Mudcat Café message #4071694 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #168402   Message #4071694
Posted By: rich-joy
12-Sep-20 - 09:31 PM
Thread Name: Mudcat Australia/NZ Songbook
Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
THE DEATH OF BEN HALL

Come all Australian sons with me, for a hero has been slain
Cowardly butchered in his sleep, upon the Lachlan Plains.
He never robbed a needy man, as all the records show
Staunch and loyal to his mates, and manly to the foe.
No brand of Cain e’er stamped his brow, no widow’s curse did fall
When tales are read, the squatter’s dread, the name of bold Ben Hall.
When first he left his trusty mates, the cause I ne’er did hear
The bloodhounds of the law heard this, and after him did steer.
Then savagely, they murdered him, those cowardly bluecoat imps
Who were led on to where he lay, by informing peelers’ pimps.
No more he’ll mount his gallant steed, or range the hills so high
The widow’s friend in poverty, bold Ben Hall – goodbye.
Pray do not stay your seemly grief, but let the teardrops fall
For all Australia mourns today, the death of bold Ben Hall.


It’s a pity that the version poignantly sung (in my memory!) by TONY LAVIN (Wild Colonial Boys) does not appear to be online. It was on their 1971 “Glenrowan to the Gulf” LP.
WCB were Jacko Kevans, Bob McInnes, Jim Fingleton, Bill Morgan, Tony Lavin, and originally, Declan Affley.

They all had a bit part in Tony Richardson’s 1970 film “Ned Kelly” (yes, the Mick Jagger version) – did they even get credited??
IMHO, t’would have been better if they had featured in the soundtrack instead of the Yanks (i.e. Shel Silverstein comps with Waylon Jennings & Kris Kristofferson & Tom Ghent singing, FFS!!!!)
But yes, it’s all a long time ago now - and the remakes of Ned just keep on coming :)


Cheers, R-J