Arthur McBride

Record Tracklist

  1. Arthur McBride -:-- / 4:35
This is a great old song about the perils of forced conscription long ago suffered by many a young Irish lad out for a simple night on the town. The music and the basics of the arrangement came to me in a session at home in Dungarvan, quite by accident when I was asked to sing this song and I couldn’t remember to tune.
So… I faked it and came up with this!


I had a first cousin called Arthur McBride,
he and I took a stroll down by the seaside,
a-seeking good fortune and what might be the tide,
being just as the day was it was dawning.
After restin’ we both took a tramp,
and we met Sergeant Harper and Corporal Cramp
Besides the wee drummer who beat up the camp,

with his row-dee-dow-dow in the morning.

He says my young fellows if you will enlist,
a guinea you quickly will have in your fist
Besides a crown for to kick up the dust,
and drink the King’s health in the morning.
Had we been fools as to take the advance,
with a wee bit of money we’d have no chance
and you have no scruples to send us to France

Where we would be killed in the morning.

He says my young fellows, if I hear one word,
I’ll instantly now out with my sword
And into your bodies as strength will afford,
So now my gay devils take warning
But Arthur and I we took in the odds,
we gave them no chance to launch out their swords
Our whacking shillelaghs came over their heads,
and bid them right smart in the morning.

And as for the drummer, we rifled his pouch,
and made a football of his row-dee-dow-dow
Into the ocean to rock and to roll,
and barring the day its returnin’
As for the rapier that hung by his side,
We flung it as far as we could in the tide
To the Devil I bid you, says Arthur McBride,
to temper your steel in the morning