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Lyr Req/Add: Drunkard's Lone Child

DigiTrad:
DRUNKARD'S CHILD
DRUNKARDS SON
THE DRUNKARD'S BOY
THE DRUNKARD'S LONE CHILD (2)


Related threads:
(origins) Origins: Little Bessie (15)
Lyr/Chords Req: Little Bessie (8)
Lyr Req: The Drunkard's Son (Hank Snow) (12)
Lyr/Chords Add: Drunkard's Child (Parkhurst) (5)
Lyr Req: Mother take me in your arms/Little Bessie (8)
Lyr Add: 'Another' Drunkard's Child (10)
Lyr Add: The Drunkard's Son (from Utah Phillips) (9)


GUEST,Newfiegirl 24 Feb 03 - 08:23 PM
GUEST,Q 24 Feb 03 - 08:36 PM
Malcolm Douglas 24 Feb 03 - 09:02 PM
GUEST,Q 24 Feb 03 - 11:16 PM
Malcolm Douglas 24 Feb 03 - 11:44 PM
Joe Offer 22 Nov 06 - 04:15 PM
Joe Offer 22 Nov 06 - 04:18 PM
Joe Offer 22 Nov 06 - 04:25 PM
Joe Offer 22 Nov 06 - 06:20 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 22 Nov 06 - 10:31 PM
GUEST,Sean Geil 22 Apr 09 - 01:49 AM
GUEST 22 Apr 09 - 05:19 AM
GUEST 22 Apr 09 - 05:27 AM
Artful Codger 27 Apr 09 - 07:53 AM
Artful Codger 27 Apr 09 - 07:56 AM
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Subject: Lyr Req: 'Drunkards Lone Child' an old song
From: GUEST,Newfiegirl
Date: 24 Feb 03 - 08:23 PM

I'm looking for the lyrics to this old song, sure would appreciate your help, I'm not sure if the name of the song is...
A Drunkards Lone Child.
Thanks in advance...God Bless.


I'm a little lone girl in this cruel world so wild
God look down and pity a drunkards lone child
Look down and pity and soon come to me
And take me to d'well with mother. ....
...............
..........
..........
She sleeps on a hill,in a bed made off clay
How cold it did seem to lay mother away
She's gone with the angels no one can I see
As dear is the face of my mother to me


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Drunkards Lone Child' an old song
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 24 Feb 03 - 08:36 PM

Words and music by Mrs Ruth Young. 1880. In American Memory. Enter the title in the search blank for the sheet music. There are two different songs with that title there, but yours is the one with sheet music.
Click for sheet music


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Drunkards Lone Child' an old song
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 24 Feb 03 - 09:02 PM

See also, in the DT:

THE DRUNKARD'S LONE CHILD (2)

DRUNKARD'S CHILD

and in the Forum:

Lyr Add: Little Bessie

When looking for, for example, drunkards, you need also to try drunkard's.

It really isn't very hard to learn how to use the search engine.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Drunkards Lone Child' an old song
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 24 Feb 03 - 11:16 PM

It is easy to get the wrong information too.
The song in the DT labeled Drunkard's Child should be titled "Drunkard's Lone Child." The DT does not give attribution.
The chorus is incomplete. The last verse has been borrowed from "Little Bessie" (or whatever its real name is). Spaeth is not the best source (DT credit is given to him for this collage).
The midi doesn't match well with the sheet music, either!
The Ruth Young song is the one looked for by Newfie Girl, or at least the original of it.

Another "Drunkard's Lone Child" in the DT is in the Forum, one of the Little Bessies (not the "folk" version)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Drunkards Lone Child' an old song
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 24 Feb 03 - 11:44 PM

True; you're right to make that point. This is a very good place to get information; but also a very good place to be given wrong information. It's important for people to learn how to look for things for themselves to begin with, I think.


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Subject: DT Correction: The Drunkard's Lone Child (Spaeth)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 22 Nov 06 - 04:15 PM

Since the DT version purports to be from Spaeth, I think it should be an exact transcription and use Spaeth's title, even though the lyrics from Spaeth may be flawed. The DT has a good transcription from Spaeth, but there are OCR errors. Here is my transcription of the lyrics from Spaeth:

THE DRUNKARD'S LONE CHILD

I'm alone, all alone, my friends all have fled
My father's a drunkard, my mother is dead;
I'm a poor little girl, I wander and weep
For the voice of my mother to sing me to sleep.
She sleeps on the hill, in a bed made of clay,
How cold it did seem to lay mother away.
She's gone with the angels, and none do I see
So dear as the face of my mother to me.

CHORUS:
I'm a little lone girl in this cold world so wild,
God look down and pity the drunkard's lone child.
Look down and pity, Oh! soon come to me,
Take me to dwell with mother and Thee.

We were so happy till father drank rum;
Then all our sorrows and troubles begun.
Mother grew paler and wept every day;
Baby and I were too hungry to play.
Slowly they faded and one summer night
Found their sweet faces all silent and white
And with big tears slowly dropping I said,
"Father's a drunkard and mother is dead."
CHORUS

Oh, if some temperance workers could find
Poor wretched father and speak very kind,
If they could stop him from drinking, why then,
I would feel very happy again.
Is it too late? Men of temperance, please try,
For poor little Bessie will soon starve and die.
All day long I've been begging for bread.
Father's a drunkard and mother is dead.
CHORUS

From Weep Some More, My Lady (Sigmund Spaeth, 1927)
@child @temperance @drink @orphan
filename[ DRNKCHLD
TUNE FILE: DRNKCHLD
CLICK TO PLAY
RG


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Subject: Info: Drunkards Lone Child
From: Joe Offer
Date: 22 Nov 06 - 04:18 PM

Here's the Traditional Ballad Index entry on this song:

Drunkard's Lone Child, The

DESCRIPTION: "Out in the gloomy night sadly I roam, No one to love me, no friends and no home, Nobody cares for me, no one would cry Even if poor little Bessie should die." Bessie is alone: "Father's a drunkard and mother is dead." She hopes father will sober up
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1921 (Brown)
KEYWORDS: drink orphan children
FOUND IN: US(Ap,SE,So)
REFERENCES (6 citations):
Randolph 309, "The Drunkard's Lone Child" (4 texts plus an excerpt, 3 tunes)
Randolph/Cohen, pp. 257-259, "The Drunkard's Lone Child" (1 text, 1 tune -- Randolph's 309A)
BrownIII 25, "The Drunkard's Lone Child" (1 text plus a fragment and mention of 1 more)
Spaeth-WeepMore, pp. 191-192, "The Drunkard's Lone Child" (1 text, 1 tune)
cf. Gardner/Chickering, p. 477, "Bessie, the Drunkard's Lone Child" (source notes only)
DT, DRNKCHLD* DRNKCHL2*

Roud #723
RECORDINGS:
Dock Boggs, "Drunkard's Lone Child" (on Boggs1, BoggsCD1)
Walter Coon, "Father's a Drunkard and Mother is Dead" (Conqueror 7271, 1929)
Arthur Fields, "The Drunkard's Lone Child" (Grey Gull 4200, 1928)

CROSS-REFERENCES:
cf. "The Little Beggar Boy" (lyrics)
cf. "The Drunkard's Child (I)" (plot)
cf. "Father, Dear Father, Come Home with Me Now" (theme) and references there
Notes: Cohen, in his edition of Randolph, has extensive notes on thie origin of this song; they boil down to, "Something is fishy here." - RBW
File: R309

Go to the Ballad Search form
Go to the Ballad Index Instructions

The Ballad Index Copyright 2006 by Robert B. Waltz and David G. Engle.


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Subject: ADD Version: The Drunkard's Lone Child
From: Joe Offer
Date: 22 Nov 06 - 04:25 PM

The American Memory Collection at the Library of Congress has this:



THE DRUNKARD'S LONE CHILD

Out in the gloomy night sadly I roam,
I've no mother now, no friends, no home;
Nobody cares for me, no one would cry,
Even if poor little Bessie should die!
Barefoot and tired, I've wandered all day.
Asking for work--but I'm too small, they say;
On the damp ground I must now lay my head--
Father's a drunkard, and Mother is dead!

Chorus: Mother, oh! why did you leave me alone,
With no one to love me, no friends, and no home!
Dark is the night and the storm rages wild;
God! pity Bessie, the drunkard's lone child.

We were so happy--till father drank rum:
Then all our sorrows and troubles begun;
Mother grew paler, and wept every day;
Baby and I were too hungry to play--
Slowly they faded, and one summer's night
Found their sweet faces all silent and white--
And, with big tears slowly dropping, I said:
Father's a drunkard, and Mother is dead!

Chorus.

Oh! if some temperance men only could find
Poor wretched Father, and speak very kind:
If they could stop him from drinking: why, then
I would feel very happy again!
Is it too late? Men of temperance, please try:
For, little Bessie will soon starve and die:
All the day long I've been begging for bread--
Father's drunkard, and Mother is dead!

Chorus.

from an undated song sheet, H. De Marsan, Publisher, ... 60 Chatham Street, N. Y.
Masato posted this in the Little Bessie thread, but I've included it here for comparison.


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Subject: ADD Version: The Drunkard's Lone Child (R. Young)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 22 Nov 06 - 06:20 PM

Now, here's a puzzlement - the sheet music Q linked to at American Memory Collection has the same first verse and chorus as the song in DT/Spaeth. The second and third verses come from the song sheet, which is also at American Memory. So, is Ruth Young the author and the Spaeth version a derivative, or what? Which is the chicken and which the egg?
-Joe-

THE DRUNKARD'S LONE CHILD
(words and music by Mrs. Ruth Young)

I'm alone, all alone, my friends all have fled
My father's a drunkard, my mother is dead;
I'm a poor little girl, I wander and weep
For the voice of my mother to sing me to sleep.
She sleeps on the hill, in a bed made of clay,
How cold it did seem to lay mother away.
She's gone with the angels, and none do I see
So dear as the face of my mother to me.

CHORUS:
I'm a little lone girl in this cold world so wild,
God look down and pity the drunkard's lone child.
Look down and pity, Oh! soon come to me,
Take me to dwell with mother and Thee.

'Tis springtime on earth, the birds seem so glad;
I listen, and wonder, my heart is so sad;
Sweet flow'rs bloom around, the crowd wanders by,
But the form of my mother no longer is nigh.
Last night in my dreams she seemed to draw near,
She pressed me as fondly as when she was here,-
She smiled on me sweetly, and fondled my brow,
And whispered, "Sleep on, I am watching thee now."
CHORUS


Publisher: W.W. Whitney, Toledo, Ohio, 1880
Be sure to takke a look at the Sheet music - the cover art is wonderful.


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: 'Drunkards Lone Child' an old song
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 22 Nov 06 - 10:31 PM

Spaeth had a small staff of poorly trained people to do his leg work, and help prepare scripts for his broadcasts, and mistakes are not uncommon.
As you say, the first verse and chorus are Young's; the rest seems to have come from another song.
Search through the 'drunkard' songs at American Memory and the verses will probably show up..

The De Marsan text was also printed by Johnson in Philadelphia and Schmidt in Baltimore- copies abound and I found a couple offered for sale.


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: Drunkard's Lone Child
From: GUEST,Sean Geil
Date: 22 Apr 09 - 01:49 AM

does anybody have the lyrics to the Doc Boggs version? there is just a few things i can't make out.


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: Drunkard's Lone Child
From: GUEST
Date: 22 Apr 09 - 05:19 AM

SEAN -

Post what you have worked out - and someone here will undoubtably fill in the holes you can't make out.


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Subject: Lyr Add: DRUNKARD'S LONE CHILD (from Dock Boggs)
From: GUEST
Date: 22 Apr 09 - 05:27 AM

Dock Boggs - Drunkard's Lone Child

I'm alone, all alone; my friends all have fled.
My father, he's a drunkard; my mother, she is dead.
I'm a poor little child and I wander and weep
For the voice of my mother to sing me to sleep.

CHORUS [SAME MELODY]: I'm alone, all alone, in this cold world so wild.
God look down and pity a drunkard's lone child.
In pity look down and hasten to me
And take me to dwell with mother and thee.

She sleeps on a hill in a bed of cold clay.
How sad it did seem to lay mother away!
She is gone with the angels and none do I see.
So dear is the face of my mother to me. CHORUS

It is springtime on earth and the birds are so glad.
I listen and I wonder; my heart is so sad.
Sweet flowers around and strangers pass by,
But the form of my mother no longer is nigh. CHORUS

Last night in my dreams she seemed to draw near.
She kissed me as sweetly as when she was here.
She smiled on me too and fondled my brow,
And she whispered: "Sleep on; I'm a-watchin' you now." CHORUS


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: Drunkard's Lone Child
From: Artful Codger
Date: 27 Apr 09 - 07:53 AM

The John Hopkins Lester S. Levy Collection has sheet music for "Father's a Drunkard and Mother Is Dead", dated 1866. It is clearly related to the "Drunkard's Lone Child" songs, if not the original source. Words are credited to "Stella, of Washington", with music by Mrs. E.A. Parkhurst. I believe that the text and a MIDI can be found at pdmusic.org.


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: Drunkard's Lone Child
From: Artful Codger
Date: 27 Apr 09 - 07:56 AM

Levy might also have discussed this song in his book Grace Notes, though I don't have a copy handy to verify.


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