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Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole

DigiTrad:
DAHN THE PLUG'OLE


Related threads:
Norf and Sarf - cockney songs (72)
Lyr Req: Alice, where are you going? Upstairs to.. (59)
Lyr Req: A Mother's Lament / Dahn the Plug'ole (21)
Anybody know this song? Baby Down Plughole (31)
Lyr Req: Dahn the Plug Hole (14)
Tune Add: Dahn the Plug'ole / Down the Plughole (6)


GUEST,Pat Wilson 30 Mar 00 - 11:43 PM
alison 30 Mar 00 - 11:50 PM
Joe Offer 31 Mar 00 - 12:58 AM
Garry Gillard 31 Mar 00 - 06:22 AM
vindelis 31 Mar 00 - 10:32 AM
harpgirl 31 Mar 00 - 11:50 AM
Jim Krause 31 Mar 00 - 12:01 PM
Bert 31 Mar 00 - 12:55 PM
Susan of DT 31 Mar 00 - 08:58 PM
Greg F. 31 Mar 00 - 09:58 PM
vindelis 01 Apr 00 - 08:35 AM
Liz the Squeak 01 Apr 00 - 05:36 PM
GUEST,Michele 01 Apr 00 - 07:21 PM
Brakn 01 Apr 00 - 08:43 PM
alison 01 Apr 00 - 09:29 PM
The Beanster 01 Apr 00 - 09:46 PM
Duane D. 01 Apr 00 - 10:32 PM
GUEST,Pat Wilson 04 Apr 00 - 09:24 PM
jofield 05 Apr 00 - 12:08 AM
Mark Cohen 05 Apr 00 - 12:18 AM
GUEST,Roger the skiffler 05 Apr 00 - 11:22 AM
Joe Offer 05 Apr 00 - 04:23 PM
Garry Gillard 29 Mar 01 - 02:32 AM
GUEST,mikweardale 29 Mar 01 - 03:27 AM
dick greenhaus 29 Mar 01 - 05:20 PM
GUEST 29 Mar 01 - 08:42 PM
CRANKY YANKEE 29 Mar 01 - 09:21 PM
GUEST,amanda hamilton (age 12) 22 Dec 06 - 11:05 PM
Bert 23 Dec 06 - 02:01 AM
John MacKenzie 23 Dec 06 - 03:52 AM
GUEST 23 Dec 06 - 05:23 AM
Peace 23 Dec 06 - 05:29 AM
Azizi 23 Dec 06 - 07:47 AM
McGrath of Harlow 23 Dec 06 - 08:22 AM
GUEST,Ben Daglish 05 Feb 07 - 11:44 AM
Murray MacLeod 05 Feb 07 - 03:37 PM
GUEST,JTT 06 Feb 07 - 03:33 AM
McGrath of Harlow 06 Feb 07 - 03:38 PM
SINSULL 28 Feb 08 - 03:41 PM
The Fooles Troupe 28 Feb 08 - 10:47 PM
Ross Campbell 29 Feb 08 - 12:58 AM
iancarterb 29 Feb 08 - 01:18 AM
pavane 29 Feb 08 - 02:28 AM
pavane 29 Feb 08 - 04:11 AM
GUEST,The Mole Catcher's unplugged Apprentice 29 Feb 08 - 04:09 PM
The Fooles Troupe 29 Aug 08 - 07:31 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 29 Aug 08 - 08:08 PM
Gurney 30 Aug 08 - 12:29 AM
Jim Dixon 01 Sep 08 - 12:39 PM
GUEST,My name isn't Anna May, but who is checking 27 Feb 10 - 11:47 PM
GUEST,basenjimum 06 Mar 10 - 01:37 PM
GUEST,bernadette 02 Dec 16 - 04:29 PM
Mrrzy 02 Dec 16 - 10:00 PM
Ross Campbell 03 Dec 16 - 12:46 AM
Joe Offer 03 Dec 16 - 02:38 AM
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Subject: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: GUEST,Pat Wilson
Date: 30 Mar 00 - 11:43 PM

Does anyone have the words or know of a website where I can access this moving piece of deathless poetry. I think its origins are in Music Hall.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: alison
Date: 30 Mar 00 - 11:50 PM

It is in the database but it is hard to find because of the spelling Dahn the plug'ole

Welcome to mudcat

slainte

alison


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Joe Offer
Date: 31 Mar 00 - 12:58 AM

You found that song awful darn fast, Alison. I think I should worry for your children. Is THAT what you think of your kids? Poor dears.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Garry Gillard
Date: 31 Mar 00 - 06:22 AM

As sung by Martin Carthy!

See: here.

Garry


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Subject: ADD: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: vindelis
Date: 31 Mar 00 - 10:32 AM

Is this what you're after? this is the music hall version:

    A mother was washing her baby one night
    The youngest of twelve and a delicate mite

    The mother was poor and the baby was thin
    He was nowt but a Skellington covered in ski-in

    The mother turned round for the soap off the rack
    She was only a moment but when she turned back

    Her baby had gorn, and in anguish she cried
    "Oh where has my baby gorn?" The Angels repli-hied

    Your baby has gone down the plug hole
    Your baby has gone down the plug

    The poor little thing was so skinny and thin
    He should have been washed in a jug

    Your baby is perfickly happy
    He won't need a bath any more

    He'a splashing about with the angels above
    Not lost but gone before


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: harpgirl
Date: 31 Mar 00 - 11:50 AM

oh joy! a music thread without the annoying monopolizers on it and with interesting comments from some beloved forum individuals...


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Jim Krause
Date: 31 Mar 00 - 12:01 PM

That's the one I remember listening to on the Cream's LP Disraeli Gears when I was in highschool. Egad!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Bert
Date: 31 Mar 00 - 12:55 PM

Harpgirl, I'm SURPRISED at you!! Posting an irrelevant message on a music thread. Shame on you, tsk, tsk.

Gotcha! ;-)

Bert. (who loves you really, but just couldn't let that one go.)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Susan of DT
Date: 31 Mar 00 - 08:58 PM

Hint for searchers:

pick a characteristic word that isn't apt to be mis-spelled. Search for that.

F'rinstance (in this instance) "plug*" (the asterisk takes care of the possibility of plughole being one word) gets you 28 hits, with a smidgeon of easily recognizable text for each one. 28 titles (and phrases) isn't

really

a major chore to search through.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Greg F.
Date: 31 Mar 00 - 09:58 PM

Anyone have any additional info on the history of this song? or what period it dates to? I'd always assumed 1890's-

Thanks!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: vindelis
Date: 01 Apr 00 - 08:35 AM

As I have heard it on a B.B.C. T.V. programme called 'The Good Old Days', which was hosted by a rather exhuberant chap, by the name of, Leonard Sachs, I think you can be safe to assume that it is from the music hall period. The programme mentioned was composed, entirely of music hall material. Good luck with your search.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 01 Apr 00 - 05:36 PM

There may be more info in the Great British Song Book, but my copy has gone awol again. If I find it, I'll let you know. I do know that at least one version has bathing instead of washing, pronounce "barfing" - perhaps that's why it changed....

Funny, we were only singing this to the SOS (Spawn Of Satan - don't even ask) the other night - she likes the tune, but is far too ..... robust.... to go down the plug, unless it is one of those on the Hoover Dam....

Best sung in a Dick Van Dyke cockney accent - as in: moy bie-by as gorn darn ther plahgole, moy bie-by as gorn darn the plahg.....

LTS


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: GUEST,Michele
Date: 01 Apr 00 - 07:21 PM

Oh my.. my group or should I say one of our members sings this horrid song ..terribly off key and with such emotion it would make you sick..(hehe) it has become the song where i quickly take leave to powder my nose or just disappear for a moment. ( truth is I cant stand to hear him sing it (grin)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Brakn
Date: 01 Apr 00 - 08:43 PM

Dick Van Dyke? I don't think so!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: alison
Date: 01 Apr 00 - 09:29 PM

Joe,

I used to sing this with the brownies.... good camp fire song.....

slainte

alison


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: The Beanster
Date: 01 Apr 00 - 09:46 PM

I thought this song was going to be the one about:

"Alice, where are you going?"
"Upstairs, to take a bath"

and then, oh my goodness, oh my soul, there goes Alice down the hole! hahahahaa Does anyone have lyrics for this one?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Duane D.
Date: 01 Apr 00 - 10:32 PM

A recorded source, if it's still in print for "Dahn the Plughole," is "spencer the rover is alive and well and living in ithaca," on Swallowtail Records, featuring John Roberts and Tony Barrand. (I have it on vinyl.)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: GUEST,Pat Wilson
Date: 04 Apr 00 - 09:24 PM

Thanks everyone. I realise now of course that I knew this song all the time, having taken it in from birth. I'd just temporarily forgotten it. I can't think why!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: jofield
Date: 05 Apr 00 - 12:08 AM

My parents used to have a set of Morrie Amsterdam 78s (the same Morrie Amsterdam who later became Dick Van Dyke's sidekick on the TV show -- cosmic, huh?) which contained his version of this tune. He sang "your baby has gone down the drainpipe". There were several pretty funny tunes in the set: a mock-calypso called "True, Mon, True", a song full of puns ("They say that a pun is the lowest form of wit, and tho' they may be half-right..."), "Saloon", and a "meller-drama" in song. Anyone else ever hear this set?

James.


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Subject: Anna May, Where Are You Going?
From: Mark Cohen
Date: 05 Apr 00 - 12:18 AM

Beanster:

Anna May, where are you going?
Upstairs, to take a bath
Anna May, with legs like toothpicks
And a neck like a giraffe
Anna May stepped into the bathtub
Anna May pulled out the plug
Oh my goodness, oh my soul
There goes Anna May down the hole!
Anna May?
Anna May!
(glug)

Of course, I'm reaching way back for that one, which I learned from my younger sister, and it's one of those that probably has many versions, but that's the way it was in northeast Philadelphia, 1965 or so. (My sister's best friend was named Annabelle, and immediately became Anna May after this song became known, much to her chagrin.)

Aloha,
Mark


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: GUEST,Roger the skiffler
Date: 05 Apr 00 - 11:22 AM

[Thread creep warning:] In my wife's family there is a saying: "as daft as your Uncle Horace". I never met him (her grandfather's brother) but apparently he was once found by the outside drain where the pipe from the bathroom came out, holding a colander under the spout. When asked what he was doing he replied that his wife (who was notoriously skinny) was taking a bath and he was getting ready to catch her! I don't know how long he had been waiting for someone to see him and ask him! [And you think I go to great lengths to work a joke in!].
? I think the zanier 'Catters would have found him a soul mate}!
Well it does tie in with this song
RtS


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Joe Offer
Date: 05 Apr 00 - 04:23 PM

Hi, Beanster- this being the Mudcat Cafe, font of all folk knowledge, we have a thread on Alice, Where Are You Going?
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Garry Gillard
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 02:32 AM

I can now say with confidence that Martin Carthy sang this on Hootenanny and that there is, or was, a record to prove it - thanks to The Carthy Chronicles.

Garry


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: GUEST,mikweardale
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 03:27 AM

the 60s group cream recorded this as Mothers Lament on the album Disraeli Gears


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 05:20 PM

Roberts and Barrand's "Spencer the Rover" is about to be re-released on CD. Camsco will have it as soon as it's out. Hint. Hint.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: GUEST
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 08:42 PM

Clockwise or counterclockwise? Dr. Coriolis wants to know if his theory works.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: CRANKY YANKEE
Date: 29 Mar 01 - 09:21 PM

A Mother was bathing her baby one night
The yongest of ten and a poor little mite
The mother was poor and the baby was thin
It was only a skeleton covered with skin.
?

The mother turned 'round for the soap from the rack,
'Twas only a moment but when she looked back.
The baby was gone and in anguish, she cried,
"Oh, Where is my baby?
amd the Angels replied,

"Your baby has gone down the Plug hole"
Your Baby has gone down the Plug"
The poor little thing was so skinny and thin"
"He should have been washed in a ju-u-u-u-ug"
Your baby is perfectly happy, and he wont need a bath, no more"
"He suffered no pain as he slid down the drain
"Not lost, but gone before".

This version is a lot neater than the one in the Digitrad I learned it from Wally Whyton of the "Vipers Skiffle Group".
Melody is, "oNLY A BIRD IN A GILDED CAGE"


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Subject: Amanda Sue
From: GUEST,amanda hamilton (age 12)
Date: 22 Dec 06 - 11:05 PM

Amanda Sue, where are you going?
Down the hall, to take a bath
Amanda Sue, with legs like toothpicks
And a neck like a giraffe
Amanda Sue stepped into the tub
Amanda Sue pulled out the plug
Oh my goodness, oh my soul
There goes Amanda down the hole!
Amanda Sue?
Amanda Sue?
Where the heck are you!
Amanda Sue slipped on the soap
And then her leg was surely broke!
Amanda Sue saw a nurse
Then I asked for my purse
I opened it up and what I saw
Was a ticket to the mall
When the docter finally came
I Bowed my head in shame
He asked me how it got broke
I slipped on a bar of soap!
I went upstairs to take a bath
And well you do the math!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Bert
Date: 23 Dec 06 - 02:01 AM

Hey! NICE ONE Amanda.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 23 Dec 06 - 03:52 AM

Was that the album with 'Pressed Rat and Warthog' on it? This was a thinly disguised version of 'The Cutty Wren'

Oh where are you going said Milder to Moulder etc.

Giok

Pressed Rat and Warthog


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: GUEST
Date: 23 Dec 06 - 05:23 AM

4/18/03

I got your email and revisited the Zoe site. I posted a bio for you....hope it was not too long but it was hard to stop writing once I started. I used to be a counselor at "Group" for the younger campers. One song we sang was "Alice".

Alice where are you going?
Upstairs to take a bath.
Alice with legs like toothpicks and neck like a Giraffe.
Alice stepped in the bathtub,
Alice pulled out the plug.
Oh my goodness, Oh my sole,
there goes Alice down the hole.
Alice Alice Glub Glub Glub


From the www


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Peace
Date: 23 Dec 06 - 05:29 AM

With chords.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Azizi
Date: 23 Dec 06 - 07:47 AM

Maybe off topic and maybe not:

I'm wondering if there is any connection between the children's [jumprope or handclap] rhyme "Miss Lucy Had A Baby" and the songs "My baby got washed down the plughole" and "Alice where are you going".

I'm assuming that most of you know "Miss Lucy [or some other name] Had A Baby", but for the record, I'll post an example from a Mudcat thread of what I believe is the standard version, and another example from a Mudcat thread of what I believe is a contemporary version of this rhyme.

"Standard version":

Subject: RE: Naughty kids' greatest hits II
From: GUEST,Mrrzy-at-work - PM
Date: 07 Apr 00 - 12:20 PM

I saw on the older thread something about the alligator purse. We used to sing that one:
Miss Lucy had a baby, she named him Tiny Tim, she put him in the bathtub to see if he could swim

He ate up all the water, he drank up all the soap, he tried to eat the bathtub but it wouldn't go down his throat

Miss Lucy called the doctor, miss Lucy called the nurse, miss Lucy called the lady with the alligator purse

(now start singing faster and faster) In walked the doctor, in walked the nurse, in walked the lady with the alligator purse

Measles said the doctor, mumps said the nurse, chickenpox said the lady with the alligator purse

Out walked the doctor, out walked the nurse, out walked the lady with the alligator purse!

This was done by 2 people who did a fancy hand-clapping thing along with it.

**

"Contemporary version":

Subject: RE: Heigh Ho, Heigh Ho, I Bit the Teacher's Toe!
From: GUEST
Date: 13 Apr 05 - 11:53 PM

O_O This is sung to the tune of 'Miss Susie had a Steamboat' (and when I learned it, Miss Susie was Miss Mary)
Miss Molly had a baby,
The baby's name was Tim,
She put him in a bathtub,
To see if he could swim.
He ate up all the water,
He drank up all the soap,
He woulda ate the bathtub but it wouldn't fit his throat!
Miss Molly called the doctor,
Miss Molly called the nurse,
Miss Molly called the lady with the alligator purse!
Measles said the doctor,
Measles said the nurse,
Pizza said the lady with the alligator purse!
Miss Molly shot the doctor,
Miss Molly stabbed the nurse,
Miss Molly paid the lady with the alligator purse!
...
Early '90's, Calgary, Canada

**

So what do you think? Was "My baby got washed down the plughole" and "Alice where are you going" the source of Miss Lucy {Molly, Susie" etc} Had A Baby?"

Which songs/rhymes came first?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 23 Dec 06 - 08:22 AM

I'd guess Azizis rhyme has a separate origin - it fits in with the tradition of songs in which childcarers sing about the terrible things that might happen to a baby.
(eg Way down yonder, down in the meadow,
There's a poor little lamby,
The bees and the butterflies peckin' out its eyes,
The poor little thing cried mammy.
)

I remember somewhere that gorn dahn the plug'ole is supposed to be based on a true incident of something that happened in a communal washing facility where they had extra big plugholes. Which is a rather disturbing thought.   But perhaps it was just something that nearly happened, or that the audience would recognise as something that might almost happen:

Here is a slightly extended version, as recorded by Ginger Baker (of Cream):

A mother was bathin' her baby one night
The youngest of ten, a poor little mite
The mother was fat and the baby was fin
T'was nowt but a skellington wrapped up in skin

The mother turned round for the soap from the rack
She weren't gone a minute, but when she got back
Her baby had gone, and in anguish she cried
"Oh, where is my baby?", and the angels replied

Your baby has gorn dahn the plug'ole
Your baby has gorn dahn the plug
The poor little thing was so skinny and thin
He shoulda been bathed in a jug

Your baby is perfik'ly happy
He won't need no bathin' no more
He's workin' his way through the sewers
Not lost, just gone on before

Your baby has gorn dahn the drainpipe
And the chlorine is bad for his eyes
He's havin' a swim, and it's healthy for him
He needed the exercise

Don't worry 'baht 'im, just be 'appy
For I know he is suff'rin' no pain
Your baby has gorn dahn the plug'ole
Let's hope he don't stop up the drain

ALTERNATE VERSE:

Your baby is perfik'ly 'appy
He won't need a bath any more
He's muckin' abaht with the angels above
Not lost but gone before


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: GUEST,Ben Daglish
Date: 05 Feb 07 - 11:44 AM

Hi,

I've always known different lyrics to this. The Cream version seems to be the most often quoted, but this is the version I got from my mum, who got it from John Foreman (the Broadsheet King) when he used to play in their folk club, early 1960's. She's pretty sure it's word-for-word as John did it, including the pronounciation (which I've rendered as well as I can), some of which ("h-angel", "wanished" etc.) suggests someone like Gus Elen, maybe.

A mother was bafing 'er baby one night,
poor little fing was a terrible sight,
the mother was poor, and the baby was fin,
only a skelington wrapped up in skin

she only turned round for a minute,
to get the soap off the rack,
she only turned round for a minute,
but, when she, turned back,

'er baby 'ad wanished completely,
wanished completely away,
'er baby 'ad wanished completely,
but she 'eard, a h'angel, say....

Your baby has gone darn the plug'ole
Your baby has gone darn the plug
'E was much too small, to be bathed at all,
'e should 'ave been washed in a jug (or a mug)

Your baby is perfectly 'appy,
'E won't need no barfin no more,
Your baby is perfectly 'appy, my dear
Not dead, just gorn, before.

------------

The tune is different as well, but rather than attempt an ABC version, I'll post it on the net somewhere soon.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Murray MacLeod
Date: 05 Feb 07 - 03:37 PM

it has to be said that the Cream version carries more of a punch, with that final line, "Let's hope he don't stop up the drain"


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: GUEST,JTT
Date: 06 Feb 07 - 03:33 AM

Ah yes, heard Eric Clapton doing this in the Roundhouse around 1969 or 1971. He accompanied himself on a ukelele, which he then destroyed, Who-style.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 06 Feb 07 - 03:38 PM

I remember John Foreman singing that in Unity Theatre Folk Club. If there's a definitive version of anything (and I incline to think there isn't), that's the definitive version of this. Except I've a feeling that third verse isn't quite what John sang. But it's been a long time.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: SINSULL
Date: 28 Feb 08 - 03:41 PM

According to a web news site, some poor lady went into labor prematurely in India on a train. The baby went down the toilet (read hole) and fell on the tracks where he was recovered hours later unharmed.
So many things wrong with this story. Let's start with toilets that empty onto tracks year after year after year...


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 28 Feb 08 - 10:47 PM

Not a problem. That's how the original Australiamn railway carriages worked too.

There used to be signs - even a song "Passengers will please refrain"...

As to the dispopsal of the 'material' itself - well that's what the little furry critters that live in the Aussie bush are for.. :-)

I'm not making this up, you know...


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Ross Campbell
Date: 29 Feb 08 - 12:58 AM

Passengers will please refrain is on mudcat. (UK trains too, up to a few years ago).

More seriously, there have been a series of accidents involving children being badly injured or drowned when caught by the suction from bathing-pool drainage ducts. This link describes one such case.

In the days of communal wash-houses, sinks and drains were built on a much larger scale than you would find in a modern house. Somebody in the case linked above suggests that these accidents are so bizarre-sounding as to be thought "urban legends" - sadly they are all too real, and similarly there may indeed be some incident that preceded the "gorn dahn the plughole" song.

Ross


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: iancarterb
Date: 29 Feb 08 - 01:18 AM

The one I learned VERY young via my mother and father from the long line of Aussie, Kiwi and Brit Royal Navy that streamed through our house on Long Island during WWII is most nearly like that posted by cranky yankee:

A mother was bathin' her bye-bee one night
Youngest of ten and a poor little mite.
The mother was poor and the bye-bee was thin
Just like a skeleton wrapped up in skin.

The mother turned round for the soap on the shelf
And when she turned back she was all by herself.
"Oh, where is my bye-bee in anguish she cried?"
And as she was sobbin', the angels replied:

"Your bye-bee is gone down the plug 'ole,
"Your bye-bee is gone down the plug.
"Poor little devil was awfully thin,
" 'T ought to 've been bathed in a jug.
"Your bye-bee is perfectly 'appy
"'Twon't need a bath any more.
"Your bye-bee is gone up to 'evvin
"Not lost, but just gone before.

Carter Bannerman


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: pavane
Date: 29 Feb 08 - 02:28 AM

According to one web site, this was the FIRST solo song recorded by Martin Carthy (I haven't checked the link above).
I still have a recording of John Foreman singing it in a club around 1972, so I could probably decipher his words.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: pavane
Date: 29 Feb 08 - 04:11 AM

I have now uploaded John Foreman's performance to a private area of my web site.

To listen or download, go to

http://www.chappuzeau.net

click the link for Private area
enter the password pontardawe (How original!)
(I have also uploaded Treble Tail Gypsies - see other thread)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: GUEST,The Mole Catcher's unplugged Apprentice
Date: 29 Feb 08 - 04:09 PM

YOUR BABY HAS GONE DOWN THE PLUGHOLE (A MOTHER'S LAMENT)
(Writer Unknown - London Music Hall Song))

Martin Carthy - 1964
Cream (vocal: Ginger Baker)- 1967 (as A Mother's Lament)



A mother was bathin' her baby one night
The youngest of ten, a poor little mite
The mother was fat and the baby was fin
T'was nawt but a skellington wrapped up in skin

The mother turned round for the soap from the rack
She weren't gone a minute, but when she got back
Her baby had gone, and in anguish she cried
"Oh, where is my baby?", and the angels replied

Your baby has gorn dahn the plug'ole
Your baby has gorn dahn the plug
The poor little thing was so skinny and thin
He shoulda been bathed in a jug

Your baby is perfik'ly happy
He won't need no bathin' no more
He's workin' his way through the sewers
Not lost, just gone on before

Your baby has gorn dahn the drainpipe
And the chlorine is bad for his eyes
He's havin' a swim, and it's healthy for him
He needed the exercise

Don't worry 'baht 'im, just be 'appy
For I know he is suff'rin' no pain
Your baby has gorn dahn the plug'ole
Let's hope he don't stop up the drain

ALTERNATE VERSE:

Your baby is perfik'ly 'appy
He won't need a bath any more
He's muckin' abaht with the angels above
Not lost but gone before


Charlotte (it would have to be a VERY large plug'ole to lose my children)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 29 Aug 08 - 07:31 PM

Saw a 'Poirot' (A. Christie) shoe last night - one of the characters keeps singing this - it refers (in the show) to a lady having an abortion. I assume this is just the fiction of the story, but...

I have never come across this concept for this song before - any comments?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 29 Aug 08 - 08:08 PM

What Kilgarriff says:

"Your Baby 'as Gown Dahn the Plug-'Ole." (Spade) DAS/CCC. 1944.
Elsa Lanchester. From "Ditties from the Ditty Box." Jack Spade, a composite pseudonym of Elton Box, Desmond Cox and Lewis Ilda, the last-named being the publisher Irwin Dash. "It seems likely that this song is a burlesque with no authenic traditional origin. It was recorded by Elsa Lanchester in 1951. The U. S. version, "Your Baby Has Gone Down the Drainpipe," is by Morey Amsterdam: Kay Patrick (FEL/DFH, 1946).

Michael Kilgarriff, 1998, "Sing Us One of the Old Songs," A Guide to Popular Song 1860-1920. Oxford Univ. Press


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Gurney
Date: 30 Aug 08 - 12:29 AM

I've sung that as 'should have been bathed in a jug or a tin... which rhymes.

A tin being English English for a can.

Also, Bath...d not Bathe..d


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE DRAINPIPE SONG (Amsterdam, Patrick)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 01 Sep 08 - 12:39 PM

Here's an interesting adaptation of this traditional(?) cockney song for an American audience. Shay seems to be making some effort to produce a cockney accent, but she does it so badly I have not bothered to represent her pronunciation with my spelling.

THE DRAINPIPE SONG (YOUR BABY HAD GONE DOWN THE DRAINPIPE)
(Morey Amsterdam, Katherine "Kay" Patrick)
As recorded by Dorothy Shay, Columbia 37893, 1947.

A mother was washing her baby one night,
Poor little infant so slim and so slight!
The mother turned round for the soap on the rack.
'Twas only a moment but when she turned back—

"Oh, where, oh, where is my baby?" she cried.
"Oh, where is my baby?" and the angels replied:

"Your baby has gone down the drainpipe.
Your baby has gone down the plug.
Poor little mite, so slim and so slight,
He should have been washed in a jug.
Your baby is perfectly happy,
'Cause he won’t have to bathe any more.
Your baby has gone down the plughole,
Not lost but gone ever more.

"Your baby has gone down the drainpipe,
And the chlorine is bad for his eyes.
He’s having a swim, and it’s healthy for him.
He needed the exercise.
Don’t worry your head; just be happy,
And remember he suffered no pain.
Your baby has gone down the plughole.
Let’s hope he don’t stop up the drain."


[As recorded by Dorothy Shay in 1947 on Columbia 37893; also on "The Park Avenue Hillbillie Sings Feudin' & Fightin'," Vintage Jazz Band CD #1954, 2001.]


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: GUEST,My name isn't Anna May, but who is checking
Date: 27 Feb 10 - 11:47 PM

Nah... nothing to do with babies.. at least not the one my classmates yelled at me when I was in 12th grade, 5'9" tall, 102 lbs (American that is)... and this version is short:

"Anna May, where are you going"
"Upstairs to take a bath."
Anna May with legs like toothpicks,
A neck like a giraffe.
Anna May gets in the bathtub,
Anna May pulls out the plug,
"O my goodness, o my soul!
There goes Anna May, down the hole!
Anna May! Anna May!"
"Glug"

The happy ending is that when I was 17 a photographer saw me, took some pictures, and lo and behold! whew.. became a New York photographer's fashon model for a few years!
(No, don't ask my age now. I like and lie and lie.. lolol)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: GUEST,basenjimum
Date: 06 Mar 10 - 01:37 PM

I don't know why I haven't a phobia about bathrooms as my eldest sister told me Daleks lived behind the door.( we're talking old house- big really long and narrow bathroom-no place to hide)
Then at bathtime (once a week whether you needed it nor not) my Dad would sing this to me-
" My baby went down the plughole
My baby went down the plug
The poor little thing
was so skinny & thin
it should have been washed in a jug.
I turned my back
to get soap from the rack
but by then my baby was gone"

Different words - chlorine would only have been used in swimming
baths then & certainly no happy angels telling us baby was O.K!
Sung to "My bonnie lies over the ocean" though.
Even darker is the theory that this mother's lament is about
miscarriage, or worse, illegal abortion.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: GUEST,bernadette
Date: 02 Dec 16 - 04:29 PM

This is the lyrics my father sang me to sleep with. One of many British pug songs, we learned. he was a Brit,in the WW2.
A mother was bathing her baby one night,
the poor little thing was a horrible sight.
The mother was poor, the baby was thin.
It was only a skeleton covered in skin.
The mother turned round for the soap on the rack.
She was only a moment,
but when she turn back.
The baby was gone!
In anguish she cried.....; Oh were is my baby!!!
The angels replied...
Your baby has gone down the plug hole, your baby has gone down the plug.
The poor little thing was so horribly thin it should have been washed in a jug.
Your baby is perfectly happy . It won't a bath any more more.
Your baby has gone down the plug hole, not lost but gone before.
Gone before.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Mrrzy
Date: 02 Dec 16 - 10:00 PM

Our version went

Alice, with legs like toothpicks, a neck like a giraffe
Alice went to the bathtub, upstairs, to take a bath,
Alice got in the bathtub, Alice pulled out the plug
O my goodness, O my soul, there goes Alice down the hole!
Alice? Alice! (glug, glug, glug)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Ross Campbell
Date: 03 Dec 16 - 12:46 AM

Cream - Mother's Lament

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mDE1ZvvHVVg

Ross


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My baby got washed down the plughole
From: Joe Offer
Date: 03 Dec 16 - 02:38 AM

I forgot all about that one, Ross. Thanks for the memories....


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