THE PUTNEY BUS
 
Putney Bus
 
I was walking home from the city
Three days ago down Ludgate Hill
When a maiden, youthful and pretty,
Caused my bosom love's own thrill
She was, I thought, oh what a pity,
Walking alone against her will
I'll escort her down the street
Lest annoyance she should meet

Chorus: I went after , she sped along
Tra, la, la, la, la, Tra, la, la, la, la,
And I gaily murmured my song
Tra, la, la, la,
Let me save you miss from the throng
Tra, la, la, la, la, la.


She crossed Lugate Circus, and Fleet Street
Walking as hard as she could go
I could almost hear how my heart beat
But my distress I would not show
I had vowed to follow her neat feet
E'en tho' she went to Jericho
Then imagine my non plus
When she took the Putney Bus.

Chorus: That conductor, the silly lout
Tra, la, la, la, la, Tra, la, la, la, la,
When hi bus woa he heard me shout
Tra, la, la, la,
Just replied full inside and out
Tra, la, la, la, la, la.


All the men returning from business
Hansoms were full _ no single place
I could not a chance such as this miss
So I set off at a headlong pace
People laughed and cried here's a quiz this
Trying the Putney Bus to race
I went on till I was lame
No one got down all the same

Chorus: My heart beating too pit a pat
Tra, la, la, la, la, Tra, la, la, la, la,
And I lost my new glossy hat
Tra, la, la, la,
I could not stop to pick up that
Tra, la, la, la, la, la.


I went on till I was exhausted
Just losing sight of her blue gown
Passed a cabman whom I accosted
Tho' he was driving back to Town
Let me drive I shouted in your stead
There's half a sovereign - money down
He was willing I was beat
But I took the driver's seat

Chorus: And I wacked that old blooming horse
Tra, la, la, la, la, Tra, la, la, la, la,
Layed it on too with no remorse
Tra, la, la, la,
Then I resumed my frantic course
Tra, la, la, la, la, la.


All the way I followed my charmer
Till she got down at Walham Green
But I did not wish to alarm her
So to accost her was not keen
When I got a good look at the charmer
I felt my face turn white and green
Never so startled in all my life
Who d'ye think it was? My Wife!

Chorus: Off I went again like a shot
Tra, la, la, la, la, Tra, la, la, la, la,
In ten minutes was a mile from the spot
Tra, la, la, la,
Never stopped once till home I had got
Tra, la, la, la, la, la.
 
Trivia1
Arthur Lloyd was a playwright as well as an outstanding singer, he was very versatile and could sing anything with his distinctive baritone voice. He became a manager later in his career and took over various music halls. This song describes him walking home from the city and spotting a pretty girl. He follows her but is dismayed when he looses her after she gets on the bus to Putney. He chases her in a cab and when he catches up with her discovers, in true Music Hall fashion, that the pretty girl is actually his wife.
Trivia3
 
Written and composed by Florian Dore & Augustus Martini - 1884
Performed by Arthur Lloyd (1840-1904)
From monologues.co.uk Music Hall Lyrics Collection
 
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