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Lyr Add: While I Was Licking My Stamp (Champion)

30 Jan 11 - 01:58 PM (#3085352)
Subject: Lyr Add: WHILE I WAS LICKING MY STAMP (Champion)
From: Jim Dixon

I thought I'd try posting as many music-hall songs as I can find, if they haven't already been posted.

You can hear this recording at YouTube.

My transcription has a few gaps and uncertainties. Please help fix them.


WHILE I WAS LICKING MY STAMP
Words, Willie Wye. Music, Harry Champion. © 1913.
As sung by Harry Champion

1. I went looking for work one day. Wherever I chanced to look,
The first thing that they ask├ęd for was my insurance book.
I was sent to clean the windows. The lady said to me,
"Before you start upon the job, your book I'll have to see."
I started sticking me stamp on. When I put out my tongue,
The lady thought I wanted a kiss, so up the stairs she run.
Her husband came with a knob on a stick. He said I was a champ(?).
He landed me one on my dub-a-dub-dum while I was licking my stamp.

2. One day feeling a bit run down, a doctor I went to see.
He looked at my insurance book before he looked at me.
He popped some medicine down me throat; he thought I was a tramp.
He says, "The medicine makes you work; now don't forget your stamp."
I started sticking me stamp on as up the street I ran.
As I was running along the street, a ... (?) saw me tongue.
He tossed me into a china shop. I thought I'd got the cramp,
For there I sat on a china cat while I was licking me stamp.

3. Every Monday a brand-new stamp inside my book I stick.
I always have to have a drink before me tongue will lick.
Last week I had to buy some scotch. Inside a tram I got.
Before me tongue got properly moist, I had to drink the lot.
I started sticking me stamp on as I sat in the tram.
One old girl with a wooden leg said, "Aye, come here, young man.
Who are you making faces at?" then sloshed me with her gamp(?).
There was I with her leg in me eye while I was licking me stamp.

4. Monday mornings I take for lunch a bit of cold meat with me.
By morning it was thick with mould when I woke up, you see.
I wrapped my lid in me handkerchief just like a silly Turk.
I put the pants on inside out, then off I rushed to work.
I started sticking me stamp on as I rushed in the fog.
By accident I went into a house that kept a dog.
He gave me a bite. I shouted with fright, "Will somebody bring a lamp?
Perhaps me lunch it was havin' a munch while I was lickin' me stamp."


[Can anyone explain how these stamp-books worked? I assume this was before the National Health Service, and it was some form of health insurance. Was it government-sponsored or subsidized, or purely private?]


30 Jan 11 - 06:56 PM (#3085544)
Subject: RE: Lyr Add: While I Was Licking My Stamp (Champion)
From: Dead Horse

Her husband came with a knob on a stick. He said I was a SCAMP

As I was running along the street, a MAD BULL saw me tongue.

Gamp is right. Its a name for an umbrella.
No idea about the stamps. I aint that old :-)


30 Jan 11 - 07:56 PM (#3085584)
Subject: RE: Lyr Add: While I Was Licking My Stamp (Champion)
From: Charley Noble

Intriguing.

Charley Noble


14 Mar 11 - 10:44 PM (#3113889)
Subject: RE: Lyr Add: While I Was Licking My Stamp (Champion)
From: freebornman

Thanks for these lyrics I've been trying to hunt them down..
As for the stamps it's just an old fashioned term for the money you pay in national insurance contributions. When it was first introduced in 1911, people would go to the post office and literally buy a stamp by way of paying their contributions, they would then show those 'stamps' as proof when claiming any benefits.


06 Oct 12 - 08:22 PM (#3415672)
Subject: RE: Lyr Add: While I Was Licking My Stamp (Champion)
From: GUEST,joolz

Also, the last verse seems to be like this:

4. Monday mornings I take for lunch a bit of cold meat with me.
One morning it was black with fog when I went out, you see.
I wrapped my meat in me handkerchief just like a silly Turk.
I put my pants on inside out, so off I rushed to work.
I started sticking me stamp on as I rushed through the fog.
By accident I rushed into a house that kept a dog.
He gave me a bite. I shouted with fright, "Will somebody bring a lamp?
Perhaps me lunch it was havin' a munch while I was lickin' me stamp."

j


06 Oct 12 - 10:32 PM (#3415720)
Subject: RE: Lyr Add: While I Was Licking My Stamp (Champion)
From: Sandra in Sydney

a wonderfully silly song!


24 Mar 19 - 05:50 AM (#3984262)
Subject: RE: Lyr Add: While I Was Licking My Stamp (Champion)
From: GUEST

I think, although at the time gamp was slang for an umbrella, from the context it actually refers to the old lady's wooden leg. How else could he end up with 'her leg in me eye'?


24 Mar 19 - 07:30 AM (#3984296)
Subject: RE: Lyr Add: While I Was Licking My Stamp (Champion)
From: Long Firm Freddie

From Collins Online English Dictionary:

Word origin of 'gamp'
C19: after Mrs Sarah Gamp, a nurse in Dickens' Martin Chuzzlewit, who carried a faded cotton umbrella.

Her husband had a wooden leg but whether that that prompted the lyric about her leg being in Harry's eye I couldn't say!

LFF


12 Jul 19 - 01:47 PM (#4000502)
Subject: RE: Lyr Add: While I Was Licking My Stamp (Champion)
From: GUEST,Norman Clubb

Verse 4 last line: For at me lunch he was havin' a munch..." That's how it sounds on the CD.
Hope this helps
Regards
Norman