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Lyr Req: The Irish Ballad (Tom Lehrer)

DigiTrad:
ALMA
BE PREPARED 2
BRIGHT COLLEGE DAYS
CHRISTMAS TIME
CLEMENTINE (2)
ELEPHANTS (The Force of Habit---ROUND)
FIGHT FIERCELY, HARVARD!
HUNTING SONG
I WANNA GO BACK TO DIXIE
I'LL HOLD YOUR HAND IN MINE
IN OLD MEXICO
LOBACHEVSKY
MASOCHISM TANGO
MY HOME TOWN
NEW MATH
OEDIPUS REX (2)
POISONING PIGEONS IN THE PARK
POLLUTION
PROUD TO BE A SOLDIER
SMUT
SO LONG, MOM
THE CHEMICAL ELEMENTS
THE FOLK SONG ARMY
THE FORMULARY SONG
THE IRISH BALLAD (RICKETY TICKETY TIN)
THE OLD DOPE PEDDLER
THE RED LINE SONG
THE WIENER SCHNITZEL WALTZ
THE WILD WEST IS WHERE I WANT TO BE
VATICAN RAG
WE WILL ALL GO TOGETHER WHEN WE GO
WERNHER VON BRAUN
WHEN YOU ARE OLD AND GREY


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GUEST,Azania 30 Mar 05 - 05:52 AM
GUEST,aiberdeen 30 Mar 05 - 06:16 AM
GUEST,MCP 30 Mar 05 - 06:23 AM
Celtaddict 30 Mar 05 - 08:45 PM
GUEST,Barrie Roberts 31 Mar 05 - 08:33 AM
GUEST,fretless 31 Mar 05 - 09:42 AM
GUEST,Joe_F 31 Mar 05 - 09:53 AM
GUEST,vickikel (guest) 02 Apr 05 - 11:45 PM
Liz the Squeak 03 Apr 05 - 01:29 AM
Mark Cohen 03 Apr 05 - 01:44 AM
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Subject: Lyr Req: Help in finding a song
From: GUEST,Azania
Date: 30 Mar 05 - 05:52 AM

I am a total novice so I dont even know if this is a site that can help.

Many years ago my father used to sing us a scary old song, supposedly about a real event where a girl murdered her family.

I only remember pieces of it and wonder if anyone has any idea of its origin and the full set of lyrics. (I now have a son of my own, and its time to sing this around campfires)

The bits I remember are:

"One day while in a fit of pique
rickety tickety tin
One day while in a fit of pique
She drowned her brother in the creek..."

Another bit

"and she danced around the funeral pyre
with her face in a terrible grin, grin
Yes her face in a terrible grin"

Not much help, but you either know it or not, I suppose


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Help in finding a song
From: GUEST,aiberdeen
Date: 30 Mar 05 - 06:16 AM

Written by Tom Lehrer - can't remember the title, but a search on his name should do it.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Help in finding a song
From: GUEST,MCP
Date: 30 Mar 05 - 06:23 AM

It in the DT: The Irish Ballad. This link will take you to the song and you can follow other links there for more information.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Help in finding a song
From: Celtaddict
Date: 30 Mar 05 - 08:45 PM

Welcome, novice Azania; see how fast that was? You might want to join us. And to keep your luck up in responses, a line or two, chorus, or some bit you know is a help in the thread title, for those of us who just scan through fast but will be caught by a familiar line.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Help in finding a song
From: GUEST,Barrie Roberts
Date: 31 Mar 05 - 08:33 AM

Definitely Tom Lehrer's 'Ballad of Maureen O'Blivion' which, he said, was an old Irish ballad that differed from all other old Irish ballads only because he wrote it.

About a maid I'll sing a song,
Rickety-tickety-tin,
About a maid I'll sing a song
Who did not keep her family long,
Not only did she do them wrong,
But she did every one of them in,
Them in, she did every one of them in.

One day when she had nothing to do
She sliced her baby brother in two
And served him up in an Irish stew
And invited the neighbours in.

she set her sister's hair on fire,
And as the smoke and flame rose higher,
Danced around the funeral pyre,
Playing her violin.

Her mother she could never stand,
And so a cyanide soup she planned.
Her mother died with the spoon in her hand
And her face in a hideous grin.

One morning in a fit of pique
She drowned her father in the creek.
The water tasted bad for a week,
And we had to make do with gin.

And when at last the Police came by
Her terrible tricks she would not deny.
To do so she would have had to lie ---
And lying she knew was a sin.

And so at last I end my song
(Line forgotten)
You've yourself to blame if its too long --
You should never have let me begin.

From memory, so probably not quite accurate. A double CD with it on has just been released in the Uk, so I'm sure it's easy to find.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Help finding 'the Irish Ballad'
From: GUEST,fretless
Date: 31 Mar 05 - 09:42 AM

Heres what the DT has for the last verse:

My tragic tale I won't prolong
Sing rickety tickety tin
My tragic tale I won't prolong
I hope you like my little song
You've yourself to blame if it's too long
You should never have let me begin, begin
You should never have let me begin.

That's not exactly how I remember it from Tom's records, but its close enough. Tom's brother Larry taught drama in my Sunday School. The sense of humor and mischief ran in the family.

As it apparently does in yours, too, Azania. What else was in your father's repertoire?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Help finding 'the Irish Ballad'
From: GUEST,Joe_F
Date: 31 Mar 05 - 09:53 AM

For "terrible tricks" read "little pranks". The last stanza begins

My tragic tale I'll not prolong,

And if you did not enjoy my song,...

I have never heard of Maureen O'Blivion, tho. On my LP (given me by my mother for my high-school graduation in 1954), the title is simply "The Irish Ballad". Prof. Lehrer professed on the jacket: "The folk song has in recent years become the particular form of permissible idiocy of the intellectual fringe. Here, for these elite, is an ancient Irish ballad; it is complete with modal tune, simple story line, and inane refrain, but it differs from other ancient ballads in that it was written in 1950."

That is the first Lehrer song I heard -- sung by a young lady in the back of my high school's truck, ca. 1953. It had already become a folk song!

--- Joe Fineman    joe_f@verizon.net

||: The British are three insular peoples who have spread their insularity over four continents. :||


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Irish Ballad (Tom Lehrer)
From: GUEST,vickikel (guest)
Date: 02 Apr 05 - 11:45 PM

Not to minimize the great things Digitrad is doing, the song is also available in "Rise Up Singing", put out by Sing Out magazine, and available in many music stores. It goes by "The Irish Ballad" there.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Irish Ballad (Tom Lehrer)
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 03 Apr 05 - 01:29 AM

It's known as 'The Irish Ballad' on all Lehrers' back catalogues too.

It's available in the book 'Too many songs (and not enough pictures) by Tom Lehrer and somebody Searle, illustrator.

LTS


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Irish Ballad (Tom Lehrer)
From: Mark Cohen
Date: 03 Apr 05 - 01:44 AM

That's Ronald Searle, who is very well known on this side of the water, at least.

When I was in college, I had a friend named Doug Quine, whose father, W.V. Quine, was a professor of mathematical philosophy at Harvard. Doug told me that Tom Lehrer was the only person who ever got an A in his father's graduate seminar and did not go directly into academics. Until very recently, Tom was still teaching half the year in Cambridge or somewhere else Bostonish, and the other half in California...though he may well have retired by now.

If you put "Tom Lehrer" in the search box at the top of the page, you will find "Too Many Threads About Tom Lehrer."

Aloha,
Mark


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