier of bone
I know no ease of language that might teach you
In that last place where we stand alone
Only in bitter struggle do we grow wise
Knowing no quarter, and no compromise

There is anguish in knowing that I cannot break you
Beyond this wall of flesh you stand intact
Ah! with what fingernails of hate I’ll rake you
Till love has ground its teeth on sour fact
Eyes, mouth and hands made blind, compassionate
Beyond the sting of love, the burr of hate

There is anguish in knowing we can never meet
In this small room where we are most alone
And yet the grass against the root grows sweet
And yet the flesh tastes sweeter at the bone
Four walls of love and sunlight on the floor
And the Judas kiss that closes the last door

Cathie O'Sullivan put a tune to this dark little poem by Dorothy Hewett.

Youtube clip

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 26 Oct 20 - 11:26 PM

I've just come across Ron Fairburn & am looking for the appropriate mondegreen thread to publish research by one of my friends. found it! & posted the story

His lockdown projects include sorting thru 60+ years of songs, tunes, tapes, other media, & other stuff & he noted something odd in the lyrics of one of Slim Dusty's greatest hits, a song that EVERYONE says was written by Slim.

Well, it was written by Ron Fairburn & the original words make sense. There are lots of lyric sites crediting Slim, probably more than those crediting Ron!


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 26 Oct 20 - 10:13 PM

THE MINER
(Anon)

The miner he goes and changes his clothes
And then makes his way to the shaft
For each man well knows he's going below
To put in his eight hours of graft

Chorus
With his calico cap and his old flannel shirt
His pants with the strap 'round the knee
His boots watertight and his candle alight
His crib and his billy of tea

The platman to the driver will knock four and one
The ropes to the windlass will strain
As one shift comes up, another goes down
And mining commences again

He works hard for his pay at six bob a day
He toils for his missus and kids
He gets what's left over and thinks he's in clover
To cut off his 'baccy from quids

And thus he goes on, week in and week out
To toil for his life's daily bread
He's off to the mine, hail, rain or shine
That his dear ones at home may be fed

Digging holes in the ground where there's gold to be found
But most times where gold it is not
A man's like a rabbit with this digging habit
And, like one, he ought to be shot

Youtube clip

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 26 Oct 20 - 09:26 PM

THE TEAMS
(H.Lawson/C.O’Sullivan)

A cloud of dust on the long white road
And the teams go creeping on
Inch by inch with the weary load
And by the power of the green-hide goad
The distant goal is won

With eyes half-shut to the blinding dust
And necks to the yoke bent low
The beasts are pulling as bullocks must
And the shining tyres might almost rust
While the spokes are turning slow

With face half-hid 'neath a broad-brimmed hat
That shades from the heat's white waves
And shouldered whip with its green-hide plait
The driver plods with a gait like that
Of his weary, patient slaves

He wipes his brow, for the day is hot
And spits to the left with spite
He shouts at Bally and flicks at Scot
And raises dust from the back of Spot
And spits to the dusty right

He'll sometimes pause as a thing of form
In front of a settler's door
And ask for a drink, and remark `It's warm’
Or say `There's signs of a thunderstorm'
But he seldom utters more

For rains are heavy on roads like these
And fronting his lonely home
For days together the settler sees
The wagon bogged down to the axle trees
Or ploughing the sodden loam

And then when the roads are at their worst
The bushman's children hear
The cruel blows of the whips reversed
While bullocks pull as their hearts would burst
And bellow with pain and fear

And thus with glimpses of home and rest
Are the long, long journeys done
And thus -- 'tis a thankless task at best —
Is distance fought in the mighty west
And the lonely battles won

Cathie O'Sullivan put a tune to this Lawson poem.

Youtube clip

Loaded Dog also recorded it on 'Hair of the Dog':

Listen

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 26 Oct 20 - 08:49 PM

REMEMBER PORT MELBOURNE
(Rob Fairbairn)

Remember Port Melbourne on Saturday night
At the pub that they call Molly Bloom's
Remember the sailors, the drunks and the fights
And the band at the end of the room
And do you remember the first time we met
You soon had me under your spell
It was one of those moments I'll never forget
Oh yes, I remember it well

Chorus:
They sang 'Waltzing Matilda', they played 'The Wild Rover'
Pat Reilly and Molly Malone they were there
The band kept singing it over and over
Oh don't you remember, my dear

Old Gentleman Jim had his place by the bar
A silver-topped cane in his hand
Big Eddie he borrowed the singer's guitar
And he strummed out 'The Black Velvet Band'
We were lost in the music, swept up by the sound
We knew all the words to the songs
When the man on the banjo sang 'Rain Tumbles Down'
The whole of the bar sang along

I met you at Molly's on Saturday night
I was nervous and shy, you were young
So I went to the bar and I bought us a pint
And the alcohol loosened our tongues
We spoke of the present, we honoured the past
The words began flowing like wine
We savoured each moment like it was the last
While the band played along all the time

Last Chorus:
The sang 'Waltzing Matilda', the played 'The Wild Rover'
Ned Kelly and Henry and Banjo were there
The band kept on singing it over and over
Oh don't you remember, my dear

From Loaded Dog 'A Coastline Facing West'.

I just found a web page where Loaded Dog songs can be heard. Listen here:

Remember Port Melbourne

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 26 Oct 20 - 08:03 PM

THE SANDY MARANOA
(A.W.Davis/Trad)

The night is dark and stormy and the sky is clouded o'er
Our horses we will mount and ride away
To watch the squatters' cattle through the darkness of the night
And we'll keep them on the camp till break of day

Chorus
For we're going going going to Gunnedah so far
And we'll soon be into sunny New South Wales
We shall bid farewell to Queensland with its swampy coolibah
Happy drovers from the sandy Maranoa

When the fires are burning bright through the darkness of the night
And the cattle camping quiet well I'm sure
That I wish for two o'clock when I call the other watch
This is droving from the sandy Maranoa

Our beds made on the ground, we are sleeping all so sound
When we're wakened by the distant thunder's roar
And the lightning's vivid flash followed by an awful crash
It's rough on drovers from the sandy Maranoa

We are up at break of day and we're all soon on the way
For we always have to go ten miles or more
It don't do to loaf about or the squatter will come out
He's strict on drovers from the sandy Maranoa

We shall soon be on the Moonie and we'll cross the Barwon too
Then we'll be out upon the rolling plains once more
We'll shout hurrah for old Queensland with its swampy coolibah
And the cattle that come off the Maranoa

From p130 ‘Old Bush Songs’.

Youtube clip

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 25 Oct 20 - 11:52 PM

That's a goodly number, Sandra.

I don't have anything on phones or iPads. I have LPs, CDs and books. I must admit that my Oz and NZ collection is much smaller than my old-timey, blues, American folk, Americana etc collection but it's okay.

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 25 Oct 20 - 11:38 PM

surely you must be coming to the end of yous songbook, Stewie, it must be bigger than an old fashioned Sydney Telephone book - inches thick!

or is it all in a little phone or iPad?

now we are 363!


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 25 Oct 20 - 09:16 PM

THE OLD BULLOCK DRAY
(Traditional)

Oh! the shearing is all over and the wool is coming down
And I mean to get a wife, boys, when I go up to town
Everything that has two legs represents itself to view
From the little paddy-melon to the bucking kangaroo

Chorus:
So, it's roll up your blankets and let's make a push
I'll take you up the country and I'll show you the bush
I'll be bound you won't get such a chance another day
So come on and take possession of my old bullock dray

I've saved up a good cheque I mean to buy a team
And when I get a missus, boys, I will be all serene
For, in calling at the depot they say there's no delay
To get an off-sider for the old bullock dray

Oh, we'll live like fighting cocks, for good living I'm your man
We'll have leather-jacks, johnny cakes and fritters in the pan
And if you'd like some fish, I'll catch you some soon,
For we'll bob for barramundies round the banks of a lagoon.

Oh, yes, of beef and damper I'll take care we'll have enough,
We'll boil in the bucket such a whopper of a duff
And our friends will dance, in the honour of the day
To the music of the bells of the old bullock dray

Oh, we'll have plenty girls, yes, you must mind that
There'll be flash little Maggie, and Buck-jumping Pat
There'll be Stringy-Bark Joe, and Greenhide Mike
Yes, my colonials, just as many as you like

Now we'll stop all immigration, we won't need it any more
We'll be having young colonials, twins by the score
And I wonder what the devil Jack Robertson would say
If he saw us promenading round the old bullock dray

There are numerous versions of this song. This one was collected from Stan Wakefield and posted to Mudcat back in the day by Bob Bolton. Ron Edwards published a 10-stanza version in his massive tome. Edwards noted that the tune is basically ’Turkey in the straw’.

I like this leisurely rendition by Mucky Duck albeit it omits the last 2 stanzas of the above version. It could well have accommodated an extra verse instead of the la-la-la stuff.

Youtube clip

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 25 Oct 20 - 08:31 PM

ONE LITTLE STAR
(Eric Bogle)

When I need to feel you near me
I stand in this quiet place
Where the silver light of countless stars
Falling on my face
Though they all shine so brightly
Somehow it comforts me to know
That some that burn the brightest
Died an eternity ago

But your light still shines
It's one small star to guide me
And it helps me to hold back the dark
Your light's still shining in my heart

I'm learning how to live without you
And I never thought I could
And even how to smile again
I never thought I would
And I cherish your heart's memories
Cause they bring you back to life
Some caress me gently
And some cut me like a knife

But your light still shines
It's one small star to guide me
And it helps me to hold back the dark
Your light's still shining in my heart

Can your soul be out there somewhere
Beyond the infinity of time
I guess you've found some answers now
I'll have to wait for mine
When my light joins with yours one day
We'll shine through time and space
And one day fall in a distant age
Upon some stranger's face

But your light still shines
It's one small star to guide me
And it helps me to hold back the dark
Your light's still shining in my heart
Your light's still shining in my heart

Youtube clip

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 25 Oct 20 - 08:08 PM

THE GOOD OLD CONCERTINA
(H.Lawson/M.Wyndham-Read)

'Twas merry when the hut was full
Of jolly girls and fellows
We danced and sang until we burst
The concertina's bellows
From distant Darling to the sea
From the Downs to Riverina
Has e'er a gum in all the west
Not heard the concertina

'Twas peaceful round the campfire blaze
The long white branches o'er us
We'd play the tunes of bygone days
To some good old bush chorus
Old Erin's harp may sweeter be
The Scottish pipes blow keener
But sing an old bush song for me
To the good old concertina

'Twas cosy by the hut-fire bright
When the pint pot passed between us
We drowned the voice of the stormy night
With the good old concertina
Though trouble drifts along the years,
And the pangs of care grow keener
My heart is gladdened when it hears
That good old concertina

Youtube clip

The tune following the poem in the YT clip is ‘Echuca Waltz’ from the playing of Harry Schaefer of Forbes collected by Rob Willis.

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 24 Oct 20 - 10:49 PM

THE ROAD TO NULLAGINE
(Grieg/Abbott)

I am with a survey party in the place that God forgot
And for White Australia it's the daddy of the lot
There ain't a drop of water anywhere along the line
There ain't no shady places on the road to Nullagine

Chorus:
I've tasted life in No Man's Land, I've fed the flies outback
I've tramped with empty tucker bags on Lawson's lonely track
I've toiled in northern Queensland where I thought the sun could shine
But no mistake, this takes the cake, the road to Nullagine

With a jigger on my shoulder and a waterbag in hand
I'm tramping' through the spinifex and ploughing up the sand
I'm sopping wet with honest sweat and salty as the brine
I'm boiled and baked and roasted on the road to Nullagine

When I wake up in the mornings, a swarm of hungry flies
Are trying to bore out holes in the corners of my eyes
I'm prickly heat from head to foot, this old frame of mine
Has had the dengue fever on the road to Nullagine

It's headaches, toothaches, bung eyes in a sling
Barcoo rot and God knows what - I can't eat anything
I'm all wrapped up in bandages, tied up with bits of twine
I'm like a walking leper on the road to Nullagine

One day I drank some water, 'twas from a scalding well
And very shortly after I felt inclined to yell
A burning hot sensation ran up and down my spine
I thought I was a gonner on the road to Nullagine

It's hermit crab and cock-eyed bobs, tinned dog and kangaroo
A change of diet once a month, boiled mutton or a stew
If we crave for pig or poultry when we're sitting down to dine
We thank the Lord for all we've got on the road to Nullagine

One night I went to Marble Bar, 'twas shortly after dark
And all the mongs for miles around came at me with a bark
I had a drop of amber, a shilling every time
There ain't no pots for sixpence on the road to Nullagine

It's public bars and fat cigars and let your sugar scoot
And decorate your wardrobe with a white pearl-button shirt
If you wear the good old dungarees and hobnails number nine
They class you as a nigger on the road to Nullagine

I've seen some queerish places I thought God had forgot
Out in the never-never where we used to call it hot
But this little bit o' country when old sol comes out to shine
Is the nearest place to hell on earth, this road to Nullagine

Another cracker from Roger Montgomery's 'Pilbara Connection'. The tune is given at pp140-141 of that collection. It was composed by Ted Grieg of Nullagine who could neither read nor write. He died about 1948. It was supplied to Montgomery by Tony Moriaty of Port Hedland. Evidently, it has also been published in Bill Scott's 'Penguin Book of Australian Humorous Verse'.



--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 24 Oct 20 - 10:00 PM

THE FLASH STOCKMAN
(Anon)

I'm a stockman to me trade and they call me Ugly Dave
I'm old and grey and only got one eye
In the yard I'm good, of course, but just put me on a horse
I'll go where lots of young 'uns daren't try

I've led 'em through the gidgee over country rough and ridgy
I'll loose them in the very worst of scrub
I can ride both rough and easy, with a brumby I'm a daisy
And a rightdown bobby-dazzler in a pub

Just watch me use the whip, I can give the dawdlers gyp
I can make the flamin' echoes roar and ring
With a branding-iron, well, I'm a perfect flamin' swell
In fact I'm duke of every blasted thing

To watch me skin a sheep, it's so perfect you could weep
I can act the silvertail as if my blood was blue
You could strike me pink or dead, if I stood upon me head
I'd be just as good as any other two

I've a notion in me pate that it's luck, it isn't fate
That I'm so far above the common run
So, in everything I do, you could cut me square in two
For I'm much two flamin' good to be in one

Youtube clip

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 24 Oct 20 - 09:45 PM

THE BUSHRANGERS
(Edward Harrington)

Four horseman rode out from the heart of the range
Four horseman with aspects forbidding and strange
They were booted and spurred, they were armed to the teeth
And they frowned as they looked at the valley beneath
As forward they rode through the rocks and the fern
Ned Kelly, Dan Kelly, Steve Hart and Joe Byrne.

Ned Kelly drew rein and he shaded his eyes
'The town's at our mercy! See yonder it lies!
To hell with the troopers!' - he shook his clenched fist
'We will shoot them like dogs if they dare to resist!'
And all of them nodded, grim-visaged and stern
Ned Kelly, Dan Kelly, Steve Hart and Joe Byrne

Through the gullies and creeks they rode silently down
They stuck-up the station and raided the town
They opened the safe and they looted the bank
They laughed and were merry, they ate and they drank
Then off to the ranges they went with their gold
Oh! never were bandits more reckless and bold

But time brings its punishment, time travels fast
And the outlaws were trapped in Glenrowan at last
Where three of them died in the smoke and the flame
And Ned Kelly came back - to the last he was game
But the Law shot him down (he was fated to hang)
And that was the end of the bushranging gang

Whatever their faults and whatever their crimes
Their deeds lend romance to those faraway times
They have gone from the gullies they haunted of old
And nobody knows where they buried their gold
To the ranges they loved they will never return
Ned Kelly, Dan Kelly, Steve Hart and Joe Byrne

But at times when I pass through that sleepy old town
Where the far-distant peaks of Strathbogie look down
I think of the days when those grim ranges rang
To the galloping hooves of the bushranging gang.
Though the years bring oblivion, time brings a change
The ghosts of the Kellys still ride from the range

Youtube clip

Edward Harrington

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 24 Oct 20 - 09:28 PM

RACE FOR THE SUN
(Bob McNeill)

The western bays are all silent now
The beaches we found
Deserted now, the flowing tide
Is the only sound

Still I linger here and listen while
These strange birds sing of oceans
The nights are warm and the winters mild
Not like on the island

But I left my heart
At a bend in the river
Cold harbour behind us
We took what we owned
With the smell of the bark
The spirit that lingers
With what we could could carry
In a race for the sun

Sail on?
You'll be safe now?
Nothing lasts forever?
Won't be the first time we've tried

Between the heads we wrestle her
In a mercy tide
The run between the Cabot shores
Was ever as wide

But these island boys are all strangers here 
With their dreams of ocean
The sea that pounds the eastern shore
Not like on the island

But I left my heart
At a bend in the river
We cut down the sumacs
Turned them into boats
With the smell of the bark
On our clothes as we boarded
Is all I remember
Of our race for the sun

Sail on?
You'll be safe now?
Nothing lasts forever?
Won't be the first time we've tried

Youtube clip

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: GUEST
Date: 23 Oct 20 - 10:56 PM

THE SONG OF AUTUMN
(A.L.Gordon/E.Elgar)

Where shall we go for our garlands glad
At the falling of the year
When the burnt-up banks are yellow and sad
When the boughs are yellow and sere?
Where are the old ones that once we had
And where are the new ones near?
What shall we do for our garlands glad
At the falling of the year?

Child! can I tell where the garlands go?
Can I say where the lost leaves veer
On the brown-burnt banks, when the wild winds blow
When they drift through the dead-wood drear?
Girl! When the garlands of next year glow
You may gather again, my dear—
But I go where the last year’s lost leaves go
At the falling of the year

Elgar put music to this lovely poem by Adam Lindsay Gordon.   The poem reminds me of one of my favourite poems by G.M Hopkins - 'Spring and Fall' to which Natalie Merchant has put a tune.

Youtube clip

Adam Lindsay Gordon

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 23 Oct 20 - 10:11 PM

THE COACHMAN'S YARN
(E.J.Brady/G.Jenkin)

This is a tale that the coachman told.
As he flicked the flies from Marigold
And flattered and fondled Pharaoh.
The sun swung low in the western skies:
Out on a plain, just over a rise,
   Stood Nimitybell, on Monaro;
Cold as charity, cold as hell.
Bleak, bare, barren Nimmitybell -
   Nimitybell on Monaro.

"Now this 'ere 'appended in' eighty-three,
The coldest winter ever we see;
Strewth, it was cold, as cold as could be,
   Out 'ere on Monaro;
It froze the blankets, it froze the fleas,
It froze the sap in the blinkin' trees,
It made a grindstone out of cheese,
   Right 'ere in Monaro

"Freezin' an' snowin'- ask the old hands;
They seen, they knows, an' they understands,
The ploughs was froze and the cattle brands,
   Down 'ere in Monaro.
It froze our fingers and froze our toes
I seen a passenger's breath so froze
Icicles 'ung from 'is bloomin' nose
   Long as the tail on Pharaoh!

I ketched a curlew down by the creek;
His feet was froze to his blessed beak
'E stayed like that for over a week -
   That's cold on Monaro.
Why, even the air got froze that tight
You'd 'ear the awfullest sounds at night,
When things was put to a fire or light,
   Out 'ere on Monaro.

"For the sounds was froze. At Haydon's Bog
A cove 'e cross-cut a big back-log,
   An' carted 'er 'ome ('e wants a jog -
   Stiddy, go stiddy there, Pharaoh!)
As soon as his log begins to thaw
They 'ears the sound of the cross-cut saw
A-thawin'out. Yes, his name was Law.
   Old hands, them Laws, on Monaro.

"The second week of this'ere cold snap
I'm drivin' the coach. A Sydney chap,
'E strikes this part o' the bloomin' map,
   A new hand 'ere on Monaro.
'Is name or game I never heard tell,
But' e gets off at Nimmitybell
Blowin' like Bluey, freezin' like 'ell
   At Nimitybell on Monaro.

"The drinks was froze, o' course, in the bar;
They breaks a bottle of old Three Star,
An' the barman sez, 'Now, there y'are,
   You can't beat that for Monaro!'
The stranger bloke, 'e was tall an' thin,
Sez,'strike me blue, but I think you win;
We'll 'ave another an' I'll turn in -
   It's blitherin' cold on Monaro.

'E borrowed a book an' went to bed
To read awhile, so the missus said,
By the candle-light. 'E must ha' read
   (These nights is long on Monaro)
Past closin' time, Then 'e starts an' blows
The candle out but the wick 'ad froze!
Leastways, thats what folks round 'ere suppose,
   Old hands as lived on Monaro.

"So bein' tired, an' a stranger, new
To these mountain ways. they think he threw
'Is coat on the wick, an' maybe too,
   Any old clothes 'e'd to spare. Oh,
This ain't no fairy, an' don't you fret!
Next day came warmer an' set in wet
There's some out 'ere as can mind it yet,
   The real old 'ands on Monaro.

"The wick must ha' thawed. The fire began
At breakfast time. The neighbours all ran
To save the pub ... an' forgot the man
   (Stiddy, go stiddy there, mare-oh).
The pub was burned to the blanky ground-,
'Is buttons was all they ever found.
The blinkin' cow 'e owed me a pound -
   From Cooma his blinkin' fare, oh!

"That ain't no fairy, not what I've told;
I'm gettin' shaky an' growin' old,
An' I hope I never again see cold,
   Like that down 'ere on Monaro! " …
He drives his horses, he drives them well,
And this is the tale he loves to tell
Nearing the town of Nimitybell,
   Nimitybell on Monaro.

Above is the full text of this classic example of the 'tall tale' as printed in Stewart & Keesing 'Australian Bush Ballads' pp301-303. It was first published in 'The Bulletin' in April 1922.

Jenkin's tune may be found at pp85-86 of 'Great Australian Balladists'. Jenkin shortens the ballad by omitting stanzas 3, 4 and 5.

Nimmitybell is one of the ways the name of the town of Nimmitabel has been spelt.

Nimmitabel NSW

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 23 Oct 20 - 09:04 PM

Thanks for the Manifold link. Together with a few other Darwin folkies, I spent a wonderful afternoon in a pub with the great man back when the world was young.

Graham Jenkin also put a tune to this beaut ballad:

THE WAYS ARE WIDE
(E.J.Brady/G.Jenkin)

Two women watched on a windy pier
(Three turns and a line to pass)
And one was the drunken skipper’s dear
And one was a sailor’s lass
The full o’ flood and the fall o’ tide
There’s little to guide between
But ways are wide where the seas divide
Wi’ places to bide between

Chorus:
The sun rose red, but the night fell grey
?Cheer’ly men, her load-line’s low?
Who drinks tomorrow may thirst today ?
Cheer’ly men, still cheerily ho

They trailed her out from the rowdy pier
They turned her nose to the sea
They lent their lungs to a burly cheer
And speeded her merrily
Her skipper rolled to his bunk dead-tight
Her mate in the scuppers lay
With a starboard red and a green port light
To gladden them on their way

Chorus

They lit their lamps on the lonely pier
As the twilight brought the rain
And the skipper’s dear laughed long and clear
But the other laughed in pain
For woman is woman and man is man
And the flesh it pricketh sore
He carries his burden as best he can
She carries her load and more

Chorus

Two women turned from the windy pier
One hurried her home to weep
But the skipper’s dear she was married next year
To a bank account — and sheep
The ship that sailed as the ship went down
(Three turns and a rope to pass)
Is posted ‘Lost’ and the grass goes brown
On the grave o’ the sailor’s lass

Final chorus:
The dank ooze silts where the deep hulks lie ?
Cheer’ly men, her load-line’s low
?For men may drown and women will die
?Cheer’ly men, still cheerily ho

Tune: pp87-90 'The Great Australian Balladists'.

Edwin James Brady

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 23 Oct 20 - 02:22 AM

oops, Stewie, I searched my list, but didn't screenshot the search (blush)

Stringybakr Creek is now no.351 & Poor Ned is now followed by the attribution (Manifold, Redgum, Lucas ??????)

speaking of John manifold, a recent article from the BMC blog From the Archives - Correspondence between West Sydney Singers & John Manifold


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 22 Oct 20 - 10:20 PM

BLACK SHEEP
(W.Ogilvie/G.Jenkin)

They shepherd the black sheep down to the ships
Society's banned and cursed
And the boys look back as the old land dips
Some with a reckless laugh on their lips
And some with a prayer reversed

Chorus:
And it's goodbye England, farewell love
Maybe it's just as well
When a man falls short of his heaven above
That he drops to the uttermost hell

Now the anchor lifts and the sails are set
Now God to your help, black sheep
For the gay world laughs, 'They will soon forget'
But fired with the embers of old regret
The brand of the world bites deep

Chorus

They turn the black sheep over the side
To land on a stranger's shore
To drift with the cities' human tide
Or wander away where the rovers ride
And the flagless legions war

Chorus

They bury the black sheep out in the bush
And they bury them none too deep
By the cattle camp or the last gold rush
And the grass grows over them deep and lush
And the bush winds sing them to sleep

Final chorus:
And it's goodbye sorrow, farewell strife
Maybe it's just as well
When a man goes down in the battle of life
Then he shortens his road to hell

Graham Jenkin put a tune to this Ogilvie poem - pp56-57 'Great Australian Balladists'. Note by Jenkin:

Black sheep were young Britons who had disgraced themselves in one way or another, and who were sent as far away as possible in order that they may not bring further disgrace on the family. Australia, being at the opposite end of the world to Britain, was an ideal dumping ground, just as it had been for convicts before them. The black sheep, unlike most of the convicts, came from the wealthy classes and were referred to as 'remittance men' because many of them received a regular remittance from their families as payment for staying here. Although Ogilvie was a migrant, he was not a black sheep. Harry Morant was, and so was Adam Lindsay Gordon.

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 22 Oct 20 - 07:53 PM

LONG RUN
(John Schumann)

You look out your window at the cold grey dawn 
It's seven o'clock on a Monday morning 
Pour a cup of coffee, better make it a strong one 
Weather man on the radio says 
It's going to rain and it's going to blow 
But i'll be all right, it'll be all right, it'll be all right in the long run 

Australia marched out of Vietnam 
Out on the streets against Uncle Sam, 
We won the fight, it was a long one 
Uranium demo the other day 
One of my mates got dragged away 
As they slammed the door I heard her say 
It'll be all right in the long run 

Italian bloke who works with me 
We swap laughs and company 
And he slapped me on the back 
Said, ’You're wrong, son 
This isn't the land I was told it would be 
It's not so equal and not so free
But i'll be all right, it'll be all right, it'll be all right in the long run’

From the shadow of history a convict screams 
The shearers curse, the people dream 
We've taken some right turns
They've been the wrong ones
Troop ships leave and the headlines blaze 
Australia remembers happier days 
And the faith lives on within the haze 
It'll be all right in the long run 

So you sit in your camp and you stare at the fire 
The doubts drop away as the hopes get higher 
And you sing to yourself 
It'll be all right, it'll be all right in the long run 

And the sun gives ground to a long cold night 
You screw your courage for another fight 
But you know in your heart 
That it’ll be all right, it'll be all right, it'll be all right in the long run 

And the sun streams in with power and might 
And you look at your kids in a different light 
And you know in your heart as you kiss them goodnight 
It'll be all right in the long run

Youtube clip

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 22 Oct 20 - 07:31 PM

POOR NED

Chorus:
Poor Ned, you're better off dead
At least you'll get some peace of mind
You're out on the track
They're right on your back
Boy, they're 'gonna hang you high

Eighteen hundred and seventy eight
Was the year I remember so well
They put my father in an early grave
Slung my mother in gaol
Now I don't know what's right or wrong
But they hung Christ on nails
Six kids at home and two still on the breast
They wouldn't even give her bail

Chorua

You know I wrote a letter
'Bout Stringybark Creek
So they would understand
That I might be a bushranger
But I'm not a murdering man
I didn't want to shoot Kennedy
Or that copper Lonnigan
He alone could have saved his life
By throwing down his gun

Chorus

You know they took Ned Kelly
And they hung him in the Melbourne gaol
He fought so very bravely
Dressed in iron mail
And no man single-handed
Can hope to break the bars
It's a thousand like Ned Kelly
Who'll hoist the flag of stars

Chorus

Those are the lyrics for Redgum's version which is probably the best-known one in Oz.

Redgum

For a full discussion of the provenance of this song check out this Mudcat thread, particularly the contributions by Bob Bolton:

Click

The Lucas/Fotheringay rendition:

Fotheringay

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 22 Oct 20 - 06:59 PM

STRINGYBARK CREEK
(Anon)

A sergeant and three constables set out from Mansfield town
Near the end of last October for to hunt the Kellys down
They started for the Wombat Hills and thought it quite a lark
When they camped upon the borders of a creek called Stringybark

They had grub and ammunition there to last them many a week,
And next morning two of them rode out, all to explore the creek,
Leaving Mclntyre behind them at the camp to cook the grub
And Lonergan to sweep the floor and boss the washing-tub.

It was shortly after breakfast Mac thought he heard a noise
So gun in hand he sallied out to try and find the cause,
But he never saw the Kellys planted safe behind a log
So he sauntered back to smoke and yarn and wire into the prog.

But Ned Kelly and his comrades thought they'd like a nearer look,
For being short of grub they wished to interview the cook;
And of firearms and cartridges they found they had too few,
So they longed to grab the pistols and ammunition too.

Both the troopers at a stump alone they were well pleased to see
Watching as the billies boiled to make their pints of tea;
There they joked and chatted gaily never thinking of alarms
Till they Heard the fearful cry behind, "Bail up, throw up your arms!"

The traps they started wildly and Mac then firmly stood
While Lonergan made tracks to try and gain the wood,
Reaching round for his revolver, but before he touched the stock
Ned Kelly pulled the trigger, fired, and dropped him like a rock.

Then after searching McIntyre all through the camp they went-
And cleared the guns and cartridges and pistols from the tent,
But brave Kelly muttered sadly as he loaded up his gun,
"Oh, what a ... pity that the ... tried to run."

'Twas later in the afternoon the sergeant and his mate
Came riding blithely through the bush to meet a cruel fate.
"The Kellys have the drop on you!" cried McIntyre aloud,
But the troopers took it as a joke and sat their horses proud.

Then trooper Scanlan made a move his rifle to unsling,
But to his heart a bullet sped and death was in the sting;
Then Kennedy leapt from his mount and ran for cover near,
And fought, a game man to the last, for all that life held dear.

The sergeant's horse raced from the camp alike from friend and foe,
And McIntyre, his life at stake, sprang to the saddle-bow
And galloped far into the night, a haunted, harassed soul,
Then like a hunted bandicoot hid in a wombat hole.

At dawn of day he hastened forth and made for Mansfield town
To break the news that made men vow to shoot the bandits down,
So from that hour the Kelly gang was hunted far and wide,
Like outlawed dingoes of the wild until the day they died.

Above is the full ballad as printed at pp41-42 of Times House edition of Stewart & Keesing's 'Australian Bush Ballads'. Most renditions are shortened and amended. Here is one by Gary Shearston:

Youtube clip

Another song about Stringybark Creek from John Munro's 'The Kelly Collection':

Click

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: GUEST
Date: 22 Oct 20 - 06:05 PM

Sandra, you have doubled up on 'Miner's washing'. R-J posted it in September - No 110 on your list.

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 22 Oct 20 - 12:44 AM

MINER'S WASHIN' © John Warner 10/08/92

I came from Durham in '99,
Married a laddie from the Coal Creek mine,
The finest lad that a girl could ever know,
Till he brought me his washin' from the pit below.

Scrubbing the miner's clothes,
Scrubbing the miner's clothes,
All piled up in a ghastly stack,
Heavy as lead, and smelly and black,
And oh the pain in my aching back,
Scrubbing the miner's clothes.

Now your Korumburra miner is a grimy sort of bloke,
So I drop in his duds for an all night soak.
I'll take me a soap and I'll grate it like a cheese,
And chuck it in a bucket with his grubby dungarees.

I get me up before the peep o' light
My copper for to fill and my fire for to light,
I'll serve Tom his crib while the copper's on the boil,
Then gird up my muscles for a day's hard toil.
It's drag 'em from the copper to the rinsing tub,
Pound 'em with the dolly and scrub, scrub, scrub,
Pour away the mucky water, do it all again,
Heave 'em through the wringer and pray it doesn't rain.

Beyond Kardella, the sky's looking fine,
Basket up the washing to the old clothes line,
I'll bet when it's hung out and I've heaved up the prop,
The rain'll come a pourin' and the wind will drop.

Now all you maidens who to marriage do incline,
Never wed a laddie from the Coal Creek mine,
A squatter might be surly, a merchant might be mean,
A banker might be boring, but they're easier to clean.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 22 Oct 20 - 12:38 AM

DRUNKS' EXPRESS © John Warner 6/04/93

I'll tell you all of the roaring day,
    In Korumburra town on a Friday.
From Jeetho out to Jumbunna way
Folks came in for to spend their pay
    In Korumburra town on a Friday.
The lads knocked off at the mining site,
To shop and gossip, drink and fight
From four o'clock till around midnight,
    In Korumburra town on a Friday.

    And it's 'Oh my darlin' Clementine',
    As the Drunks' Express lurches up the line,
    Taking the lads back to Outtrim Mine
    From Korumburra town on a Friday.

Now you could see it from the train ...
The miner's friend, the council's bane,
The sly grog shanty run by Kane ...
Now Old Kane was a cunning coot,
His whiskey source still in dispute,
And girls were there of strange repute ...

At one of the pubs where the miners meet ...
Comes the sound of voices raised in heat,
And a body hurled out onto the street ...
The body lies there, out for ten,
It looks like young Joe Kane again,
You shouldn't argue with mining men ...

Eleven o'clock and they close the bars ...
The drunks are singing to the moon and stars
As they pack them into the railway cars ...
Tomorrow they'll wake up sore and sick,
To work off with the shovel and pick,
The aches they've earned and the wounds they lick ...

The case is heard at ten o'clock ...
Now hear the courtroom gavel knock,
For young Joe Kane standing in the dock ...
Says Judge, 'A ten bob fine I think,
Or thirty days in the local clink,
For the things you did when worse for drink ...


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 22 Oct 20 - 12:33 AM

WILLIAM CONQUEST TURLAND another excellent song from John Warner (1995)

William Turland was a magnificent character who made his place in the history of Lambing Flat by pick and shovel: the first to pave the streets in front of his business, to plant shade-trees on the street, a baker, blacksmith, farrier, horsecoper and hotel owner, with a subtle touch at the sly grog still. The impression we gained of Hannah was of an equal and powerful influence. This story, from early in their lives, was told to John by Pat Emmett who was particularly moved by it. The town of Lambing Flat is now known as Young. The tune is a version of the Scarborough Settler's Laments.


I'm William Conquest Turland, and when I was young and bold,
I left old Market Harborough to mine Australian gold.
I saw the rebel banner hoist, the fight at Ballarat,
And I loved and married Hannah in the town of Lambing Flat.

I forged the picks, I shoed the hacks, I laboured in the heat,
My Hannah bore two children, we thought our joy complete,
Then gold was found at Grenfell, the Lachlan side nor'west,
And so, like fools drawn to a snare, we followed with the rest.

But fever took the children, their skins were clammy wet.
It turned like iron in the heart to hear them moan and fret.
We washed them, cooled them, prayed for them, and ached to hear their cries;
At length a sullen silence fell and the bitter drone of flies.

I dug two graves beside the creek where old Dick's bridge now stands,
And I can still feel Hannah's grasp a-trembling in my hands,
The road ahead holds children, home and labour, land and friend,
But I held Hannah, sobbing hard, where one road found its end.

So let the Lachlan keep its gold or others make their pile.
We'll go no further down this track, but tend their graves the while,
For earth can yield no fairer prize, however rich the lode
Than the wealth we gave back to the soil along the Grenfell road.


mudcatter Daniel Kelly singing William Conquest Turland


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 21 Oct 20 - 11:24 PM

Bugger, I did it again today and yesterday - I cleared web data after banking and forgot to log in again. Most of the 'Guest' posts to this thread are from yours truly. I will attempt to do better.

Another fine song from Bob McNeill with Kenny Rich, a Scot from Orkney who also made NZ home. The duo performed and recorded as Ben the Hoose. Their focus was mainly on Scottish traditional dance music. A note on the sleeve of their album 'a little cascade':

The people here are Scots. They stopped here on their way to heaven, thinking they had arrived.Mark Twain in NZ 1895.

NORWAY YAWL
(Bob McNeill)

There were men that my father knew
Worked oars as well as a plough
Strong men who came home like the waves on the shore
But these old men are all gone now

The Norway yawls lie tattered and broken
On the earth where these old men now lie
They have earned their sleep but I would keep hold
Of the life that with them has died

Chorus:
And there are no men left in Derry
None in Donegal
There are no men left on Islay
Build me a Norway yawl

They fished the grounds off Ardara
Took the herring from off Tory Isle
But the old men have all gone now
And we can't believe our time

Chorus

We have not the life of the fisherman
And our hardships are nothing besides
Our hands are not battered and frozen
Upon oars opposing the tide

Chorus

Ran the yawls from St John's to Port Ellen
Rathlin, Port Stewart and Glengad
Tory and Derry and Moville between
The lines that are part of our past

Chorus

Youtube clip

Note by Ben the Hoose:

The Norway yawls were open fishing boats built on the north coast of Ireland and inshore Scottish islands. The boats vanished from the water in the 1950s but are often seen on the coast, used as sheep shelters and the like. Donal MacPolin described the men who crewed them as 'the last waves on the seashore'.

Additional info:

In the case of the Norway yawl, these boats were entirely open and double-ended, that is sharp at both stem and stern. Dimensions for this type varied slightly, but they usually had a keel length of 18-20 feet with a beam of 5.5-6 feet. (McCaughan, 1982, 178) The yawls were primarily used for line fishing and rowed with four oars but often set a lug or sprit sail. (Joe McClean, oral evidence) Norway yawls were regarded as safe, service-able boats and could be easily hauled out of the water by two men. (Malcolm Collins, oral evidence) As the name suggests these boats were imported direct from Norway but were modified in Ireland by the addition of one or two 'strakes'. (McCaughan, 1982, 176) Commentators have suggested that by the 1840's these boats were in some areas coming to the end of their working lives. The explanation was believed to lie in the decline of the timber trade with Norway brought on by raising duties on Baltic timber. (Davis, 1979, 46) This effected the shipment of Norway yawls as they were brought in with the timber cargoes.
From here

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: GUEST
Date: 21 Oct 20 - 09:48 PM

CLAIR
(W.Evans/Trad)

The diggings are silent, the miners have gone
Far away, far away, far away, who knows where
But I cling to the silence where once the sun shone
On my dear love, my true love, my own love, my Clair
    
It’s wicked for women whose menfolk seek gold
Far away, far away, far away in the wild
In the scorch of the summer and winter’s sharp cold
With my family, my dear wife, and my only child
    
Our shanty was sacking on a mulga wood frame
Far away, far away, far away city lights
But my Clair made it homely and she never complained
Of the hardships, discomfort and darkness and frights
    
My little one faded, my Clair also died
Far away, far away, far away without aid
For my gold fever killed them, I sat and I cried
For their pardon, with sorrow, for long I have paid
     
Now the diggings are silent, I stay here alone
Far away, far away, far away with my Clair
And the gold that I glean gilds the roughly hewn stone
For my whole life, my Clair, and my dear child lie there

Recitation of poem by Wendy Evans with instrumental backing:

Youtube clip

--Stewie. 


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 21 Oct 20 - 08:44 PM

A PROUDER MAN THAN YOU
(Henry Lawson)

If you fancy that your people came of better stock than mine
If you hint of higher breeding by a word or by a sign
If you're proud because of fortune or the clever things you do
Then I'll play no second fiddle: I'm a prouder man than you

If you think that your profession has the more gentility
And that you are condescending to be seen along with me
If you notice that I'm shabby while your clothes are spruce and new
You have only got to hint it: I'm a prouder man than you

If you have a swell companion when you see me on the street
And you think that I'm too common for your toney friend to meet
So that I, in passing closely, fail to come within your view
Then be blind to me for ever: I'm a prouder man than you

If your character be blameless, if your outward past be clean
While 'tis known my antecedents are not what they should have been
Do not risk contamination, save your name whatever you do
`Birds o' feather fly together': I'm a prouder bird than you

Keep your patronage for others, gold and station cannot hide
Friendship that can laugh at fortune, friendship that can conquer pride
Offer this as to an equal -- let me see that you are true
And my wall of pride is shattered: I am not so proud as you

Youtube clip

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 21 Oct 20 - 08:19 PM

Sandra, R-J sent me a copy of your list. Many thanks. Here is a link to Schumann's rendition of 'Second class wait here'.

John Schumann & Vagabonds

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 21 Oct 20 - 05:22 AM

Bluey Brink from Mark Gregory's Australian Folk Songs

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

video by 4 Bush Music Club members led by Doug (who was born in America in case you noticed his accent!)


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 21 Oct 20 - 05:09 AM

Henry Lawson - On The Night Train

Have you seen the bush by moonlight, from the train, go running by?
Blackened log and stump and sapling, ghostly trees all dead and dry;
Here a patch of glassy water; there a glimpse of mystic sky?
Have you heard the still voice calling — yet so warm, and yet so cold:
“I’m the Mother-Bush that bore you! Come to me when you are old”

Did you see the Bush below you sweeping darkly to the Range,
All unchanged and all unchanging, yet so very old and strange!
While you thought in softened anger of the things that did estrange?
Did you hear the Bush a-calling, when your heart was young and bold:
“I’m the Mother-Bush that nursed you; come to me when you are old"

In the cutting or the tunnel, out of sight of stock or shed,
Did you hear the grey Bush calling from the pine-ridge overhead:
“You have seen the seas and cities — all is cold to you, or dead —
All seems done and all seems told, but the grey-light turns to gold!
I’m the Mother-Bush that loves you — come to me now you are old”

Henry's last poem

my favourite version On the night train, download here from Chloe & Jason's website support live music!

Slim Dusty's version on youtube


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 21 Oct 20 - 04:50 AM

SECOND CLASS WAIT HERE by Henry Lawson, 1899 (tune Tony Miles, 1981 as sung by Margaret Walters on "For the Future and the Past")

On suburban railway stations - you may see them as you pass
There are signboards on the platforms saying, 'Wait here second class';
And to me the whirr and thunder and the cluck of running gear
Seem to be for ever saying, saying 'Second class wait here'

Chorus -
Wait here second class, second class wait here
Seem to be for ever saying, saying 'Second class wait here

And the second class were waiting in the days of serf and prince,
And the second class are waiting - they've been waiting ever since.
There are gardens in the background, and the line is bare and drear,
Yet they wait beneath a signboard, sneering 'Second class wait here'

I have waited oft in winter, in the mornings dark and damp,
When the asphalt platform glistened underneath the lonely lamp.
Ghastly on the brick-faced cutting 'Sellum's Soap' and 'Blower's Beer;
Ghastly on enamelled signboards with their 'Second class wait here'

And the others seemed like burglars, slouched and muffled to the throats,
Standing round apart and silent in their shoddy overcoats,
And the wind among the wires, and the poplars bleak and bare,
Seemed to be for ever snarling, snarling 'Second class wait there'

Out beyond the further suburb, 'neath a chimney stack alone,
Lay the works of Grinder Brothers, with a platform of their own;
And I waited there and suffered, waited there for many a year,
Slaved beneath a phantom signboard, telling our class to wait here.

Ah! a man must feel revengeful for a boyhood such as mine.
God! I hate the very houses near the workshop by the line;
And the smell of railway stations, and the roar of running gear,
And the scornful-seeming signboards, saying 'Second class wait here'

There's a train with Death for driver, which is ever going past,
And there are no class compartments, and we all must go at last
To the long white jasper platform with an Eden in the rear;
And there won't be any signboards, saying 'Second class wait here'


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 21 Oct 20 - 04:41 AM

Poor Dim Sally is no. 342, & I'll send you the list.

Australia's greatest song AS ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED in The Bacchus Marsh Express Sat 15th December, 1891 - note the last line was bowdlerised, so please sing the proper word in the famous version!!

THE BARE BELLED EWE by C.C. of Eynesbury, Nov. 20, (tune - Ring the bell, Watchman)

Oh, down at the catching pen an old shearer stands,
Grasping his shears in his long bony hands ;
Fixed is his gaze on a bare belled ewe,
Saying " If I can only get her, won't I make the ringer go."

Click goes his shears; click, click, click.
Wide are the blows, and his hand is moving quick,
The ringer looks round, for he lost it by a blow,
And he curses that old shearer with the bare belled ewe.

At the end of the board, in a cane bottomed chair,
The boss remains seated with his eyes everywhere ;
He marks well each fleece as it comes to the screen,
And he watches where it comes from if not taken off clean.

The "colonial experience" is there of course.
With his silver buckled leggings, he's just off his horse ;
With the air of a connoiseur he walks up the floor ;
And he whistles that sweet melody, "I am a perfect cure."

"So master new chum, you may now begin,
Muster number seven paddock, bring the sheep all in ;
Leave none behind you, whatever you do,
And then we'll say you'r fit to be a Jackeroo."

The tar boy is there, awaiting all demands,
With his black tarry stick, in his black tarry hands.
He sees an old ewe, with a cut upon the back,
He hears what he supposes is--" Tar here, Jack."

"Tar on the back, Jack; Tar, boy, tar."
Tar from the middle to both ends of the board.
Jack jumps around, for he has no time to sleep,
And tars the shearer's backs as well as the sheep.

So now the shearing's over, each man has got his cheque,
The hut is as dull as the dullest old wreck ;
Where was many a noise and bustle only a few hours before,
Now you can hear it plainly if a pin fall on the floor.

The shearers now are scattered many miles and far ;
Some in other sheds perhaps, singing out for "tar."
Down at the bar, there the old shearer stands,
Grasping his glass in his long bony hands.

Saying "Come on, landlord, come on, come !
I'm shouting for all hands, what's yours--mine's a rum ;"
He chucks down his cheque, which is collared in a crack,
And the landlord with a pen writes no mercy on the back !

His eyes they were fixed on a green painted keg,
Saying " I will lower your contents, before I move a peg."
His eyes are on the keg, and are now lowering fast ;
He works hard, he dies hard, and goes to heaven at last.

C. C. Eynesbury, Nov. 20, 1891.

As performed on ABC Landline by Jason & Chloe Roweth in 2014 after Mark Gregory discovered the original on TROVE. Jason reported that after the filming the shearers suggested Mr Folksinger join them shearing, thinking he was just a city folksinger, but he has worked in a shearing shed & done a little (tiny) bit of shearing.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: rich-joy
Date: 20 Oct 20 - 11:25 PM

I can recommend, Stewie, a good Pommy show I just watched last night on YT (don't recall it being on Oz TV), based on a 1920s true story, called "Dandelion Dead" in 2 Eps over less than 4 hours, but starring the always EXcellent Michael Kitchen & Sarah Miles!!! People are still, to this day, debating whether the main man was guilty or not ......

I will return to song posts on this thread, but I seem to have found a few more urgent things to do!

But I wonder whether Joe could be persuaded to amend the thread title to include reference to New Zealand???

And if the excellent Sandra in Sydney could be persuaded to update the Song Listing??!!


Cheers, R-J


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Oct 20 - 10:40 PM

My apologies, the video linked in my previous post is not the Mike Harding to whom I was referring. I was referring to the pommy Mike Harding. I'm losing it. I think I'll go downstairs into the air-conditioning with my dog and watch a pommy police drama dvd.

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Oct 20 - 10:30 PM

Seems like I'm on my Pat. Never mind - onwards. Another cracker from the wonderful Kath Tait.

POOR DIM SALLY
(Kath Tait)

Poor dim Sally from old Vim valley
She was taken in by the Moonies
Her friends said they would rather be dead
Than sucked in by a bunch of loonies
Her mother cried and her father nearly died
To see their Sally being hypnotised
And listening to strange philosophical lies
And giving all her money to the guru

While dancing to the tune of the Reverend Moon
Sally was benevolent and breezy
But it made her sad to see her mum and her dad
Being hypnotised by the TV
And giving all their money to the politicians
Who wasted it all on their greedy ambitions
And Sally was obsessed by her dubious position
Enlisting more disciples for the guru

Poor dim Sally from old Vim valley
She went knocking on doors
Explaining her views and proclaiming the news
And naming the Moonies' laws
When she came upon a mysterious charmer
Who appeared at the door in his pink pajama
And talked her into following the Dalai Lama
And that's how she was rescued from the Moonies

Sally took a ferry to a monastery
Where upon she shaved her head.
Her mother cried and her father said , 'Why
Is our Sally so easily led?'
The deprogrammers came to unravel her brain
But their threats and bribes were all in vain,
And her poor mother she did proclaim
Why can't we all just be nice Presbyterians

Now poor dim Sally from old Vim valley
Was told to spend eleven days fasting
But her need for food was so basic and crude
And she really wasn't very good at lasting
When they found her hiding behind a tree
With a marmite sandwich and a cup of tea
She said,’I wouldn't be a failure spiritually
If I was the leader of my very own religion’

So she became the guru of her own fringe sect
She got all of the money and all of the respect
And she made her disciples swear an oath
To eat their way to spiritual growth
Have another sausage roll, have another cream bun
She said sitting there on her big fat bum
They said, ‘We’ll all be saved from being eternally glum
In Sally's own original religion’

Kath’s note:

Having been involved in a disreputable fringe sect when I was much younger, I decided to read a few sociological studies on the phenomenon. I discovered that they are all much the same, they all involve some sort of guru/con-artist and they all end up committing some kind of abuse involving sex or money. I have learnt the hard way that you have to be your own guru.

Vim is a bathroom cleaning powder. The phrase Vim valley is a common New Zealand term describing a squeaky clean suburb where people behave a bit like they do in household appliance advertisements.

Mike Harding covered the song. I always fondly remember Mike's visit to Darwin on his Australian tour back in the day. At his gun turret concert, he said that visiting Darwin was like living in someone's sweaty sock. A fair comment - the humidity here at the moment is horrendous.

Youtube clip

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 19 Oct 20 - 09:37 PM

I don't know where those ?s came from. Anyhow, the lyrics are there.

A song about the possible inspiration for Miss Havisham:

THE BALLAD OF ELIZA EMILY DONNITHORNE
(J.Armstrong)

She stands at the window watching the carriages
Approaching the house in the spring of the year
She smiles at the people hurrying everywhere
Lovely Eliza’s wedding draws near
In the fine mansion in King St in Newtown
Beautiful ladies, some haughty, some gay
With horses and carriages, the cream of old Sydney Town
Lovely Eliza gets married today

Over the fireplace, a portrait in oils
Old Judge Donnithorne looks kindly down
Sees his young daughter, the flower of Sydney Town
Looking lovelier than ever in her wedding gown
But something is wrong - the smiles are fading
The hours are passing, the people must go
Eliza still stands and she looks from her window
Waiting in tears for the man she loves so

The table is set still, the places are counted
But gone are the people so laughing and gay
The gifts are unopened and tired of waiting
The beautiful wedding cake crumbles away
The old house is closed now, the windows are shuttered
Nobody leaves and nobody comes near
Eliza grows old now but still in her wedding dress
She faithfully waits for her love to appear

Thirty years pass now - the waiting is over
Six fine black horses await at the door
The beautiful carriage is decked in black ribbons
Lovely Eliza will wait here no more
She’s seeking a new world to search for her lover
If she will find him nobody can tell
She’s a young girl again, happy and carefree
Eliza Emily Donnithorne farewell

Youtube clip

Eliza Emily Donnithorne

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 19 Oct 20 - 09:18 PM

I OWE YOU
(Paul Metsers)

Have you still got those pages?
From friends of days gone by
Their words, in paper cages
?Came winging through the sky?
Or did you make some bargain?
That one day you would rue
?Like the hasty note the gambler wrote
The loser’s I.O.U.

It seems the days are speeding
The time it strips the bone?
The snow it falls beside the wall
And follows winter’s moan
And through the crystal window
The ever-changing hue?
The years decline, the debt is mine
How will I pay my due

I.O.U. for mystery
?I.O.U. for colour
?I.O.U. for children?
Born in love and labour
And I.O.U. for letting go
When parting needs must sever
And I.O.U. for holding on
I.O.U. forever

They say no one’s an island
That each on some depends
But lonely hearts and silence
Make such bitter friends
For to have your own true lover
Is to live in fortune’s glow
But try as you may, you’ll never pay
Your lover what you owe

I.O.U. for mystery
?I.O.U. for colour?
I.O.U. for children
?Born in love and labour
And I.O.U. for letting go
When parting needs must sever
And I.O.U. for holding on
I.O.U. forever

Youtube clip

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 19 Oct 20 - 08:20 PM

Another fine Kiwi singer/songwriter with a song about an incident on Norfolk Island in the 1840s.

EMILY BAY
(Andrew London)

Johnny was a wild one, got sent down
Seven years hard in Sydney Town
Tura-lura-lura-luralie-ayElizabeth cried on the dock, says he,
‘You’re a good girl, Lizzie, don’t you wait for me’
Tura-lura-lura-luralie-ay

Johnny was a thief, he was quicker than some
Got caught with a bottle of the captain’s rum
And the blood runs down to the sand on Emily Bay
And the blood runs down to the sand on Emily Bay

Judge said, ‘I can turn a hard man around
You can do your time out in Kingston Town’
Tura-lura-lura-luralie-ay
Johnny said, ‘ Well you can cut a chain for me
But I’ll curse your eyes till the day that I’m free
Tura-lura-lura-luralie-ay

Johnny took a hundred till the blood ran black
And the chaplain said, ‘That’s a dead man’s back’
And the blood runs down to the sand on Emily Bay
And the blood runs down to the sand on Emily Bay

Jackie said, ‘Now brother come along with me
Gonna kill me a copper been a-worryin’ me’
Tura-lura-lura-luralie-ay
Johnny said, ‘Well Jack I been a thinkin’ just the same’
And they got three more before the soldiers came
Tura-lura-lura-luralie-ay

The commandant said, ‘You’re gonna hang this morn
And England’s sorry that you ever been born
And the blood runs down to the sand on Emily Bay
And the blood runs down to the sand on Emily Bay

Johnny was a wild one, got sent down
He never did a year in Kingston Town
Tura-lura-lura-luralie-ay
Elizabeth cried on the day she read
He was thrown in a hole, not a prayer was said
Tura-lura-lura-luralie-ay

And on the Murderers’ Mound, you can hear his plea:
‘You’re a good girl, Lizzie, don’t you wait for me’
And the blood runs down to the sand on Emily Bay
And the blood runs down to the sand on Emily Bay

Youtube clip

Bob McNeill does a lovely cover of the song with Gillian Boucher on fiddle:

Click

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 19 Oct 20 - 07:43 PM

R-J, thanks for the correction. I don't have the album. I would have sworn it was Lloyd singing. It must be deliberate on Shearston's part.

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: rich-joy
Date: 19 Oct 20 - 02:39 AM

Stew, I have to disagree with the label of A.L.Lloyd singing "The Murrumbidgee Shearer" that you linked to - it is definitely Gary Shearston in his folk-sheep-shearing-Lloyd style of singing, as on that whole LP of "The Springtime It Brings on the Shearing"!!
I still have my LP and absolutely loved it years ago :)

Cheers, R-J


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 18 Oct 20 - 08:43 PM

THE MARYBOROUGH MINER

Come all you sons of liberty and listen to my song
I'll tell you my observations and it won't take very long
I've fossicked around this continent, five hundred miles or more
And many's the time I might have starved but for the cheek I bore

I've been on all the diggings, boys, from famous Ballarat
I've long-tommed on the Lachlan, and I've fossicked Lambing Flat
So you can understand, my boys, just from my little rhyme
I'm a Maryborough miner and I'm one of the good old time

I came to the Fitzroy River, all with my Bendigo rig
I had a shovel, a pick and a pan, and for a licence I begged
But the assay man called me a loafer, said for work I'd no desire
And so to do him justice, boys, I set his office on fire

Oh yes, my jolly jokers, I've done it on the cross
Although I carry my bluey now, I've sweated many a horse
I've helped to rob the escort of many an ounce of gold
And the traps have trailed upon my tail more times than I've ever told

Oh yes, the traps have trailed me and been frightened out of their stripes
They never could have caught me for, they feared my cure for gripes
And well they knew I carried it, for they had often seen it
Glistening in my flipper, chaps, my patent pill machine

I'm one of the men who cradled on the reef at Tarrangower
Anxiety and misery my grim companions there
I puddled the clay at Bendigo and I chanced my arm at Kew
And I wound up my avocation with ten years on Cockatoo.

A.L. Lloyd collected this mining version of 'The Murrumbidgee Shearer' from Bob Bell in Condobolin in 1934.

Youtube clip

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 18 Oct 20 - 08:17 PM

THE MURRUMBIDGEE SHEARER

Come all you jolly natives and I'll relate to you
Some of my observations adventures too a few
I've travelled about the country for miles full many a score
And oft-times would have hungered but for the cheek I bore

I've coasted on the Barwon low down the Darling too
I've been on the Murrumbidgee and out on the Paroo
I've been on all the diggings boys from famous Ballarat
I've loafed upon the Lachlan and fossicked Lambing Flat

I went up to a squatter and asked him for a feed
But the knowledge of my hunger was swallowed by his greed
He said I was a loafer and for work had no desire
And so to do him justice I set his shed on fire

Oh yes I've touched the shepherd's hut of sugar, tea, and flour
And a tender bit of mutton I always could devour
I went up to a station and there I got a job
Plunged in the store and hooked it with a very tidy lob

Oh, yes my jolly dandies I've done it on the cross
Although I carry bluey now I've sweated many a horse
I've helped to ease the escort of many's the ounce of gold
The traps have often chased me more times than can be told

Oh yes the traps have chased me and been frightened of their stripes
They never could have caught me they feared my cure for gripes
And well they knew I carried it which they had often seen
A-glistening in my flipper chaps a patent pill machine

I've been hunted like a panther into my mountain lair
Anxiety and misery my grim companions there
I've planted in the scrub my boys and fed on kangaroo
And wound up my avocations by ten years on Cockatoo

So you can understand my boys just from this little rhyme
I'm a Murrumbidgee shearer and one of the good old time

From Paterson's 'Old Bush Songs'. This video supposedly has the singing of Gary Shearston, but actually it is Bert Lloyd:

Youtube clip

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: Stewie
Date: 18 Oct 20 - 07:28 PM

TUAPECKA GOLD
(Phil Garland)

'Twas in the year of sixty-two as near as I can guess
When I left my dear old hometown in trouble and distress
My family didn't want me I was left out in the cold
Until I started searching for the Tuapeka gold

The day I left Dunedin I could not help but cry
For not one single person came to bid myself goodbye
So I set off on my journey and soon I did behold
The hills that were covered with the Tuapeka gold

When some six months later I came back to my home town
Carrying the fortune that I'd taken from the ground
Strange to say my old friends turned out to say hello
But I knew all they were after was my Tuapeka gold.

The other day while walking I met young Maggie Brown
Who once took all my money while I was sleeping sound
Says she, 'Come to my bedside, we'll be lovers as of old'
But says I, You don't love me but my Tuapeka gold'

So come all you bold young fellows and attend to my advice
And don't trust man nor woman 'til you've looked them over twice
I've travelled for experience and many a time been sold
Ah-ha, but this time they won't get me nor my Tuapeka gold

See also 'Bright Fine Gold' posted above on 30 September. Gabriel Read discovered a large deposit of alluvial gold along the Tuapecka River in Otago in May 1861. Within a week of his reporting the find to authorities in Dunedin, a city of tents appeared along the banks of the Tuapecka.

Youtube clip

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
From: GUEST
Date: 18 Oct 20 - 05:39 AM

OLD PALMER SONG (Traditional) Above/below. From Wikipedia;

Ten Thousand Miles Away is a sea shanty whose writing and composition are attributed to Joseph B. Geoghegan. In his Shanties from the Seven Seas Hugill says that this was originally a shore ballad sung by street singers in Ireland in the early nineteenth century. Later it became a popular music hall number. The Scottish Student's Song Book gives the author as "J. B. Geoghegan". This is Joseph Bryan Geoghegan (c. 1816 – 1889) who was manager of the Star and Museum Music Hall in Bolton, Lancashire.

The song is numbered 1778 in the Roud Folk Song Index and it has been passed from singer to singer as a traditional shanty. The figure of "ten thousand miles" could well refer to the distance between England and Australia, and the separation of the lovers arises because the singer's lover has been transported.

So blow the winds, Heigh-ho; A roving I will go,
I'll stay no more on England's shore, So let the music play!
I'll start by the morning train, To cross the raging main,
For I'm on the move to my own true love, Ten thousand miles away.


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