Henry's Songbook

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If It Wasn't For The Unions

  • (Irish trad / Matt McGinn)

    Toora loora loora loo
    I'll tell you something awfu' true
    Wouldn't have your telly the noo
    If it wasn't for the union

    I had a boss in Aberdeen
    The nicest fella that ever was seen
    He must have thought me helluva green
    Before I joined the union

    I had a boss named Allardyce
    He was really helluva nice
    Except for the way he loaded the dice
    Before I joined the union

    A pal of mine has bought a car
    A second-handed Jaguar
    He wouldn't hae travelled half as far
    If it wasn't for the union

    The bosses they were doing fine
    Little children working down the mine
    They'd have them on the assembly lines
    If it wasn't for the union

    So men and women all agree
    It's time to rise up off your knee
    And raise the banner of unity
    Forward with the union

  • Tune: The British Army

Susannes Folksong-Notizen

  • [1984:] The tune is the same as Jeannie Robertson uses for Killiecrankie [...] except that Jeannie ends every verse on the tonic [...] so that verse and chorus have exactly the same tune. Matt has greatly improved on this by making the verse end on a dominant cadence [...] "Matt wrote this song about 1964", [Hamish Imlach] says. "The press were vilifying the Unions ... both Matt and I adapted the words from time to time ... it's an Irish tune, often sung to words which end, 'Come and join the British Army'. [...] Hamish puts over this song with a kind of cool verve, never overusing his powerful voice. It is still popular in the more politically minded west, Matt's old home territory. (Munro, Revival 156f)

  • [1985:] The press in Britain seems to blame all of our economical woes on the trade unions. This song from the late great Matt McGinn reminds us of the debt we owe the unions. (Notes Hamish Imlach, 'Sonny's Dream')

  • [1995:] From the late great Matt McGinn a song even more relevant now in the Britain of the 90s than in the 60s when Matt wrote it and I first recorded it. (Notes Hamish Imlach, 'More and Merrier')

Quelle: Scotland

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aktualisiert am 09.08.2000