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Lyr Req: Policeman

GUEST,carter721@usa.net 27 Jan 02 - 07:33 PM
Sorcha 27 Jan 02 - 07:38 PM
GUEST 27 Jan 02 - 07:44 PM
Sorcha 27 Jan 02 - 07:45 PM
Sorcha 27 Jan 02 - 07:50 PM
Jim Dixon 28 Jan 02 - 10:35 PM
GUEST 29 Jan 02 - 07:02 AM
RangerSteve 29 Jan 02 - 08:28 AM
GUEST 29 Jan 02 - 07:38 PM
GUEST,Al 30 Jan 02 - 12:53 AM
leprechaun 30 Jan 02 - 05:52 AM
GUEST 30 Jan 02 - 07:35 AM
RangerSteve 30 Jan 02 - 08:06 AM
GUEST 30 Jan 02 - 03:51 PM
leprechaun 30 Jan 02 - 05:30 PM
GUEST 30 Jan 02 - 05:35 PM
GUEST 07 Aug 12 - 07:55 PM
nickp 08 Aug 12 - 04:03 AM
GUEST,Ancient Mariner 08 Aug 12 - 11:55 AM
nickp 08 Aug 12 - 12:26 PM
Mik2 22 Feb 14 - 03:27 PM
Jim Carroll 22 Feb 14 - 04:01 PM
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Subject: lyrics to 'policeman'
From: GUEST,carter721@usa.net
Date: 27 Jan 02 - 07:33 PM

Hi, I am looking for the words to the song"policman" This song has apparently been done by several oldtime groups...thanks


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: lyrics to 'policeman'
From: Sorcha
Date: 27 Jan 02 - 07:38 PM

Do you mean this one? If so, scroll down, the tune is there too.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: lyrics to 'policeman'
From: GUEST
Date: 27 Jan 02 - 07:44 PM

Thanks but that is not the song.The 2nd verse is Big police settin'on a log this morning (3x) There finger on the trigger and high on the hog

Hope this helps. It was recorded by Kenny mills and i believe tommy jarrell....thanks


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: lyrics to 'policeman'
From: Sorcha
Date: 27 Jan 02 - 07:45 PM

OK, I'll look for that one.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: lyrics to 'policeman'
From: Sorcha
Date: 27 Jan 02 - 07:50 PM

No luck at all, sorry.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: lyrics to 'policeman'
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 28 Jan 02 - 10:35 PM

The phrase "sitting on a log … finger on the trigger … eye on the hog" occurs in these 3 songs in DigiTrad:

TALKING BLUES

ORIGINAL TALKING BLUES

SALTY DOG BLUES

…and one song in an old discussion thread:

EAST TEXAS TALKING BLUES

If none of these is exactly what you were looking for, maybe you can adapt one of them to your purpose.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: lyrics to 'policeman'
From: GUEST
Date: 29 Jan 02 - 07:02 AM

Thanks for info but unfortunately not the lyrics I am looking for...I am hopeful someone knows this song


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: lyrics to 'policeman'
From: RangerSteve
Date: 29 Jan 02 - 08:28 AM

This isn't something I want to do, being a cop, but here's the first verse: Police come and I didn't want to go this morning (3X) Shot him down with my forty-four, this morning.

The rest of the verses are usually generic verses that show up in lots of old-time country songs. I don't remember them, partly because I just woke up and haven't gotten to my second cup of coffee yet, and also because I try to avoid this song.

Oh, yeah, in order to make the word "police" fit the tune, you have to put the accent on the first syllable - POE-leese.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: lyrics to 'policeman'
From: GUEST
Date: 29 Jan 02 - 07:38 PM

Ranger Steve,Thanks for the info!! I think this just a great old song.I play clawhammer banjo and this song fits it perfectly.I would be glad to treat you to second cup of coffee if you could come up with a few more verses.My 8 year old daughter would appreciate it and says it would it make her day!!Thanks again.......


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: lyrics to 'policeman'
From: GUEST,Al
Date: 30 Jan 02 - 12:53 AM

I started to put down the lyrics I know from going to Galax years ago and hearing Tommy Jarrell and others sing it. But you know what? The lyrics are so distastfully racist that I deleted them. Just can't do it. Sorry. There are some gussied up verses that evolved from the racist ones, but they are no good. Along about 1984 or so, it was the 50th anniversary of the old fiddler's contest in Galax. Ronald Reagan was president. The Virginia state troopers were marching into people's camps four abreast looking for drugs and "untaxed whiskey". The musicians started an early warning system to avoid search, seizure, and jail. When someone saw a po-lice man, he or she would start playing Po-lice Man, and then others down the line would follow suit. Kind of like drums in Africa. It worked like a charm. There's more to the story, but it's late and I'm tired. Have a nice day.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: lyrics to 'policeman'
From: leprechaun
Date: 30 Jan 02 - 05:52 AM

I'd pass on the coffee.

Maybe there are some lovely cop-killer video games we can find for Guest's 8 year old daughter.

Once I was standing outside a 7-Eleven store watching a fellow approach a cocaine dealer I had arrested several times. The drug dealer pointed at me and shook his head. (I was in plain clothes) The buyer walked up to me and said, "So you're the PO-lice," (accent on the first syllable) while poking me in the chest.

I arrested him for harassment. (offensive physical contact)

I guess I'm lucky he didn't shoot me with his .44.

Stay safe Ranger Steve. Look what some people are teaching their eight year old daughters.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: lyrics to 'policeman'
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Jan 02 - 07:35 AM

Wow ,I certainly DID not plan for this request to go this way!!!I guess being a racist is a state of mind and being one the least racist people you would ever meet,I guess i just never had any intentions of going this way.As for the content for this particular song i do not see the racial content at all, at least in the version i heard briefly,As for other content ,shootin someone with a "44" is certainly not whatI profess of being appropriate,but this is just an "old time song" Many other songs of the time period have similar lyrics ,,i.e. jessie james ,john hardy,Mole in the ground ,,,and the list goes on and on.FOR THE record for those of you concerned,My daughter lives in an Wholesome,non-racist and Christian environment and we happen to like old time music.My apologies to any who took this request for more than it was.For those of you who prejudged this request,mmmm ..what is racism but merely prejudging. For the person who passed on the lyrics because his version was racist,hey,thanks I would not want that version anyway .Ranger Steve thanks again.By the way you would be really surprised what my profession is .... I recently found this site and thought it would be fun,did not realize it would be like this..Too bad it could be nice..


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: lyrics to 'policeman'
From: RangerSteve
Date: 30 Jan 02 - 08:06 AM

Guest, sorry, but I don't know anymore lyrics. Like I said, the first verse turns me off from the song. Personally, I don't think you're raising your daughter wrong. But then, I've never had a gun pointed at me, let alone been shot at. If I had, I probably would have just passed this thread by. Give Leprechaun a break, he's probably seen some real action on the job. This site is fun. You should try it out for a while. Usually it's entertaining. I've been spoken to sharply here, but people usually just get over it. Keep coming back, you'll probably end up joining.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: lyrics to 'policeman'
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Jan 02 - 03:51 PM

Ranger Steve ,Thanks again for the response.As I said before , I Did not mean to get anything started by the request.By the the way,I have "been there and done that" having been involved in thousands of investigations during my career,had a gun pointed at me, and yes, been shot at...


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: lyrics to 'policeman'
From: leprechaun
Date: 30 Jan 02 - 05:30 PM

Sorry Guest. I'm sure you wouldn't shoot me. I might like the song too if I could hear it. I do encounter a lot of vitriol in my job. Most of the time I don't fire it back. I was thinking the eight year old daughter thing was a flame and I flamed back. Don't let it turn you away. Most of us don't take things too personally for more than a few postings. You should get a cool nickname and join so you won't be confused with flamerGuest.

We had a relevant discussion about some cop-killer rap songs a few years ago.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: lyrics to 'policeman'
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Jan 02 - 05:35 PM

leprechaun,,thanks for the apology..Good day to all!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Policeman
From: GUEST
Date: 07 Aug 12 - 07:55 PM

I know something I ain't goanna tell this morning (x2) I know something I ain't goanna tell, I ain't goin' to heaven I'm goin' to hell this morning.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Policeman
From: nickp
Date: 08 Aug 12 - 04:03 AM

Dirk Powell does a good version.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Policeman
From: GUEST,Ancient Mariner
Date: 08 Aug 12 - 11:55 AM

I like it by Foghorn String Band, and here's some I would sing.
POLICE in A

PO-LICE COME, HE DIDN'T WANT TO GO (THIS MORNING) x 3
SHOT HIM IN THE HEAD WITH A 44

OLD UNCLE JOHN LAYING ON A LOG
FINGER ON THE TRIGGER, EYE ON THE HOG

PULLED THE TRIGGER, GUN WENT BANG
GET THE GAMBLE LET HIM HANG

OLD UNCLE JOHN SITTING ON A PLOW
WANTS TO GET A WOMAN BUT DON'T KNOW HOW

KNOW A LITTLE SECRET I AINT GONNA TELL
I WANNA GO TO HEAVEN BUT I'M GOING TO HELL

ROLL YOUR DICE, HAVE YOUR FUN
RUN LIKE THE DEVIL WHEN THE PO-LICE COME


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Policeman
From: nickp
Date: 08 Aug 12 - 12:26 PM

Then there's one that goes something like:

Down went the trigger, bang went the gun
Hitched him to the wagon and we hauled him home


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Policeman
From: Mik2
Date: 22 Feb 14 - 03:27 PM

Quite an old thread, here is two nice lyrics pages on Bluegrass Messengers
(the author also draws lyrics from Mudcat):

Policeman (or Police , Tell Old Bill , This Morning this evening so soon ,
-Red Hot Breakdown (Earl Johnson) shares some verses, but is a much different melody.
Skillet Lickers had a tune called "Settin' in the Chimney Jamb" that is similar.

Reed Martin's version
(Oldtime Banjo in America - Kicking Mule label -out of print)

Kenny Hall and the Sweets Mill String Band
(still available as CD... and vinyl if you know where to look)

Both of these versions have altered the text or used other sources than Tommy Jarrell did.
Reed Martin's version is a little bit more strange and in modal, one of few recordings where he sings.

Here is what Tommy sang on the 'County Vinyl Down to the Cider Mill' (tune reissued
on the CD 'Stay All Night and don't go home' (rec 1967):


Police come I didn't want to go this mornin',
Police come I didn't want to go this mornin',
Police come I didn't want to go,
Shot him in the head with my forty-four this mornin'.

(Plays the tune through 3 times between the verses).

"Two little children" layin' in the bed this mornin' (2x)
Two little children layin' in the bed
One rolled over to the other and said: 'It's morning'

Bull frog jumped from bank to bank this mornin' (2x)
Bull frog jumped from bank to bank
Skinned his whole back from shank to shank this mornin'

I know something I ain't gonna tell this mornin' (2x)
I know something I ain't gonna tell...
I want to go to heaven in a coconut shell this mornin'

"Great big fellow" layin' on a log this mornin' (2x)
Great big fellow layin' on a log
Finger on the trigger and eye on the hog this mornin'

Down went the trigger and bang went the gun this mornin' (2x)
Down went the trigger and bang went the gun
Wish I had a wagon to haul him home this mornin'

(replace the quoted stanzas with the obvious words to get the original verses).

Another version is on Heritage with Kyle Creed (originally on Kyle's 'Mountain label')

A third is on Ray Alden's Field Recorders Collective, where Jarrell omits those verses (Round Peak Vol 2).

The County version is to my ears the best version, because of the energy and humor placed into it,
unfortunately much of the original verses are not good to sing in front of an audience) .

If you still want to sing all kinds of authentic and old verses many misunderstandings can occur
'if' you forget to explain the historical context of these floating verses, and what kind of times they were written for.

Rewriting:

I think really some 'floating verses' can be altered (processed) or omitted, what does matter
is your own conviction when singing "your chosen" lyrics. While it may be temporarily fun to chock any audiences or fellow band members singing the 'old minstrel and black-face show (etc) lyrics ,
you can also search up and/or write your own lyrics in the tune's tradition.
In this case, I think some kind of rhyming need to be there, and leaving out
the mention of TVs, smartphones whatever... look up similar tunes in songbooks and move verses from them to this one
as long as they fit the meter.
This is no guarantee that your version will survive,
but if the verses are good enough I would certainly think so.
If a song should be able to survive, one will have to work on it.

--------------------------------
Here are two verses from the Kenny Hall version:

Shoot your dice and have your fun this mornin' (2x)
Shoot your dice and have your fun
Run like hell when the police come this mornin'

Shoot your dice and roll 'em in the sand this mornin' (2x)
Shoot your dice and roll 'em in the sand
Ain't gonna work for no damn man this mornin'


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE NEW POLICEMEN (Ewan MacColl)
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 22 Feb 14 - 04:01 PM

THE NEW POLICEMEN        (1968)
'THE YARD LETS ITS HAIR DOWN. Teams of suitably young Scotland Yard detectives will emerge on the Sunday demonstration deliberately unshaven, dirty and wild-eyed ... They will defiantly flaunt unbeautiful beatnik gear and set about blending into the jumbo jamboree of anti-American demonstrators in Trafalgar Square ... It will be an unrivalled opportunity to identify and label for future reference many of the uneasy strangers in our midst.' (The Daily Mirror, March 15 1968)

This song was written for the 1968_ Festival of Fools and was sung by two 'policemen', one a rookie and the other a seasoned veteran.


tune: traditional English ('I Should Like to Be a Policeman')
new words and trad arr: Ewan MacColl
© 1968 Stormking Music, Inc.

The Chief Commissioners at the Yard have been in consultation,
And they've decided that the force needs re-orientation;
New regulations call for all to start their whiskers growing,
For a beard, indeed, is a friend in need when the winds of change are blowing.

Chorus:
The emphasis has moved away from the well-known criminal classes;
It's students we must watch today and the ones they call 'The Masses'.

Important people sometimes speak to us in friendly voices,
Addressing us as 'Officer' when entering Rolls Royces.
But we would forfeit things like that if we wore jeans and sweaters.
Surely it's enough reward to know we're working for our betters. (chorus)

For thirty years I've trod this beat, maintaining law and order,
From Berkeley Square to Glasshouse Street, right up to the Soho Border;
I know the screwsmen, cons and crimps, and many a little beauty
Has given me the odd slice off the joint while doing me course of duty.                                 
(chorus)

At Hendon they impressed on us the need for adaptation;
The enemy now comprises nine-tenths of the population.
There's nothing new in that! You don't need beards and overalls, man,
To give the knee to the citizenry in the old orchestra stalls, man. (chorus)

They teach us now to deal with crowds so that the press won't hammer us.
Just knee some bastard in the crotch while smiling at the cameras.
You've got to watch your step these days when the TV boys are shooting.
Just use some guile, give a great big smile while putting the good old boot in.                                 
(chorus)


You must admit that times are changed. You cannot help agreeing
It would be a great advantage if we looked like human beings.
I don't agree, take it from me, nothing could be absurder!
For a man adorned by a uniform can get away with murder.

You can keep your scientific ways, your double-talk and disguises,
The old way's good enough for me and full of nice surprises.
What's better than to creep up on a couple in doorway or in shelter,
And flash your light and watch the fright in the eyes of a hot young belter?
(chorus)

To safeguard property and those who own it is our function.
Agreed! That's why you need a uniform, likewise a truncheon.
To beat a bloke insensible needs no sophistication.
You're behind the times! A bashing now is called 'a confrontation'.

And yet, for all you say, the new way has its compensations.
There's bags of scope for blokes like us on these here demonstrations.
There's heads to smash and birds to bash for extra satisfaction,
And Callaghan hands out compliments at the end of all the action. (chorus)


The New Policeman


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