Gregory Grene
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work’s too bloody hard

travailler c'est trop dur

et voler c'est pas beau

d'mander la charité

c'est qu'que chose j'peux pas faire

chaque jour que moi je vis

on m' demande de quoi je vis

j' dis que j' vis sur l'amour

et j'espère de viv' vieux


work’s too bloody hard

stealing isn’t pretty

getting by on handouts

means getting by on pity

every day of my life

someone asks how i’ll get by

i say i’ll live on love

and i hope to never die


i’ll pick up this old box

run my fingers down the row

i’ll play a tune or two

let the dancers come and go

for this life’s too sweet and short

to leave it sad my friend

there’s no time for tears and sorrow

let’s go dancing to our end


if i end up playing gigs

every night and every day

any pub or any club

that will let me sing away

i might think to myself

is this what i want to do

but i think i know the answer

when i sing and i look at you


trad cajun,translated/adapted by gregory grene, ©34th street music ascap

tune: crombie’s two-step,gregory grene, ©34th street music ascap


whiskey asylum


there’s shade from the sun there’s warmth in the cold,

there’s relief from your sorrow there’s someone to hold,

it’s the ship in the bottle when i’m growing old,

sailing to whiskey asylum


if i once had a dream and i let it slip by

the anodyne cream takes the tears from your eye

and whatever may haunt me,the riders pass by

when i’m snug in my whiskey asylum

under ben bulben on top of the heap

on the path in between where i started to creep

the road of the righteous was thorny and steep

and i sank to the ground and i drifted to sleep


do you laugh as you pass, do you just hurry by

do you kindly stoop down with that look in your eye

do you know that it’s you just as much as it’s i

that’s a dream in this whiskey asylum

but i wish you could hear and i wish i could say

the thought that still runs through my head on this day,

is a love that has vanished just hidden away

could i fall to my knee,could i search, could i pray


gregory grene, ©34thstreet music ascap

tune: vances’ waltz, gregory grene, ©34th street music ascap


austin tunes


jim and mary’s /

book-a-boat box /

louisiana lady

gregory grene, ©34thstreet music ascap


i saw you walk by on the street

it was just a mad illusion

a thing of dreams and days gone by

a moment of confusion

just an unfamiliar face

i knew you’d gone, and long ago

saw this stranger in your place

it wasn’t you i know

not you i know

not you i know

not you i know


i heard you laugh that funny laugh

just the other day

misty rain through the window pane

watch it fade away

disappear in a passing hum

quiet like an echoed call

lost in the sound that’s all around

and never you at all


i thought i saw you look at me

from a passing subway car

the flash of light in the tunnel’s night

the rumble from afar

i called to you, you didn’t hear

there was no way that you could

and of course i knew it wasn’t you

from the platform where i stood


close my eyes and float above

the revelry below

within this dream this thought of love

remembered ebb and flow

and as i lie and dream of you

i know that you’re not here

but – know that you’re within my eye

you whisper in my ear

this you i know


gregory grene, ©34thstreet music ascap

liverpool pandora


so fare thee well, my own true love,

when i return united we will be

it’s not the leaving of liverpool that grieves me

my darling when i think on thee


so fare thee well my own true love

i cross the raging main

it might well be a bloody long time

before i come again

the wind is in the beer halls

the tinkling bar bells say

come back you pickled paddy

come back, demand a lay

i traveled near, i traveled far

i stood in mansions fine

dreamt about oases

where the water turned to wine

and if in dream or if in life

my dreams should all come true

the first one that i’d call to life

is the one i had of you

and if i ask what have i done

does anybody know

questions last forever

or else they start to grow

can i shove them in a box

stuff them in the ground

plug them with a nickel

to stifle fury’s sound


i sometimes thought i should go mad

from thoughts inside my brain

too little brains or too much thought

or maybe it’s the same

i took the wise precaution

of airing out my head

threw out the old obsessions

and i bought new ones instead

i watered them with whiskey

i watched them start to sprout

when nicely germinated

i start to shout them out

the wisdom i’m imparting

mere mortals cannot tell

the knowledge of the salmon

and a solomon from hell

but if i’m feeling lonely

and the voices turning sad

or start to reminisce

upon a joy that i once had

i’ll spin them into silence

i’ll bottle them anew

with the dream i had of heaven

the thought i had of you


leaving of liverpool, trad arr.

liverpool pandora, gregory grene, ©34th street music ascap


the jail of cluan meala


how hard is my fortune,how vain my repining.

the strong rope of fate for my young neck is twining.

my strength is departed,my cheeks sunk and sallow

while i languish in chains in the jail of cluan meala.


no lad in the village was ever yet milder.

i could sport with a child and my sport be no wilder.

i could dance without tiring from morning till evening

and my goal ball i'd strike to the lightning of heaven.


at my bed foot decaying my hurley is lying.

through the lads of the village my goal ball is flying.

my horse 'mong the neighbors neglected may fallow.

while this heart young and gay lies cold in cluan meala.


next sunday the pattern at home will be keeping.

the lads of the village the fields will be sweeping.

and the dance of fair maidens the evening will hallow.

while this heart young and gay lies cold in cluan meala.


príosún chluain meala,trans. jeremiah john callanan (1795 – 1829)

trad arr. gregory grene,©34th street music ascap



nancy brown


in the hills of west virginia lived a girl named nancy brown

there never was a finer lass in village or in town

now nancy and the deacon climbed the mountainside one noon

they had barely reached the summit when then very very soon

they came rolling down the mountain, rolling down the mountain

they came rolling down the mountain past the dam

for she wouldn’t give that deacon anything that he was seekin’

she remained as pure as west virginia ham


then there came the local trapper with his phrases soft and fine

took nancy up the mountain but as soon as she read his mind

she came rolling down the mountain past the shack

she remained as i have stated, not the least contaminated

she remained as pure as pappy’s apple jack


then there came a city slicker with his hundred-dollar bills

took nancy in his packard and they drove up in the hills

and they stayed up in the mountains all that night

she came down in the morning early, more a woman than a girly

and her father chased the hussy out of sight


now she’s living in the city mighty swell

she’s drinking beer and skittles, and eating fancy victuals,

and the west virginia hills can go to hell


trad arr. gregory grene, ©34thstreet music ascap

tune: ballygarvy gallop,gregory grene, ©34th street music ascap


liverpool lou


when i go a-walking, i hear people talking

schoolchildren playing, i know what they're saying

they're saying you'll grieve me, that you will deceive me

some morning you'll leave me all packed up and gone


oh liverpool lou,lovely liverpool lou

why don't you behave,love, like the other girls do?

why must my poor heart keep following you

stay home and love me,my liverpool lou


the sound from the river keep telling me ever

that i should forget you like i'd never met you

tell me their song, love,was never more wrong love

say i belong love to my liverpool lou


and all that they said,love, those voices long dead, love

with the waters have fled,love, whether baseless or true,

and i see you today, love,and i hear a voice say, love

maybe some dreams need stay,love, as free as were you


by dominic behan, © emi miller catalog

adaptation by gregory grene, ©34th street music ascap


paper and pins


i will give you paper and pins, for that’s the way that love begins,

if you will marry, marry,marry, marry,

if you marry me.


i don’t want your paper and pins, if that’s the way that love begins,

and i’ll not marry, marry,marry, marry,

i’ll not marry you.


i will give you a rocking chair, to sit in the garden and take fresh air

i will give you a silver spoon, to feed the baby in the afternoon

i will give you a golden ball, to bounce from the kitchen to the hall

i will give you the keys to the press, and all of the money that i possess


if you give me the keys to the press, and all of the money that you possess,

then i will marry you.


ha-ha-ha, now i see, you love my money, but you don’t love me,

and i’ll not marry you.


trad arr. gregory grene

tune: kerry polka, trad arr.gregory grene




i lost emily in san francisco

now she won’t even talk tome

when i first knew her

i really couldn’t stop her

she’s silent now and she won’t talk to me


we were driving through the little lanes of napa

dreaming of the wine we’d have to share

she told me go this way

she told me go that way

i drove on like i simply didn’t care


and then she fell silent and said nothing

i thought that it would wear off later on

but i was wrong

i was oh so wrong

her silence wore on and on and on


i suppose i never said i loved her

i suppose i never really held her tight

i just took her for granted

thought she knew she was wanted

now i know i really wasn’t right


emily come back to me i love you

emily come back to me i beg

after all you said

now your voice is dead

i just watch your face and read your lips instead


gregory grene, ©34thstreet music ascap

tune: fotherick’s flutter,gregory grene, ©34th street music ascap


andi’s tunes


andi’s tune /

alexander macandrew


gregory grene, ©34thstreet music ascap


musicians on the album:


gregory grene, vocals and accordion




john doyle, guitar, mandola,backing vocals

ed kollar, bass guitar

darren maloney, banjo

joanie madden, tin whistle,low whistle, flute

mattie mancuso, fiddle

chris higginbottom, drums,cajon

tony cedras, trumpet, guitar

mario grigorov, piano

cillian vallely, low whistle

anna culliton, bodhran

daniel chaudin, percussion

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