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Kellys, Byrne and Hart Query


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Bob Bolton 19 Nov 98 - 04:54 PM
Bob Bolton 19 Nov 98 - 07:43 PM
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Subject: Kellys, Byrne and Hart Query
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 19 Nov 98 - 04:54 PM

G'day All,

I thought I saw a thread yesterday asking for a song about the Kelly Gang (Austalian Bushrangers, d. 1880). The person could only remember the last line of the chorus:
"... Ned Kelly, Dan Kelly, Joe Byrne & Steve Hart"

I prepared a reply, after some research last night, and now I can't find the thread (OK ... I know I should have Traced it ...). Anyway, unless my memory comes through with the exact references, I will need to start a new thread and hope the original thread poster recognises the subject:

I had a look through the best single collection of Kelly Songs: Ned Kelly after a century of acrimony, by John Meredith and Bill Scott, Lansdowne Press, Dee Why West (NSW, Australia), 1980, and could not find any song with the chorus you remember. Both the authors are folklore collectors of long standing in Australia and John Meredith, in particular, has written extensively on Kelly over the past 40+ years.

Interestingly, I found two songs that end the final verse with lists of the gang members, but none quite in the form you give. These are:
'Farewell to Greta', which ends with
... One kiss before we part,
Now haste to join your comrades, Dan,
Joe Byrne and Stevey Hart.

'Ye Sons of Australia', which ends with
... For like many others you may feel the dart,
Which pierced the two Kellys, Joe Byrne and Steve Hart.

There is also a song called The Kellys, Byrne and Hart, but this does not have the listing of the gang members anywhere in the text!

An interesting point is that none of the contemporaneous Kelly songs (such as those in Six Authentic Songs from the Kelly Country, collected and edited by John Meredith, Bush Music Club, 1955, [3rd ed. 1971]) have choruses, being more in the ballad style. The chorus songs seem to be Music Hall style Kelly songs that were popular with city larrikins, who sang them as expressions of their hatred of authority.

I'm sorry I can't find your particular song. I shall be interested to see what other can find.

Bob Bolton

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Subject: RE: Kellys, Byrne and Hart Query
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 19 Nov 98 - 07:43 PM

G'day again,

I guess I won't have anyone picking up this thread - the query I could remember ... but not the source - It was on Australian Worldfolk discussion site, not Mudcat!

Ah, well ... they reckon there are three good things about Alzeimer's Disease:

1/ You can hide your own Easter eggs,

2/ You get to meet new and interesting people every day, and 3/ ... ... uh, you can hide your own Easter eggs!


Bob Bolton

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