Mudcat Café message #4069520 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #168402   Message #4069520
Posted By: Stewie
24-Aug-20 - 11:21 PM
Thread Name: Mudcat Australia/NZ Songbook
Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
(Alan Mann)

Have you travelled northwards past the slime dumps of Kalgoolie
Out upon the old Broad Arrow Road
Have you seen the heaps of mullock like the tombstones in a graveyard
That signify the finding of a lode
Have you ever stopped to wonder how many picks and shovels
And aching muscles on bodies young and old
Would have scraped the dust of legend, the clay and the ironstone
Searching for a dish of yellow gold

For the passing of some years seats you in a four-wheel-drive
The exhaust pipe leaves your sweat and your worries far behind
The air-conditioned faint north-easter blows cool air across your mind
Travelling on the dusty gravel road

Well ahead there's corrugations and you spot the blackened carcass
Of a tyre gone to pieces on the side
Christ, what happens if you break down - the petrol tank is holed
Or, worst of all, the grog supply runs dry
Like the heroes in that legend maybe you'll walk a while
Maybe you'll get lucky, hitch a ride
But would you push your barrow, loaded up with life's possessions
Like some of them damn near three hundred mile


At the turnoff there's some diggings and you stop to rest a while
As nightfall pulls the curtain on the day
By the last few glints of sunlight something on that yonder hillside
Beckons you to come and walk that way
Glittering in the gully, piles of champagne bottles
Signs they caught up with the golden fate
And you lift the flimsy flip-top from a frosty ice-cold can
And you join their celebration just eighty years too late


Alan Mann, a fine musician and songwriter, has been part of the West Australian folk scene for ever. 'Dusty gravel road' is the title track of an album by Loaded Dog. In respect of this song, Alan noted: 'The first prospectors had a great and intimate understanding of the goldfields country. It was not until 1986 that the output of gold in Western Australia exceeded that of the halcyon year of 1904'.

Unfortunately, the only clip of Loaded Dog on the Net is the one I posted re 'Waltzing Matilda'. Loaded Dog's website has disappeared. They have 4 excellent CDs. If any 'cattier is interested in obtaining their music, send me a personal message and I will put you in touch.