Black and Tan

Words & Music:

Geoff Drummond (3.40)

Dateline... Adelaide, SA

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One of Australia's great national characteristics is political irreverence; an ingrained anti-authoritarianism which often expresses itself as a healthy skepticism concerning politicians and their motives. To the consternation of pollsters and pundits alike, we are not a predictable electorate. Our historical origins seem to have left us somewhat cynical about the processes of government. It is sadly ironic, then, that the very attributes which allow politicians to gain ascendancy within the two party system in this country tend, in the long run, to alienate them almost totally from their original constituents. This song of Geoff's, about Mateship and Loyalty, is a gentle reminder to all our 'pollies' that the most important person, in Australia's version of democracy, must always be the voter.

Well strike me stone dead! It's wearing the suit

and a Windsor Knot strangles it's collar!

A white handkerchief, razor creases to boot;

it looks like a man with a dollar!

Now, tell me old son, how the hell have you been?

You can bet you're a sight for sore eyes.

The years have been long and the times have been lean

since we last shared the days of our lives.


Chorus: There's a local round the corner from here.

If that pub is still open, we could sink a few beers.

Throw out on the counter the cloak of the years,

and tell some tall tales and the truth when we can, over glasses of old

'Black and Tan'.


Now come on Old Son, I'm sure you'll remember,

Macca and Dave, you and me;

'The Four Musketeers' we christened ourselves,

'Swashbucklers of Circular Quay'.

And you had that car, that damned old Monaro;

the guzzler with the bottomless tank.

We scraped out our wallets and dug holes in our pockets

to pay for the petrol it drank.




Well you look such a swell, and you've done so damned well!

I hear you're a member of the Parliament crowd.

You were a number one fan of the staunch Labor stand,

and I bet you're a 'Bobby Dazzler' on the floor of 'The House;

the right man to have in a 'stouch'.


But, tell me old Son, one thing I must know.

Beneath the chiaking and bluster;

behind the closed doors with the Caucus room boys,

is there a place for the workers to muster?

For I've seen a few dreams come apart at the seams

and there's a change in your "Nays" and your "Ayes".

For the years have been long and the times have been lean

since you last shared the days of our lives.




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