Notes

Original Lyrics by
Denis Kevans and Seamus Gill

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MP3 Sample

Concrete and Glass

New words by Charlie Ipcar, 1985

Adapted from Across the Western Suburbs
by Denis Kevans & Seamus Gill, 1973
Australian parody of All for Me Grog

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Oh, me name it is Fred,
In Portland born and bred,
And the Old Port used to be me home, boys
But it's caused me heart to grieve,
For I've had to take me leave,
Now across them western suburbs
I must roam, boys!

Chorus:
In concrete and glass,
Portland's disappearing fast;
It's all gone for profit and for plunder;
Though we really want to stay,
They keep forcing us away,
Now across the western suburbs
We must wander!

Chorus

Now, where is me house,
Me old three-decker house?
It's all gone for profit and for plunder;
For the wreckers of the town
Just come up and knocked it down;
Now across the western suburbs
We must wander!

Chorus

And where is me pub,
Me Irish Village Pub?
It's all gone for profit and for plunder;
Now when you walk in the door,
You'll find carpets on the floor,
And you'll have to wear a tie
To get your beer, boys!

Chorus

And where is me port,
Me old working port?
It's all gone for profit and for plunder;
Now when you walk down the dock,
All ye'll hear is disco rock;
And ye'll have to dry ye nets in a laundromat, boys!

Chorus

Now, before the city's wrecked
Them developers must be decked,
For it's plain to see they do not give a bugger,
And if them bandits have their way
We soon shall see the day
When we'll all be driving in from Madawaska!

Chorus


Widgery Wharf with Condos in background

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Notes:

In the early 1970's the inner city neighborhood of Woolloomooloo in Sydney, Australia, was threatened by massive urban renewal. The resistance by the residents; the cooperation gained from the building and trades union; the roles of the politicians, real estate speculators, and city planners; the battles with goon squads and with the police; is all effectively presented in the documentary film Woolloomooloo. Sydney poet Denis Kevans and Builders Laborers organizer Seamus Gill were in the thick of the fight and livened things up with such great songs as this one, patterned after the old sailors drinking song "All for Me Grog."

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Across the Western Suburbs

Words by Denis Kevans and Seamus Gill, 1973
Tune: traditional All for Me Grog

Oh, me name it is Fred,
In Sydney born and bred,
And the inner-city used to be my home, boys,
But it's caused me heart to grieve
For I've had to take me leave,
Now across the Western Suburbs I must roam, boys.

Chorus:

Under concrete and glass,
Sydney's disappearing fast;
It's all gone for profit and for plunder;
Though we really want to stay,
They keep driving us away,
Now across the Western suburbs we must wander.

Now where is me house,
Me little terrace house?
It's all gone for profit and for plunder,
For the wreckers of the town
Just came up and knocked it down;
Now across the Western Suburbs we must wander. (CHO)

Before I even knew it,
We were shifted to Mount Druitt,
And the planners never gave me any say, boys;
Now it really makes me weep,
I am just at home to sleep
For it takes me hours to get to work each day, boys. (CHO)

What's happened to the pub,
Our little local pub,
Where we used to have a drink when we were dry, boys?
Now we can't get in the door
For there's carpets on the floor,
And you won't be served a beer without a tie, boys. (CHO)

Now I'm living in a box
In the West Suburban blocks,
And the place is nearly driving me to tears, boys;
Poorly planned and badly built
And it's mortgaged to the hilt,
But they say it will be mine in forty years, boys. (CHO)

Now before the city's wrecked,
Those developers must be decked,
For it's plain to see they do not give a bugger;
And we soon will see the day
If those bandits have their way,
We will all be driven out past Wagga Wagga.


Notes:
Mount Druitt is a suburb about 20 miles west of Sydney
Wagga Wagga is a small town some 400 miles west of Sydney