ONCE ABOARD THE LUGGER
(The Operatic Villain)
 
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I'm an operatic villain of the very deepest dye
With my bright and shining dagger and my dark and roving eye
A name that sounds Italian and a voice the deepest bass
That shakes the building, and, as critics term it, fills the place
Of course I love a maiden who is virtuous and young
And for crimes that I've committed try to get the hero hung
All my songs refer to drinking, and to sailing o'er the Main
With a stiring Chorus: something like the following refrain

Chorus: Once aboard the lugger, and the girl will then be mine
Fill a foaming cannikin, and quaff the good Rhine wine
Out upon the deep when the lights are low
For the honour and glory of old England.


As a rule I am a robber, or a bold bad buccaneer
Pursuing timid maidens and a villainous career
In fiction I quaff mighty draughts of good Rhione wine so red
While the fact is I regale myself with stout and mild instead
As a pirate or a rover o'er my victims' wrongs I gloat
And moreover sing a ballad to 'ashore' you I'm afloat
Once on a time old Drury's walls with plaudits loud would ring
But now they smile whene'er I strike this attitude and sing

Chorus: I'm a bandit-captain, and my men are bold and brave
Singing Rule Britannia, and my home is on the wave
Sailing o'er the foam with a yeo heave ho
For Jack is every inch of him a sailor.


In the nearest ruined tower the tenor I confine
And go to meet his girl myself and ask her to be mine
But she draws a gleaming dagger and expresses her dislike
To the 'Union' and declares if I approach her she'll go on 'strike'
But still I am persistent in my efforts, and declare
That I have sworn that she shall be mine, and mean to keep my swear
Then of course the low comedian's conveniently nigh
To rescue her and stab me, then I sing a song and die.

Chorus: Let me like a soldier fall, my dream of love is o'er
Mother, kiss me in my dreams, on dear old England's shore
Rocked right off to sleep on the rolling deep
I must leave you, Annie dear, I'm called to glory.


But operas of the olden times to modern tastes give way
I do the burlesque villain now, as heavy 'biz' don't pay
I'm called Lord Liverpool Street, or the Duke of Drury Lane
Sir Knowland Stoneybroke, or something equally innane
I call the ladies Totty, drink, sing comic songs and dance
Say anything except the author's lines when there's a chance
When I mimic Henry Irving all the house is in a roar
And a comic song that goes like this is sure of an encore,

Chorus: Call her back and kiss her, just once more to see the face
Ask yourself the question, in a very different place
Booze there is, and it's another colour now
So is it very likely? Ask a p'liceman.
 
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Performed by W.P. Dempsey
 
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