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Lyr Add: No Beer, No Work (anti-Prohibition song)

In Mudcat MIDIs:
No Beer, No Work [Sammy Edwards, 1919]


Jim Dixon 22 Feb 05 - 11:21 PM
Joe Offer 23 Feb 05 - 04:19 AM
Charley Noble 23 Feb 05 - 09:01 AM
Snuffy 23 Feb 05 - 09:11 AM
Jim Dixon 23 Feb 05 - 09:54 AM
GUEST 23 Feb 05 - 10:09 AM
GUEST,Jim Dixon 23 Feb 05 - 10:27 AM
GUEST,hfenton@rcn.com 25 Aug 05 - 02:38 PM
GUEST,Phil 04 Jul 06 - 11:21 PM
GUEST,Johnny 04 Nov 09 - 04:17 AM
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Subject: Lyr Add: No Beer, No Work (anti-Prohibition song)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 22 Feb 05 - 11:21 PM

I ran across this while searching for something else. From The Lester S. Levy Collection of Sheet Music:

NO BEER, NO WORK
Sammy Edwards, 1919

1. Johnny Hymer was a miner, always on the job.
Johnny loved his lager like a sailor loves his grog.
One day, his foreman told him that this country would go dry.
John threw his tools upon the ground. You should have heard him cry:

CHORUS: "No beer, no work" will be my battle cry.
"No beer, no work" when I am feeling dry.
I never could like lemonade or bevo*, for beer is all I'll buy.
I'll hide my self away
Until some brighter day
When I can sip the lager from a stein.
"No beer, no work" will be my battle cry
After the first of July.

2. Johnny's steady, ever ready to give good advice,
Said, "Go back to work or there'll be no old shoes or rice.
Be like Kipling's hero. Bear your troubles with a grin."
John said, "I'll be your hero, but I'll be no Gunga Din."**

3. "When I was a baby," said our Johnny with a smile,
"They raised me on a bottle. Now they want to change the style.
John Barleycorn's a friend of mine. My daddy knew him well.
He'd bring John home with him at night and ma would give him –––.

---

*Bevo was a brand of non-alcoholic "near beer" that was made by Anheuser-Busch before and during prohibition. If "bevo" was ever used as a generic term for near beer, I wasn't aware of it, but that's what the song seems to imply. "Bevo" is NOT capitalized in the printed lyrics.

**Something seems garbled in this verse, since Johnny's foreman seems to be speaking, although it doesn't say so. Also, the reference to "old shoes or rice" seems odd. It suggests that Johnny was planning to get married, but if so, I think the lyrics should say so more plainly.

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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: No Beer, No Work (anti-Prohibition song)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 23 Feb 05 - 04:19 AM

I think that one deserves a MIDI.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: No Beer, No Work (anti-Prohibition so
From: Charley Noble
Date: 23 Feb 05 - 09:01 AM

Well, never ran across that one before. Thanks!

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: No Beer, No Work (anti-Prohibition song)
From: Snuffy
Date: 23 Feb 05 - 09:11 AM

Isn't it his "steady" (girl) speaking in verse 2? He says " No beer, no work", and she replies "No work, no wedding"


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: No Beer, No Work (anti-Prohibition song)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 23 Feb 05 - 09:54 AM

Snuffy: You're right! I took "Johnny's steady" to mean "Johnny is steady" which completely threw me off.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: No Beer, No Work (anti-Prohibition so
From: GUEST
Date: 23 Feb 05 - 10:09 AM

"Johnny's steady" is not "Johnny is steady" but "the steady girlfriend of Johnny."

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: No Beer, No Work (anti-Prohibition song)
From: GUEST,Jim Dixon
Date: 23 Feb 05 - 10:27 AM

That also means there should be a comma, not a period, after "advice." (I often try to rationalize the punctuation in song lyrics, which are often written as long run-on sentences separated by commas, if anything. This time I rationalized wrongly.)

(Am I the only person who considers punctuation significant?)
    I like punctuation, too. Comma inserted,as shown in the sheet music.
    -Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: No Beer, No Work (anti-Prohibition song)
From: GUEST,hfenton@rcn.com
Date: 25 Aug 05 - 02:38 PM

This is interesting - I found a (lapel) pin that says "NO BEER
NO WORK JULY 1" in a group of pins relating to WWI and shortly
after. This helps explain the pin.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: No Beer, No Work (anti-Prohibition song)
From: GUEST,Phil
Date: 04 Jul 06 - 11:21 PM

Thanks for this discussion. We were cleaning belongings out of an old house that belonged to a coal miner and found a lapel pin that said "No Beer No Work". I liked the phrase and have continued to wear the pin, but considering we found it on July 2 and the above thread, it has more meaning now. Thanks.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: No Beer, No Work (anti-Prohibition song)
From: GUEST,Johnny
Date: 04 Nov 09 - 04:17 AM

I like this song good work


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