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Lyr Req: McArthur's Fart: 'The day McArthur farted

GUEST,jobrien@fec.gov 01 Mar 01 - 03:22 PM
Sorcha 01 Mar 01 - 05:29 PM
Joe Offer 01 Mar 01 - 05:36 PM
Sorcha 01 Mar 01 - 05:54 PM
GUEST,James Bleby 19 Sep 06 - 04:12 AM
Bill D 19 Sep 06 - 11:44 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 20 Sep 06 - 12:11 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 20 Sep 06 - 12:41 PM
GUEST,Rowan 21 Sep 06 - 01:23 AM
The Fooles Troupe 16 Jul 07 - 03:43 AM
Bugsy 16 Jul 07 - 06:46 PM
JennyO 16 Jul 07 - 10:45 PM
Sandra in Sydney 17 Jul 07 - 03:40 AM
GUEST,Redgum performed this 21 Sep 07 - 12:56 AM
Celtaddict 21 Sep 07 - 01:23 AM
Celtaddict 21 Sep 07 - 01:26 AM
LesB 21 Sep 07 - 07:14 AM
sapper82 21 Sep 07 - 03:49 PM
LesB 21 Sep 07 - 07:31 PM
GUEST,Lost cookie 22 Sep 07 - 12:34 PM
GUEST,Gerry McArdle 17 Dec 07 - 11:09 AM
GUEST,Carol Vincent 20 Dec 07 - 01:39 AM
GUEST 26 Feb 08 - 09:50 PM
Rowan 26 Feb 08 - 11:18 PM
GUEST,Andrew Secker 29 Apr 08 - 11:23 PM
Rowan 30 Apr 08 - 01:24 AM
GUEST,Allen Lyne 22 Mar 09 - 09:02 PM
GUEST,Kel 02 Apr 09 - 03:03 AM
GUEST,Gerry 11 Apr 10 - 07:02 AM
Rowan 12 Apr 10 - 02:05 AM
GUEST,Gerry 12 Apr 10 - 08:20 PM
Rowan 12 Apr 10 - 08:40 PM
GUEST,Greg Gilmour 17 Jun 18 - 05:51 PM
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Subject: McArthur/Bryan Bowers folk songs
From: GUEST,jobrien@fec.gov
Date: 01 Mar 01 - 03:22 PM

My brother is looking for a folk song, possibly Australian, he doesn't know the title, about "The Day McArthur Farted"; he does not know the author and I assume it is a topical folksong/parody presumably humorous.

I am also looking for a folk song by Bryan Bowers (the Seattle auto harpist) would like lyrics and possible recordings it might be on--it was about Adam and Eve and the sixties and I think it starts: "Oh Adam get away from that tree, you'll pick the apple and they'll blame it on me!"

Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.


I started a thread for the Bryan Bowers song here (click)

-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: McArthur Folk song
From: Sorcha
Date: 01 Mar 01 - 05:29 PM

First title is "The Day McArthur Farted". Paul Taylor, Australian folklorist and storyteller does it as a recitation. I can't find words on the net, but maybe one of or Ozzie people knows them. Over to Oz.......haven't looked for the second one yet.


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Subject: ADD: McArthur's Fart
From: Joe Offer
Date: 01 Mar 01 - 05:36 PM

MCARTHUR'S FART

Back in Donga country there's a tale the old folks tell
Of a man whose name is famous in the town of Bungadell.
And if ya like, I'll tell you all about this little town.
It's a dry and dusty place, until the rain comes down.

Back in 1927, it hadn't rained for weeks.
There was bull-dust in the billabongs and dead sheep in the creeks.
But the hero of our story was soon to help them out
On the day McArthur farted, and saved the town from drought.

Now, no one knew too much about this joker from the scrub
We'd heard some yarns about him from the Drovers in the pub
Some said he came from Bunker's Run and some from Beula's Park
But the one thing that they all agreed - he sure knew how to fart.

Now Bungadell was dry and hard like a three week stale old crust
The sheep were drinking whisky but were only pissing dust
We had a dam upside the hill, a mile out of town
That should have filled the water tanks, but not a drop come down.

So we sent a deputation there to see what could be wrong
And found we had a problem that we hadn't counted on
Old Bert's dead horse was blocking off the exit to the dam
You think that we could shift it? Na, the bloody thing was jammed.

Fifty blokes with crowbars struggled fifty days and nights
But couldn't shift the bastard, it was stuck there good and tight
The dam was full of water but we couldn't get it out
'Til the day McArthur farted and saved the town from drought.

We blasted it with dynamite and couldn't get it loose
And even Murphy's bullock team wasn't any use.
"There's only one last chance!" said Clancy's brother Blue
"We'll have to get McArthur -- see what he can do!"

Well, the cry went up "McArthur!! He's the one who knows the art
He'll send that dead horse flying with a well-constructed fart!"
The people waited eagerly for the day to come about
The day McArthur farted and saved the town from drought.

Well, at last McArthur came and the people gathered 'round
To see the man whose fart was gonna send the waters down
He came on two big horses, with half his bum on each
A bum so wide a man could drive a tram between his cheeks.

Now, McArthur was a quiet man, but thorough, through and through
He said "I'll need some food and drinks, so see what you can do"
So we made the preparations, we made a mighty spread
Fifty tons of onions, and piles of prunes and bread.

Fifty tons of blue veined cheese and fifty kegs of stout
The day McArthur farted and saved the town from drought
He sat back with a knife and fork and really knocked it back
He polished off those kegs of stout in twenty seconds flat.

McArthur got up slowly, then he turned his bum around
And the people drove for shelter as they heard a dreadful sound
A roaring like a lion, and a chill ran through their hearts
As McArthur's body trembled and let off some mighty farts!

He farted and he farted till the earth began to shake
The ills began to tremble and the dams began to break
And still McArthur farted till he made the thunder crack
The winds, they howled, the lightning flared, the skies were turning black

They heard it up in China, where the up-side-downers dwell
They heard it up in Heaven and they heard it down in hell
I hardly need to tell ya, it was really on the snout
On the day McArthur farted and saved the town from drought.

Well that's how McArthur saved the day back there in Bungadell
And still his memory lingers on (and so too does the smell)
Even across in Adelaide, they've heard about his art
And every other year they hold a Festival of Farts!!



I found it at a place called the Lost Verse Archives
-Joe Offer (e-mail sent)-


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Subject: RE: McArthur Folk song
From: Sorcha
Date: 01 Mar 01 - 05:54 PM

Good O, Joe O!


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Subject: RE: McArthur Folk song
From: GUEST,James Bleby
Date: 19 Sep 06 - 04:12 AM

Hi Guys

Just so you know, my dad andrew bleby and his friend rob bath wrote this poem when they were in university in 1974.

Unfortunately, being in university and being young, my dad did not get a copyright for his work. Perhaps you could acknowledge his name on this site as it is his work.

Yours sincerily,

James Bleby


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Subject: RE: McArthur Folk song
From: Bill D
Date: 19 Sep 06 - 11:44 AM

James...you just did make sure that the information is available. Google indexes Mudcat now, and no doubt anyone looking for the song will find your post. Thanks.


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Subject: RE: McArthur Folk song
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 20 Sep 06 - 12:11 PM

"Lost Verse Archives" has been taken up by the Australian Bush Poetry site: www.bushpoetry.com.au/
Bush Poetry

Bleby and Bath are acknowledged at the site as authors of "McArthur's Fart."

Good to have this poem at Mudcat, Joe. Often these sites disappear.


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Subject: RE: McArthur Folk song
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 20 Sep 06 - 12:41 PM

One must register at the Bush Poetry site.

I click on the link to McA...F in the most requested list, but it doesn't come up, although other links work.
Would someone please try- I am probably missng the link.


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Subject: RE: McArthur Folk song
From: GUEST,Rowan
Date: 21 Sep 06 - 01:23 AM

Like many similar items in Australian repertoire it started as a recitation and many people are intent on it staying that way. Some gifted people write wonderful tunes to various Australian poems but there are many for whom the 'poem as song' grates when they hear their much loved poems sung.

Have fun!


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Subject: RE: McArthur Folk song
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 16 Jul 07 - 03:43 AM

http://www.bushpoetry.com.au/

shows as now not available...


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Subject: RE: McArthur Folk song
From: Bugsy
Date: 16 Jul 07 - 06:46 PM

I had a version of the bush yarn done as a song by "Stinger & the Sandblasters". I don't know if it's still available though.

Cheers

Bugsy


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Subject: RE: McArthur Folk song
From: JennyO
Date: 16 Jul 07 - 10:45 PM

I've never heard it as a song. I've only heard it done as a recitation by Yuri the Storyteller. Heard him do it quite recently as a matter of fact.


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Subject: RE: McArthur Folk song/McArthur's Fart
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 17 Jul 07 - 03:40 AM

Macarthur's Fart (or part thereof) is confined in a very well sealed Vegemite jar & is the annual prize for a competition.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: McArthur's Fart: 'The day McArthur fa
From: GUEST,Redgum performed this
Date: 21 Sep 07 - 12:56 AM

At various concerts and at a special Boardroom Presentation at 2 TRiple M in Sydney. many were unimpresed


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: McArthur's Fart: 'The day McArthur fa
From: Celtaddict
Date: 21 Sep 07 - 01:23 AM

There do seem to be some other bush poetry sites currently.
Bush Verse


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: McArthur's Fart: 'The day McArthur fa
From: Celtaddict
Date: 21 Sep 07 - 01:26 AM

If you Google 'Australian Bush Poetry' there are a number of likely looking sites.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: McArthur's Fart: 'The day McArthur farted
From: LesB
Date: 21 Sep 07 - 07:14 AM

When I saw the thread title I thought it was going to be a parody of 'McArthurs Park'. Now there's a thought....
Cheers


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: McArthur's Fart: 'The day McArthur farted
From: sapper82
Date: 21 Sep 07 - 03:49 PM

you're not the only one Les!!
Here's a starter:-
Someone had a fart out in the rain,


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: McArthur's Fart: 'The day McArthur farted
From: LesB
Date: 21 Sep 07 - 07:31 PM

And I think i'm going to take one
Cos it took so long to make one
& i'll never have the receipe again..............


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: McArthur's Fart: 'The day McArthur fa
From: GUEST,Lost cookie
Date: 22 Sep 07 - 12:34 PM

Hey,
Who else can I tell this to who will appreciate it? The other day I about died laughing because I farted (not unusual) but I farted again and it was EXACTLY an octave lower! I'm so musical..... :0)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: McArthur's Fart: 'The day McArthur farted
From: GUEST,Gerry McArdle
Date: 17 Dec 07 - 11:09 AM

I spent a delightful day last month with my old friend Rob Bath, the co-author of MacArthur's Fart. I was visiting from Ireland, and we hadn't seen each other in 30 years, so had a wonderful time reliving old adventures. He's a great guy, and has a lovely wife, Carol.
Gerry
gerry.mcardle@rte.ie


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: McArthur's Fart: 'The day McArthur farted
From: GUEST,Carol Vincent
Date: 20 Dec 07 - 01:39 AM

yes it's true my husband Rob Bath and Andrew bleby did write McArthur's Fart.I dont think Rob and Andy have any idea just how famous that old ballad has become or how many countries in the world it's performed.Rob's email address is harrogate@senet.com.au drop him a line or invite him to come and recite it for you1
Carol


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: McArthur's Fart: 'The day McArthur farted
From: GUEST
Date: 26 Feb 08 - 09:50 PM

Saw this performed live at Bendigo CAE in 1980 by Redgum. Laughed my butt off. 28 years later, I still remember the words and my kids now laugh their butts off.


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Subject: Lyr Add: MCARTHUR'S FART
From: Rowan
Date: 26 Feb 08 - 11:18 PM

From Jim Smith, I have received the following.
Rob Bath and Andrew Bleby are joint authors of "McArthur's Fart". Rob, from Adelaide, is a freelance screenwriter, occasional playwright and arts administrator. Andy is now in Melbourne where he is director of Victoria's first major youth arts festival.
Their poem has never previously been published although it has been, and is, recited throughout Australia and overseas. Keith McKenry, in a paper presented to the Inaugural National Folklore Conference in 1984, traced its progress through reciters both here and abroad.
The circumstances under which it was written take us back to 1974 in the clubroom of Adelaide University Dramatic Society. Rob and Andrew were musing over needed script for a coming revue. They had decided on a narrative poem about some wildly exaggerated superhuman effort that built to a climax. As they discussed this someone bent over their battered radiator; Rob urged them not to fart because the convection would send it all over the small room. Then one of those little light bulbs appeared in mid-air as they looked at each other and realised they had stumbled on the superhuman feat they were looking for.
And so McArthur's Fart was born.
It was first performed by Andrew Secker, then a law student, in the first night of Jumbo, June 5, 1974. Jumbo played ten performances with full houses each night. A short time later 5UV broadcast a performance recording. In July 1974 a 5UV broadcast was apparently jammed (presumably by the Postmaster General's Dept) soon after the first "fart" was mentioned. Another attempt soon afterwards made it all the way. It was performed by Andrew Secker again a few years later, and was included in a show called The Bionic Cookbook, a cabaret revue written, performed and produced by Rob, Andrew, Rob Brookman, Steve Brown and a couple of others. This semi-professional show played in the Festival Theatre bar, the Amphitheatre, the Flinders University, Adleaide University and Adelaide CAE refectories, for a season at the Box Factory in Adelaide and on a double bill program with Redgum. Its popularity is demonstrated by participation of audiences in the recurring line "On the day McArthur farted and saved the town from drought."
Rob and Andrew have given us a character in McArthur and a town (Bungadell) that have become part of our folklore, household names throughout Australia. They have inspired other writers to draw on them, in the true folk tradition
.

There are some differences between the version here and the one already posted.

McArthur's Fart

Back in Donga country
there's a tale the old folks tell
'Bout a bloke whose name is famous
in the town of Bungadell

An' if youse like I'll tell ya
bit about this little town
It's a dry and dusty place to be
until the rains come down

In nineteen twenty seven
when it hadn't rained for weeks
There was bulldust in the billabongs
and dead sheep in the creeks

But the hero of our story
was soon to help them out
On the day McArthur farted
and saved the town from drought

Now no one knew too much
about this joker from the scrub
but they'd heard some yarns about him
from some drovers in the pub

Some said he came from Bunker's Run
and some from Beulah Park
But one thing that they agreed on—
he sure knew how to fart

And this was proved one day
beyond a shadder of a doubt
the day McArthur farted
and saved the town from drought

Well Bungadell was hard and dry
as a three-week stale old crust
The sheep was drinking whisky
and their piss was turned to dust

They had a dam up in the hills
a mile outside of town
which shoulda filled the water tanks
but not a drop come down

They sent a deputation up
to see what could be wrong
And found they had a problem
they hadn't counted on

Old Bert's dead horse was blocking up
the channel from the dam
You'd reckon they could shift it
but the bloody thing was jammed

Fifty blokes with crowbars
bashed it fifty days and nights
But they couldn't shift the bastard
it was stuck there good and tight

They had a stack of water
but they couldn't get it out
till the day McArthur farted
and saved the town from drought

They blasted it with dynamite
but couldn't get it loose
And even Murphy's bullock team
just wasn't any use

"There's only one hope left for us"
said Clancy's brother, Blue
"We'll have to get McArthur
and see what he can do"

The cry went up "McArthur!!
He's the bloke who knows the art
He could send that horse there flyin'
with a well-constructed fart!"

And so the townsfolk waited
for the day to come about—
for the day McArthur farted
and saved the town from drought

At last McArthur came
and all the people gathered 'round
To see the man whose fart
was gonna send the waters down

He came on two big horses
with half his bum on each
A bum so big a man could drive
a tram between the cheeks

McArthur was a quiet bloke
but thorough, through and through
He said "I'll need some food and drink
so see what youse can do."

They started preparations
and laid out a mighty spread
with forty tons of onions
and a pile of prunes and bread

They had fifty tons of blue vein cheese
and fifty kegs of stout
On the day McArthur farted
and saved the town from drought

He sat down with a knife and fork
and really knocked it back
Then finished off the kegs of stout
in thirty seconds flat

McArthur got up slowly
and he turned his bum around
The people all took cover
as they heard a dreadful sound

Like the roaring of a lion
and a chill ran through their hearts
McArthur's body trembled
and let go a mighty fart!

He farted and he farted
till the earth began to shake
The hills they started shaking
and the dam began to break

But still McArthur farted
till it made the thunder crack!
The winds they howled, the lightning flared
the sky was turning black!

They heard it up in China
where the upside-downers dwell
They heard it up in Heaven
and they heard it down in hell!

I hardly need to tell ya
it was really on the snout
On the day McArthur farted
and saved the town from drought

That was how McArthur
saved the town of Bungadell
His memory there still lingers on
and so too does the smell

And even down in Adelaide
they've heard about his Art
And every other year
they hold a Festival of Farts!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: McArthur's Fart: 'The day McArthur farted
From: GUEST,Andrew Secker
Date: 29 Apr 08 - 11:23 PM

As the person who first recited this poem on stage as part of the "Jumbo" cast in June 1974, I can say that Jim Smith got the story about its creation and first performances pretty right. He also got the words pretty close to true. I still have the original manuscript and the main difference is in the opening stanza, which reads:

In the back of donga country
There's a tale the old folks tell
'Bout a man who's [sic] name is famous
In the town of Bungadell

I'm glad the piece still gives pleasure. Rob Bath and Andrew Bleby deserve full credit for it.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: McArthur's Fart: 'The day McArthur fa
From: Rowan
Date: 30 Apr 08 - 01:24 AM

Good to hear from you, Andrew.

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: McArthur's Fart: 'The day McArthur farted
From: GUEST,Allen Lyne
Date: 22 Mar 09 - 09:02 PM

The last entry here goes back almost a year, so I hope someone sees this.
In 1976 Rob Bath and I put together a fundraiser for La Mama Theatre, which had burned down. Red Gum was one of the acts that donated their services on the night. It was at The Balcony Theatre and raised more than 6 grand for the rebuilding fund.
Rob recited The Fart at that show. It was the first time I'd heard it and it had people falling off their seats laughing.
It is a great Australian piece and kudos to Rob and Andrew for the creation.
I've been looking for the words for years and so glad I found them.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: McArthur's Fart: 'The day McArthur farted
From: GUEST,Kel
Date: 02 Apr 09 - 03:03 AM

Just downloaded Redgum reciting this and had to look for the lyrics. The kids and I absolutely love it, have to print it off for school. Well their teacher loves Australiana, don't know if he'll recite it in the classroom though. ;o)

cheers all
Kel


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: McArthur's Fart: 'The day McArthur fa
From: GUEST,Gerry
Date: 11 Apr 10 - 07:02 AM

A recitation by Barney Foran from the 1980 Australian National Folk Festival in Alice Springs appears on the compilation CD, The National - 35 years of the Australian National Folk Festival. The recording is indicative of a certain amount of folk-processing, compared to the poem as writ.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: McArthur's Fart: 'The day McArthur fa
From: Rowan
Date: 12 Apr 10 - 02:05 AM

Just wondering whether the last two posters were Kel Watkins and Gerry Hallom, respectively. As both were (are?) Guests they'll have to log in as members if they wish to respond via PM. Both remind me of good times.

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: McArthur's Fart: 'The day McArthur fa
From: GUEST,Gerry
Date: 12 Apr 10 - 08:20 PM

Myerson, not Hallom.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: McArthur's Fart: 'The day McArthur fa
From: Rowan
Date: 12 Apr 10 - 08:40 PM

Well, "Greetings to you" anyway. Gerry; thanks for the response.

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: McArthur's Fart: 'The day McArthur farted
From: GUEST,Greg Gilmour
Date: 17 Jun 18 - 05:51 PM

I came across this thread while searching, as I occasionally do, for a poem I heard performed in Wagga by The Bush Bandicoots. Must have been 1988 I think.
The poem was about the day McGwyder Pissed a Geyser and Saved the town from drought and I can't remember the details but it was funny as hell and obviously is a based on this one.


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