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DAYS OF '49

(trad./Dylan)

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"Days of '49" came originally from "Old Put's Golden Songster", put together by Old Put himself in Gold Rush Days. He found that, while there was no money in the mines, there were plenty of miners willing to pay for any kind of music or entertainment, this being a scarce commodity. The real money in the gold fields was made by the grocers, dry good salesmen, saloon keepers, and, I guess, musicians. Put probably intended the song to be comic, but people have since found sad truth in it.

Jeff Davis, liner notes for Jeff Warner & Jeff Davis, "Days of Forty-nine" (Minstrel JD-206, 1977)


Lyrics as recorded by Bob Dylan on Mar 4, 1970, Columbia Studios, Nashville, TN, released on "Self Portrait."
Transcribed by Manfred Helfert


I'm old Tom Moore from the bummer's shore
In the good old golden days.
They call me a bummer and a gin sot, too
But what cares I for praise?
I wander around from town to town
Just like a roving sign,
And all the people say "There goes Tom Moore,
In the days of '49."
CHORUS:
In the days of old, in the days of gold,
How oftentimes I repine
For the days of old
When we dug up the gold,
In the days of '49.
My comrades they all loved me well,
A jolly saucy crew.
A few hard cases I will recall
Though they all were brave and true.
Whatever the pinch they never would flinch,
They never would fret or whine.
Like good old bricks they stood the kicks
In the days of '49.
CHORUS:
In the days of old, in the days of gold,
How ofttimes I repine
For the days of old
When we dug up the gold,
In the days of '49.
There was New York Jake, the butcher's boy,
He was always getting tight.
And every time that he'd get booked (?)
He was spoiling for a fight.
Then Jake rampaged against a knife
In the hands of old Bob Syne,
And over Jake they held a wake
In the days of '49.
CHORUS:
In the days of old, in the days of gold,
How oftentimes I repine
For the days of old
When we dug up the gold,
In the days of '49.
Oh!!

There was Poker Bill, one of the boys
Who was always in a game,.
Whether he lost or whether he won,
To him it was always the same.
He would ante up and draw his cards
And he would you go hatful blind.
In a game with death, Bill lost his breath
In the days of '49.

Oh my goodness!

CHORUS:
In the days of old, in the days of gold,
In the daytimes I repine,
In the days of old
In the days of gold,
Those were days of '49.
There was Ragshag Bill from Buffalo,
I never will forget.
He would roar all day and he'd roar all night
And I guess he's roaring yet.
One day he fell in a prospect hole,
In a roaring bad design,
And in that hole roared out his soul
In the days of '49.
CHORUS:
In the days of old, in the days of gold,
How ofttimes I repine
For the days of old
When we dug up the gold,
In the days of '49.
Oh, the comrades all that I've had,
There's none that's left to boast.
And I'm left alone in my misery
Like some ol' poor wandering ghost.
And I pass by from town to town,
They call me the rambling sign.
There goes Tom Moore, a bummer sure,
In the days of '49.
CHORUS:
In the days of old, in the days of gold,
How oftentimes I repine
For the days of old
When we dug up the gold,
In the days of '49.
In the days of old
When we dug up the gold,
How ofttimes I repine,
In the days of old,
In the days of gold,
In the days of '49.
Oooh!


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