Did you ever go down to an Irishman's shanty,
Where the water was scarce and the beer is aplenty,
A three-legged stool and a table to match it,
A door without hinges and nothin' to latch it?
Tread on the tail of me coat! hah, hah!
Tread on the tail of me coat!
If you're in for a row or a 'ruction,
Just tread on the tail of me coat!
Golden-haired Bobby Bell sang the old songs in his clear tenor voice,
And after I'd heard them any number of times, I'd join in with him;
He really had no choice - my friend he was,
And as true blue as his Irish heart was green.
And when we sang together, well, we sure lit up the scene.
So on Saturday night we'd close the shop when the clock struck ten,
And head for Rafferty and Kilgariff's ancient, cobwebbed bar,
Deep in God's true Irish land;
There, they welcomed us, my friend Bobby and me,
And often sang with us the words of many a Come All Ye.
The Maid Of The Sweet Brown Knoll was a favorite often called for,
And even good old Mother McRee brought out a loud encore;
But the choice of all for Bobby and me
Was the lovely and haunting Rose Of Tralee.
The pale moon was shinin' way out on the mountain,
The sun was declinin' into the blue sea,
As I strayed with my love by the clear crystal fountain,
That stands in the beautiful vale of Tralee.
She was lovely and fair as a rose of the summer,
But it was not her beauty alone that won me;
Oh, no, 'twas the truth in her eyes ever shinin',
That made me love Mary, the Rose Of Tralee.
And so we sang until closing at that kindly place.
When we left those good friends,
Everyone wore a smile on his face;
But I saw that Bobby had a tear in the eye,
He just hated to say good-bye.