I Had a Hat (When I Came In)

from by Allison Crowe

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James Mooney's tune - first popularized in 1940s America by Ray Perkins, then the Andrews Sisters. The song's pop sound was blended with Irish melodies by Bathurst, New Brunswick-born Charlie Chamberlain, "The Singing Lumberjack" in the the Canadian (from Prince Edward Island) combo Don Messer and His Islanders. This century, the song has been revived by The Government Rams and others.

lyrics

I Had a Hat (When I Came In)

Composed by James Mooney

I had a hat when I came in and I hung it on the rack,
And I'll have a hat when I go out or I'll break somebody's back;
I'm a decent man, I am, I am, and I don't want to shout,
But I had a hat when I came in and I'll have a hat when I go out!

Casey wore his brand new hat to Murphy's wake last night,
Someone stole his hat and, boys, it started up a fight;
Casey smashed the furniture, the radio as well,
He nearly woke the corpse up when he began to yell:

Oh, I had a hat when I came in and I hung it on the rack,
And I'll have a hat when I go out or I'll break somebody's back;
I'm a decent man, I am, I am, and I don't want to shout,
But I had a hat when I came in and I'll have a hat when I go out!

Casey kept on shouting, boys, they couldn't keep him quiet,
Someone phoned up for the cops to come and stop the riot;
Two cops rushed into the room, but Casey laid them out,
He fired them through the window, they both heard Casey shout:

Oh, I had a hat when I came in and I hung it on the rack,
And I'll have a hat when I go out or I'll break somebody's back;
I'm a decent man, I am, I am, and I don't want to shout,
But I had a hat when I came in and I'll have a hat when I go out!

Casey kept on shouting, boys, till one-eyed Paddy Flynn,
Socked him on the whiskers with a great big rolling pin;
He knocked poor Casey senseless, it was an awful clout,
As he lay there unconscious Casey kept on shouting out:

Oh, I had a hat when I came in and I hung it on the rack,
And I'll have a hat when I go out or I'll break somebody's back;
I'm a decent man, I am, I am, and I don't want to shout,
But I had a hat when I came in and I'll have a hat when I go out!

I had a hat when I came in and I hung it on the rack,
And I'll have a hat when I go out or I'll break somebody's back;
I'm a decent man, I am, I am, and I don't want to shout,
But I had a hat when I came in and I'll have a hat when I go out!

credits

from Newfoundland Vinyl 3, released October 20, 2015

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Allison Crowe Corner Brook, Newfoundland and Labrador

"Why music?" "Why breathing?"

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