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Diesel And Shale

It was in the year of '53', the old man in dolphin sent for me
I've sent for you boy for I want you to know,
I’ve booked you a berth in the waters below,
with the diesel and shale, diesel and shale,
I’ve booked you a berth with the diesel and shale.

But when I protested, I’m no volunteer
he said we've had none for many a year.
But that's a wee secret between you and me
there's many a pressed man down under the sea,
with the diesel and shale, diesel and shale,
there's many a pressed man with the diesel and shale.

Oh doctor, Oh doctor, I don't think I'm well.
Well never mind sonny, we'll very soon tell.
Try touching your toes and counting to three,
there that proves it your fit to go under the sea,
with the diesel and shale, diesel and shale,
you're fit to go under with the diesel and shale.

So I went to the pusser's to get me a rig,
they gave me a sweater ten sizes too big.
I went down to the boat like a big polar bear,
twas then that I noticed the smell in the air,
with the diesel and shale, diesel and shale
the smell in the air was the diesel and shale.

A 'toot' on the klaxon, a bang on the gong,
and soon we were down where no mortal belongs.
With the bread going hard and the air so stale,
and they mix you a cocktail of diesel and shale,
with the diesel and shale, diesel and shale,
they mix you a cocktail of diesel and shale.

We went to the 'med' and cruised for a year
where the sea is so blue and the sky is so clear.
At least that's what they tell us, but we wouldn't know,
for the views not so good when your fathoms below,
with the diesel and shale, diesel and shale,
the views not so good with the diesel and shale.

'Oh molly', 'Oh molly', will you be mine,
submariners wives have a hell of a time.
There's money each week and cash on the nail,
if you can put up with the diesel and shale,
with the diesel and shale, diesel and shale.
If you can put up with the diesel and shale.

Then the big man in dolphin sent for me at last,
it's time to go back to a ship with a mast.
I feel like a "Jonah" who's leaving the whale,
for I’m saying goodbye to the diesel and shale,
with the diesel and shale, diesel and shale,
for I’m saying goodbye to the diesel and shale.


1 comment

Like the rst of Cyril's stuff, been playing this for years, and I try to stick to his version out of respect to the big fella. The lyrics below are from Navy Cuts, other people have recorded it and played it, but sometimes miss out the Susie verse, and Crabby dear Crabby verse at the end

DIESEL AND SHALE

On the fifth of November back in fifty-three
The big man at Dolphin he sent for me:
'I brought you here, boy, 'cause I want you to know
We've booked you a berth in the water below,
With the diesel and shale, diesel and shale,
We've booked you a berth with the diesel and shale.'

Well, when I protested: 'I'm no volunteer',
He said: 'We ain't had one in many a year,
But that's a wee secret between you and me;
There's many a pressed man down under the sea,
With the diesel and shale, diesel and shale,
Down under the sea with the diesel and shale.'

'Oh doctor, dear doctor, I don't think I'm well.'
'Well, never mind, sonny, we'll very soon tell.
Try holding your breath while I count up to three.
There, that proves that you're fit to go down in the sea,'
With the diesel and shale, diesel and shale,
To go down in the sea with the diesel and shale.'

I went to the storeroom to gather me rig
They gave me a sweater ten sizes too big,
I crawled down the boat like an old polar bear,
And I says to meself: 'There's a smell in the air,
And it's diesel and shale, diesel and shale ,
There's smell in the air and it's diesel and shale.'

A push on the klaxon and a ring on the gongs,
And then I was down where no mortal belongs,
Where the air's going bad and the bread's getting stale,
And they mix you a nightcap of diesel and shale,
Diesel and shale, diesel and shale,
They mix you a nightcap of diesel and shale.

Oh Susie, Oh Susie, Will you be mine?
Submariner's wives have a hell of a time
You'll live like a duchess with cash on the nail
If you don't mind the smell of the diesel and shale
Diesel and shale, diesel and shale,
If you don't mind the smell of the diesel and shale

Keep walking, keep walking, you foolish young man,
You know that I never would give you my hand.
Your hair is too thin and your face is too pale,
Cause you spend too much time with your diesel and shale,
Diesel and shale, diesel and shale,
You spend too much time with your diesel and shale.

We circled the Med. for a summer or two,
Where the sun is so warm and the waters so blue.
Well, that's what they tell me, but I wouldn't know,
'Cause the view ain't so good when you're stuck down below,
With the diesel and shale, diesel and shale,
When you're stuck down below with the diesel and shale.

Then the big man at Dolphin he told me at last:
'lt's time you went back to a ship with a mast.'
I feel like a Jonah a-leaving his whale
Cause l'm saying goodbye to the diesel and shale,
The diesel and shale, diesel and shale,
I'm saying goodbye to the diesel and shale.

Oh Crabby, dear Crabby, I bid you adieu,
And Synagogue Dick and the Black Mamba too.
l'll do all me travelling by road and by rail,
And you know what to do with your diesel and shale,
Your diesel and shale, diesel and shale,
You know what to do with your diesel and shale.

   JBN Sun, 5 Jun 2016

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