Digital Tradition Mirror

Swan Necked Valve

Swan Necked Valve
(Alex Russell)

 When Strathclyde was in Brigton [When I was in the factory] and my time was nea
rly oot
 What happened in the monkey shed I'll tell ye a' aboot.

 Rickie doo dum da, doo dum da,
 Rickie, tickie doo dum day.

 A sneezer o' a job came in and I was left to solve
 The problem of the makin' o' the swan-necked valve.

 I looked at it and wondered where the pairtin I should mak'
 And syne I prayed the gaffer he would come and tak' it back.

 But nothing came to save me and I had to mak' a delve
 I worked wi' trepidation on the swan-necked valve.

 I took a double pairtin' wi' a tap and drag as well,
 And every snug was aff the box - ye've seen that kind yersel'.

 My mates a' looked at me and said - "Ye never will evolve
 A system for the makin' o' the swn-necked valve."

 I got a clamp fu' six feet long and stuck it doon the side,
 And in the absence o' a pin, that was my only guide.

 And tho' my knees were shakin', sure I worked wi' grim resolve,
 That clamp stood like a mast aboon the swan-necked valve.

 They sent my brither Sammy in to help me close and cast,
 And syne the first thing that he did was ca' awa' the mast.

 So noo I didna ha'e a guide; my heid seemed tae revolve,
 As pairt by pairt we closed by guess, the swan-necked valve.

 From 'The Singing Island' by Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger. The notes to the so
ng say:
 There are few iron-moulders in Britain who have not heard of Alex Russel of Dun
dee, the
 author of this song, for Russell is the undisputed bard of the iron-founding in
dustry. An admirer
 and disciple of Robert Burns, Russell excercises his considerable gifts by reco
rding in verse
 the day-to-day struggles of his fellow workers. The air is the one usually asso
ciated with The
 Keach in the Creel.

This was on an old ELEKTRA LP called "The Iron Muse"---industrial songs from Gre
 Britain. I thought it was Lou Killen singing it, but maybe not...[AT]


Thanks to Mudcat for the Digital Tradition!

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