The Jolly Beggarman (Barry Taylor) MIDI
See also: Jolly Beggar Dude (Great Big Sea)
And also: Little Beggar Man (Little John Cameron)
midi file   alt: midi file

I am a little beggarman, a begging I have been,
For three score years in this little isle of green;
I'm known along the Liffey from the Basin to the Zoo,
And everybody calls me by the name of Johnny Dhu.

Of all the trades a going, sure the begging is the best,
For when a man is tired he can sit him down and rest;
He can beg for his dinner, he has nothing else to do,
But to slip around the corner with his old rigadoo.

I slept in a barn one night in Currabawn,
A shocking wet night it was, but I slept until the dawn;
There was holes in the roof and the raindrops coming thru,
And the rats and the cats were a playing peek-a-boo.

Who did I waken but the woman of the house,
With her white spotted apron and her calico blouse;
She began to frighten and I said boo,
Sure, don't be afraid at all, it's only Johnny Dhu.

I met a little girl while a walkin out one day,
Good morrow, little flaxen haired girl, I did say;
Good morrow, little beggarman, and how do you do,
With your rags and your tags and your auld rigadoo?

I'll buy a pair of leggin's and a collar and a tie,
And a nice young lady I'll go courting by and by;
I'll buy a pair of goggles and I'll color them with blue,
And an old fashioned lady I will make her too.

So, all along the high road with my bag upon my back,
Over the fields with my bulging heavy sack;
With holes in my shoes and my toes a peeping thru,
Singing, skin a ma rink a doodle with my auld rigadoo.

O, I must be going to bed for it's getting late at night,
The fire is all raked and now 'tis out of light;
For now you've heard the story of my auld rigadoo,
So, good and God be with you, from auld Johnny Dhu.

####.... Author unknown. Variant of The Little Beggarman (Johnny Dhu) collected by Barry Taylor and published on-line in Barry Taylor's Traditional Irish Tunebook ....####
A variant was also collected in 1925 by Colm O'Lochlainn and published as #26, The Beggarman's Song, in More Irish Street Ballads, 1978.


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