Mudcat Café message #1971953 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #98805   Message #1971953
Posted By: McGrath of Harlow
18-Feb-07 - 06:03 PM
Thread Name: Lyr Req: Newfoundland Mermaid song
I went out hunting with Google and found another version of this song on the Musical Traditions site on a page about a record of songs sung by a Suffolk man called Bob Hart - it has some verses pretty well the same, some you haven't got, but some you have got are missing.

Here it is, with a note about it from :

I often lie in bed and think
What an awful thing is work,
I know of some who started it
And gave up with a jerk.
There's Beery Bob, he got a job
To drive a motor car,
Said "Blow the p'lice, I'll let them see
I know what motors are."
So a hundred mile an hour he went
And he quite enjoyed the fun;
But a brewer's dray got in his way -
And his day's work was done.

I knew a man, he got a job
In a menagerie.
'Twas only to feed the animals,
As easy as could be.
He didn't know their appetites
It was the funny part,
So when the feeding time came round,
He had to make a start.
He went into the lion's den
And he offered it a bun;
The lion smiled and then got riled,
And his day's work was done.

A man was up a ladder,
Cleaning winders was his job;
But all the time was spooning
With young Missis Thingmabob.
Her husband came along just as
Their heads in kisses met;
He didn't rave or carry on
As though he was upset.
He simply pulled the ladder away
And said "This takes the bun."
The man at the top, he came down plop,
And his day's work was done.

Now Pat he went for a sailor
And he thought the job was soft,
No sooner had he started than
He was ordered up aloft.
He funked a bit, but up he went,
In fact, he had no choice,
Was hanging on the top-mast
When he heard the Captain's voice.
"Let go that rope" the Captain yells
To Pat, he means this one;
Let go came tumbling down below,
And his day's work was done.

This was written in 1903 by T W Connor (who also penned My Mother Doesn't Know I'm on the Stage) and sung on the halls by George Brooks. Apparently it's also known locally as Beery Bob and is in John Howson's Songs Sung in Suffolk pp.9-10; the singer was Manny Aldus of Great Bricett.

It sounds as if you've got some great songs there, Catherine!