A song with a world-wide reputation and many local versions and verses, here is a version collected in Australia & first published by the Bush Music Club in Singabout The Journal of Australian Folksong, Vol 3, no.3, 1958.
It was collected by Redd Sullivan from the Chief Refrigeration Engineer on the SS Tekoa in 1953. The second verse was written by BMC member Peter Francis, and the last verse sent by an English contributor Tam Murrell from Twickenham. BMC members localised the pub names and it became almost the theme song of the club and is still wildly popular 60 years later.
The first issue of Singabout was released in Summer 1956, sixteen months after BMC was founded, and the last issue was released in 1967. The Editorial in Singabout Vol 1, no. 1 included the following - In "SINGABOUT" we shall give expression to the aims of THE BUSH MUSIC CLUB. Briefly these are to popularise Australian folk song, and to encourage the composition of a new kind of song - one that is traditional in style but contemporary in theme.
In his introduction to Singabout Selected Reprints Editor Bob Bolton said - My choice of material has, despite some assistance, been personal. One important factor has been to show the sort of song or poem brought to the public through Singabout. I have not made any distinctions between traditional and and contemporary material - whatever these terms mean to you. In a living tradition these terms are hard to pin down.
Bob also listed the Editors of Singabout In approximately chronological order (frequently overlapping) they were John Meredith, Alan Scott, Gay Scott (nee Terry), Gil Small, Joan Small, Brian Loughlin, Eric Bolton and Harry Glendinning.
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