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The Big Rock Candy Mountain



Riding the Rails-Dinner Car.

The Big Rock Candy Mountain,
attributed to Harry "Haywire Mac" McClintock.


BACKGROUND: In 1906 Harry "Haywire Mac" McClintock composes "Hallelujah, I'm a Bum." McClintock, a tramp entertainer, railroad boomer and organizer for the Wobblies, also wrote "The Big Rock Candy Mountain" around this time.

The Big Rock Candy Mountain (original verse)

1.
On a summer day
In the month of May
A burly bum came hiking
Down a shady lane
Through the sugar cane
He was looking for his liking
As he roamed along
He sang a song
Of the land of milk and honey
Where a bum can stay
For many a day
And he won't need any money

Chorus:
Oh the buzzin' of the bees
In the cigarette trees
Near the soda water fountain
At the lemonade springs
Where the bluebird sings
On the big rock candy mountain

2.
There's a lake of gin
We can both jump in
And the handouts grow on bushes
In the new-mown hay
We can sleep all day
And the bars all have free lunches
Where the mail train stops
And there ain't no cops
And the folks are tender-hearted
Where you never change your socks
And you never throw rocks
And your hair is never parted

Chorus:

3.
Oh, a farmer and his son,
They were on the run
To the hay field they were bounding
Said the bum to the son,
"Why don't you come
To that big rock candy mountain?"
So the very next day
They hiked away,
The mileposts they were counting
But they never arrived
At the lemonade tide
On the big rock candy mountain

Chorus:





Hoboes riding the rails on a model train layout.

The Big Rock Candy Mountain (contempoarry verse)

1.
One evening as the sun went down
And the jungle fires were burning,
Down the track came a hobo hiking,
He said, "Boys, I'm not turning
I'm heading for a land that's far away
Beside the crystal fountain
I'll see you all this coming fall
In the Big Rock Candy Mountain*

Chorus:
Oh, the buzzing of the bees in the cigarette trees,
By the soda water fountain
Near the lemonade springs where the bluebird sings
On the Big Rock Candy Mountain

2.
In the Big Rock Candy Mountain,
It's a land that's fair and bright,
The handouts grow on bushes
And you sleep out every night.
The boxcars all are empty
And the sun shines every day
I'm bound to go where there ain't no snow
Where the sleet don't fall and the winds don't blow
In the Big Rock Candy Mountain.

Chorus:

3.
In the Big Rock Candy Mountain
You never change your socks
And little streams of alky-hol
Come trickling down the rocks
O the shacks all have to tip their hats
And the railway bulls are blind
There's a lake of stew and gingerale too
And you can paddle all around it in a big canoe
In the Big Rock Candy Mountain

Chorus:

4.
In the Big Rock Candy Mountain
The cops have wooden legs
The bulldogs all have rubber teeth
And the hens lay soft-boiled eggs
The box-cars all are empty
And the sun shines every day
I'm bound to go where there ain't no snow
Where the sleet don't fall and the winds don't blow
In the Big Rock Candy Mountain.

Chorus:

5.
In the Big Rock Candy Mountain
The jails are made of tin
You can slip right out again
As soon as they put you in
There ain't no short-handled shovels
No axes, saws nor picks
I'm bound to stay where you sleep all day
Where they hung the jerk that invented work
In the Big Rock Candy Mountain

Chorus:





The Big Rock Candy Mountains (the hoboes paradise)

1.
Where the ham and eggs grow on trees
And bread grows from the ground
And the springs spurt booze to your knees
And there's more than enough to go around.

Chorus:

2.
Where the chickens craw into the skillet
And cook themselves up nice and brown
And the cows churn their butter in the mornin'
And squirt their milk all around.

Chorus:

3.
Where the lunches grow on the bushes
And bump the 'boes in the eyes
And every night at eleven
The sky rains down apple pies.

Chorus:

4.
His home is where the bird sing
And young girls swim in the fountains
And the cigarettes grow with the matches
In the big potato mountains.

Chorus:
In the Big Rock Candy Mountains
You never change your socks
And little streams of alcohol
Come a'trickling down the rocks
The boxcars are all empty
And the railroad bulls are blind
There's a lake of stew and whiskey too
You can paddle all around 'em in a big canoe
In the Big Rock Candy Mountains.





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