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Songs About Hell

Little Hawk 07 Jul 01 - 10:13 PM
Jon Freeman 07 Jul 01 - 10:16 PM
Matt_R 07 Jul 01 - 10:34 PM
Benjamin 07 Jul 01 - 10:34 PM
mousethief 07 Jul 01 - 10:52 PM
Rt Revd Sir jOhn from Hull 07 Jul 01 - 11:01 PM
Edmund 07 Jul 01 - 11:30 PM
Benjamin 08 Jul 01 - 12:19 AM
Folkdoctor 08 Jul 01 - 02:08 AM
Celtic Soul 08 Jul 01 - 10:44 AM
wildlone 08 Jul 01 - 12:49 PM
Nerd 08 Jul 01 - 01:40 PM
toadfrog 08 Jul 01 - 02:34 PM
AllisonA(Animaterra) 08 Jul 01 - 03:51 PM
Geoff the Duck 08 Jul 01 - 04:07 PM
GUEST,derrymacash on another computer 08 Jul 01 - 04:38 PM
Snuffy 08 Jul 01 - 07:41 PM
GUEST,Elise 08 Jul 01 - 10:12 PM
Tom D. 09 Jul 01 - 02:24 AM
CRANKY YANKEE 09 Jul 01 - 03:42 AM
CRANKY YANKEE 09 Jul 01 - 04:14 AM
CRANKY YANKEE 09 Jul 01 - 04:35 AM
Aidan Crossey 09 Jul 01 - 12:01 PM
Grab 09 Jul 01 - 05:42 PM
Little Hawk 09 Jul 01 - 06:25 PM
mousethief 09 Jul 01 - 06:32 PM
Gareth 09 Jul 01 - 06:45 PM
Charley Noble 09 Jul 01 - 08:32 PM
Susan of DT 09 Jul 01 - 09:55 PM
Little Hawk 09 Jul 01 - 10:16 PM
Aidan Crossey 10 Jul 01 - 04:12 AM
GUEST,Lisa 10 Jul 01 - 04:29 AM
Gareth 10 Jul 01 - 02:03 PM
Paddy Plastique 10 Jul 01 - 02:12 PM
John MacKenzie 10 Jul 01 - 02:43 PM
Gareth 10 Jul 01 - 03:31 PM
Hawker 10 Jul 01 - 08:34 PM
Finn McCool 10 Jul 01 - 09:54 PM
dick greenhaus 10 Jul 01 - 10:44 PM
GUEST,celticblues5 10 Jul 01 - 11:19 PM
Oversoul 10 Jul 01 - 11:41 PM
GUEST,Mikey Joe 11 Jul 01 - 04:33 AM
Susanne (skw) 11 Jul 01 - 05:12 PM
Gareth 11 Jul 01 - 05:28 PM
John MacKenzie 11 Jul 01 - 05:29 PM
Gareth 11 Jul 01 - 06:36 PM
LR Mole 12 Jul 01 - 10:15 AM
GUEST,Winick 12 Jul 01 - 02:57 PM
Finn McCool 12 Jul 01 - 03:24 PM
Mary in Kentucky 12 Jul 01 - 03:36 PM
Gareth 12 Jul 01 - 04:35 PM
Susanne (skw) 12 Jul 01 - 07:13 PM
Gareth 12 Jul 01 - 07:17 PM
Gareth 12 Jul 01 - 07:48 PM
Gareth 14 Jul 01 - 02:53 PM
Susan of DT 14 Jul 01 - 09:54 PM
John P 15 Jul 01 - 11:12 AM
Susanne (skw) 15 Jul 01 - 08:03 PM
Wolfgang 16 Jul 01 - 06:33 AM
Gareth 21 Jul 01 - 09:38 AM
Jock Morris 21 Jul 01 - 09:50 AM
Susanne (skw) 23 Jul 01 - 08:25 PM
Gareth 24 Jul 01 - 04:13 PM
Gareth 24 Jul 01 - 04:17 PM
GUEST,Songster Bob 24 Jul 01 - 04:38 PM
Dead Horse 25 Jul 01 - 05:30 PM
Brían 25 Jul 01 - 06:15 PM
bobbi 26 Jul 01 - 03:51 PM
Gareth 20 Oct 01 - 07:22 AM
GUEST,garret 25 Jul 03 - 07:20 PM
Joe_F 26 Jul 03 - 07:13 PM
GUEST 05 Dec 13 - 04:16 AM
Thompson 05 Dec 13 - 07:03 AM
Bobert 05 Dec 13 - 09:04 AM
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Subject: Songs About Hell
From: Little Hawk
Date: 07 Jul 01 - 10:13 PM

Who cares about Hull? How about Hell? There have got to be a ton of songs about the place. One that comes to mind is "The Farmer and the Devil". Burl Ives did a neat job on that one.

Got any other good ones, folks?

- LH


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 07 Jul 01 - 10:16 PM

I love the Dalesman's Littany - may have been brought up in Hull thread (I never opened it)...

From Hull and Halifax and Hell
Good Lord Deliver Me

reckon we need a Halifax thread too now.

Jon


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Subject: Lyr Add: HELL (from The Squirrel Nut Zippers)
From: Matt_R
Date: 07 Jul 01 - 10:34 PM

In the afterlife
You could be headed for some serious strife
Now you make the scene all day
But tomorrow there'll be Hell to pay
People listen attentively
I mean about future calamity
I used to think the idea was obsolete
Until I heard the old man stamping his feet

This is a place where eternally
Fire is applied to the body
Teeth are extruded and bones are ground
Then baked into cakes which are passed around

Beauty, talent, fame, money, refinement
Top skill and brain
But all the things you try to hide
Will be revealed on the other side

Now the D and the A and the M and the N and the A And the T and the I-O-N
Lose your face, lose your name
Then get fitted for a suit of flame

--Squirrel Nut Zippers


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Benjamin
Date: 07 Jul 01 - 10:34 PM

Larry Norman's Wish We'd All Been Ready is a haunting song. Okay, so it's about the end of the world. The topics are related.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: mousethief
Date: 07 Jul 01 - 10:52 PM

And Norman's "666" is the best song ever about the antichrist. But then again that's not about Hell either, is it?

Hell isn't exactly the sort of song that makes people write wistful, nostalgic pieces. Further, people who believe in it (and fear it) wouldn't think it funny, and people who don't believe in it wouldn't think it worth singing about, more or less.

Didn't AC/DC or one of those groups do a song about "We're on the highway to hell" or something of the sort?

Alex


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Rt Revd Sir jOhn from Hull
Date: 07 Jul 01 - 11:01 PM

Road to Hell-Chris Rea.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Edmund
Date: 07 Jul 01 - 11:30 PM

70 years ago we pre-teen age kids used to think the following ditty amusingly wicked

Johnny got into the bucket
The bucket went down in the well
His wife cut the rope to the bucket
And Johnny went down into .....

Ding ding ding ding ding ding ding tra la la la
The music my darling comes from afar
Ding ding ding ding ding ding ding tra la la la
He played on his Spanish guitar.

When Johnny got down into Hades
He was as meek as a lamb
He stepped om a red hot pitchfork
And said "Well I'll be ............
Ding ding ding ding ding ding ding tra la la la
The music my darling comes from afar
Ding dinh ding ding ding ding ding tra la la la
He played on his Spanish guitar.

Oh well ... remember .. I didn't start this thread
Edmund


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Benjamin
Date: 08 Jul 01 - 12:19 AM

I think Poison did a song called Valley of Lost Souls. Come to think of it, they also did one called Come Hell or High Water. I'm not sure either of these are really about hell though. I have to agree with Alex about this.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Folkdoctor
Date: 08 Jul 01 - 02:08 AM

If you go to Folk Legacy Records and find a man named Grant Rogers, he wrote a song about hell. He learns about it in Sunday School but he does not quite grasp the meaning, it sounds interesting, he thinks he would perhaps like to send his mother in law, then I remember the last verse says:

Now whenever them peddlers come to town With Something new to sell I walk right up to them and say Take your junk and go to Hell oh yeah Take your Junk and go to hell

This man was a tremedus talent, Songs Like Bessie The Heffer the Queen of all the cows In the morning She Gives Pasturized In the Evening it's Homogenized Oh Bessie The Heffer the Queen of all the Cows

I don't know if there is a CD? I have the old LP and could find out if anyone is really interested

Folkdoctor


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Celtic Soul
Date: 08 Jul 01 - 10:44 AM

"Captain Tractor" does one called "Go to hell" that is quite fun.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: wildlone
Date: 08 Jul 01 - 12:49 PM

Pete Coe does a Trevor Carter song called the "PR man from hell" on his album Long Company,BASH CD45 on the backshift label


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Nerd
Date: 08 Jul 01 - 01:40 PM

There's a great French song called "Quand Je Menai mes chevaux boire" in which a young man returns to his village to find out his lover has died. He rushes to the church where she tells him "they have saved the next seat in hell for you." Scary.

There's also the cajun song "Les Flammes D'enfer" that just about every major Cajun band has recorded.

There's "The Devil and Bailiff McGlynn" in which the devil catches the Bailiff and takes him to hell.

In "Boys of Bedlam" the narrator says "I went down to Pluto's (or sometimes Satan's) kitchen to beg some food one morning/and there i got souls piping hot, upon the spit a-turning."

In "The Maid and the Palmer," the Maid is condemned to "run as an ape through hell."

The Devil and the Feathery Wife is another with a similar theme to the Farmer's curst wife, but different!


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: toadfrog
Date: 08 Jul 01 - 02:34 PM

Let's see. There is of course SMOKED HIS CIGAR And there is one my mother used to sing. I can't recall most of the lyrics (and have to give the nonsense syllables phonetically, but in part like this:

He asked the devil-um for an ice-cream sodium
Hally,hally hoolium, old Ram Juram!
Oh, said the devil-um, this ain't no hotel-ium!
Hally,hally hoolium, old ram juram!

Any one know more about it?


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: AllisonA(Animaterra)
Date: 08 Jul 01 - 03:51 PM

Not to mention House Carpenter...


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Geoff the Duck
Date: 08 Jul 01 - 04:07 PM

Chris Rea's Road to Hell was actually about the M25, the motorway which encircles London - known variously as the Biggest Roundabout in England / Biggest Traffic Jam / Car Park..... etc.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: GUEST,derrymacash on another computer
Date: 08 Jul 01 - 04:38 PM

Killieburne Brae ... great

And check out Aidan Crossey's tune "Away to Hell" at Aidan Crossey's Original Tunes


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Snuffy
Date: 08 Jul 01 - 07:41 PM

'Tortoise From Hell' by Les Barker
Lyke Wake Dirge
Three Jolly Rogues


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: GUEST,Elise
Date: 08 Jul 01 - 10:12 PM

Dave Carter wrote a song called "Texas Underground" about hell in Texas. It is very funny; this is just one part:

Down came a shipment of used car salesmen smilin' like rattlesnakes Every politician in the whole damn country claimin' there was some mistake Lawyers and thieves and state police Gentlemen of the press Cons and flunkies, slackers, junkies Agents of the IRS

Welcome to Texas Underground We got a barbeque all year round...

This song is on his Snake Handlin' Man cd; don't know if it's available anymore. He still does the song in concert, though.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Tom D.
Date: 09 Jul 01 - 02:24 AM

Chuck Berry (!) did a great rendition of "That Down Bound Train" which I have also heard done as a recitation. Great guitar work on the Berry rendition.

Begins with "A Stranger lying on a bar room floor had drank so much, he couldn't drink no more...."

There is also a tune along similar lines from the 1960'S(?) with the refrain "Mr. Conductor, where are we going.." which laos pertains to the infernal regions.

Tom D.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: CRANKY YANKEE
Date: 09 Jul 01 - 03:42 AM


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Subject: Lyr Add: HARRY POLLITT
From: CRANKY YANKEE
Date: 09 Jul 01 - 04:14 AM

Harry Pollitt was a member of the British Communist Party, which oddly enough, supports the Monarchy. As I understand it, Harry did not approve of this support and raised quite a row. So, they kicked him out of the party and wrote a song about him, as if he were dead. Each verse of this has the same little tag on it, as I'll put in the first verse. The last bar of each verse repeated twice followed by the entire second line.

HARRY POLLITT (by ?)
I
Harry Pollitt was a worker. he was one of Lenin's Lads.
He was cruelly murdered by those counter-revolutionary cads.
Counter-revolutionary cads, counter-revolutionary cads,
He was cruelly murdered by those counter-revolutionary cads.

II
He ambled up to Heaven and got there with all ease,
Saying, "May I speak with Comrade God? I'm Harry Pollitt, please."

II
"Who are you?" said Saint Peter. "Are you humble and contrite?"
"I'm a friend of Lady Astor's." "Well, O.K., that's quite all right."

III
They put him in the choir, but the hymns he didn't like,
So he organized the angels and he led them out on strike.

IV
One day the Lord was strolling around Heaven to meditate,
When who did He see but Harry, chalking slogans on the gate?

V
Well, they hauled him up for trial before the Holy Ghost,
For spreading disaffection among the Heavenly Host.

VI
The verdict it was "Guilty" and Harry said, "Ah, well,"
Then he tucked his nightie around his legs and he ambled down to Hell.

VII
Now, seven long years have passed and old Harry's doin' swell.
He's just been made "first people's commissar of Soviet Hell."

VIII
There's a moral to this story. 'Tis easy for to tell:
If you want to be a Bolshevik, you'll have to go to Hell.
You'll have to go to Hell, you'll have to go to Hell,
If you want to be a Bolshevik, you'll have to go to Hell.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: CRANKY YANKEE
Date: 09 Jul 01 - 04:35 AM

By the Way, There are at least two Opera about people going to Hell. My Favorite Opera, (By my favorite Composer) is Mozart's "Don Giovanni". In the end, The Horrid Don Giovanni refuses to repent and is dragged straight down to Hell, kicking and screaming all the way (He deserved nothing better). Everyone else winds up in Purgatory, except Leporrello, Don G.'s servant and henchman who finally has enough of the Horrid Don and and tells him so. At least this is the way the only production that I've seen, ends. I saw the version that was produced by Peter Sellars (Not the funny actor, another one) and I was on the edge of my seat throughout the entire production. It was on Television here with English Subtitles. Get an English translation of the libretto and go see it. It's some piece of work.

I guess this qualifies as a song about Hell (a very long song indeed)


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Aidan Crossey
Date: 09 Jul 01 - 12:01 PM

And how could I have forgotten "Boys From The County Hell" and "Back In The County Hell" by Shane MacGowan from "Red Roses For Me" and "The Crock Of Gold" respectively.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Grab
Date: 09 Jul 01 - 05:42 PM

IIRC, Joan Baez did a trad song called "Mountains of Hell". "Devil went down/back to Georgia" kind of qualify.

Isn't there one ("The farmer's wife"?) where the devil takes this man's wife down to hell and then returns her bcos he can't take any more?

And of course there's more rock/metal songs than I can think of - I used to be a big Iron Maiden fan, and I can think of quite a few (particularly off the Seventh Son album).

Graham.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Little Hawk
Date: 09 Jul 01 - 06:25 PM

Marvellous! And we have hardly touched on the various hellfire type songs heard in some church circles...but they are on a sort of different wavelength, of course.

Spinal Tap did "Christmas With the Devil" and "Hellhole", let's not forget!

- LH


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: mousethief
Date: 09 Jul 01 - 06:32 PM

Didn't Pat Benetar do one called "Hell is for Children"? Although I think that song was about child abuse, and thus "hell" is being used figuratively.

Alex


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Gareth
Date: 09 Jul 01 - 06:45 PM

Grab

I think the song your after starts

There was on old farmer in Sussex did dwell
Rifle, rifle, fol y de dar,
And he'd a bad wife, as many do tell,
With a fol de rol diddle ay day.

The Devil came up to him at at his gate,
Rifle, rifle, fol y de dar,
I've not come for you, I've come for your mate
With a fol de rol diddle ay day.

I can't find it in the index, though that may be me rather than the index, and yes, basically she cayses so much hell in hell, the Devil sends here back !

Any catters recognize and identify ?

Gareth


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Subject: Lyr.Add: THE BUILDING SPECULATOR
From: Charley Noble
Date: 09 Jul 01 - 08:32 PM

As long as we are speculating on songs about Hell, why not one for the Building Speculator:

THE BUILDING SPECULATOR
(Words and music by Sam Richards © 1971)

I'll sing of a monster that's well known to fame;
A beast that would put the old devil to shame;
With houses and money he plays a fine game;
He's our local building speculator.

He's rich as a lord or an earl or viscount,
And he's sly as a fox and as mean as your aunt,
And he knows how to fiddle a government grant
From the nitwits that sit on the council.


He's put our old town in a helluva fix,
With his cunning and low-down and financial tricks;
For he's covered up every square acre with bricks,
And enhanced it with concrete and breezeblocks.

All his labourers sweat and they heave and they hump,
And they carry his bricks (but they're all on The Lump);
So I hope that the lot of them die of the mumps,
And I'll dance on their graves at their funerals.

May his builders all wither and crumble and fall,
Every brick, every floor, every ceiling and wall,
And as for his money, may he lose it all
And wait on the dole queue on Friday.

May the Almighty strike the old sod deaf and dumb;
May he suffer in pain from big sores round his bum;
May all of his teeth fall out, leaving but one
And the one that's remaining have toothache.

And when that he dies, up in heaven He'll dwell,
For it's never the rich that go down into hell;
And while he's there, I'm sure he will sell
Bits of Paradise to the old devil.

And (acting upon some sound business advice)
And (of course) at the cost of great self-sacrifice,
He'll get him a grant to improve Paradise
For I'm sure he could bribe the Almighty.

But the angels will all become wise to his tricks
When they see all the clouds that he plunders and nicks,
And they'll give the old sod a few well-chosen kicks,
And send him straight down to the devil.

May he then be put into an oven to roast,
Till he looks like a piece of me grandmother's toast;
May he burn in a pile of his own five-pound notes,
And drown in a sea made of concrete.

Landlady's Daughter, not to be confused with Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Susan of DT
Date: 09 Jul 01 - 09:55 PM

a search for @myth will yield songs about the devil, hell, and fairyland (sometimes equated to afterlife) among other things like unicorns, mermaids, silkies, and dragons.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Little Hawk
Date: 09 Jul 01 - 10:16 PM

Gareth - the song you refer to is a variant of the one I mentioned, as recorded by Burl Ives, in my first post that started this thread. It's pretty amusing, as the farmer's wife manages to terrify the official denizens of hell (the little devils and demons) so much that they demand her removal from the hellish environs, and the Devil has to take her back again to the farmer, who is meanwhile probably getting jolly drunk and celebrating...

It's either called "The Devil and the Farmer" or "The Farmer and the Devil" or else it's called "The Farmer's Wife and the Devil"...

- LH


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Aidan Crossey
Date: 10 Jul 01 - 04:12 AM

It's also known in Irish circles as Killieburne Brae. The Dubliners made a great recording.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: GUEST,Lisa
Date: 10 Jul 01 - 04:29 AM

Robert Burns. "The Deil's Awa' Wi' The Exciseman."


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Gareth
Date: 10 Jul 01 - 02:03 PM

Very Much Ta Little Hawk - I suspected that it was me rather than the DT -

But seriously, if the Devil has taken Farmers Wives from Sussex, Ireland, and world widem you would have thought that he would have learn't by now !!

Gareth


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Paddy Plastique
Date: 10 Jul 01 - 02:12 PM

Check the Golden Pages, I think there's a Satan Scolding Wife Removal Service - not sure under which category though...

How about Will Oldham's Palace's 'Idle Hands are the Devil's Playthings' - good ole postmodern Appalachian hellfire ballad ?


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 10 Jul 01 - 02:43 PM

"The bells of hell go ding a ling aling for you but not for me" it's from a song I know only this line and the tune to it.

Jock


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Gareth
Date: 10 Jul 01 - 03:31 PM

Giok - Herewith

The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling,
For you but not for me.
And the little devils have a sing-a-ling-a-ling,
For you but not for me.
Oh death where is they sting-a-ling-a-ling,
Oh grave thy victory?
The Bells of Hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling,
For you but not for me.

Source Ricks Folk Pages under war songs (sorry I cant do a clicky yet)

Certainly WW1, turns up in memoirs of that time

Gareth


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Hawker
Date: 10 Jul 01 - 08:34 PM

Robin Hall and Jimmie MacGregor did a song on their 'Kids Stuff LP years ago called 'The Old Piper' - my kids love it, especially the chorus which goes (in the immitating tones of a learner bag piper.....)
Nya Nya Nya nyn nya nyn nya
Nya nyn nya na ne nya nya nya
Nya nya nyn nya ny nya ny nya
And this the only tune that he could play. can't remember all the words, but
Its about a man wh was old and hoary
Who lived in the toen of Ballymachory
He was the piper who played for moses
And this the only tune that he could play

CHORUS

This old man who was old and hoary
Who lived in the town of Ballymachory
He died one day and he went dwn to Hell
He went down to Hell for to play and he went

CHORUS

cant remember the rest but even the devil couldn't stand the noise and sent him back upstairs for to play etc

anybody got the definitive words?
Cheers
Lucy


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Finn McCool
Date: 10 Jul 01 - 09:54 PM

Let's not forget Dave Van Ronk's version of Stack-O-Lee that contains the verse:

Stack-O-Lee says to the Devil "Devil, let's us have some fun. You stab me with your pitchfork And I'll shoot you with my gun." When you lose your money Learn to lose!

Helluva tune!

--Finn


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 10 Jul 01 - 10:44 PM

if you put "hell" (no quotes) in the DigiTrad search box, you'll get 431 songs containing the word. Many of these refer to the place.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: GUEST,celticblues5
Date: 10 Jul 01 - 11:19 PM

There's a mention of hell in the Austin Lounge Lizards' "Jesus Loves Me," ("Jesus loves me, this I know/and He told me where you're gonna go/there's lots of room for your kind down below" - full lyrics on a different thread.

Flamin' Mamie's last verse (at least in the Willie Dixon version, which is the only one I'm familiar with) is:

Mamie loved her way to Hell
She loved the Devil and she loved him well
Little devils runnin' up and down the wall,
Sayin', "Help us, Daddy, she gonna love us all!"

As others have mentioned, there are lotsa songs that mention the place - e.g. Richard & Linda Thompson's "Hell, Highwater, and Heartache" ("It's been Hell, highwater, and heartache since you've come back to me...").

"The Well Below the Valley-O" is a great song, and I think a version is in the DT.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Oversoul
Date: 10 Jul 01 - 11:41 PM

"Life in Hell"...The Jam (late seventies/early eighty) Paul Weller was the Rush Limbaugh of neo-punk. Christ, they were sooo BRITISH. Dig "Its too bad"-now that song summed up their American popularity, but I still love 'em.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: GUEST,Mikey Joe
Date: 11 Jul 01 - 04:33 AM

Anyone know the song 'Ben The Hackney Coachman' about a coachman who gives the devil a lift to hell.

Mj


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Susanne (skw)
Date: 11 Jul 01 - 05:12 PM

Giok and Gareth - just for the record, 'The Bells of Hell' (or whatever the title) was written by Brendan Behan, for 'The Hostage', I think. Maybe someone should tell Rick?


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Gareth
Date: 11 Jul 01 - 05:28 PM

Interesting, did BB write it or lift it. It turns up as quotations in Eric Hiscox memoirs, and (I think) in "With a Machine Gun to Cambrai (sic)" Memoirs of an infantry man." Will have to be checked in a Libuary Index. Wasn't Partridges Memoirs of the Trenches entitled "The bells of Hell" ?

I vaugley recall it in Joan Littlewoods "Oh What a lovely War" the film version.

Not that it matters overmuch - suspect that whoever the author was, it fitted the theme.

Not intended as a flame, more an explore the sources, I can see Saturday Afternoon is going to b spent in Cardiff Libuary researching !!

Gareth


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 11 Jul 01 - 05:29 PM

That's the devil and he's yelling "I got Brady down here" Brady was a crooked policeman.

The Brothers Four:- Cross country tour.

Jock


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Gareth
Date: 11 Jul 01 - 06:36 PM

giok

Which Brady ?

Ian or a bent copper ?

Gareth


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: LR Mole
Date: 12 Jul 01 - 10:15 AM

As Greil Marcus mentions in"Mystery Train" there's tons of satanic imagery in Robert Johnson: "Me and the Devil Blues", etc., and the Ole Enemy surfaces in any number of Stagger Lee variations (in one, he throws the devil out,"...gonna rule hell by myself". Bromberg does one where Stag gets to hell and says, "...I got to shoot somebody so goddamn bad--tell me where you keep Billy De Lyon?" (To which the Devil replies "You can't shoot Billy De Lyon no more--there ain't room for no more holes.")
A stray BS question for the nautical Catters: depending on who one reads, "Hell to pay" is a reference to tarring the very bottom timber of a ship while it's at sea, as in "Hell (or the devil) to pay and no pitch hot". True?


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Subject: Lyr Add: HELL IN TEXAS
From: GUEST,Winick
Date: 12 Jul 01 - 02:57 PM

The Jam song that was mentioned is actually "Private Hell," though the way they sang it, it could easily be mistaken for "life in Hell."

BTW, "The Farmer's Curst Wife," which I mentioned in a previous post, is the same song as "Kellieburne Brae" and "The Devil and the Farmer's Wife."

I was reminded of another song about Hell in Texas:

HELL IN TEXAS

Oh, the Devil in hell they say he was chained,
And there for a thousand years he remained;
He neither complained nor did he groan,
But decided he'd start up a hell of his own,
Where he could torment the souls of men
Without being shut in a prison pen;
So he asked the Lord if He had any sand
Left over from making this great land.

The Lord He said, "Yes, I have plenty on hand,
But it's away down south on the Rio Grande,
And, to tell you the truth, the stuff is so poor
I doubt if 'twill do for hell any more."
The Devil went down and looked over the truck,
And he said if it came as a gift he was stuck,
For when he'd examined it carefully and well
He decided the place was too dry for a hell.

But the Lord just to get the stuff off His hands
He promised the Devil He'd water the land,
For he had some old water that was of no use,
A regular bog hole that stunk like the deuce.
So the grant it was made and the deed it was given;
The Lord He returned to His place up in heaven.
The Devil soon saw he had everything needed
To make up a hell and so he proceeded.

He scattered tarantulas over the roads,
Put thorns on the cactus and horns on the toads,
He sprinkled the sands with millions of ants
So the man that sits down must wear soles on his pants.
He lengthened the horns of the Texas steer,
And added an inch to the jack rabbit's ear;
He put water puppies in all of the lakes,
And under the rocks he put rattlesnakes.

He hung thorns and brambles on all of the trees,
He mixed up the dust with jiggers and fleas;
The rattlesnake bites you, the scorpion stings,
The mosquito delights you by buzzing his wings.
The heat in the summer's a hundred and ten,
Too hot for the Devil and too hot for men;
And all who remained in that climate soon bore
Cuts, bites, stings, and scratches, and blisters galore.

He quickened the buck of the bronco steed,
And poisoned the feet of the centipede;
The wild boar roams in the black chaparral
It's a hell of a place that we've got for a hell.
He planted red pepper beside of the brooks;
The Mexicans use them in all that they cook.
Just dine with a Greaser and then you will shout,
"I've hell on the inside as well as the out! "

Steve


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Finn McCool
Date: 12 Jul 01 - 03:24 PM

Gareth raises a fascinating question: Did Brenadan Behan write Bells of Hell or lift it for The Hostage? That play does contain a lifted tune: Boys of Kilmichael, which appears in the play as "The 14th Day of November". In the original song, the lyric is "on the 28th day of November", however. In all other respects the lyrics and tune are the same.

Any results from the Cardiff Library that shed light on the Bells question?

--Finn


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Mary in Kentucky
Date: 12 Jul 01 - 03:36 PM

Also from opera, "Orpheus in the Underworld" by Offenbach. (The Can-Can)

Crankee Yankee, when I saw Don Giovanni, I sat on the second row near one of the actors' entrances, Don Juan winked at all the ladies in the audience before he made his entrance. He really was a sexy guy, though quite a cad.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Gareth
Date: 12 Jul 01 - 04:35 PM

Finn McCool et al - I will not be free to visit Cardiff untill Saturday - I will post results if any

Incidently there is another version of the Bells of Hell in the DT

Back to the thread. Last verses of that Beutifull old SWelsh Ballard "Cosher Bailey"

The Crawshays, (Iron Masters of Merthyr) are rejected by the Devil as unfit for the decent folk of hell and told to start thier own hell. Stickes and Patches refers to a primative smelter. And refers to the hell the Crawshays and the Guests made of Merthyr and Dowlais.

Gareth


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Susanne (skw)
Date: 12 Jul 01 - 07:13 PM

Good luck, Gareth, I too would really like to know. And give my love to Cardiff, please!


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Gareth
Date: 12 Jul 01 - 07:17 PM

Susanne et al

Will do!

Gareth from close to Kairdiff !


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Gareth
Date: 12 Jul 01 - 07:48 PM

L R Mole

Sorry nearly missed your coments on "Devil to pay"

traditionaly the Devil was the deck seam nearest the ships side, and in days when ships were ships and men were men it was a right B******d to make water resistant with the working of the side planking in one direction and the deck planking in another. (Yes wooden ships and Yachts flex with the motion of the waves)

Paying was (and is) the practice af sealing the caulking (rough fiber packing wedged into the seams between planks) with Pitch (Ashfelt). It was poured in hot and left to set (see loggerheads the heating irons).

The saying meant a damn difficult job to do and no means of doing so.

Please also see the saying "Between the devil and the deep blue sea" which as I understand it was the choice of two very unpleasent alternatives - stay on deck and take the consequences, or go over the side (aka the Wall).

Some yars ago I was crewing "Grendal" one of the original Dragon 32 racing keelboats on a shunting manouver ib November between Faversham and Chatham. Beutifull clear,cold, windless December.
We were towing with the inflatable dinghy lashed along side. It was off Sheerness at the mouth of the Medway. The dinghy outboard needed refuelling. I was handing down our last Jerrican of Petrol. I sliped. It was a choice of losing the Jerrican or going in with it. The Medway in December aint the Barents Sea but I can assure you it was ******* cold.

And I din't have any dry clothing.

"Grendal" is of tradition carvell construction (Built 1948)- Yes I was between "Devil and the muddy, cold water of the Medway"

If God had intended us to build wooden boats, trees would come in two part packs !

Gareth


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Gareth
Date: 14 Jul 01 - 02:53 PM

The Bells of Hell.

Sorry, the text &/or Author of The Bells of Hell" seems to have disappeared off the radar. An hours research in the Libuary at Blackwood which has a good history and music reference section revealled no attribution to the Author or Origin of this song.

I regret that unforseen circumstances kept me away from Cardiff Central Libuary today, but I'll give it a go next week end (Sorry us wage slaves have to earn their daily bread)

Gareth (still searching)


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Susan of DT
Date: 14 Jul 01 - 09:54 PM

(from dick greenhaus) Bells of Hell Go Ting-a-ling-a-ling was current in WWI. Don't know how far back it goes, but it certainly is older than Mr. Behan.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: John P
Date: 15 Jul 01 - 11:12 AM

Death and the Maiden


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Susanne (skw)
Date: 15 Jul 01 - 08:03 PM

Thanks, Susan! I think I got the idea Behan wrote it himself from Joan Littlewood's memoirs.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Wolfgang
Date: 16 Jul 01 - 06:33 AM

oen of the best (very) trad. songs about the Hell is:
Schneiders Höllenfahrt (A tailor in Hell)

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Gareth
Date: 21 Jul 01 - 09:38 AM

I spent the morning in the main Libuary in Newport.

"The Bells of Hell" does not appear in any of the major antholgies of the Songs, or poems of the First World War.

Quotations from it appear as book titles, or prefaces, but none that I can find that were published pre 1945.

Sussane (skw) - You may be right when you attribute the definitrive vision to Behan. It would not be the first time a "modern song" has aquired an artificial history.

I think, but can not prove, "Fiddlers Green" was a fairly modern song. Can anybody comment on this ?

One thing that did strike me is that much of the "trench folk" songs seemed to have their origin in Childrens songs or hymns, adapted by the Tommy Aitkens to express thier feelings and frustrations.

Again can M'Catters comment - or should this be a theme for a new thread ?

Gareth


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Jock Morris
Date: 21 Jul 01 - 09:50 AM

How about 'The Pub With No Beer'? Sure sounds like hell to me:-)

Scott


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Susanne (skw)
Date: 23 Jul 01 - 08:25 PM

Gareth, 'Fiddlers Green' (which may sound like hell to some people) was written by John Conolly. Don't know the year, but he's still very much alive!


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Gareth
Date: 24 Jul 01 - 04:13 PM

Susanne (skw) Nice point - interstingly "Fiddlers Green" as a phrase for seamans paradise, would seem to have been around for at least 200 years.

Jock M - I appreciate that the dog hides, but a pub of sober Australians - the mind boggles !

Gareth


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Gareth
Date: 24 Jul 01 - 04:17 PM

Susanne (skw) Nice point - interstingly "Fiddlers Green" as a phrase for seamans paradise, would seem to have been around for at least 200 years.

Jock M - I appreciate that the dog hides, but a pub of sober Australians - the mind boggles !

Gareth


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: GUEST,Songster Bob
Date: 24 Jul 01 - 04:38 PM

Haven't seen "Tying a Knot in the Devil's Tail" mentioned, though it's probably one of those 4800 mentions (or whatever the number) of "Hell" in the DT. I'm also glad someone posted "The Devil Made Texas."

Bob C.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Dead Horse
Date: 25 Jul 01 - 05:30 PM

Hows about the shanty Rise Me Up From Down Below? A damn fine shanty if ever there was one.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Brían
Date: 25 Jul 01 - 06:15 PM

That reminds me that my radio debut was when a friend played a recording of me singing BOYS FROM THE COUNTY HELL on our local community-based radio staion as a promotion for a benefit concert. I didn't know about it until people in the college I went to told me about it. It was probably not the song I would have chosen to showcase my talent. A great song, though.

Brían.


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Subject: Lyr Add: BREAKFAST IN HELL (Slaid Cleaves)
From: bobbi
Date: 26 Jul 01 - 03:51 PM

BREAKFAST IN HELL
By Slaid Cleaves.

In the melting snows of Ontario,
Where the wind'll make you shiver,
'Twas the month of May up in Georgian Bay
Near the mouth of the Musquash River,
Where the bears prowl and the coyotes howl
And you can hear the osprey scream.
Back in '99 we were cutting pine
And sending it down the stream.

Young Sandy Gray came to Go Home Bay
All the way from P.E.I.,
Where the weather's rough and it makes you tough;
No man's afraid to die.
Sandy came a-smilin', 30,000 Islands
Was the place to claim his glory.
Now Sandy's gone, but his name lives on,
And this is Sandy's story.

CHORUS ONE:
Young Sandy Gray lives on today
In the echoes of a mighty yell.
Listen close, and you'll hear a ghost,
In this story that I tell,
Boys, this story that I tell.

Now Sandy Gray was boss of the men
Who'd toss the trees onto the shore.
They'd come and go till they'd built a floe
Of 100,000 logs or more.
And he'd ride 'em down toward Severn Sound
To cut 'em up in the mills for timber.
And ships would haul, spring, summer, and fall,
'Til the ice came in December.

One Sabbath Day, big Sandy Gray
Came into camp with a peavey on his shoulder.
With a thunder crack, he dropped his ax
And the room got a little bit colder.
Said, "Come, all you. We've got work to do.
We've gotta give 'er all we can give 'er.
There's a jam of logs at the little jog
Near the mouth of the Musquash River."

With no time to pray on the Lord's Day,
They were hoping for God's forgiveness,
But the jam was high in a troubled sky
And they set about their business.
They poked with their poles and ran with the rolls
And tried to stay on their feet.
Every trick they tried, and one man cried,
"This log jam's got us beat."

CHORUS TWO:
But Sandy Gray was not afraid
And he let out a mighty yell:
"I'll be damned! We'll break this jam,
Or it's breakfast in Hell,
Boys, breakfast in Hell."

Now every one of the men did the work of ten
And Sandy scrambled up to the top.
He's working like a dog heaving 30-foot logs
And it looked like he'd never stop.
They struggled on, those men so strong,
Till the jam began to sway,
Then they dove for cover to the banks of the river
All except for Sandy Gray.

Now with thoughts of death, they held their breath
As they saw their friend go down.
They all knew in a second or two
He'd be crushed or frozen or drowned.
They saw him fall and they heard him call,
Just once and then it was over.
Young Sandy Gray gave his life that day
Near the mouth of the Musquash River.

CHORUS THREE:
But Sandy Gray was not afraid,
And he let out a mighty yell:
"I'll be damned! We'll break that jam,
Or it's breakfast in Hell,
Boys, breakfast in Hell."

East of Giant's Tomb, there's plenty of room,
There's no fences and no walls;
And if you listen close, you'll hear a ghost,
Down by Sandy Gray Falls.
Through the tops of the trees, you'll hear in the breeze,
The echoes of a mighty yell:
"I'll be damned! We'll break this jam,
Or it's breakfast in Hell."

CHORUS FOUR:
And Sandy Gray lives on today
In the echoes of a mighty yell:
"I'll be damned! We'll break this jam,
Or it's breakfast in Hell,
Boys, breakfast in Hell."

~~~~~~
Note - P.E.I. is Prince Edward Island.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Gareth
Date: 20 Oct 01 - 07:22 AM

To resrect this thread - Another Older thread seems to give some better provonance to the "Bells of Hell" as a WW1 song.

I copy the entire post -

Subject: RE: Anti-war songs frm WWI From: Wotcha Date: 02-Mar-01 - 11:28 AM

Lots of the bawdy trench songs survive in modern use as rugby songs -- talk about a underground folk process ... The Hash House Harriers seem to have picked up a few as well. If you read the literature of the immediate post-war (WWI) years, you will find references to some of these songs. "The Bells of Hell", based on a child's rhyme, was used in a 1920s novel (I want to say the author was Noel Coward ...). Cheers, Brian

And give a Clicky for the thread

The answer was in Mucat all the time !!!

Gareth


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: GUEST,garret
Date: 25 Jul 03 - 07:20 PM

Wildlone mentions Pete Coe doing a Trevor Carter song called the "PR man from hell". Does anybody have the lyrics of this song?


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Joe_F
Date: 26 Jul 03 - 07:13 PM

"The Farmer's Curst Wife" is Child 278 (two versions there, many others in circulation).

"The Coal Owner and the Pitman's Wife" (in DigiTrad) contains the nice detail that they are turning the poor folks out of Hell to make room for the rich.


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: GUEST
Date: 05 Dec 13 - 04:16 AM

There are no end which brush the gates of Hell
The Wife of Usher's Well
Thomas the Rhymer
The False Knight
The Holy Well


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Thompson
Date: 05 Dec 13 - 07:03 AM

Is it true that the women are worse than the men?
Right fol, right fol, tiddy fol day
Is it true that the women are worse than the men?
They go down to hell and get kicked out again
With me right fol dol, tiddy fol dol
Right fol, right fol, tiddy fol day

There was an old man lived in Killyburn Brae
There was an old man lived in Killyburn Brae
And he had a wife, was the plague of his days

The devil he came to the man with the plow
The devil he came to the man with the plow
Said one of your family I will have now

Says he, 'Me old man, I have come for you wife'
Says he, 'Me old man, I have come for you wife
For I hear she's the plague and torment of your life'

The devil he hoisted her up on his back
The devil he hoisted her up on his back
And straight down to hell with her he did pack

There were two little devils a-playing with chains
There were two little devils a-playing with chains
She lifted her stick and she scattered their brains

There were two other devils a-playing at ball
There were two other devils a-playing at ball
Said 'Take her away or she'll murder us all'

The devil he hoisted her up on his back
The devil he hoisted her up on his back
And to the old man, with her he did pack

Said he 'Me old man, here's your wife safe and well'
Said he 'Me old man, here's your wife safe and well
She wouldn't be kept, not even in hell'

So, it's true that the women are worse than the men
It's true that the women are worse than the men
They go down to hell and get kicked out again


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Subject: RE: Songs About Hell
From: Bobert
Date: 05 Dec 13 - 09:04 AM

The best song out there about hell is Ray Wylie Hubbard's "Conversation with the Devil"...

BTW, Ray Wylie, for those who do know know it, wrote "Redneck Mother"...

B~


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