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Lyr Add: Billy Barlow in Australia

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BILLY BARLOW


Related threads:
Folklore: Study of the Billy Barlow Phenomenon (21)
Lyr Add: Billy Barlow 3 (Civil war) (30)
(origins) Origins: Billy Barlow (24)
Lyr Add: Billy Barlow (England) (9)


Q (Frank Staplin) 17 Sep 03 - 09:26 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 17 Sep 03 - 09:28 PM
Joe Offer 18 Sep 03 - 01:13 AM
Bob Bolton 18 Sep 03 - 01:32 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 18 Sep 03 - 02:22 PM
Joybell 18 Sep 03 - 05:24 PM
Bob Bolton 18 Sep 03 - 08:27 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 18 Sep 03 - 10:16 PM
Bob Bolton 18 Sep 03 - 10:57 PM
Joybell 18 Sep 03 - 11:01 PM
Bob Bolton 19 Sep 03 - 12:37 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 19 Sep 03 - 05:28 PM
Bob Bolton 19 Sep 03 - 08:27 PM
GUEST,andy aliffe 09 Jan 09 - 05:33 AM
Joybell 09 Jan 09 - 09:23 PM
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Subject: Lyr Add: BILLY BARLOW IN AUSTRALIA
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 17 Sep 03 - 09:26 PM

Lyr. Add: Billy Barlow in Australia
ed. A. D. "Banjo" Paterson

When I was at home I was down on my luck,
And I earned a poor living by drawing a truck;
But old aunt died, and left me a thousand-- "Oh, oh,
I'll start on my travels," said Billy Barlow.
Oh, dear, lackaday, oh,
So off to Australia came Billy Barlow.

When to Sidney I got, there a merchant I met,
Who said he would teach me a fortune to get;
He'd cattle and sheep past the colony's bounds,
Which he sold with the station for my thousand pounds.
Oh, dear, lackaday, oh,
He gammon'd the cash out of Billy Barlow.

When the bargain was struck, and the money was paid,
He said, "My dear fellow, your fortune is made;
I can furnish supplies for the station, you know,
And your bill is sufficient, good fellow Barlow."
Oh, dear, lackaday, oh,
A gentleman settler was Billy Barlow.

So I got my supplies, and I gave him my bill,
And for New England started, my pockets to fill;
But by bushrangers met, with my traps they made free,
Took my horse, and left Billy bailed up to a tree.
Oh, dear, lackaday, oh,
"I shall die of starvation," thought Billy Barlow.

At last I got loose, and I walked on my way;
A constable came up, and to me did say,
"Are you free"? Says I, "Yes, to be sure; don't you know?"
And I handed my card, "Mr. William Barlow."
Oh, dear, lackaday, oh,
He said "That's all gammon," to Billy Barlow.

Then he put on the handcuffs, and brought me away
Right back down to Maitland, before Mr. Day.
When I said I was free, why the J. P. replied,
"I must send you down to be i--dentified."
Oh, dear, lackaday, oh,
So to Sidney once more went poor Billy Barlow.

They at last let me go, and I then did repair
For my station once more, and at length I got there;
But a few days before, the blacks, you must know,
Had spear'd all the cattle of Billy Barlow.
Oh, dear, lackaday, oh,
"It's a beautiful country," said Billy Barlow.

And for nine months before no rain there had been,
So the devil a blade of grass could be seen;
And one-third of my wethers the scab they had got,
And the other two-thirds had just died of the rot.
Oh, dear, lackaday, oh,
"I shall soon be a settler," said Billy Barlow.

And the matter to mend, now my bill was near due,
So I wrote to my friend, and just asked to renew;
He replied he was sorry he couldn't, because
The bill had passed into a usurer's claws.
Oh, dear, lackaday, Oh,
"But perhaps he'll renew it," said Billy Barlow."

For a month or six weeks I stewed over my loss,
And a tall man rode up one day on a black horse;
He asked, "Don't you know me?" I answered him "No."
"Why," said he, "my names Kinsmill; how are you, Barlow?"
Oh, dear, lackaday, oh,
He'd got a fi. fa. for poor Billy Barlow.

What I'd left of my sheep and my traps he did seize,
And he said, "They won't pay all the costs and my fees,"
Then he sold off the lot, and I'm sure 'twas a sin,
At sixpence a head, and the station given in.
Oh, dear, lackaday, oh,
"I'll go back to England," said Billy Barlow.

My sheep being sold, and my money all gone,
Oh, I wandered about then quite sad and forlorn;
How I managed to live it would shock you to know,
And as thin as a lath got poor Billy Barlow.
Oh, dear, lackaday, oh,
Quite down on his luck was poor Billy Barlow.

And in a few weeks more the sheriff, you see,
Sent the tall man on horseback once more unto me;
Having got all he could by the writ of fi. fa.,
By way of a change he'd brought up a ca. sa.
Oh, dear, lackaday, oh,
He seized on the body of Billy Barlow.

He took me to Sidney, and there they did lock
Poor unfortunate Billy fast "under the clock;"
And to get myself out I was forced, you must know
The schedule to file of poor Billy Barlow.
Oh, dear, lackaday, oh,
In the list of insolvents was Billy Barlow.

Then once more I got free, but in poverty's toil;
I've no "cattle for salting," no "sheep for to boil,"
I can't get a job-- though to any I'd stoop,
If it was only the making of portable soup.
Oh, dear, lackaday, oh.
Pray give some employment to Billy Barlow.

From "Old Bush Songs," ed. A. B. "Banjo" Paterson, 1905. On line, In Australia


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: BILLY BARLOW IN AUSTRALIA
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 17 Sep 03 - 09:28 PM

Bob Bolton or someone- what is fi. fa. and ca. sa.?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: BILLY BARLOW IN AUSTRALIA
From: Joe Offer
Date: 18 Sep 03 - 01:13 AM

This seems to follow the same meter and structure as what we've identified as Billy Barlow 3, so I would supposes the tune would be the same.
Right?
-Joe Offer-

Click to play


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: BILLY BARLOW IN AUSTRALIA
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 18 Sep 03 - 01:32 AM

G'day,

Joe: That tune doesn't ring any bells with me. I'll dig out a tune (must have it somewhere ...) and post a MIDItext file.

Q: Fi. fa. Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase & Fable:

"A contraction of the Latin words fi'eri facias (cause it to be done). A judicial writ for one who has recovered damages in the Queen's courts, being a command to the sheriff to see the judgement of the court duly carried out."

On your ascription of the piece to: 'ed. A. D. "Banjo" Paterson', I might have grizzled about him including arcane bits of solicitor's slang that was old-fashioned by his day ... but the song you quote was printed in the Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser on 2 September 1843 ... rather early for old Banjo. It had been performed by an amateur company for the Maitland Benevolent Society at the Northumberland Hotel, the Monday evening before.

I can't find anything on ca. sa. ... I might ask Bernard Bolan if his legal side can remember that one ... or (perhaps better) refer to my co-editor on the Mulga Wire that I should be editing, Colin Fong - once described by the ABC's legal roundsman as " ... that doyen of Sydney law librarians ..."!

Regards,

bob Bolton


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: BILLY BARLOW IN AUSTRALIA
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 18 Sep 03 - 02:22 PM

Thanks, Bob. The collection of bush songs in Paterson's book has some odd selections (or so they seem to a 'foreigner'), but in some ways that makes the book even more interesting, and a good companion to Meredith and Anderson.
Would it be possible to dig up the article on the performance in 1843? Might name names.
A shortened version is in the National Library of Australia website, called "Billy Barlow's Emigration to Australia." Date bet. 1850-1859, sung by Toole. The usurer is named as Tom Latitat and there are other slight differences, but the two versions definitely originated from the same pen.

I have a lawyer son but I haven't had a chance to ask him about the terms. Thanks for Fi. fa.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: BILLY BARLOW IN AUSTRALIA
From: Joybell
Date: 18 Sep 03 - 05:24 PM

It does name names but you'll need BOTH references that I gave you.


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Subject: Lyr Add: BILLY BARLOW (Benjamin Griffin)
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 18 Sep 03 - 08:27 PM

G'day Q,

Here is the full text (17 stanzas, instead of Paterson's 15 ...!) and the notes given by Douglas Stewart & Nancy Keesing in Old Bush Songs, Angus & Roberston, Sydney (~ 1957?).

BILLY BARLOW

Benjamin Griffin (?)

When I was at home I was down on my luck,
And I yearnt a poor living by drawing a truck;
But old aunt died and left me a thousand– "Oh, oh,
I'll start on my travels," said Billy Barlow.
        Oh dear, lackaday, oh;
        So off to Australia came Billy Barlow.

When to Sydney I got, there a merchant I met,
Who said he could teach me a fortune to get;
He'd cattle and sheep past the colony's bounds,
Which he sold with the station for my thousand pounds.
        Oh dear, lackaday, oh;
        He gammoned the cash out of Billy Barlow.

When the bargain was struck, and the money was paid,
He said, "My dear fellow, your fortune is made;
I can furnish supplies for the station, you know,
And your bill is sufficient, good Mr Barlow."
        Oh dear, lackaday, oh;
        A gentleman settler was Billy Barlow.

So I got my supplies and I gave him my bill,
And for New England started, my pockets to fill;
But by bushrangers met, with my traps they made free,
Took my horse, and left Billy bailed up to a tree.
        Oh dear, lackaday, oh;
        I shall die of starvation, thought Billy Barlow.

At last I got loose, and I walked on my way;
A constable came up, and to me did say,
"Are you free?" Says I, "Yes, to be sure, don't you know?"
And I handed my card-"Mr William Barlow."
        Oh dear, lackaday, oh;
        He said, "That's all gammon" to Billy Barlow.

Then he put on the handcuffs, and brought me away
Right back down to Maitland, before Mr Day;
When I said I was free, why the J.P. replied,
        "I must send you down to be i-dentified."
        Oh dear, lackaday, oh;
So to Sydney once more went poor Billy Barlow

They at last let me go, and I then did repair
For my station once more, and at length I got there;
But a few days before, the blacks, you must know,
Had speared all the cattle of Billy Barlow.
        Oh dear, lackaday, oh;
        "It's a beautiful country," said Billy Barlow.

And for nine months before, no rain there had been,
So the devil a blade of grass could be seen;
And one-third of my wethers the scab they had got,
And the other two-thirds had just died of the rot.
        Oh dear, lackaday, oh;
        'I shall soon be a settler," said Billy Barlow.

And the matter to mend, now my bill was near due,
So I wrote to my friend, and just asked to renew;
He replied he was sorry he couldn't, because
The bill had passed into Tom Burdekin's claws.
Oh dear, lackaday, oh;
"But perhaps he'll renew it," said Billy Barlow.

I applied; to renew it he was quite content,
If secured, and allowed just 300 per cent;
But as I couldn't do it, Carr, Rodgers & Co.
Soon sent up a summons for Billy Barlow.
        Oh dear, lackaday, oh;
        They soon settled the business of Billy Barlow.

For a month or six weeks I stewed over my loss,
And a tall man rode up one day on a black horse;
He asked, "Don't you know me?" I answered him "No."
"Why," says he, "my name's Kingsmill. How are you Barlow?"
        Oh dear, lackaday, oh;
        He'd got a "fi. fa." for poor Billy Barlow.

What I'd left of my sheep and my traps he did seize,
And he said, "They won't pay all the costs and my fees"; .
Then he sold off the lot, and I'm sure 'twas a sin,
At sixpence a head and the station thrown in.
        Oh dear, lackaday, oh;
        "I'll go back to England," said Billy Barlow.

My sheep being sold, and my money all gone,
Oh! I wandered about then quite sad and forlorn,
How I managed to live, it would shock you to know,
And as thin as a lath got poor Billy Barlow.
        Oh dear, lackaday, oh;
        Quite down on his luck was poor Billy Barlow.

And in a few weeks more the sheriff, you see,
Sent the "tall man on horseback" once more unto me,
Having got all he could by a writ of fi. fa.,
By way of a change he'd brought up a ca. sa.,
        Oh dear, lackaday, oh;
        He seized on the body of Billy Barlow.

He took me to Sydney, and there they did lock,
Poor unfortunate Billy fast 'under the clock";
And to get myself out I was forced, you must know,
The schedule to file of poor Billy Barlow. f
        Oh dear, lackaday, oh;
        In the list of insolvents was Billy Barlow.

Then once more I got free, but in poverty's toil;
I've no "cattle for salting", no "sheep for to boil";
I can't get a job-though to any I'd stoop,
If 'twas only the making of "portable soup".
        Oh dear, lackaday, oh;
        Pray give some employment to Billy Barlow.

But there's still a "spec" left may set me on my stumps,
If a wife I could get with a few of the dumps;
So if any lass here has "ten thousand" or so,
She can just drop a line addressed "Mr Barlow".
        Oh dear, lackaday, oh;
        The dear angel shall be "Mrs William Barlow".

Collected by Russel Ward from the Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser of 2nd September 1843, where there is the explanation: 'The first performance of the amateur company for the benefit of the Maitland Benevolent Society took place at the Northumberland Hotel on Monday evening last… Several songs were sung, and the following, which was written expressly for the occasion by a gentleman in Maitland, was received with unbounded applause." Other versions exist but this appears to be the original Australian version. According to an undated and unidentifiable newspaper cutting in the Sir Joseph Abbott papers the "gentleman in Maitland" who wrote the words was Benjamin Griffin.

"Portable soup"-soup boiled until it practically solidified; when in the form of "cakes" it was stored in tin canisters for reliquefying when occasion required.

The Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser would have been a fairly local (probably weekly) paper up in the Hunter Valley (inland from Newcastle). There are obviously, since Russel Ward located them, copies in a major library ... almost certainly the The Mitchell Library, the important founding collection of Australiasian and Pacific materials at the State Library of New South Wales. The synopsis of the newspaper article, given in the notes, does give a fair idea of the background ... and the extra cutting (from one of the Mitchell Collections) gives the probable authorship.

Regards,

Bob Bolton


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: BILLY BARLOW IN AUSTRALIA
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 18 Sep 03 - 10:16 PM

Thanks especially for the last verse which helps an unsatisfactory ending, and the data from the papers. This suggests that the song as you give it mostly had little to with a professional performer, and that perhaps only the basic Billy Barlow idea for the piece came from the stage.

I remember something like 'portable soup' from hiking in the southern Rockies many years ago. I don't remember what it was called. We had canned cheese as well, and as the soup was diluting over a fire, we would add some of the cheese to improve (disguise) the flavor.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: BILLY BARLOW IN AUSTRALIA
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 18 Sep 03 - 10:57 PM

G'day Q,

"Portable soup" sounds suspiciously like something still disguised as Army rations in the late 1950s! (Although the description is basically the earliest form of condensed soup ... ?)

Anyway, if I can decipher my own scrawled notes (from Colin Fong's 'phone call) Ca. Sa. is the abbreviated form of capias ad satisfaciendum - meaning "you may seize and take hold of for the purpose of making satisfaction" ... a writ for the arrest of the defendant, in civil law, when judgement has been recovered for a sum of money, but not satisfied.

BTW: You seem to be having a problem with the diametrically opped taxonomic views of "Splitters" and "Lumpers" ... with yourself of the former persuasion.

Regards,

Bob Bolton


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: BILLY BARLOW IN AUSTRALIA
From: Joybell
Date: 18 Sep 03 - 11:01 PM

George Coppin was performing as Billy Barlow (among other characters) in Sydney when Griffin wrote "Billy Barlow in Australia" for the Maitland performance between plays. The fact that Griffin wrote the song can be verified by reading George Coppin's letter to his wife written during his American tour sometime later. Coppin said he met Ben Griffin, along with several other Australians. He reffered to him as Ben Griffin who wrote Billy Barlow in Australia. I can give the exact quote if you wish. By 1843 Billy Barlow, played by many different actors, had been on the stage in The British Isles and in America and also on the streets in London as a street-performer for some time. Jack Reeve performed as Billy on tour in America before 1836. Reeve was a London comic actor.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: BILLY BARLOW IN AUSTRALIA
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 19 Sep 03 - 12:37 AM

G'day Joybell,

Thanks for the cross-reference on Benjamin Griffin's authorship of this Australian version. Studied together, the different Billy Barlows provide an interesting comparison of the various mores of (mainly) England, America and Australia. Of course, there is also much to be learnt from comparing the body of songs such as the Australian Billy Barlow with all the other roughly contemporary "Australian Immigrant/Settler" songs such as the one we now call The Pommy's Lament (although it is set - and was composed - before the appearance of the term "Pommy" for British immigrants to Australia.

These songs usually describe multiple disasters attendant upon unwise investment in a new and uncharted country. It is interesting that they seem to inform later songs about the perils of working for the tough, miserly, old farmers who did survive the perils of the early settlement days!

Incidentally, I did suggest that both the terms Fi. Fa. and Ca. Sa. where pretty old legal slang. As it was, I was able to find Fi. Fa. in a late 19th century source, but Ca. Sa. took more specialised work (Colin Fong is author of some texts on legal citations). I suspect that Ca. Sa. had gone out of use by the latere 19th century, along with the highly unproductive "Debtors' Prisons" that such writs peopled.

Regards,

Bob Bolton


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: BILLY BARLOW IN AUSTRALIA
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 19 Sep 03 - 05:28 PM

Found that capias ad respondendum and capias ad satisfaciendum were used in action in the state of New Jersey in 1971, and that a comission reviewing New Jersey law in 1997 recommended that these statutes be repealed. Although long term imprisonment had been stopped in 1844, the legal use of the statutes continued. Capias ad res... compels defendants personal availability. If judgement was against the defendant, under capias ad satisfaciendum the defendant can be arrested and held until he pays, or his personal insolvancy is established.
Don't know if the statutes were repealed in New Jersey, or what the status is elsewhere-

So watch out-- somewhere, sometime, they may still get you!!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: BILLY BARLOW IN AUSTRALIA
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 19 Sep 03 - 08:27 PM

G'day Q,

Yes - once I had the full Latin phrases (it's a long time since I studied Latin!) I was able to do a full web serach ... and found out these writs are, indeed, alive and well in the USA. This does not surprise me, as it is a commonplace that words, phrases and customs often survive in an ex-colonial country long after they have vanished in the old 'home country'- if they were popular at the time of 'decolonisation'.

My sample references in Australian legislation, from 1901 - the year of Australian Federation, suggest that our first homegrown statute laws (to replace English Common Law) shook them out of most legal pockets ... but kept them in the back of the statute book - just in case. Obviously, they were widely used in Griffin's day (c. 1843) ... and still familiar to Paterson, who started practice as a solicitor in the 1890s, when he edited the first edition of Old Bush Songs in 1905.

Regards,

Bob Bolton


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: BILLY BARLOW IN AUSTRALIA
From: GUEST,andy aliffe
Date: 09 Jan 09 - 05:33 AM

Hi Joy - Hope thsi email reaches you - I have just picked up on your thread on Billy Barlow - I am researching Victorian Rock Bands and note in my study that Billy Barlow played the Rock harmonicon - Do you infroamtion on thsi part of his act or any poster showing that he is performing on it? - I'll send anything that might relate to your research
Kind regards
ANDY ALIFFE
UK
andyaliffe@yahoo.co.uk


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Billy Barlow in Australia
From: Joybell
Date: 09 Jan 09 - 09:23 PM

Hello Andy -- I'll send you an email. There is a link at the head of this thread for my book about the Billy Barlow phenomenon -- but I'll send the relevant bits to you by email. Great to find someone interested in stone instruments. I haven't got much, sadly.
Regards, Joy


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