View Full Version : Some of my favourite Pub Songs ....

Wednesday, April 14th, 2004, 10:20 PM
These are the lyrics to some of the songs you will hear most nights in Canadian pubs ... as you will see ... our music is mostly Irish due to the large Irish and Scottish population in Canada... In the east anyway.


In a neat little town they call Belfast
Apprenticed in trade I was bound
And many an hour of sweet happiness
I spent in that neat little town
Till bad misfortune befell me
And caused me to stray from the land
Far away from my friends and relations
To follow the black velvet band

Her eyes they shone like the diamond
You'd think she was queen of the land
And her hair hung over her shoulder
Tied up in a black velvet band

Well, I was out strolling one evening
Not meaning to go very far
When I met with a pretty young damsel
She was selling her trade in a bar
When i watched, she took from a customer
And slipped it right into my hand
Then the Watch came and put me in prison
Bad luck to the black velvet band

Next morning before judge and jury
For our trial I had to appear
The judge, he said, "Young fellow
The case against you is quite clear
And seven years is your sentence
You're going to Van Dieman's Land
Far away from your friends and relations
To follow the black velvet band"

So come all you jolly young fellows
I'd have you take warning by me
And whenever you're out on the liquor
Beware of the pretty colleen
They'll fill your with whiskey and porter
Until You're not able to stand
And the very next thing that you know
You're landed in Van Dieman's Land

Wednesday, April 14th, 2004, 10:26 PM
The Wild Rover

I've been a wild rover for many's the year
I've spent all me money on whiskey and beer
But now I'm returning with gold in great store
And I never will play the wild rover no more

And it's No, Nay, never,
No, nay never no more
Will I play the wild rover,
No never no more

I went in to an alehouse I used to frequent
And I told the landlady me money was spent
I asked her for credit, she answered me nay
Such a customer as you I can have any day

And it's No, Nay, never,
No, nay never no more
Will I play the wild rover,
No never no more

I took up from my pocket, ten sovereigns bright
And the landlady's eyes opened wide with delight
She says "I have whiskeys and wines of the best
And the words that you told me were only in jest"

And it's No, Nay, never,
No, nay never no more
Will I play the wild rover,
No never no more

I'll go home to my parents, confess what I've done
And I'll ask them to pardon their prodigal son
And, when they've caressed me as oft times before
I never will play the wild rover no more

And it's No, Nay, never,
No, nay never no more
Will I play the wild rover,
No never no more

I don't know if this is normal... but when bands play this song live at pubs we generally shout 'Rise up yer kilt' after each 'And its No, Nay, never' in the chorus...and I have never seen that done anywhere but in the pubs back home...

Wednesday, April 14th, 2004, 10:27 PM
The Pogues:" Rivers of whisky "

Wednesday, April 14th, 2004, 10:29 PM

by Stan Rogers

Oh, the year was 1778, HOW I WISH I WAS IN SHERBROOKE NOW!
A letter of marque come from the king,
To the scummiest vessel I'd ever seen,

God damn them all!
I was told we'd cruise the seas for American gold
We'd fire no guns-shed no tears
Now I'm a broken man on a Halifax pier
The last of Barrett's Privateers.

Oh, Elcid Barrett cried the town, HOW I WISH I WAS SHERBROOKE NOW!
For twenty brave men all fishermen who
would make for him the Antelope's crew


The Antelope sloop was a sickening sight,
She'd a list to the port and and her sails in rags
And the cook in scuppers with the staggers and the jags


On the King's birthday we put to sea,
We were 91 days to Montego Bay
Pumping like madmen all the way


On the 96th day we sailed again,
When a bloody great Yankee hove in sight
With our cracked four pounders we made to fight


The Yankee lay low down with gold,
She was broad and fat and loose in the stays
But to catch her took the Antelope two whole days


Then at length we stood two cables away,
Our cracked four pounders made an awful din
But with one fat ball the Yank stove us in


The Antelope shook and pitched on her side,
Barrett was smashed like a bowl of eggs
And the Maintruck carried off both me legs


So here I lay in my 23rd year,
It's been 6 years since we sailed away
And I just made Halifax yesterday


Wednesday, April 14th, 2004, 10:32 PM
Finnegan's Wake

Tim Finnegan lived in Walkin Street,
A gentle Irishman mighty odd
He had a brogue both rich and sweet,
An' to rise in the world he carried a hod
You see he'd a sort of a tipplers way
but for the love for the liquor poor Tim was born
To help him on his way each day,
he'd a drop of the craythur every morn

Whack fol the dah now dance to yer partner
round the flure yer trotters shake
Bend an ear to the truth they tell ye,
we had lots of fun at Finnegan's Wake

One morning Tim got rather full,
his head felt heavy which made him shake
Fell from a ladder and he broke his skull, and
they carried him home his corpse to wake
Rolled him up in a nice clean sheet,
and laid him out upon the bed
A bottle of whiskey at his feet
and a barrel of porter at his head

His friends assembled at the wake,
and Widow Finnegan called for lunch
First she brought in tay and cake,
then pipes, tobacco and whiskey punch
Biddy O'Brien began to cry,
"Such a nice clean corpse, did you ever see,
Tim, auvreem! O, why did you die?",
"Will ye hould your gob?" said Paddy McGee

Then Maggie O'Connor took up the cry,
"O Biddy" says she "you're wrong, I'm sure"
Biddy gave her a belt in the gob
and sent her sprawling on the floor
Then the war did soon engage,
t'was woman to woman and man to man
Shillelagh law was all the rage
and a row and a ruction soon began

Mickey Maloney ducked his head
when a bucket of whiskey flew at him
It missed, and falling on the bed,
the liquor scattered over Tim
Now the spirits new life gave the corpse, my joy!
Tim jumped like a Trojan from the bed
Cryin will ye walup each girl and boy,
t'underin' Jaysus, do ye think I'm dead?"

Wednesday, April 14th, 2004, 10:34 PM
I'se The B'y <-- This is an uber newfie song

I'se The B'y that builds the boat and
I'se The B'y that sails her and
I'se The B'y that catches the fish and
Brings 'em home to Liza

Hip-yer-partner Sally Tibbo
Hip-yer-partner Sally Brown
Fogo, Twillingate, Morton's Harbour,
All around the circle

Sods and rinds to cover your flake,
Cake and tea for supper
Cod fish in the spring of the year,
Fried in maggoty butter


I don't want your maggoty fish
They're no good for winter
Well I can buy as good as that,
Way down in Bonavista!


I took Liza to a dance,
As fast as she can travel,
And every step that she could take,
Was up to her knees in gravel


Susan White she's outta sight,
Her petticoat wants a border,
Well old Sam Oliver in the dark,
He kissed her in the corner!


I'se The B'y that builds the boat and
I'se The B'y that sails her and
I'se The B'y that catches the fish and
Brings 'em home to Liza


Wednesday, April 14th, 2004, 10:38 PM
Farewell to Nova Scotia

The sun was setting in the west
The birds were singing on ev'ry tree
All nature seemed inclined to rest
But still there was no rest for me

Farewell to Nova Scotia, the sea-bound coast
Let your mountains dark and dreary be
And when I am far away on the briny oceans tossed
Will you ever heave a sigh and a wish for me?

I grieve to leave my native land
I grieve to leave my comrades all
And my aged parents whom I always held so dear
And the bonnie, bonnie lass that I do adore

The drums they do beat and the wars do alarm
The captain calls, we must obey
So farewell, farewell to Nova Scotia's charms
For it's early in the morning I am far, far away

I have three brothers and they are at rest
Their arms are folded on their breast
But a poor simple sailor just like me
Must be tossed and driven on the dark blue sea

Wednesday, April 14th, 2004, 10:46 PM
The Log Drivers' Waltz

If you should ask any girl from the parish around
What pleases her most from her head to her toes
She'll say, "I'm not sure that it's business of yours
But I do like to waltz with a log driver".


For he goes birling down a-down the white water
That's where the log driver learns to step lightly
It's birling down, a-down white water
A log driver's waltz pleases girls completely.

When the drive's nearly over, I like to go down
To see all the lads while they work on the river
I know that come evening they'll be in the town
And we all want to waltz with a log driver.

To please both my parents I've had to give way
And dance with the doctors and merchants and lawyers
Their manners are fine but their feet are of clay
For there's none with the style of a log driver.

I've had my chances with all sorts of men
But none is so fine as my lad on the river
So when the drive's over, if he asks me again
I think I will marry my log driver.

I don't think i have heard this one in a pub ... but it was one of my favourite Canadian songs as a kid ... they used to play it in the morning on tv before they played the Canadian anthem ... and i would make sure i was up good and early in the morning so I wouldn't miss it :)

Angelcynn Beorn
Thursday, April 15th, 2004, 04:39 PM
Well this ones an old rugby song that the sex pistols redid about 30 years ago. Still an old favourite though! :)

Friggin in the Riggin

It was on the good ship Venus
By Christ, ya shoulda seen us
The figurehead was a whore in bed
And the mast, a mammoth penis

The captain of this lugger
He was a dirty bugger
He wasn't fit to shovel shit
From one place to another

Friggin' in the riggin'
Friggin' in the riggin'
Friggin' in the riggin'
There was fuck all else to do

The captains name was Morgan
By Christ, he was a gorgon
Ten times a day he'd stop and play
With his fuckin' organ

The first mate's name was Cooper
By Christ he was a trooper.
He jerked and jerked until he worked
Himself into a stupor


The second mate was Andy
By Christ, he had a dandy
Till they crushed his cock on a jagged rock
For cumming in the brandy

The cabin boy was Flipper
He was a fuckin' nigger
He stuffed his ass with broken glass
And circumcised the skipper


The Captain's wife was Mabel
To fuck she was not able
So the dirty shits, they nailed her tits
Across the barroom table

The Captain had a daughter
Who fell in deep sea water
And by her squeals we knew the eels
Had found 'er sexual quarters


Angelcynn Beorn
Thursday, April 15th, 2004, 04:42 PM
Actually im pretty sure the wild rover is an old English song. At least its been doing the rounds in English pubs since before my grandads days... :?

Taras Bulba
Thursday, April 15th, 2004, 04:54 PM
I love the version of this song done by the Irish Rovers. :D


Whiskey in the Jar

As I was a-goin' over Gilgarra Mountain
I spied Colonel Farrell, and his money he was countin'.
First I drew my pistols and then I drew my rapier,
Sayin' "Stand and deliver, for I am your bold receiver."
Musha ringum duram da,
Whack fol the daddy-o,
There's whiskey in the jar.

He counted out his money and it made a pretty penny;
I put it in my pocket to take home to darlin' Jenny.
She sighed and swore she loved me and never would deceive me,
Bu the devil take the women, for they always lie so easy!
Musha rungum duram da

I went into me chamber all for to take a slumber,
To dream of gold and girls, and of course it was no wonder:
Me Jenny took me charges and she filled them up with water,
Called on Colonel Farrell to get ready for the slaughter.
Musha rungum duram da

Next mornin' early, before I rose for travel,
A-came a band of footmen and likewise Colonel Farrell.
I goes to draw my pistol, for she'd stole away my rapier,
But a prisoner I was taken, I couldn't shoot the water.
Musha rungum duram da

They put me into jail with a judge all a-writin':
For robbin' Colonel Farrell on Gilgarra Mountain.
But they didn't take me fists and I knocked the jailer down
And bid a farewell to this tight-fisted town.
Musha ringum duram da

I'd like to find me brother, the one who's in the army;
I don't know where he's stationed, be it Cork or in Killarney.
Together we'd go roamin' o'er the mountains of Kilkenny,
And I swear he'd treat me fairer than my darlin' sportin' Jenny!
Musha ringum duram da

There's some takes delight in the carriages and rollin',
Some takes delight in the hurley or the bollin',
But I takes delight in the juice of the barley,
Courtin' pretty maids in the mornin', o so early!
Musha ringum duram da

Thursday, April 15th, 2004, 09:32 PM
Actually im pretty sure the wild rover is an old English song...

English... Irish..? Whatever - it's a catchy little ditty. Actually, there is a German song that's set to the same tune:

An der Nordseeküste

Damals, vor unendlich langer Zeit,
Da machten wir Friesen am Wasser uns breit.
Die Jahre vergingen wie Saus und wie Braus,
Aber breit sehen wir Friesen auch heute noch aus.

An der Nordseeküste,
Am plattdeutschen Strand,
Sind die Fische im Wasser
Und selten am Land.

2. Nach Flut kommt die Ebbe, nach Ebbe die Flut;
Die Deiche, sie halten mal schlecht und mal gut.
Die Dünen, sie wandern am Strand hin und her
Von Grönland nach Flandern, jedenfalls ohn' Gewähr.
An der Nordseeküste . . . .

3. Die Seehunde singen ein Klagelied
Weil sie nicht mit dem Schwanz wedeln können, so'n Scheet!
Die Schafe, die blöken wie blöd auf dem Deich,
Und mit schwarzgrünen Kugeln garnier'n sie ihn reich.
An der Nordseeküste . . .

Jethro Tull
Saturday, April 17th, 2004, 08:52 AM
Molly Malone

In Dublin's fair city,
Where girls are so pretty,
I first set my eyes on sweet Molly Malone,
As she pushed her wheelbarrow
Through streets broad and narrow,
Crying, "Cockles and mussels, alive, alive oh"!
Alive, alive oh! alive, alive oh!
Crying, "Cockles and mussels, alive, alive oh"!

2. Now she was a fishmonger,
And sure twas no wonder,
For so were her mother and father before,
And they each wheeled their barrow,
Through streets broad and narrow,
Crying, "Cockles and mussels, alive, alive oh"!

3. She died of a fever,
And no one could save her,
And that was the end of sweet Molly Malone.
Now her ghost wheels her barrow,
Through streets broad and narrow,
Crying, "Cockles and mussels, alive, alive oh"!

Helter Skelter
Saturday, April 17th, 2004, 09:08 AM
The Pogues: The Sick Bed Of Cuchuliann
McCormack and Richard Tauber are singing by the bed
there's a glass of puch below you're feet
and an angel at your head
there's devils on each side of you
bottles in they're hands
gimme one more drop of poison
and you'll dream of foreign lands
When you pissed yorself in Frankfurt and got syph down in Cologne
and ya heard the rattlin's death trains as you lay there all alone
Frank Ryan bought you whiskey at a brothel in Madrid
and ya kicked some f**kin' blackshirt who was cursin' all the yids
at the sick bed of cuchuliann kneel and say a prayer
cause the ghosts are rattlin' at the door and the devil is in the chair HAY
And in the Euston tavern you screamed it was your shout
but they wouldn't give ya service so ya kicked the windows out
they took you out into the street, kicked you inthe brains
so you walked back in through the bolted door and did it all again
at the sick bed of cuchuliann kneel and say a prayer cause the ghosts are rattlin' at the door and the devils in the chair HAY
do you remember that foul evening when you heard the banshees howl
there was lazy drunken bastards singing Billy is in the bowl
they took you up to midnight mass and left you in the lurch
so you dropped a button in the plate and spewed up in the church
now you'll sing a song of liberty for blacks and packs and jocks
and they'll take you from this dump here and they'll stick you in a box
then they'll take you to cloughbrier stick you in the ground so you stick your head back out and shout you'll have another round
at the gravesite of cuchuliann kneel and say a prayer
and God is in his heaven and Billy's down by the bay, HAY

That lovely little number is about a hell of a hangover, not something you want to think about while your on the way to one, but definately a my favorite drinking song of mine:D
BTW it sounds better when you do your best Shane MacGowan imitation, so drink up:alcohol

Saturday, April 17th, 2004, 01:14 PM
I don't know if this is normal... but when bands play this song live at pubs we generally shout 'Rise up yer kilt' after each 'And its No, Nay, never' in the chorus...and I have never seen that done anywhere but in the pubs back home...

We sing something after that part as well, but it's not quite the same....:)

Whiskey in the Jar is a great song.
I also have Farewell to Nova Scotia by Cruachan on my hard drive, 'tis a good song to.

Saturday, April 17th, 2004, 01:15 PM
BTW it sounds better when you do your best Shane MacGowan imitation, so drink up:alcohol

Yeah, Shane possesses the unique gift of making a song better, the more pissed he sounds :D

Helter Skelter
Sunday, April 18th, 2004, 01:03 AM

In the year of our Lord eighteen hundred and six
We set sail from the coal quay of Cork
And we were sailin' away with a cargo of bricks
For the grand city hall in New York
We'd and elegant craft, it was rigged fore and aft
And oh, how the trade winds drove her
She had twenty three masts, and she stood several blasts
And they called her the Irish Rover.

Chorus: Fare thee well, my pretty little girl, I must sail away
Fare thee well, my pretty little girl, I must sail away.

There was Barney McGee from the Banks of the Leigh
There was Hogan from County Tyrone
There was Johnny McGirk who was scared stiff of work
And a chap from West Meade named Malone
There was slugger O'Toole who was drunk as a rule
And fighting Bill Tracy from Dover
And your man, Mick McCann, from the Banks of the Bann
Was the skipper on the Irish Rover.

We had one million bags of the best Sligo rags
We had two million barrels of bone
We had three million bales of old nanny goat tails
We had four million barrels of stone
We had five million hogs and six million dogs
And seven million barrels of porter
We had eight million sides of old blind horses hides
In the hold of the Irish Rover.

We had sailed seven years when the measles broke out
And the ship lost her way in the fog
And the whole of the crew was reduced down to two
'Twas meself and the captain's old dog
Then the ship struck a rock! Oh, Lord, what a shock!
And nearly tumbled over
Turned nine times around and the poor old dog was drowned
I'm the last of the Irish Rover.

Another favorite and pretty much the only old one I know by heart

Sunday, April 18th, 2004, 03:38 PM
I like the song "Dublin in the rare auld times"
I believe many people have covered this song.
"The Dublin City Ramblers" version I heard on the radio one time, I really liked

Rare auld times
Trad. Arr. Merry Ploughboys
Ring a ring a rosie,
as the light declines,
I remember Dublin city
in the rare auld times.

Raised on songs and stories, heroes of renown.
The passing tales and glories,that once was Dublin town.
The hallowed halls and houses,the haunting children's rhymes.
That once was part of Dublin,in the rare old times.

Oh me name it is Sean Dempseyas Dublin as can be,Born hard and late in Pimlico,in a house that ceased to be.
By trade I was a cooper,
lost out to redundancy.
Like my house that fell to progress,
my trade's a memory.
And I courted Peggy Diugnan,
as pretty as you please,A rogue and a child of Mary,
from the rebel Liberties.
I lost her to a student chap,
with skin as black as coal.
When he took her off to Birmingham,
he stole away my soul.

The years have made me bitter,
the gargle dims my brain,
'Cause Dublin keeps on changing,and nothing seems the same.
The pillar and the Met. have gone,the Royal long since pulled down,
As the gray unyielding concrete,
makes a city of my town.
Fare thee well sweet Anna Liffey,
I can no longer stay,
And watch the new glass cages,
that spring up along the quay.
My mind's too full of memories,
too old to hear new chimes,
I'm part of what was Dublin,
in the rare auld times.